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Thinking about getting a kimber

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by reagan2005, Apr 16, 2008.

  1. reagan2005

    reagan2005 New Member

    Apr 13, 2008
    I'm in the market for a 1911 style pistol. The one thats caught my eye is the Kimber stainless pro tle/rl 2. Before i sell out the 1300 dollars for it I want to know if kimber is a good 1911. Because all I've been hearing is mixed reviews. And can they chamber hollow points, because i've heard that some 1911 style pistols cant.
  2. Dksimon

    Dksimon Active Member

    Apr 1, 2008
    South Dakota
    I know nothing about Kimber. Except for the fact that they are beautiful.

    I will be following this thread, thanks for starting it.
  3. Ske1etor

    Ske1etor Active Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Marrero, Louisiana
    If you are here looking for opinions on the kimber you are going to get 35 posts preaching anti kimber garbage.

    Most will respond here saying that it isn't worth the money, its junk... blah blah blah ...

    If you like it, buy it. It is a good firearm and if you like it, get it.
  4. odsixer

    odsixer New Member

    Jun 8, 2007
  5. The Wiry Irishman

    The Wiry Irishman Participating Member

    May 22, 2006
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    I've got ~1700 through mine with no malfs. My friend has more through his, same result. Chambers everything I've fed to it so far, HP included.
  6. JoeSlomo

    JoeSlomo Active Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    I bought a custom TLE / RL II here recently and had some serious...issues imo.

    The thing IS accurate, but she sure did have some teething problems due to the extractor being tighter than a walrus's rear end, and apparently due to some shoddy angles that required some fine tuning.

    I bought the thing because my buddie has one, and it shoots extremely well, as does his target model, but both have had many, many rounds fired through them.

    I had some trigger work done to her, and a new front sight, and while the smith was doing that, he looked at the extractor for me. When I went to pick her up he said: "Oh yea, now it should shoot too..." hehe. He told me he tuned up the angles a bit, removed a bur, and she has been running like a deer for the past 300 rounds or so, which she didn't before.

    Prior to the return from the smith, she would hang up at LEAST every 100 rounds or so with a failure to fully return to battery, which usually required a slight push on the slide, or the round would get caught on the ramp. This was with WWB ball ammo too mind you.

    At first I suspected the mags, because I had some older mags (mec gar sp) that seemed to work well, but not 100%. But after pulling the extractor and cycling rounds through every mag I owned, I found that it fed smooth as silk WITHOUT the extractor regardless of the mags.

    Apparently the extractor was the culprit, and this is a fairly common issue with kimbers from what I have read.

    While I have no doubt you could get yours up and running, if I had it to do over again I would go all out and sink a little more cash into a Les Baer or an Ed Brown. While ANY 1911 can have some growing pains, if you are already investing 1300 bucks in a gun, you might as well take that extra step.

  7. Dstoerm

    Dstoerm New Member

    Mar 30, 2008
    I have Kimber full sized pistols, and they are accurate, reliable, well made and attractive. I think that Kimber makes a fine gun, while some other more expensive custom guns may be marginally better. I have heard some people talk about things such as MIM parts, FTF/FTE problems, but in my collection and among my stable of shooting buddies, our Kimbers suffer no problems.

    I replaced some factory parts on one of mine a while back (slide stop, grips, main spring housing, and safety) for some aftermarket 'upgrade' parts. Then my buddy asks "Why did you ditch the old stuff, were you having trouble with the pistol?"... well, no, it never malfunctioned - ever. I wish I had my money back in my wallet, since the factory parts were just as good, no matter what you might read or hear otherwise.

    Since Kimber has become the Big Boy of 1911s, they also make a very big target.

  8. asiparks

    asiparks Member

    Jun 2, 2003
    portland, the rainy one
    $1300 ? You need to look around on gunbroker a bit, they regularly go for aound $1000. Anyway. $1300 as has been mentioned gets you awfully close to a new Les Baer, and right on top of a good used one, another $200 gets you into used Springfield Pros, Rock Rivers etc. If you must have a pistol with a light on it, then the kimber is fine, but shop around for a better deal
  9. SilverState

    SilverState New Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Horror has a face.
    Agreed. For $1300, you can get a used Brown, Baer, or Wilson.
  10. glockman19

    glockman19 Senior Member

    Mar 16, 2007
    I have 4 Kimbers Love them all. Yes some will chime in and tell you of "lemmon" guns....Doc....but every company has produced a few.

    That said I'll keep buying Kimbers because I think they are a good gun for the money and the Custom Shop models are as good as they get.

    The stainless pro tle/rl 2 is a great gun have you shot it? I have a Pro Carry II and the best part is breaking it in the first few hundred rounds. The tollerances were so tight on mine it was so accurate.

