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The forged vs cast thing is driving me up the wall

Discussion in '1911 Forums' started by mr00jimbo, Oct 17, 2010.

  1. mr00jimbo

    mr00jimbo

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    I can't get a straight answer. I am saving up some dough for a 1911 and I figure a thousand or so should do it.

    But I can't seem to get an answer whether or not a cast frame is going to be inferior, or if forged is better. It seems people say a good cast can be good, but will never touch forged.

    So now I am looking at Sig Sauer's offerings in 1911s, and I thought they were forged. Nope, cast....apparently. But they're very highly regarded. Same with the STI Trojan, which is supposed to be an amazing gun. Cast frame.

    So then people will say, "Well there you go, great guns use cast." But if you go up the STI ladder, they start becoming forged frames, which makes me believe that the casting was a budget alternative and is used to keep cost down (at the expense of strength/quality).

    Then Caspian, a not cheap 1911 frame, is cast. So are most Dan Wessons, which again, aren't cheap. Hell, many competition 1911s, that see high round counts, are cast.

    But you can buy a much cheaper Springfield that's forged.

    I know I will never shoot as many rounds through this gun as to test the strength of the metal. But it drives me nuts to think the gun may potentially use inferior methods or frame or whatever. Kind of like buying a luxury car and finding out the leather is actually vinyl to cut down on costs, or it has hubcaps.

    It seems it would bother me, with what I know now, to spend good money on a cast-frame 1911, not because I worry about its long term reliability but because they 'cut a corner' in making it when others do it 'the right way.'

    Somebody set me straight here. :whistling:
     
  2. bac1023

    bac1023

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    I wouldn't worry about it, quite frankly.

    The cast slide is what brings concern.








    .
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2010

  3. Quack

    Quack Rent this space

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    it's not an issue (just like MIM) if it's made properly.

    the before 2009, all Dan Wessons (except for the Valor) were cast.

    Reason forged Springfields are less expensive is because they are forged in Brazil.
     
  4. bac1023

    bac1023

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    Sigs I thought were forged.


    ...or at least I know they were when I bought mine.
     
  5. Quack

    Quack Rent this space

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    weren't teh original Sig's built on Caspian frames before they moved to in-house manufacturing?
     
  6. bac1023

    bac1023

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    I thought they were the forged Caspians though.

    God only knows. :dunno:
     
  7. syr74

    syr74

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    Personal experience in the manufacturing field has given me a bias toward forged components, but that same experience has taught me that a good casting can be better than a poor forging.....so there are a lot of variables.

    Colt and Wilson Combat both use forgings and the quality of the steel used within these and the heat treatment applied to them seems to receive a lot of accolades in both cases. Then again, I spoke with somebody from Olympic Arms the other day who confirmed with me that both their frames and slides are produced from castings, the latter of which automatically leads me to prop an eyebrow; and yet the Schuetzen Pistol Works has a very good reputation for quality and durability as best as I can tell.

    I think the solution is for me to buy a collection of 1911's as large as Bac's making certain that I get a good variety of types of manufacture so I can personally determine how this all works. Now to go tell the wife that this needs to be done for the good of the 1911 community at large......
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2010
  8. mr00jimbo

    mr00jimbo

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    I thought so too, google has brought me to a couple sites that claim they're cast, but nothing solid.
     
  9. Quack

    Quack Rent this space

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    i'mm 99% sure that i recall that the Sig/Caspian frames were cast.
     
  10. CA_DUDE

    CA_DUDE Dude here.

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    FWIW, after Browning/FN started making .40 S&W Hi Powers, they started using cast frames over forged. Can't remember if there was a problem with frames or rails cracking. As far as I understand (I'm probably completely wrong) Forging is a bit harder, but more brittle. Cast are a little softer but a little more resilient. I have a Kimber II, and I thought they were forged, but now who knows. Doesn't bother me in the slightest. I don't think a quality 1911 with a cast frame is inferior in any way.
     
  11. Quack

    Quack Rent this space

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    Early article (~2004) on the Sig GSR.

    http://www.gunweek.com/2004/feature0310.html

     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2010
  12. bac1023

    bac1023

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    That's cool.

    Its been said many times that the frames were forged, but that shows you that you can't assume anything.
     
  13. solomansousana

    solomansousana

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    Frankly, unless you plan on putting several hundred thousand rounds through it, I wouldn't worry. For me, my PERSONAL PREFERENCE is forged, as I do anywhere from 1500 to 3000 rounds a month. That said, I've a Safari Arms Matchmaster, forged frame with over 120k rounds without issues, I've also got an Essex cast frame with near the same round count and it's still looking brand new.

    If it's well made and maintained, and you don't use over pressured ammo all the time, you shouldn't have an issue either way you go.

    LOL, I've also got a Caspian Arms Titanium 1911 frame with almost all titanium parts mated to a Colt Gold Cup National Match stainless slide and I don't think there's enough rounds in the world to wear it down.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2010
  14. GVFlyer

    GVFlyer Senior Member

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    I have an early Sig Sauer Nitron Black 1911 GSR. It has a cast Caspian frame and I like it.

    [​IMG]

    Here's another excellent old review of the Sig 1911 GSR that reflects the build on my gun.

    http://www.handgunsmag.com/featured_handguns/granite_061404/
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2010
  15. bac1023

    bac1023

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  16. ShipWreck

    ShipWreck Beretta 92 Nut!

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    The big question is - Was the actual Forge cast or not? [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  17. Quack

    Quack Rent this space

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    well you've heard the term M4gery.

    the Sig is a 1911forgery :rofl:
     
  18. bac1023

    bac1023

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    :animlol:
     
  19. GVFlyer

    GVFlyer Senior Member

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    Maybe, does it matter? I had the Sig gunsmiths do the Trigger Enhancement and Action Enhancement packages on this gun, the results qualifying it to be my full size 1911 carry gun. The trigger now breaks cleanly at 4.0 lbs, the minimum for a carry gun (in my view).
     
  20. remat

    remat

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    Trivia...
    The early FBI 9mm to 40 conversions found that the forged frames were to too soft to handle the 40 and they went to the harder beefed up cast frames, it is now standard on both the 9mm and 40's.

    More related trivia.....S&W M&P strikers are now MIM because they are harder.

    If you don't like cast, Colt is a good choice as there are only 2 or 3 cast parts in it.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2010