The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > Hogan's Alley > Handguns: The Semi-automatic Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old February 11, 2013, 02:38 AM   #1
Keepin_Jeepin
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 3, 2007
Location: Chelan
Posts: 158
How are Rock Island 1911s made?

Are they made on some kid of original or trademarked tooling and machines? Kind of like the PTR-91 is made on real H&K machines vs the CETME and Century C3 is not.

From guys I have talked to they were knocking the Rock Island 1911s but I handled one today side by side to a Springfield and a Kimber. Honestly I couldnt tell a difference they all felt good. None of them felt like my 1935 Colt .38 Super but they all felt real good. The "low" end Rock Island felt easily as good to me as the twice-as-much Kimber in stainless.

Does anyone know a little more of how they are made or are they just good clones? I was going to buy one but they only had the 9mm in stock, and I wanted the .45
Keepin_Jeepin is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 03:10 AM   #2
BarryLee
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 29, 2010
Location: The ATL (OTP)
Posts: 2,760
They are intended to be a more entry level lower end 1911 and if I remember correctly are manufactured in the Philippines. As far as I know they are built to the same basic specifications as any basic 1911, so even at a low end they could still be a decent gun. I’m not sure about things like forged versus cast frames and MIM parts and all that stuff.
__________________
A major source of objection to a free economy is precisely that it ... gives people what they want instead of what a particular group thinks they ought to want. Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.
- Milton Friedman
BarryLee is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 09:04 AM   #3
9mm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 9, 2011
Location: Land of the Free
Posts: 2,711
Quote:
Rock Island-
Forged slide
Cast frame
Just about all small parts are MIM
site http://forums.1911forum.com/showthread.php?t=302824

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas49
RIA MIM parts;
slide stop
plunger tube
sear
disconnector
ejector

hope this one helps


willie
site http://forum.1911forum.com/showthread.php?p=1936809


From the guys over at 1911forum.
__________________
See user title
9mm is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 09:23 AM   #4
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 6,509
Rock Island (Armscor) 1911s are manufactured on state-of-the-art CNC machining centers. Currently, I believe slides are forged and frames are investment cast, but they either are changing or have already changed to using forged receivers as well as slides.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 09:28 AM   #5
Silent Bob
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 27, 2005
Posts: 288
There used to be an urban legend that they were made on old Colt or USGI machinery, but that is not true.

Frames are cast, slides are extruded from barstock. The slides were cast up until 2006 or so. There is talk that they are moving to barstock frames. Small parts are mostly MIM. The last ones I saw now have plastic instead of metal mainspring housings.
__________________
"Remember, the people on the Internet are just like you - ignorant, delusional, and dangerous."
Silent Bob is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 05:53 PM   #6
RickB
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 1, 2000
Location: Western WA
Posts: 5,769
They "just missed" on the shape of the tigger guard, which, for some reason, really bugs me.
When Caspian was selling both barstock and cast frames, the former cost double; a much different market.
RickB is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 06:01 PM   #7
Hawg
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 8, 2007
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 11,758
I've got a .45 ACP tactical model. It comes with a polished feed ramp and throated barrel. It feeds anything you want to put in it right out of the box. It has a lifetime warranty and customer service is excellent. The parkerizing looks chalky until its oiled up and then looks pretty good. The grips suck and I don't like the ACT mag. It has Novak styled non adjustable sights and the front sight is dovetailed, however they do not use Novak dovetails. Dawson makes adjustable sights that fit the RIA dovetails.
Hawg is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 08:19 PM   #8
KyJim
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 26, 2005
Location: The Bluegrass
Posts: 7,676
Unless just very recently changed, slides are from extruded steel, not forged. Frames are cast.

http://forum.m1911.org/showpost.php?...2&postcount=13
__________________
Jim's Rules of Carry: 1. Any gun is better than no gun. 2. A gun that is reliable is better than a gun that is not. 3. A hole in the right place is better than a hole in the wrong place. 4. A bigger hole is a better hole.
KyJim is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 08:46 PM   #9
a7mmnut
Junior member
 
Join Date: February 27, 2009
Location: NC Foothills
Posts: 1,150
I don't understand the fascination myself. If you really want a great handfitted 1911 pistol, Caspian still makes slides, Essex still makes frames, Bar-Sto still makes barrels, and you can do the rest. -7-
a7mmnut is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 08:57 PM   #10
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 6,509
Quote:
Originally Posted by KyJim
Unless just very recently changed, slides are from extruded steel, not forged.
Extruding is a form of forging.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old February 11, 2013, 10:16 PM   #11
David13
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 2, 2012
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 243
I had heard CNCs.
They are well known to be good out of the box at this time. I don't know if that was the situation always.
dc
David13 is offline  
Old February 12, 2013, 05:30 AM   #12
Hawg
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 8, 2007
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 11,758
Quote:
They are well known to be good out of the box at this time. I don't know if that was the situation always.
Several years ago they had a pretty bad rep. I guess that's why there's so much hate for them now. Nothing wrong with a cast frame as long as you don't want to make a .460 Rowland out of it. Ruger has been using cast from the get go and nobody knocks them for it.
Hawg is offline  
Old February 13, 2013, 09:27 PM   #13
KyJim
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 26, 2005
Location: The Bluegrass
Posts: 7,676
Quote:
Extruding is a form of forging.
No. Extruding is pushing metal through a mold, like the old Play Dough molds. The steel can be one of several types including powdered steel and others. I have what kind of extruded steel is in the RIA 1911 but nobody seems to really know.

