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Tisas Night Stalker 9: Best Budget 1911?



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AMERICAN DESIGN, GERMAN CARTRIDGE, MADE IN TURKEY

Not long ago, we took a look at the Tisas PX-9, a polymer frame striker-fired gun, and were pretty impressed with it. But let’s face it, making a decent plastic gun for a budget price isn’t impossible these days.

But a good 1911? With an MSRP of only $750 and seen online for as low as $600, this is one cheap 1911.

Is it good? You’ll be surprised.

TISAS 1911 NIGHT STALKER 9 SPECS

  • Frame: Carbon, Full-Size w/ Picatinny Rail
  • Slide: Carbon Steel, Government Length
  • Caliber: 9MM
  • Barrel: 5″ Cold Hammer Forged, Ramped
  • Internals: Colt® 70 Series
  • Sights: Novak Style U-Night Rear – Tritium/Orange Front
  • Grips: Machined Aluminum
  • Finish: Platinum Grey Cerakote
  • Weight: 2lb 4oz
  • Tisas Forged Foundation Construction – Forged Frame & Slide**
  • Tisas Hammer Forged Barrel
  • Colt® Series 70 Based Internals
  • Lowered & Flared Ejection Port
  • Platinum Grey Cerakote Finish
  • Contoured Trigger Guard Under Cut
  • Rear Slide Cocking Serrations
  • SF Machined Mainspring Housing
  • Machined Aluminum Grips
  • Novak Style U-Notch Rear w/ Tritium Front
  • Skeletonized Hammer
  • SF Trigger
  • SF Style Ambidextrous Safety
  • Extended Beavertail Grip Safety
  • Available in .45ACP, 9MM and 10MM Auto.
  • Tisas Premium Owners Kit (2 Magazines, Cleaning Kit, Lockable Rugged Case)

DIET 1911, THE 9MM 1911

The classic 1911 cartridge is .45 ACP, so why would anyone want a 9mm 1911?

Simple, .45 ACP is old and obsolescent. Ya, I said it. Come at me.

I actually really enjoy shooting .45 ACP, but I cannot ignore that for practical reasons, there just isn’t a lot going for the old .45 ACP. Capacity, ease of shooting, cost per round, and the fact that almost every other pistol I own is 9mm – .45 ACP just doesn’t make much sense to me. But I still want a 1911.

I’m not really knocking .45 ACP, it has a place in a lot of people’s hearts, and even if you just think it’s neat, that’s good enough to keep shooting it.

But I want 9mm, even if it’s a 1911.

Plus, 9mm 1911s are just a ton of fun. Easier to shoot, cheaper to shoot, and still has all of that 1911 feel and goodness to love.

ON THE BENCH

I’ll admit to you now that I’m not a 1911 nerd. I know my way around them, I enjoy shooting them, I’ve owned a few, from a Rock Island 1911A1 to a Bul Armory 2011, but I’ve never been the guy that throws $3,000 or $4,000 down on a 1911. I love shooting those guns, but I’m not going to throw that much of my own money at one. Yet.

If you’re expecting or even want that level of 1911, then this pistol is clearly not for you. If you’re trying to keep it under $1,000, I can help.

Tisas uses a forged hammer, barrel, and slide. This is a step up in quality that most budget 1911s won’t have, and it really shows in the final product.

One of the big ways that you can tell a good 1911 from a bad one is how tight everything is. A top-tier 1911 will be basically entirely hand-fitted, and everything will feel perfect. What shouldn’t move doesn’t move at all, and what should move feels like it’s moving on ball bearings. 

If you want that kind of quality, you’ll need to open your wallet a lot more than what the Tisas will run you. But considering the price – I’m pretty impressed with this gun.

Slide-to-barrel fitment is outstanding. You can almost hear, and you can definitely feel the tight seal. With a little oil on the barrel, you get a perceivable suction break when you work the slide. It feels smooth, clean, and really good.

Slide-to-frame is not as good, but it’s still very good. Zero up-and-down movement, but there is a very slight movement from side to side in the rear of the slide. I’m talking far less than a millimeter. It’s there, but you need to be looking for it to notice it.

After the great fitment of the above parts, I’m a little disappointed in the grip safety. It’s not bad, but it isn’t on the same level as the slide and frame. There is enough side-to-side movement in the grip safety that if you dunked this gun in moon dust, you might get some in the grip safety and feel the grit. Sand won’t get in it, but dust would.

The ambi safety is pretty nice. Both sides are the same side and actually work for wrong-handed use. It isn’t as super snappy as I tend to like, but it isn’t mushy, either. For the price, it’s batting above average.

