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I'm a newborn to the 1911 world, so I need some guidance. I apologise if any of these questions are dumb.

Does an external extractor by definition make a difference in quality or reliability?

How can I tell if the sights are dovetailed or not?

Do commander sized 1911's decrease reliability, or anything else for that matter?

Which brand/model has easier then usual switchable sights?

are detachable rails a bad idea, so much that I should just spring for a railed pistol?

do stock 1911's always have to be modified?

can 1911's with full recoil rods have them just removed and work fine, or do they have to be replaced with a short one?

which models come with the sharp edges removed?

can the abi safety be easily and safely removed by myself?

which models can have the mag release switched to the other side?

Is an over travel stop a nesisty for defensive shooting?

which make/models come with loose or non-tactile safeties and should be avoided for that reason?

Is a beveled mag well offer a great advantage for defensive reloading?

is is the 5 inch barrel the best balanced?

aside from hammer bite, are traditional hammers inferior?

Is a metal mainspring housing essential?
 

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I almost never tell someone to use the search function instead of asking their questions. I think that continual discussion, even of topics that regularly come up, is what make the forums good. However, in this case, I'd say if you did some searches, you'd be able to narrow down your questions quite a bit and the responses you get will be more and of better quality.

I will adress a few questions:

External extractors: some on either side of the transaction (consumers and manufacturers) feel they are better and some feel they are worse.

Do all stock 1911s need to be modified? Yes. Otherwise the internat commandos will think you're just a wanna-be poser.

Good luck and have fun.
 

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No
by looking for a dovetail
No
None
Yes
Depends on the gun/user
Must be replaced
Custom models
Yes
Custom models
No
Cheap ones
Not great
Depends on the user
No
No
 

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I would start going to gunstores and looking at various pistols and asking questions of the salesmen, knowing that the answers you get may not be correct. At least you would understand what a dovetail sight is. Other questions like extractors are debatable.

I will answer that question; my opinion. The vast majority of semiauto pistols have external extractors. The vast majority of 1911 semiautos have internal extractors of the type in the Colt 1911. Kimber had problems when they put an external extractor on their 1911s and stopped using it. S&W on the other hand seems to make an excellent 1911 with an external extractor. Personally I prefer the internal extractor in a 1911 for a selfish reason. I have many extra ones in my parts box and a couple tools to tension them so if an internal extractor broke I could most likely fix it myself. If the external extractor broke on my S&W 1911 then it would be a trip back to S&W most likely.
 

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]I'm a newborn to the 1911 world, so I need some guidance. I apologise if any of these questions are dumb.

Does an external extractor by definition make a difference in quality or reliability? IVE GOT BOTH AND NO

How can I tell if the sights are dovetailed or not? JUST LOOK

Do commander sized 1911's decrease reliability, or anything else for that matter? AT GREATER DISTANCES YES, BUT COMBAT EFFECTIVENESS, NO

Which brand/model has easier then usual switchable sights? DOVETAILED

are detachable rails a bad idea, so much that I should just spring for a railed pistol? KINDA HARD TO CCW A PISTOL WITH LIGHT OR LASER ON RAIL. GREAT FOR HOME DEFENSE

do stock 1911's always have to be modified? I HAVE TONS OF SPINGFIELD MIL SPECS AND ESSEX GI MODELS WITH NO MODS THAT WORK GREAT WITH BALL AND PMC 230GR JHP

can 1911's with full recoil rods have them just removed and work fine, or do they have to be replaced with a short one? I ALWAYS REPLACE FULL LENGTH RODS WITH GI STYLE.

which models come with the sharp edges removed? GENERALLY THOSE OVER 1500 BUCKS, AND SIG 1911'S.

can the abi safety be easily and safely removed by myself? ONLY IF YOU ARE SURE IN WHAT YOUR DOING

which models can have the mag release switched to the other side?

