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1911 Aficionados Step Inside Please....Advice Needed

10canyon5310canyon53 MemberPosts: 2,071 Senior Member
My daughter's boyfriend is looking for a carry pistol (his first) and likes 1911's....and is looking for my advice.  What would be a decent quality entry level, reasonably compact 1911 to look at?  Nothing fancy, no frills, and at his budget I think he will need to consider used, not new.  So, let's say under $500......I have already advised him against Taurus.  I know there have been some not well known brands mentioned here before that were considered by some to be decent quality but lower cost but those brand names have slipped my mind.  Also, any brands to avoid.....
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Replies

  • JKPJKP Senior Member Posts: 2,232 Senior Member
    edited May 29 #2
    My first derailing question would be why a 1911 for a first carry gun?

    IMHO a 1911 isn't the ideal carry piece. Glock or other quality striker fired guns are far better for carry in my opinion. 

    I know fire is incoming on my position...
  • JKPJKP Senior Member Posts: 2,232 Senior Member
    But if a 1911 is needed look at the Ruger SR1911 commander size used. 
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 23,550 Senior Member
    I’d look at Rock Island Armory. A little rough (Sharp) around the edges, but I like their options and have heard good things about them. Just might need to Soften some of the sharp edges. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,071 Senior Member
    JKP said:
    My first derailing question would be why a 1911 for a first carry gun?

    I do intend to have that discussion with him and see how important he thinks that is for him.  I am also going to recommend he look at 9mm instead of .45 since it will be his first.  Still very early in the dialog, my daughter sprang it on me a little over an hour ago.  He works for Disney and due to the COVID-19 furlough is currently back home in Alabama.  He will be back here by the end of June, so if he has not bought something by then I intend to take him to the range and evaluate his skill-set.  He could possibly find a good used Kimber Micro 9 in his price range and he could shoot my wife's to see how it works for him.
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,071 Senior Member
    Zee said:
    I’d look at Rock Island Armory. A little rough (Sharp) around the edges, but I like their options and have heard good things about them. Just might need to Soften some of the sharp edges. 
    Thanks, I thought that was one of the brands mentioned that was decent quality without breaking the bank.
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,763 Senior Member
    edited May 29 #7
    Rock Island ,ATI , and MetroArms all make good entry level 1911s,

    But...I hesitate to recommend a 1911 as a primary carry gun for a
    new/novice handgunner UNLESS
    they are willing to train to learn the ins and outs of the platform
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • GunNutGunNut Posts: 5,287 Senior Member
    edited May 29 #8
    Second on the Rock Island.  I don’t own one (yet) but the ones I’ve handled/shot have been quality guns.  Several folks here are very happy with theirs.

    Also Kimber just came out with an aluminum framed full size 1911 (Stainless LW) that is selling very well and I’m seeing a few with a street price of around $599.   It comes with every feature you want including nice fiber optic front sight.  I’m a big Kimber fan and all my full size 1911s are all steel so this one has been getting my attention lately.  My Kimber Pro (Commander size) is one of the most accurate guns I’ve ever owned and I LOVE my Ultra Raptor.
    Old West Saying: God created men, but Col. Sam Colt made them equal.

    General George Patton:  “Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.”

  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,071 Senior Member
    Jayhawker said:

    But...I hesitate to recommend a 1911 as a primary carry gun for a
    new/novice handgunner UNLESS
    they are willing train to learn the ins and outs of the platform
    I agree!  The way my daughter sprang it on me was texting me an ad for a Taurus Commander 1911 and asking what I thought.....I haven't had a chance to talk to him directly about it yet.  I think his attraction to the 1911 at the moment is the way they look.  We'll see how long that lasts once I get ahold of him.  :D  On the plus side I think he actually values my opinion....
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,071 Senior Member
    GunNut said:
    Second on the Rock Island.  I don’t own one (yet) but the ones I’ve handled/shot have been quality guns.  Several folks here are very happy with theirs.

    Also Kimber just came out with an aluminum framed full size 1911 than I’m seeing with a street price of around $599.  I’m a big Kimber fan.
    I will definitely take a look at Rock Island.  After handling and shooting my wife's Kimber Micro 9 I am a Kimber fan as well.  The Ultra Carry II is at the top of my handgun want list at the moment.
  • GunNutGunNut Posts: 5,287 Senior Member
    GunNut said:
    Second on the Rock Island.  I don’t own one (yet) but the ones I’ve handled/shot have been quality guns.  Several folks here are very happy with theirs.

