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View Full Version : Considering Rock Island Armory 1911


OHOD
09-07-2012, 7:25 PM
I was at Elite Arms today checking out the 1911's.

I'm thinking of getting a Rock Island Armory 1911.

What is the current opinions about said pistol?

Don't say use the search function, I want to hear current, as of now opinions.

Shapes And Colors
09-07-2012, 7:28 PM
The roll marks are beyond ugly on the new ones, but they work reliably. I say go for it.

OHOD
09-07-2012, 7:29 PM
Forgot to add, nice folks up there at Elite Arms.
Got me a new main gun shop. :thumbsup:

Darklyte27
09-07-2012, 7:33 PM
It just feels right, shoots the best out of my M&P and Sig 2022

heres my first time shooting it with 3 inch targets at 15 yards

Ive gotten a lot better since.
Theres a link in my sig for a picture

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v482/lcplwan/IMAG0137.jpg

Johnnykck
09-07-2012, 7:34 PM
I voted "best on the market" as in best bang for your buck. Yes there are better ones but at three to four times the price. Mine has been flawless for several thousand rounds including hollowpoints.

bishop2queen's6
09-07-2012, 7:36 PM
Do it. RIA 1911 GI is my first handgun.

Darklyte27
09-07-2012, 7:37 PM
my tactical model was 454$? from buds i think something around there too. Ive shot a friends springfield and felt just the same, except his shot high for me.
for a 450$ 1911 vs his 7-800$ springfield the rest of my money went towards 1k rds

Bartin
09-07-2012, 7:39 PM
Use the search function. Opinions from TWO WEEKS AGO (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=611014&highlight=ria) are still perfectly current. What do you think changed since then? That's one of many recent threads on RIA 1911's within the past few months.

USE THE SEARCH FUNCTION

Darklyte27
09-07-2012, 7:52 PM
Use the search function. Opinions from TWO WEEKS AGO (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=611014&highlight=ria) are still perfectly current. What do you think changed since then? That's one of many recent threads on RIA 1911's within the past few months.

USE THE SEARCH FUNCTION

pretty much +1

my opinion still is the same on those 3 pistols
:D

rplusplus
09-07-2012, 7:55 PM
OHOD.... which RI 1911 I was looking at these at Turners and for the price I would love to know your experience... Range Report on it. From what I have seen there are two different (maybe more) models. One with tighter sights than the other.

chozenfew805
09-07-2012, 7:59 PM
Definitely a great entry level 1911 with great customer service and decently priced!

curtru
09-07-2012, 8:11 PM
I love mine iv put a lot of ammo through it, handles nice and shoots what I feed it

OHOD
09-07-2012, 8:19 PM
Definitely a great entry level 1911 with great customer service and decently priced!

Have you had a customer service experience you could share?

OHOD
09-07-2012, 8:23 PM
Use the search function. Opinions from TWO WEEKS AGO (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=611014&highlight=ria) are still perfectly current. What do you think changed since then? That's one of many recent threads on RIA 1911's within the past few months.

USE THE SEARCH FUNCTION

But my thread has a poll.
;)

Ducman
09-07-2012, 8:28 PM
are you a POLL dancer? I just noticed that all threads you starts comes in a POLL :43: enough already it gets old :rolleyes::rolleyes:

Hughes500Pilot
09-07-2012, 8:44 PM
I just bought one from Turner's for $400 with the CalGuns discount. Took it to the range and put 300 rounds through it with zero problems.

There are two minor things I do not like about it. The grips and the magazine base plate. The grips are thick and "cheap looking." So I bought some USGI grips and put them on. Now it looks much better to me. The other thing I do not like is the base of the magazine sticks out the bottom of the gun. Dont get me wrong, the magazine works fine. I just like the cleaner look of the magazine flush with the bottom of the gun. -Steve


http://img194.imageshack.us/img194/2726/ria1911a1a.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/194/ria1911a1a.jpg/)

http://img833.imageshack.us/img833/3427/ria1911a1b.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/833/ria1911a1b.jpg/)

Gun_Owner_901
09-07-2012, 8:47 PM
I picked up mine last week haven't fired it yet but feels really really nice.

robcoe
09-07-2012, 8:51 PM
I had one in 9mm/.38 super, still kind of regret selling it.

For the price, you can't beat them.

wash
09-07-2012, 8:54 PM
Everyone knows about the customer service because lots of RIAs have to get sent back before they work right.

It's a Filipino copy of a 1911 with a cast frame made by Armscorp.

