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Discussion Starter #1
That is the question.

I am new here and didn't start posting until I decided I was going to buy the Kimber TLE RL. You all have been a great help to me...but I am at a critical stage in the buying process.

I have been shopping for holsters for the RL, without much success. Sure I have found a few makers that make them...but the selection is much more limited.

That brings me to the question: How important is it to have rails on my gun?

I have a Glock with rails...that I will likely sell after I feel 100% comfortable with the Kimber. My AR-15 has rails. I am a LEO, but I am a plainclothes Investigator. Because I wear my pistol 24/7...wearability and concealability are important.

I carry my Glock with rails EVERY DAY. The light (which I keep in my car) has been used on it ONE TIME in the last year. It was for a night shoot, where I was scheduled a time after dark. Knowing that I was going to shoot in the dark, I was a good boy and put my light on the gun, and wore an appropriate holster to the range. (Another officer and I tied for the best score...oh, he has the same gun/light combo)

If the SHTF...it is likely I will not have my M3 on my gun anyway. So...is it worth the small amount of extra money, and the major hassle of holster buying to have rails? That is the question I pose for you.

I have come to grips that the TLE will weigh more than my Glock 35. But having never seen or held that RL version....what I don't know is:

How much more does the RL weigh over the non-RL?
Is the slide noticably fatter on the RL version?

Is there something else I am missing that I should consider?
 

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IMHO skip the RL and get a standard frame. Then invest in a good flashlight that you'll actually carry and practice shooting with it. You'll have your choice of any decent leather gear you want and you may actually have the light if you need it. I've done plenty of warrant executions and have never felt a need to have the light on my gun. Most often I think it would be more of a hinderance then an aid.

later,
AJ
 

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I agree, I'm not a fan of mounted lights - just me. I've always trained with a surefire 6z.

Plus holsters are hard to come by.

If you want to use it as a home defense gun then that's a different story. You could keep the light on it all the time but you should train yourself on using it in that fashion.

For concealed carry I say pass. BUT I am not sure if the TLE RL II is more reliable. When I owned a TLE II it gave me FTE probs - but a guy I know that has the TLE RL II told me he has never had a prob.

Good luck
 

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My one and only light-equipped gun is a Rem 870 with a Surefire forestock. I think you already answered your question when you described your experiences with the Glock.
 

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The Marine Corps always taught us to maximize our options - the light rail gives another option. I can live with the minor inconvenience of the temporary situation of limited holsters because that will change very shortly.

The option of a lighted handgun in trained hands has much going for it and if properly utilized can be a great aide in many situations... personally, if you are going ahead an carrying a full size 1911 anyway, you will not regret having the option available.

You only have to need it one time to make it worth it...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Does anyone have any pics of the RL gun next to a standard 1911 frame that shows the thickness at the muzzle end of the frame? I am assuming it can't be any thicker than my Glock 35, right?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well....I did it.

I made my order today...and I am sure you all are filled with anticipation to find out which one I chose. :biglaugh:

I thought and thought and read and read...

I had to determin the pros and cons of the light rails.

PROS:

I already have a light for it...which I interchange with my AR-15 when needed.

The option to light the gun up for occasional uniformed special assignments is there. My current Duty Holster is for a light mounted gun. Although I am not in uniform often...when I am, I have become secure knowing there is a light on my gun (yes and also my belt) when I am in uniform even thouqh I have never used it.

I am hearing that the additional weight on the front of the gun makes for better recoil management and faster split times.

It's cool.


CONS:

Limited holster selection at this time. Although...I am certain that with the popularity of the rail guns (which is apparant) more and more 1911 holsters will be made with a rail option.

Might be a little heavier...but I can't imagine that its much.

Might be a little thicker at the muzzle end of the gun...but I can't imagine that it will be thicker than my Glock (same size rails) which I carry now.

$90 more than the non RL version

So...I think you can tell where I am going with this. The cons aren't enough to undo the pros in my opinion. If it was a range gun or a safe queen I wouldn't even bother with rails. If it was just a CCW gun...then I could go either way...but probably wouldn't care much for the rails. But the more I think about it, the easier my decision is. Being in Law Enforcement means I owe it to myself and the public to be prepared for everything. I never know when something will go down. So as Lazarus said..."You only have to need it one time to make it worth it..." I think he is right...and I needed to hear that. It is not that I am not capable of using a light in my weak hand...been doing it for over 10 years...but the option for a weapon mounted light just puts one more thing in my favor. I guess I should take all I can get.

I ordered my TLE RL II from Sporting Arms. They were very nice, and at $799 I couldn't complain.

I then got on the phone with Blade-Tech and put in an order for a straight drop belt holster, an IWB holster, and a double mag holder.

Next was a PM to TroyFD403 for four Metalform 45-797W magazines.

I am afraid to think of the reloading purchases I will have to make next.

Anything else you can suggest? Remember...new gun means all new gear. Luckily I still have my Glock 35 and all its goodies that I will keep around until the Kimber is well settled in. Then I'm going to start looking for another backup gun!

Sorry this was so long....but as a lurker...I know how much info can be gained from someone's ramblings. Next guy reading this might be in the same boat, and maybe this will help him make a decision.
 

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Good choice!

Well, I do have both or all three if you want to add the Tactical Custom to the mix and I think you made a very wise decision based on your needs and profession. I carry either the TLE or Tactical Custom concealed every day I'm not working (they don't permit it) and keep the TLE/RL beside the bed with an Insight M3 light attached and a Wilson Combat 10rd mag in it. I don't think you'll regret it one bit. Please let us know how your holster selection works out. I've been debating on ordering one for mine just in case I feel the need to carry it sometime. Besides, you can't have too many accessories to your guns! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yes...Tom at Sporting Arms has been great to deal with. I was talking with a woman there as well, and although I don't know her name, she was also very nice to deal with.

Oh...and the shopping continues.

I went ahead and picked up five Chip McCormick Base Pads for the magazines. I also figured I may as well get going with the reloading gear, so a Lee Deluxe Handgun 4-Die Set 45 ACP is on the way as well. Now...to start collecting brass...
 

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Discussion Starter #14
samurai said:
banzaijohn is right! Seriously, go with the rail to maximize options, like the Marine said.
That's kinda what I thought. I figured if I get the rail model...I can always carry without a light...or with a light. If I get the non-rail model...I don't have any choice. I like choices.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I most be the most impatient person on the planet!

I can't wait for my new Kimber to arrive. UGH! The holiday weekend really slowed things down! I just called the dealer today to see if they got the required paperwork I sent them...and they have not. It was supposed to be there today...but might be another day because of Thanksgiving.

To make things even worse....today I got my order from Midway. The mag pads and .45 dies are here already. Can't use any of them right now, so they sit on my reloading bench waiting.

I also got four boxes of Black Hills 230 FMJ from work today. That is a start towards breaking in the TLE.

I am still waiting on the mags and holsters...so I should just calm down anyway.

Does anyone else get this way when a new gun is "on the way"?
 

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im new to everything about 1911s. well im very soon buying a tactical pro II. is there any frame i can buy for the 4" that can be fitted with a rail or comes w rail. im new give me a chance:cool:

lol

sorry don't reply to this cause its posted as a new thread. new to this forum stuff to.

lol
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I'm getting excited now! I got my UPS 2nd Day Air tracking number from S.A.C.!!! The Kimber will be here on Friday! That's perfect, since I plan on shooting IPSC this Saturday. So far I've got 300 rounds of FMJ's that need to be pushed through the TLE barrel. May as well let some of it be at some cardboard and steel. Of course, I will get some trigger time in to check where the bullets are hitting, and also to check the accuracy.
 
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