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Posted: 12/25/2012 8:14:45 AM EDT
Looking at getting my first 1911 and second handgun(I have a walther ppq). I'm just trying to get some input on what to buy for my first one. I don't want the fanciest one but something like an ria I think would be a good first one. And I was thinking about the 3.5 inch one in 9mm possibly since I own a 9 already but i f thats a bad idea I have no problem buying a 45. Also open to other options. I would like to be under 600 for this one but might budge if I found the right deal.
Link Posted: 12/25/2012 9:57:55 AM EDT
Does anyone have one of the rock island armory 3.5 inch in the 9mm over 45 that can chime in with some input as I think that is what I'm going to get. And I'm thinking about using it as a ccw also.
Link Posted: 12/25/2012 4:24:44 PM EDT
Personally, I would vote against getting the 3-1/2" bbl 1911 for your first 1911, IMO. These guns are known to be finicky & not easy to shoot accurately (regardless of maker).

For your first 1911 I would strongly urge you to go with a Springfield Armory 1911 5" Govt model for multiple reasons.

1) Quality for the $. Unless you get into the $1,000+ range of 1911s, SA is hands down the brand to go with.

2) Customer Service. Should you ever need warranty work, SA is known as among THE best in the bidness. End of story.

3) Resale value. SA holds their values well. Colt may have the edge in this catagory, but SA has the edge in quality control.

4) Availibility. SA's can usually be easily had, with a few exceptions.

There's also nothing wrong with buying gently used. Quite often one can score a higher tiered 1911 gently used for what one would get a new lower tiered one. Just be sure to buy one that's NOT been worked on, no matter who the seller claims did the work. After all, YOU have no way of knowing if he's telling the truth on this or not. Get one in 100% factory OEM condition or pass on it, IMO.

Good luck!

My .o2
Link Posted: 12/25/2012 5:57:57 PM EDT
I wouldnt go as far as saying they have an edge in anything but customer service. I see the same issues from them as with other manufacturers and more so with extractor tension. thats just my opinion.
buy what you feel you really want but for a first 1911 but I wouldnt go with a ultra compact model. your odds of getting one with issues is greater than with a full size models.
Link Posted: 12/25/2012 6:52:33 PM EDT
My reasoning for the compact was for carry over my ppq and the ria only has two sizes and I always here good things about them. But if that is the case what about an officer sized model in 9mm or 45
Link Posted: 12/25/2012 8:10:38 PM EDT
I have a couple officer sized that run 100% but I still cary a full size 90% of the time. A good belt and holster are worth their weight in gold if you ask me.
Link Posted: 12/25/2012 11:58:32 PM EDT
Well then I won't rule out the full size model either
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 4:05:30 AM EDT
Full size 1911 in .45 ACP. No need to mess with a design that's been in service for over a hundred years Sorry I can't recommend a particular modern brand because I'm still running a Colt M1991A1 my father bought 20 years ago.
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 7:53:49 AM EDT
How difficult is carrying one because I have a hard time not printing with the handle on my ppq
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 4:29:49 PM EDT
Does anyone have a list or know which ones would be in my price range of 650 or so lower the better if possible and maybe some features that I should be looking for
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 5:25:39 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 05gpgt2:
How difficult is carrying one because I have a hard time not printing with the handle on my ppq


One of the (my) hardest lessons to learn in beginning one's CCW usage is that you HAVE to adjust your wardrobe! You simply cannot just throw on what you'd normally wear & expect to go on with your CCW life.

For example, one's pants will need to be one size larger is you use a IWB holster. Shirts need to be either longer or one size larger in order to hide the grip frame on a full-size pistol.

Yes, it's a PITA to add to one's wardrobe, but you don't need to change everything at once. Not to mention, Goodwill has some good buys............
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 5:34:23 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 05gpgt2:
Does anyone have a list or know which ones would be in my price range of 650 or so lower the better if possible and maybe some features that I should be looking for


Sights would be *my* #1 priority in selecting a basic 1911. Everything else is adaptable, IMO. For example, Springfield's WW2 model has HORRIBLE sights, but many people use this gun as a base to build on. Others (such as yourself) looking for a basic 1911 with a decent set-up from the start look at the Springfield Mil-Spec. The latter model already has 3-dot sights & flared & lowered (IIRC) ejection port. Either model should easily be had for under $650, IMO.

You should hit Springfield's web site & cruise thru their 1911 offerings. Look at their MSRP pricing & figure on real-world retail around 10% less than MSRP. This should give you an idea of where you can budget towards such extras like night sights, front strap checkering, melt packages, etc. I would also suggest leaning towards avoiding adjustable sights on a carry gun as their edges can be sharp enough to be uncomfortable.

