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Thread: The 1911, best design ever or not

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    bg18566's Avatar
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    The 1911, best design ever or not

    The 1911 has been around over a hundred years. How does a handgun design survive a century and still be at the top of many peoples list? Why is the 1911 the gun to have, or not have ?

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    Seems to me that the 1911 fulfills all of the requirements of a sidearm, and sometimes most of the requirements of a main weapon.
    1. It's adequately accurate in all of its forms,
    2. It can be serviced, and even repaired, in any location and without tools,
    3. It "fits" most people, including large children and small women,
    4. It's easy to learn to use properly and effectively,
    5. Its recoil is a slow push and quite controllable, given a little preparation,
    6. It uses an adequately powerful cartridge, excellent for close-range offense and defense,
    7. It's easy to reload quickly, given a little instruction and practice,
    8. It is available in many different iterations of various sizes and weights, so an experienced user can choose the ideal version,
    9. It's reliable to a fault, given reasonable maintenance and good-quality ammunition, and
    10. It's ęsthetically pleasing, both inside and out.*

    Negative "Features"?
    1. It is safest when carried in a very-well-designed holster which immobilizes its safety lever,
    2. Many versions are hard for some people to conceal,
    3. A wise user will understand that training is required, to achieve both safety and effectiveness,
    5. In most people's hands, it is a short-range weapon, and
    6. It needs preparation and "tuning," if the user wants to use exotic ammunition (e.g., JHP bullets).

    *The M1911 reminds me of the work of a sculptor named Miguel Berrocal: Its form is ęsthetically pleasing, and detail-stripping it without tools is an interesting puzzle to solve.
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    As Steve points out there are many good things about the 1911..... However as you point out it is at the top of the list for many gun owners but so are other handguns/revolvers....

    What is the best gun to have? It all boils down to personal preference as it is with what ammunition to use, which holster, etc........

    To each their own..........

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    It is a shooting platform that is liked by most folks who have tried a variety of semi-autos. I prefer striker fired plastic handguns for concealed carry, but there is nothing I enjoy shooting more than a 1911.

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    Some things reach perfection at their inception. The 1911 is one of them. What other things can this be said about?
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    As Steve said.

    It does what it was designed to do most excellently.

    And considering it can even stop tanks .... 1983. USMC......

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cait43 View Post
    As Steve points out there are many good things about the 1911..... However as you point out it is at the top of the list for many gun owners but so are other handguns/revolvers....

    What is the best gun to have? It all boils down to personal preference as it is with what ammunition to use, which holster, etc........

    To each their own..........
    This.

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    In order to maintain a measure of objectivity, we would have to agree upon a list of criteria and map that to candidate handguns (I am going to assume this is about handguns since the 1911 was the prime subject of this thread). And even coming up with a list of criteria is going to be hard since individual biases will certainly enter the picture. Knowing all of this, it then must come down to personal preferences, barring obviously flawed products.

    My choice would by the Glock over the 1911. I say this based upon the utter simplicity of the Glock design and it's well known record of reliability and dependability. And no, I am not a Glock fanboy. And yes, I do own 1911's.

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    I might be starting a peeing contest, IMHO for all practical purposes, the best for me is a Glock.

    GW

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    Quote Originally Posted by goldwing View Post
    I might be starting a peeing contest, IMHO for all practical purposes, the best for me is a Glock.

    GW
    Oh, well... We all know about you people who "drive" Hondas.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    Oh, well... We all know about you people who "drive" Hondas.
    I ride my Honda, drive my Toyota and my Dodge. My love for my G19 has risen exponentially in the last twenty-four hours since I completed my Ghost trigger job. I haven't

    been to the range with it yet, but this is going to turn a good accurate gun into one of those "This is a keeper!" guns. (Pardon my exuberance)

    GW......................................

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    There is no 'best'. This is as impossible as people asking what is the 'best' self defense ammo.

    I carry one, but then my 'requirements' are not those of the guy next door.

    It's an impossible question just like questioning what is the 'best' car. I have two: one for around town with my dogs and another for cross country driving.

