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Appalachian Adventurer
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well folks, I'm going to find out. Out of sheer curiosity I recently picked up a ATI 1911 (item code ATIGFX45MIL). Just a plain-Jane 1911 replica. I've been wanting to play with a 1911 platform for awhile and for the price I figured, "what the h#*l." I also figured that I would bring ya'll along with my journey of discovery.

This first post is going to be on my pre-range first impressions.



First, this gun is fairly heavy. Steel on steel on steel, its a pretty solid gun. (Maybe a little like myself.... :taped: ) But for the weight it is pretty well balanced. The diamond cut grip are quite aggressive, more aggressive than I prefer, but I doubt I'll keep them long anyways.

What really sold the gun to me is the trigger. Out of the box it is fairly fantastic. Absolutely no creep, no grittiness, its smooth as a baby's bottom. There is a tiny bit of take up, but that is fine for this most basic of triggers. Its break is clean and sharp, and if it is a tad heavier than other 1911's I have played around with, I would honestly say that this trigger is better than many Kimber, Remington, and Para triggers I've had in my hands (I sold firearms for awhile so I may have played with a few too many 1911's. These are the 3 that I specifically remember the triggers being spongier or gritter when compared to others I felt prior to this purchase).

To not the bad side, there is not a super tight slide to frame fit. There is not a lot of wiggle, but it is there. Also I know this hammer and grip safety are probably gonna bite me pretty bad. (I shoot a lot of Glock and CZ, so I,m used to choking up on the grip.) Also, the pistol only came with one 8 round magazine (which I have some qualms about but we'll see) so I also picked up a standard 7 round GI style magazine.


Once I got this home, I did do a full detail strip to examine the components. I have to say, the gun was pretty clean. Not a ton of milling marks, all components seems to be machined fairly sharply. I also cleaned and lubed/greased the pistol at this point.

Afterwards I hand cycled some ammunition through just to get an idea of what worked. Ball ammo (Aguila and Federal aluminum case) both cycled fine with not hang ups or jamming with hand cycling. I also tested some cheap Remington JHP rounds. Here I did have an issue.

The stock 8 round magazine was a PITA with these rounds. :mad: If it was loaded with between 5 and 8 rounds, the JHPs would not feed at all. They would constantly hang up on the frame. If it was 4 rounds or less, they tended to work alright. Now when I switched to the stock GI magazine, these JHPs ran fine. I am hoping that this is just a magazine issue, but we will see once I actually shoot live ammo through the pistol.

All in all, I think this is seeming like a good quality for cost pistol so far. I am impressed with the machining and trigger, even if the stock magazine seems to be mediocre (1911 magazines are reasonably priced and everywhere, so this doesn't concern me greatly.) and the gun is pretty chunky.

I'm hoping to hit the range tomorrow, so hopefully I'll have an further update on performance. (After that, maybe I'll start modding it)
 

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Appalachian Adventurer
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225 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
The guy I bought it from had refurbished ones for a little less. $330-340. If it ends up being decent, I may even pick one of those up to. If one 1911 is good 2 is better hahah.
 

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Depends on what you're using it for, and the quality of the casting/forging. If it's just a glovebox gun that you'll take to the range every now and then, it'll do fine. If you're going to be shooting a lot, like 5,000 rounds a week, you'll want a good quality forged frame. At the very least, something like a Springfield GI. The majority of them are milspec, and you can customize as you like.

I'm not familiar with ATI, but if it's built to MILSPEC specifications, it'll be a decent gun. You don't have to spend $2k to get a good pistol.
 

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Viva la revolution!
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Depends on what you're using it for, and the quality of the casting/forging. If it's just a glovebox gun that you'll take to the range every now and then, it'll do fine. If you're going to be shooting a lot, like 5,000 rounds a week, you'll want a good quality forged frame. At the very least, something like a Springfield GI. The majority of them are milspec, and you can customize as you like.

I'm not familiar with ATI, but if it's built to MILSPEC specifications, it'll be a decent gun. You don't have to spend $2k to get a good pistol.
but you do to get a pretty one:D:
 

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Dunno what exactly you mean by that, my dads Kimber was a jam-o-matic until he sent it back. Plenty of similar stories around.

Looks wiz though.
Similar stories can be found for essentially any firearm brand or model in mass production, although I do believe reputations are typically earned when it comes to firearm companies. That being said, I never stated Kimber is or isn't a good gun. I was simply curious as to how the ATI compared to it, and the other listed 1911's.
 

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The way I understand is the is a Philipenes made gun. As a poster above had said. The price is low because they use cast steel instead of forged steel as the higher priced brands. If it were to be a bedside gun with low round count it would suit me fine. If it were for competitions or hard core battle use , I would pass.
There is a busy Las Vegas rental range that has dozens of the RIA .45s in the beyond repair box. That tells me all I need to know.
 

