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Newbie on 1911's need some help!!!!!!

Discussion in '1911 Forums' started by Beretta92guy, Dec 23, 2012.

  1. Beretta92guy


    Nov 15, 2011
    well, ive been going back and forth the past six-months about what gun to get....

    I have been into firearms for 20+ years and have owned just about ever make of handgun (Sigs, glocks, berettas, smiths, etc) but have NEVER owned a 1911 style gun.......

    and now i am seriously going to be buying one......

    some things i need help on, if you don't mind:

    "cocked and locked"??????.......just exactly how 'safe' is this??

    I keep all of my semi-autos with one in the chamber, full magazine and would do the same with the 1911, providing it is safe........I guess what worries me about this is the hammer being under full-spring tension......has a hammer ever, i guess to say "broke loose" like this without the trigger being pulled to fire the weapon????

    also, what about magazines????.....i know you can't use a beretta magazine in a glock, or a sig magazine in a smith, the way i understand 1911 is that they all use the same basic magazine, and are wilson combats the best magazines to use????

    here is the gun i am looking at: the Sig Sauer 1911, what do you all think of this gun???"+8+1+Custom+W

    also what about break in??? these guns require break-in before they run 100 percent????

    thanks for any help, info and insight into my 1911 adventure:wavey:
  2. F106 Fan

    F106 Fan

    Oct 19, 2011
    1911s have been carried that way for 100 years or more. It really depends on how you feel about the safety riding against a holster or your clothes as you move around.

    Some of my 1911s have a fairly strong detent spring and the safety will probably stay in place. A couple of the older ones, not so much. They might still stay safe but I'm not counting on it.

    So, with my advancing age, I have decided that I don't care for cocked and locked. I have rather fallen for the Sig P220 with the DA/SA action. I prefer the P220 to my Glock G21SF but in all of these things, it is a personal choice. Opinions will vary...

    Even if it did, the half-cock notches on the hammer will reengage the sear on the way down. It doesn't do the sear face very much good but it does prevent an AD. Then too, some of guns have the Series 80 firing pin block. Even if the hammer fell all the way and hit the firing pin, it still wouldn't go off.

    There are lots of opinions on 1911 magazines. None work better than the factory flat follower mag, in my experience. However, Wilson mags also work very well.

    I bought a Sig 1911 and I like it a lot. Some folks, let's just call them 'purists', don't like the external extractor. Personally, I don't care. It works fine, it's standard on a LOT of guns, and I'm not a purist. The gun is FANTASTIC!

    But nothing is perfect! I think you will find that the Sig slide doesn't fit very many holsters. You can buy the Sig factory SERPA style holster and Don Hume makes one but the lead time is lengthy! Wilson mags work well with this gun.

    Last edited: Dec 23, 2012

  3. countrygun


    Mar 9, 2012
    I have to agree along most lines with the last poster, I only differ on the Sig. They are very nice but I am not a fan of them as a "first" because of the external extractor and the benefit you lose in terms of all the holsters out there. I have close to 15 holsters that fit all my 1911s.

    I am a bit of an old fart in my belief that one should start out with a fairly basic model and shoot it before deciding what mods or features they want. In a lot of cases what someone was convinced you need to par for rom the factory is not what you may eventually want or need. Ambidextrous safeties are a pet peeve with me. I HATE THEM. It's unpleasant to me to draw my pistol and find that the wrong side lever got brushed and knocked the safety off. I spent a good amount of time in the "pucker brush" both on foot and horseback. It happens and once is too often.
  4. Steel Head

    Steel Head Tactical Cat

    Jan 1, 2010
    A cat box in WA
    From an 1911 newb:wavey:
    For carry with a good holster I fully trust a single sided safety with a strong detent with a decent holster-I'm also not a fan of ambi safeties.
    I didn't buy my 1911 for a primary carry gun though,mostly for targets.

    I've shot a few Sig 1911's-they were nice,I don't care about the external extractor but they look like a sig,goofy for a 1911.

    My new 1911 has been 100% with a good selection of ball an HP loads right from the start using stock Springfield mags and it's not a high dollar model.

    What I like about the 1911,It can be an excellent choice for military/self defense and a top class target shooter.
  5. 3rdgen40

    3rdgen40 .45 fanatic

    May 3, 2008
    I replaced the detent spring on mine with a Wilson.It's a strong spring and takes a bit of force to manipulate the thumb safety.I also whittled down the thumb safety as much as I could while leaving enough to operate it.It has never moved while I've carried it "cocked and locked".
  6. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

    Oct 23, 2000
    California & New Mexico, US
    I'll talk specifically about Colt brands. There are two main lines of products right now: Series 70 and Series 80.

