Review: Tisas Raider B45RDG Pistol

A new 1911 with the look and feel of a classic pistol.

by
posted on November 9, 2023
Tisas Raider Review

Earlier this year, the Turkish gun company Tisas released their own homage version of the iconic Colt M45A1 1911 pistol. Tisas calls their version the Raider, in reference to the USMC Raiders, one of the specialized units which carried the M45A1. The Tisas Raider not only commemorates the Marine’s last service handgun, but also because this Turkish-produced 1911 is an honest-to-goodness, properly set-up fighting 1911 with a real-world average retail price of $630. This means that shooters have access to an affordable single-stack .45 ACP pistol with a neat backstory and a feature set typically seen on handguns with double the price tag of this gun. Genuine decommissioned Colt M45A1s (easily identifiable by the crossed-out markings on their slides) are highly collectible, and Colt is no longer offering the commercial versions for sale.

The M45A1 Backstory

The 1911 has seen service for over 100 years, and American warfighters have constantly relied on it throughout the past century. Towards the sunset of its military career, the pistol was retained by specialized military units. The USMC’s Colt M45A1 was the last official Colt 1911 to see service with the Marine Corps. The Colt M45A1 had a short-lived career after some sporadic reliability issues and concerns about the finish that plagued early units. Much of the ensuing back-and-forth between the Marines and Colt resulted in the M45A1 ultimately being decommissioned and phased out in 2016. After the fact, MARSOC chose the 9mm Glock G19 as the M45A1’s successor.

Tisas Raider Overview

The Tisas Raider is configured nearly identically to the Colt M45A1. It sports a similar Flat Dark Earth (FDE) Cerakote finish, similar ambidextrous low-profile safeties, Novak-style combat sights, G10 stocks, front and rear slide serrations, a similar solid trigger shoe and so forth. Although the Tisas is modeled after the Colt, the Raider is also reminiscent of the Kimber Desert Warrior, another single-stack .45 ACP 1911 designed as a modernized fighting 1911 variant. I first came across the specific pistol I fired at a writer’s event, and although this gun already had more than 600 rounds through it, the build quality was satisfactory considering its price tag and the usual price tag for a 1911-style pistol. Military 1911s were never built to have extremely tight tolerances between their frames and slides, and I have no complaints about my sample. There was a reasonable amount of play, but the fit was not sloppy either. The trigger broke right around 4.5 pounds and made for easy shooting. The G10 stocks are functional and make the pistol look more attractive.

Shooting The Tisas Raider

During my evaluation of the Tisas Raider, I fired a total of 227 rounds of .45 ACP with a mix of both factory and handloaded ammunition at targets placed 10 and 25 yards downrange. My factory ammo selection included Fiocchi’s 230-grain FMJ Training Dynamics, Federal’s Punch 230-grain JHP load and Sierra’s Sports Master 185-grain JHP load. I also fired 67 rounds of my 200-grain lead semi wad-cutter handloads loaded with an SNS bullet based on the classic Hensley and Gibbs #68 mold charged with 5.4 grains of W231 powder.

Gun with ammoAs previously mentioned, the demo pistol I shot already had north of 600 rounds through it, and the gun wasn’t exactly clean. I added a few drops of oil on the slide rails and over the barrel hood before live fire. I used a mixture of magazines including some 8-round MecGars that were supplied with the demo gun along with a 10-round Chip McCormick power mag and two 8-round Wilson Combat ETM magazines I brought with me.

Overall, I was very satisfied with the performance of this pistol. I shot the Raider in different combinations of slow and rapid fire, and I got the pistol nice and hot. Accuracy is surprisingly decent for a gun of this price point, and this specimen seems to have quite an affinity for the Fiocchi 230-grain FMJ load (it is after all, modeled after a fighting military pistol). The Novak combat sights are regulated for a center hold at 25 yards. The four different loads I put through the gun for review all gave acceptable accuracy. Obviously, combat pistol sights aren’t as precise as target sights adjusted to punch out the X-ring on an NRA B-8 target with a 6 o’clock hold. When shot from a stable bench position, the pistol shined and printed excellent groups.

A Critical Look At A $630 1911

For the price point, I have no real complaints about the Tisas Raider’s fit and finish. It’s frankly extremely competitive against other sub-$1000 1911s. But don’t expect a $630 1911 to be expertly fitted from oversize parts like a $3,000 Nighthawk (I got a small blister on the web of my hand after the shooting session). During live fire, I made a point to not take it easy on the Raider. I experienced eight stoppages between the 227 rounds I shot. Half of these were magazine related, and not the gun's fault, but I want to emphasize how critical the magazine is as part of the system. The other half weren’t the typical malfunctions that 1911s are known for such as stovepipes or feedway stoppages. Rather, these jams were somewhat strange in that the slide froze to the rear without the slide locking back. Because the malfunction wasn’t near the breech, I don’t think this was a mag or ammo issue. Based on conversations with a noted 1911 gunsmith, my educated guess is that these four jams came from an amalgamation of factors including a dirtier gun that was full of mixed fouling and lubricant combined with a thicker Cerakote finish. Compared to traditional surface treatments, Cerakote is thicker and seems to be grabbier. Perhaps the remedy is more preventative maintenance and keeping the pistol cleaner.

Besides being a nice homage to the last official military 1911 ever fielded, the Raider provides shooters with a 1911 that’s accurate, affordable and attainable. It’s also priced right use as the foundation towards a more personalized and customized pistol for the dedicated 1911 shooter.

Tisas Raider Specifications:

  • Country Of Origin: Turkey
  • Make: Tisas 
  • Caliber: .45 ACP
  • Barrel Length: 5 inches
  • Action: Single-action, semi-automatic
  • Internals: Colt Series 70
  • Frame And Slide Material: Carbon steel, government length
  • Accessory Rail: Picatinny
  • Length: 8.7 inches
  • Height: 5.5 inches
  • Width: 1.3 inches
  • Weight: 40 ounces
  • Finish: FDE Cerakote
  • Magazine Capacity: 8 rounds
  • Magazines Included: 2 MecGar eight-round magazines
  • Safety: Thumb safety
  • Sights: 3-Dot Novak combat sights
  • Stocks: Textured G10

25-yard Accuracy Report

 

Smallest Group (inches)

Average Group (inches)

Largest Group (inches)

Sierra Sports Master 185-grain JHP

1.30

1.83

2.25

Fiocchi Training Dynamics 230-grain FMJ 

1.10

1.76

2.50

Federal 230-grain Personal Defense Punch

1.00

1.81

2.25

 

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