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 Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)

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hkssr20det
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PostSubject: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Mon Dec 10, 2007 1:30 pm

Tokyo Marui Colt M1911A1

Released on the heels of their widely popular Hi Capa 5.1 double stack competition style .45, here we have Tokyo Marui’s take on the classic WWII side arm the Colt M1911A1. Possible the most famous hand gun in the world (arguably since there is also the Colt Peacemaker), the standard 1911 has been in use around the world for almost 100 years.

Here Tokyo Marui has replicated the second version of the gun the A1 model used by the US Military in WWII and beyond. Distinguishable by the rounded main spring housing and short trigger, this is a classic, down and dirty combat set up. Fixed sights, with a duck-tailed grip safety, this is “The” standard 1911.

Package:

The gun comes packaged in an olive drab box covered with Colt trades and facts on the real steel model. Unfortunately I live in the US, so mine has been rendered import safe by liberal use of a black sharpie, which really detracts from the rather handsome and purposeful packaging.

Inside we find a thick packet of safety materials, instruction manual, test targets and other assorted papers written in Japanese. The gun is held firmly in place on a tasteful mat of fabric with the magazine held firmly in place in it’s own slot (early versions were not so securely packaged, with the magazine having the unfortunate habit of flying loose and scratching the gun in shipment). The bbs, barrel bushing tool and barrel plug are secured in a little box, made to look like a box of .45 ammo. TM has really gone overboard on making the packaging really look special, a detail I appreciate after the stark boxes Western Arms come in. Also underneath the fabric is a very secure cut-out into layers of card board, rather than the usual Styrofoam packaging in the other Maruis.

Alas this seems to be a one off, since the G17 and Sig P226 Chrome have gone back to the generic TM packaging of black Styrofoam, but the Type 89 and M14 aegs do follow this packaging.




Gun:

Out of the box the gun really looks great. With an ABS slide and frame is a pretty good approximation of a parkerized finish and plastic bake-lite look grips, the gun really has the appearance of the gun it is modeled off of. With no seem lines anywhere; this is easily the most well finished gun from TM. The controls are all metal (but the sights are ABS), while not parkerized like the frame and slide, they are a more subdued, mottle black color.

Picking it up, the gun is not as heavy as a full size Western Arms 1911, at 800 grams it is over 100 grams lighter than a heavy weight model, but heavier than the Magna Tech line. In the hand the M1911A1 is a very well balanced gun (thanks to the weights in the grips) which continues to remain well balanced even with the mag out of the gun. While the grips look the part, they feel a little too plasticky for my taste.

Fit and finish on the gun is great, very solid slide to frame fitting with almost no rattle. The mag sits securely in the well, and drops free when the mag catch is hit. For me the rounded back strap (main spring housing) is very comfortable with the thin-ness of the grip, but others might find it a bit odd. The feel is different from the more aggressive angle found in Glocks, with a more upright grip angle. I prefer the feel of the 1911, but if you find the Glock to be a perfect feel, then you might feel out of place with a 1911.






Trades:

This particular model has full trades. Crisp and clear, they are easily recognizable including the Colt Stallion. Also the frame is covered with proofing marks and other assorted insignias stamped on military issue weapons. I don’t know how many are real, but the gun certainly looks the part when you can get a model without the trades raped like many Maruis are in the US. I think the clearness and quality of the trades are another selling point for the Marui over the KSC (with it’s commercial trades) or the trade-less KWA model. Not quite up to Western Arms quality, but close.






Features:

One of the failings of the tradition M1911Al design are the meager sights. Barely big enough to see in direct sunlight, they are not great for target acquisition, but do provide the bare necessities of shooting straight. If it wasn’t for the natural feel of pointing a 1911, the gun wouldn’t make a good combat weapon, but the natural accuracy of the TM combined with the time proven design of the 1911 combine to make a useable shooting platform. You can see how small the front sight is, since it isn’t in view in the shot below.



The 1911 has two safeties built in. Just like the real steel it has a grip safety, that only allows the hammer to drop when you have a firm grip on the pistol. The second safety is a hammer lock safety, which can only be engaged when the hammer is cocked. This allows for the traditional “cocked and locked” carry the 1911 is famous for.



Mag

With a capacity of 26rds, the mag is super slim (being a single stack) and fills quickly and efficiently through the bottom located fill valve. The mag holds just about enough gas to shoot 26 rounds, or less depending on how fast you shoot. The great part about the Marui mag is that you can load through the top feed lips, or you can pull the guide all the way to the bottom and pour bbs in through the bottom opening. Double stacked by design allows for the high capacity, but the single stack shape only allows for limited gas capacity.



Hop Up

One of the greatest features of the current generation of TM GBBs is the fantastic hop up unit. Much better than both KSC and WA, it is easily set by field stripping the gun and then rotating a dial on the bottom of the hop up unit. Counter clockwise adds more hop, clockwise for less, it is simple and easy to set the hop for accuracy, range and bb weight. While simple in design, the Marui hop up is consistent and stable. Once you set it correctly, feel free to forget about it until you change bb weights or range.




