Brown vs Wilson

Discussion in 'General 1911 talk' started by azguy1911, Dec 23, 2017.

  1. azguy1911

    azguy1911 Collection Complete Supporting Addict

    Oct 22, 2015
    After watching the classified for months I'm shocked how few Ed Brown's come up for sale, are their owners just happier or do they make that many less guns ?

    Go !
    ZoidMeister likes this.
  2. PorscheGuy

    PorscheGuy Well-Known Member

    Feb 14, 2012
    I've owned several of both, prefer an EB any day over the WC
    ozy, Dr.Lou, Stogies and 2 others like this.

  3. Oldag

    Oldag Well-Known Member

    Aug 27, 2014
    If I recall correctly, WC produces more pistols than EB.
    Dr.Lou, boatdoc and WC145 like this.
  4. PorscheGuy

    PorscheGuy Well-Known Member

    Feb 14, 2012
    i would bet that WC builds a lot more than EB
    Stogies, boatdoc, Babboonbobo and 3 others like this.
  5. azguy1911

    azguy1911 Collection Complete Supporting Addict

    Oct 22, 2015
    Really, wow. Do tell ?
    ditto1958 likes this.
  6. NPV

    NPV Previously CT Specialist Supporting Addict

    Nov 15, 2017
    Don't get me wrong here, Wilsons are fantastic guns and they are one of the top of their class. But IMO they lack soul. Every time I look at Wilson's website they have a new 1911 or AR or knife or watch. There is no other semi-custom 1911 company that has such a large market share. Personally it made it hard for me to get attached to one, whereas my Les Baer Custom Carry that's got file marks and is a little different than every other LB just does it for me.
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2018
    newyork, CT72, Raylan Givens and 9 others like this.
  7. Guy Montag

    Guy Montag Well-Known Member

    Oct 24, 2014
    Ford v Chevy, 'nuff said. ;)

    <-------WC fan
    boatdoc and Babboonbobo like this.
  8. PorscheGuy

    PorscheGuy Well-Known Member

    Feb 14, 2012
    you see WC everywhere, nothing special about them IMO. the EB just fits my hand better and i always shoot better with a EB.
    Raylan Givens likes this.
  9. azguy1911

    azguy1911 Collection Complete Supporting Addict

    Oct 22, 2015
    Great, you guys just cost me another $3,500, the search begins
    ozy, boatdoc, LPRoad and 3 others like this.
  10. PaperTiger

    PaperTiger Member

    Sep 14, 2017
    I have handled & shot a few Wilsons, and always held them in high regard. Theres a few reasons why I am personally a bit more comfortable with the Browns

    First, I own 3 and have never had an issue. Well, one time when I was testing handloads - but that was my fault. Thousands of rounds without any problems, and a Kobra Carry is my EDC.

    Second, I like their business model. Now - they are coming out with some new models and more radical features, but their core offerings are standard hand built finely tuned machines. You don't need to drop $4k right off the bat. You can get in around $2100-2600 new and then decide what custom options you want, if any.
    IF you do want custom options on your new toy - they can turn your order around in 2 weeks or less - very fast.

    Lastly, the customer service that I have experienced is top notch. I'll get a call when they receive the gun to go over the work to be done. A few days later, they call and let you know what they did - which for me, has always been more than I asked for, and is included in the basic service package. Here's a few examples I have experienced:
    "Your sear looked a little worn so we went ahead and replaced that as well"
    "This model is a few years old and we came out with a new hammer, the gunsmith thought it was a good idea to put the new hammer in"
    "Since you've done repeat business with us, I talked to the manager and we knocked of $75 from your order"
    Things like that may be expected when you are spending good amounts of cash, but actually having someone deliver is another story. If you go to some of the other custom manufacturers (many produce excellent firearms) you often select from a pre-defined offering, which you can buy in stores like 10,000 other people. They cost more, they look pretty, but do you trust it as an EDC/duty pistol? I have some other MFG's that stay in the safe or come with to the range, but 95% of the time, its' an EB in my holster.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2017
  11. azguy1911

    azguy1911 Collection Complete Supporting Addict

    Oct 22, 2015
    Damn, papertiger, that's a really nice service model. So I can pick up a basic gun and have it tuned and updated to my wants later. I like that. Thanks
    ZoidMeister likes this.
  12. tac45

