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Need advice for .45ACP 1911 Purchase

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by JazzDoc, Nov 12, 2012.

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  1. JazzDoc

    JazzDoc Member

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    About to buy a full size 1911 .45ACP. I'm down to three choices - please offer your candid opinion, pros and cons, regarding these options, and thanks in advance:

    1) Ed Brown Special Forces, 5 inch

    2) Kimber Gold Match II

    3) Colt Gold Cup National Match


    Thanks.
     
  2. cyclopsshooter

    cyclopsshooter Member

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    Carry or target? The Kimber and Colt are target guns with sights that may not be the best for carry. I would rank overall pistol quality 1 Ed B 2 Colt 3 Kimber

    If you want to spend money get the Ed Brown. The Colt will serve you just as well for less. The Kimber probably would too.
     
  3. smalls

    smalls Member

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    The fit, finish, accuracy and warranty of the Ed Brown will make the other two look like BB guns.
     
  4. JazzDoc

    JazzDoc Member

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    Thanks very much for the replies, guys. Appreciated greatly.

    Target and personal home defense, not carry.
     
  5. Simmy952

    Simmy952 Member

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    Kimber would be the last one on the list. Colts are ok but they put a lot on their name. Check out Sig Sauer's line of 1911. For what you are going to drop on a EB, you could buy 2 Sigs and still have some jingle left in your pocket. I bought 2 of the Sigs and they are a very good value for the money. Check out their features. The fit and finish on them are top notch. My first 1911 was a Les Baer. That was when I thought you had to drop lots of cash to get a good 1911. Try one or check them out and I think you will be impressed.
     
  6. cyclopsshooter

    cyclopsshooter Member

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    Sig is just as mimtastic as Kimber
     
  7. EddieNFL

    EddieNFL member

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    1) Brown

    2) Colt

    13) Kimber

    No, the 13 is not a typo.
     
  8. BYJO4

    BYJO4 Member

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    I suggest you also consider a Les Baer PII. For accuracy and quality construction, you get alot for the money. I definitely prefer adjustable sights for range guns and won't cause any problems with home defense use. If you want a Brown, I would get the Executive Target.
     
  9. jim243

    jim243 Member

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  10. cyclopsshooter

    cyclopsshooter Member

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  11. burk

    burk Member

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    And so is Colt. I don't get the reverence toward Colt. We just got a new Special Agent in and the fit and finish wasn't much better than ATI. Kimber still makes GREAT 1911's for the money if you compare them feature for feature. The Ed Brown should be a better gun, but I've sold and owned enough Kimbers where I have no question of their reliability, QC or value. Are they the best? Nope, but I've yet to see an MIM failure with one. There are a few other 1911's I'm impressed with (Dan Wesson in particular), but you'll have a hard time beating a Kimber for the same dollars with an available gun.
     
  12. tomrkba

    tomrkba Member

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    Just buy the Ed Brown gun and get it over with.
     
  13. Pilot

    Pilot Member

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    I bought two Colt 1911's in the last few years, and both have been flawless.
     
  14. cyclopsshooter

    cyclopsshooter Member

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    Metallurgy, Colt only Mims the mag catch, sear, disconnector. Sig and Kimber go much further by MIMing safties, hammers, slide-stops...

    Colt vs ATI... Colt uses forged steel- ATI is cast.. do your metallurgical homework before judging a book by its cover.
     
  15. JazzDoc

    JazzDoc Member

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    Again - many thanks for the input and the great photos! Loads of food for thought before I drop that dime.
     
  16. CZ57

    CZ57 member

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    JazzDoc, in that same price range you have several options with Dan Wesson which I wouldn't feel any need to spend more money with something else. ;)
     
  17. burk

    burk Member

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    But my point is no one has shown me proof of significant failure rates among MIM parts (at least those used by Kimber). For the record I've seen two Bullet Proof Wilson slide stops crack, I've yet to see a Kimber slide stop crack. While Kimber has had some issues notably the external extractor stuff they make some great guns, but people love to take pot shots at them, it just gets old. At least they are building quality guns in the US, and making their own frames. They aren't getting Frames from the Philippines or Brazil like a couple of their competitors. I think they should be applauded for maintaining quality while they keep their production in the US.

    My beef with the Colt vs ATI wasn't the metallurgy it was the fit and finish. The Special agent had loads of sharp edges, sloppy fit on the safeties and beavertail and to be frank I was generally unimpressed. For a thousand dollar carry piece they should pay attention to details that make them safer. A carry gun with multiple easily snagged edges is simply not fit for the market.
     
  18. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    There's nothing wrong with a Kimber. Haters gonna hate.
     
  19. lobo9er

    lobo9er Member

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    Kimber owners how are yours holding up?
     
  20. MaterDei

    MaterDei Member

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    I'd get the Ed Brown.

    Why?

    Well, I've got a Kimber already. I've had it for 10 years and it's boring. It feeds everything I've ever given it and it shoots wherever I point it. I've fired thousand of rounds through it to include some very sketchy reloads and it has never flinched. Where's the fun in that?

