Rock Island Armory 1911 Review | A Great Pistol That Went Under the Radar

In an industry saturated with various firearm manufacturers, Rock Island Armory stands out as a prominent and revered name due to its iconic 1911 pistol. The “1911” was given its name because the pistol was adopted by the U.S. Army in the year 1911. This legendary firearm has become synonymous with excellence, showcasing a perfect blend of historical significance and enduring design. Renowned for their unwavering commitment to producing firearms of unparalleled quality while maintaining affordability, Rock Island Armory has solidified its position as a trusted brand among passionate gun enthusiasts and seasoned professionals alike. 

Like in all my reviews, I will meticulously examine the Rock Island Armory 1911's notable features, exceptional performance, and overall experience provided by this iconic pistol.

Rock Island Armory 1911 Review

Designed to cater to the needs of both firearm carry enthusiasts and avid range shooters, the Armory 1911 has garnered immense popularity for its versatility and reliability. By delving into its intricacies, I aim to shed light on what sets this firearm apart from its competitors like Ruger SR1911 or Springfield Armory Mil Spec, highlighting the factors that contribute to its growing reputation as a top choice within the firearms community.

Product Specifications

  • Type: Semi-automatic pistol

  • Caliber: .45 ACP

  • Capacity: 8 rounds

  • Barrel Length: 5 inches

  • Overall Length: 8.75 inches

  • Weight: 2.47 pounds (unloaded)

  • Sights: Fixed GI style rear sight, fixed front sight

  • Safety: Grip safety, manual thumb safety

  • Grips: Wood grips

  • Finish: Parkerized

  • Accessory Rail: No

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Now that we have a clear understanding of the basic specifications, let's explore this gun in greater detail.

Design and Ergonomics

Rock Island Armory has managed to capture the essence of the original 1911 design while incorporating modern features for enhanced functionality. The classic profile, combined with the parkerized finish, gives the pistol a rugged and old-school appeal. The wood grips provide a traditional touch and offer a secure and comfortable hold, promoting a tight grip and reducing the chances of slippage during firing.

Performance and Reliability

One of the standout features of the Armory 1911 is its reliability. Whether you're using it as a firearm carry option or an accurate range gun, the Armory 1911 is known for its consistent and reliable performance. The pistol's simple design and solid construction contribute to its overall reliability, making it a favorite among gun enthusiasts and professionals.

The ambidextrous safety ensures that both left-handed and right-handed shooters can operate and shoot the 1911 45 ACP pistol with ease. The thumb safety adds an extra layer of security, requiring a firm hold to engage the trigger. These safety features combine to provide peace of mind, especially for those considering the Armory 1911 as a handgun for home-defense.

A handgun

RIA is my choice for 1911 pistols. I also find it ridiculous that people pay high prices for a 1911 with a fancy name that does not shoot any better than my Rocks. Oddly, I do not have a GI model, just everything else except a 6″ 10mm.

Other Rock Island guns are also innately fantastic, but they don't get the same love and attention other guns do, but I like breaking mine out every now and then.

The gun is still quite a fun gun to shoot with a lot of memories packed into it, especially now that I've gotten it broken in and it fires right. The term GI 1911 refers to a very simple gun without the modern accouterments of most production 1911s. The magazine catch, slide lock, and hammer are all textured and slip-proof for easy engagement. The beavertail on the gun is short and thin and recoil makes it bite hard. It's just long enough to avoid though.

Range Performance and Accuracy

When it comes to range performance, the Armory 1911 delivers a satisfying shooting experience. The crisp trigger pull ensures a smooth and predictable break, allowing for precise shot placement.

The pistol's GI-style sights, though small, offer adequate visibility for shorter ranges. However, shooters looking for improved sight options for longer ranges may need to consider aftermarket upgrades. The magazine release is a small round button that engages tightly and releases the magazine without issue. I haven't had light primer strikes, misfires, or failures to extract or eject.

I have put a couple thousand rounds through it with maybe 1 or 2 hiccups, and that was when I used cheap mags. The only thing I had to replace was the recoil spring, and I've had to do it a few times since the shorter barrel 1911's eat up the springs faster.

Overall, I'd have to say I'm thoroughly satisfied with the pistol. If you are spoiled by modern pistols, then you may find the Rock Island Armory G.I. style 1911 a little lacking.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is the gun suitable for concealed carry?

Yes, the Armory 1911's compact size, reliability, and comfortable grip make it an excellent option for firearm carry.

Can the gun handle hollow-point ammunition?

Absolutely! The Armory 1911 is designed to handle various types of ammunition, including hollow points, ensuring its versatility in self-defense situations.

Does the Rock Island Armory 1911 require a break-in period?

While some pistols may benefit from a break-in period, the Armory 1911 is known for its out-of-the-box reliability. However, it's always a good practice to familiarize yourself with any firearm before relying on it for personal defense.

Can left-handed shooters operate the Rock Island Armory 1911 comfortably?

Yes, the ambidextrous safety allows for easy operation by left-handed shooters. Additionally, grip safety ensures that the pistol can only be fired with a firm grip, regardless of hand dominance.

Are there aftermarket sight options available for the Rock Island Armory 1911?

Yes, there are several aftermarket sight options available that can enhance the sight picture and improve target acquisition for longer ranges.

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Final Words

In conclusion, the Armory 1911 is a reliable and versatile pistol that caters to the needs of both gun enthusiasts and professionals. Its timeless design, combined with modern features, makes it a viable option for a concealed carry handgun, house protection, and range shooting.

While it may have a few limitations, such as the absence of an accessory rail and small sights, the Armory 1911's overall performance, reliability, and affordable price point make it a great pistol for any shooter.

Whether you're a seasoned firearms writer, a gun enthusiast, or a Marine machine gunner, the Armory 1911 is a firearm that delivers on its promises. With its bare-bones yet reliable construction, it is a testament to the enduring appeal of the classic 1911 design.

So, if you're in the market for a real handgun that has stood the test of time, look no further than the Armory 1911. With this pistol, you'll experience the thrill of sending rounds downrange while owning a piece of firearms history. I highly recommend this gun and I hope this gun review brought you closer to purchasing just what you want.

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