    Also Kimber just came out with an aluminum framed full size 1911 than I’m seeing with a street price of around $599.  I’m a big Kimber fan.
    I will definitely take a look at Rock Island.  After handling and shooting my wife's Kimber Micro 9 I am a Kimber fan as well.  The Ultra Carry II is at the top of my handgun want list at the moment.
    I bought one of the first Ultra Carry 1911s Kimber made (3 digit serial number pre-II) and it was so nice my wife confiscated it and is her gun.  Since them I’ve owned a few other Ultra examples, all of them superb guns. Currently my EDC of that size is my Ultra Raptor with custom elephant Ivory grips.  My wife gave it to me for my 60th birthday and it is a hell of a nice gun.



    Old West Saying: God created men, but Col. Sam Colt made them equal.

    General George Patton:  “Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.”

  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,387 Senior Member
    edited May 29 #12
    JKP said:
    My first derailing question would be why a 1911 for a first carry gun?

    IMHO a 1911 isn't the ideal carry piece. Glock or other quality striker fired guns are far better for carry in my opinion. 

    I know fire is incoming on my position...

    I'm with you on that JKP.

    One question 10 Canyon, is he in love with 1911s or just 45s?
    If he just wants a 45 tell him to look at the Glock 30. It's more of a carry size and it's a 45. My son in law is the sheriff here and his favorite duty weapon is his Glock 30. He also conceal carrys it when he's off duty.

    Now for real concealed carry I recommend a Glock 26 or any of their smaller sized guns. I now carry a Glock 43 and I love it. I'm ordering a +4 Magazine Extension which will give it a 10 round magazine capacity, and still fit in my pocket holster. Also, the +4 sticks down a little farther and gives you a little more to hang on to.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,152 Senior Member
    Gun breaks holster and pivots level, safety goes down.  Gun about to pivot down to reholster, safety goes on.  Booger hook stays off the bang switch until ready to shoot, just like anything else.  1911's are just like Glocks with one extra control - IOW, not that hard.

    Ruger Commander very good value, as is Rock Island.  I would look to TRUE Commander clones, with GI type barrel bushings and recoil spring plugs.  Most all of what goes shorter than a 4.25" barrel gets into weird disassembly requiring paper clips or other assisting gadgets.  To hell with that.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • GunNutGunNut Posts: 5,287 Senior Member
    edited May 29 #14
    Bigslug said:
    Gun breaks holster and pivots level, safety goes down.  Gun about to pivot down to reholster, safety goes on.  Booger hook stays off the bang switch until ready to shoot, just like anything else.  1911's are just like Glocks with one extra control - IOW, not that hard.

    Ruger Commander very good value, as is Rock Island.  I would look to TRUE Commander clones, with GI type barrel bushings and recoil spring plugs.  Most all of what goes shorter than a 4.25" barrel gets into weird disassembly requiring paper clips or other assisting gadgets.  To hell with that.
    I’m with brother Slug.  Never understood why folks think this is complicated...  Plus there’s the added advantage of not shooting your ass or nuts if you screw up and leave your finger on the trigger while reholstering 😁
    Old West Saying: God created men, but Col. Sam Colt made them equal.

    General George Patton:  “Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.”

  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 6,748 Senior Member
    Two guys walk into a gun forum. One says hey what's a good 1911?

    Someone says hey get a Glock!

    Another one says hey whats wrong with 1911s?

    Hey you could shoot your toe off!

    No that's your eye out!

    No that's a Daisy Red Ryder!

    Both guys go home with a new BB gun???
     :D 
  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 10,664 Senior Member
    A long time ago, we had a member that shot himself in the leg reholstering a Kimber Raptor.  If he had followed the steps and put the safety on first it never would have happened.  I carried a SS Colt Combat Commander for a long time.  Never once felt unsafe carrying it, however I found it to be a little difficult to cary wearing shorts, t-shirt and flipflops which is my normal after work/weekend dress.  I scaled down to a SW Shield which i still carry today.
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,763 Senior Member
    edited May 29 #17
    For a person who has been handling 1911s for years handling one is second nature......don't even have to think about it....