Just to clarify, I am not knocking RIAs in any manner. Just stating the facts.
__________________
Jim's Rules of Carry: 1. Any gun is better than no gun. 2. A gun that is reliable is better than a gun that is not. 3. A hole in the right place is better than a hole in the wrong place. 4. A bigger hole is a better hole.
KyJim is offline  
Old February 14, 2013, 06:06 AM   #14
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 6,509
I know what extruding is, and if you read up on extruding and forging, as I did when Armscor first switched from investment cast slides to extruded, you will find that extruding is considered a form of forging, and imparts many of the same benefits to the metal that drop forging does, including densification and alignment of grain structure.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old February 14, 2013, 05:42 PM   #15
KyJim
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 26, 2005
Location: The Bluegrass
Posts: 7,676
I have read about it and there is absolutely nothing to indicate RIA uses a forged slide. In fact, the extrusions Armscor used as of 2008 were definitely NOT forgings. As you know, Armscor also makes the STI Spartan using some STI parts but with Armscor making the slide, frame, and barrel. Ivan, from RIA, had indicated they used extruded slides. Having just purchased an STI Spartan, I wrote to STI in 2010 and asked what type of metal was used in the extruded slides. Here is the response I received:

Quote:
From: Chris <Chris@stiguns.com>
Subject: Question on Spartan
To: jim_shackelford@yahoo.com
Date: Wednesday, April 7, 2010, 9:31 AM

Spartan slide is made from forged 4140 material. It used to be from extrusion but we shifted to forging around two years ago, for quality improvement in terms of toughness and durability.


Chris Schirmer

STI Customer Service

Quality Control

114 Halmar Cove

Georgetown, Tx. 78628

Ph: 512-819-0656

Fax: 512-819-0465

Email: Chris@stiguns.com
Now, this is pretty good evidence that Armscor was not using forged steel in their extruded slides at that time. I have never seen RIA claim their slide was forged. So, I have concluded they are not forged. This may or may not be important to folks.

My question is why do you say Armscor is using forged steel in their extrusion process for RIAs?
__________________
Jim's Rules of Carry: 1. Any gun is better than no gun. 2. A gun that is reliable is better than a gun that is not. 3. A hole in the right place is better than a hole in the wrong place. 4. A bigger hole is a better hole.
KyJim is offline  
Old February 14, 2013, 08:57 PM   #16
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 6,509
Quote:
Originally Posted by KyJim
My question is why do you say Armscor is using forged steel in their extrusion process for RIAs?
Look, Mate -- I didn't say they "use forged steel in their extrusions." I know their slides are extruded, and I know Ivan personally so I'm not talking out of school. What I said is that extruding is a form of forging. When Ivan first told me Armscor had changed to extruded slides I didn't even know that steel could be extruded, so I did a bunch of reading up. Turns out steel can be extruded, and extruding conveys many of the same attributes as hammer or drop forging but is better suited to some shapes -- such as firearms slides. And extruding IS considered a form of forging.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old February 14, 2013, 09:14 PM   #17
Shane Tuttle
Staff
 
Join Date: November 28, 2005
Location: Blue Grass, IA
Posts: 8,599
If anyone disagrees with Aguila Blanca, then I suggest reading up...notably under Cold Forging about 1/4 way down the page.

https://www.forging.org/types-forging-processes
__________________
If it were up to me, the word "got" would be deleted from the English language.

Posting and YOU: http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/posting
Shane Tuttle is offline  
Old February 15, 2013, 01:17 AM   #18
KyJim
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 26, 2005
Location: The Bluegrass
Posts: 7,676
I think that if you read my posts, I never said you couldn't use forgings in the extrusion process. The question is what is used in RIAs? The answer is that nobody knows for sure but there is some circumstantial evidence a couple of years ago that it wasn't forged steel.


Edited:

Okay, I was going to email RIA and ask. I went to their website and, lo and behold, on their FAQ page was the following:
Quote:
What are your frames and slides made out of?

Our 1911 Frames are Cast 4140 Carbon Steel and our Slides are Forged 4140 Steel.
So, the slides are forged. The question now is whether they are still using the extrusion process but that's a different issue altogether.
__________________
Jim's Rules of Carry: 1. Any gun is better than no gun. 2. A gun that is reliable is better than a gun that is not. 3. A hole in the right place is better than a hole in the wrong place. 4. A bigger hole is a better hole.

Last edited by KyJim; February 15, 2013 at 01:23 AM.
KyJim is offline  
Old February 15, 2013, 01:52 AM   #19
Redhawk5.5+P+
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 4, 2012
Location: NV
Posts: 743
I'd buy and did buy a RIA 1911, before I'd buy a Taurus for more money, but I did hear some positives about the Ts 1911s.
Redhawk5.5+P+ is offline  
Old February 15, 2013, 03:39 AM   #20
Keepin_Jeepin
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 3, 2007
Location: Chelan
Posts: 158
Great thread, thanks for the discussion.

