Thoughts On The 1911

This is a discussion on Thoughts On The 1911 within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I've found the 1911 to be an early twentieth century, or late nineteenth century design, and here we are in the twenty-first century. That to ...

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Thread: Thoughts On The 1911

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    Ex Member Array BikerRN's Avatar
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    Thoughts On The 1911

    I've found the 1911 to be an early twentieth century, or late nineteenth century design, and here we are in the twenty-first century. That to me stands as a testament as to how good the 1911 really is. While I cannot see the future, I can very easily envision the 1911 in some form being around in the next century too. The same cannot be said for revolvers, IMO.

    Look at the Double Action Revolver. While some of the newer, and younger generation like to shoot them for their "cool factor" I don't see many of those people selecting one for defensive usage. That is left to those of us that have grey in our hair and can remember Coke being a drink that came in a glass bottle.

    The J-Frame is another design that has stood the test of time, for now. With all the advances in handguns I see small compact autoloaders being the J-Frames of tomorrow, and the small compact revolver will pass to the relic stage. Today, due to reliability reasons, the J-Frame is still the King of the BUG. The reliability of the smaller autoloading platform has a ways to go, in my opinion, before it is as reliable as the resolver.

    I know many people that have never shot a revolver. The days of those of us that started with revolvers is fast coming to a close, with a few die-hards hanging on for as long as we can. When the new shooters of today are old what will they gravitate to as a connection to their past, and still feel well armed?

    I can can easily envision a polymer 1911 being one of those such guns. It may change some of it's features, like Rails, Reflex Sights, Double Stack Magazines, and various other things, but the linkage to the past, or heritage if you will, I hope will still be seen and noted.

    I have noticed that as I get older, and I presume it is this way for a lot of people, we like to go back to that we knew in our youth, or served us well in our younger days. It is comforting and familiar. I remember the Double Action Revolver on the belt of every Cop on the street, and the County guys packing 1911's. The J-Frame was the always gun off duty for both groups. Thus, when I started shooting, it was with a revolver. Later, when I wanted an autoloader I went to the 1911. My first employer put a Model 64 in my hands to qualify with, as they did with all new HACK's. Today that agency puts a Glock 19 in their hands. So what will those people gravitate to in their years of grey hair?

    Just some thought generating questions. I hope you all can bear with me. Take care and stay safe.

    Biker

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    To us "old guys" the wheel gun still holds a special place in the heart. It's what I cut my teeth on and I still have 4 sitting in the safe. Granted they don't make many trips to the range now. Although I had a fascination with the 1911 I never owned one until a few years ago. All of my semi's were metal guns and still are. With the recent purchase of my DW CBOB the others have found a new home in the safe and it rides my hip 99% of the time. The more I shoot it, the more admiration I have for John Browning and his design.

    Some things are destined to become classics the 57 Chevy, Colt's SAA, Winchester's 1894 and JMB's 1911.
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    kpw
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    I remember the first time I shot a G19. Late 80's at a Caswell's we had in town for a couple years. At the time, it was incredibly light & compact for a gun that held 15 in the mag. I thought it was going to blow up on me and it came as a big surprise how well it handled and how easy it was to shoot well. It was a bunch lighter than the 3" Md. 66 on my hip or the Colt at home. I still didn't buy one because I didn't think they'd hold up. 22 years later with a bunch of much shorter, grey hair, I'm typing this with a 5" Kimber on my hip and a G19 & 686 in the safe. The G19 sees a lot of carry but the 686, not so much. I grew up shooting wheelguns & my dad's 1911. All the cops had revolvers around here and we had cases of Coke and 7up in glass bottles in our house. I'm only 43!
    "In a republic this rule ought to be observed: that the majority should not have the predominant power." -
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    I am slowly getting rid of every semi I own for wheel guns. While much of what you say is true, the wheel is still dollar for dollar more accurate and a power factor that cannot be matched by autos
    Most of the people cutting their teeth on glocks and such will never be premire shots. Its an art and skill most who use only autos will never possess.

    Revolvers rule to the accomplished shooter. Not knocking autos or the 1911, but I will be more than happy to go shot for shot on the range with one.

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    Well, for certain rounds/calibers the revolver is all there will ever be. A prime example is my beloved S&W 460 XVR. I bought that gun because I always wanted a handgun that would drop a T-Rex or a Sasquatch with one shot (properly placed, of course). I don't know of any semis that chamber anything bigger than a measly 44 maggie. As an instructor, I'll always use my Ruger Super Single Six in .22LR as a gun to teach the novices on. That way they don't get too lively with the trigger and can concentrate on the other aspects of proper form. I LIKE my M642 smith not only for it's light weight but the enclosed hammer that doesn't pick up lint and crud from my pocket should I choose that mode instead of a hip holster. If I hafta, I can shoot the 642 from inside the pocket of a jacket and not worry about the action getting all tangled up in the cloth. Not something I'd really like to try but I'd certainly be more comfortable doing that instead of using the auto in the same manner. I think the revolver will ALWAYS have a role in the American gun scene. Just my .02. YMMV.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    kpw
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    Quote Originally Posted by glockman10mm View Post
    I am slowly getting rid of every semi I own for wheel guns. While much of what you say is true, the wheel is still dollar for dollar more accurate and a power factor that cannot be matched by autos
    Most of the people cutting their teeth on glocks and such will never be premire shots. Its an art and skill most who use only autos will never possess.