    But like any handgun...there is a learning curve and for some reason, that thumb safety thing can be a problem...which is probably why for so many years military 1911s were carried in a full flap holster with the hammer down on an empty chamber.

    Had a friend who took to carrying a 1911 in a Bianchi shoulder rig...which is an open front holster.
    Then he had the bright idea of installing a trigger shoe instead of paying for a trigger job. And here's what followed:
    After a shooting session he goes to return the cocked and locked handgun to the holster...
    He is gripping the bottom of the holster with his left hand...cupping the bottom of the holster with his fingers.
    He inserts the barrel into the bottom of the holster.
    He is still depressing the grip safety as he rotates the handgun into the holster, which knocks the grip safety off.
    He shoves the pistol down to seat it into the holster, trigger shoe grabs the side of the holster and it discharges...sending a 230 grain hardball through the bottom of the holster, between his fingers and unzips the seam of his jeans.
    He ends up with a wicked burn down his leg from his waist to his knee...and damp underwear.......
    Probably could have been worse...


    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • Elk creekElk creek Senior Member Posts: 6,422 Senior Member
    I carried a Kimber Custom II 1911 for duty. I carried rain, shine, snow, rolling around on the ground with a drunk homeless ass hat and any other situation you can imagine a cop getting into including one trip into a hot tub. With that said if I was going to do it again it would be a Glock. Nevertheless with proper training and living life “brain on” a 1911 is a perfectly safe firearm. Neglect it or get sloppy with it or carry it in a crap holster it will end badly. The only caveat is you have to train with a 1911 until it’s second nature. 
    Aim higher, or get a bigger gun.
  • Elk creekElk creek Senior Member Posts: 6,422 Senior Member
    Oh by the way, after the trip into the hot tub I traded out all my Ammo and ruined one radio. I shot the ammo the next day without one misfire.
    Aim higher, or get a bigger gun.
  • GunNutGunNut Posts: 5,287 Senior Member
    Oh I need to hear this hot tub story unedited 🤣🤣🤣
    Old West Saying: God created men, but Col. Sam Colt made them equal.

    General George Patton:  “Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.”

  • Elk creekElk creek Senior Member Posts: 6,422 Senior Member
    GunNut said:
    Oh I need to hear this hot tub story unedited 🤣🤣🤣
    It’s not as funny as you think. There’s a reason I didn’t take off anything to go in after someone. 
    Aim higher, or get a bigger gun.
  • TugarTugar Senior Member Posts: 2,204 Senior Member
    There is a chance, albeit a small one that some 1911's like the Rock Island can slam fire from inertia when you lock the slide back, insert a loaded mag, and hit the slide release, it can slam fire. Again rare but better safe than sorry. Always have it pointed in safe direction.

    Most of the newer Colts and other do have a block that prevents that but not all as there are SO many 1911 makers now it's hard to keep up. To test that. Take an UNLOADED 1911. Make sure the it cocked, with the the grip safety engaged, try pressing the the back of the firing pin on the end the slide where it meets the hammer ( A pen works). If it moves....it can. Not that it will but the potential is there. 
    Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
    Winston Churchill
  • N454casullN454casull Member Posts: 537 Senior Member
    I have a Springfield micro compact 1911 don’t like it much and so it’s pretty much a safe queen. It’s hard to shot and the recoil isn’t pleasant and it’s hard to control for quick follow up shots. I have 2 Rock island armory 1911 I love them both. One is a 10mm the other a .45 both function perfectly and the fit and finish is spot on. I took the 10mm to a family shoot one Christmas and my nephew was very much questioning his choice of a Wilson Combat. Rock island makes a single stack 9mm commander 1911 that I have heard many a good thing about.
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 20,875 Senior Member
    My 10mm is a RIA, I like it

    If he's wanting it for a carry gun, I might suggest a lightweight. Unfortunately Big Green bought and absorbed Para. Their LW Commanders were nice (My carry 1911)

    https://www.budsgunshop.com/product_info.php/products_id/35204/rock+island+armory+51857+rock+ultra+cco+45+acp+425%22

    https://www.budsgunshop.com/product_info.php/products_id/90787/remington+96336+r1+commander+7%2b1+45+acp+425%22

    $21 dollars difference between the RIA and the REM. Compare features and see which he likes best.
    I'd go with the RIA for the Adj rear and Fiber optic front sight
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,071 Senior Member
    If I had known this thread was going to be this much fun I would have started it sooner.  :D
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,071 Senior Member
    snake284 said:

    One question 10 Canyon, is he in love with 1911s or just 45s?

