1911Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Afternoon, shooters!

Right now I'm in the planning stages for a next two, and last 1911 builds. Of the final two guns, one will be my version of a 'grail gun', a fighting pistol with every specific part and cut I've ever required. The other, I'd honestly like to be a Wilson Combat ( full disclosure, I have been a 2013 CQB owner ).

I am curious though as to how much flexibility with small parts we have, or if others that have had recent WC builds with some changes. I'm basically looking for a gun fit for me with the Wilson pedigree and quality of assembly and build - here's the breakdown :

1. Railed CQB as a base ( FCS included, ball cut preferably, smooth rear of slide)
2. Either a very high contoured or .245/.250 grip safety radius ( EGW GS for instance )
3. Flat top slide and serrations. I believe Wilson does this in 30 LPI?
4. 20 LPI front strap
5. The bulletproof mag well with that massive opening, 20 LPI at the rear
6. 10-8 slide stop
7. Square FPS from Wilson or Harrison
8. Barrel, bushing and slide installed with Supergrade fitting procedures ( gun has to hold 1-1.7" max @ 25 yards, 3.3" [email protected] 50 yards with ASYM Precision match ball. The tighter the groups, the better. )
9. Rear sight of my choosing. More than likely a 10-8
10. Medium length trigger with a fixed overtravel stop
11. Machine chamfered slide bottom - my CQB wasn't a heavy chamfer, it was noticable but not heavy. It was perfect
12. Flat head grip screws and VZ Recons/thumb scoop
13. Wilson countersunk slide stop/hole
14. BP ambi wide lever contoured down a skosh. Think Ed Brown tactical levers-ish

Can Wilson build such a gun? Has anyone here had options similar to this that have been added/deleted? Each option exists for a reason, and requirements born from shooting many thousands of rounds. I don't necessarily need full blown SG, as I don't care about every last tool mark being stoned out, or fancy checkering/engraving - I just need a pistol built to my hand, eyes, ability and techniques that I can depend upon with my life.

Thoughts? Experiences? Photographs, and stories? What thoughts do you all have? Any guidance you have WCR? I'm all ears.

Thanks for your time folks, and have a relaxed and easy Sunday.

S/F
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Also, I thought I'd throw in the justifications for each modification. Many shooters on some forums question the need for some items in my guns - but on many occasions once explained, they've picked up something they decide is worth it, or not worth it to them. The more we share information as a community, the more we explain the why and not just the what, the further we will progress as students of the art.

I need a rail gun because I am from past experiences a believer in weapon mounted lights. This is to not say I don't utilize handheld lights as well, but it is MUCH easier to fight with both hands solidly on the gun - and illumination equals positive identification. In my mind, this simply enables me to make better legal, moral and ethical decisions. I don't subscribe to keeping a weapon in it's 100 year old form - combat is an evolving animal, and I don't wish to deal with hammer bite, horrible sights, an 8 pound trigger or tiny thumb safeties. My CQB was a non rail gun, and I realized very quickly that securing a Dawson rail to a thin dust cover on a Wilson was not ideal. That gun made way for my Guncrafter American, currently at Guncrafter for some modifications.

I do use FCS for brass checks as it enables me to achieve leverage that pinching the rear of the slide and pulling does not. Also it enables me to keep a full firing grip - additionally it gives me a tactile reference to let me know my hands are not too far forward, too close to the business end. The rear of the side smooth is so if I need to smack the slide into battery, I've got less chance of cutting my hand, which I have done. Also it represents less detail, angles and such that the human eye likes to focus on - the eye loves symmetry, and corners. Hence my preference for U notch rear sights - less corners at the rear means its easier to direct focus forward to the front sight and the threat.

