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Old January 9, 2017, 05:44 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Rogervzv
Baers tend to jam until you've put a thousand rounds or so through them. The Dan Wessons are reliable right out of the box due to the precision with which they are manufactured.

The real difference between Baers and Dan Wessons is the manufacturing process. Baers are hand-fitted "by a member of the Baer family." Dan Wessons are manufactured by means of state-of-the-art CNC machinery which allows for very fine tolerances in a production process not requiring much or usually any hand-fitting.



Do you think the frames/slides Baer uses are machined on a 60 year Bridgeport.
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Old January 9, 2017, 05:53 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by laytonj1
My Dan Wesson PM-9, on the other hand, locked up tight at less than 50 rds. The slide was stuck half way back. It apparently suffered from Dan Wesson's well documented galling issue.


For a couple years there a DW that was locked up tight from galling was a weekly thread on some of the forums, a simple search will confirm this. Probably a good reason why Baer doesn't offer their 1.5" at 50 yard guarantee with any of the SS models.
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Old January 9, 2017, 11:07 PM   #28
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I've had the exact opposite experience. My Baers have been trouble free from day one, zero malfunctions. My Dan Wesson PM-9, on the other hand, locked up tight at less than 50 rds. The slide was stuck half way back. It apparently suffered from Dan Wesson's well documented galling issue.
My Dan Wesson was also the least accurate 1911 I've owned.
Well, as long as we are all chiming in, I own not one but two Dan Wesson PM-7 .45s. Both were flawless out of the box and to my recollection neither has ever jammed. In a shoot out my Dans will outperform any Baer I've had good natured contests with at the range. I don't, by the way, claim that to be a scientifically valid test. But my Dans are remarkably accurate. I will say that I know nothing of the PM-9.

Every Baer owner I have ever spoken with told me that their Baer gun absolutely needed breaking in, and many or most reported that the slides were so tight when new that they could barely rack the slide, let alone depend on the gun to cycle reliably. I've heard this from enough people that I believe it. My Dans, by contrast, functioned perfectly right out of the box.

Hand-fitting may sound like a good idea, but modern digital manufacturing techniques will generally produce a superior product.
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Old January 10, 2017, 12:24 AM   #29
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Well, as long as we are all chiming in, I own not one but two Dan Wesson PM-7 .45s. Both were flawless out of the box and to my recollection neither has ever jammed. In a shoot out my Dans will outperform any Baer I've had good natured contests with at the range. I don't, by the way, claim that to be a scientifically valid test. But my Dans are remarkably accurate. I will say that I know nothing of the PM-9.

Every Baer owner I have ever spoken with told me that their Baer gun absolutely needed breaking in, and many or most reported that the slides were so tight when new that they could barely rack the slide, let alone depend on the gun to cycle reliably. I've heard this from enough people that I believe it. My Dans, by contrast, functioned perfectly right out of the box.

Hand-fitting may sound like a good idea, but modern digital manufacturing techniques will generally produce a superior product.
I didn't say that Dan Wesson's weren't good guns, certainly they are some of the better production line 1911s available but production line guns none the less. And, as such, DWs simply do not receive the hand fitting and attention that sets the higher end "semi custom" pistols apart. Baer's guns are essentially hand built, with practically every part being hand fitted to each individual gun. That is the kind of attention to detail that most of us are looking for when we're shopping higher end guns. My Baer Boss locks up tight as a vault, is probably the most accurate 1911 I've owned, and in spite of that it has run without failure from the first round out of the box, that's the result of individuals making sure that parts fit precisely as opposed to relying on machined tolerances. That is one of the main things that sets the Baers, Browns, Wilsons, Nighthawks, etc, apart from higher production/lower cost manufacturers - time spent fitting and finishing each gun. If that is important to you then they're worth the cost.
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Old January 10, 2017, 12:55 AM   #30
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If you want the ultimate in fit and finish, buy a Cabot. They are "production" pistols that are fitted tighter than most custom pistols but, because they are production, you could go into their final assembly room and pick and slide and any frame at random, and the fit would be perfect. I've done it -- I was astonished. The finish on the parts was so smooth that the slide glided like it was running on oil, but the parts were absolutely bone dry.

