I built my 1911 before I built my AR, and i'd say the 1911 was more fun, if not more interesting. If you don't want to go broke on the frame, get one from foster industries when they get back in stock. They are the same company that builds Caspian frames. It's just the ones they sell are very well priced because they are "factory seconds" basically, they are machined the exact same way and in final process are found to have maybe a pinhole under the trigger guard, by the time that I parkerized and gunkoted my frame, you couldn't tell it was there. You can go with a parts kit from Sarco, but you take your chances when ordering through them, they have a really odd system of running things, though a lot of the parts that you get in their kit are ex-auto ordinance. All the tools needed to get mine fitted to GI accuracy were a flat medium grit bastard file, a medium grit round file and a triangular jewlers file (fine), as well as a wheeler engineering lapping compound kit (from brownells for $33 or so), a rubber mallet, staking tool (if you don't go with an integral plunger tube), assorted screwdrivers and punches, a caliper, some elbow grease and time. I plan on making another one and actually taking the extra time and money to get a kart fit in barrel so I can get better than 5" accuracy at 25 yards. But I will still go with a Foster frame. As far as cost for just the parts (not tools) I always tell interested persons to set aside at least $450-500 for a good pistol that would cost you around $750 new from the store. If you want something to duel a gold cup, then you're going to have to have a lot of patience, steady hands and some extra money. If you do get rolling on the project, let us know, there's a few of us here that have build them and can help get you going in the right direction. Here's the one I built. (sights have since been blacked out as per M.Sage's suggestion) View attachment 6754 I decided for the first build I would go with the low cost military grade parts kit from Sarco. Some of the parts that came in the kit were junk, like the hammer, ejector, barrel and springs(sear,mainspring and recoil spring). I added an old colt paddle hammer as I call them, matched it to the sear just right with the jewlers file, trigger pull is clean at about 4 pounds, the barrel is an old springfield armory GI replacement barrel that I had laying around and was better quality and immediate match for lockup (well, close enough). The springs are all wolff replacements, you can tinker with them till you get your function with the weight of bullet your going to use set right. And the ejector is a Springfield Armory extended tuned to throw out the cases in a nice pile. The extractor is an old WWII N.O.S. part that I had laying around, and the barrel bushing is a Fusion match grade bushing fit to the barrel and slide so they glide and don't grind. I know that's a novel, but there you go.