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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I purchased the WWII Reproduction Colt 1911A1 at the Ft. Worth Gun Show yesterday. Only one dealer had them and he had three in stock that I was able to choose from. I think that I may be the first person in DFW to own one.

Let me first state that I am a WWII buff. I have been since I was a kid. The Colt 1911A1 was made for someone like me -- a person who wants a piece of history. My other favorite piece of history I own is a Colt SAA.

Okay, I fell for the packaging! What's wrong with a little nostalgia in this day of plastic? Sure, it's not a "real" GI issue 1911A1. But, how many of the "real" GI issue 1911A1s out there are truly authentic? From what I have seen and read, most have newer replacement parts anyway.

As mentioned I had the opportunity to examine all three of the gun dealer's 1911A1s. For two of them I was the first person to unpackage them after they left Colt. The finish was not perfect on any of them, but they were good looking. All three came with one magazine, unlike the Colt website says. The magazines looked to be current Colt. None had tooling marks, but they did have a few very light scratches. This would normally keep me away from a new gun, but this added to the charm of these guns. During the war, Colt, Remington, etc. did not put precious manufacturing resources into the finishing of the guns. The focus was on getting them to the GIs. I have read several comments about the reproduction Colt havin several small differences with the original 1911A1. That may be true but it's the nearest thing to the orignal out there.

Here is what appealed to me. The standard GI issue 1911A1 was a great gun. It was developed to be a short range self defense weapon. Over time it has really morphed. It was refreshing to see a 1911A1 sans large beavertails, skeletonized aluminum triggers, bobbed hammers, serrated front straps, flat mainspring housing, low profile sights, front slide serrations, beveled magazine well, stainless, nickel, teflon, etc. And on top of that it is made by one of the WWII 1911A1 manufacturers, Colt.

I have owned other Colt 1911 styles including the Colt Cup and Ace. I own a Kimber Stainless Classic. It is a very well made gun -- much better than my Colt 1911A1. I will never know how the 1911A1 shoots compared to my Kimber or other 1911s because I do not intend to shoot it.

Many people were involved in the development of the 1911A1. It was battle tested by hundreds of thousands of soldiers in WWII, Korea and Viet Nam. It was a proven weapon. Over the years many good manufacturers and custom gunsmiths have risen up to produce or enhance the 1911A1. They include Colt, Kimber, Sprinfield, Wilson, and many others. These companies and individuals turn out really great guns. But are they really turning out a better version if you look at what the gun was designed for? It needed to work in hostile environments. My Kimber would probably fail to function in a hostile military environment. The parts needed to be exchangeable with others. My Kimber is hand fitted. Its looseness was a virtue. Soldiers were shooting other soldiers at close ranges. They were not shooting at paper targets or playing out scenarios at a training shool. It was shoot and kill before the other guy shoot. I kind of wonder if we've lost sight of what the 1911A1 was meant to be. IMHO, I think Colt has hit the nail on the head with this model. Good job Colt!

My serial number is WK01XXX. Did the numbers start with WK00001 or did they start with WK01001? I'm just curious if mine is in the first 1,000 or the second 1,000.
 

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Ken, I agree with you 100% about USGI guns. That's why I prefer them over any civilian gun. Even my worn-out Remington Rand functions 100% of the time, with absolutely no FTF or FTE problems. No sights falling off, no worries about lubing it improperly or letting it get too dirty. It'll always go bang, and it'll always put a hole in the target. I'm sure all my GI Colts would be just as reliable, but I don't shoot them because they have too much value.

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D. Kamm
USGI M1911/M1911A1 Pistols Website
http://www.geocities.com/M1911_M1911A1
 

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"And on top of that it is made by one of the WWII 1911A1 manufacturers, Colt."

Well.......it is made by a company with the same name, but not by the same Colt that made 'em during WWII. Just like S&W and Springfield Armory aren't the same entities any longer. They're just names. But I know what you mean. Good luck with your 1911A1!


Horny Toad




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I agree. When the "old" Colt sold the Onion Dome and the old plant they sold off their soul with it. They're just a new company with the old name legally transferred.

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D. Kamm
USGI M1911/M1911A1 Pistols Website
http://www.geocities.com/M1911_M1911A1
 

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Just to be clear - I'm not in any way saying because Colt isn't the same Colt of yesteryear that they somehow make an inferior product, I'm just pointing out that the "mystique factor" that sometimes grips us really is just an illusion. I just bought my first 1911 a month ago - a brand-new Gold Cup Trophy. It's beautiful. Last week I picked up a Springfield Mil-Spec. Love it. I'll love it more when I swap out the mainspring housing to get rid of that ridiculous internal lock. Anyhoo, my point is when we're talking about the Colt and Springfield Armory of 2001, and the Colt and Springfield Armory of say, 1943, we're comparing apples and oranges.


Horny Toad




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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I basically agree with all comments made (pro & con), but let me add something. In spite of its variances from a genuine WWII 1911A1 and in spite of changes in ownership of Colt, it is the nearest thing one can find to a newly manufactured, authentic Colt 1911A1. The Springfield and Auto-Ordinance models are closer to current production guns. Plus they're not Colt, Remington, Singer, etc.

If I was to venture further, why couldn't one consider it an authentic new 1911A1? It is the closest thing to the original 1911A1 currently being made. My Kimber Stainless only faintly resembles a GI 45. My Ace had adjustable sights and a bright polish -- it wasn't GI-ish. It is probably realistic to assume that Colt would have made a few manufacturing changes since 1943. All of the other Colt versions have changed over time. Why wouldn't this one too? It's the most authentic 1911A1 currently made.

This gun clearly isn't for everyone. It's probably not the best value for the money. It's probably not a lot of things, but it is neat. I think Colt should be applauded for this reproduction. Now if they would bring back the Ace, Diamondback....

Not all of us can locate and afford a WWII vintage pistol. I would have one over the reproduction in a heartbeat if I could. But not being a Colt 1911A1 GI Historian, how would I ever know that every part was original issue? I would imagine that those types of completely original guns rarely show up at gun shows or gun stores. So for me this is the next best thing. Colt will quickly sell all 4,000 of these. If you want one you better act quickly. And if you don't like it, that's ok too.

P.S. Havoc, I liked your review of the gun.
 

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Thanks Ken - it is a cool 1911A1. It's very well built (except my guide rod
) and it's a great shooter. If I had a "real" GI issue in anywhere near this "new" condition, I sure wouldn't be shooting it.

P.S. the web of my hand Is beginning the healing process... until this weekend


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Rust never sleeps
 
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