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best first 1911?

Discussion in '1911 Forums' started by bithabus, Oct 21, 2008.

  1. bithabus

    bithabus

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    Jul 6, 2008
    Austin TX
    I'm considering two pistols: a new Colt Series 70 and a Dan Wesson Valor. Price is within $300, with the DW being the more expensive.

    I know there are many knowledgeable 1911 collectors posting here; which one is the better buy?

    :cool:
     
  2. bac1023

    bac1023

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    PA
    The two are totally different.

    The standard series 70 is basically just a 1911A1 replica, while the Valor is an enhanced 1911. I think the valor represents a better value for the money, but its not an apples to apples comparison.
     


  3. Substance-P

    Substance-P Member

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    Indianapolis, IN
    I agree it really depends on what you expect to do with them. The Colt would represent a great platform to have customized while the Valor is already enhanced as Bac says. If this is your first 1911, it is a little hard to know what features you want or don't want. Do you expect to carry this gun, home defense, range time, all of the above?

    Good luck either way, once you get a 1911, it's hard to go back to something else
     
  4. bithabus

    bithabus

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    Jul 6, 2008
    Austin TX
    I probably won't carry it, but it will see lots of time at the range. For home defense, there other things I'd rather go with.

    I'm leaning toward the Valor but the Colt is very cool.
     
  5. tous

    tous GET A ROPE!

    30,281
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    Jan 7, 2001
    Plano, Texas, Republic of
    Any of them. :thumbsup:

    The first one is the hardest. The next twenty are easy.
     
  6. J.Kill

    J.Kill

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    Only nineteen more left to go:crying:
     
  7. srothman

    srothman

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    Feb 23, 2007
    Missouri
    Have you looked at the Colt Combat Elite XSE? It can be bought for under 900.00. I use to think the only reason to buy a Colt was to use as a base gun. This is a decent gun, for the price. You also have the best base gun if you ever decide to upgrade.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    That being said if you asked for the best 1911 under $1,000.00, I would answer the STI Trojan.

    The only reason I would suggest the Colt, is if you were looking for a gun to shoot now, until you decided what you liked, and were then going to send it off the be customized. This has the great Colt base, with a few options that make the gun easier to shoot now. It has better sights, beavertail safety (fitted as good as my Ed Brown Kobra Carry), and a few other nice features.

    The Valor is a whole different league than the Colt. It is a cusotmized gun, while the Colt is a base gun.

    I would suggest looking at, holding, and shooting as many 1911's as possible. You will learn what you like and dis-like. You should then be able to make up a list of must haves, would like to have, and cannot have/hate. Then you will be able to use this list and make an educated decision of the best 1911 for your.

    Another one to look at is the Springfield TRP. I personally do not care for 20 lpi, so it would not be a good choice for me. If you like 20 lpi, it may be a great choice for you.

    This is where your list will come in to play. When you held and possible shot a gun with 20 lpi checkering, what did you think of it?

    It is very difficult to know what is the best for you, without knowing you. Do you like labels on your clothes, or cars? Do you like good quality at a good price, and don't care whose name is on it?

    Would you rather have a gun that looks great, and don't care about performance? Would you rather have a gun that may not win any beauty contest, but will run great? Would you like a combination of looks, and performance?

    How good is your eye sight? Can you see black on black target sights? Do you prefer white dot sights? Is this going to be used for self defense, and need night sights? Do you hand-load, and would want adjustable target sights? This is where you cannot really compare the Colt to the Valor, they have two totally different type of sights. Neither one is bad or wrong, it is just what works best for you, this goes back to the list.

    If you spend some time looking at different 1911's and learning about them, you should be able to make an educated decision about what is best for YOU.
     
  8. Great post srothman, I also have a 'regular' Colt XSE that saw a lot of carry time, very nice product from Colt.

    This pic is from the first day break-in, 400 rounds and no hiccups out of the box;
    [​IMG]

    Now the before out of the box pic;
    [​IMG]

    This Lew Horten version of Colt's combat/target has seen six years of some pretty hard use, as you can see by the pic, no hiccups during those six years. Still extremely accurate for surgical type shots at distance, rear dovetail now has a little movement;
    [​IMG]

    I'm also looking at the STI Trojan for a future purchase, but, I have some .400 Corbon 'stuff' that will be arriving in the next few days. If you handload, get a nice platform strong enough to take the .460 Rowland conversion, not that you'll ever make the conversion, but you'll learn which brands make their 1911s tough enough to take the .460R abuse according to Johnny Rowland.

    http://www.clarkcustomguns.com/rowland.htm

    Bob :cowboy:
     
  9. bithabus

    bithabus

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    Austin TX
    That monotone XSE looks great!