Field Strip

The gun field strips the same as the real steel. First you line the slide lock up with the round notch (the second notch looking from the front of the slide to the back). Push the slide lock out from the frame, and then you can push the entire slide off the front of the gun. This would be traditional field strip, which allows you access to the hop up.

To further strip the gun down, first remove the recoil spring and recoil spring guide through the inside of the slide. The recoil spring guide sits on top of a post on the bottom of the hop up unit, so you will need to compress the spring with the guide to get it off the perch first. Then pull the bushing. Next rotate the barrel bushing counter clockwise about 70 degrees until you can pull it. Then push the inner barrel unit as far forward in the outer barrel as you can, then push the entire unit out through the front of the slide.






Shooting

I can’t comment on the performance on 134A, since I refuse to run this gun on anything but green gas. Many people will tell you that since this is an ABS Japanese gun, nothing but 134A should be run through it, but let me tell you that this gun is built to shoot hard, fast and accurate. Run green gas with now worries of the slide giving up on you. I should give one warning, yes the gun is not “designed” for anything stronger than 134A, but I run mine on green and have no qualms about recommending others to do the same.

Kick is great, not as hard as a Western Arms, but the accuracy makes up for it. Easily the best shooting Tokyo Marui made now (which means probably ever). With strong kick, and a fast action, the 1911 is a perfect skirmish weapon, except for the pitiful gas capacity. By short loading to 22-24 shots, you will never run out of gas before you run out of bbs.

Chrono Results

Using green gas and .20 Excel BBs over 10 shots at 70 degrees F:

Avg: 304.40 fps

1 – 304
2 – 311
3 – 310
4 – 308
5 – 305
6 – 304
7 – 303
8 – 302
9 – 295
10 – 298

Here we see why people talk about the quality and consistency of the TM blowback system. You can see the very small deviation between shots, with no cool down. The drop in fps at the end really has to do more with the gas running down.

Extremely accurate the TM M1911 is easily my most accurate gun full stop. It can consistently shoot sub 2” groups at 10 meters, probably only held up by the shooter. Coupled with the ultra consistent TM Hop Up, the range has been reported out to 100ft.

Summation

Tokyo Marui has built a true contender for best GBB with the M1911. Quality and finish of a Western Arms, plus the best hop up in the business adds up to a perfect 1911 which has the looks and performance to match. I admit to having a soft spot for the 1911, but if you are looking for either a strong stock gun, or the basis for a full build you can’t go wrong with starting with the TM M1911.

Pros:
Build
Power
Accuracy
Correct Trades
Unlimited Upgrade Potential and Aftermarket Support

Cons:
Limited Gas Capacity
Terrible Sights (though accurate to the model)
Rather light weight compared to a WA HW



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ilovemybike
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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Mon Dec 10, 2007 9:12 pm

This was awesome! Thanks alot!

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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Mon Dec 10, 2007 11:07 pm

nice review man. Are the TM 1911 mags compatible with the WE 1911 pistol?
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hkssr20det
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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Tue Dec 11, 2007 2:14 am

My WE Tactical (for testing purposes only) will be arriving today or tomorrow. I can give you a better answer then, but from what I hear no they are not.
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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Tue Dec 11, 2007 6:31 am

hkssr20det wrote:
My WE Tactical (for testing purposes only) will be arriving today or tomorrow. I can give you a better answer then, but from what I hear no they are not.

alright, well thanks and let me know.
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PxRxSxRX
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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Tue Dec 11, 2007 11:31 am

I've heard they can be with minor modification. Namely the rubber peice on the top of the mag. Apparently you just order a replacement from WE and install it on the TM mag.

I haven't tried it yet thoug, so don't hold me responsable if it doesn't work... but if someone tries it let me know. I'll likely try it once my cash flow improves.

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hkssr20det
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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Tue Dec 11, 2007 11:51 am

I haven't tried them yet but here is the picture comparison. They are not the same magazine.

TM Mag on top
WE Mag on the bottom




Edit: The mags do not work. The TM mag does not clear the metal rod which is on the rear of the frame rails, the TM has a rod as well, but the WE is too long.

The WE mag does not fit into the magwell of my gun, but I am using a PGC metal body, so I can't say for sure that it is the case for a stock gun.
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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Tue Dec 11, 2007 12:53 pm

So does it seem possible to mod the rod that is getting in the way in the WE? I'm willing to take some chances if it will allow me some more shots per mag.

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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Tue Dec 11, 2007 2:04 pm

Well thanks for letting me know hkssr20det
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PostSubject: Re: Tokyo Marui - Colt M1911A1 (GBB)   Tue Dec 11, 2007 2:53 pm

PxRxSxRX wrote:
So does it seem possible to mod the rod that is getting in the way in the WE? I'm willing to take some chances if it will allow me some more shots per mag.

You might get a few more shots per mag, but I don't think it will help that much. You could easily mill the post down some to clear the Marui mag, but I wonder if it will make the WE mags unstable then. Plus I can't get the mag in, so I can't tell if the valve knocker will actually actuate the valve on it.

I would curious to see though if it doe work. WE mags are notorious for leaking.
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