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Springfield Custom Carry or Les Baer Custom Carry?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by CPshooter, May 4, 2010.

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  1. CPshooter

    CPshooter Member

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    Hello folks,


    I've spent the last few days researching 1911s from the higher-end makers and it has come down to two: a Springfield Armory Custom Carry or a Les Baer Custom Carry. At first I was going to go with a $600 Mil Spec and upgrade from there. Then I realized I'd be much better off ordering a Custom Carry from Springfield's Custom Shop and getting everything I want in one convenient stop.

    I'm looking for a well-made, no-frills 5" 1911 without front cocking serrations, FLGR, ambi-safety, etc.

    So here are my two options:

    1) SA Custom Carry (around $1450 from what I understand, but haven't verified the price since it's not listed on Springfield's website)

    The following would be performed by the Custom Shop while it's there:
    - Undercut trigger guard for high-hand grip ($75)
    - 30lpi front strap checkering ($140)
    TOTAL: $1665

    2) Les Baer Custom Carry ($1830)
    - specify NO front cocking serrations or ambi-safety (assuming no extra charge for omitting these two features)
    TOTAL: $1830

    Both guns come standard with a blued finish. (The SA Custom Carry offers an optional parkerized finish at no additional cost, but I'll probably stick with the blue finish if I go with the SA) I plan on sending in whatever gun I go with for a Birdsong Black-T or IonBond Black DLC finish after it develops some serious holster wear down the road.

    Heinie Ledge or Slant Pro Straight-8s will replace the stock sights either way.

    Which would you go with and why? Also, anyone know the current wait time for both guns?

    Thanks in advance!
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2010
  2. parputt

    parputt Member

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    Les Baer with out a doubt. I have a SA mil-spec and Baer TRS. The SA is a nice gun, but for an extra 200.00 you are getting a much better weapon.
     
  3. kamagong

    kamagong Member

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    Interesting dilemma. I have both a Baer and a Springfield Custom 1911 and they are both great guns. If I had to choose only one though I'd get the Springfield for the simple fact that it has the lifetime warranty. The fact that you can specify other options like Heinie sights or a Black-T finish is also nice, Baer will only use his parts.

    Don't confuse the SA Mil-Spec or even the TRP with the Custom Carry. The first two are production guns, although the TRP is a very nice one. The Springfield Custom Carry on the other hand is a true semi-custom, built one at a time and hand fit with premium parts. The quality of the Springfield Custom Shop's work is on par with the offerings from Les Baer, Ed Brown, Nighthawk, or Wilson Combat.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Shipwreck

    Shipwreck Member

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    I'd go with the Custom Springer - They make a great gun. The only neg is the 1 year wait period on your order. I have no idea what the Les Baer wait is, but I do not think it is that long.

    I have 1 Custom Shop Springer, and I love it :) I had it done in 9mm.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  5. EddieNFL

    EddieNFL member

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  6. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    Nice pistols, fellers. *droool*
     
  7. rellascout

    rellascout member

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    No contest... get the Baer.
     
  8. benderx4

    benderx4 Member

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    Very interesting dilemma, indeed. Keep in mind that the Springer Custom is pretty much an entirely different gun than the "ordinary" Springfield Armory 1911.

    I own both guns as well, a Springer Custom TG01 and a Les Baer TRS. These are my two remaining 1911s of almost a dozen I've owned. That should tell you something in and of itself. So, in other words, you can't go wrong with either choice.

    It probably should boil down to availability, wait time, lifetime warranty of the SA, trigger, looks, fit to your hand, etc. And just so you know, the fit and finish of both my guns are equal to, or superior to any Nighthawk, Brown or Wilson I've handled. As for the trigger, my nod goes to the TGO1, whereas my son prefers the Baer.

    Two great guns, it just comes down to which will work the best for YOU!

    [​IMG]
     
  9. rellascout

    rellascout member

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    If the Springer is so wonderful why does it matter if it comes with a lifetime warranty?

    Baer comes with no written warranty but I have never heard of them ever not correcting or fixing their work.

    On all custom pistols and rifles we want your 100% satisfaction. As long as customer abuse has not created a problem, we will probably repair your custom pistol or rifle free of charge. If you have a problem, it’s usually ammunition related and we can help you over the phone with any concerns you might have. If you have questions, please feel free to call during office hours.

    Springer Customs are nice guns but they do not have the reputation that Baer. They are and always will be connected to the Imbel based gun which Springer slaps its name on. This IMHO hurts their perception and their value. You will get more for a Baer, Wilson or Brown because everything these companies offer are semi-custom.

    If you are dropping $1450 to $1800 the resale value has to come into play because it is an indicator where "real world" value meets "perceived value."

    In the end they are both good guns and you will probably be happy with either but again for me it was no contest. It was les baer or a full house custom Colt done by the smith of my choice. Springer never entered the picture in any form.
     
  10. kamagong

    kamagong Member

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    The underlined portion in red is why I consider the Springfield lifetime warranty important. Both semi-custom houses produce great guns. That isn't to say that they are 100% perfect however, no man-made item is. Sooner or later they will let a lemon out the door. If I was that unlucky individual that owned the lemon I would definitely appreciate the peace of mind that comes with knowing that my 1911 is covered by a lifetime warranty rather than wondering if the maker "will probably repair your custom pistol or rifle free of charge." That said I haven't had any problems with my Concept II and I don't have any reservations recommending Les Baer based on my experiences. But IMO the existence of a lifetime warranty (for any firearm) is definitely an issue to consider.
     
  11. Shipwreck

    Shipwreck Member

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    Resale value for a Springer Professional does not drop any more than any other semi-custom/custom.