    Ed Browns are highly touted. I'd love to get one so that I can find out what it is about them that makes them so great. People say things like:

    Not sure where I've heard statements like this but if you look hard enough I'm sure you'll find things like these said about Ed Browns. I'm not doubting that the Ed Browns are good, I'd like to own one so that I can finally learn how crappy my Kimber is and what it is that I've been missing all these years.

    Colts, too, seem nice but I'm not going to buy one. Colt owners are like Dallas Cowboys' fans, annoying. I'll let others be Colt and Glock fan boys. :p
     
  21. NWcityguy2

    NWcityguy2 Member

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    If money were no object I'd get the Ed Brown, not a hard choice in that scenario. Not a very realistic scenario but not a very difficult on either. Mind you I'd be buying this gun knowing that it isn't going to draw, aim, pull the trigger and reload for me. I've seen a shooter or two who have become greatly frustrated when their high dollar gun is not "shooting" well for them.

    If it were my money, something happened to my 1911, I needed a new one and had to choose between those 3, I'd get the Kimber. I've never been impressed with Colts finish, features or trigger for the price. I wouldn't recommend a Gold Cup either if you are planning to shoot JHPs unless you are willing to have a smith work on it.

    If you are willing to look outside of the three you listed look at an STI Trojan. Unless someone wants budget or stainless 1911 I think that is one of the very best choices for the price. Odds are slim you will be able to find one locally though.
     
  22. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    I owned a Colt, there was nothing magical about it. My Kimber is the best handgun I have ever owned. Several of my close friends and family bought them after shooting mine. None have had a significant problem. I have a few more friends who bought cheaper options (like a SA Mil-spec) and they have all said they just should have bought a Kimber.
     
  23. Skylerbone

    Skylerbone Member

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    Seems there's a unicorn in the horse race... Not bashing, just trying to inform:

    Ed Brown, I've seen a few posts by individuals with slide stop notches peened out after fewer than 1,000 rounds. Otherwise EB makes some beautiful looking 1911s any their owners aren't afraid to tout them.

    Kimber, aka MIMber are a high production 1911 that do indeed use quite a few MIM parts. While some companies like S&W will claim the parts are better and raw materials are costlier the true brilliance of MIM is its consistent size and quality (or lack thereof in some cases, again not pointing fingers). That means fewer hands needed to fit parts, fewer rejected parts, less wear on tooling and a net savings to companies. Specific to Kimber 1911s are undersized chambers leading to failures to feed. Not a forgone conclusion that every Kimber will have problems, merely that the potential is heightened by the specs. Last thing of note is with sights. I have read with amusement a half dozen or more threads involving a Kimber owner bending steel punches, mushrooming brass drifts and breaking sight pushers in attempts to remove them while fellow Kimber owners echo the same. If you want different sights have a reputable smith install them.

    Colt, can't stake a plunger tube to save their lives! Some are fine on arrival, none that I've bought were. Colt is a brand often compared to other offerings in terms of "fit and finish". Simply put, they have a different philosophy. Colt works to the print and its well stated tolerances as designed by JMB. A 1991 Colt won't come with an interference fit between the barrel and bushing because it was never designed that way. Function takes precedence over form which in today's market doesn't always please the end user with "nicer" options. A Gold Cup was an worthwhile investment for target shooters 30 years ago but that's one model whose reputation has in my mind outlived its status.

    If it were my money and a full custom wasn't an option I would consider a very different trio. I mentioned the unicorn, meaning the Brown because of the obvious price gap. To throw another into the mix:

    Wilson Supergrade. As refined as the Brown and IMO the better made of the two. Best CS in the firearms industry.

    Les Baer. A no-nonsense 1911 built for the long haul with focus on function and accuracy. Not as refined overall as the Wilson (unless you cough up for a Signature which costs more than my car) but the 1911 that says "I'm here for business".

    Dan Wesson Valor. A MIM-free small production 1911 whose build quality is everything you might not expect for just a few hundred more than a Colt or Kimber.

    My actual dollars would spend $1,000 on a Colt and put another $1,500 in to making it a thoroughbred. I'd pick the barrel, the sights, the safeties and slide stop. Have it dehorned, throated, weld up the rails, set the pull weight to 3 lbs., choose a frontstrap treatment and refinish it.

    [​IMG]
     
  24. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    All I will say about my Kimber chamber is that it has chewed through all of my amateur reloads without a burp. My Para, on the other hand, had a shallower cut in the rifling, they wouldn't always chamber, I had to start sizing them to fit THAT chamber.
     
  25. Tophernj

    Tophernj Member

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    I would go with the Brown. My buddy has one and it is a wonderful shooter. I can't put into words what makes it "better" but it's there.

    I love my Kimber. MIM or no, she's an amazingly accurate shooter that eats everything.

    Colt... in my experience they pattern more than group.

    Best of luck.

    C
     
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