Poster above me ^

I would never buy a Taurus 1911, or any other Taurus gun for that matter. I really dislike my Judge. Poor bluing, bad fit and finish.

On another note, my local shop has no more RIA, but they now have American Express which seems like another good cheap brand. I missed the window on the RIA because I got a deal on some other guns but I might pick up an American Express.


@Silent Bob
That is why I was asking and what I was wondering. Im glad everything is mostly cleared up for me.
Keepin_Jeepin is offline  
Old February 17, 2013, 01:39 AM   #21
Topthis
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 7, 2005
Posts: 857
Buy it! I have been posting on a few here on TFL tonight, regarding 1911's. I own several now...used to think that they were for old folks etc., was buying all the Poly stuff. I've been selling and trading into all 1911's. Of the several I own, most are Custom (which I wouldn't suggest right out of the gate, because they are ADDICTIVE and expensive!!), but I do own one Rock Island Armoury 1911 Commander...and there hasn't been a single issue with it! Other than it is heavy as heck and the sights leave alot to be desired, I wouldn't hesistate recommending one. I have about 2k through it...no problems at all. As heavy as it is, I carry it when I go hiking and bring it when I go camping, cuz I sure as heck aint gonna bring a $2000 pistol!!
Topthis is offline  
Old February 17, 2013, 03:14 AM   #22
Metal Bird
Junior Member
 
Join Date: November 13, 2012
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 8
How are Rock Island 1911s made?

Armscor / Rock Island Armory is good stuff as far as I am concerned. I own some and enjoy them all. Sure they may not be as pretty out of the box as others but they sure shoot good. Any of my cheap Rocks will out shoot any of my buddies Kimbers and Springers ... Makes them mad too. Just change the sights and change the grips and you are ready to go!
They are great as is or work as a good base to customize yourself if you chose.
As mentioned STI uses the Armscor Steel guns with their parts put in them. I do have an all STI made AL frame gun of theirs (which is very nice by the way).
Armscor also make the Charles Daly ones, the High Standard, the Citadels and others.
Great customer service and support. I have Martin the CEO of the company emailing me in response to questions.
I know a lot of people look down on them, but I feel good knowing I have a better gun that cost a third if what theirs did :-) never any problem with any if them, and if there ever was Armscor will gladly take care of it and have you covered.

Last edited by Metal Bird; February 17, 2013 at 10:18 AM.
Metal Bird is offline  
Old February 17, 2013, 06:31 AM   #23
Snowdog
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 31, 2001
Location: Hendersonville, North Carolina
Posts: 1,061
I'll tell ya, I have both an RIA (box marked Twin Pines, pistol stamped RIA) and a series 1 Kimber classic custom and from a performance point of view, I'd actually give the nod to my RIA.

However, fit and finish goes to the Kimber. As I would hope since it cost me $700 from a LGS (and $175 for the aftermarket electroless nickel) in '96 or so whereas I paid $299 for my RIA from CDNN in 2004.

I shoot my RIA more often than my Kimber as it handles my 200gr SWC reloads like a dream and is nearly as accurate. The Kimber has had around 1K rounds through it. The RIA is closer the 7K. Neither have experienced any breakage... yet.

I like both plenty and though I'm not certain about the Kimber, I suspect both feature MIM parts.

__________________
"What We Do In Life, Echoes In Eternity"
-Gladiator-

*************************
Brevity Is The Soul of Wit.

-Shakespeare-
Snowdog is offline  
Old February 17, 2013, 08:35 AM   #24
FALPhil
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 10, 2007
Location: Racoon City
Posts: 933
Quote:
I like both plenty and though I'm not certain about the Kimber, I suspect both feature MIM parts.
I am not sure what Kimber uses these days, but when they set up their 1911 line, they hired Chip McCormick as a consultant to get them started, IIRC. Chip, as many know, was a pioneer in precision MIM manufacturing. I believe the early Kimber 1911s featured some MIM internal small parts.

I have a CMC MIM sear in my Springer. It is approaching 12K rounds now with no problems. Trigger pull is still a crisp 3.75 pounds. I took the gun down at 8K rounds, and the engagement surface looked great. I lube it with Lubriplate.
FALPhil is offline  
Old February 17, 2013, 09:20 AM   #25
Sarge
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 12, 2002
Location: MO
Posts: 4,911
I have owned and or worked on several Rock Island GIs and Springfields, right on up through the 'Loaded' model.

Cast vs Forged & Cosmetics aside, I think the Rock Island is a shade better pistol. The Rock's internals, pins and barrels are simply better, and more consistent with GI dimensions, than what I'm seeing in Springfields.

Cosmetics & Rollmarks? Springfield all the way.
__________________
I'm inclined to think if a man hasn't gotten his point across in 4912 attempts, 4913 probably isn't going to do it.
Sarge is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:20 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.12696 seconds with 7 queries