http://cabotgun.com/better-than-custom-1911-pistols/
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Old January 10, 2017, 06:55 AM   #31
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Dan Wesson makes a nice production line gun but they aren't 'high end". The hand work and attention to fit, finish, etc., aren't anywhere near what Baers, Browns, Wilsons, Nighthawk, GI, etc., receive.
I put Dan Wesson with Baer and Brown based on quality small parts, no MIM.
I've got all three and all are quality, fit, finish, ect...
Baer absolutely the tightest; expected malfunction from it, was happily disappointed.
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Old January 10, 2017, 10:22 AM   #32
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Every Baer owner I have ever spoken with told me that their Baer gun absolutely needed breaking in, and many or most reported that the slides were so tight when new that they could barely rack the slide, let alone depend on the gun to cycle reliably. I've heard this from enough people that I believe it. My Dans, by contrast, functioned perfectly right out of the box.
I want a gun that has to be broken in. That is kind of the point of a custom gun. If this were a carry gun then I would want something that is loose and reliable out of the box. As a machine shop owner with high end CNC mills (just like every gun manufacturer uses) I can tell you that a milled finish will never be smooth enough to be both tight and reliable without a finishing process such as lapping into place. To a lesser extent Kimber does the same thing (at least in Target n models) with there slide to frame fit. Break in required.
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Old January 10, 2017, 10:33 AM   #33
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.... Baer's guns are essentially hand built, with practically every part being hand fitted to each individual gun. That is the kind of attention to detail that most of us are looking for when we're shopping higher end guns .... That is one of the main things that sets the Baers, Browns, Wilsons, Nighthawks, etc, apart from higher production/lower cost manufacturers - time spent fitting and finishing each gun. If that is important to you then they're worth the cost.
Well, the last sentence here is absolutely true. If hand-fitting is important enough to the buyer, for whatever reason, then it is worth the cost. Basic free market economics.

All I am saying is that logic and experience indicates that hand-fitting does not particularly yield either a more reliable or a more accurate firearm than modern CNC machining techniques. To the contrary, if Baer guns are built in a way that requires hand-fitting after manufacturing, that causes me to wonder why. YMMV.
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Old January 10, 2017, 10:59 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Rogervzv
All I am saying is that logic and experience indicates that hand-fitting does not particularly yield either a more reliable or a more accurate firearm than modern CNC machining techniques. To the contrary, if Baer guns are built in a way that requires hand-fitting after manufacturing, that causes me to wonder why. YMMV.
I agree. The fit on Cabot 1911s is superior to anything from any other vendor, whether the vendor is "production," "semi-custom," or "custom." And Cabot guns are all done by CNC. The rails are smoother than any hand fitting can ever produce, and they DON'T need 500 rounds of "break in" before they'll run.
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Old January 10, 2017, 08:55 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Aguila Blanca
I agree. The fit on Cabot 1911s is superior to anything from any other vendor, whether the vendor is "production," "semi-custom," or "custom." And Cabot guns are all done by CNC.



Pretty bold statement, especially seeing the last couple of pics I've seen of them it looked like the grip safety wasn't fit any better than most run of the mill $2k 1911s.
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Old January 11, 2017, 06:17 AM   #36
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I purchased most of my 1911s back in the 80s and early 90s. I have 2 baers (pii and prowler Iv) , a Springfield custom, a truly custom gun built by behlert precision (who at the time was an excellent pistol smith) , a custom para built on a gs frame, and a few others. My point is I have pistols that run the gamut from semi custom to completely hand built by both very well know gun smith and lesser know. Gunsmith. The difference between the baers and the behlert is negligible and honestly the Baer is probably a bit better with the exception of the finish, slide to frame fit and trigger. I've never had a malfunction of any kind w the baers. I would never diminish Austin behlert but I did have to send it back once and it has malfunctioned. Custom guns have come along way since the 80s but don't assume perfection and the difference between a $2000 Baer and $4000 Cabot/Wilson/guncrafter/nighthawk etc is probably not $1500-$2000 worthy. Much is name and negligible. You want to spend $5-$10k you'll probably see a difference but were it me, that's an heirloom. I don't need to spend that for an edc or competition/range gun.
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Old January 11, 2017, 03:34 PM   #37
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1stmar's observations are consistent with what I am saying. No doubt a hand-fitted handgun can be a very good and accurate handgun. But is is an expensive way to make a gun. Modern CNC manufacturing can make a superb gun (read: as good or better as compared to hand-fitting) at a much lower cost.
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Old January 11, 2017, 04:33 PM   #38
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You can pick up a brand new STI 2011 for under $2k; and that is a fairly amazing pistol.
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Old January 11, 2017, 05:21 PM   #39
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Many valid posts in this thread, I think they all center around what you want it for. If it's an accurate reliable target/range/completion pistol you won't need to spend more that $1500-2k. If you WANT a Wilson super grade Cruz it says Wilson, perfectly ok and many do.
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Old January 11, 2017, 06:55 PM   #40
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They are a little out of my $ budget. But, has anyone seen a Jesse James 1911. They look fantastic IMO. Jesse talks a good story but I have never had the chance to really inspect any of his work.
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Old January 11, 2017, 09:22 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by Roger
1stmar's observations are consistent with what I am saying. No doubt a hand-fitted handgun can be a very good and accurate handgun. But is is an expensive way to make a gun. Modern CNC manufacturing can make a superb gun (read: as good or better as compared to hand-fitting) at a much lower cost.



