Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by grubbylabs, Sep 16, 2012.
The American Classic & American Classic II are VERY good, VERY inexpensive 1911s.
Retail is about $500 or so.
The ACII has all the features of the expensive models at 1/2 the price.
It has the extended beaver tail, lowered/flared ejection port & Novak 3 dot adjustable sights.
The down side is that the grips look like crap & it only only comes with one mag.
(but that mag is a very good 8rd ACTMAG.)
And it works flawlessly with $7 mags.
I put Altamont grips on mine.
The AC is a stock GI model which retails for about $450
I'm not familiar with RIA or some of the other recommendations but I'm sure they are fine workable pistols. I have been thinking about the STIs because they have a good rep for 1911s.
I'm always in the market for something new. Be careful about used guns unless you trust the seller(esp. gun shows). Yay long years ago I got a great deal on a used full sized Colt Gov't model only to find the sear had been too aggressively filed down and I had a full auto pistol in my hand. That wasn't good---luckily I'd only loaded a partial mag at the range. If I buy a used pistol now I always have my gunsmith buddy tear it down and do a total inspection before it's fired. Caveat emptor!
Colt Officers .45 ACP.
The Kimber looks just great but I like parkerized on a 45. What do you like is what counts though.
The second link j1 gave is also a fine, economical choice. It's a great shooter.
Smith and Wesson
I bought a smith and Wesson series E scaduim frame about a month ago , for the size and power you can't beat it , I also have a Sig Scorpian they are both great guns but if push come to shove I would go with the Smith E series
You want to avoid the following: an external extractor, full-length guide rod, Series 80-style firing pin block, and a Swartz safety. That knocks a lot of recommendations off the list. All, in my opinion, adversely affect reliability or ease-of-use of a 1911.
I'd say you want a standard mil spec to start, in other words. RIA does a decent job with those. So does Norinco. The Springfield Range Officer is frequently mentioned at this price point, as is the Ruger. If you pick up a standard mil spec model, I'd lower and flare the ejection port, and while you're at it, get a decent gunsmith to look it over.
And, more to the point, they don't give you anything you need.
Well you can buy this one, but it will cost you a hell of a lot more then a grand!
Nor is there anything wrong with these features. Just different. If you're a purist, I suppose it matters. I have/had 1911's with just about every combination of those things, and they all worked just fine.
Things I like about the Sig:
It's a Commander-size pistol, with 4.25" barrel and full-size grip. This means it has a somewhat longer sight radius and a little bit more weight out front to help mitigate recoil. It also means that it takes a full-size magazine, so it has one more round on tap.
It comes with really nice snag-free night sights. They present a good sight picture, day or night.
It's got a bob-tailed butt, and that roundness seems to make it fit my hand better. Purely subjective, but there ya go.
It's all stainless steel, frame and slide (finished in black 'Nitron'). I don't mind carrying a bit of extra weight around, and in my opinion, stainless is just more durable than aluminum. I can't speak to the durability of scandium as used by S&W, because I just don't know that much about it. I do know that I like the weight when it comes to handling recoil. I also know that as long as I don't abuse the pistol too terrible much, it'll be handed down from my kids to their kids, long after I'm gone.
Hope this helps you some.
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