I have a low opinion of them because when I see a 1911, I see a reliable, accurate and durable handgun with quality components. It costs at least twice the price of an RIA to actually get that (unless you find a quality used 1911 somewhere).

When I buy a 1911, I want a forged steel frame that is within USGI Ordnance spec and zero critical parts made of MIM. That should be decent from the beginning and a suitable base for a custom 1911 if you want to go that way.

Quality is going to retain value, even used.

Spend a little more for quality.

Also avoid guns with series 80 firing pin blocks or any other added foolishness. It's not necessary unless you like dropping a loaded gun all the time and the original design is easier to re-assemble after a detail strip. No one who knows what they are looking for wants that crap.

Mongoblack23
09-07-2012, 8:55 PM
rock island match .45. serious tack driver out to 30 yards. haven't really tried past that.

Ripon83
09-07-2012, 8:55 PM
I'd recommend getting the tactical model over the GI, prob $50/70 difference, better sites, trigger, hammer, far better value. I'd also recommend 9mm over 45 but it's not on the list.

skosh69
09-07-2012, 8:56 PM
Everyone knows about the customer service because lots of RIAs have to get sent back before they work right.

It's a Filipino copy of a 1911 with a cast frame made by Armscorp.

I have a low opinion of them because when I see a 1911, I see a reliable, accurate and durable handgun with quality components. It costs at least twice the price of an RIA to actually get that (unless you find a quality used 1911 somewhere).

When I buy a 1911, I want a forged steel frame that is within USGI Ordnance spec and zero critical parts made of MIM. That should be decent from the beginning and a suitable base for a custom 1911 if you want to go that way.

Quality is going to retain value, even used.

Spend a little more for quality.

Also avoid guns with series 80 firing pin blocks or any other added foolishness. It's not necessary unless you like dropping a loaded gun all the time and the original design is easier to re-assemble after a detail strip. No one who knows what they are looking for wants that crap.


Good lord what a rant. Should the op spend more for a brazillian made copy???

I'd take a Rock over a S/A anyday and twice on Sunday!

Brandon04GT
09-07-2012, 8:59 PM
Everyone knows about the customer service because lots of RIAs have to get sent back before they work right.

It's a Filipino copy of a 1911 with a cast frame made by Armscorp.

I have a low opinion of them because when I see a 1911, I see a reliable, accurate and durable handgun with quality components. It costs at least twice the price of an RIA to actually get that (unless you find a quality used 1911 somewhere).

When I buy a 1911, I want a forged steel frame that is within USGI Ordnance spec and zero critical parts made of MIM. That should be decent from the beginning and a suitable base for a custom 1911 if you want to go that way.

Quality is going to retain value, even used.

Spend a little more for quality.

Also avoid guns with series 80 firing pin blocks or any other added foolishness. It's not necessary unless you like dropping a loaded gun all the time and the original design is easier to re-assemble after a detail strip. No one who knows what they are looking for wants that crap.

Oh really? So I guess even all Kimbers and Springfields don't qualify either...since their hammer, sears, and disconnectors are all MIM from the factory...Unless those are not considered critical parts to you.

ShootinXs
09-07-2012, 9:12 PM
Everyone knows about the customer service because lots of RIAs have to get sent back before they work right.

It's a Filipino copy of a 1911 with a cast frame made by Armscorp.

I have a low opinion of them because when I see a 1911, I see a reliable, accurate and durable handgun with quality components. It costs at least twice the price of an RIA to actually get that (unless you find a quality used 1911 somewhere).

When I buy a 1911, I want a forged steel frame that is within USGI Ordnance spec and zero critical parts made of MIM. That should be decent from the beginning and a suitable base for a custom 1911 if you want to go that way.

Quality is going to retain value, even used.

Spend a little more for quality.

Also avoid guns with series 80 firing pin blocks or any other added foolishness. It's not necessary unless you like dropping a loaded gun all the time and the original design is easier to re-assemble after a detail strip. No one who knows what they are looking for wants that crap.





HOGWASH !!! enuff said.:slap:

Brandon04GT
09-07-2012, 9:12 PM
BTW anyone considering buying one of these and has a Turner's within reach, they have it on a CG special again :thumbsup:

I still have a light scar mark thingy on the web of my hand from the grip safety cutting into it....and this was from like a month ago. RIA should do something bout their grip safeties!

