These first two pics are from Sightm1911.com . . .
Ready? – I hope so . . .
There are differences a plenty between the variants – most are pretty subtle – 1911 sights are very small – the hammer shape changed – the tang or the top of the grip safety ( what has evolved into what we today call a beaver tail ) changed – the length of the trigger changed – no lanyard loops on the magazines with the A1 – flat mainspring housing vs arched mainspring housing – frame cutouts right behind the trigger for finger clearance – Clarence . . .
If you stare long at the two pics I will begin to worry about all y’all – but looking back and forth between them you can see differences . . .
There are folks out there that will tell you the ONLY 1911’s are the original pattern – and they are right as far as that goes but – myself and most other folks like the “1911 pattern” and are going to carry and shoot the pistol – regardless of it’s a TRUE 1911 or not – for goodness sake’s they all shoot just about the same – and I don’t know about you folks but I’m not carrying a 3 to 5 thousand dollar pistol around as Every Day Carry – just saying . . .
I have a lodge brother who carries a 1926 commercial model 1911 as his Every Day Carry – it was bought new by his grandfather and passed down to him – me personally? – I wouldn’t carry it – but different folks / different strokes – if our free time ever overlaps or I get a Tuesday night off and get to lodge – I will get a pile of pics and do a post on it – it’s in great shape for a 95 year old pistol . . .
Now let’s take a look at my RIA – a “1911A1 Full Size” – and I understand and sympathize with the folks that claim only a 5 inch version CAN be a 1911 – I have one foot in that camp as well . . .
Let’s focus first on the frame – the frame is fairly close to an A1 – the shape of the trigger guard is a little too rounded and the way it “blends” into the frame missed it by just that much – the hammer is a miss – the tang or beaver tail – close – the thumb safety and slide release / take down pin – nope – the trigger? Not quite long enough – The main spring housings are flat on the stock pistols – I wanted the particular texture / color combination for grips and the mag well ( it is a carry gun after all! ) and the only way that comes is with an arched main spring housing – But Armscor/RIA comes close enough that you get the feel of a 1911A1 – they must be doing something right since they produce more 1911’s than everybody else combined! – and the numbers are hard to pin down but my understanding is their total number of complaints are less than a single well known manufacturer’s level of complaints – I WILL NOT name names as I cannot come up with hard numbers – The sights are my preference – 3 dot tritium night sites – not factory by any stretch
On to the Cimarron 1911 . . .
Obviously disregard the grips and the bushing / muzzle brake – Ready? – Here we go . . .
What we end up with ( as to my level of understanding ) as a result of a loose 3 way collaboration between Armscor / SASS / Cimarron which ended up with a 1911 “pattern” pistol that qualifies for the Wild Bunch venue and pretty much feels and looks like a “1911” – the things they got “right” – no finger relief cuts behind the trigger – flat mainspring housing – no relief cut behind the ejection port – everything else – not so much – but at a glance it is a good “representation” of a “1911” – and it qualifies for the venue – and in nickel makes for one Hell of a BBQ gun!
I really need to wax the smudge magnet – don’t I?
Damn cellphone camera just didn’t know where to focus on this ejection port pic – this pic was the best of 5 – LMAO!
And from Colt . . . The one that drove a bunch of folks over the edge . . .
Everyone was clamoring for Colt to release a “new” base contract “Government Model” – and that is just what they did – Colt released a “modern” version of the “1911” – and the biggest sin Colt committed in some people’s eyes? . . .
It was an 80 series slide with the firing pin block – according to a lot of folks Colt just cussed the Pope during Christmas Eve High Mass or threw rocks at Superman – but Colt did exactly what they said they were going to do – build a “modern” 1911 as if it was for a base government contract – didn’t bother me in the least – I wanted one – and at $308 bucks damn sure couldn’t afford one at the time – you could pick up a real decent used car for $300 bucks at that time . . .
I stumbled across this one at Cabela’s a year or so back and it was hilarious – I asked the guy if I could function check it and if it was all right I would buy it – and he’s like “don’t you want to know the price?” – and I’m like not particularly ’cause if it’s less than a grand it’s mine ( didn’t have the heart to tell him I had wanted one for almost 30 years ) – LOL! – it was $800 bucks – which was full up retail for a used one – the scary part of that is that right now they are pushing $1200 bucks in just about any shape if you can find one – this one here the scuffs on the slide you see in the above pic are from sitting in the frigging box – the scuffs on the grip safety and around the thumb safety movement area – I put them there – it was just about “new in box” when I bought it – if I was pushed to guess I would put the round count at less than 100 when I picked it up . . .
So Bruce . . . What exactly is a “1911”? or a 1911A1? – or a 1911 pattern? – Well, I’ll play your silly game – it’s kinda one of those beauty is in the eye of the beholder things – and I sure like to be holding me some 1911’s I’m here to say . . .
I even have some 1911’s that are NOT in God’s chosen caliber as handed down to St. Browning – Blessed be The .45ACP . . . – I will look at putting a post together with all of them one of these days – and yes I am Laughing My Ass Off as I type this . . .
People – Have Fun! – Run the Gun! – and remember – Fish Heads are Cheap!!