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AMT Hardballer Reviews

Discuss and review everything about the pistol, from the original 1911, to the modern compact semi-automatic.

Postby WagTheDog » Sun Oct 17, 2010 12:33 pm

I've seen comments on other forums calling the old AMT Hardballer lots of bad names, but I think the posters may have been griping a bit too much. I have an AMT Hardballer that I bought new back in the early 1980s (back then, for only $186), mainly because it looked like the old gray "rattletrap" 1911A1s that I had in my tank company's arms room. Granted, it's no "Mercedes" of the M1911 world, but it's always been functional, if a bit "stiff" for taking down. I have never done a thing to it but clean it after shooting, and sometimes not even that, but I must say that after all these years, it's certainly lived up to its name-- until recently, mine only liked "hardball" ammo-- .45ACP FMJ. It would never reliably feed any hollow points of any manufacturer I tried, and occasionally even old round-nose "lead heads" (non-jacketed lead bullets) would hang up and fail to feed all the way into the chamber. Thus, for home defense, I always had a nagging feeling that it might hang up and fail to feed, so we relied on a shotgun & a S&W .38 SPL (my wife's) for that. Now that I've got my CCL, I've often thought I'd see about taking it along as a "car carry" gun, but still always had "that nagging feeling" about a possible FTF at "the" critical moment. With all the various new composite "defense" loads coming out the last few years, I also wanted to see if I could get it to digest something other than solid, round-nose FMJs. So, recently, I tried out some Hornady "XTP" hollow points, but nope, it didn't like them, either-- their (truly vicious-looking) gaping mouths hung up immediately and the Old Girl just wouldn't feed them half the time. HOWEVER (happy ending)- I finally was able to buy some Hornady "Critical Defense" FTX rounds in .45ACP. They're hollow points with soft pink plastic nose inserts, and by test reports I've read so far, are a truly realiable & nasty "defense" load. ..and wow!-- My ol' Hardballer just loves 'em. Just my luck-- I bought a cheap "plinkin' gun many years ago that now has a taste for expensive ammo.) They feed with 100% reliability, probably due to the solid metal jacket combined with the well-tapered point of the bullet, but whatever it is, it likes 'em, a lot. I would guess that it would also feed COR-BON/Glaser "Pow'R Ball" rounds as well, but I've not tried any yet. Well, I'll carry it now as a "car CCW", and reach for it first if I have to. With kids heading off to college taking all my earnings, and my 401k tanked down to a "201k" or less, it'll be awhile before I upgrade to something more modern & highly rated by seemingly everyone, like a Kimber or a Para. I've thought about maybe betting it worked on by a gunsmith to get it to feed a full range of ammo, but it hardly seems worthwhile now-- it likes a staple "range diet" of FMJs, and for CCW purposes, it'll feed those expensive pink-nosed FTXs forever, or until my money runs out, so maybe I'll wait awhile longer.
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Joined: Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:32 am

Postby razr » Thu Sep 29, 2011 1:11 am

I shoot mine sometimes and have never had any problems with it. The trigger was rough and had to be cleaned, other than that its a nice shooter. Collectors like them in CA.
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Joined: Fri May 05, 2006 12:47 am


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