Question about carrying inexpensive 1911's


May 11, 2013, 10:20 AM
I am curious if any of you guys carry a lower end 1911 for ccw? and what tests did you run on it if you do, prior to holstering it for carry.
I see so many new 1911's on Buds that they swear are up to par with the name brands as of late. Is this wishful thinking or are they as reliable as they are being made out to be?
I have found that most 1011's under a thousand as a general price, can be dicey to depend on in the past, have they improved and if so which ones, thanks.

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May 11, 2013, 10:29 AM
I carry an ATI FX45GI
I have fired over 5000 rounds through it and the only stoppages were magazine related.

May 11, 2013, 10:36 AM
I carry a RIA/Armscor 1911 CS myself. I've put close to 3000 rounds through this gun in 3 years. I did have it tuned by Arnel at Armscor Precision as well as had them install some Novak Trijicon night sights.

Roadking Rider
May 11, 2013, 10:46 AM
I've never questioned the reliability of my RIA's GI 1911 for CC carry. It has never missed a beat in 900 + plus rounds. That also includes a 35 round squeeze them off as fast as you can mad moment. Talk about one hot pistol. It has gone bang at the range when others costing three times as much didn't. (Long Story)I do use a Wilson combat mag in it though when CC,ing as I believe most FTF with 1911's are Mag related and not so much the fault of the pistol. The Rock has shot factory FMJ's, Reloaded FMJ's, and Hollow points problem free.

May 11, 2013, 11:46 AM
Only test I do is run the ammo brands am gonna use and carry, and the magzines I'm gonna use and carry, if they work and the gun works everytime you are good. Imho most 1911 issues are with magazines and ammo. Meaning good magazines that work with your gun and ammo that works with the magazines, work? Then your gun is good for the most part.

The low end 1911s if they work they work, imho. Same goes for mega expensive high end customs. If they work they work. The difference is the odds are lower for a bad one in the high dollar stuff. Ymmv, but I am comfortable carrying a low end 1911 that works.

May 11, 2013, 12:38 PM
I shot a couple boxes through my Remington 1911R1S before I carried it, though I wouldn't consider it low end, more middle-tier.


May 11, 2013, 01:02 PM
I dont care what name is on the slide as long as the gun can go through 2000 rounds or so with no malfunction of any type (that includes mags).

May 11, 2013, 02:57 PM
I ran the same tests I would run through a Baer or Brown. 500 range rounds and 100 carry rounds. I've got like ~2500 rounds through my Spartan.

I have no doubt that a Wilson or NHC, Baer, Brown, etc will outshoot and outlast any RIA, ATI, or whatever. But I don't have $2000 for a gun. So when (if, I don't shoot THAT much) it comes time to replace my Spartan, I can buy another and still be ahead.

I'd definitely buy a nicer gun if I could afford it, though.

May 11, 2013, 03:08 PM
If it works it works. I'd probably try to buy a Colt though, as long as it worked.

May 11, 2013, 03:26 PM
If they work, they work. If they don't, they don't but may be made to. The main thing that a major brand name gives is a reasonable expectation of consistent quality due to better quality control throughout. That said, some brands have very little quality to control so a bit of research prior to purchase is useful. Caveat Emptor.

May 11, 2013, 03:56 PM
I'd definitely buy a nicer gun if I could afford it, though.

WC, EB, LB, NHC have an average build time of 12m-2yrs... plenty of time to order and save for the final bill...:evil:

May 11, 2013, 04:32 PM
If it works it works. I'd probably try to buy a Colt though, as long as it worked.
The ONLY reason I do not carry my non-collectible Colt Model of 1911 is because Milwaukee Police have a reputation of not giving your gun back, despite court orders.

That said, the Remington 1911R1S is a niiiiiiice piece.


May 11, 2013, 04:59 PM
WC, EB, LB, NHC have an average build time of 12m-2yrs... plenty of time to order and save for the final bill...

I swear everyone on thus forum is going to drive me broke one day! ;)

May 11, 2013, 05:32 PM
I have owned, fired, and carried Rock Island and Para 1911s the more expensive ones costing about $650 which is rather low budget for a 1911. All have been great shooters.

Sauer Grapes
May 11, 2013, 06:30 PM
How many people do you know, that carry a gun that cost over a $1,000? I don't know any.
If the gun goes BANG everytime, your good to go. {IMHO}

May 11, 2013, 07:42 PM
My American Classic has proven to be as reliable as my other 1911's So it been on carry rotation for sometime now . It loves 200gr Corbon JHP plus P

May 11, 2013, 08:35 PM
I know quite a few people who carry a gun that cost more than $1,000. Some of those guns are SIG P-Series guns, others are 1911's. Colts are now pushing $1,000 and I'm seeing prices break $1k.

I don't see this as so much of a big deal. Carry what you it a Makarov you spent $200 on or an Heirloom Precision 1911 that cost $4k+.

May 11, 2013, 10:29 PM
I won't carry any 1911 less than a Colt. Dan Wesson is my current CCW.

Witnessed too many shortcuts taken with budget 1911's. My lifes worth isn't "budget".

bdb benzino
May 12, 2013, 04:26 AM
I have a Charles Daly (RIA) MS 4" that I picked up used from a buddy, it shoots so well and is so reliable that I have started putting in some forged parts and had it bobtailed to suit me better. It didn't really need them, but I figured it was worth it in the more high stress areas. Love that gun, not picky about mags or ammo.
The only things I changed was, having it bobtailed and an Ed Brown chainlink MSH installed, took out the ambi safety and put in a Colt single sided non extended one, and also put in a Colt slide stop too.