I do prefer high cut grip safeties. When I'm reaching for a thumb safety and fighting for the highest tang grip on the gun I can, .220 radius safeties or equivalent kill the web of my hand. I want the web as close to the line of bore as possible, and to a spot which enables me to rest my thumb on the safety without struggle. I have shot with Ed Brown units but quality these days in them is a bit less. I've shot the CMC units but the memory pad is tiny and hard for me to depress. I strongly prefer the EGW unit as its able to be fit tight, is bar stock, great quality and very meaty, which allows for copious amounts of blending. Most importantly, its high cut enough.

Flat top slide, I have shot from the Barhardt high ready. And on a dirty gun which I've dumped lube into after the first 400 round session, often the top of the slide gets shiny with lots of lube and **** all over from oily hands. I don't want anything shiny by my sights.

20 LPI because it is less prone to damage from impacts, the finish holds on better in my experience, 20 LPI doesn't get clogged with dirt as easily and I do often shoot with flight or Mechanix gloves. I need grip. Chew my carry shirt or body armor to pieces, I don't care. I need a solid grip that ain't going to let go when I am rushing to a draw.

The magazine well, enough said there. I chose to carry a full size 1911 with a light - what's another small add-on? Its wide enough and strong enough if I drop it, its durable enough to not bend and trap a mag in. And the time saved on reloads for me is huge. Single stack mags are feisty bastards at speed.

The 10-8 slide stop. This is a badass slide stop, gents. I've used them lots, they are dimensionally correct, hard and heat treated right. I vastly prefer this one over all others due to the huge shelf available to hit on a reload. The Wilson is a phenomenal part, just a bit small for me.

Square FPS because I like the idea of the slide unlocking being slowed just a tad. I do feel a difference in muzzle rise/recoil - its a different sensation, just less violent, and it only serves to prolong the life of the VIS, frame and slide. Plus you can use a slightly lighter recoil spring, although I have a preference for an 18.5# Wolff for use in mud and sand.

Accuracy - simply put, I've shot a Supergrade. I've shot awesome bullseye guns. I don't buy the argument that one shouldn't burn money on an inaccurate gun ( recognizing the difference between accuracy and precision. Accuracy in my context is simply a blanket term ) if the skills aren't there. I do have the ability to shoot a 10 and X ring out of an NRA B-8 bullseye, and work with gents who regularly do better - the point is that I want to know EVERY flaw in my fundamentals, and not exasperate them with an incapable weapon. I gravitate towards Wilson, Guncrafter, ICG, ACW and a few others because I know they can accomplish this with flawless reliability.

Medium trigger so my trigger squeeze finishes flat and without off axis torque. I love the look of a long Greider/Videcki 3 hole trigger, but I can't tell you how many people I train that put up great groups, but they think that a low left group is automatically the gun or sights. All too often its a trigger/gun with too long a length of pull, or a trigger ( in the case of the M-9 ) that has a release of pressure that isn't straight back. The point of break and overtravel often help a good group to migrate. A fixed overtravel stop because I've seen too many overtravel screws walk and cause issues. Loc tite is a common fix - I prefer something more permanent.

I prefer a machine chamfered slide bottom because of my grip - Reaching up to the thumb safety, my hand is literally being pulled up into a high tang grip. My knuckle has too many experiences of getting chewed up by Glock slides. The chamfer simply gives me that added margin of space, especially when wearing gloves. As well, it doesn't force me to compromise my grip.

VZ Recons because they are grippy as hell, and a thumb scoop because it enables me to hit the mag release MUCH easier. I think it looks ugly, but looks be damned - I want functionality. Flat head grip screws because in the field if grip screws loosen, I don't want to have to hunt down an allen key, torx bit, or any other crazy combination. Everyone has a Leatherman with a flat head, or a Swiss Army knife, or a .45 ACP case rim... ( Thank you, JMB )

Recessing the slide stop pin for a big reason. When I recognize a double feed or any other kind of stoppage, my finger is straight and in register, alongside the frame. If my finger pushes a slide stop in inadvertently while slingshotting the slide, it could and has locked the gun open hard. This can also peen the slide stop takedown notch, or even the slide stop. For lefties, I consider this a must. The countersinking isn't a must have, but a nice feature for takedown, and lets my finger sink into the groove and hit a central point on the pin.