My .o2
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 7:38:55 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 05gpgt2:
Does anyone have a list or know which ones would be in my price range of 650 or so lower the better if possible and maybe some features that I should be looking for


Recently picked up a Taurus PT1911 AR...I'm iffy about the rail, it was lightly used and I got a deal so I went ahead and picked it up...but a damn nice pistol for your price range. The trigger breaks like glass, as accurate as I am, and a decent amount of upgrades over a basic GI model.
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 7:41:33 PM EDT
Originally Posted By InTuneGp:
Originally Posted By 05gpgt2:
Does anyone have a list or know which ones would be in my price range of 650 or so lower the better if possible and maybe some features that I should be looking for


Recently picked up a Taurus PT1911 AR...I'm iffy about the rail, it was lightly used and I got a deal so I went ahead and picked it up...but a damn nice pistol for your price range. The trigger breaks like glass, as accurate as I am, and a decent amount of upgrades over a basic GI model.



Edit- I don't know about features you should be looking for because that depends on what you want it to do, but the Taurus has an ambi safety, beaver-tail grip safety, checkering on the front strap, mainspring housing, and trigger guard, grooved trigger, skeletonized trigger and hammer...all I'm gonna add is an extended slide release and a magwell of some sort.
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 10:51:54 PM EDT
I would get a full size .45 for your first and make sure you like the design, manual of arms, etc... before you go about carrying one. Carrying a full size isn't a big deal, it's shouldn't print any worse than your PPQ probably less. The greatest thing about a 1911 is how thin it is.

For your price, Rock Island seems to be a great value. I wouldn't worry too much about sights or anything right away, I learned to shoot with tiny GI sights on my grandpa's old Ithaca 1911 and they do just fine. Later on, you might want to get better sights but you will be stuck with staked front sights which have been known to come loose over time, you can also have the slide cut for dovetails or just get another 1911 with dovetailed sights later on. Best thing to get would be a good holster, mags, and ammo. Good luck.
Link Posted: 12/27/2012 6:14:47 AM EDT
Ya I will be getting a full size then and the ria could be it we have a gun show this weekend so unless I find something there is there any sites I can look for one
Link Posted: 12/27/2012 6:16:07 AM EDT
If I would go with the ria is it fairly accurate and what about customer service on something like that
Link Posted: 12/27/2012 3:43:37 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 05gpgt2:
My reasoning for the compact was for carry over my ppq and the ria only has two sizes and I always here good things about them. But if that is the case what about an officer sized model in 9mm or 45


A fullsized 1911 is not hard to conceal.

The RIAs are damned good guns.

I have a GI and a Tactical and they both run 100 percent even with JHP.

Link Posted: 12/28/2012 4:15:43 PM EDT
Well went to the gun show and walked out with a Springfield range officer with an nm serial number. I'll post pics as soon as I can. Not sure if it was a great deal but I did not think it was a bad buy for what it is.
Link Posted: 12/28/2012 5:34:00 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 05gpgt2:
Well went to the gun show and walked out with a Springfield range officer with an nm serial number. I'll post pics as soon as I can. Not sure if it was a great deal but I did not think it was a bad buy for what it is.


That's an excellent choice for a first 1911. As well-made as anything in its price range with features that are actually usable--a good barrel and good sights will serve any shooter. If you want something fancier later, fine, but for now, you've got everything you need in a pistol.

With the bomar-style rear sight, it probably wouldn't be my choice for a carry gun, but you could knock the corners off the flat if that's your intent.

Take your time, buy plenty of ammo, and practice a lot! The 1911 is an excellent design and the full-size variant is very shootable, but it requires practice--especially if you plan to carry.

Good luck, and congrats. You made a real good choice.
Link Posted: 12/28/2012 7:07:07 PM EDT
Is there any way to change that style of site later on? Is there any where to go and read about striping these down and cleaning them properly and what type of mags does everyone use because I can get extra Springfield ones for 12 bucks a piece or should I go elsewhere. Basically just need somewhere to get the basics of a 1911 since I am new to them
Link Posted: 12/28/2012 8:53:21 PM EDT
Most reliable 1911 = 5" bushing .45acp (original design)
Far less reliable 1911 = 3" in .45acp
Least reliable 1911 = short barrel 9mm

In a 9mm 1911 EMP all the way. It was a 1911 originally designed as a 9mm.
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