    Check out Jim's Shooting & Supplies in Texas he's on Gunbroker.com and has great prices as a master dealer. BTW I paid a little less than $1,300 OTD for my Raptor II, The nicest 1911 I own followed closely by the Ultra Raptor II, another Custom Shop Creation. I would personally buy the Pro Raptor II over the stainless pro tle/rl 2.

    Whatever you decide see if you can shoot it first. There's nothing worse than spending $1,300 ona gun you're not going to love.
  11. riceboy72

    riceboy72 Active Member

    Jan 14, 2008
    Western Washington
    Please check out www.1911forum.com when you have some free time. The website, as aptly titled, is very informative, professional, and overwhelming when it comes to the 1911 platform, and I have learned quite a bit of what I know now about 1911's, particularly Kimbers, from that website.

    Toward the lower part of the page you'll find a special section dedicated to Kimber pistols. If you use the search function, or just sniff around in there, you will find a plethora of knowledge and useful information as it pertains to Kimbers. I personally own two of the older Kimbers and find them very suitable.

    There is much talk about Kimber's quality control being less than perfect over the past few years, but that's subjective and everyone has something to say about it. Read up, soak it all in, and make your decision based upon what you want afterward. Granted, it is the internet, but I think you'll see a low tolerance for BS there with the focus on educating and sharing knowledge about the 1911.
  12. loop

    loop Participating Member

    Nov 27, 2007
    NW Arizona
    I carried my Kimber for 12 years for SD and shot it once a month in competition. When it all comes down to dust I'd still rather carry my Kimber than any other gun I own.

    Shoots one-inch groups at 25 yards, never fails on me except with FMJ 200-grain semi-wadcutters, it is the standard by which I judge every other pistol.

    Lot of critics.Near as I can tell they are people who expect more than the pistol can deliver - or just don't have the basic skills to take advantage of the platform.
  13. The_woodsman

    The_woodsman New Member

    Jan 30, 2008
    They are fantastic 1911s. In the gunsmith biz they are known as the best production 1911 you can buy. I have one that has more than 1500 rounds down the tube and it is an excellent shooter.

    My own is a Bul framed stainless polymer. 14+1 in .45. and got the meprolights and a couple extra mags with the gun.

    Like any gun, there is a break in period of about 200 rounds. Once you get the pistols broken in, they are very close to 100% reliable. They shoot great right from the start (if you do your part).
  14. calaverasslim

    calaverasslim Participating Member

    Jul 20, 2005
    San Antonio de Bejar
    I have a pro Carry II that I have have for several years. I bought it because I wasn't really happy with my Colt Commander. Took it to the range and ran about 200 rounds thru it just to break it in and then compared it with the Colt.

    Sold the Colt

    Since then I have run another 1000 ot 1200 rounds thru it and just recently it has started to lock open halfway thru a magazine. Not often but just enuf to be aggravating.

    Other than the afore mentioned problem, I don't regret selling the Colt. This will feed any type ammo I shove in it and shoots to point of aim at 20 yards every time and pretty close at 25 and 30 yards.

    $700 well spent, thank you very much!!!!!;)
  15. dhoomonyou

    dhoomonyou Active Member

    Mar 12, 2003
    is that an internal or external extractor?
  16. Wayne G.

    Wayne G. Member

    Apr 28, 2007
    Regarding the "2" in tle2. 2 designates the Swartz safety inherent in most modern Kimbers. I would encourage you to educate yourself about it to determine if it's something you want in your 1911. Some do, some don't.

    Regarding the $1300. Dayummm! It's your money but for my dollar, I'd rather have a Baer.
  17. schmeky

    schmeky Senior Member

    Mar 17, 2006
    West Monroe, Louisiana

    I'm surprised the Kimber bashers have not appeared:rolleyes:

    I have a Kimber and it is my best 1911, and yes, I own and have owned other brands. If that's what you want, get it. Like the others have said, look for a better price or negotiate with a dealer.
  18. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Elder

    Aug 11, 2005
    Elbert County, CO
    I only have one Kimber, a Stainless Target II 10mm. I love it, and it's been flawless except with Norma ammo. But on that note, out of the 4 10mm's pictured below, only the Witness Compact will feed Norma ammo without issues.


    I wouldn't hesitate to buy another Kimber, but I'm after a polished blue no-frills series 70 right now. Since Kimber doesn't offer such a critter, It's gonna be a Colt or USFA.
  19. Supertac45

    Supertac45 Member

    May 18, 2006
    U.P., Michigan
    I'd spend the money on a Baer.
  20. The Ruckus

    The Ruckus New Member

    Nov 12, 2007
    SE Michigan
    I cannot say Kimbers are terrible, I don't own one after all. However, half this community would agree there are better 1911's out there for less money. If I were to buy a 1911 in the 750-1200 range it would be a Springfield, or Colt.


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