I've always liked your posts Roger and agree with you most of the time. On the other hand you really have to stop with this hand fitting vs CNC machining tangent you have been talking about in this thread.

It just solidifies that you don't really know the whole scope of the subject matter at hand. Again, with all do respect, the major parts Baer uses for their 1911s are all produced on very similar "modern" CNC machining centers as the made in Korea parts DW uses. Les Baer has simply chosen to leave more material on and do the final fitting with files. They are very tight when new but just keep getting smoother and smoother the more you shoot them.

Here is a 50 yard test target from my friends Baer UM with 1.5" guarantee at 50 yards. Maybe a DW can produce something similar but I seriously doubt it.


http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y29...eed/BaerUM.jpg

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Old January 11, 2017, 10:12 PM   #42
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I've always liked your posts Roger and agree with you most of the time. On the other hand you really have to stop with this hand fitting vs CNC machining tangent you have been talking about in this thread.

It just solidifies that you don't really know the whole scope of the subject matter at hand. Again, with all do respect, the major parts Baer uses for their 1911s are all produced on very similar "modern" CNC machining centers as the made in Korea parts DW uses. Les Baer has simply chosen to leave more material on and do the final fitting with files. They are very tight when new but just keep getting smoother and smoother the more you shoot them.
I'm actually not sure what you are saying here, my friend. I do know that Baer parts are machined, etc. But my understanding is that no, the process is not a true digitally controlled process, and hand-fitting is accordingly required. And the Baer folks extoll it as a virtue -- which it is, if you want a hand-fitted gun.

Anyway, I've seen plenty of information that supports the above. I did not mean to hijack this thread, but I am not the one who started extolling hand-fitting versus CNC processes. I did respond to it. I've shot a lot of Baers and a lot of other 1911s, and I suppose by now my opinion is obvious enough.
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Old January 12, 2017, 01:05 AM   #43
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I'm actually not sure what you are saying here, my friend. I do know that Baer parts are machined, etc. But my understanding is that no, the process is not a true digitally controlled process, and hand-fitting is accordingly required.

What I'm saying Roger is the Baer parts are produced on very similar or most likely much better machining tools. There's a good chance that your understanding is wrong but you have to consider there are a <lot> of different opinions and we all have them.

Last edited by Evan Thomas; January 14, 2017 at 12:36 PM. Reason: language.
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Old January 12, 2017, 06:20 AM   #44
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For about $1,450 (Dan Wesson Valor) one can have a new 1911 made with quality small parts (no MIM), night sights.
I paid not quite that much for my own DW Valor, and this can hit my targets better than I can, but I can do pretty well with mine.

