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Old 10-07-2012, 11:50 PM
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Default S&W Model 1911 Performance Issues

I am considering adding a Smith and Wesson Model 1911 to my collection of shooters but I have not been able to decide on either the SW1911 (108285) or SW1911TA E-Series (108409). Performance is the most important consideration for me. After reviewing several forum posts, I've seen comments on ammo (FMJ is better than JHP, 230 grain is better than 185 grain for optimum performance, Winchester white box and American Eagle have the best ammo), and operation (lubed rails and slide are a must, the feed ramp design can cause problems, FTF and FTRTB may occur, 7 rd vs 8 rd mags are better) etcComments and recommendations from other forum members who actually own at least one would be invaluable, plus I'd like to finalize my Christmas Want List as soon as possible.
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Old 10-08-2012, 12:45 AM
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I have a SW1911 108282, which is the 285 with a stainless finish rather than Melonite. It is a fine pistol, and I've had no problems with it at all. It takes my handloads, ball and Hornady XTP, without hiccups, as well as factory ammunition of all sorts. It came with Novack style low profile sights, which I replaced with Novack tritium night sights, 3-dot style.

The E version has a wider extractor, and comes with tritium night sights. I believe the Schwarz firing pin block has been eliminated in this model. The Commander version of the E is available with a bobtailed grip - a plus for concealment. Is it worth the extra $300? Only you can say.
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Old 10-08-2012, 06:41 PM
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I have the 5" stainless version, post billboard. It's a great gun, no issues right out of the box. It even digests semi-wadcutters, perhaps the most problematic ammo in a semi-auto. I put a slight polish on the feedramp using crocus cloth without cutting or grinding.

Ammo: I use mostly hand loaded 200 grain bullets for lessoned recoil. I use 230 grain ammo for defensive purposes. Both shoot to the same point of impact at typical handgun distances.
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Old 10-08-2012, 07:19 PM
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What is your definition of performance? What some folks need or want will be vastly different than others...ie an NRA Bullseye Postol shooter will have a marked difference as to what performance means....an IDPA/USPSA shooter will have an entirely different meaning as well.

I own 7 different 1911's and they all have different levels of performance for me. I don't use my Bullseye gun as Concealed Carry gun nor is my CC gun used in a Bullseye match..both however are very high performing guns and have never left me in a lurch.

How are you intending to use a 1911? My SW 1911 Sc is my second most accurate gun I own. My Springfield Armory National Match gun is hands down the MOST accurate 1911 in the herd.

Be not afraid of a SW 1911....

Randy
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Old 10-08-2012, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BSeabrooke View Post
...I've seen comments on ammo (FMJ is better than JHP, 230 grain is better than 185 grain for optimum performance, Winchester white box and American Eagle have the best ammo), and operation (lubed rails and slide are a must, the feed ramp design can cause problems...
All true statements. I do not own a S&W 1911, but a Springfield.

I do have better overall performance with FMJ.

With Winchester white box I actually had horrible feeding issues. Therefore I rather spend a bit more money on Black Hills and Magtech.

Feeding ramp I always would polish, no matter what.

Hope that helps a bit...
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Old 10-08-2012, 07:58 PM
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Default S&W Model 1911 Performance Issues

My thanks to all of the forum members who have provided me with some very important information. Performance can be defined in several ways - for me it's reliability, target accuracy, operational performance as described by the manufacturer, defect free operation, etc. I carried a Colt .45 in Vietnam and I know what a great firearm it is. I already have two Colts and one Springfield 1911 MilSpec The latter always provides exceptional performance, every day of the week!The comments that I have seen in other posts include, replacement by S&W customer service due to extensive mechanical problems, extractor problems, poorly designed and tooled ramps, ejector port design and function problems, extractor pin drifting down onto the slide causing jamming during firing, poor machining at the factory etcWith the exception of a Glock, S&W M&P, a Springfield XDM, and of course the Colts, all of my firearms are revolvers. However, I may have overlooked a real top notch performer in the S&W Model 1911, especially the E Series model. Those who have responded to my posts are certainly supporting that conclusion.
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Old 10-17-2012, 09:27 AM
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Hello everyone.
New member here from Canada, I have a new S&W 1911 45auto pistol.
Love the gun, but it kicks like a mule. My question is, does anyone know if the STI recoil master will work with this pistol without any mods. Contacted STI and they told that it will, however they also told me that on some 1911s the bottom portion of the barrel need some machining to make it fit. They did not know if the S&W was one of them. Did anyone ever try to do this conversion to their S&W 1911?
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Old 10-17-2012, 09:35 AM
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Ive been looking into the E series. From what info i've been able to find it seems that the wider extractor on the E series is a better performer and more reliable

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Old 10-17-2012, 04:53 PM
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I had been on the fence for a while. I took the plunge last month a got a E-Series SW1911CT. So far so good. 2 range trips 400 rds and no an issue but the CT grips not working properly. They are going back tomorrow
Gun was extremely accurate and ran like a champ. IMO you can't go wrong.
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