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Springfield Operator LW- A couple questions..

Discussion in '1911 Forums' started by paleroseglow, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. paleroseglow


    Aug 29, 2009
    Hey guys,

    I have been looking at getting my first 1911 for a few months now and I finally decided on the SA Operator LW! I do have a few questions about it that I was hoping ya'll could help me with... (If there has been a thread on this already then I wouldn't mind checking that out, too.)

    I was wondering about the durability of the alloy frame. Is it going to last a while? What should I expect/need to do to make it last? (I probably shoot 1-2 times a month which is about 500 rounds a month.)

    Also, I know that recoil will be a little more, but i am fine with that. I am 6'1" and got big hands. But what about the armory cote? From what I read/hear it isn't the best finish... I do know that it would be easy/cheap to refinish but could I refinish it silver if I wanted to? I just don't know much about refinishing. I got a G17 and I haven't ever been interested in it.

    Any comments/experiences/knowledge is really appreciated!
  2. awpk03s


    Apr 1, 2007
    I had a Springfield Champion LW Operator about a year ago and it was a fine pistol before I sadly sold it to fund my Dan Wesson buying spree.

    I think the Armory Kote is pretty good, have read good things about it as well actually. I wouldn't worry about the aluminum frame. The barrel is fully ramped (at least mine was in the Champion model) which will reduce the wear and tear on the frame. Sig pistols (220, 226, 229, etc) have aluminum alloy frames and shoot for many many many thousands of trouble free rounds (associated with frame use/wear anyway). Your pistol should do the same.

    If you should ever want to refinish the pistol, there are certainly options, however I believe you will be limited somewhat because of the aluminum frame. Some of the more advanced metal treatments aren't compatible with aluminum, but you can do whatever you want to the slide (Robar NP3 for example).

    One thought though - it sounds like you're trying to perhaps talk yourself into something that may not be exactly what you're after - for example, don't settle for an aluminum alloy frame or a black finished slide if that's not really what you want. 1911s are expensive pistols - try to get what you want the first time you buy one.

  3. BrazosCoTX


    Mar 10, 2008
    Bryan, TX
    ... and I love it. No issues at all. Nice trigger, pistol is far more accurate than I am. Finish has held up despite frequent holstering/drawing from a G-Code kydex paddle.

    Only change I made was swapping out the 2 piece FLGR for the traditional 1911 one piece guide rod. Made disassembly much easier, and the 2 piece had a bad habit of unscrewing.

    As for the frame holding up-- I will never shoot enough rounds to wear it out, and I shoot about 100-150 rounds per month (230gr FMJ).

    It's my favorite gun, but then again, I'm not afraid of the alloy framed guns-- just bought a S&W 327PD.
  4. cessnastud

    cessnastud Rawr!!!

    May 27, 2005
    Flavor Country
    I'm unsure of the round count, but the finish on mine still looks great and no appreciable wear to the frame. I sent the gun back for some warranty work, but she's running like a top now. Great little carry piece, no regrets.
  5. Officer's Match

    Officer's Match S.R.D. v

    Jun 22, 2007
    Lancaster, Ohio
    I believe NP3 works great on aluminum, and would further protect frame wear on bearing surfaces.
  6. chuckman


    Nov 9, 2006
    Durham, NC
    Aluminum frames on 1911s are not a problem unless you shoot a lot and very often....MUCH more than 500 rounds/month, and over many years.

    This is a great gun and you should not hesitate to get one unless you one something else.
  7. paleroseglow


    Aug 29, 2009
    I appreciate all replies, very helpful, thank you!

    But don't get me wrong, I LOVE this gun. I looked at every 1911 out there it seems (S&W, Colt, Kimber, RIA, Dan Wesson) and as soon as I got that gun in my hands, I just had to have it! (It was the 4" one though and I wanted the 5" but they didn't have it in stock) I asked as many questions as I could possibly think of about the LW Operator compared to all other 1911's at the gun stores I frequent. After finally deciding to order it, I was curious about what people online had to say and their were a couple (just a few) negative remarks so I wanted to get that cleared up is all.

    I did so much research before I got my G17, and I am very happy that I did so. I do feel like I could have done a little bit more research this time, but it sounds like I am a little worried about nothing. I know I will love this gun. About the silver frame and stuff, that was mere curiosity.. I just like to know my options.
  8. awpk03s


    Apr 1, 2007
    You'll be pleased with it. The 4" Champion model with the bull barrel is very accurate. Snappy recoil, even compared to other 45s like Sig 220 or Glock 21, but still quite manageable.
  9. rangersniper308


    Apr 12, 2009
    NW Ohio
    I bought a Springfield L/W Champion Operator and liked it so much I bought it's baby brother a L/W Micro Operator

    I love them carry every day and 0 finish wear so far