The Wilson BP ambi - this is the singularly best ambi safety on the market. Its tough, well made, doesn't loosen, and is retained with a Kings captured pin method, meaning you don't have to take the damn pistol grip off to strip the gun fully. I prefer to contour it so my index finger knuckle isn't gouged out like when I shoot my MEUSOC. I do contour the left side as well ( although a nice wide shelf feels great strong hand ) so if I must shoot left hand only, it will accomodate that knuckle.

A mouthful, yes, but there are reasons for everything. I do believe that if one is paying $3K+ for a gun, it had better damn well be built right, every single modification justified for a piece of fighting iron, and suited to the end user.

If you have similar or different experiences, please share! Any thoughts are welcome!

S/F
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
631 Posts
We'll, in a lot less time than it took you to type that post, a quick call to one of the fantastic customer service reps there at Wilson's would have laid all your questions to rest. They are great people and will work with you as long as there are no safety/liability issues or concerns for them with the mixing and matching of small parts to their guns.

I just ordered a Professional with lots of options, some not offered on the build sheet and they were happy to help. In a year and a half I'll let you know how it turned out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,378 Posts
1. Railed CQB as a base ( FCS included, ball cut preferably, smooth rear of slide)
No problem
2. Either a very high contoured or .245/.250 grip safety radius ( EGW GS for instance )
We only use our bulletproof grip safety
3. Flat top slide and serrations. I believe Wilson does this in 30 LPI?
No problem
4. 20 LPI front strap
Not offered at this time
5. The bulletproof mag well with that massive opening, 20 LPI at the rear
Only 30 lpi at this time
6. 10-8 slide stop
Sorry, we only build with our parts
7. Square FPS from Wilson or Harrison
We offer one, no problem
8. Barrel, bushing and slide installed with Supergrade fitting procedures ( gun has to hold 1-1.7" max @ 25 yards, 3.3" [email protected] 50 yards with ASYM Precision match ball. The tighter the groups, the better. )
Sounds like you want a Supergrade
9. Rear sight of my choosing. More than likely a 10-8
Nope, sorry
10. Medium length trigger with a fixed overtravel stop
Nope, sorry
11. Machine chamfered slide bottom - my CQB wasn't a heavy chamfer, it was noticable but not heavy. It was perfect
No problem
12. Flat head grip screws and VZ Recons/thumb scoop
You can get a grip credit and install whatever grips you like-we don't special order grips
13. Wilson countersunk slide stop/hole
no problem
14. BP ambi wide lever contoured down a skosh. Think Ed Brown tactical levers-ish
No problem
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Respectfully, I am pretty concerned about burning up their time - that's shop time and time CS people would have to bear with me, and time away from people's guns already in the system. Where I work its similar - busy the guys, and that's less time they are spending on our guns for my unit. I figured I'd leave it here and WCR or others such as yourself could get to it when time permitted. :)

What options did you request, if you don't mind me asking?

S/F
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
1. Railed CQB as a base ( FCS included, ball cut preferably, smooth rear of slide)
No problem
2. Either a very high contoured or .245/.250 grip safety radius ( EGW GS for instance )
We only use our bulletproof grip safety
3. Flat top slide and serrations. I believe Wilson does this in 30 LPI?
No problem
4. 20 LPI front strap
Not offered at this time
5. The bulletproof mag well with that massive opening, 20 LPI at the rear
Only 30 lpi at this time
6. 10-8 slide stop
Sorry, we only build with our parts
7. Square FPS from Wilson or Harrison
We offer one, no problem
8. Barrel, bushing and slide installed with Supergrade fitting procedures ( gun has to hold 1-1.7" max @ 25 yards, 3.3" [email protected] 50 yards with ASYM Precision match ball. The tighter the groups, the better. )
Sounds like you want a Supergrade
9. Rear sight of my choosing. More than likely a 10-8
Nope, sorry
10. Medium length trigger with a fixed overtravel stop
Nope, sorry
11. Machine chamfered slide bottom - my CQB wasn't a heavy chamfer, it was noticable but not heavy. It was perfect
No problem
12. Flat head grip screws and VZ Recons/thumb scoop
You can get a grip credit and install whatever grips you like-we don't special order grips
13. Wilson countersunk slide stop/hole
no problem
14. BP ambi wide lever contoured down a skosh. Think Ed Brown tactical levers-ish
No problem
Damn, what timing. You know WCR, its okay to take a weekend completely OFF! :rofl:

Can Wilson take your grip safety and contour it higher, or is that a no-go? I suppose I could say I'm not as concerned about the exact radius, just how high cut it is.

Are there any plans to do guns/parts in 20 LPI, or are you all just planning to stick to it due to the tremendous backlog?

What sight cut is used, Novak?

What's the typical diameter of your slide stop pins?

I would say yes to a full Supergrade, but honestly I just don't need something THAT nice. The CQB I had was great. I suppose I'm just requesting horsepower under the hood.

Re : grips. Check, I'd buy the things and ship them in. No biggie there.

S/F
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
631 Posts
How about that? WCR replies within minutes on a Sunday. Now that is customer service! Besides, for $3-6K for something that fits in your hand, you are entitled to a few minutes of their time.

I'll PM you with some details.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
996 Posts
Great info in this post although I would not characterize my fellow
Wilson owners as the "masses." Just kidding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,378 Posts
Damn, what timing. You know WCR, its okay to take a weekend completely OFF! :rofl:
never!

Can Wilson take your grip safety and contour it higher, or is that a no-go? I suppose I could say I'm not as concerned about the exact radius, just how high cut it is.
The contour is as high as we can take it within reason.

Are there any plans to do guns/parts in 20 LPI, or are you all just planning to stick to it due to the tremendous backlog?
No plans for 20 LPI

What sight cut is used, Novak?
rear is Novak, front is Wilson

What's the typical diameter of your slide stop pins?
.200ish

I would say yes to a full Supergrade, but honestly I just don't need something THAT nice. The CQB I had was great. I suppose I'm just requesting horsepower under the hood.

Re : grips. Check, I'd buy the things and ship them in. No biggie there.

S/F
When you are thousands and thousands of guns behind it makes it hard to further individualize with special parts and such. We have learned over the years to stick with our parts, even with something so benign as a pair of grips.
It certainly helps us from a future service perspective if a part breaks or needs to be replaced.
As far as the Supergrade barrel fit, can you shoot a 1" handheld group at 25 yards? A standard CQB is guaranteed to shoot that well out of a rest. Keep that in mind.
Thanks for considering us for your next build.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Makes sense. Respectfully speaking, that's a heck of a backlog though, at what point do you stop accepting orders?

As far as the accuracy standard, yes, although not all the time. We routinely shoot out to 50 yards and further, which drove the accuracy requirement, as well as a background involving bullseye shooting. Over the years I've realized that once you reach a certain level of proficiency, a gun can hold you back. That 3.3" 10 ring on a B8 turned out to be a phenominal standard to meet, especially before you introduce movement, stress and more. I very much value the ability of a gun to print a shot EXACTLY on call, for if it is not, I don't truly know where the fundamental breakdown is or even if there is one. Hence, my need for an eye-watering level of precision.

For instance, I've shot Glocks, M&Ps, SIGs, H&Ks, Berettas... you name it. Every single one of those guns had more compromise than I was willing to deal with. My G19 wasn't very accurate outside of 15 yards and gave me slide bite, as well as a VERY long LOP. My M&P at the time was an early model with accuracy issues with light ammo. SIGs had a stupid low tang and I couldn't deal with the weight of DA triggers. H&Ks were a similar case, although accurate. So I've transitioned completely to 1911s - all of which are, or are currently being accurized. My threshold remains 1.7" at 25 for most guns.

