July 25, 2023
This is the first time that Shooting Times has reported on a Tisas 1911, and I’m pleased to say that the aluminum-alloy-frame 1911 Carry B45BA pistol is classically designed, well built, and quite accurate. Tisas stands for Trabzon Silah Sanayi A.S., and the pistols are made in Turkey and imported by SDS Imports LLC, doing business as Tisas USA. It is located in Knoxville, Tennessee. Tisas has been making Model 1911s since 1993, and while ST is a bit late to the table in receiving and reviewing the company’s guns, I’m glad we have this opportunity because the pistol I fired for this report has excellent features, shoots well, and carries a very reasonable retail price. (Our sister publication, Firearms News, reported on the Tisas D10 chambered in 10mm Auto in the April 2023, Issue 7 edition, and the writer, Patrick Sweeney who happens to be a well-known Model 1911 expert, found that pistol to be, “a 10mm pistol like the ’80s but better.” In fact, he used the word “glorious” to describe it. So if you’re interested in full-size 10mm Model 1911s, I encourage you to read that review, too. The gun appears to be a very capable pistol indeed.)
Before I get into the details of the review sample, I want readers to know that Tisas has Model 1911s of just about every configuration current handgunners want. I counted a total of 32 different Model 1911s on the Tisas USA website this morning, ranging from compact carry models through plain-Jane, full-size military-style guns to full-blown, tricked-out pistols with all the bells and whistles. There are models with aluminum frames. There are models with steel frames (stainless and carbon). There are models with frame rails. There are models with fully adjustable rear sights. There are models with ported slides. And there are models chambered in 9mm Luger, 10mm Auto, and .45 ACP. Retail prices range from $429.99 to $1,049.99. (Tisas also makes the PX-9 Gen 3 series of polymer-frame, striker-fired pistols and the Fatih 13, which is a hammer-fired .380 ACP semiautomatic pistol with a 3.98-inch barrel and an aluminum frame.)
The Carry B45BA Up Close
The Tisas 1911 Carry B45BA I fired for this report is a Commander-style Model 1911 with a 4.25-inch barrel and a forged aluminum-alloy bobtail frame. The frame’s rounded butt is a genuine Ed Brown bobtail cut and is trademarked. The Carry B45BA weighs 30 ounces. It is 7.92 inches long, 1.41 inches thick, and 5.7 inches tall (from the bottom of the magazine’s bumper pad/baseplate to the top of the rear sight). The sight radius is 5.83 inches. With the black Cerakote slide and dark gray Cerakote frame like our sample, the suggested retail price is $619.99. Tisas calls this version the Stingray. The company also chambers the Stingray in 9mm, and it offers other Carry models in all-black and satin stainless finishes and with or without a bobtail butt.
Our pistol’s black G10 grip panels are textured in a sunburst style. With the grips installed, the grip frame is 1.31 inches thick, and the grip circumference is 5.25 inches.
The mainspring housing surface is smooth and so is the grip frame’s frontstrap. The grip safety is a beavertail type with a smooth memory bump. The mouth of the magazine well is beveled for smooth reloads, and the area at the top of the grip frame where the trigger guard meets it is sculpted so as to allow a high handhold.
The 1911 Carry B45BA comes with two Mec-Gar magazines that hold eight rounds of .45 ACP ammo each. They have flat followers, removable polymer bumper pads/baseplates, and numbered witness holes on the sides. The pistol also comes with a sturdy, compact, foam-lined, lockable hard carry case; an operator’s manual; a trigger lock; a cleaning rod; a cleaning brush; and a synthetic bushing wrench.
The thumb safety is ambidextrous, and it is extended. The levers are grooved. The slide stop’s lever is also grooved, and the slide stop hole on the right side of the frame is countersunk. The end of the slide stop pin is rounded. And the surface of the extended magazine release is checkered.
