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Posted: 10/28/2006 5:07:14 PM EST
I went to the Gunshop today and saw a used Para CCW and a new SA GI for about the same price. I'm thinking of taking one of them home. Which would be the better buy and why?
What's the track record (reliability, fixing or maintenance) for these two guns?

Looking for opinions or first hand experience with the Para. I've searched other forums and have not seen many comments on this particular model. Any thoughts good or bad would be appreciated.
Link Posted: 10/28/2006 5:13:01 PM EST
I'm a big fan of the GI. It's a good pistol out of the box, and later you can use it as a platform for a custom gun. Mine took about 200 rounds to break in and become reliable. I also put a heavy spring in. Now it's 100%. I honestly have heard some bad things about Paras, but I've never shot one.
Link Posted: 10/28/2006 6:07:30 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/29/2006 9:07:14 AM EST
Thanks for the replies.
How much more cash would I need to replace/tune up the GI or Para for reliability? Such as springs, mags and anything else that I might need. Would I have to take it to a gunsmith or can I work on it myself?
Does the Para use the same parts (spings, barrels, mags etc.) as a 1911?
Link Posted: 10/29/2006 9:29:07 AM EST

Originally Posted By MadRich:
Thanks for the replies.
How much more cash would I need to replace/tune up the GI or Para for reliability? Such as springs, mags and anything else that I might need. Would I have to take it to a gunsmith or can I work on it myself?
Does the Para use the same parts (spings, barrels, mags etc.) as a 1911?


GI would be my choice as well. It should be 100% reliable about of the box. SA's are put together pretty well. Only thing I would do it a reliability package from a good smith. Most have a package put together of the most common tuning/polishing combinations to increase reliability. You may want to run some Novak (my favorite 8rd mag) or Wilson 7rd mags if you have any feed issues. I don't recommend 8rd Wilson mags because they are really hard to seat when loaded and I don't like the desigh, the Novaks are actually designed to be 8rd mags and they work better because of it.
Link Posted: 10/29/2006 11:54:52 AM EST

Originally Posted By MadRich:
Does the Para use the same parts (spings, barrels, mags etc.) as a 1911?


Not exactly. Unless they changed thier line over the years, the CCW was an LDA, which only uses some 1911 parts. The LDA frame will accept standard mags, but most people can't/won't work on them. The top side (slide) is similar to a series 80 Colt, so that stuff is interchangable. Para also uses a ramped barrel.
Link Posted: 10/29/2006 4:20:55 PM EST
Go with the SA.
Haven't owned a Para, but I've been told their reliability is hit or miss.
YMMV
Link Posted: 10/30/2006 10:29:10 AM EST
Thanks for the input fellas...
After more research, I've decided to save more pennies and look for a Colt Commander, I like the size and balance. This is my first 1911, definately not my last, but will be my only one for a long time...
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