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    Liking Glocks is not an unforgivable Sin but it is close repent and follow St. John M. Browning! just had to say it.

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    The very best hand gun in the entire world is ( drum roll) the one a person can shoot the best. As most here know I carry a 1911a1 every day and for me there is none better, that is for me. Then there are those who for what ever reason could not hit the side of a barn if they were locked inside the barn with one. Shoot what works best for you and enjoy the banter about what you shoot or carry. even if you are one of those sinners who carry a glock.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tony pasley View Post
    The very best hand gun in the entire world is ( drum roll) the one a person can shoot the best. As most here know I carry a 1911a1 every day and for me there is none better, that is for me. Then there are those who for what ever reason could not hit the side of a barn if they were locked inside the barn with one. Shoot what works best for you and enjoy the banter about what you shoot or carry. even if you are one of those sinners who carry a glock.
    I shall repent (with my Glock on my hip)

    GW
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    Best Design - So Far...

    Two reasons for the Government Model's longevity:

    1. What Steve M1911A1 said early on, and -

    2. Since going on sale to the public, the Model O design has been lengthened, shortened, widened, narrowed, had useless crap added on, had more or less useful crap removed, been altered to every conceivable caliber from .22 long rifle to .460 Rowland - including .38 Special. It has been adorned with nearly every sort of metallic sight ever designed, dreamed up or cobbled AND most types of glass, electronic and psychic powered sights. The results have been blued, nickeled, gold-plated, silver-plated, copper-plated, spray painted, teflon coated and I frankly don't know what all. In the ensuing one hundred and four years since 'birth', it has aftermarket parts made for it by about every manufacturing concern with enough metal working machines to attempt it.

    And it keeps working.

    Special note to Glock lovers.
    Glocks are okay handguns. I know many people love them. When aftermarket Glock parts are made by countless businesses for thirty or forty years after the patents run out, we'll see how well they hold up in real use.
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    When it comes to Glock, all one has to do is look at all the Glock inspired copies on the market today to realize that it is a great design and will probably go down in history along with the 1911 as one of the great designs. But the same can be said for S&M revolvers and Beretta 92 as well. Look at the many Kel-tec P-3AT inspired .380's out there today.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greybeard View Post
    ...But the same can be said for S&M revolvers...[emphasis added]
    So that's what you use 'em for!

    I'd always wondered why people bought revolvers...

    Can you offer us any basic instruction?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    So that's what you use 'em for!

    I'd always wondered why people bought revolvers...

    Can you offer us any basic instruction?
    I can't believe I did that again.............S&W, not S&M.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OldManMontgomery View Post
    Two reasons for the Government Model's longevity:

    1. What Steve M1911A1 said early on, and -

    2. Since going on sale to the public, the Model O design has been lengthened, shortened, widened, narrowed, had useless crap added on, had more or less useful crap removed, been altered to every conceivable caliber from .22 long rifle to .460 Rowland - including .38 Special. It has been adorned with nearly every sort of metallic sight ever designed, dreamed up or cobbled AND most types of glass, electronic and psychic powered sights. The results have been blued, nickeled, gold-plated, silver-plated, copper-plated, spray painted, teflon coated and I frankly don't know what all. In the ensuing one hundred and four years since 'birth', it has aftermarket parts made for it by about every manufacturing concern with enough metal working machines to attempt it.

    And it keeps working.

    Special note to Glock lovers.
    Glocks are okay handguns. I know many people love them. When aftermarket Glock parts are made by countless businesses for thirty or forty years after the patents run out, we'll see how well they hold up in real use.
    Aftermarket "countless" businesses" already do make parts for Glocks and have been for quite some time. And they do work quite well... some better than others just like any aftermarket product in any firearm. Glocks have already proven themselves so that issue is old hat.

    As I said I am not a Glock fanboy, just like I am not a 1911 fanboy or a 92FS fanboy. I admire anything that works well, is of a time-proven design, and is reliable. The argument between Glocks and 1911's will probably go on long after I am dust but this shouldn't take place because these two designs are NOT even in the same category. The 1911 is a single action pistol whereas the Glock is a double action only design. This is similar to comparing oranges and apples.

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