Tiger McKee

Shootrite Firearms Academy

Why the 1911?

Image“Why the 1911?” Part of the answer is the 1911’s design, it’s an effective and reliable pistol, and in part my response is personal; the 1911 is the pistol that works best for me.

A major advantage of the 1911 style pistol is the single action trigger. It is the most efficient action out there, and once you learn how to manipulate the trigger it works well for target shooting and fighting.

Another advantage is size, especially the width of the pistol. The thin design fits normal or smaller size hands well. The width also makes it easy to carry concealed, especially with an inside-the-waistband holster.

The handgun’s design makes it index on target naturally. The angle of the grip in relationship to the barrel is just right. When you extend your arms with the hands and wrists in a natural position the 1911 points right on target with the sights falling into alignment with your eyes.

The .45 ACP round works well when it comes to “terminal ballistics.” After all, it was chosen after other calibers proved to be ineffective on the highly motivated, drugged up Moro warriors during the American-Philippine war of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. This is especially true with some of the new bullet designs that can expand up to three-quarters of an inch or more when they open up.

Modifying the 1911, either for function or to make it fit your hands, is an easy process. You can buy a pistol, set up to go, and then fine-tune it for your needs. The basic design is good, and I don’t want or need a full-length guide rod. A thumb safety that allows you to keep the thumb on top of the safety at all times is mandatory, as well as sights you can see, under a variety of lighting conditions. Stocks, or grips, are available in different widths and textures. Triggers come in short, medium, and long, allowing you to position the center pad of the finger on the middle of the trigger for a smooth press straight to the rear. And the list goes on. Just keep in mind any modifications should serve a specific purpose.

Carrying a 1911 is a commitment, similar to a marriage. Once you decide a 1911 is the handgun for you, then that’s what you stick with. It’s a great fightin’ pistol, but it demands more time and effort for practice. They require maintenance and upkeep, kind of like an old Harley with solid lifters and a distributor with points. I’ve been carrying the same 1911 for the last fifteen years. It’s ugly, but works every time. It rattles, probably doesn’t group very accurately locked into a rest, but it shoots better than I can, especially under combative conditions. It took me the first six years to find the ideal combination of parts but now it literally feels like part of my body.

That’s why I carry a 1911.

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December 17, 2011 - Posted by | Auto Pistol

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