Josh3239
09-07-2012, 9:23 PM
A lot of my customers seem to like them and swear by them. A lot of them like to claim they are just as good, if not better, than Kimbers. I don't know about that, but they are definetly good starter 1911s and good for projects. I plan to pick one up, I plan to customize the crap out of it. Refinish it all, change caliber, rip out all the MIM, etc. Still love my Springfields, but I am no 1911 snob. Just make sure you check it before you leave with it, RIA doesn't have the highest QC, we had a smoothbore come through the shop once.

InGrAM
09-07-2012, 9:26 PM
A lot more people like them than don't. The ones who don't are wrong and simply hate the fact that a $500 1911 works just as well as a $2000+ 1911 (reliability wise). It really pisses people off for some reason, and they can't help but bash RIA's because of it.

OP just buy one and join the crowds of happy costumers.

Rightwinger
09-07-2012, 9:38 PM
My First 1911 was a Rock Island Armory "Tactical". Purchased it new about 10 months ago. So far have about 200 rounds through it. No problems what so ever. I did get a trigger job done on it @3lbs and had the creep smoothed out - Man what a difference. Also had new sites installed (white dot) and replaced the cheap looking grips with some nice cocobolo ones..
http://i85.photobucket.com/albums/k65/tirefryin66/20120823_184355.jpg
http://i85.photobucket.com/albums/k65/tirefryin66/20120823_184322.jpg

sfhondapilot
09-07-2012, 9:47 PM
I have the tactical with full rail and it is a pleasure to shoot.

ICONIC
09-07-2012, 9:52 PM
For the price can't go wrong with the Rock Island for an entry level 1911. Get rid of the grips they are bulky and ugly.

Lead Waster
09-07-2012, 9:53 PM
Rightwinger, did you remove the giant billboard on the slide? How much was the trigger work?

sholling
09-07-2012, 9:56 PM
It's a decent starter 1911 but I'd really rather see you save up for a Springfield Armory Loaded or better yet a stainless S&W SW1911 for bit over $900. You'll get world class lifetime warranties and in the case of the S&W a great trigger and fit and finish and all of the options you'd want to add late are included. Then save up for some Esmeralda or Sarge grips and have a practical work of art. Whatever you get feed it from really good magazines because that's usually the source of any problems.

If you do buy a RIA I strongly advise getting the Tactical model because the included upgrades are ones you will want later.

ParanoidCivilian
09-07-2012, 9:57 PM
I have the non-rail tactical version. Nice shooter, but the sights suck in low light or against a dark/black background. Overall I give it a 8.5 in the entry level category. Buy it and have it as your "learner" 1911.

Rightwinger
09-07-2012, 10:01 PM
Rightwinger, did you remove the giant billboard on the slide? How much was the trigger work?

Mine didn't come with the billboard on the slide like you see on most, not sure why. RIA is there on the slide but it's faint. If I member right the trigger job was around $85.00. It's like having a different (better) gun.

Brandon04GT
09-07-2012, 10:08 PM
You peeps with the newer style white billboard RIA 1911's can cover up the logo with some cold bluing. It actually comes out looking not so bad. I did it to mine but didn't do a very good job partially cause I think my bluing solution is contaminated.

OHOD
09-08-2012, 6:09 AM
It's a decent starter 1911 but I'd really rather see you save up for a Springfield Armory Loaded or better yet a stainless S&W SW1911 for bit over $900. You'll get world class lifetime warranties and in the case of the S&W a great trigger and fit and finish and all of the options you'd want to add late are included. Then save up for some Esmeralda or Sarge grips and have a practical work of art. Whatever you get feed it from really good magazines because that's usually the source of any problems.

If you do buy a RIA I strongly advise getting the Tactical model because the included upgrades are ones you will want later.

Good advice.
The guy showed me a Springfield and a SW. Both very very nice. I got to handle a Kimber as well...that thing was light weight big time.

Now you got me thinking. :rolleyes:

OHOD
09-08-2012, 6:11 AM
I'd recommend getting the tactical model over the GI, prob $50/70 difference, better sites, trigger, hammer, far better value. I'd also recommend 9mm over 45 but it's not on the list.

Other than ammo cost, why would a 9mm be better?

Darklyte27
09-08-2012, 7:52 AM
Dont limit yourself to just 1 1911, I will def get a higher end one later on.

I just purchased a XDm in 40.

PS, i know my groups arent 1 hole with multiple shots but at least i posted a pic for proof, and thats a 3 inch target at 15 yards not 10 not 7 hehe

sholling
09-08-2012, 8:11 AM
Good advice.
The guy showed me a Springfield and a SW. Both very very nice. I got to handle a Kimber as well...that thing was light weight big time.

