To PARA or not to PARA ???
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Old 04-29-2010, 07:11 PM   #1
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Default To PARA or not to PARA ???

I'm thinking about getting a PARA Ordinance GI Expert.
I'm thinking about getting a pair of PARA. One for me, one for the wife.

What are the reasons why I should or should not buy the PARA GI Expert.

  • I love the price (I otherwise would buy only 1 kimber, not thrilled about external extractor)
  • I Love that it already has the dovetail on the slide.
  • The website had sold me on the quality mfg.
I wanted to hear your expert opinions.
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Old 04-29-2010, 07:17 PM   #2
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They are a decent entry-level 1911 - nothing special about them. I have friends with them (I've shot them) and I grade them as OK. The Kimber with external extractor must be an oldie as they only did that epic fail for a short time if memory serves...

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Old 04-29-2010, 07:19 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gloves View Post
I'm thinking about getting a PARA Ordinance GI Expert.
I'm thinking about getting a pair of PARA. One for me, one for the wife.

What are the reasons why I should or should not buy the PARA GI Expert.

  • I love the price (I otherwise would buy only 1 kimber, not thrilled about external extractor)
  • I Love that it already has the dovetail on the slide.
  • The website had sold me on the quality mfg.
I wanted to hear your expert opinions.
That photo is the gun?

There's no external extractor.

It has a commander hammer, not a GI.

It has no bevertail, only a GI spur.

You will HATE the GI sights.
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Old 04-29-2010, 07:26 PM   #4
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"I will hate the sights" I can change the sites right?
The stock sights are 3 white dots. I think that's better than most base models that come with solid color iron, including the Custom II by Kimber.

Do I want the full bever tail? They offer that for more $

I'm looking for bang for buck. So if this costs $525 ish, can you think of a better option?

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Old 04-29-2010, 07:41 PM   #5
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Yup, a Rock Island Tactical model. Costs less and has the bells & whistles most folks want. Do a search here and you'll see a number of threads about them. What "we" want in a 1911 may not be what "you" want in a 1911. I will tell you that it's generally cheaper to buy the gun with the features you want versus upgrading. For example the sights - not all dovetails are the same and many manufacturers use their own proprietary cut - which limits your sight selections...

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Old 04-29-2010, 11:25 PM   #6
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NGIB,
Rock Island is the model that I tried at the range that made me decide I wanted a 1911.
I don't want top of the line. I want a price I can beat up and abuse a little.

It should also use standard parts that are upgradeable (ie sights) / barrel.
The Rock Island I shot then, another rock island I analyzed had fixed iron sights (no dots)

You know I'm not positive where Para is made (although, website is para-usa)
I heard that Rock Island is in the Philippines

Q: Why do I want a full beaver tail? I think they look cool but why is the beaver tail practical? (I'm a n00b aka F.N.G.)

Thanks for your input thus-far!

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Old 04-29-2010, 11:31 PM   #7
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Yup, the RIAs are made in the PI - which is of no concern as their customer service here in the US is second to none. The RIA Tactical I speak of has dovetailed sights front & rear and I believe they are standard Novak cuts.

A beavertail allows you to have a higher grip on the gun which aids shooting accurately a bunch. While you could find this yourself (had you done a search as I recommended) here's a link to an RIA Tactical...

Rock Island 1911 .45ACP Tactical Handgun Part #AC-RI1911TAC

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Old 04-30-2010, 12:53 AM   #8
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I've not fired the GI Expert. From the looks of it the weapon does appear to be a decent one and reviews have been positive. Para Ord makes some of the best weapons I've had the chance to use. I own two right now and one I carry daily (LTC).The Sights on the GI Expert are comparable to the ones on a Springfoeld Mil Spec. Except that I believe the front sight on the Para is a dovetail mount rather than the tenon mount of the Springer.

The RIA Tactical is something to look at. THe name is a little deceiving. THe weapon really is more of a loaded model with the exception of maybe the barrel, bbl bushing, and trigger. Most people think of things like rails to mount other goodies when thinking of a tactical weapon. But, the RIA is a fine weapon for the monry you're going to put down. The ambi safety while often sought after I honestly do not think is all that big a deal unless you shoot left handed (like me). But the beaver tail safety is a lot more comfortable to shoot. Take a GI Springfield or even the standard RIA to the range for a box or two of ammo. You will see the difference most likely within the first 25 rounds. Those GI spurs can be a little uncomfortable over time. So maybe the beaver tail is worth looking at in that light. Some people have no issue with the spur and the OP might be one of them. Only one way to really tell. And that's trigger time with both types.

Both the RIA and the Para are built on standard 1911 designs. So buying aftermarket parts to maintain or upgrade will be pretty easy. Para Ordnance is a Canadian company. Though I believe that they have something in Pineville NC. I am not 100% on thew NC thing. I'm sure someone can answer more about the company's geography.

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Old 04-30-2010, 02:02 AM   #9
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Para WAS a Canadian company. They are moving their ops to NC as we speak. Just got a Para LDA, very impressed by workmanship.

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Old 05-01-2010, 02:08 AM   #10
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I just got done watching some stress-testing YouTube videos for the
PARA GI Expert. It boosts my confidence for the GI Expert.


My friend has turned me onto yet another manufacture; Auto-Ordinance.

It seems every day I find a new brand of 1911. Will it ever end? I'm just trying
to find the right gun for me at the right cost. What do you guys think about
this brand?

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