Is an over travel stop a nesisty for defensive shooting? NO

which make/models come with loose or non-tactile safeties and should be avoided for that reason? S&W MAKES THEIR 1911 WITH SOFTER THUMB SAFETYS THAN I PREFER, I PREFER THE SAFETY'S ALA SPRINGFIELD, TIGHT ENOUGH TO KNOW YOU'VE ENGAGED OR DISENGAGED.

Is a beveled mag well offer a great advantage for defensive reloading? YES

is is the 5 inch barrel the best balanced? YOU'D HAVE TO SEE WHAT WORKS FOR YOU

aside from hammer bite, are traditional hammers inferior? NO AND WITH THE NEWER STYLE GRIP SAFETY TANGS, HAMMER BITE ISN'T MUCH AN ISSUE UNLESS YOU GO TO A PURE GI STYLE WITH THE ORIGINAL STYLE TANG

Is a metal mainspring housing essential?[/QUOTE] NO, BUT ADDS WEIGHT
 

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No

There's a grove cut at an angle running across the top under e sight if there is

In my experience yes

Anything wirh a dovetail is changed the same, brand doesn't matter

Get the rail. I've got a detachable and it works but comes lose with a lot of shooting. If your using it as a night stand gun though you'll be fine

No

Have to be replaced as do the caps

Look for dehorned or carry.

No

None that I've ever seen or heard of. Would have to be a different frame

No

None I've seen

Yes that's what it's for

I think so

No its just not gonna fit as is with a beavertail

No
 

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Here goes - my opinions:

Does an external extractor by definition make a difference in quality or reliability?

External extractors are potentially more reliable out of the box because they have less adjustment to be made to function correctly. If done correctly, neither is better than the other.


How can I tell if the sights are dovetailed or not?

They are larger at the bottom than at the top and slide in sideways.


Do commander sized 1911's decrease reliability, or anything else for that matter?

No. They are inherently less accurate since their sight radius (distance between sights) is smaller than a full size 1911.


Which brand/model has easier then usual switchable sights?

There is not much difference between the various brands, but there are different angles and depth of dovetails which make some brands incompatible with others.


are detachable rails a bad idea, so much that I should just spring for a railed pistol?

I have no experience with detachable rails for an opinion.


do stock 1911's always have to be modified?

No, but most are because they have so many parts available. For example, grips can be very personalized and are easy to replace. An extended mag release is quite easy to install. Modifications to the firing mechanism, safeties, barrel etc are not trivial and should be left to competent gunsmiths.


can 1911's with full recoil rods have them just removed and work fine, or do they have to be replaced with a short one?

They work fine. They will make field stripping of the gun different. GI guide rods are slightly more convenient for take down, but the difference is pretty trivial once you get used to both. I think two-piece full length guide rods are a bad idea, but one-piece ones are good.


which models come with the sharp edges removed?

Ones that have been "dehorned".


can the ambi safety be easily and safely removed by myself?

No, in order to do that, you must replace the entire thumb safety, and fitting them is best done by a gunsmith. New safeties will not work out of the box.


which models can have the mag release switched to the other side?

None that I am aware of.


Is an over travel stop a nesisty for defensive shooting?

No, there are other ways to accomplish its function.


which make/models come with loose or non-tactile safeties and should be avoided for that reason?

This will vary from gun-to-gun and you should feel the safety engagement before you buy it, if it is of concern to you. All 1911 thumb safeties have some tactility - some have a more positive engagement and disengagement than others.


Is a beveled mag well offer a great advantage for defensive reloading?

Yes. Most defensive situations do not require reloading, but if you anticipate a situation in which you must reload, they help.


is is the 5 inch barrel the best balanced?

There is more to balance than barrel length, but all things being equal, yes, they are more balanced.


aside from hammer bite, are traditional hammers inferior?

No, they all accomplish their function


Is a metal mainspring housing essential?

No, but they will probably last longer than one made from plastic. Both will outlive you.
 
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