Now you got me thinking. :rolleyes:
I own Kimbers, a Springfield, and a S&W and I'm not a big fan of Kimber's funky engineering, short warranty or hit or miss service but they do make a pretty weapon. If you want light you may want to look at a S&W SW1911 PD which is a commander size 1911 with a lightweight alloy frame. The thing to remember with alloy framed 1911s is that you need to use magazines with anti-tilt followers to avoid gouging the feed ramp. Steel framed 1911s don't have that issue but like any 1911 they want lots of spring power in their magazines.

TAS
09-08-2012, 9:12 AM
Though I already have several other 1911's, I would consider getting one even though I haven't personally shot one. Most of the reputation it gets lean towards 'good value for the money' so why not? If it were me, I would stick with the .45 if it's your first one. Updates can come later but I would at least try to get one with decent sites out of the box so you don't have to change them right away.

The 1911 is a fun platform so be careful, you may not be able to stop at just one!

Fishslayer
09-08-2012, 10:12 AM
Unless you're after the retro GI look or want a base gun to practice your pistol smithing pony up the extra $60-ish for the Tactical model. You won't be sorry.

Mine's about 3 years old now & I've been very happy with it.

Ignore the $2K 1911 fanboi snobs. The RIA work just fine. You will find very few gripes on it and when there are the CS guys in Pahrump will make it right.

Of course, you could Google Kimber & find ZERO gripes and high praise for their stellar CS. [/sarcasm];)

wash
09-08-2012, 2:13 PM
I have one from another importer but it still an Armscorp, Charles Daly, I no longer shoot any other as far as entry level, any gun can be considered entry level cuz there is always something a little more refined not that refinements make them any better. Try one, shoot one, and I know you will buy one. PM me and I will let you try mine, Now thats confidence.
Same here, I bought a Charles Daly but mine is a big POS.

Everything works but the slide looks like someone did a bad refinishing job on it and butchered the sight dovetails, the frame is very rough if you look inside the mag well, under the mainspring housing and inside the dust cover and speaking of the dust cover, it's thinner on one side than the other. The small parts look bad, the sear looks like the tip got bent before they machined the engagement area, the disconnector isn't symmetrical from side to side and the thumb safety is a crummy ambi type that I tried to replace with a single sided one but the frame isn't cut to spec so a standard 1911 won't fit.

So there is no reason to send it in for a warranty repair but I would expect to find a better toy in a box of cracker jacks.

When it comes to firearm purchases, I feel like I get my money's worth if I pay for premium materials, quality machine work and quality control.

An RIA will always have a cast frame and quality machine work is pretty much absent.

Guns have a very long lifetime and when I'm done with mine or they are pried from my cold dead hands, I want them to still have value. Quality, reliability and accuracy are valuable.

I will probably ask for my Charles Daly to be buried with me because I would be embarrassed to bequest it to anyone I cared about.

toby
09-08-2012, 2:23 PM
^^^^ There will always be a POS come down the pipe, I have one too it's a 1975 Remington 700 I won't even go into details but I have not even looked at it in 30 years.

RED VASQUEZ
09-08-2012, 2:36 PM
I didn't vote "best 1911 on the market", because I've never played with a Nighthawk, or Wilson Combat, or TRP Operator, or any of the other high priced 1911s. Kimbers, SAs, and others I've shot do seem like they're better built, but I still prefer my old school RIA. No frills, no extended goofy stuff, even feeds hollow point from crappy no-name CTD mags.

Buy one.

Lead Waster
09-08-2012, 4:10 PM
The fact is that the 1911 trigger is unique in it's awesomeness. The only way to get that is to buy a 1911. A $500 1911 still gets you that trigger. Maybe it's not as light or smooth, but it's still pretty amazing.

I would say that the RIA has the best trigger of any gun that costs $500 (or less). I love my CZ-75 triggers, but you need to get the competition hammer to get that good CZ trigger.

If you want into the club, the RIA Tactical is the way to go. If you want keys to the executive bathroom at the club, that will cost you more.

My Tactical is pretty good. Yes, more expensive 1911s are "better" in that they are smoother and have lighter triggers. As for the "Prettiness" of the gun, I personally don't care. In fact I'm the opposite of most people here, I like a really roughed up looking gun. Like on that has been used by Clint Eastwood in some action movie. The good guys always have the utilitarian beater guns, the evil masterminds all carry the pretty shiny nickel plated 1911s! :p

Triad
09-08-2012, 4:22 PM
I love my 9mm Compact.
For what I spent on it, I am EXTRAORDINARILY happy. Possibly my favorite pistol right now, and I would carry it more if I could find more magazines for it.

