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Old 08-18-2006, 08:48 PM   #1
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Best (in production) .45 on the market?

I know this may be a slightly heated debate. I have chimed in earlier on this forum about an odd ODI .45 that I picked up and recieved some great advice. I'm wondering how much more info I can milk you guys for.

Aside from the ODI, I also own a Glock 30 and I am looking to purchase a Glock 21. I am finding that I REALLY like the .45 and am wondering if there are any personal favorites out there. No need for any stratosphere priced items. $850 would be the absolute tops but mostly looking for the $500 to $650 range.

Your coments and input are much appreciated.

CD
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Old 08-18-2006, 09:31 PM   #2
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Cal, you are opening one heck of a can of worms.
Before I run and duck for cover, let me step in for a minute.
It sounds almost as if you are sold on Glocks and looking for some confirmation. I can't give it to you.
The Glock 30 is very serviceable and should last you a very long time. If it fits you well, then good for you.
I favor the 1911 format and specifically, those from Kimber. Others will have other preferences.
My reasons are simple. I find the 1911 very comfortable and easy to control, easy to shoot, and it works well for me.
I like Kimber because of their consistant quality. Some will argue that. The only time I needed their service, it was fast, helpful, and the did the work fine.
Depending on where you live, you can buy the Kimber for under $850. You can spend less and you can spend more, but I think you get a very good value for the little more you will invest. It's better to wait and get what you want than it is too just buy to have.
Shooting is only half the sport.
You have lots of choices and the looking and learning is the other half.
Have some fun.
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Old 08-19-2006, 12:55 AM   #3
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I'd go with a Premium 1911 pattern. In fact, I did just this when I bought a Nighthawk Talon. I put 350 rounds through it one afternoon shooting steel and I had two feed failures that were most likely related to a flaky magazine or the generic Winchester ammo I was shooting. The next marketing point I have is a Springfield Champion stainless. I put over 800 rounds through that gun over a three day class without cleaning it and it went bang every time it should have.

The indoor range where I started shooting seriously had two Glocks for rent. I rented them about half a dozen times over a two year period and put slightly more than six hundred rounds through them. They functioned well but I could not force myself to like the trigger which was my primary reason for not buying one, and later my secondary reason was the admonition not to shoot reloaded ammo through them. Since I reload it's a bit offensive for a manufacture issue this instruction without explaining why. I think the third reason I declined to buy a Glock back in those days was the snob appeal. It seemd like the vast majority of the guys buying them were proto-mall-ninjas, yuppie wannabees who couldn't afford a BMW. They were openly contemptuous of all things not Glock even though they could only hit the ten ring about once each magazine.
 
Old 08-19-2006, 02:43 AM   #4
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CD,

One of the hardest things about your question is that the answer would be very subjective. Being a dealer, I see and handle alot of different weapons. Most of the guns in the price range you are discussing are going to be of good to decent quality. Any manufacturer can and does make an occasional lemon and most of the major manufacturers normally make those problems right with the customer.

My best advice is to go out and handle/feel as many different guns as you can. If there is no shops/ranges near you that rent guns, try to watch other shooters when you are at a range and if approached/asked properly alot of shooters will let you try out what they are shooting. I have had customers who came in sold in their mind that they wanted a specific gun they had read about or held, but once they have fired a round through that gun, they changed their mind. (one guy wanted a Glock 27 for carry purposes but after shooting it, decided to get a Glock 23 because of the size of his hands)

Other things to consider is the purpose for the gun you are wanting recommendation on. Then would come capacity (double/single stack mag) and size/barrel length. Are you wanting a full sized (5") or one of the various other shorter barrel lengths (down to 3")????
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Old 08-19-2006, 04:59 AM   #5
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I'm a 1911 guy myself, and am particularly fond of the lightweight Commander variant.

But I gather that you're not limiting yourself to a 1911. Of all the "new breed" .45 automatics I've seen, shot, or handled, I haven't found anything else I liked even half as much as the Ruger 345. Good feel, fairly efficient size package, and they seem to function reliably and accurately. The price is very reasonable, too. What's not to like?