I use my 1911's primarily for range & target shooting, although my Ruger SR1911 Commander length is a great carry gun. But I'd like to get a Dan Wesson Pointman 7 (PM-7) for my next pistol, and somebody here has to explain to me how a more expensive "name" 1911 is going to let me hit my targets better than the DW Valor I shoot now or the DW PM-7 that I plan to get
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Old January 12, 2017, 10:44 AM   #45
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What I'm saying Roger is the Baer parts are produced on very similar or most likely much better machining tools. There's a good chance that your understanding is wrong but you have to consider there are a <lot> of different opinions and we all have them.
Well, it sounds to me like that's an opinion, not a statement of fact. If Baer really used state-of-the-art machining, their guns would not be hand-fitted and would not (as they do) require 500 rounds for break in. None of my Colts or Dan Wessons required such break-in.
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Old January 12, 2017, 11:07 AM   #46
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Well, it sounds to me like that's an opinion, not a statement of fact. If Baer really used state-of-the-art machining, their guns would not be hand-fitted and would not (as they do) require 500 rounds for break in. None of my Colts or Dan Wessons required such break-in.
State of the art machining is still machining. Your Colts and DWs are not made as tight as the Baer and therefore do not require hand fitting. Slides and frames are milled. Regardless of how new the machine is, the process is limited in tolerance. Our machines repeat down to .0002. The parts do not over a short production run. Even with SPC and tool wear compensation etc..
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Old January 12, 2017, 01:04 PM   #47
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Very interesting thread. A lot of opinions. Some assumptions.
I own 5 different .45 autos, all 5" except my Jim Hoag 6" long-slide:
1) Wilson Combat Classic Supergrade: OTD in PRK, new, $5020 in 2010, Hand everything, fitting, checkering, action work, great gun, I do not believe that they will shoot 1"@25yds, but I do believe that they will shoot close to that.
2) Springfield Armory Custom Shop Rob Letham TGO1, Beautiful gun, hand everything, checkering fitting, action work, $4100 OTD in PRK in 2014, Slightly over 200 made so far.
3) Ed Brown Exec. Target, $3050 OTD in PRK in 2014, Machine checkering, typical fitting for a limited production gun. considered by a lot of peeps as one of the best looking .45 autos on the market.
4) Les Baer Premier II, $machine checkering, 3"@50yd guarantee, but I'm doubtful the 1.5"@5 yd guarantee gun will shoot quite that.
5) Jim Hoag Mastergrade 6" long-slide: First class custom all the way, built by Hoag in early '70's, everything done by hand, hand checkering, Bar-sto 6" barrel, slide made by Hoag using 2 slides & welding together & re-machining. Everything done in Jim's shop other than the hard-chrome.

Most comfortable grip: Hoag longslide with the Ed Brown a very close 2nd.
Most precision / accurate: Probably the SA CS Rob Letham TGO1
Best trigger: WC Classic SG with Hoag a very close second.
Ed Brown : Probably most attractrive, but not so great trigger, mushy, typical of EB triggers.
sights: all of these guns have good adjustable target sights & it's very hard to distinguish between them.
HTH
I hope that you find what you are looking for.
In the meantime, I would check out everything gun that you can get in your hands.

Last edited by Gary Wells; January 12, 2017 at 02:05 PM.
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Old January 13, 2017, 01:09 AM   #48
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I am thinking that I would like something in 45 that and off the shelf custom like a Wilson, Browne, Nighthawk, Guncrafters etc... I dont mind buying used as long as condition is VG. Can I get into any of these or other semi-customs around $2k-$2500?
Yes, you can. If you look around on Gun Broker, you can get NIB Wilson Combat or Ed Brown 1911s for about $2500. They won't be Classic Super Grades, but more along the lines of CQB.

At that price range, you can also find higher grades of LNIB Wilson Combat guns, etc.
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Old January 13, 2017, 01:20 AM   #49
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I love M1911A1 battle sidearms. Such history, much wow. Very yay handgun.
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Old January 13, 2017, 05:44 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Rogervzv
Well, it sounds to me like that's an opinion, not a statement of fact. If Baer really used state-of-the-art machining, their guns would not be hand-fitted and would not (as they do) require 500 rounds for break in. None of my Colts or Dan Wessons required such break-in.




Sorry Roger but your thoughts are very wrong. Les Baer 1911s don't require 500 rounds for break in. The vast majority of them work 100% right out of the box. Not really sure how because they are very tight. Very tight is a good thing as long as they are reliable which the vast majority of them are right out of the box. They come with enough CLP in the bag to last you a couple months.

Last edited by Evan Thomas; January 14, 2017 at 12:15 PM. Reason: ad hominem attack.
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