May 12, 2013, 07:45 AM
I currently maintain three in my carry rotation, though I haven't rotated in a while. The current one is a near stock Norinco. I changed out all the springs as a matter of SOP, and cleaned up the barrel ramp a little...not because it was causing a problem, but because it didn't feed cast SWCs quite as smoothly as I like...even though I rarely shoot the pistol with my go-to practice ammo. I also knocked a couple warts off the disconnect just because. I shot it about 200 times to insure function. Total cost: 325 dollars.

An early Springfield 1911A1 that came to me with a habit of firing 2-shot bursts due to Bubba-ed up hammer hooks. Replaced the hammer with one from an Argentine Sistema and a NOS USGI sear. Replaced all springs and installed a Wilson Heavy-Duty extractor, tweaked to my liking. All springs were replaced just because.
Total cost: 375 dollars, give or take.

A 1943 USGI Colt that I bought at a gun show in the late 80s for 50 dollars in pieces with a few missing. Decided to do something with it in 2005. Peened the rails a bit...installed a Kart Easy-Fit barrel and an MGW "drop-in" bushing...and a NOS USGI hammer, sear, and disconnect. Springs, of course, know. Total cost: I'd estimate less than 200 dollars.

All three pistols were also fitted with a small-radius firing pin stop because that's just how I am. They all sport the black rubbery Colt 1991A1 grip 'cause I like'em, and all the manual safeties are all the small thumb pad originals because I like those, too...and even though I'll likely never have a need to execute a no-tool detail strip, I like having the option. The pistol is its own tool box, and the small pad thumb safety is the key that opens the box.

All three are dead reliable, and all three are more accurate than they need to be for their intended use.

Roadking Rider
May 12, 2013, 09:02 AM
Most of the people I know carry pistols in the $500/$600 price range. Heck I've been know to carry a never issued CZ 82 at times that cost $200. Hope I never have to use it in SD, but if I did I have no doubt it would operate flawlessly, but if it got confiscated for a while I'd only be out a very reliable $200 pistol. Not some $1,000+ pistol that might some how get lost and I might never see again.

May 12, 2013, 09:07 AM
ATI Military and Titan work just as good as Kimber.

May 12, 2013, 12:33 PM
Realistically, as long as it has never jammed shooting as much of your carry ammo as you will ever carry when its clean to start out with, it doesn't matter much if it starts having problems after several hundred rounds without cleaning. I prefer guns that need little cleaning, but if you go small for the caliber, compromises must be made.

Confidence in my carry piece grows as longer and longer intervals accumulate with actual carry, eventually interrupted by drawing and emptying at the range of all the ammo I'd been carrying. Any failures here would have me looking for something else to carry.

May 14, 2013, 12:14 AM
If you ever have to use your pistol to defend yourself, I think you will find that $1K plus pistol is a drop in the bucket compared to your legal expenses. That being said, I've got a Norinco 1911, Detonics Combat Master, Colt 1991 Commander and a Les Baer TRS that I rotate through. I've changed the springs on them and don't feel any of them are unreliable.

May 14, 2013, 12:32 AM
I have an IAC Tisas 1911 that now has 5K rounds through it.

Factory mag was junk, quickly bought 3 10 rd Chip McCormick mags.
Shot it at first fairly dry with light gun oil (first 2 50 rd outings with it).

Broke it down, cleaned, lubed and greased her up with TW25. Runs like
a champ. Absolute best $349 I ever spent on a gun NIB!!!

May 14, 2013, 12:41 AM
I have three 1911s at the moment:
1) A Colt Series 70 that I bought cheap (REAL cheap!) a decade ago 'cuz a previous owner had wasted good money porting it through the slide, bushing and barrel. Came with a nice set of Novak sights, and would have been worth about 4x what I paid if it hadn't been ported. It would load up with gunk quickly, and be a PITA to strip. Spent nearly as much on a match barrel and bushing, fitted it myself, and got a heck of a shooter out of the deal.
2) A Colt Series 80 Stainless that came to me with a second slide (in 10mm) and three mags for each caliber. I sold the 10mm parts for nearly half of what I'd paid for the setup, and ended up with a $500 stainless Colt.
3) A Les Baer SRP in hardchrome. Has the accurizing package, shoots 1.5" at 50 yards. Tighter than all getout, but starting ti relax after 300 rounds - Baer says 500 to break it in.

All three are proven 100% reliable with hardball and Gold Dots, which I carry, but I don't carry any of them anymore (never carried the Baer). I carry a G30 - less weight, no sentimental attachment, don't care if I beat it up, and holds 10+1. I have a second if the cops need to borrow mine.

Jessie James 58
May 14, 2013, 01:50 PM
If the gun works it is a great gun, no mater what it costs. Just make sure it it is reliable with the ammo you intend to shoot.

I have had old WWII 45s that were dead reliable with what ever I put into them. I even loaded mags with empty caseins and hand cycled the 45 to make sure it would feed properly.

In the same vain, I purchased a new Colt Stainless Gold Cup (80 series) when Colt was going through their first monetary problem. When I took the gun home to clean, It had metal filings all through it. Sent it back to Colt because it had problems with both accuracy and reliability. When I got it back from Colt it was the same and possible a little worse. It went to the next gun show and found a new home.

A high priced 45 will will give the owner bragging rights at the range and shoot tight groups at 50+ feet. Most encounters that require a person to draw and fire, are done at 10 feet or less. With that said reliability is the over riding concern (most 45s will hit a man sized target at 10 feet).

So no mater the cost of the 45 make sure that it feeds and fires the ammo that you intend to use.

May 14, 2013, 02:35 PM
I use my Series 70 Gold Cup that I bought for $500 years ago. Probably worth more than that now. With Chip McCormick mags, it's reliable.


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