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I need some help from you 1911 guys!

Discussion in '1911 Forums' started by SIGShooter, Mar 3, 2010.

  1. SIGShooter

    SIGShooter Hucklebucks

    Jan 25, 2005
    I am looking into getting a 1911 that has an alloy frame.

    I am usually carrying my TRS with me most of the time. I was looking into something a little lighter.

    Looking online at some lowers, I noticed Caspian has a Titanium lower receiver.

    Anyone have the skinny on them? How do they hold up? Are they stronger than the aluminum lowers? Expected life of the Titanium?
  2. tous

    tous GET A ROPE!

    Jan 7, 2001
    Plano, Texas, Republic of
    With the exception of the pocket where the barrel links down and the hole for the slide stop, the 1911 frame is not a part that is exposed to a lot of stress. Even then, the recoil spring, slide mass and the act of linking up and down bleed off a lot of momentum.

    Titanium, being a much denser material, is about 2.5 times heavier than an equal volume of aluminum. The advantage of titanium over aluminum is that titanium is stronger, thus, if given the option, a part need not be as massive when made of titanium as opposed to aluminum.

    A 1911 frame pretty much needs to look like what it does, but given that, a titanium frame would be expected to be more durable than aluminum.

    It's hard to say how the newer aluminum and titanium alloy frames hold up simply because we haven't seen 100,000 rounds fired over 50 years in a large enough sample to make a conclusion.

    The aluminum-framed 1911s that I have examined show no unusual wear and continue to operate realiably, but again, the sample is not large enough by any means to form a conclusion about expected life.

    I suggest that in many instances, the use of titanium is more of a marketing feature than an engineering solution.

  3. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    I have no experience w/ titanium frames, sounds pricey. The older Colt aluminum frames did have a rep for cracking w/ hard use, especially +P loads. The S&W 1911PD in scandium is supposed to be an improvement, we'll see. I bought one for CCW, had it bobbed, love the weight & it handles well, only have about 500rds thru it so far. I restrict +p ammo use in it just the same. Then again, the 45acp doesn't really need +P ammo.
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2010
  4. SIGShooter

    SIGShooter Hucklebucks

    Jan 25, 2005

    What is the weight difference in a comparable model?
  5. SIGShooter

    SIGShooter Hucklebucks

    Jan 25, 2005

    Thank you for this informative post!!!

    Much appreciated!!!
  6. Rinspeed

    Rinspeed JAFO

    Feb 28, 2001
    I wouldn't worry too much about an aluminum frame holding up. Even shooting a boat load of ammo on a regular basis it's going to take a long time for it to break. There is a cop who posts on m4carbine that has a 229 in .40 that has over 300,000 rounds through it. Every part has been changed at least once except for the frame which is still the original. Say a frame only lasts 30-40K rounds, that's over $10,000 worth of ammo. Who cares if it breaks.
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2010
  7. SIGShooter

    SIGShooter Hucklebucks

    Jan 25, 2005

  8. vtbluegrass


    Dec 1, 2009
    I got my first 1911 last year. I ended up buying a barely used S&W 1911PD w/ tactical rail after swearing I wouldn't get a railed 1911, it was simply too god a deal at 675 to pass up. It is notably lighter than my buddys springer loaded. According to the S&W website it is 7 ounces lighter than the comparable all steel gun. I have put about 1000rds thru it so far with no issues and accuracy is great. Time will tell about durability but if something does break or wear excessively hopefully it will be after a long service life.
  9. SIGShooter

    SIGShooter Hucklebucks

    Jan 25, 2005

    Awesome! Thank you for the information!