    Series 70 has the same safety features as when the gun first came out back in 1911: thumb safety (to do cock n lock), grip safety (has to be depressed) and a half-cock hammer position. Some disagrees that the half-cock position is a "safety", but it's there.

    Series 80 has all of the above PLUS a firing pin block safety (like the majority of modern handguns).

    If Series 70 with at least two safety features doesn't give you the warm & fuzzy then go with Series 80.

    Now, other manufacturers also put out models that are both like Series 70 (but obviously not called Series 70 because it's a Colt moniker), and similar to Series 80. In similar to Series 80, I meant that the manufacturers would put a firing pin block safety in BUT of different designs than the Colt Series 80 but the function is essentially the same. Top of my head, Kimber and SW both have these firing pin blocks. Once again they are not considered Series 80 because that's a Colt moniker.

    Hence we have the half cock position AND the thumb safety AND the grip safety.

    Magazine is a sensitive issue with these handguns. I don't know why but probably because of the plethora of offerings and each manufacturers may have slightly different tolerances, but some guns would work well with some mag brands and some don't. Knock on wood, my Colts have been good with GI mags, Wilson, Chip McCormick, Mec-Gar, Tripp Research, ACT, King, Kimber brand (probably made by either Check-Mate or Metalform), Metalform.

    As far as Wilson Combat being the best? Hardly. Good, yes. Possibly even very good but far from the best. They have the best advertisement though.

    Probably like most mechanical things, they'd require a bit of shooting to see. Knock on wood again, mine Colts have not seem to require any break-in yet. The first shooting sessions with these Colts are set at 200-rds of ball ammo. If they were to choke, then this would be the time. Then I'll start feeding them various hollowpoints from different manufacturers. I tend to stay with the more mainstream JHPs like Hydra-Shok, Golden Saber, stuff the like that. I don't chase after the latest & greatest "percentage of stopping power" or whatever.
  7. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

    Oct 23, 2000
    California & New Mexico, US
    FYI, SIG Arms does have a "traditional" line now.
  8. bac1023


    Sep 26, 2004
    Yeah, its a shame they just didn't do that right from the start.
  9. matt_lowry123


    Nov 23, 2008
    owensboro KY
    I'd get some tripp mags, and you're ready to roll. Cocked and locked is the real mans way to carry. It always makes me laugh a bit when I see guys that carry, but not have a round chambered.
  10. Three-Five-Seven

    Three-Five-Seven Señor Mombo Millennium Member

    Aug 8, 1999
    Great Southwest
    The John Browning design has a disconnector at the heart of the fire control system. If the hammer hooks are in good shape (i.e. at specified height), it is hard to imagine that the gun can fire spontaneously.

    The U.S. Army forbade carrying the 1911 pistol 'cocked and locked' from the very beginning. The early training materials from 1912 specifically warn against this method of carrying the pistol. I'm certain there were some interesting "events" during the field trials that lead to this policy.
  11. countrygun


    Mar 9, 2012
    It would have probably helped the sales of both models in the long run.
  12. deadite

    deadite Groovy.

    Agree that was the thinking, but a lot of pretty knowledgeable guys with mucho practical experience teach otherwise. (Jeff Cooper, Clint Smith, etc.) Don't get me started with the thumb on the safety while shooting method either.. ;)

    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 2
  13. HunterLee


    Dec 18, 2012
    Carrying a 1911 in Condition 1 (magazine full, 1 in the chamber, hammer back, thumb safety on) is safe as the thumb safety blocks the sear and the grip safety blocks the trigger.
    The Check-Mate 7 round hybrid lip dimpled follower is the best magazine on the market and the closest to the original design with reconfigured feed lips to feed semi wad cutters and aggressive jhp.
    I personally prefer Colts as they use quality steel in the small parts.
  14. chargingzebra


    Sep 15, 2012
    I'm also pretty new to 1911s, I have an S&W 1911, great shooter but a bit of a bear to carry unless it's cold out. Talking with a guy at the range who said that one should store a 1911 cocked and locked, and that they were designed to do so. I carry condition 1 and store the gun in the case in condition 2, so I don't have to unchanged and rechamber the round, possibly resulting in bullet setback. I drop the hammer to ease tension on the spring while I'm not carrying. Is he correct in that it should remain condition 1, or is what I'm doing okay, or should I just unload it entirely and drop the hammer?