    They will do anything you want too. I look at my Full Rail Operator as a custom gun, not a semicustom. They don't make too many of them. And, I've never seen another one in 9mm on any website before. I don't know exactly how many they made in that caliber, but I'll bet it ain't many.

    But, everyone has their own opinion of what they like best. I prefer Ed Browns and Springfield Customs over Nighthawks, Les Baers and Wilson.s It's just whatever your thing is.
     
  12. EddieNFL

    EddieNFL member

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    I prefer Springfields over Kimbers.
     
  13. ttheel

    ttheel Member

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    This one's easy. Baer.
     
  14. CPshooter

    CPshooter Member

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    I appreciate the comments guys!

    I ordered the Springfield Custom Carry.:D

    The reason I went with the Springfield is because I got it just the way I wanted, the first time around. I'm sure the Baer is an amazing pistol and I plan on buying a Premier II at some point down the road, but right now the Springfield was just calling my name.

    The SA lifetime warranty is important to me. Not because I think it will break, but because I've heard that Baer tells their customers to "keep shooting" when their brand new gun doesn't work properly out of the box, and even refuses to take the gun back until it has had a certain number of rounds through it. Considering I've read countless threads on Baers working perfectly right out of the box, if I happen to be an unlucky one that gets a lemon, I refuse to put $500 worth of ammo through a gun before it's considered defective to the manufacturer.

    Calling the Springfield Custom Shop was a refreshingly pleasant experience. I talked to Dave the first time and got some general information. He was very helpful and enthusiastic. I called back a second time a few hours later and spoke with a very nice lady named Deb. I asked her some questions about some of the custom options I was considering and she was very knowledgeable and helpful. She even offered to email me pictures of a frame that had the undercut trigger guard feature I was considering. All in all, it was a very pleasant experience!

    So here's a run-down of what I ordered:

    -Custom Carry 1911 (full-size) - $1495

    -Heinie LEDGE Straight-8 night sights (Heinie cut) - $260

    -Black T finish (complete pistol) - $195

    -30 LPI front strap checkering (hand cut) - $250

    -Undercut front strap for high-hand grip - $75

    -Serrate rear of slide to match Heinie sight serrations - $75

    TOTAL: $2350

    The only thing I'm iffy about is the rear slide serrations. My thought was that it will provide a better sight picture by blending in with the Heinie serrations, making it easier for my eyes to focus on the front sight. However, I've never actually handled a 1911 with this setup. I'm worried that I might be wasting $75 and possibly overdoing it. My goal was a no-frills, functional "fighting" pistol. Are rear slide serrations considered a "frill?" What do you guys think?

    Oh yeah...and now the wait begins! :eek: I was told 8-12 months. I'm afraid it's not going to be easy...
     
  15. CPshooter

    CPshooter Member

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    Here are the pictures of the cut they are going to make under the trigger guard for a "high hand grip." Has anyone had experience with this type of undercut? If so, how does it feel and is it comfortable?

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  16. rklessdriver

    rklessdriver Member

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    CPshooter-
    That undercut is the same cut that COLT uses on it's enhanced pistols.

    I personally like it.
    Will
     
  17. Shipwreck

    Shipwreck Member

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    I have rear slide serrations on that full rail operator - They are nice. When paired with a rear sight that is serrated too, it looks sweet. I'd keep that option if I were you.
     
  18. kamagong

    kamagong Member

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    If you want to save money I'd keep the serrated slide and go for machine cut checkering instead of the hand cut.
     
  19. CPshooter

    CPshooter Member

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    Thanks guys. I'll probably stick with the rear slide serrations.

    kamagong- While on the phone with Deb, I made sure to ask what the difference was between hand-cut and machine-cut checkering before I spent the extra $$. I was told that they will feel the same, but machine-cut checkering tends to leave "uneven lines that might run too far upwards towards the trigger guard." She made an analogy to an "uneven picket fence." I've actually noticed this on quite a few 1911s just from looking at pics online and wondered why they were like that.

    I was told that if I want an absolutely perfect checkering job with "every single square coming to a perfect and symmetrical point" I would need a hand-cut checkering job, which takes much more time and care to perform.

    Saving money is always a good thing, but when I'm already spending $2k + on a handgun, what's an extra $110 to make it perfect? :)
     
  20. CPshooter

    CPshooter Member

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    Anyone know approximately how much the Baer Custom Carry would cost?

    I called Baer directly and they said the price of $1830 listed on their website is retail price and I would have to order through a dealer. I don't have a clue how much a dealer would charge for this gun. I tried calling John @ Proload because I've been told they are a great dealer to work with, but nobody is answering the phone.

    I'm asking because I'm tempted to just go with the Baer instead due to the fact that the wait time is only 4 months instead of up to 1 year with the Springfield.:uhoh:
     
  21. ttheel

    ttheel Member

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    I would also be tempted to go with the Baer for the price. You can order the Custom Carrry from Impact guns for 1995.00. You may can do even better than that from a local dealer. Here is a link to the gun at Impact guns.
    http://www.impactguns.com/store/LBP9001.html
     
  22. kamagong

    kamagong Member

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    Give Becky a call at www.sportingarms.com She also has good prices, better than the $1995 at Impact Guns.
     
  23. ttheel

    ttheel Member

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  24. Supertac45

    Supertac45 Member

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    I'd get the Baer. Made in the U.S.A., and not Brazil to start with.
     
  25. benderx4

    benderx4 Member

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    I got my Baer TRS from Becky at SportingArms.com and they are great to deal with. No doubt they could hook you up.
     
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