View Full Version : Thinking about purchasing Series 80
7th February 2005, 12:59
I am new to the Colt 45 1911 wolrd and have been thinking about purchasing a gun. I have found a Mark IV Series 80 gun that is supposedly in new condition (less than 20 rounds fired but no box or paperwork, blue finish, fixed sight) for $400. Is this a good price?
Also, i was recently informed by a very knowledgable individual to not purchase an 80 series because as he put it "they are junk". He recommended the 70 series or earlier becuase the tolerances are better and the overall materials are of higher quality. He indicated he hasn't had problems with the 70 series or earlier but the 80's have given him problems. Is this true and what are your thoughts?
Any help would be appreciated! Thanks in advance.
7th February 2005, 13:31
I'll wager that your knowledgeable individual's chief objection (real or imagined) to the Series 80 Colt is the firing pin safety. I have a Series 80 LW Commander .45 that has given me absolutely NO problems, although detail stripping the slide can be a pain in the behind.
Over the years, Colt, like any firearms manufacturer, has had ups and downs in their quality control. Whether a Series 80 pistol is better or worse than a Series 70 pistol is strictly a matter of personal opinion. There have been good and bad examples of both. You pay your money and take your choice.
$400.00 sounds like a fair price to me.
7th February 2005, 17:57
Thanks for the reply. I figure if I am going to buy a model 1911 it has to be a Colt. The knowledgable individual I noted earlier is a very good competive shooter, and maybe his needs are far greater than mine. I appreciate any responses as I am still learning about these guns. I have just shot shotguns and rifles before and am just starting to explore handguns.
7th February 2005, 18:55
I have 2 series 80 Colts out of the 5 1911's i own. They will be the last the leave my gun safe. I like them very much. They shoot well never jam and i just plain like them. Like one of the above letters said you can get bad in anything. My last one i purchased a few months ago had maybe a few boxes of ammo shot through it. Looked like out of the box new. I paid 600 for it. Mine are both stainless but i would buy a blued one just as fast. Stainless can gaul if not kept lubricated and the blued ones are more forgiving on that part. I would go for it.
8th February 2005, 08:43
I've got a Series 80 Officer's model 45ACP that has been a problem since I bought it. I bought it used in 1993 or so, and I've determined it is a 1982 or so production gun. These Officers models have a bad reputation for having spec problems, from what I've been told and read. On the other hand, I have a 1989 Series 80 Government model that I bought new. It has never had a single problem and is more accurate with over-the-counter FMJ than I would have expected. It is the favorite of my three 1911s, but my Series 70 Gold Cup keeps trying to take its place as top-dog.....$400 for a Colt in that kind of shape sounds like a pretty good deal to me. Most of the Colt 1911s I see these days are $600-$800 used. You can always check the going prices of the guns through www.gunbroker.com or www.gunsamerica.com for reference.
8th February 2005, 10:34
For that kinda money it would be difficult to go wrong, even if the pistol would need some TLC. I have three Series 80s out of nine 1911s, two of them are early Series 80s (1984 & 1987) that really get bad mouthed by some, never had a problem with either. They're equally loved. ;)
8th February 2005, 19:00
I have a Colt's Officer ACP in Series 80 (no revolvers for me, thanks) and it's been perfectly reliable. I did install a Clark reverse recoil spring plug as a preventive maintenance measure.
I have no problems with the Series 80 firing pin interlock and prefer a firing pin lock in many respects. Belt and suspenders approach I guess.
I'm not worried about my pre-Series 70 pistols firing when I drop them nor should I worry about the sear suddenly self destructing and releasing the hammer. :eek:
8th February 2005, 19:00
Thanks for all of the replies. I was dead set on the series 80 until a few days ago, now i think i am dead set again. Can't wait to get it and fire a few rounds.
9th February 2005, 09:48
Go for it Car. It's a smoking price, and as stated previously, even if it needs some TLC, it's still a good price.
That being said, I personally owned 2 Series 80 1911s. #1 was a SS Combat Commander. It never did run right, even after 2 trips back to the factory. FTF, FTE...I sold it for a loss to a guy who thought he could get it running. I don't know what he did to it, as I lost touch with him years ago.
#2 was a Ser 80 Enhanced 5" chambered in .40 S&W. It had the same FTF, FTE problems, but with a new twist--slide would lock back with rounds still in the magazine, and would happen no matter what ammo was used, after plunger spring was replaced, and even when fired from a Ransom Rest. This one also made 2 trips back to the factory. It worked fine after the 2nd trip, but by that time, I was pretty upset and had no confidence in it. I vowed never to buy a Horsey again. I still have 1911s, just made by Les Baer. I recently 'amended' my vow to allow Colt, but still exclude the Ser 80. I know of MANY MANY MANY people who have had very good experiences with their series 80 pistols. They aren't all bad, and I think I'm just an unlucky SOB. (FWIW, my Para Ord slide is a Series 80 copy and it works flawlessly)
9th February 2005, 11:15
Welcome to the forums Dan/carguy.
I have the same gun, or nearly the same. I bought a Mark IV enhanced series 80 govt as my first 1911. I bought mine for about $200 more than what you are seeing and consider myself lucky that I got a good deal. My gun was LNIB, supposedly 50rds or less through it. I now have about 300rds through it, and so far has functioned flawlessly. I do believe that the sights are off, and will get that fixed soon.
If I were you, I would jump all over this one. By the way, I see you are in Berwyn, I live fairly close by... Westmont. Where did you find this gem? Where do you shoot around here? I frequent both Midwest in Lyons and Rinks in Lemont/Homer township.
9th February 2005, 18:42
Yes I do live in Berwyn, not too far from Westmont. I found this gun through my father, he knows a guy that is selling it. Apparently he has 6 1911's and just doesn't use this one. I typically shoot at my dad's farm just north of the Quad Cities (Davenport IA). I usually shoot trap with my shotgun. However I will be looking for a good shooting range around the Chicagoland area to shoot the 1911 when I get it, how are the ranges you go to?
Unfortunately I won't be able to purchase the gun until early March, it is in the quad cities and I won't be back there until then. Go figure, too much work.
9th February 2005, 21:09
i think you will be glad you did, i was looking at other 1911's almost set on a kimber tle untill i stumbled across an series 80 ss combat comander. i was sold on it, went to the range and it ran flawless. its had mods but i think i would have bought it anyways, i say go for it!!
9th February 2005, 21:53
Ahh, worth the hassle for a FTF deal... but must be torture waiting that long!
Midwest in Lyons is pretty good, but they don't allow FMJ ammo. The back of the bullet must be encased due to indoor lead restrictions. So, either TMJ or JHP's are needed. Rinks would be a farther drive for you, but is easily accessible down I-55. You can shoot anything there, but it isn't a fancy range by any means. Out towards Joliet/Plainfield is MegaSports. Located on Hwy 30, west of I-55 in Plainfield. A really nice place, but I do not know if they have any ammo restrictions.
PM or email me if you need more directions etc. Gimme a holler if the guy in Quad cities has anymore Colts he's tired of!
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