Rock Island 1911GI


October 24, 2011, 02:19 PM
Hey guys, just wondering if any of you have shot an RI 1911? I played with a couple at the gun show, and they kept getting my attention. $409 is what a few were priced at, and since I'm not a huge 1911 guy, and just want a GI, that is really appealing. So what do you guys think? Good? Bad? Any other brands I should look at?

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October 24, 2011, 02:50 PM
Do a search and I think you will find they generally are very well respected. I know I have no complaints about mine and consider it a best value of sorts in the entry level 1911 space.

October 24, 2011, 02:53 PM
i think they are great guns, mine has never stumbled on a hardball round - never shot hp through it and is very accurate. i have a midsize with a diy trigger job

October 24, 2011, 02:56 PM
My first RIA is approacing 15,000 rounds, although its slowed down a lot since I got my RIA 9mm 1911 where the ammo costs are significantly lower.

Among the best bang/buck pistols out there IMHO.

October 24, 2011, 02:59 PM
It probably won't be shooting HP's... it's mostly going to be a range gun. Nice to see you guys like 'em.

And Wally, wow... 15K is impressive! Anything fail on it?

October 24, 2011, 03:08 PM
And Wally, wow... 15K is impressive! Anything fail on it?

Link broke, at about 3000 rounds, $5 replacement and nothing since except a recoil and firing pin spring replacement. There is an old thread about it here from when it first happened.

Mine is fine with JHP, I don't shoot a lot of them but I found a forgotten box of 500 185gr JHP bullets that I reloaded up and shot in the RIA, because I'd decided that 230gr JHP would be better.

Probably 8,000 of the rounds have been Wolf 230gr FMJ steel case since when I got my first RIA it was selling for ~$110/1000 and I could hardly reload for that price.

October 24, 2011, 03:13 PM
Very cool, man. Can't ask for a whole lot more out of a gun, especially at the price these go for. I'm liking these more and more as I research them. Do they accept standard 1911 parts?

Phonetic Diabetic
October 24, 2011, 03:16 PM
I had one for a long time, never failed on me and was very accurate. Times got tough, and I had to sell it. I sure do miss her.

October 24, 2011, 03:19 PM
Do they accept standard 1911 parts?

Probably as much as any other, pretty much all 1911 replacement parts are a bit over sized and need a little fitting to account for the wide range manufacturers during its 100 year production.

The barrel link was perfectly standard.

October 24, 2011, 03:27 PM
Ok, that's good to know. Thanks fellas.

October 24, 2011, 03:36 PM
I really like mine. I had a trigger job done to help smooth it a little, as mine was a bit gritty. I have put 400 rounds through it so far, but I still won't make it a carry gun yet due to:
* Consistently refuses to load the first round. The round is not sliding up under the extractor whether I slingshot the slide or release it via the slide release. However, during fire it loads just fine.
* Consistently throws brass back in my face, even after the smith touched up the ejector. This is NOT helping my flinching problem!
* Almost razor sharp edges- the magazine well notch at the front of the grip and the grip safety.

October 24, 2011, 03:57 PM
a buddy has one; it shoots great...when it works. he bought one, and a week later, after about 100 rounds, it started having all kinds of issues, with the extractor, the slide stop, the mag catch, and a few others. he talked to the president of RIA directly (yes, from the Philippines), and RIA had him ship the gun to them, on their dime. they sent him a brand new gun, which has been failure free for 1,000's of rounds.

i've shot it. it's a pretty sweet shooting gun. i almost bought one, but the Taurus had more features i wanted, primarily the sights, and the beavertail grip safety. i still might get one, though.

October 24, 2011, 04:01 PM
I have the RIA 3.5" M1911a1-cs. I have just over 1000 rounds through it, the only issues i have had were in the 1st 100 rounds; the original magazine was not feeding right. Since i replaced the mag it has been flawless, and has even digested 185 gr golden sabers without any problems. Finish is not spectacular, and there are a few rough edges, but nothing that impairs functionality. Overall it was a great purchase; i would say RIA is a fine choice if you want an inexpensive but dependable entry level 1911.

October 24, 2011, 04:04 PM
im not a fan of the novack mags that come with them, i chucked mine in the trash.

October 24, 2011, 04:09 PM
i have mine 2 years now, i have a plain jane m1911a1 all i did was switch them ugly wooden grips for carbon fiber black grips it shoot slike a dream!

October 24, 2011, 04:22 PM
Very well thought of by most owners, I have three myself. This one's had a bunch of WWII vintage Colt parts put on, only had to have the hammer fitted.

In a repro holster.

October 24, 2011, 04:42 PM
Never had the GI, but did have the Tactical. Outstanding weapon, the only flaw was the mag. After going to a Wilson mag, never had another problem.

October 24, 2011, 06:21 PM
well, Inebriated, seems like THR agrees: RIA makes one fine 1911, at a great price. that is, until some guy comes here and spouts off the usual "if it ain't a Colt it's copy" business. :p

October 24, 2011, 07:19 PM
For the price, these should be cheaply made. They're not. Slide stop broke in the first month, nothing else in the last three years. I have the Tactical, it came out of the box with a really sweet trigger. I need a 9mm now.

October 24, 2011, 08:01 PM
Here's a picture of mine with the new arched mainspring housing and the Pachmyer grips:

October 24, 2011, 08:30 PM
I picked up a RIA Tac in 9mm a week or two ago. Runs great, no issues with the OEM Checkmate mags. I picked up a Wilson Combat 10 rounder, and it has issues feeding the the first round if I use HP's. Looking at it, the mag is presenting the round canted down, not sure why. Other then that it runs like clock work.


October 24, 2011, 10:08 PM
Cool, cool. Like I said, it'd be rare if I put HP's through it. Thanks for the pics and replies guys.

October 24, 2011, 10:15 PM
Cool, cool. Like I said, it'd be rare if I put HP's through it. Thanks for the pics and replies guys.

Ever seen what hot .45 HP's will do to a milk jug full of water? It'll start you a whole new hobby....

October 25, 2011, 04:43 AM
Mine runs any JHP that I want to put through it. Even the old Speer GoldDot 230 grn "Flying Ashtrays" It's a veritable garbage can of a gun.

My first RIA was a complete and total mess. Wouldn't do anything right. I sent it back to the guys at Armscorp and they replaced it with a new gun that has never hiccupped once.

Once that gun proved to me that it would run, I made a bunch of simple mods so that I could learn to do a little work myself. It's now one of my most accurate pieces and even does CCW and nightstand duty at times.

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