    Revolvers rule to the accomplished shooter. Not knocking autos or the 1911, but I will be more than happy to go shot for shot on the range with one.
    I kinda understand what your saying but you'd have to define accomplished shooter a little better. Guys like Sevigny, Leatham & gang are pretty accomplished shooters using self shuckers. Accuracy wise, there are 1911s that will hang with the better wheelguns any day of the week.
    "In a republic this rule ought to be observed: that the majority should not have the predominant power." -
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    Even though the Semi-Auto is more effective for most uses there is still a huge amount of use for revolvers.

    To me, revolvers are better for:
    1. Close Combat (because if you shoot someone up against them, the semi-auto might not fully cycle if you are pressing it up to them)
    2. Hunting/Trails because they can carry larger/more powerful ammo aside from the "novelty" semi-autos like the Desert Eagle, Guncraft Industries .50GI and the various 10mms.
    3. Simplicity/Reliability less moving parts mean less things for you to break or mess up.

    I don't have a revolver of my own (yet) but I do intend to buy one someday especially if I do more outdoors stuff once the kids get a little older. Probably a S&W 629 (.44 Mag with 4" barrel) or a Ruger Super Redhawk Alaskan (.454 Casull...not even sure I can handle it ha ha).

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    While I'm pretty much a more modern guy for most of my firearms, I'll never put the tried and true 1911 behind me. It served me well in the armed forces, and I depended on it even after I got out for many years. The basic 1911 to me is a habit. I can go back to it at any time just like it was yesterday and feel completely confident. Too much of an explanation as to why I don't currently own one. Sometimes I question it myself. Life has a way of taking us down new roads. I will agree however that the basic 1911 pistol is still one of the best designs to this day. It's not forgotten by any means coming up on a century later. Not exactly 'old school'...but a battle proven design that I'd trust my life with any time. Pretty much why I had to have a SAO for my current 45ACP pistol. Throughout life we all make decisions depending on circumstances. I can't truly say I'm lost without a true 1911 pistol these days, but I can say I miss it in some way. It's actually the basic foundation for my love of the modern pistol to this day. The basic 1911 pistol will never become a relic IMO. It has changed the world and brought many of our service members home from combat. The true 1911 is a legacy that will continue to live after most of us are gone. As it should be. The variations and the proclaimed upgrades to the basic 1911 or 1911A1 I'm not so fond for certain reasons.

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    Cool

    I carry Glocks on and off the job for now. I gave my S&W 638 to the wife and replaced it with a .380 BUG. Then I found a SP-101 2.25" .357 that was to good to be true price wise and bought it. I have never found a handgun that I can shoot better than the K-Frame Smith. My first police sidearm was a Colt Offical Police in 1968 followed by a S&W Model 10 then a series of S&W 19's and 66's. Finally a 686 before having to move on to the semi-autos that the agencies I worked and work for required. If I can find a S&W 65 3" round butt I will buy it. I sold my 1911's seveal years ago because I was not carrying them. I also sold my P-35 Hi Power for the same reason. I have never found a semi-auto I can shoot better than the Hi Power. A couple of months ago I came across a 1964 T-Series P-35. I bought it. I will carry it more after I retire. For me nothing says handgun more than a revolver and nothing says revolver like a K-Frame. No revolver has the the looks and lines of a K-Frame and no semi-auto has the looks and lines of a 1911 or a Hi Power. The older I get the more I revert back to my first loves.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bpang1 View Post
    Even though the Semi-Auto is more effective for most uses there is still a huge amount of use for revolvers.