The forged slide is nice and smooth (there’s that word again), the areas on both sides of the rear of the slide where grasping grooves are typically located are textured in a fish-scale-like pattern. There are no grasping grooves or texturing at the front of the slide. Instead, the slide is devoid of any markings or warnings. (I like that!) The name “Carry” (in small, tasteful letters) and a small Tisas eagle logo are located on the left-hand side of the slide just behind the textured grasping area.
The ejection port of the slide is lowered and flared, and the ejector is slightly extended. In battery, the slide-to-frame fit is very tight with just a slight hint of side-to-side play detected when I tried to wiggle it. But there is no movement of the barrel when pushing down on the chamber area.
The hammer is a skeletonized and modified rowel type, and the fingerpiece of the speed-type trigger has three lightening holes as well as grooves on the face. The fingerpiece is 0.25 inch thick. Also, the internals are Series 70-style parts.
Five measurements with my RCBS trigger pull scale averaged 3 pounds, 9.6 ounces with very little variance from pull to pull. That sentence doesn’t tell the whole story; four of the measurements were exactly 3 pounds, 10 ounces, and one measurement was 3 pounds, 8 ounces. In my experience, this is one of the most consistent Model 1911 trigger pulls I have ever measured. There is some take-up, which is to be expected with any Model 1911, but there is almost no perceptible overtravel. It is smooth, clean, and consistent.
The 1911 Carry B45BA uses a traditional barrel-bushing setup, and the fit between the barrel and the bushing is snug enough for excellent accuracy (see the accompanying chart) but loose enough for takedown without requiring the use of the included bushing wrench. The muzzle of the barrel is crowned, and the chamber is throated and polished. The pistol uses a standard recoil spring guide rod assembly.
The drift-adjustable rear sight is a Novak-style combat-type sight, and it has a 0.116-inch square notch flanked by two white dots. A 0.138-inch-thick blade up front has the third white dot. Both sights are dovetailed into the slide.
As per my usual shooting protocol, for this report, I fired the .45 ACP 1911 Carry B45BA for accuracy from a sandbag benchrest at a distance of 25 yards. I fired five factory loads with bullet weights ranging from 185 grains to 230 grains and bullet styles ranging from lead semiwadcutters through synthetic-coated TSJs to hollowpoints. All loads functioned reliably, and I didn’t experience a single malfunction. All bullet styles fed, fired, extracted, and ejected well clear of the shooting line.
I won’t go into all the details, but as you can see from the accompanying chart, my groups averaged between 2.22 and 3.55 inches. Three, five-shot groups with each load were fired and averaged. Overall average accuracy was 2.92 inches. That’s definitely acceptable for self-defense and, in fact, is quite good compared to many other personal-protection pistols I’ve fired.
The top prize for accuracy went to the Black Hills 200-grain Lead SWC loading. It averaged 2.22 inches. The load producing the highest velocity was the Hornady American Gunner 185-grain XTP, which averaged a velocity of 991 fps for five rounds measured 12 feet from the muzzle with a Competition Electronics ProChrono Digital Chronograph.
As you can tell from my enthusiastic report, I like the Tisas 1911 Carry B45BA pistol very much. My sample shoots well, functions perfectly, and looks great. It’s a traditional Commander-style Model 1911 with some elegant, stylish touches. I would call it a quality classic, and I also say it is one smooth operator.
1911 Carry B45BA Specifications
- Manufacturer: Tisas, tisasusa.com
- Importer: SDS Imports LLC
- Type: Recoil-operated autoloader
- Caliber: .45 ACP
- Magazine Capacity: 8 rounds
- Barrel: 4.25 in.
- Overall Length: 7.92 in.
- Width: 1.41 in.
- Height: 5.7 in. (top of rear sight to bottom of magazine bumper pad/baseplate)
- Weight, Empty: 30 oz.
- Grips Black: G10
- Finish: Black Cerakote slide, dark gray Cerakote frame
- Sights: Novak-style rear, three-dot setup
- Trigger: 3.6-lb. pull (as tested)
- Safety: Ambidextrous manual thumb safety; beavertail grip safety
- MSRP: $619.99