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  #1  
Old 01-18-2011, 10:49 AM
fordman1282 fordman1282 is offline
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Most reliable 1911




Ok after doing tons of asking around im still at a crossroads and need good solid un-biased help. Im wanting to purchase a 1911 for around $1,000 is what i can spend. I have looked at Kimber,Colt, and Springfield. I have shot the Kimber Classic and a Springfield. At the range the SA did nothing but irritate me. The bullets would not go into the chamber. I would pull the slide back (which was a bear to pull back) and it would not slam forward. I wondered what was wrong to find out by observation that the bullet would not go up into the chamber. Later to find out from a gunsmith that the loading ramp wasnt polished correctly. I am leaning towards a Kimber but the local gun shop states they are junk and never buy one which is the first time from anyone I have heard this statement. I need advise on what is the best un-biase most reliable 1911 for around my price range the gun I am leaning towards is a Kimber custom crimson carry 2. thank you for your help.
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:17 AM
djdo djdo is offline
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I'd be looking at a Dan Wesson Heritage (1200ish), Colt Combat Elite (950ish), Springfield Range Officer (850ish).
Though I think everyone's first 1911 should be something basic, a Springfield GI or Mil-Spec, Colt S70 Repro, Remington R1, Para GI Expert, etc.
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  #3  
Old 01-18-2011, 11:24 AM
COLD COLD is offline
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It will be hard to get an unbiased opinion when most on here including myself are biased,while I have been very satisfied with Kimber but not with Colt or Springfield others will have different opinions,any gunshop that states the number one mfg.of 1911s in the USA is junk should be avoided unless he has specific personal info that he can provide,not stories on the internet.If you get a bad one of any brand you will not be happy,and most use that one example to badmouth that brand while all makers will have one that gets past QC sometimes. Most in the price range you stated will be dependable after breakin.
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:26 AM
fordman1282 fordman1282 is offline
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thanks for your advice but please keep in mind i do want complete non bias feed back. I just want to know which gun has had a track record of the least amount of problems or the best quality out of the box. Like loading ramps be polished correctly, good tight slide to barrel fits etc.
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:28 AM
Cannibul Cannibul is offline
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Or it could have been bad magazines with the SA you shot.

I've had good luck with Dan Wesson, Springfield Armory, Colt, Sig (after a trip to the factory), Smith and Wesson.

Personally I'd get a Smith and Wesson.

The Sig was the 125th or 126th 1911 that Sig built. The early ones have an acknowledged problem with the external extractor. Sig happily fixed the problem.
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  #6  
Old 01-18-2011, 11:34 AM
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I've never had feeding/chambering issues with any of my 1911s, unless the mag spring was old and tired, or the rounds were out of spec. If the gun is properly made and maintained, feeding should be the least of your functional worries. That said, in the modern 1911 market there's no way to tell if a gun is properly made, since dimensional and other specs - both of guns and mags - appear to have been abandoned by a lot of makers.
If the slide of the Springfield was very difficult to pull back, then I'd suspect an incorrect recoil spring was installed, and that will certainly cause feed failures even if the feed ramp is correctly dimensioned and finished.
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  #7  
Old 01-18-2011, 11:37 AM
Horoscope Fish Horoscope Fish is offline
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Any company can produce a bad gun. That's just Life. The Springfield you talk about might have been a lemon, or maybe it needed a little tweak; who knows. The problem is, buying a particular brand does not guarantee you anything. Ever. I don't care how many fan-boys come in blowing smoke about how their Brand X 1911 is the greatest gift to the human race since the invention of sliced bread (and cures cancer to boot) while Brand Y is all junk, all the time; an opinion based, typically, on their single purchase. The fact of the matter is you don't get to be a top player, a name to be reckoned with, in the gun business by consistently producing crap. You just don't. Shooters are too savvy and too penny-pinching to let that happen.