    To me, revolvers are better for:
    1. Close Combat (because if you shoot someone up against them, the semi-auto might not fully cycle if you are pressing it up to them)
    2. Hunting/Trails because they can carry larger/more powerful ammo aside from the "novelty" semi-autos like the Desert Eagle, Guncraft Industries .50GI and the various 10mms.
    3. Simplicity/Reliability less moving parts mean less things for you to break or mess up.
    Yeah, but when a revolver goes wrong it can go wrong in spectacular fashion! I once had an extruded primer snag on the back plate of a Smith & Wesson Model 19 and it required a gunsmith to detail strip it to get it UN-FUBAR'D! OTOH, most "jams" on a auto can be solved by the "Tap/Rack/Bang!" methodology. Yeah, I know the extruded primer issue is going to be more rare than the auto type of jam and usually if you get a failure to fire in a revolver you just pull the trigger again for the next round... As far as a body contact shot goes, I'd be pretty confident that any Glock, 1911, Sig or HK would continue to shoot fine without any worry of being fouled with guts and gore. I just don't see that. I also doubt that a second show would be needed after that on THAT target. The hot gases would just open the wound up in such a horrific manner...
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    I've had a sense that perhaps the market for revolvers was steady to slightly increasing, based on observations of several forums, internet auctions, and magazine features. Could be wrong though. I don't see the market for new revolvers as ever fading entirely as long as metallic cartridge arms are current. When ray guns become generally available then all bets are off. Sure, lots of folks are introduced to handgunning these days from behind one of the popular semi-autos, which impacts their thinking regarding appropriate handguns. Apparently though, some are becoming a bit weary of semi-auto idiosyncrasies and are embracing the revolver for a change of pace if nothing else. For all the talk of revolvers going wrong in spectacular fashion, the thinking person can see the dead-certain reliability that is inherent in a quality revolver with which he is familiar and has gained a measure of trust.

    Even though we've had semi-auto pistols for over a century, I still see the current trend of intense consumer infatuation with them as a bit of a fad, especially with folks who "follow the crowd." It must be admitted that there is a lot of "following the crowd" in the firearms field. Some interest is driven by market demands and some is driven by firearms manufacturers and their friends in the firearms press who influence the market. After years of observing firearms and trends it is apparent that the firearms consumer is very suggestible and influenced by whatever is "in fashion" and "fashion" is manipulated by the producers.

    I don't see a single solitary example of a modern semi-auto pistol that can accomplish its intended task better than any of several older designs including the revered 1911. The current generation of semi-autos just manage to accomplish the same thing even though they are engineered to be manufactured more inexpensively. That's ok too as it keeps purchase prices within reach of most all interested shooters. We need more shooters.

    It occurred to me a few years back that I am a bit stuck in the past (ya'think?). Participation in this particular forum went a long way to help me come to that realization. I awakened to the fact that I really wasn't through playing with the firearms that were in fashion 30-40 years ago when I was young and impressionable and that's ok. So, I'll continue to play with them as long as they appeal to me. Plastic, aluminum alloy, and high-tech black finishes just don't appeal at this point in my firearms experience. Give me nice, heavy steel. Many of the stunted and shrunken semi-autos meant for the concealed carry market are just plain silly.

    I have a number of semi-autos but the revolver ratio runs 5 to 1 over semi-autos here. I love my revolvers! I also love full-sized, all steel 1911s and Hi-Powers. Not much interested in anything else semi-auto except for certain collectible designs or models like the Luger, P-38, old Colt automatics, etc.. I have one ol' wretched Kel Tec P3AT which is my nod toward the whole plastic-y, DAO tribe. Hate DAO triggers in any form. Talking about a case of the "Emperor's New Clothes!" That is my opinion of the vaunted expediency of the DAO trigger.

    Of late I've been considering adding a 1911, dedicated for carry use, to the menagerie. I once embraced the 1911 for concealed carry but have spent the past 15 years pretty well wedded to the revolver. I'm thinking of sniffing out a really low mileage, dead-stock, unfooled with, original Colt Series 70 Government Model, shooting it enough to determine its reliability potential, then employing it for some concealed carry duties. My 1911s are old military warhorses that ought to be retired from regular use and the Colt Gold Cup is a "horse of a different color," being especially adapted for the target range and competition.

    The only so-called "new crop" of semi-auto designs that might appeal to me at all are some from the SIG line. If I got caught up on my list of wants in other gun collecting endeavors I could see a P220 or a P226 in my future. I'd also like a .40 S&W of some sort because I'd love to play with handloading the cartridge. A .40 Hi-Power would suit just fine.
    “No possible rapidity of fire can atone for habitual carelessness of aim with the first shot.”

    Theodore Roosevelt, The Wilderness Hunter, 1893

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    The revolver and the 1911, nothing wrong with the classics. They are also two of the pistols on my list: A Colt 1911 and the S&W 686+ with the 3 inch barrel.

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    My first carry weapon (1979) was a 2.5 inch Colt Lawman. In 1985 changed to an S&W 19. In 1988 switched to Colt Delta Elite, and in 1995 went to a Glock 19, which remains my carry weapon today. I love revolvers and 1911s, regret each one that I sold (none in the last 10 years), and continue to buy new ones (not sure why). I wish I could shoot my revolvers as well as my semi autos.
    As far as plastic vs. steel, 1911 vs. DAO, I much prefer Glocks over 1911s for carry.
    My 20 year old son also loves his revolvers, even though he competes with Glocks.

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    RKM
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    First gun I ever shot was a .22 revolver. I don't own a revolver, yet. Someday I do want to get a 3-4" revolver in .44 mag. And a 1911 is coming soon as well.

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    I dream of a Smitty model 29 in my shoulder holster
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