Thursday, July 29, 2010

Calling All 1911 Offcianados

Let's say you have a buddy. Let's say this friend has a CCW but only recently became a 'gunnie' and actually expanded his shooting experience. He only had one gat, a 9mm, and that's what he carried, but for whatever reason he started trying other people guns out, just to see. In so doing he discovered he shoots the 1911 really well and has fallen in love with it (natch.)

Well the borrowed 1911 has to go back to the owner, but he has trained a bit with this loaner and the 1911 operating system is now second nature.

Well, not being a gunnie, he's not up with the 1911 scene, and the choices are overwhelming. All he knows is he wants to carry a steel Combat Commander type. Not too big, not too small. And rugged steel. He wants to carry this pistol as his primary for the next 40 years or so. And he has $1450 or less to spend, so not enough for a custom, really.

But he wants a recommendation of a few brands to look at. And YOU, being a gunnie, is familiar with quite a lot of the different flavors.

Pick 3 production model Commander 1911s for him to look at, maximizing quality at his price point. (I know where I'd tell him to look, but I am too n00b to be an authority on the matter.)


Anonymous said...

Colt- based on what I know- just start them there.

Murphy's Law said...

Screw Colt--the only thing worse than their quality control these days is their customer service when you need something fixed. They devote all of their attention to military and LE contracts and couldn't care less about their not-very-profitable civilian sales.

I'd recommend going with a Kimber or a Springfield Armory. Both companies offer several production variants and they make quality stuff AND stand behind it.

Crucis said...

There are several Commander "sized" production pistols available. Colt's Combat Commander is common on GunBroker, GunsAmerica and Auction Arms. Springfield Armory has a 4.5" version as does Para-Ordnance. Kimber has 4" models. All will do you well. Personally, I've owned several Paras in the standard and LDA forms and all worked well. I have a Kimber as well and it has several thousand rounds through it and works flawlessly. I haven't owned any SAs but I've friends who do and they praise them.

I wouldn't mind a light-weight Combat Commander myself. If I stumble across one with the right price---it's mine!

Tam said...

"They devote all of their attention to military and LE contracts and couldn't care less about their not-very-profitable civilian sales."

IIRC, Colt Defense and Colt's Manufacturing Company aren't even the same company anymore.

Anyhow, to the original question:

$1450 to spend on an all-steel 4" or 4.25" 1911?

With that kind of money to spend, I'd look at used Wilsons and Baers, rather than new MIMbers, Dead Horsies, and Brazilian Armories.

Anonymous said...

OK, my opinion: Hunt up a used Colt Combat Commander. I priced those out a few months back and the going rate was $700+. (I have a used Colt Combat Comm., bought from a friend. Wanted to check on going rates in order to make a fair deal.) With the money left over get the gun in the shape you want it to be (if needed at all), buy your carry rig, and bunches of ammo.

Papa Whiskey said...

I like the idea of used Baers and Wilsons. I also like the idea of a used Colt Commander and using the money he has left with a good gunsmith making it however he wants it.

Anonymous said...

Without a doubt, a Dan Wesson CBOB would be at the top of the list. Beautiful, well made pistol. They are a little hard to find tho. For the longest time, I didn't understand the little bobtail thing, until I held it. It fits my hand like few other things.


Vinosaur said...

Avoid the Kimber. I love both of my full size Kimber 1911's, but the double spring set on the Commander size is a PainInTheA.. and needs a special tool for takedown that is easily lost. Ask me how I know.
Springfield has a nice Steel Commander for less than $600 and can be upgraded from there. Xavier has a great review of it. It does not use the front barrel bushing, but I like that you can take it down without tools. It is however made in Brazil. I believe the upgraded models are US made, but they are aluminum frame.
Colt is nice, but hit and miss from what I have seen.