From my 1911 exported friends...
I know there is another thread dealing with preferred brands, but I would like to get input from a smaller, more elite group of experts with life's experience about what 1911 you like best. Share as you wish whether it is simply one 1911 or multiple depending on circumstances. I have loved the 1911 since I new what one was, and I'm endeavoring to learn more about this phenomenal platform. My interests lie mainly for defense purposes, but not limited to strictly carrying one. Of course, a lot of competition practices spill over into the defense realm, so please share anything you feel relevant.
Thanks in advance for your time!
BTW, the title is supposed to read EXPERTED, not exported. Auto correct... :-/
There's a lot of ground to cover in "what I like best" context is huge.
For the most part I like 5" Gov't profiled guns chambered in
.45ACP. I like Springfield TRPs and their Custom Shop guns, Wilsons and Nighthawks. I might get my hands on an Ed Brown one day.
I like good durable finishes and Heinie sights.
I like VZ G10 grip panels.
I like Wilson magazines
I like bushing barrels
I like G I plug and sprig guides as opposed to full length guide rods when applicable.
I like textured front straps
I like a nicely fitted beaver tail.
It is said Chris Kyle used a Springfield TRP for a while in the field. It is a good looking gun! I don't know much about the Nighthawks. What do you like about them?
I doubt very much that he used a TRP while serving but it's possible. SEALS have the 226 as a general issue pistol as well as others based on needs of mission such as the HK Mk23 and 45c. They have a Walther PPQ variant as well if I recall. ..
As or Nighthawk the put out a nice quality product and have good attention to detail. Lately I think they have kind of lost some of their mojo with their line of collaboration guns etc. But when I had my gun built by then I was impressed with every bit of the process.
He said in his book that he used the TRP on a few missions until it was damaged in an explosion, then used the P220 b/c he was not a fan of the 9mm.
Originally Posted by VAMarine
I haven't heard much about Nighthawk recently, but I know they were strong a few years ago. Same with Para Ordinance. Not sure why they sort of faded from the marketing realm, but I just don't see much of either anymore.
Nighthawk is higher end so there's less talk. Very few dealers carry them and I've been told that Wilson has better price breaks for dealers.
As for a Para....there's a couple of reasons that I'll go over later....
I personally like the 45 acp. The 1911 has a great trigger along with the position of the safety (the downward motion of the safety feels very natural).
When the first shot is the only shot you're gonna have, I'll choose my 1911.
A 9mm might expand but a 45 will never shrink.
Para has never been a major player in the 1911 market. They had some nice niche offerings in their double stacks and LDA models but they could never keep their catalogue consistent and to add insult to injury they went and did some stupid design / features ideas that never went over well.
The "Grasping Grooves", crappy Parakote finish, and Power Extractor (PXT) were pretty big flops.
Mixed with some varying levels of QC issues they started loosing what bit of market share they had.
Last year they started turning some things around but who knows if it will be enough or a case of too little too late.
I just heard a rumor that Remington might absorb them in their entirety after being purchased the Freedom Group...
Now back to what I like in a 1911.
I like inertia firing pin safeties as opposed to mechanical ones.
Depending on what exact parts and purpose I like ambi safeties but they aren't a must have.
I like steel frames.
I like the Ed Brown Bobtail feature or the newer "Round-butt" offerings.
I like Dan Wessons
In lower cost brackets I like the Rock Island pistols. They have a pretty good rep.
I have a love / hate relationship with Colt. If they don't tank they might just start putting out guns I'm happy with out of the box. I just wish they'd do a little more dehorn work on their guns.
VA, if there was only one 1911 you could have, which would you choose?
I shudder to think of such a thing....
Probably Wilson Combat.
I've been looking at them, and they are quite nice.
I have two identical 1911s that were built for me by a gunsmith who was also a close friend.
Alas, he is now long gone to his well-merited reward.
One of them started life as a Colt's Series 70, and the other is a "parts gun" on an Essex frame and slide.
Both are "hard chromed," with squared trigger-guards and 3.5-pound, long triggers, pinned grip safeties, ambidextrous thumb safties, lowered-and-flared ejection ports, collet barrel bushings, "rowel" hammers, big and thick sights, and a few other "mods and prods."
The same guy built me an Officers'-Model-size, all-steel carry piece, also based upon Essex parts, with the same modifications as my two competition pistols. It's blued, rather than chromed.
This information is probably of no use to you, since the guns are old and their maker is dead, but my list of modifications might be of some service.
I suggest that it requires a few years of hard practice and use, to allow you to make meaningful decisions about what modifications are best for you.
Thanks, Steve. I appreciate your input. Time is the one thing I intend to put in to this study, which is partly why I've posed this question to those, like you, who have extensive experience with these guns. You can't just read this stuff on line and gain the personal input on this level.
Would any of you be willing to take the Springfield Mil-Spec 1911 into combat or on the street as a carry gun?
I carry a plain Jane 1911a1 A few minor modifications done like 3 lb trigger pull a little polishing. I keep the standard sights on it because I know they will stay put, I am very active and want one that can take what ever I dish out. I have one 1911a1 that I can bulleyes target with but it is not for carry. I know I am old school on my carry pistol but it works for me.
I've never had one in my own hands. I only know about it from the gun mags.
Originally Posted by GCBHM
As long as the pistol functions reliably, I see no reason why it should not prove appropriate for self-defensive concealed carry.
A polished feed ramp is nice, but it's unnecessary if you're shooting FMJ Ball ammunition.
The tiny sights of the original 1911 and 1911A1 military-issue versions do not cause difficulty at close range, assuming some modicum of practice. One just learns to use the silhouette of the rear-end of the pistol as one's alignment tool, rather than its sights.
The frame shape and long trigger of the 1911, and the scalloped frame and shorter trigger of the 1911A1, can both be easily coped-with. The arched mainspring housing of the 1911A1 would require some extra practice, and I wouldn't like using it in any case, but I certainly could use it.
The standard 1911 ejection port works quite well. The lowered and flared ejection port merely saves wear-and-tear on the brass, for reloading.
I would miss most a crisper trigger action. I can cope with a weighty trigger, although my choice would be pressure lower than four pounds.
The most difficult part of a pistol to conceal is its handle. The standard-size 1911 has a large, blocky handle that is hard to conceal. Nevertheless, it can certainly be done, and I (and many others) have successfully done it.
The mil spec is a very nice piece, I like the shorter safety verses the extended lever bar version , I think the longer bar safety on some other 1911's makes it easier to unknowingly trip off the safety.
The traditional safety ,I find also fits the thumbbreak holsters that I prefer for the cocked n locked carry.
One negative I hear about the Springfield mil spec is they could be tough on your hand webbing (between the thumb and forefinger)sometimes causes actual bleeding.
A friend of mine loves his mil spec, but he bleeds every time he shoots numerous rounds through the gun. I also heard about this online.
Last edited by pic; 11-29-2014 at 01:11 PM.
Why wouldn't he resolve this issue by simply installing a beavertail grip safety? My Para Ordnance P14-45 had the same sort of narrow tang on it as the mil spec, and it would bite the hand that feeds it every time I took it to the range. A beavertail safety is cheap, and the install is super easy.
Originally Posted by pic
If that's the fix? I'm with you.
Originally Posted by DirtyDog
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