    Thanks for the detailed response, srothman. I've looked at the Trojan, and I understand it is a very good gun for the money, but I find the "TROJAN" lettering on the slide to be rather hideous. I'd buy one of they could cut a slide without the logo.

    Emotionally the Colt brand speaks to me as a first 1911 purchase, but I want to spend my time shooting rather than waiting for various smiths to complete upgrades. I'll try to find an XSE to check out in person. If the Valor is a better shooter out of the box, though, I think I should buy that one.
     
  10. bithabus

    bithabus

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    Jul 6, 2008
    Austin TX
    So went over to Cabela's today and checked out a Colt XSE. The trigger rattled around severely and the overall fit and finish was not very good. Also, as usual, the salesman was rude and unhelpful.

    I'm going to buy the next Valor I find for sale.
     
  11. tous

    tous GET A ROPE!

    30,281
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    Jan 7, 2001
    Plano, Texas, Republic of
    Can't think of many better first 1911s. :thumbsup:

    NB: the distributor is in New Orleans, so if they have one in stock, only a two-day wait. :snoopy:
     
  12. srothman

    srothman

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    Feb 23, 2007
    Missouri
    You are trying to compare are some what bare 1911 (Colt XSE), that sells for under $900.00, to a customized 1911 with lots of extra work that sells for $1,400.00.

    There is no comparison between the two.

    There was a Valor going for about $1,200.00, on GB, a few days ago. Not sure if it is still there, it was a great deal.


    I have the Colt and was actually impressed with the quality of it, especially consider I paid under $900.00 for it. I bought it for a classic two tone build, but am going to shoot it, at least until my name comes up.
     
  13. bithabus

    bithabus

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    Jul 6, 2008
    Austin TX
    The Valor on GB sold before I made up my mind. Unfortunate for me but someone got a deal.
     
  14. srothman

    srothman

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    Feb 23, 2007
    Missouri
    I have one on order from my local FFL. It was very difficult to resist that one, and I almost did.

    If you see one for sale, don't wait. They usually don't last long, especially when they are selling for under $1,300.00. I have seen a few. You may want to try and find a good local dealer who will put a little time and effort into calling and finding you one. My dealer found one, but when it came in, it had some damage from shipping, so I refused it. I am in no hurry, so I have not pushed my local dealer to find one.
     
  15. tx787

    tx787

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    Well I tried hard to do a search for the exact question I had an this was about as close as I got by page 5.

    My little brother is turning 21 in a couple months and wants a NIB Colt 1911 as his first handgun (smart kid). He has a particular model in mind (Series 70 O1070AICZ Stainless) but I need some suggestions on where to find it. Can people here recommend a place to order one or is it better to have a local FFL or LGS get it from Colt directly? It would be sourced or shipped to an FFL in Austin TX or Dallas TX.
     
  16. Todesengel

    Todesengel No Compromise.

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    Apr 17, 2004
    Houston, TX
    After owning lots of 1911's I will have to say get a Baer TRS...you won't be sorry. Look for a lightly used one, I've seen them as low as $1200.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2010
  17. jrs93accord

    jrs93accord

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    Pensacola, FL
    I would say that is an excellent decision. The DW Valor would have been my choice as well. Hope you find one soon.
     
  18. Hokie1911

    Hokie1911 >

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    NE Ohio
    If I cold find a lightly used TRS for $1,200....I'd sell my left nut for it. Well, provided Mrs Hokieshooter would give me access to it. :supergrin:
     
  19. Todesengel

    Todesengel No Compromise.

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    Apr 17, 2004
    Houston, TX
  20. glock2740

    glock2740 Gun lover.

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    NW Ark.
    Welcome back srothman :wavey: Where the hell have you been?