LDA vs. SA &/or PARA vs. Kimber
This is a discussion on LDA vs. SA &/or PARA vs. Kimber within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I have had a Taurus PT-111 9mm mil Pro for a short while and I am ready to move to something better. Don't get me ...
June 12th, 2006 12:54 PM
LDA vs. SA &/or PARA vs. Kimber
I have had a Taurus PT-111 9mm mil Pro for a short while and I am ready to move to something better. Don't get me wrong, the PT-111 is a good weapon, she's a little fat around the hips but she is dependable. Not bad for a 300.00 weapon. I like the controls because I can reach all of them with my shooting (right) hand. It's DAO with a striker system (no hammer).
I am torn between ParaOrd or Kimber. I have recent shot (100 rounds) through a rented Kimber Ultra CDP II 3" .45acp. As you may have read in other threads from me, I was VERY VERY impressed and fell in love with it. So know the questions:
1. I like Kimber because they are US. Is there any problems with sending weapons to Para because they are in Canada ? Any problems with customs or any other authority ??
2. Is there any problem with ambidextrous thumb safety while concealing ??
3. Is LDA really that great ?? Only thing I see with LDA is a longer trigger pull and not much of a safety advantage over SA. Am I wrong about LDA ?? (Yes, I read the other thread about LDA) For all intensive purposes the SA and LDA are the same and have the same safety mechanisims. They both have a hammer, grip saftey, and thumb safety. If the safety comes off, they both need about the same trigger pull poundage and the grip safety depressed to go off in the holster. I don't see the advantage of LDA. I am not so concerned about SA and cocked and locked any more.
4. On average it seems that Kimber is about 300.00 more than Para. Don't get me wrong, any amount of money is worth keeping my life. Is the 300.00 more average REALLY worth it ?? Why ?? I have no doubt Kimber makes quality wepaons as does Para.
Thanks for any info.
Last edited by kansas_shooter; June 14th, 2006 at 06:16 PM.
June 12th, 2006 01:06 PM
Not everyone likes the LDA i don't so choice is simple for me the kimber over the para
June 12th, 2006 01:58 PM
When I was looking for another pistol I looked hard at the small Para with the LDA and several single actions including the Kimbers, all in .45caliber. The Para trigger pull was very smooth and light for a double action. However, I decided to go with the all stainless Detonics USA CombatMaster. I don't believe you'd have any problems shipping to Canada if need be. As to the ambi safety. Some previous postings have stated disengagement has happened, but I'm sure this is rare. Either of your choices would be good. Guess I'm partial to the 1911 types though. Keep us posted as to your decision and do a range report after the purchase.
The power of the future is in its ability to inspire the present.
June 12th, 2006 02:31 PM
I have had three Paras (two LDAs), and three Kimbers.
I don't have any Paras anymore, but still have every Kimber.
Para quality just varies too much. You might get a really good gun, and you might get a bad gun. If many people resond to your post, you may see that pattern- some people will say there's have been fine, others who say they had a lot of trouble.
I had both extremes.
After owning two LDAs, my opinion is that they are for LEOs who would like to carry a 1911, but regulations prohibit single action guns. They are an ideal solution for that. Beyond that, I see little use.
Kimber is not without fault, like any other manufacturer. Almost any problem I've heard of with Kimbers is fixable. I've seen and heard Paras that needed things that were a lot harder to correct- tolerance issues, holes in slightly wrong locations, etc.
If you get a Kimber, check for a couple of things:
1) Extractor Type.
They went to an internal extractor a couple of years ago. I have one, and it's been flawless for 4600 rds. But, there are a lot of complaints about them. Kimber has (wisely, I think) bit the bullet and started to return to the original design with internal extractor. Odds are that if you get an external extractor, it will be fine. But if you have a choice of two Kimbers- one with internal extractor, and one with external extractor- that are otherwise the same, you might take the internal extractored gun instead.
2)Series II Firing Pin Block.
Some call it a firing pin "safety", but I refuse to call it a safety. Any Kimber with a "II" in it's name has one. There have been some problems here, but you can spot it in the gunshop if you know to look for it.
When the grip safety is depressed, it actuates a rod that lifts the firing pin block up, and out of the way of the firing pin. What point in the grip safety's travel that it releases can vary. Some guns release rather early in the movement, while others require the grip safety to be absolutey all the way in.
That's fine if you will always get a perfect grasp on the gun. But odds are, when you really need the gun, it will be the one time your grip will be sloppy. For that reason, I think the f.p. block should release earlier than that. I think it should release early in the grip safety's squeeze, but somewhere in the mid point should be OK.
You can check it by dropping a pencil in the muzzle of an EMPTY gun, pointing the EMPTY gun toward the ceiling, and dry firing the EMPTY gun. The pencil should "launch" out of the barrel. By doing that a few times, varying the amount the grip safety is squeezed in, you can get an idea when it releases the f.p. block.
If the grip safety needs to bee absolutelky positively all the way in, I'd pass.
Those two things may sound like Kimber has a lot of trouble, but not really. Just opt for an internal extractor if availalable (although probably 99% of internal extractor guns are fine), and do that quick check on the f.p. block.
Or find a pre "Series II" gun, and you have neither to worry about.
