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Posted: 9/8/2010 9:31:20 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/8/2010 9:32:59 PM EDT by teddy12b]
I'm thinking of getting back into the 1911 game and I have it narrowed down to either the Springfield Mil Spec or Rock Island Tactical.

I like both, but the RIA comes setup exactly the way I'd want it and the Mil Spec would still need a wider grip safety installed. Ideally, I'd buy a springfield loaded, but that's out of the price range right now. The gun will be used at the range and as a home defense gun.

What should I be looking at to decide between to the two?
Link Posted: 9/8/2010 9:53:13 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/8/2010 9:57:15 PM EDT by 68_Mustang]
I recently bought a used SA Loaded for about 550 bucks. Great pistol.

I owned a regular RIA and it was a good gun. It would be a fun gun for range use. I am not sure about the quality of the parts on a Tactical model, but there are a ton of good reviews from owners.

The SA milspec is a better pistol, and you can always upgrade the parts when the time comes.

If you can compare them, look at fit and finish. Check the slide/frame fit. They are both good shooters.

Having owned both brands of pistols, I would recommend a SA any day of the week, but I also wouldn't try and talk you out of the RIA.
Link Posted: 9/8/2010 10:19:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/8/2010 10:21:10 PM EDT by 19119640]
I would go with the RIA and here is why.


Yes the springer is a better pistol. It is a forged frame, and a great base for custom work. However. you are looking for something that you can shoot and enjoy now. The springer will not have the items you are looking for, so you are going to constantly be wanting to upgrade, so you will not be happy with the pistol.


Here is what it is going to cost you to upgrade the pistol if say you send it back to springfield.

1911-A1 loaded pacakge $765.......upgrade your milspec to a loaded. You can buy a new loaded for that price, so why on earth would you do that?

So lets just upgrade with the bare bones upgrades to bring it up to some of the items the RIA already has on it.


Novak Sights 180.00
Skeletinized hammer $50.00
Ambi Safety $100.00
Lightweight trigger and action job $50 for trigger $80 for action job
Full length guide rod (you may or may not want this, but the rock has it, so I am including it) $50.00
Carry Bevel (again you may or may not want this, but the rock has it)....$80.00
Bevel and polish magazine well $55.00
Park complete pistol (you will need this after carry bevel and mag well bevel ) $80.00

Now breaking out my handy dandy calculator..... $765.00 before you pay for shipping. Again you could buy a new loaded for this price. Add to that the 5 or 600 you are going to pay for the mil spec to begin with and you could have purchased a TRP.


Unless you have huge amounts of money (which considering you are looking at RIAs and mil specs, I am guessing you don't) to blow on a 1911 to get it just the way you want it, I think anybody who buys a mil spec or GI with plans to later update it to loaded or better specs is a fool. It sounds great in theory, but financially it just doesn't make sense. Now if you wanted to tinker with it, and do the work yourself that is entirely different.

Don't get me wrong, I am not saying the RIA is going to be on par with a loaded or a upgraded mil spec. However everybody I have ever met who owned an RIA raved about them, so they must be doing something right.


And for the record, I am not and RIA fan boy. I have owned 1 in all my years and I traded it off before I ever shot it. The current focus of my affection is my SA Champion Operator.
Link Posted: 9/8/2010 10:28:59 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 19119640:
I would go with the RIA and here is why.


Yes the springer is a better pistol. It is a forged frame, and a great base for custom work. However. you are looking for something that you can shoot and enjoy now. The springer will not have the items you are looking for, so you are going to constantly be wanting to upgrade, so you will not be happy with the pistol.


Here is what it is going to cost you to upgrade the pistol if say you send it back to springfield.

1911-A1 loaded pacakge $765.......upgrade your milspec to a loaded. You can buy a new loaded for that price, so why on earth would you do that?

So lets just upgrade with the bare bones upgrades to bring it up to some of the items the RIA already has on it.


Novak Sights 180.00
Skeletinized hammer $50.00
Ambi Safety $100.00
Lightweight trigger and action job $50 for trigger $80 for action job
Full length guide rod (you may or may not want this, but the rock has it, so I am including it) $50.00
Carry Bevel (again you may or may not want this, but the rock has it)....$80.00
Bevel and polish magazine well $55.00
Park complete pistol (you will need this after carry bevel and mag well bevel ) $80.00

Now breaking out my handy dandy calculator..... $765.00 before you pay for shipping. Again you could buy a new loaded for this price. Add to that the 5 or 600 you are going to pay for the mil spec to begin with and you could have purchased a TRP.


Unless you have huge amounts of money (which considering you are looking at RIAs and mil specs, I am guessing you don't) to blow on a 1911 to get it just the way you want it, I think anybody who buys a mil spec or GI with plans to later update it to loaded or better specs is a fool. It sounds great in theory, but financially it just doesn't make sense. Now if you wanted to tinker with it, and do the work yourself that is entirely different.

Don't get me wrong, I am not saying the RIA is going to be on par with a loaded or a upgraded mil spec. However everybody I have ever met who owned an RIA raved about them, so they must be doing something right.


And for the record, I am not and RIA fan boy. I have owned 1 in all my years and I traded it off before I ever shot it. The current focus of my affection is my SA Champion Operator.
Well said.



Link Posted: 9/9/2010 8:48:50 AM EDT
Link Posted: 9/9/2010 9:08:42 AM EDT
Originally Posted By SGB:
I'd take the Springfield Mil Spec.



So would I, not only for the higher quality of the gun, but Springfield's reputation for service.

Link Posted: 9/9/2010 9:14:23 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/9/2010 9:15:15 AM EDT by WIZZO_ARAKM14]
There's only a couple holes in the theory of modding the mil-spec as outlined above.

You state you'd want the grip safety changed and have to have the pistol re-parked (if you get a parkerized mil-spec).

Problem being, mil-specs run in the $600 range new, if you add $100 for beavertail installation, $50 for parking just the frame, and whatever shipping you can get, you'll easily be into the $800 range. That puts you smack dab into a Loaded with Novak-cut night sights, ambi safety, carry bevel, and beavertail grip safety.

If you're setting a price limit and simply can't/don't want to spend as much as a Loaded, you can do 2 things.
1. Buy the RIA and be happy
2. Bob the hammer on the mil-spec.

Personally, I hold really high on a 1911 and I'll get bitten bloody with an unmodified GI hammer. I have bobbed the hammer on the Springfield GI that I'm currently carrying. Makes the pistol almost as nice to shoot as one with a beavertail on it.

Personally, I'd be more apt to buy the Springfield due to a forged frame and slide, but I believe the RIA is an excellent gun as well.

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Link Posted: 9/9/2010 10:37:51 AM EDT
I'd buy a used Loaded.
Link Posted: 9/9/2010 1:34:39 PM EDT
If you're going to get it modded to basically the Loaded model, you might as well just buy the Loaded...

I kicked around the idea of getting the RIA Tac model, as they are sub-$600 here in CA. Mil-Specs run upwards of $700 here... and then I'd have to change the hammer/grip safety to avoid getting bit.

might get the RIA to run my reloads through... range toy only... it'd take me a lot more rounds to trust my life to it than an SA...
Link Posted: 9/9/2010 6:22:45 PM EDT
RIA.

you'll be happy with it.
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