    That is a question I will be asking him.  My daughter thinks he would be open to a 9mm.  She says he likes the "older styles" (her words).  I suspect it is driven by looks, not experience.

  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,071 Senior Member
    Here is a gun I ran across on guns.com that I have heard mentioned before but do not know anything about.  Can someone educate me, good, bad, indifferent?


  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,152 Senior Member
    Two guys walk into a gun forum. One says hey what's a good 1911?

    Someone says hey get a Glock!

    Another one says hey whats wrong with 1911s?. . .
    Which I've always found funny because I've come to the conclusion that if you're carrying a  bigger-than-pocket centerfire handgun that is something other than a 1911, a Glock, or a revolver, you're wasting your time. :D
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 7,762 Senior Member
    I'm a big 1911 fan, but found them to large for comfortable CC. I got a Springfield XDS .45 and love it!! Easy to carry, accurate and in your price range!!
    https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=xds+45&&view=detail&mid=7ED7C81AE43664DC2D987ED7C81AE43664DC2D98&&FORM=VRDGAR&ru=/videos/search?q=xds+45&FORM=HDRSC3

  • SpkSpk Senior Member Posts: 3,861 Senior Member
    Jayhawker said:
    ...

    Had a friend who took to carrying a 1911 in a Bianchi shoulder rig...which is an open front holster.
    Then he had the bright idea of installing a trigger shoe instead of paying for a trigger job. And here's what followed:
    After a shooting session he goes to return the cocked and locked handgun to the holster...
    He is gripping the bottom of the holster with his left hand...cupping the bottom of the holster with his fingers.
    He inserts the barrel into the bottom of the holster.
    He is still depressing the grip safety as he rotates the handgun into the holster, which knocks the grip safety off.
    He shoves the pistol down to seat it into the holster, trigger shoe grabs the side of the holster and it discharges...sending a 230 grain hardball through the bottom of the holster, between his fingers and unzips the seam of his jeans.
    He ends up with a wicked burn down his leg from his waist to his knee...and damp underwear.......
    Probably could have been worse...



    Dumb has it's own learning curve but some folks have been practicing for years.

    I love the 1911 design in full and Commander sizes. Smaller than that I'm thinking a new shooter would be better served with a Striker fired model.

    One more thing, if you're gonna buy used -- gun store, know the guarantee and return policy. Ask the shoot it, if that's possible. Too many dang armchair experimentalist (I refuse to call them armchair gunsmiths). Anyway, they buy a gun, make it better (actually destroy, can't fix it) then sell it cause it sucks. Buyer beware.
    Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience -- Mark Twain
    How easy it is to make people believe a lie, and [how] hard it is to undo that work again! -- Mark Twain

  • GunNutGunNut Posts: 5,287 Senior Member
    Jayhawker said:
    For a person who has been handling 1911s for years handling one is second nature......don't even have to think about it....

    But like any handgun...there is a learning curve and for some reason, that thumb safety thing can be a problem...which is probably why for so many years military 1911s were carried in a full flap holster with the hammer down on an empty chamber.

    Had a friend who took to carrying a 1911 in a Bianchi shoulder rig...which is an open front holster.
    Then he had the bright idea of installing a trigger shoe instead of paying for a trigger job. And here's what followed:
    After a shooting session he goes to return the cocked and locked handgun to the holster...
    He is gripping the bottom of the holster with his left hand...cupping the bottom of the holster with his fingers.
    He inserts the barrel into the bottom of the holster.
    He is still depressing the grip safety as he rotates the handgun into the holster, which knocks the grip safety off.
    He shoves the pistol down to seat it into the holster, trigger shoe grabs the side of the holster and it discharges...sending a 230 grain hardball through the bottom of the holster, between his fingers and unzips the seam of his jeans.
    He ends up with a wicked burn down his leg from his waist to his knee...and damp underwear.......
    Probably could have been worse...


    Absolutely the WORST holster design for a 1911.  It’s like it’s specifically designed to screw the pooch.  My thumb is always FIRMLY pushing the safety UP during my holstering of my 1911s. It’s just ingrained in muscle memory.
    Old West Saying: God created men, but Col. Sam Colt made them equal.

    General George Patton:  “Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.”

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