Regarding ambi safeties:
Unless you're left-handed, I wouldn't mess with one. They usually have split tounge-and-groove pins, which WILL loosen up, and may cause trouble. Also, the right-side lever of an ambi is not against your body, so is not shielded. Therefore, it can be hit or bumped, knocking the safety "off".
The standard safety can be taken "off" left-handed by reaching over the slide with the thumb. You can reengage it that way, but it's easier for me to use my trigger finger for that.
Good luck! And, I hope this helped. I really am trying to help, not just gripe about things.
June 12th, 2006 02:42 PM
June 12th, 2006 03:40 PM
Barry.. Great info... I thank you very much for the report.
artz..That is the thing I don't want. I don't want a weapon that I have to modify out of the box.
June 12th, 2006 03:45 PM
As I said in the message...
Originally Posted by kansas_shooter
I bought an OLDER model....
All the new ones that are at least a year old have the new HD extractor.
You will recognize it on one side of the slide that has an large "X" on it
" Refuse to be a victim, make sure there is a round chambered ! "
Just call me a pessimistic optimist !
U.S. Navy vet 1981-1992
June 12th, 2006 03:48 PM
artz... thanks for the clarification..sorry
June 12th, 2006 03:51 PM
artz..not trying to fight, just asking for knowledge on this next question:
If the trigger is not long... what is the advantage of LDA over SA ?? Why did you choose the LDA ??
Thanks in advance
June 12th, 2006 04:19 PM
June 12th, 2006 06:17 PM
I met up with a man and his wife not long ago at the range. He was practicing for his upcoming CCW class and had a Kimber Ultra (CDP possibly). We got talking and swapped weapons for a couple mags. His Kimber was extremely lightweight but felt recoil was much less than my 5" Mil-Spec and just as accurate. I was really impressed with it.
His wife had a similar sized (3") Para LDA and let me fire off a few rounds. The trigger was butter smooth and excellent break. I wouldn't say no if someone gave me one. I see the LDA advantage as being able to carry a 1911 chambered, hammer down AND ready to fire upon drawing the weapon. The trigger pull is different than traditional SA but not at all unappealing. You really should check out one or two to see what you think, they've got so many models of LDA I can't keep them straight but they're definitely worth a look.
As far as ambi-safeties: Yes, they CAN be swiped off accidentally but I don't think it's at all common place. A general gunsmith can swap it out for a std. single side safety without too much time or trouble. If you choose to leave it in place you'd probably be just fine - even if it DID get knocked off "safe," the gun's still holstered with a covered trigger and it'd need both the grip safety activated and the trigger pulled to fire a round ... pretty slim chance of all that happening at once.
June 12th, 2006 06:47 PM
I have a newer Para SSP LDA with a power extractor. It works perfectly
with all kinds of ammunition. I like the LDA too, but it can take a little get used to
like a Glock.
If I wanted a Kimber, I would get one with the internal extractor. But, I would
rather get a S&W 1911...
June 12th, 2006 09:56 PM
Recently, I purchased a Para 745 LDA (stainless steel) for my new duty weapon. I couldn't be happier. I, for one, was never "comfortable" carrying a "cocked-and-locked" 1911. My Para is carried with one in the chamber, hammer down and safety off. Now I'm "comfortable". LOL.
I'm surprised at how well I can shoot the Para, given my previous experience with large-caliber semi-autos. I attribute this to the LDA trigger (which breaks at six pounds on my particular firearm). Of course, I couldn't leave well enough alone. I had my gunsmith install an Ed Brown arched mainspring housing, a gold-bead front sight, gold "dots" on the rear sight (works for me), cut serrations on the top of the slide and perform mods as necessary for reliability (all for $190, excluding the price of the arched mainspring housing). Tripp Research then hard-chromed the firearm (matte on the frame, the top of the slide and an extra Ed Brown mag, brushed on the sides of the slide and some smaller components, polished on the barrel). Just for good measure, I slapped on some mammoth ivory grips. Now I'm stylin'! LOL.
I now have over a thousand rounds of 230 gr. Winchester USA FMJ and 185 gr. Remington JHP (as well as a fair amount of my carry ammo, 185 gr. Taurus HEX) without a hitch...except for a follower hanging up on the window on one of the mags. My gunsmith quickly remedied the situation.
Anyways, I can't speak highly enough of the LDA trigger. For another opinion, check out the following:http://www.cylinder-slide.com/ldaarticle.shtml
June 12th, 2006 10:20 PM
My girlfriend had a Para LDA. It was a nice shooter, smooth trigger pull and decent finish/fit. My buddy swapped a few guns for the Para and had nothing but problems with it. Para did fix it for him, and shipping was not a hassle.
All the small parts extra, I can't see the extra need for a LDA pistol over a SA pistol. More parts to break , or not funtion properly.
Just my 2 cents.
"In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson
Nemo Me Impune Lacesset
June 13th, 2006 08:16 AM
Originally Posted by TwoGuns
Okay, lemme get this straight. You give a review like that and a detailed description of your customized Para but don't give us pics? Man, that's just not right ... sure sounds like a beauty, let's see it!
P.S. Anybody know if Para still offers a Commander length 9x19 (in any config or action)? Still trying to decide which 9mm to add to the collection.
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