Thanks for your assistance and information, especially on a Sunday. If you ever make it out to Quantico, VA, beer is on me!

S/F
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,378 Posts
We are focused on streamlining production and increasing quality at the same time while improving delivery. Many delivery delays are parts delays and we have improved there as well.

I agree with you completely on accuracy. I have no room in the gun safe for inaccurate handguns and the trigger of the 1911 allows you to take advantage of that mechanical accuracy.

We used to offer an upgrade to Supergrade barrel fit but it is no longer on the upgrade list and not sure we are offering it anymore. Right now we are a solid 2 years behind. Maybe longer depending on the model. When and if you place your order you can inquire then.
Thanks for the offer. Beer is always accepted!

WCR
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Interesting that it was once offered...

Hypothetically how would this affect already built/owned Wilsons returned for an upgrade or two? I'm not sure how that is handled - to the back of the line or is there another process?

S/F
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,378 Posts
Interesting that it was once offered...

Hypothetically how would this affect already built/owned Wilsons returned for an upgrade or two? I'm not sure how that is handled - to the back of the line or is there another process?

S/F

We turn around small jobs pretty quickly-a few months or less. Depends on what you want to get done.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
That is a heck of a wait time, but when it's over you have a pistol backed by exceptional service. I sent in a Wilson for warranty work less than two weeks ago; it's been repaired, new sights installed, tested and fired... And already due back from UPS tomorrow! That's exceptional service guys! If you have a problem they get right on it and communicate with you on the solution. Their pistols often require a large investment of money and time, but they really try to make sure you know they appreciate your business.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,545 Posts
Had a rough weekend here, so I tried to lay low on this one; that said, for a while there, I thought that I was reading a spec list from Mad Dog Mattis himself. lol

Definitely appreciate the aspect of knowing what a man wants/needs in a gun, and we see too little of that here at times as guys struggle with configuration decisions that ultimately have no bearing upon the actual use or employment of the pistol for any of its intended purposes. "No dude, those ball cuts won't help you grip up any higher on the gun." ;)

By the same token, we need to remain cognizant of the fact that Wilson Combat is engaged in the business of building Wilson Combat guns, and trying to force half of Hilton's shopping cart onto/into it runs completely contrary to their larger needs and objectives. Believe me, they already got their hands full just keeping up with the in-house stuff.

We would also do well to remember that most of the best 1911 smiths in the country are probably waiting on a Brown truck right now to deliver parts for various ongoing projects, and most of those parts are going to come with a nice blue Wilson Combat product card in the zip bag. We may develop preferences for 10-8 triggers, Harrison slide stops or EGW bushings along the way, but the corresponding Wilson BP part (in whatever category) hardly represents a compromise, if we're to be honest about this.

Having to have "your gun" built "their way" because of the associated production limitations and build policies can give one cause for brief pause, I suppose, but it really doesn't involve half of the sacrifices that you might be envisioning in the end.

AC
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,438 Posts
We would also do well to remember that most of the best 1911 smiths in the country are probably waiting on a Brown truck right now to deliver parts for various ongoing projects
AC,

I had no idea Ed Brown has his own trucks and did parts deliveries. I learn so much from you. :p
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Whoa their CWO, we ain't channeling the great Mattis himself without copious profanity and beer! :D

And yes, ball cuts I recognize its just a preference.

To be fair, that list didn't really have too many off brands, but the point that they [Wilson] do have immediate objectives requiring minimal variation is noted. Only a 10-8 slide stop, sight and an EGW g/s were mentioned ( to be fair, I didn't know if they had a trigger with a fixed stop, or would red loc-tite a screw in and just file it ). Respectfully, half of a shopping cart is a wee bit of an exaggeration.

