Review of Rock Island Armory Tactical Compact

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Review of Rock Island Armory Tactical Compact - Shooter - 1-41.jpg

I purchased my RIA Tactical Compact mainly because I carry a full size 1911 daily and wanted something more compact and comfortable for concealed carry but yet I wanted all the controls to be the same as my day to day carry piece. So I began my search of local gun shops and ran across the RIA since I've read a decent amount of good reviews I figured I would save a hit to my wallet and purchase it instead of an EMP or something similar which can be twice the price.

As soon as I bought the gun I knew that I would be swapping the original grips out for some black VZ ETC grips, The original grips were way to bulky and made the gun seem like you were holding a bottle instead of a 1911. Before the VZ grips arrived I went to the range and fired a few test rounds to see if it was as good shooting as I hoped it was.

I was shooting Remington Golden Sabers and I had a bulk pack of PMC to shoot, the magazine's used was the ones that came with the gun, and I purchased a Wilson Combat 7rd mag. Total amount of rounds fired was approximately 325 and the gun never hiccuped, I was thoroughly impressed with my purchase. The gun is accurate if you do your part, your not going to be driving nails at a hundred yards but its more than easy to be on target at 50 feet.

As far as carry it is very comfortable in a Galco Silhouette High Ride Holster Galco holsters; Holsters; Gun holster, pistol holsters, western holsters, shoulder holsters, leather holster and Glock holsters and it is extremely easy to conceal, doesn't print on your clothing like you might think.

There aren't to many things that I can complain about with this gun however the biggest is the sights, I like them but they are not night sights. They are a nice combat style sight, however they lack the ability to be seen in the dark. I asked my gunsmith if he could replace them with some Meprolights but he said with the style of cut that is used by RIA he would have to machine the slide to fit the new sights. I know to some people that isn't a big deal, it's just not something I want to get into at this point. It goes with the old saying why fix what isn't broke. I do not know if all RIA slides are like mine so don't think all of their slides will need machined, from some of the other reviews I've read it seems that people have replaced the factory sights without to much hassle so I don't know if that is just something with their tactical compact model or not. At the time of me writing this I am unaware of any website or literature that offers specifications for the Tactical Compact. So I do not know for sure what the sight cut is, I believed it to be Novak but according to my gunsmith it is not.

All in all I feel as though this is a great gun for the money (I paid $500 locally) and wouldn't hesitate to own another RIA they are a reliable and fun gun and they make a great first step into the vast and wonderful world of 1911's.

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December 31, 2011  •  03:36 AM
Nice review and I am glad you are happy with your new firearm.
December 31, 2011  •  12:14 PM
looks nice good luck with it
January 1, 2012  •  04:59 PM
Bought my first 1911 about 2 weeks ago. I got the full size match grade rock island with ghost hammer, trigger and ambo safety and I love this gun.
January 13, 2012  •  09:16 AM
I just bought a RIA 1911a1 Military model for my Cowboy Wild Bunch shooting.
I've been told that when Lead flat nose are used that miss feeds or stove pipes happen, I didn't have any YET.
Has anyone had a problem with lead bullets?
The gun is a nice gun for the price, I only don't like (3) things with it and first is the Roll marks on the gun along with the BATF registration numbers (too light) and the small molded in front sight (I can't change it) and no night sites.
August 16, 2012  •  06:46 PM
Just shot my new in box RIA 1911-A1 CS over a 2 week period and had no problems except the loss of day light. I was shooting tight groups at 20 yards. It also felt good carrying it in a mid back holster. Nice peace and I would suggest getting one if you have the chance too.