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Dunno what exactly you mean by that, my dads Kimber was a jam-o-matic until he sent it back. Plenty of similar stories around.

Looks wiz though.
I hear Kimbers are hit and miss, which was enough for me not to spend a grand on one. If I'm going to spend that much on a 1911, I'll just get a Colt.
 

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Comic, not your lawyer!
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I have a few of these by ATI, Rock Island, Armscor... same company from same location. I think they make more frames for 1911s than all others combined, or something like that I once saw/read somewhere.

Watched a video of their operations from their site. Tight production.

I've been overall impressed with my samples. Not shot a lot due to the cost of ammo, but the fit, function, etc. seem high quality.

Some folks will dismiss them for the MIM parts, which are found in most guns and products today. I'm okay with them, and if you really must replace the MIM parts, then it's not hard or expensive. $400 is far easier to digest than $900 for a 1911 handgun that does the same thing.

Overwhelmingly these have a large fan base of happy users on the 'net, and hence why I bought mine.
 

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Humble Coffee Maker
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2,190 Posts
I have heard that the ATI and other phillipine models run pretty well. That being said, and this is just my opinion, why get a cheap 1911? If you are going to spend 300-500 bucks on a handgun I think most would be better served with a glock, xd, m&p etc. 1911's should be quality made and made in america(or at least assembled there ha). Im not knocking it, if it works it works but I like my 1911's to be BA. I own a springfield TRP and MC operator and have a les baer premier II on the way.
 

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Humble Coffee Maker
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2,190 Posts
I have a few of these by ATI, Rock Island, Armscor... same company from same location. I think they make more frames for 1911s than all others combined, or something like that I once saw/read somewhere.

Watched a video of their operations from their site. Tight production.

I've been overall impressed with my samples. Not shot a lot due to the cost of ammo, but the fit, function, etc. seem high quality.

Some folks will dismiss them for the MIM parts, which are found in most guns and products today. I'm okay with them, and if you really must replace the MIM parts, then it's not hard or expensive. $400 is far easier to digest than $900 for a 1911 handgun that does the same thing.

Overwhelmingly these have a large fan base of happy users on the 'net, and hence why I bought mine.
And this is the problem with the gun world in my opinion. A XD9 and a glock 19"do the same thing" in my opinion. They will both be reliable, have the same quaity parts, and shoot combat accurate. Saying a ATI 1911 and a $900 kimber/springfield loaded/SW1911 will "do the same thing" is a lie because they wont. Most of the foreign made 1911's are somewhat reliable but they likely won't feed JHP's reliably, they dont have match grade barrels, triggers, or other parts. They have no upgrades. 1911's are generally one of those areas where you get what you pay for. People don't buy guns like glocks, Xds, M&P's and the like for their accuracy, they buy them for CHEAP reliablity. People buy 1911's because you can chase bullet holes with them. You aren't going to get that kind of accuracy out of an ATI or a RIA. Just the truth. A Colt gold cup, Dan Wesson, Springfield TRP, Kimber raptor etc etc etc....you are going to get match grade accuracy.

Now I am not disagreeing that you can get crappy expensive 1911's that dont feed, and that there are lots of foreign jobs that shoot until the wheels fall off. But I have owned every type of pistol and 1911 to include the RIA GI to Springfield TRP's and Les Baers. Will the RIA GI shoot reliably with ball ammo? yeah sure, most of the time, as long as I was using a good mag, that didnt come with the gun. It also rusted the first time I took it camping. Just some food for thought, not trying to start an argument.
 

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Humble Coffee Maker
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I hear Kimbers are hit and miss, which was enough for me not to spend a grand on one. If I'm going to spend that much on a 1911, I'll just get a Colt.
100% agree on kimbers, they are junk imho. However I have had some colts lately and while they were reliable I just didn't the the value of them. they epoxy a lot of parts and the epoxy oozes out.....like wtf.....glue? really?

Springfield, Dan Wesson, and Sig are making the best 1911's for the money right now imho. I do Springfield because I have always liked their higher end models and their CS and support. Les Baer is my next pistol but I have heard wonderful tings about Dan Wessons.
 

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100% agree on kimbers, they are junk imho. However I have had some colts lately and while they were reliable I just didn't the the value of them. they epoxy a lot of parts and the epoxy oozes out.....like wtf.....glue? really?

Springfield, Dan Wesson, and Sig are making the best 1911's for the money right now imho. I do Springfield because I have always liked their higher end models and their CS and support. Les Baer is my next pistol but I have heard wonderful tings about Dan Wessons.
Damn, didn't know Colt was going downhill. That's a real shame. One of the first "real pistols" (bigger than a 22) was a Colt. It was a long time ago, but I remember it being a damn fine gun.
 
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