I own a Les Baer Super Varmint Master and found it to be superb. I am now deciding which 1911 to buy. Base on my experience with the SVM and that I have been to the Les Baer factory and watched their 1911's being made, I have a bias toward them.....but not totally decided (meaning I will change my mind for the right reasons).
I am considering Baers' 1911 Premier II. The purpose of firearm will primary be home defense, but I hope to do some competition shooting in the future. BTW when I purchase a firearm, reliability and accuracy are the most important criteria (even though some may not consider the SVM to be reliable compared to other AR's which can take the dirt, etc., it is reliable for it's intended purpose).
Any thoughts on the following would be appreciated:
1. Is this the right LB 1911 for my intended use?
2. What are some alternatives to the Premier II, either other LB's or manufacturers?
3. If I choose the LB, should I get a .400 Cor-Bon drop-in barrel as an extra?
4. Would a 5" or 6" barrel be the best choice?
Any other comment would also be appreciated.
Springfield Milspec. Shoot it for 1200 rounds, replce a couple springs, shoot it for 1200 more rounds, and then decide what type of "improvements" you want and have an expert like Hilton Yam do the work.
a friend of my Has A Les Bauer 1911, but his Colt Commander LW gets shot alot more, and right now he is looking for a Milspec.
I own a Les Baer Concept IV pistol and have used it for almost 3 years now.
Les makes the best custom 1911's I have ever come across. I like them better than Wilson's guns.
I have fired several thousand rounds through the pistol and have experienced 1 jam, and that was on round 3 of the initial breakin period of 300 rounds. (It was a stovepipe)
1. The premier II is a good gun, but any of the Baer 1911's should suit your needs. I am fond of 3 dot night sights so this would be an attractive model. But the concept pistols are a bit cheaper for the exact same quality and attention to detail.
In general any steel-framed 5 inch 1911 should be ideal for defense and competition. They can also be concealed quite easily in a good Blade-Tech IWB holster.
2. The concept series of pistols are good alternatives to the Premier as they are a skosh cheaper, but all of the Baer 1911's are made to the same high standards. Just pick the one with the features you want most.
I picked the Concept IV because I wanted the 2 tone finish, fixed sights (which are perfectly sighted in, by the way), and a checkered frontstrap. The Concept IV had all these features, so I bought it.
3. If you like the .400 cor-bon, then go ahead. I am perfectly happy with my .45ACP. I don't need anything else.
4. A 5 inch barrel is the best option if you intend to use the gun for defense. A full sized 1911 is heavy anyway, so you really don't need to add more weight. It is also easier to cram 5 inches of barrel into your pants than 6 inches. Holster selection for 5" guns is also vastly superior to a 6" gun.
The Les Baer gun I bought is THE best pistol I have ever purchased. And I have owned dang near all of em at one time or another. It is far more accurate than I will ever be, and is absolutely reliable. I wish all my guns were as reliable as my Baer.
The finish on the gun is really beat up, but years of daily carry and surviving a rough course at Blackwater will do that to a pistol. (I lent my LB to a guy whose Gold Cup busted during the course. Even when caked in mud and with more mud in the action than lube, the thing still ran like a charm. That guy, a professional military operator, now owns a Les Baer and carries it on his adventures. Nuff said...)
They are great guns. And if something does go wrong, (which is unlikely) you can call up Les himself and get an answer. He stands behind his products.
1911's are good guns, but only when built correctly. I owned Springfields and hated them. The ones I owned were horridly unreliable and wouldn't even feed hardball ammo right. Others have had better experiences.
One thing is for sure. A Les Baer 1911 will run and Les will stand behind it.
They are tighter than hell and you don't think they will run, but they do. I love mine. It is the one pistol I own that I would trust my life to without question or hesitation.
The Springfield milspec is a bargain, but it sure ain't no Les Baer. I own five Baer 1911s and they are all winners. I have owned several other 1911s and now only have the Baer's. They are all pretty much the same basic pistol. Accuracy is superb. I would consider the Thunder Ranch Special if you don't have anything definite in mind. It has all that is really needed and nothing else. Watch-Six
I like the Premiers and will eventually pick one up. The adjustable sights are nice to have especially if you intend to shoot matches.
I wouldn't spend any money on the .400 Corbon barrel. .45 will do everything you need out of a 1911, and is much cheaper to practice with.
The Valtro 1911's are getting kudos recently, and they are in the same price range as many of the LB's. Also Ed Brown makes the Kobra, which is also supposed to be excellent. Still, I prefer the aesthetics of the Baer over either, and for that kind of money you shouldn't be stuck with an ugly gun.
I stay away from the 6" guns on principle. Parts and accessories are harder to come by, and the extra inch of barrel won't do much for ballistics. The extra sight radius is nice, but that's about it.
Thanks to all who replied...very helpful. Still leaning toward the LB.
Dangles, that is a VERY fine pistol you have there. I shudder to think what you may have paid for it.