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Rock Island Armory 1911

An owners review by David R. Johnson

Finally took possession of the new Rock. Ordered from my dealer on the 10th of Feb, Sarco took 13 days to fill my order from order to delivery. $291 shipped and $10 for the transfer.

Took her home, cleaned it, lubed the rails and hit the range (wife made me eat in between).

Upon disassembly I found few if any metal shavings no excessive lube and a tight fit. No blemishes on finish and the grips match in grain and color.

First 9 shots with the supplied Novak Mag of Winchester White Box at 21′.

The first three mags of WWB one fed by a McCormick Shooting Star ($8 at the gunshow, new), zero malfunctions.

Coupla mags of WWB (Novak then Shooting Star) rapid fire at 50′ just for Kicks. Just waited for the “flash sight picture” and let her rip.

The only issue so far was that the shooting star does not fall free yet, it may work in or I may work it in. I have a meggar on order and I might call Ivan for another Novak if not too pricey. Been looking at the Power Mags from Midway as they are on sale too.

Now for the (somewhat) bad news. Opened the box of UMC and loaded up. It grouped OK, but we have issues.

As you may have read, I had 2 stovepipes and one misfire (hit it twice).

The stove pipes were not the “lock slide and shake” type. I couldn’t even drop the mag (one with each magazine BTW). They were wedged in the feed lips and against the ejection port and chamber. I had to use my brass poker/screwstick and most of my fingers to manipulate them out. I then got spooked and launched another 4 mags of WWB downrange without incident…..exhale. I ran the rest of the UMC out to eradicate them from inventory without notable problems, but the failure to fire was enough to turn me off of this brand…again. I had problems with their .380 ammo with my Bersa and that thing eats everything.

I have read many posts concerning hammer/slide bite and I did not experience that, although there was some faint tingling in the web of my hand. Fortunately the smell of gunpowder in the evening has an anesthetic effect on me. Upon investigation I found the grip safety has some sharp edges and I broke most of those with some (very) fine sandpaper. There is one spot where the safety pivots into the frame that I will have to remove with the safety out of the pistol.

For the second session I added some nail polish to the front sight and a line of white out on the rear to assist in sighting. It matches the setup on my automag and made enough of a difference to put off the sight changeover, maybe indefinitely. I took her out again today and ran a box of Wolfs though, no malfunctions, nice grouping and minimal flesh irritation. I have no pics as we shot in a buddy’s backyard and it was a large communal target. I will now begin recycling the brass to work up a nice cheap handload.

To add my final assessment in short, I am very satisfied with the pistol in every way and encourage those on the fence to “get a piece of the Rock” Island, that is.