What about Ruger's new SR1911?
I'm interested in the SR1911 also. They're very difficult to find in my area though.I agree here, Ruger SR1911 can be had for under $700.
The slide is machined from stainless steel bar stock.
The frame is machined from a stainless steel investment casting.
MIM Parts Count
The sear, disconnector, hammer, slide stop, safety, grip safety, mainspring housing, front sight and rear sight are MIM.
Conclusion and Next Steps
The SR1911 is a well-made, carefully thought-out expression of the Model of 1911A1. It delivers outstanding value for its modest MSRP of $799 (street price in the low- to-mid $600 range, with examples seen on offer in the $500 range). The pistol exudes quality. The configuration will not please all; however, it was intended to please most customers, which it seems to have accomplished.
The use of MIM parts, while off-putting to some, is to be expected at this price point. The SR1911’s product manager has assured us that Ruger has mastered the MIM process, and that their MIM parts are as reliable as those made via any other method. Time will tell.
Two components merit comment. First, the magazine catch, when firmly depressed, will “trap” the magazine and keep the magazine from dropping until some of the pressure on the catch button is released. It is a simple task to relieve the magazine catch inner surface; however, the catch should be “relieved” at manufacture. For those uncertain with a file, 10-8 Performance offers a pre-relieved catch.
Second, the slide stop pin, or shaft, is noticeably undersized, at 0.196” instead of the nominal and desired 0.200”. This should be corrected, as it may contribute to the premature lockbacks experienced during testing. What does contribute to lockbacks for certain is the over-long slide stop lug. A revised slide stop would seem to be in order. Meanwhile, slide stops with proper dimensions are available from a number of sources.
Separated at birth?
One of these slide stops is from the SR1911, the other from another major manufacturer’s 1911-type pistol.
Why the 0.008” step?
While the barrel bushing is not as tight as in a match gun, this is not a match gun. For those who wish a match fit, aftermarket bushings are readily available and easily fitted. EGW will even make you one with dimensions to order.
Similarly, we have come to expect the barrel to lock up by means of the barrel lugs contacting the slide stop pin. However, in service-grade pistols such as this “standing on the link” is not only common, it also reflects the original M1911 design.
Changing out the front sight may require slight modification, i.e., flattening, to the slide top just behind the front sight dovetail. As we move forward with this pistol, we will examine this area more closely.
Speaking of moving forward, Drake thinks highly enough of this pistol that he has purchased this sample. He feels that the SR1911 may be the best base pistol currently available for a custom build. To that end, he will be installing a Dawson rail so that he can use the pistol in the training he conducts at our state’s police academy. He is planning to change out the sights with a fiber optic front and a rear sight of his own design. Drake will be “texturing” the front strap in a pattern to be determined. Of course, he will replace the slide stop and relieve the magazine catch. Also, he will replace the plunger spring and tweak the thumb safety detents so that the force required to engage the safety is balanced with the force required to disengage it. Other minor refinements, as documented in our recent book, will also be made.
Walt, having had this T&E pistol appropriated by Drake, has a second sample on order for his own testing and development. That pistol will not be returning to Ruger either. There’s perhaps no more sincere comment than purchasing a test article.
SR1911 (above), Walt’s Larry Vickers Pistolsmith Class pistol (below).
Easy to see why Walt likes the SR1911 configuration.