Now, do their products represent a compromise? Of quality, absolutely not. I've used their parts as well on several guns - thumb safeties are the biggest probably, as nobody builds an ambi like they do. But at a certain level, yes, small differences do make a difference in performance. I stopped using Wilson slide stops not due to a lack of quality, its just at speed, sometimes with gloves, and in the cold, I performed much better with one with a larger shelf/contact area. This preference is a more common thing nowadays with the proliferation and use of Greider slide stops, being just one example. Consider the manual of arms for a 1911 being run at speed - the slide stop actuation is a critical moment in operation. Locking the slide open is as well, something markedly easier for me with a 10-8.

To me, more important are the meeting the threshold performance requirements and pushing for the objective performance requirements. However, a required standard of accuracy does me no good if I can't see sights optimally, or if I miss a critical step in a reload. Controls do have to be big/small enough for the end user.

That said, no, I didn't quite understand the sacrifices Wilson would have to make to build such a gun in their current state. I don't work there, so I didn't have the context needed to understand their capabilities - now I do.

Once things get caught back up, I'll still be getting another gun through them ( you hear me WCR, you bastard, shut up and take my monies!:D ). I may not survive long enough to have lightsabers on my sternum/shoulders ( damn Army types, making everything confusing... ) like you, Chief, but in time the backlog will lessen and I'll invest in their business once again.

Maybe even a Supergrade...

S/F

Had a rough weekend here, so I tried to lay low on this one; that said, for a while there, I thought that I was reading a spec list from Mad Dog Mattis himself. lol

We may develop preferences for 10-8 triggers, Harrison slide stops or EGW bushings along the way, but the corresponding Wilson BP part (in whatever category) hardly represents a compromise, if we're to be honest about this.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,545 Posts
TLM,

Will keep my Mattis stories to myself for now. ;)

Not sure who is really tracking on this, and who is not, but I'm dealing with some serious health issues right now, and I think that in a couple of recent instances my meds may be leading a few folks to draw some inferences from my input that were/not really intended. Don't ever want to inadvertently give offense where none is surely intended, but I've had a rough week or two over here, admittedly. Hence the somewhat lower profile of late.

In your case specifically, I was not really trying to address anything point-for-point, and as stated, I think it is quite valuable to know/recognize what you feel belongs on a gun to best match it to your own purposes, shooting style(s) and needs. A lot of guys never really get to that stage, and spend their time wandering around in the bushes pondering things that don't much matter in the end (i.e. cosmetics over capabilities). I feel for them, quite honestly, because it is kind of a road to nowhere when you think about it. The challenge, as always, is to try to find some way to infuse a sense of balance into all of this.

Anyway, to get back on topic, I have found (quite accidentally) that, as a southpaw, I really like the design of John Harrison's proprietary slide stop. It was surely not designed to accommodate left-handed operation; it just happens to work particularly well in that role because the manner in which it happens to be shaped. That is not to say that I have ever been held back by a Wilson slide stop, nor would I even be able to take myself seriously if I tried to advance such an argument, but there is an "Nth-degree" better solution for me. You've obviously found some similar things along your own journey, whether at 10-8 or elsewhere. A good thing.

So, will WC build me a SuperGrade with a Harrison slide stop? Nope. They won't ... but then again, that is hardly a show-stopper, either. That's all I was trying to point out earlier. You might not end up getting that 100% blueprint gun that you have in your mind if you ask Wilson's to take on your next project, but to their credit, you are going to get something that is really, really close -- and I think that is really saying something when you consider that they are going to do it entirely in-house with parts and components of their own design and manufacture. I'm not sure who else in the industry would even be able to come close, quite honestly.

That's all I was saying earlier, and in truth, none of it was intended as a challenge to the vision that you had laid out. I was more just marveling to myself that, even when we take such things into account, it is pleasantly-surprising that Wilson's should even still relevant to the discussion.

AC
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,459 Posts
Get the Wilson built as close as possible to YOUR specs, then change out those parts after you get it.......what was mentioned...3 or 4 parts differences?
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top