1911 Noob Questions

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.22LR
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 7:00 pm
OK, what is the deal with the 1911? I see on gun auction sites that it is not an Ithaca specific gun and other manufactures make them. I guess it being such an old design (1911 I assume) the patent must have expired.

I know why a 37, 870, A5 and 500 are big deals, yet no one clones them other than the 870. Can someone give me a history lesson on why the 1911 is a special piece and what its original purpose was (military, police, target) and anything else? They look great and was curious as to its story.

Educate me please.

Thanks
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.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 9:46 pm
i'm no 1911 expert but heres the little i know ..
its a john browning design and the first semi auto handgun the army adopted

the patent has been up for some time and many manufaturers made them for the war effort but colt was the original maker.

the main reason for the popularity is the fact they work , really really good
the quinessential perfect design

.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 10:24 pm
Well this a complicated question but I will do my best to simplify the answer. Around about the turn of the last century the armed forces where armed with 38 caliber revolvers that proved to be rather ineffective against Philippine rebels hopped up on drugs. Semi auto designs where just coming out at the time and our military was looking for a return to a 45 caliber cartridge in a semi auto platform. Trials where held that included a 45 cal Luger, a Savage pistol and a few others that include a Colt / John Browning collaboration. The Colt proved the most promising and after a few modifications it was approved in 1911. During WWI Colt could not produce enough guns and contracts where given to other companies including Remington Union Metallic Cartridge. After WWI a few revisions where made including a shorter trigger, access cuts in the frame to get to the trigger, a shorter hammer, and an extended beaver tail safety. During WWII the same supply issues came about and contracts where given to Springfield Armory (a government arsenal), Remington Rand (type writer company) Ithaca gun, Singer sewing machine to name a few. The design / cartridge combination proved good enough to serve threw the Korean war, the Vietnam war, and the First Gulf war. As you can imagine the pistol developed a following among veterans, civilians, and bad guys alike. When John Dillinger was shot out side of the theater two where found on his person. As time went on the design was adapted to accept other cartridges including the 9mm Luger, 38 Super, 357 Mag to name just a few. The only perceived weaknesses in the design has been weight and the single action only feature. In order to be carried "cocked and locked" the hammer will be in the cocked position with the safety on. Something many police departments frown on. In recent years our special forces have gone back to the pistols due to reliability and knock down power. Currently the demand is to great for one manufacturer and various folks offer there version of the pistol including Colt, Smith & Wesson, Kimber, Ithaca, Taurus, the new Springfield Armory, Auto Ordnance, the current Remington, Ruger, to name just a few. I myself have had a few and would not be with out one. They shoot great and can be counted upon. Not to mention a never ending supply of parts.

.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 4:37 pm
In short. The 1911A1 is effective and it works.

.22LR
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 10:03 pm
As others have said, it was made (under military contract) by a number of manufacturers during WW2.

I'm not sure how the design got out there, but bringbacks from various wars made them popular. Gunsmiths learned that they could be 'tuned' relatively easily to make more accurate guns. This kept happening through the 70's and 80's where some truly superb models or modifications were turned out. Made popular by Bullseye competitions, they quickly gained popularity.

And now, yes. EVERYONE must manufacture one. And the demand is still incredibly high for them. Heavy for their size, but relatively slim, they adorn many hips and nightstand drawers. Modern production and machining techniques mean that many of 'offbrands' still put out a quality piece of steel (or alloy).

It's not the gun for everyone. It's not the end-all of gun design. But it does have a place in history and in more than a few safes and holsters.
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Vendor
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 7:57 pm
highly reliable, easy to repair, and very tunable. They look good and feel good and the weight makes the recoil very manageable, making follow up shots easy. Couple that this a stellar history of service in war and you have a genuinely popular firearm.
--Jim
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Copper BB
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2014 6:44 am
Old thread, but what the heck.

I think to understand the current popularity of and for the 1911, you have to become familiar with the writings of Jeff Cooper. I believe you will find that in the '70s Mr. Cooper began his personal crusade to raise the 1911 to the level we see today. And it surely worked.

--
Mike
Guns ... Protecting you from criminals and governments since 1776.
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.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2014 7:35 am
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M1911_pistol

http://www.m1911.org/

http://forums.1911forum.com/

.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2014 8:19 am
Here's a 70 year old G.I. frame used to make an "enhanced" Combat Commander Model. The newer Colt slide had the newer "lawyer proof" firing pin block which the original frame will not support, (2 pens and about 3 minutes time to remove) and a shaky old war horse was converted into a sleek, reliable, and extremely accurate personal carry gun. Once the parts were assembled and checked for fit, it took about 20 minutes to complete the conversion, (and the same to restore it back to it's original WWII G.I. self). I also have a .22 conversion unit for it, and a full size Springfield Armory slide assy. that routinely out-shoots stock Gold Cup target pistols.

The 1911/1911 A-1 is the most versatile pistol platform ever and will continue to be for years to come as long as they're made to John Browning's original blueprint. By switching parts around, I can convert my 1911 A-1 into several configurations and calibers, including, .22 lr, .30 Liger, several different 9mm's, .38spl, .38 Super, .40S&W. .400 Cor-Bon, 10mm, .45 auto, .455 Webly automatic, and probably a few others. I know of no other pistol with that capability. That's why the 1911 is timeless and made by so many manufacturer's.

Here it is in it's Commander form, and it's original G.I.

Image
Image
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.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2014 9:06 am
I have a pre-Series 80 Combat Commander that was made during the transition to the Series 80. It has a Series 80 serial number on it but does not have the firing pin block. I bought it in the very early 80's and it is still in pristine shape. The bluing that Colt used, along with the polishing is superb.

of course, for the folks on this site the "Holy Grail" is an Ithaca war production 1911.

such as these (none of these are mine, just showing examples)

http://www.gunsinternational.com/Ithaca ... ?cat_id=60

http://www.gunauction.com/buy/12760365/ ... 44-c-and-r

.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2014 12:30 pm
Some handsome prices those guns fetch these days. Seems like just yesterday I could pick up a G.I. .45 for under $100.00.

Mine's a Remington Rand I swapped an M-1 carbine for, even up.
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.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2014 2:48 pm
actually
as cutcher has expanded on before somewhere else..
most military 1911s are a composite of parts.

you can find parts from all the war time manufactures on any one gun.
its sometimes more unusual to find a "whole" gun once it entered the armory

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