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f66/Triad47/photo2.jpg
Only changed the grips

Furncliff
09-08-2012, 4:50 PM
My second RIA 1911 is a mid size 9mm. I'm the second owner and it came to me with failure to extract issues. It took two trips but RIA fixed it. Communication with the gunsmiths and the shipping dept was excellent. RIA payed ALL shipping expenses.The gun runs 100% now. My first RIA is a .45 is 5 years old and runs very well, has a great trigger and is accurate. I'm a believer. Good stuff doesn't have to be expensive. It's not very pretty, but it works (nice aftermarket grips help a lot).

frankm
09-08-2012, 4:52 PM
I think it's a good pistol, just like pappy's .45. And if you hurt it, you won't cry cause it's not some "sophisticated" gun.

wash
09-08-2012, 6:36 PM
^^^^ There will always be a POS come down the pipe, I have one too it's a 1975 Remington 700 I won't even go into details but I have not even looked at it in 30 years.
Armscor just seems to drop more pieces than a Pakistani in a dysentery clinic.

As far as getting a great trigger in a $500 RIA: doubtful.

On the other hand, when I put used USGI parts in a Norinco frame I bought for $100 (with slide), it gave me a very crisp trigger, not overly heavy and with no fitting (ten times better than my Charles Daly which is really heavy and gritty). I'm not worrying about it breaking either. My Colt takeoff thumb safety fit too, the same one that didn't fit the Charles Daly.

Hold out for something better (even if it's a used Chinese gun).

opie4386
09-08-2012, 9:19 PM
Took a friend shooting for the first time in his life and he loved my 1911. He was going to pony up for it but decided to wait for a more expensive model. Reason was the roll marks im going to try and find him a loade or colt gold cup

Ripon83
09-08-2012, 10:21 PM
My long story, simply put, I ran into an infested rattle snake area and ran out of ammo.....since I switched to the 9mm I can carry a lot more ammo. I also have smaller hands and though the two caliber guns are identical I can shoot the 9 a whole lot easier. I dropped the 45 from my collection completely after finding my first 9 in 1911.


Other than ammo cost, why would a 9mm be better?

xibunkrlilkidsx
09-08-2012, 10:24 PM
The roll marks are beyond ugly on the new ones, but they work reliably. I say go for it.
i agree my dad has the newer one with the gigantic ugly roll mark while mine is much more subdued.


Unless you are wanting a pure cosmetic clone of the GI model, get the tactical for the better sites.

love mine. shoots everytime

Tee Why
09-08-2012, 11:25 PM
I have the GI compact model to go along with my Sig Sauer 1911 TTT and the RIA is a fine gun which is really fun to shoot.
I agree that if this is your main gun to spend the $60 if you can and get the tactical model mainly for the better sights, but also for the bevertail safety, skelontonized hammer, and a better trigger. The GI sights are not very useful. I also agree that the grips are not the best, they are thick and the lack of checkering makes them too slippery imo.

I have the new giant rollmarks as well and while I prefer to not have it, it's not a deal breaker for me.

The trigger is probably the nicest one you'll find for a gun under $500 after break in IMO but it's not as nice as a 1911 costing $1000 or more. The trigger on my TTT is soooo much nicer, but I guess if you spend about $100 for a trigger job, that would take care of treat as well.

Having said all that, IMO, the tactical version would make a very nice affordable entry level 1911 IMO.

Lead Waster
09-08-2012, 11:40 PM
How about this, pretend the RIA Tactical is NOT a 1911. Is it worth $500 then? Say it's just a non-1911 gun. It's not bad for $500. It has a better (IMHO) trigger than a Glock of similar price, and it's all steel.

I think that Wash guy just has a massive hate-on for Armscor, but it's always nice to hear both sides of the story. You have some love and some hate.

InGrAM
09-09-2012, 2:35 AM
How about this, pretend the RIA Tactical is NOT a 1911. Is it worth $500 then? Say it's just a non-1911 gun. It's not bad for $500. It has a better (IMHO) trigger than a Glock of similar price, and it's all steel.

I think that Wash guy just has a massive hate-on for Armscor, but it's always nice to hear both sides of the story. You have some love and some hate.

Well, you know how it is. If someone has one bad experience with a firearm it means that every single firearm from that company and any other related company is garbage. Never mind the mass amounts of positive reviews and consumer experiences. It wouldn't be that, that one certain firearm was a lemon it must mean that every single one is a POS.