Yeah, I've honestly left the thing for two months at a time and just given it a rinse and kept using it. Haven't died or gotten ill yet!
There is a cleaning guide, I believe it was something along the lines of mix in a few drops of lemon juice with water and rinse it out with that. It said to not put soap into it too I believe.
Regarding the guns you were looking at. How many airsoft guns have you handled? If you haven't had a chance to check many out in person or try firing them see if you can go to the next game in your area. Then you'd at least have the opportunity to try out some of the various guns out there. Regarding your comment on single-stack 1911's, you might want to check out the TM Hi-Cap 5.1 (or 4.3, but the 5.1 is arguably better), it's modeled after a double stack pistol so the grip is larger. They're very reliable and have lots of after market parts available for them.