View Full Version : Basic entry level 1911

06-21-2010, 1:46 PM
I want to get a no frills basic entry level 1911. I used to own a first gen Kimber Custom Classic back in the days but sold it. Now I want to get back into 1911's. I have no need for all the extras. Just want a nice shooter without the high price. I've narrowed it down to either the SA Mil Spec or Para Ordnance GI Expert. What do you guys think is the better pistol and why?

06-21-2010, 1:48 PM
I've never handled a Para but I own the SA Mil Spec and I like it. I'm a no frills person myself too. I only changed out the grips to the Hogue rubber grips and been loving it ever since.

06-21-2010, 1:50 PM
I would get the milspec

06-21-2010, 1:52 PM
SA Mil Spec

Black Majik
06-21-2010, 1:53 PM
+2. SA Milspec.

06-21-2010, 2:05 PM
Why? Is the SA that much better? I know the Para has a ramped barrel and skeletonized hammer.

06-21-2010, 2:51 PM
Mil-Spec owner here...

06-21-2010, 2:53 PM
either one. put if you're looking for a cheap, reliable, no frills 1911, check out RIA

Super Spy
06-21-2010, 3:40 PM
+1 on the RIA, can't beat the price, they work just fine, and aren't picky about ammo.

06-21-2010, 3:51 PM
Why? Is the SA that much better? I know the Para has a ramped barrel and skeletonized hammer.

SA has a far better warranty. Para has been having some quality control problems lately.

06-21-2010, 3:54 PM
what kind of problems?

06-21-2010, 4:03 PM
what kind of problems?

From another Forum.
Seems to be a run on bad ejectors at Para lately....

I'll second the motion to ask them to send you one, and let a local smith handle it. Turn-around-time at Para is somewhat outlandish at this juncture, and the shipping costs for the whole gun probably would exceed whatever you'd pay the smith.

While Para probably could be induced to reimburse you for shipping, that'll take a while, too.

If you've never installed one before, it's probably a good time to learn, too, if you're so inclined, but a drill press is a good idea, so you need to check with the spouse/significant other first ....

(There's a little bitty pin through the frame that holds one of the two large pins on the bottom of the ejector. Easy enough to deal with, but you have to run a very tiny drill through the frame to cut a hole for the little pin in the new ejector.)

Want a laugh? Seems like yesterday, although I'd guess a year or so ago, that we were seeing reports of ejectors that were too soft, and getting bent (usually by the magazine) into causing problems. Guess they fixed that by making them more likely to break ....

Just between us, Para probably wouldn't say a word, warranty-wise, if you just popped out and picked up a Wilson ejector and (had it) installed.... In the past they were very good about stuff like this where the quality of the work was good.

06-21-2010, 4:07 PM

Ive had Springers, Colt's and RIA's. Ive shot many kimbers, S&W, etc. Never even held a para though.

That being said bang for the buck I have never shot a better gun than RIA 1911. Its a good, all steel, faithful reproduction of the 1911. All colt parts are interchangeable and the warranty service is outstanding. Go to M1911.org and check out the RIA section for more info.

06-21-2010, 4:14 PM
SA has pretty good customer service too. I had some issues with the sight dots on my XD coming off. I called SA and they issued me an RMA so they could look at it. I got the slide on my XD back in less than 3 weeks when they told me it would take about 4-6 weeks and everything was taken care of at no charge.

Never had an issues with my SA MilSpec but if I did I'm sure I would get the same level of service as I did for my XD.

06-21-2010, 4:39 PM
What about the G.I. model? Do u really need a lowered ejection port? And how's the reliability? I'm kinda diggin the OD green one.

06-21-2010, 4:49 PM
What about the G.I. model? Do u really need a lowered ejection port? And how's the reliability? I'm kinda diggin the OD green one.


06-21-2010, 5:01 PM
+1 on the RIA

I was recently in the same boat, got an RIA tactical and have 0 complaints so far. (about the gun... 45acp is expensive though!)

06-21-2010, 5:31 PM
I haven't owned either but the Para GI isn't on the roster. So unless you are a LEO or your going to do an inter family transfer from out of state you will have a tough time finding one. Mark

06-21-2010, 5:52 PM
+1 for RIA :D

06-21-2010, 7:34 PM
I appreciate the link for getting more reliability out of a 1911. It's a great read. Mr. Marshall has some real insight and experience. It also answered the question posted about the lowered ejector port.


06-22-2010, 5:37 AM
I have a milspec , and the only problem I have is once in awhile a shell will pop you on the forehead but not all of the time, but other than that I have had it for years

06-22-2010, 5:42 AM
The mil spec is a nice gun for the money, the one I had featured a nice trigger. Unfortunately, mine shot very low, had to send it back for repair. Its accuracy was fine for a combat weapon, but I own a competitors 1911 that was only a buck fifty more and shoots like a tack driver. Guess it depends more on the look you want than anything else. They all can be customized into what you want!

06-22-2010, 5:44 AM
Any SA, or why not another Kimber?...I'd avoid para