You better your odds by sticking with a big name such as Kimber or Springfield or Dan Wesson or Smith & Wesson or what have you, but that's all you can do. And don't let anyone tell you that any of the big boys make "junk"; you know better, and you know better than to let Internet chatter make your buying decision for you. Do the smart thing: get out and pound the pavement and get your grimy little mitts on a few models from a few different manufacturers at least. More is better. One of them will stand out... One of them will call out to you.
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  #8  
Old 01-18-2011, 11:38 AM
fordman1282 fordman1282 is offline
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Quote:
I've never had feeding/chambering issues with any of my 1911s, unless the mag spring was old and tired, or the rounds were out of spec. If the gun is properly made and maintained, feeding should be the least of your functional worries. That said, in the modern 1911 market there's no way to tell if a gun is properly made, since dimensional and other specs - both of guns and mags - appear to have been abandoned by a lot of makers.
If the slide of the Springfield was very difficult to pull back, then I'd suspect an incorrect recoil spring was installed, and that will certainly cause feed failures even if the feed ramp is correctly dimensioned and finished.
So then what is your honest opinion of Kimber? Im not a gunsmith and Im purchasing a gun for $1,000 so I dont want my gun to be at the gunsmith all the time lol so I want a gun with the least amount of issues. And I loved the way the Kimber felt, shot, etc. And i was very accurate with it. ALot more accurate with it then I am My Glocks.
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:41 AM
fordman1282 fordman1282 is offline
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Any company can produce a bad gun. That's just Life. The Springfield you talk about might have been a lemon, or maybe it needed a little tweak; who knows. The problem is, buying a particular brand does not guarantee you
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anything. Ever. I don't care how many fanboys come in blowing smoke about how their Brand X 1911 is the greatest gift to the human race since the invention of since sliced bread and Brand Y is all junk all the time based, typically, on their single purchase. Fact of the matter is, you don't get to be a top player, a name to be reckoned with, in the gun business by producing crap. You just don't. Shooters are too savvy and too penny-pinching to let that happen.

You better your odds by sticking with a big name such as Kimber or Springfield or Dan Wesson or Smith & Wesson or what have you, but that's all you can do. And don't let anyone tell you that any of the big boys make "junk"; you know better, and you know better than to let Internet chatter make your buying decision for you. Do the smart thing: get out and pound the pavement and get your grimy little mitts on a few models from a few different manufacturers at least. More is better. One of them will stand out... One of them will call out to you.
great advise thank you.Your right I guess what i was wanting to hear is hey look i know of several kimber owners none have issues that i know of or hey you might wanna watch kimber i have heard of these issues or what have you but I really dont hear of any factual data or statements that are derrogatory agains either. So I think what you just said hit it perfect, I guess i just needed that lol.
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  #10  
Old 01-18-2011, 12:04 PM
BaldEagle323 BaldEagle323 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordman1282 View Post
So then what is your honest opinion of Kimber? Im not a gunsmith and Im purchasing a gun for $1,000 so I dont want my gun to be at the gunsmith all the time lol so I want a gun with the least amount of issues. And I loved the way the Kimber felt, shot, etc. And i was very accurate with it. ALot more accurate with it then I am My Glocks.
My opinion of Kmber is that they make a fine 1911. Some people won't go near one and some like them, but like a (fill in any other brand name here) better. Your screen name indicates that you like Fords. So do I, and you can't GIVE me a Chevy...I'll sell it at my earliest convenience. Some feel the same way about Fords. Opinions vary widely from person to person. Some people swear by Springfield because of their Customer Service. I don't care for them because even though they are a US-based company, most of their guns are made in foreign countries. But that's MY opinion. You'll hear differing opinions on any maker of 1911's. My advice is buy what makes YOU happy, and enjoy it. Like someoone else posted, every brand makes a lemon once in a while, that's what warranties are for. If it were me with $1000 to spend, I'd get a Kimber Custom II in stainless and spend the difference in ammo and maybe a good holster.
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  #11  
Old 01-18-2011, 12:09 PM
fordman1282 fordman1282 is offline
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My opinion of Kmber is that they make a fine 1911. Some people won't go near one and some like them, but like a (fill in any other brand name here) better. Your screen name indicates that you like Fords. So do I, and you can't GIVE me a Chevy...I'll sell it at my earliest convenience. Some feel the same way about Fords. Opinions vary widely from person to person. Some people swear by Springfield because of their Customer Service. I don't care for them because even though they are a US-based company, most of their guns are made in foreign countries. But that's MY opinion. You'll hear differing opinions on any maker of 1911's. My advice is buy what makes YOU happy, and enjoy it. Like someoone else posted, every brand makes a lemon once in a while, that's what warranties are for. If it were me with $1000 to spend, I'd get a Kimber Custom II in stainless and spend the difference in ammo and maybe a good holster.
Your right Im a Ford guy, I was in service at a large Ford dealership here in KS BUT if someone where to ask me Ford or Chevy I would say depends on what your after, That this particular Ford has had these issues or this one is hardly in the shop etc. To me Ford and Chevy both make decent quality automobiles and they both make there junk....You couldnt give me a 4WD explorer lol. But Im a mustang FREAK. I own 2. But to say a Mustang is more reliable than the new camaro is a biased statement I think both are of equal reliability for now lol. I have buddies in Chevy and Dodge service and they all have there issues.
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:16 PM
Dave Waits Dave Waits is offline
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Here's the big problem, guys who spend $38,000.00 on a new car and don't bitch when there's a problem will rant,rave and whine when their $800.00 handgun messes up. A gun is exactly like a car in that both are mechanical devices. No matter who produces them, some will have problems. For the cheap seats; NO MECHANICAL OBJECT HAS A 100% RELIABILITY RECORD FOR THE ITEM AS A WHOLE!!!!! There WILL be some produced that screw up. That is why all guns, no matter who makes them, have a Warranty!