Lastly, the trigger. 1911s are legendary for amazing triggers. Well, this one isn’t legendary. It isn’t bad, but it isn’t amazing either. Hell of a lot better than anything on a striker-fired gun, but in the pantheon of 1911 triggers, this one is definitely budget.

Roughly 3mm of take-up hits a firm wall. The wall isn’t glass rod, but it’s crisp. Pushing through the break takes about 3 pounds of force and maybe another 3mm of movement. Reset is short and crisp by normal standards, but a bit meh by 1911 standards.

If you’re a 1911 trigger snob, this is a budget trigger on a factory but. But that doesn’t make it a bad trigger. Also, 1911 triggers are pretty easy to work on and improve if you’re interested.

Everything else is of less importance, but still nice. The grip panels are metal and smooth, I would replace those for sure. Slide stop is solid and works, and taking the Tisas apart is exactly like a normal 1911. 

One nice thing about this 9mm Night Stalker is the mag well. Not a huge mag well, but it helps and is nice to have.

ON THE RANGE

For iron sights, I really like these Novak Style U-Notch with a Tritium front sight. It’s easy to pick up and easy to hit what you want with it.

Mine is shooting high by several inches at 10 yards, so a 6 o’clock hold is necessary. That said, this is an impressively accurate pistol. Even with fairly meh ammo, stacking rounds isn’t very hard.

I’ve got about 200 rounds on the pistol range with this gun and another 200 rounds in competition. Zero malfunctions of any kind so far.

Ammo was provided by AmmunitionToGo.com, so big thanks to them for that.

Recoil is soft, partly because of the weight of the gun and partly because of just how well a 1911 shoots. Everything feels smooth and fast and like the gun is just put together really well.

That might sound kind of strange, but if you’ve got time with a good 1911 and a bad 1911, you know what I’m talking about. 

I really like the color of the Night Stalker as well, and I’m glad to say that the finish is holding up. Even with holster draws and being dropped on tables, no marks have shown up yet.

I don’t really have anything more interesting to say other than that this gun just works. It works well, it works smoothly, and I’m really impressed with it for the price.

LOOSE ROUNDS

If you’re looking for a 1911 that won’t break the bank, Tisas is the best I’ve seen so far. Any cheaper slays the quality, and even spending a bit more doesn’t seem to get you much over what this offers. Tisas is definitely punching above their weight with the Night Stalker.

With a $750 MSRP, this is a lot of gun for the money.

If you don't want 9mm, the Night Stalker also comes in .45 ACP and 10mm — all three models are the same MSRP.

If you want to invest a little more into it, I would recommend an adjustable trigger or having a gunsmith do a little work on the factory one. I think throwing $100 or so at that would result in a huge return on your investment.

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2 Comments

  • GomeznSA says:

    Hmm – ‘interesting’ write up. It ‘almost’ had the flavor of him trying to convince himself that the 9mm in a 1911 platform is ‘better’ than the original. Does he also advocate shooting 9mm from revolvers?

    I have no idea what his bona fides are (NOT trying to bash him by any means) or why I (or anyone else) should pay his opinion any heed but I agree with him regarding the really $$$$ ones – unless they are being used for competition.
    FWIW I’ve been shooting 1911s in .45ACP for almost fifty years and probably have not spent $4-5K total on them, and that includes the priciest one I currently own (Sig Nightmare)

    • David Lane says:

      There are a lot of ways to improve the 1911. For me, making it 9mm is one of them. I don’t advocate for 9mm revolvers. If I’m going to use or own a revolver, it’s because it’s in a monster caliber like .454 casull. Otherwise, there are two dozen firearms in 9mm that are better for my purposes.

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  • Hmm - 'interesting' write up. It 'almost' had the flavor of him trying to convince himself that the 9mm in a 1911 platform is 'better' than the original. Does he also advocate shooting 9mm from revolvers?

    I have no idea what his bona fides are (NOT trying to bash him by any means) or why I (or anyone else) should pay his opinion any heed but I agree with him regarding the really $$$$ ones - unless they are being used for competition.
    FWIW I've been shooting 1911s in .45ACP for almost fifty years and probably have not spent $4-5K total on them, and that includes the priciest one I currently own (Sig Nightmare)

    • There are a lot of ways to improve the 1911. For me, making it 9mm is one of them. I don't advocate for 9mm revolvers. If I'm going to use or own a revolver, it's because it's in a monster caliber like .454 casull. Otherwise, there are two dozen firearms in 9mm that are better for my purposes.

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