My second choice--and it's a distant runner-up--would be the SIG 220. I really want to like the Smith 4506 but it's just too big for my hand. But if you have big hands, that might work well for you, too.
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Old 08-19-2006, 06:41 AM   #6
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If you are commited to a polymer frame you should look at the XD long and hard.

Now... for the record... there ain't no such thing as BEST. There are only opinions which are generally worth what you pay for them.
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Old 08-19-2006, 08:35 AM   #7
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Best for you may not be best for anybody else. I think my USP .45 is the best but I have huge hands most of my shotin buddies think it is to big. I am not a huge 1911 fan for the same reason I think they are to small of a grip. The easy answer is pick the one that fits you best.

Travis
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Old 08-19-2006, 04:44 PM   #8
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The issue with the G20/21 series is the size of the frame - too big for me. The XD is a 13 round .45 ACP and fits me well. If the G30 works for you, this may not be an issue, but you should at least handle the XD. HTH!
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Old 08-19-2006, 09:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikegunner
My best advice is to go out and handle/feel as many different guns as you can.
I agree very much. However, you must admit that there are ALOT of guns out there even if you are narrowed down to a certain field.

Charlie, I agree... aint no such thing as best. However opinions ARE golden. Whether they will work for me is always of question but if they help to narrow the field that help is priceless.

David, I'm not married to Glock. I own one and like the way it shoots. Because of that I am going to purchase the longer barrel 21 at some point in the near future. No cult status just a longer version of the gun I already own. I like .45's 1911 and other. It is a round that when fired just feels right in my hand. So knowing that, I would like to focus in on more of them.

Mikegunner, this gun would be stricktly for target shooting. 5" is probably what I am looking at but I am not limiting myself if someone has something that just blows their mind.

Thanks for all the imput!

CD
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Old 08-19-2006, 09:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travismaine
Best for you may not be best for anybody else. I think my USP .45 is the best but I have huge hands most of my shotin buddies think it is to big.

Travis
Same here. I am a big guy and can handle a larger handle. What is USP?
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Old 08-20-2006, 06:58 AM   #11
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I don't know how you define "target" shooting but with that in mind my suggestion might shift to a 1911. The new ones are generally pretty accurate as they come and if accuracy becomes more important easier to get to shoot very well.

Right now the best buy really is the Taurus but one of the strong points of the 1911 is that they all "feel" pretty much the same. You can easily find out if you like that and then narrow down your choices.
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Old 08-20-2006, 09:01 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cal-Duck
Travis
Same here. I am a big guy and can handle a larger handle. What is USP?[/quote]

Universale Selbstlade Pistole, or Universal Self-loading pistol, ala H&K.
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Old 08-20-2006, 10:30 AM   #13
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I would suggest since you have around a $850 budget that you spend in the 5-600 dollar range on a 5" 1911 and take the rest of your money and buy a case or more of ammunition.

You can spend more to get a gun that may be a tad more "accurate" but if you follow my advice you will then learn to shoot/handle your weapon and then any accuracy problems that remain are of the "hardware" variety (the gun) rahter than "software" (the shooter--eg technique, etc....).

One of the funniest stories that goes along this lines comes to my mind. I ordered in a S&W Shorty-Forty (S&W Performance Center/custom gun) for a customer. A couple of months later, he brought it back and wanted me to send it back to S&W for him because "he couldn't hit anything with it".

I asked him if he minded if I shot it before sending it back to see if it truely was a hardware issue. After getting his approval, I loaded 10 rounds into the magazine, grabbed a target and shot the gun at about 15 yards. All 10 holes were touching each other -- so I went back into the office --- and asked the customer to come out and show me how he holds/shoots this gun.

After removing the magazine and checking the gun -- I gave it to him and asked him to show me --- he stood there stiff as a board, stuck his right hand out straight and used his left hand to hold his wrist --

I asked him who taught him to shoot --- his response -- "My father was a gunnery sargeant in WWII and this is how he taught me"

I promptly showed him proper "modern" techniques with both hands on the gun, and his knees slightly bent, and leaning a tad forward --- I knew he was a "Scratch golfer" so I used the analogy of how in golf it is all practice and proper technique.