Rant mode off;

That said, odds are the gun you buy will run great from the start, if it doesn't, it probably will after a break-in period. And, if it still doesn't you have the Warranty. No gun manufacturer purposely makes a defective product, wouldn't stay in business long if they did.

Kimber is a good example. When you sell three times or more as many of a product as the competition(Kimber has a 40% share of the Market), you're going to have more people with problems due to the sheer number of guns out there. Kimber may even have a smaller percentage of problems than the others but you'll hear about them alot due to have many are sold.

Kimbers are a very good buy in the 1911 market.
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  #13  
Old 01-18-2011, 12:18 PM
fordman1282 fordman1282 is offline
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your currect BUT guns are alot simpler than a car lol. However I agree with your statment. And yes customers do gripe and moan ALOT!
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:21 PM
Dave Waits Dave Waits is offline
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Not really. All the critical measurements in a firearm are measured in thousandths of an inch. A car with the wheel-alignment off won't kill you, A 1911 with a slightly weak sear spring can go full-auto.
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  #15  
Old 01-18-2011, 12:21 PM
XBOXER XBOXER is offline
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Buy whatever gun you like. Chances are it will run fine or just as good as others !
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:24 PM
fordman1282 fordman1282 is offline
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when i say simpler i mean less components to fail.
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordman1282 View Post
So then what is your honest opinion of Kimber? Im not a gunsmith and Im purchasing a gun for $1,000 so I dont want my gun to be at the gunsmith all the time lol so I want a gun with the least amount of issues. And I loved the way the Kimber felt, shot, etc. And i was very accurate with it. ALot more accurate with it then I am My Glocks.
I've owned more than a dozen 1911s, in four different calibers, and no Kimbers among them. If Kimber made a gun in a configuration that I liked, I'd see if something similar was available from Colt or Springfield Armory.
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:31 PM
fordman1282 fordman1282 is offline
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i found a kimber tle rl 2 for $699.00 thought that is a good deal.
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:36 PM
1995GreenMachine 1995GreenMachine is offline
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when i say simpler i mean less components to fail.
No joke! I work at a CarQuest, so anymore when someone walks in and asks what's wrong with their car/truck, it's a shot in the dark. 25-30 years ago, that wouldn't have been a problem (funny, I wasn't even alive then!)

And Fordman, my name here is in reference to my F150 You're a better man than I; there's no vehicle I'd put above a Ford (you mentioned Chevy as an alternative).

My view on guns is the same when it comes to vehicles: if you take care of them, give them the maintenance and care they are supposed to have, they'll last darned near forever (things do wear out and need replaced, hence "routine" maintenance)

Last thing, where in KS are you? My mother was born/raised in Lyons and I still have family out there
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by fordman1282 View Post
...please keep in mind i do want complete non bias feed back.
Good luck with that

You want what amounts to a guarantee of reliability - ain't no such thing, pal. You pays your money and you takes your chances, just like the rest of us - and if the gun don't work properly, you fix it (or get it fixed) until it does or you hand it back and try another..
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:59 PM
BigDog9 BigDog9 is offline
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The reason you're not getting a consensus - is there isn't one ...in the $1,000 price range for 1911's . In fact / you may not even get a consensus if you raise your budget to $3,000 ...although that is when companies like Wilson Combat, Ed Brown, etc come to the front of the pack.