    tac45 What me worry ? Supporting Addict

    Mar 4, 2012
    As I remember Ed Brown has been in business nine or ten years longer then Wilson .
    Brown pioneered the innovations employed And copied by most semi custom builders today including Bill Wilson.
    Please note I’m not discounting other innovators of FULL costom pistols ie Armond Swenson ect .that started around the same time as Ed Brown.
    That being said I find Ed Browns 1911s fit and especially finish
    Superior to Wilson’s .
  13. zipper046

    zipper046 Well-Known Member Supporting Addict

    Dec 28, 2013
    Haven’t owned either (yet), but shot both. Both exhibited excellent accuracy and workmanship.

    Personally...i’d go with Ed Brown. Their 1911 line is a standard classic line holding to classic styling with just a touch of new. Wilson seems to capitalize on the “latest & greatest” craze and their offerings seem to be more and more modernistic in looks. I like simple, well made classics (like me! LOL)....

    To each his/her own...its really personal preference...
    ozy, boatdoc, Raylan Givens and 6 others like this.
  14. NPV

    NPV Previously CT Specialist Supporting Addict

    Nov 15, 2017
    Simple and well made never goes out of style.....
  15. JH225

    JH225 Well-Known Member

    Aug 5, 2014
    Having owned many of both brands, I personally feel Brown makes a smoother shooting and better feeling "in hand" pistol than Wilson does. Is that to say I don't like WC, no, but as other have said, Wilson's just feel OK, while Browns give off that Ooooohhh! factor. Is that also to say that WC doesn't make a fine pistol? Absolutely not, but as evidenced by numerous well documented "build discrepencies" in recent builds, that tells me they have grown too big, too fast. This is also evidenced by the sheer amount of pistols they produce yearly and the amount of gunsmiths they employ.

    Is it an "almighty dollar" thing? I don't have an answer to that. I will say however that just a week ago or so, Wilson made a huge offer via their customer service team that in no way did they have to do. I went a different route in the end, but just the offer itself puts a star in their CS column for me.

    One other thing that came to light in my personal collection earlier this year was that the Executive Carry SS that I had EB build me is EASILY on par with a WC Supergrade for several thousands of dollars less. And on that note, I never understood why a "Supergrade" line was needed. Shouldn't ALL pistols you put out be on par with each other?

    The Ed Brown build is very highly optioned and just exudes sexiness along with being a tack driver. The build almost didn't happen due to 'Ol Ed's "my way or the highway" creedo, but we worked thru that and I am glad we did. He also has appeared to have "softened up" in his old age as evidenced by the new offerings, so maybe he has finally seen the light. :) Plus the fact that nobody, but nobody, does a Stainless Steel finish the way Brown does, period.

    So I will have to put my vote into the Ed Brown side of the poll.

    The above is certainly not a knock on WC, just that IMHO, EB is producing a pistol that is a better value.
    ozy, PaperTiger and ZoidMeister like this.
  16. LandCruiser

    LandCruiser Active Member

    Dec 8, 2017
    Every Wilson I’ve had was good to go out of the box. The Alpha Elite rail that I bought was very tight and had a few failures to feed, so did my Cobra Carry. The only guns I’ve owned that were just as reliable as my Wilsons were GIs and my two SACS.
    Kadonny and boatdoc like this.
  17. PaperTiger

    PaperTiger Member

    Sep 14, 2017
    ....the feel of EB stainless is hard to describe. You can take a S/S EB and just feel the marriage of man & machine.
    Just sent off a 2009 Special Forces Carry to be finished in the new industrial stainless, will post pics somewhere here when it returns after the holidays
    Dr.Lou likes this.
  18. ZoidMeister

    ZoidMeister Consider my signature line before replying . . . . Supporting Addict

    Dec 4, 2014
    I can't say it any better than the previous posts.

    ozy and Badabing11 like this.
  19. Babboonbobo

    Babboonbobo Avatar is back to my favorite things! Supporting Addict

    Nov 18, 2014
    Still need to acquire an Ed Brown then I’ll be able to let you know what I think.
    Check back next Christmaso_O
    ditto1958, boatdoc, Raven312 and 3 others like this.
  20. gps man

    gps man Well-Known Member

    Nov 7, 2015
    Ed Brown = Happier
    ozy and ZoidMeister like this.

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