My "New" Rock Island 1911


January 12, 2004, 09:52 PM
Bear in mind, this is my very first 1911, so some stupidity might shine through....

Just picked up my "New" R!A Government model 5". I got lucky, and dealer had just taken in trade a RIA 5" that he had sold 4days ago, because the guy said it was "too big for his hand". He never fired it, only some slight holster wear from a cheap, poor fitting holster, and a set of uber-cheesy Uncle Mikes grip panels with the finger groove add on on front. Anybody want them? So, since the gun was tecnically used, I git a bit off the price. Total price out the door, 1911, extra Chip McCormick mag, and a box of MagTech FMJ was 278.00, new, the same gun costs 285 from my dealer.

Brought it home, and promptly tore it apart. Quite a bit different than any other auto Ive had, but no biggie once you grasp the whole barrell bushing idea.

Finish in the gun, is, well, OK at best. Not terrible, but nothing to write home about. Oiled up, it looks much, much better. Inside, I saw a few errant machine marks, but nothing out of the ordinary. Everything fits very well, no looseness to speak of anywhere. The barrell looks a little cheap, but we will see how it shoots before passing any judgement on that feature. The included Novak Mag is very, very nice...prettiest part of the whole gun.

I wil shoot it this Saturday, and will decide what to do from there. I have already decided I will want a set of sights eventually, and possibly a Commander hammer, maybe an extended safety.

All in all, I think this is most likely the best gun purchase I have ever made, and am currently more than impressed.

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George Hill
January 12, 2004, 09:57 PM
Sounds like a great deal you got there, and fine entry level 1911...

Let us know how it shoots.

January 13, 2004, 10:34 PM
OK, got a little bit of range time in today, about 150 rounds or so, was low on time.

First things first, I am going to have to buy some of that mega cheap Russian Wolf crap, because this thing is addictive.

I started off at about 15yds on paper, just to see what it was doing. Beginning groups were far from impressive, but I could see potential. First time driving a 1911...why in Gods name did no one warn me of that damn hammer biting the piss out of me?

Finally got it grouping respectably, pretty damn good, considering this was my 1911 deflowerment, and the horrific sights. I can now hold all eight rounds inside a group smaller than my closed hand on paper, from 15 yds.

I next moved back to 25, and tried some steel poppers. Talk about fun!!! John Moses designed this gun with rapid fire in mind. It just seems to fall right where you need it to for the follow up. Very fun.


Hammer bite was a bitch, till I figured a lower hold on it, problem solved, but still want a spur hammer.

150rnds of Mag-Tech and Winnie Value Pack FMJs, and about 25rnds or so of Gold Dot, absolutely no malfunctions, feeding or firing. Totally reliable so far.

In closing, this gun will never go away, only grow to suit my needs, and I see it having soem stablemates pretty soon, unless I try a Hi-Power next...just to see if John was still on the ball in later years....


January 13, 2004, 10:57 PM
I have been looking at those. I am kind of a cheapskate, and like to look for good deals. I promised myself that the next gun I would buy is going to be a 1911. I am glad to hear it worked so well for you. I have also been looking at the Springfield Mil Spec.

January 13, 2004, 11:10 PM
I looked at the Mil-Spec, and I actually recommend the RIA. The finish is a little better on the Mil-Spec, but for the price, its a non-issue. I personally felt the RIA was a better built gun than the Mil-Spec I examined, and still do.

January 14, 2004, 01:01 AM
Try the S&B instead of the Wolf.

The steel cases Wolf uses are lacquer coated and tends to get sticky/gunky in a warm chamber. I just get too many FTE with wolf.

S&B is only a few dollars more per case.

January 14, 2004, 01:09 AM
Glad to hear good things about the Rock Island 1911's. I've been thinking of getting a couple of these, one standard and one wide-body so I can have a 1911 with 14 round mag without paying an arm and a leg.

January 14, 2004, 01:10 AM

How about posting a pic of the piece?


January 14, 2004, 08:54 AM
Congrats on the great buy! (Mine cost about $50 more than yours, sigh...) IMHO the RIA milspec is one of the great "sleeper" bargains. Mine's over 500rds and has been 100% so far. Good fit/finish/trigger right out of the box, no plastic parts or 2-piece bbls (bbl is hardchromed), reliable & accurate, what's not to like for $300? Good luck and keep us posted!...

January 14, 2004, 01:23 PM
great buy, im jealous!

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