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Discussion Starter #1
Good evening everyone,

I recently have purchased a S&W 1911TA E-Series. I was wondering if anyone could tell me if is a glossy blued finish or a glossy black finish? I am finding it hard to find what the actual color of it is. This 1911 is awesome with 2 exceptions. First the full length guide rod which is more of a personal preference. But second is the ambidextrous safety. I would like to change it to a right handed extended safety instead and would like to get something close to match the color. Thank you very much for your time and input.
 

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Well, first I'd say that it's not glossy at all. It's more of a flat black than anything else. As much as it pains me to say this, you may have to have the safety 'painted' (as in Cerakote) in order to get a perfect match. Frankly, the weak-side safety is rather unobtrusive. Unless it's really bothering you for some reason, you might consider leaving it alone. As for the guide-rod, well, there's much fluff bandied about, but in the end, they do their job. If that's bothering you too, they are easy enough to replace, I suppose.


Fantastic pistols, by the way. Highly under-rated and excellent performers!!! Hope you enjoy yours!

603015
 

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Nice choice! I owned a couple of the bobbed versions and sadly had to let them go. I currently have a TA, and it's the only 1911 I own at the moment, after a long list. Totally love mine, but I agree about the ambi safety. It's a horrrible design IMO. I bought my TA used and it looked like it had been fired very little and never carried. Though it was in immaculate condition the safety plunger tube was barely hanging on, but was held down by the grip panel. I really dislike the split pin design. When it's not fit very well, which is often the case in production guns, it will force the plunger tube loose. The last three 1911's I bought with that split pin desing all had the same problem with the plunger tube. They all got changed to single side safeties.

If I am not mistaken this series of S&W shoulf have Wilson grip safeties, and maybe a couple of other parts I can't remember. Black Wilson parts should match.
 

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They black, all stainless have a matte nitrocarburized finish that’s pretty tough.

Scandium frames are anodized with nitrocarburized slides.

Mine is matte stainless with black controls with a finish I can’t identify.

They're very nice pistols, best of luck with yours.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
So an update on the S&W E-Series. I went this morning and shot my first rounds and was so impressed and the gun ran smooth and perfect. A lot better than I can say about my new Kimber. I came home to a package I ended up finding a setup for Colt dual recoil springs with a GI guide rod and I got a Wilson Combat Tactical Tactical Thumb Safety that is blued. I noticed That the frame and the slide both have a sheen to them but the grip safety and the mainspring housing are more of a dull finish. Although the original safety was had a sheen like the frame and the slide the fact that some other parts were dull, the matte blued safety fit in will a lot of the other parts. Thanks for the feedback, info, and suggestions from everyone.
 

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I just came across one this morning at the LGS. I did some cursory research and it seems to be out of production. Tagged at 1299, it was very comfortable in hand, the slide was extremely smooth, the scallops were not abrasive, and it appeared to built well. The S&W site has minimal archived info:


With prices on everything going skyward, 1300 doesn't seem out of line for a 1911 with the TA's features.
 

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I just came across one this morning at the LGS. I did some cursory research and it seems to be out of production. Tagged at 1299, it was very comfortable in hand, the slide was extremely smooth, the scallops were not abrasive, and it appeared to built well. The S&W site has minimal archived info:


With prices on everything going skyward, 1300 doesn't seem out of line for a 1911 with the TA's features.
I wasn’t aware that these fine 1911s are no longer in production.

Damned shame.

 

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I was also not aware that these were no longer made. Probably the most underrated 1911 out there and that is perhaps why they are no longer in production. They are excellent guns. I do not think that I have ever had a malfunction with mine.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I noticed between A month to two months ago that they no longer made these pistols. This was on my wish list so when I saw it in a store near me I scraped the money together to get it before I Wouldn't be able to Find it anymore. If you look on S&W's website they still make a version of this pistol it looks like but it has a nickel of polished Stainless steel finish.
 

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I think I paid between 8 and 9 for mine around eight or more years ago. So considering current pricing levels the 1300 doesn’t seem too bad. They are very good guns. Smith and Wesson figured out how to do external extractors very well a long time ago.
 

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I think I paid around 900 used in 99% cond. for mine if memory is correct.
I agree and have also said these are some of the most underrated guns in existence.
My "E" Series Commander.
IMG_20170415_153943_926.jpg
 

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I'm in a quandary now ... the S&W TA E-series I found at LGS1 is a few 100 more than a Springfield Lipseys Legend I saw at LGS2. There are no other higher quality 1911s to be had in this small town locale (though LGS2 has 10 Kimbers that can't be given away) in the $1K-$1.5K range, so if I take the plunge it's between the S&W and Springer. The Springfield specs are as follows:

MODEL: Custom Parkerized Legend - CALIBER/GAUGE: 45 ACP - FINISH: Black Parkerized
FRAME: Steel Frame - STOCK: Steel Frame - STOCK/GRIPS: Black G10 - BARREL: 5" - OVERALL LENGTH: 8.6"
CAPACITY: 7 + 1 - SIGHTS: Adjustable Bomar Rear | Fiber Optic Front - WEIGHT: 39 oz. - ADDL INFO: Funnelled Magwell; Nowlin Match FBI Barrel; Checkered Front and Back Strap

I prefer the sights on the S&W, but not the rail. Both guns are very handsome 1911s ... it's a tough call to make, since I can only go with one if I decide to splurge.

605331

605334
 

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Tough call; keep in mind that Smith&Wesson uses proprietary sight cuts on their 1911s.

Check out how they each feel in your hand because S&W used course checkering on the front strap and mainspring housing, and a flat, proprietary, front strap profile that you may not care for.

That being said, I love mine and would recommend it highly.

Good luck.
 

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Gator- I've had 2 SA 1911s over the years, a loaded and a RO. Both good quality guns. I own a E series now. I’d be comfortable with either, truth be known. So my recommendation is go with what feels better for your intended uses.

I prefer the E series slightly and am happy I have it. The external extractor doesn’t bother me a bit. Never had an issue with it at all. Superbly reliable, more accurate than I am, less sharp edges and great fit and finish.

sadened to hear its been discontinued. A very good 1911 IMO.
 

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A question for those more knowledgeable than myself: I have researched the external extractor design, and found far too many conflicting reports to make sense of anything. That said, does the external extractor design have any negatives re: exposure to moisture, grit, dirt, etc.? I hope to take a pistol combative class this summer, and would seriously consider using the S&W. Obviously I would not be doing a sand and mud test on the 1911, but I am curious about an exposed operating part and environmental factors. Again, it ultimately comes down to $, and whether the S&W merits the extra cost. Thank you in advance for any hands-on info.
 

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Since the 80’s I’ve owned and carried quite a few S&W semi-autos with the external extractors without any extractor issues. Being old school and traditional I do prefer the internal extractors on 1911’s but have done far more work on those compared to the external extractors.
 

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A few other makers tried to do external extractors on 1911's and had problems - Kimber was one (and went back to internal) but not the only one. The S&W 1911's way back when they first came out with external extractors had a few problems, but S&W engineers figured it out pretty quick and there have been no notable issues with their external extractor 1911's in quite some time; as far as I know, they were the only one to get it right until recently. I don't think you'll have a problem with it in your combat pistol class. There are a few advantages to the external extractor design concept: 1) The extractor hook can more easily slip over the rim when chambering in the few instances of the case rim not slipping up behind the extractor during feeding from the magazine, thereby reducing the risk of breaking the extractor hook, and 2) re-tensioning of the extractor is simply replacing the spring that operates it, reducing the effort required to properly re-tension when the extractor tension goes too low (almost impossible to go too high on it due to the spring design).
 
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