He came back 2 weeks later beaming with pride to show me some targets he had shot. He laughed that it had taken years and alot of instruction to become proficient at golf, yet it had only taken him weeks to learn to shoot his weapon better.
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Old 08-20-2006, 05:30 PM   #14
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My 2 cents look into the SIG p-220 yes its heavy, but its the most straight shooting pistol I own, and its a fine sub for a 1911.
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Old 08-20-2006, 07:58 PM   #15
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I just bought an XD 45acp ( 4" black) last week and so far I am really impressed. I like my 1911s and SIGs but that XD really has a
lot of features and (for me) the correct grip angle.

I had a G21 several years ago and could never handle the gun correctly due to the size and I hated the grip angle. Keep in mind
that I'm not an anti-Glocker. I still own a G26. I just think they
really got it right with the XD.
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Old 08-21-2006, 06:20 AM   #16
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Mikegunner has some sage observations.

You need to test drive because only you have to be satisfied.

I am in a shooting course with a foreign SF Colonel. He complains that his pistol is inaccurate. The instructor takes the pistol and without wearing his prescription lens, but clear eye protection, shoots at an envious level of accuracy.

Go to some guy like Mikegunner. Pick up a number of .45s until you have one that feels "right" in your hand. When you find a couple that are ok, try models that are double action on the first pull and models that are single action. If you get your choice down to between a model that has an external safety, figure out whether you really like one that requires you to upsweep your thumb to get to the firing mode or one that has a downward sweep.

The foregoing takes time and is potentially embarrassing because it shows that your ignorant. You shouldn't care - it's your life.
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Old 08-21-2006, 07:44 AM   #17
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BD--

My sage observations have come from learning alot of lessons the hard way. I could tell you story after story after story of mistakes I have made concerning firearms.

Luckily I have learned alot from the mistakes I have made and hopefully will be able to keep someone else from having to learn for themselves!

How a gun feels in ones hand and how it feels when actually shooting can be a BIG difference! Also, choice of ammo is important. And then it all boils down to the subjective feel of the person who has to shoot the firearm.
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Old 08-21-2006, 06:42 PM   #18
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I think pretty highly about my new Wilson Combat CQB. Mine has the OD green frame, and black slide.
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Old 08-21-2006, 08:40 PM   #19
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Mannlicher ---

Wilson makes a quality firearm, but that gun would probably be way out of the budget that the original poster laid down before us when asking for recommendations.

On my shelves I have 1911's that go in price ranged from under $400.00 to over $3,500.00. Surprisingly enough some of the lower priced guns perform darn near as well as the higher end guns, they just may not look as good nor have all the bells and whistles as some of the others.

To use the golf analogy again, Tiger Woods could take a set of Wal Mart golf clubs and beat most golfers even a guy using custom made/fitted clubs.

One of my many "gun mistakes" is actually a tack driver and it did not cost me as much as your Wilson. When I was a neophyte, and did not know any better I took a Norinco 1911-A1 and had a Gunsmith outside of Pittsburgh customize it for me. At the time I was a member of the Prodigy Shooting Sports BB (*P SSBB to us "alums"). After getting it back, I sent it to Dean Speir for him to T&E it and write a story. He took one look at it and declared it "damn near a ROONEY" and one of the ugliest guns he had ever had the pleasure to hold. He even nicknamed the Gunsmith "Bruno the Butcher" whenever he would refer to him on the boards and in the story he wrote.

BUT -- during the T&E, the gun shot 1 hole groups at 25 yards with S&B 200gr bullets. (Yes I have a couple of cases stuck away just for THAT gun!)

Moral of the story is to not always judge a book by it's cover or a gun by it's cost. The hardware end is but one small part of the equation.
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Old 08-21-2006, 08:41 PM   #20
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Edited out a double tap --- my computer at home is on it's last legs and hangs up frequently!
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