I'm not sure what you consider "big bucks" but I recently acquired a 1943 Remington Rand 1911A1. RR made more 1911A1s than Colt did and they were still in service during Viet Nam.
Do yourself a favor and hold out for the real deal. Mine cost more than my Sig and my Glock put together but I wouldn't trade it for the world.
It was love at first sight and I know that I'm holding a piece of history and one just like it brought comfort to my grandfather (WWII) and my father (Viet Nam). I've since been told that I paid top-shelf price for a less than average condition gun but I don't care. The only one I've found cheaper was re-finished and wearing hideous grips. I'll bet mine appreciates faster than a CD anyway. They aren't rare and I always see a few at every gunshow along with some WWII Colts.
FWIW - My dad was an anti-mortar radar operator '68-'69. He didn't talk much about the war but IIRC, he was with the 25th I.D. and was in the siege at Ben Het. He freely admitted that he couldn't hit anything with a .45 and said that the last bullet was reserved for himself if they were overrun. That tells me that he had one, authorized or not.
To a much greater extent than most mechanical devices, firearms are terribly unforgiving of any overconfidence, complacency or negligence.