All of the mfg's producing guns in that $1,000 price range - have some issues...and as I'm sure you realize, Kimber has a lot of guns in the $1,000 price range - and some up around $ 2,000 as well.

I have 2 Kimbers - a Tactical Pro II model / and a Gold Combat Stainless model ....the Tactical Pro model had a really crummy trigger in it - so my local smith replace the trigger, sear and disconnector for about $ 350 and now its a very good gun ( with Wilson parts ). My Gold Combat stainless - list price is about $2,000 ...and it has a decent trigger ....but not great. One of these days, I'll send it to Wilson to have it rebuilt ....

Almost all 1911's at the lower or medium price range - will need some "tuning" ....trigger, barrel ramp, mags, etc ....but you can't just say "all Kimbers are great" or "all Kimbers are junk" ....they're just not .... You can dry fire a gun / and generally see how the trigger feels - and for most of us, that is as good an indication as we can get until we put thousands of rounds thru the gun. Fit and finish are something you can see ...and features on the gun are subjective to what you want ....

I don't think Colt, Springfield, Kimber or Sig are making terrible guns ...they aren't anything compared to a gun from Wison Combat ....but they aren't bad ....all you can do, is look at and check as many triggers as you can - until you find one that breaks just like you want ....minimal pressure, no creep, etc ... ( I like my 1911's with 3 1/2 - 4 lb triggers ) and no secondary "snagging", or issues that interfere in how it breaks ....

One issue, I think, might help - is to look at some stainless guns ...because when it comes to stainless guns - they can't cover up blemishes in their process with a finish ...so they might spend a little more time on the bench with a stainless gun vs a blued or parkerized gun ...

Shoot as many models as you can ....talk to as many guys as you can at the ranges ....see what they're shooting / do they like it /would they buy it again. If you see someone shooting a Wilson or an Ed Brown ...maybe they'll let you put a few rounds thru their gun ( offer to buy them a box of ammo or something ..) ....but at $1,000 I think you'll find some good guns ...are some of the $3,000 guns ( like wilson ) 3 times, or 10 times better ...if there is room in your budget - yes, I think you'd prefer one of the upper end guns ....but don't get discouraged on a $1,000 gun / just take your time and look at a lot of guns.

There just is no consensus ---- in my opinion....
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Old 01-18-2011, 01:09 PM
BikerRN BikerRN is offline
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I had about $1,000 to spend on a new 1911 and went with a Colt Rail Gun.

I've owned five or six Springfields over the years prior to that, and have no problem recommending their 5" 1911's. In 750 rounds of various ammo, 'ball and hollowpoint, I have had no failures to feed, failures to eject, or failures to fire with my new Colt. I'm at the point now where I will start testing it with my carry ammunition. If no failures there then I will call it good to go and rely on it for defensive usage.

I didn't consider a Kimber, although they look pretty, due to various reports on reliability from people I trust, and know that they know how to run a 1911. If Colt isn't your bag, and you are hesitant to go with a Springfield, my next suggestion would be a Dan Wesson. It may however be out of your price range.

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Old 01-18-2011, 01:22 PM
Hardbawl Hardbawl is offline
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My S&W 1911 runs and runs and runs. I think it was in the $850 range. I went to the gun store to get a Kimber. They had 2 Kimbers and this S&W. All were stainless. The Smith was just plain better put together.

When I got it home it gave me some feed jams durring the first 200 rounds. After that it smoothed right out. It's got about 3500 rounds on it now with out any jams since break in. After about 1500 rounds it began to feel like the slide was cycling a little slow. A new 16# recoil spring frome Wolff shure cured that.

It is the best non custom 1911 that I have shot in 40 years.
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Old 01-18-2011, 02:20 PM
betterlate111 betterlate111 is offline
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Just so you all know...

...If anyone has a Kimber, Colt, or Springfield that they think is junk, please send it to me. I promise not to charge an outrageous disposal fee.
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Old 01-18-2011, 02:40 PM
Carbon Footprint Carbon Footprint is offline
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You are just going to have to look at them all (or as many as you can get your hands on) and pick the one you like best. Among the major manufacturers, you are very most likely going to have an excellent firearm that will make you happy.

I am a Kimber owner, and have never had a problem with mine. Based on MY experience, I am predisposed toward the boys from Yonkers. I also like the various choices that Kimber has available in terms of materials, finishes, configurations, etc, etc.
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