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Nighthawk 1911 45 Review

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Dan Webb
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Jon Eulette
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Post by Jon Eulette Sun Apr 10, 2022 11:45 pm

Had an opportunity to look at a Nighthawk 1911. Thought I’d share my observations. I realize it’s not a bullseye pistol, but considering it had a $4k price tag I figured I would give my opinion from gunsmith perspective. Finish was a DLC coating and was nicely done. Frame to slide fit was excellent. It had the disconnector ramp cut in the slide and functioned properly. Have seen several high end pistols recently that it was not done correctly and allowed the slide to hang up on the disconnector. Bushing did not require a bushing wrench to remove, but was fit excellent considering. The barrel to bushing fit was excellent. Rear of barrel hood had minimal gap less than 0.002” which was good. Sides of hood grossly over cut in my opinion. Upper barrel lugs poorly fit. They only filed them down deeply on each side and the top of the upper barrel lug from 10-2 making zero contact. When the barrel was placed in the slide with the bushing, the barrel could easily be rotated side to side; because upper lugs poorly fit and over cut sides of barrel hood. Bottom barrel lugs showed signs of decent slide stop pin contact. Slide easily went in and out of battery. Barrel link was proper length and was performing correctly. Trigger pull was hard crisp and approximately 5#, the liability trigger job. So based on the entire package/build, it probably shoots decent RR groups but would shoot unforgiving from hand.
So the pistol is a good candidate for a base gun to rebarrel and do a good trigger job on it 😂
My 2 cents.
Jon
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Post by OldShooter43 Mon Apr 11, 2022 5:33 am

I guess the "one gun, one gunsmith" approach works fine as long as that gunsmith knows how to perform ALL of the proper fitting work when producing a semi-custom 1911.

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Post by chiz1180 Mon Apr 11, 2022 7:44 am

Kinda like taking a show room cadillac and comparing it to a purpose built race car.
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Post by toddcfii Mon Apr 11, 2022 11:26 am

Thanks for the review Jon. I have wondered about accuracy/quality of these high end carry pistols like the Nighthawk etc. As for the race car to Cadillac comparison: I think a well built bullseye gun is like a race car that is easier to drive, more comfortable and probably longer lasting than a Cadillac
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Post by Dan Webb Mon Apr 11, 2022 12:29 pm

chiz1180 wrote:Kinda like taking a show room cadillac and comparing it to a purpose built race car.
I was going to say it's like a Formula One crew chief at the Chevy dealership looking at a 'Vette.

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Post by Froneck Mon Apr 11, 2022 12:59 pm

Shooting competition a Formula One Gun is required. Using less will keep you in the lower classes as most strive to be High Masters. Another mistake would be to get a top shooting Bullseye gun and putting a cheap red dot on it. Kinda like taking a Formula One car to a race with cheapest tires available at WalMart!
 A poorly fit barrel is not good! Being poorly fit will cause it to get worse in a short time. The looser it gets the looser it will become. So Jon is correct the $4K gun will need work to make it a Bullseye gun!


Last edited by Froneck on Mon Apr 11, 2022 1:42 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by Wobbley Mon Apr 11, 2022 1:32 pm

Dan Webb wrote:
chiz1180 wrote:Kinda like taking a show room cadillac and comparing it to a purpose built race car.
I was going to say it's like a Formula One crew chief at the Chevy dealership looking at a 'Vette.
Apples and oranges… the F1 car isn’t built to a price. 

I often shake my head in disbelief at the “engineering” in an F1 car compared to what is done everyday in commercial jet airplanes.  Especially when you consider that 737s are being built at the rate of 36-40 per month.
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Post by chiz1180 Mon Apr 11, 2022 3:12 pm

I was thinking more along the lines of a street derived race car, think typical street strip car or Trans am road race. F1 would be more along the lines of free/air pistol or rapidfire. 

You can buy a Nighthawk gun at many a gun dealer, not so much a brand new purpose built bullseye gun.
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Post by Sa-tevp Mon Apr 11, 2022 7:26 pm

Wobbley wrote:
Dan Webb wrote:
chiz1180 wrote:Kinda like taking a show room cadillac and comparing it to a purpose built race car.
I was going to say it's like a Formula One crew chief at the Chevy dealership looking at a 'Vette.
Apples and oranges… the F1 car isn’t built to a price. 

I often shake my head in disbelief at the “engineering” in an F1 car compared to what is done everyday in commercial jet airplanes.  Especially when you consider that 737s are being built at the rate of 36-40 per month.

My day job is commercial jet airplanes. F1 is cute.

Maybe Cabot Guns is almost PMA (Parts Manufacturer Approval). 

A PMA part is manufactured by a company with the approval of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The FAA PMA designation demonstrates the company’s authorization to produce aircraft parts that meet industry standards. As an aftermarket part, this label means the product has received adequate testing that meets FAA standards for airworthiness. It also ensures the parts have been manufactured according to approved procedures from the FAA. 
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Post by Merick Tue Apr 12, 2022 12:04 am

If you cut the barrel hood clean off, but fit the upper lugs correctly, would the barrel be able to rotate?

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Post by Jon Eulette Tue Apr 12, 2022 12:56 am

When fitting a barrel the hood is fit first, then the upper lugs. On a barrel with minimal hood side gaps the barrel can/will still rotate/rock in the slide. As the lugs are being fit to the slide as more barrel lug contact is made in the slide the rotation/rocking starts to fade away. When final fit it is solidly locked into the slide lugs. I have fit barrels that had what I consider less than ideal hood fit and could still get the rotation/rocking to go away after fitting. But I have never tried removing entire hood. Suppose I could on a bulged barrel I have laying around…..
No time for that now.
Jon
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