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Shooting & Carrying the 1911 for Accuracy Under Stress

YES this is gonna hurt real bad, and NO you will not continue moving in my direction!

When you absolutely, positively need to remove whole body parts to get the job done right!

Seems there has been a lot of pontificating concerning the old age of the Browning/Colt 1911. They argue that it is an outdated relic, while at the same time comparing it to all manner of half plastic pistols whose design attributes were taken directly from the 1911 and the Browning HP; which of course share many of the same design attributes between them for the obvious reason.

We here at MA of course do not at all agree with any of that.  I mean, how can the meanderings of these plastic part pontificators be taken seriously when the most useful design attributes of their beloved Tupperware weaponry were taken directly from the alleged 1911 relic in the first place. Logic would dictate that for the designers of these plastic plinkers to have actually designed something new and better than the 1911, they would have ACTUALLY had to design something NEW, which of course to date none of them have actually done. 

But wait, I stand corrected! The Glock design team did actually design a totally new "safety" mechanism within the trigger saddle that is not actually a safety!

We of course understand that many people carry but do not see the need for such extreme accuracy capability in their carry pistol. However, when it comes to weapons of any type my personal feeling is, if you plan on having to use them for self defense or in the defense of others, then striving for, or accepting mediocrity is not a sufficient paradigm.

Why? Because when we introduce stress or poor weather conditions such as the conditions I had during this practice session (see target picture below), our accuracy gets worse. So, either build, or have built, or use the weapon that you are the most accurate with, consistently. Wheel guns in most cases will give you that level of accuracy off the shelf. Plastic pistols however most generally will not. Nor are most of them modifiable enough to get you there. 

My standard has always been 1 to 1.5 inches at 30 ft on a stationary target. If the 1911 did not do that, and KEEP that accuracy, I did not own it. 

 
My main carry 1911 above, was built by me personally. Every part specifically chosen based on my long experience with these pistols, slide and frame semi-machined, lapped and fitted along with every other part. Total cost in parts for me was around $900.00.

This Series 70 1911 now has tens of thousands of rounds through it with zero failures due to its functionality. The only parts replaced thus far have been the Briley Spherical barrel bushingthe Sniper Green Duracoat after the original Mil-Spec 2 coating wore away, and the grips.  

The Glock arguments based on reliability alone are many, ridiculous and inadequate. Possibly even legally liable! In my long experience the Glock is the only auto loading pistol of memory that has accidentally shot so many of its users. This latter article was written way back in 2002, and this one is from 2016! So the issue has not changed, nor has their ill-designed pistol.  

Maybe the Glock designers should have copied some Safety design features from the 1911! Since we know that no such accidental issues ever plagued the 1911, even when cops carried them cocked & locked as they should be carried! Only a European gun company could possibly design, and I use that word loosely here, what they deem to be a "safety" literally within the trigger. Which is exactly the design feature that has had cops shooting themselves upon pulling the pistol from their holsters, as well as shooting others accidentally.

Because truly, the Glock has never had any safety at all! Which is why you will find almost all other gun companies designing their pistols with a 1911 style slide-stop safety, or some other tricky design for the sake of being different, not better. Glock users have had to rely on several other after-market gun part designers to come up with their own safety feature for Glock users to install. Here are just two:

Glock Safe-T Block!    

Glock Safe-Draw!       

Now, personally my right index finger is my safety regardless what firearm it holds. However under stress there is no doubt most shooters require one more level of safety to think about and work before firing. The Glock does not have this! The 1911 however does!

Either by carrying the 1911 on half-cock safety, providing the stressed shooter the added move of cocking the hammer all the way back before being able to discharge. Or by carrying the 1911 in its designed carry configuration, which is cocked & locked as depicted in the picture below. This of course renders the stressed shooter both great speed and safety by providing the shooter the ability to both draw the pistol quickly and safely, since its slide-lock is up and positively locked firmly in that position.

As the shooter/officer/operator is drawing his 1911, and while on his way to pointing his 1911 towards his target, and as we are all taught, the stressed shooter in that time frame very purposely drops that slide-stop safety with his thump, having already acquired his target, fires if necessary. When practiced this can happen extremely quickly and always far safer than most other pistol designs. We call this "doing the job right the first time" and John Browning did just that! 

The Point-ability Factor

On this point there can be no equal to the 1911 other than the other John Browning pistol design, namely the browning High-Power. Both the 1911 and H/P still to this day, over 100 years, retain the most important requirement for acquiring and hitting a target quickly and accuracy - Natural Point-ability! 

Both pistols have been designed with very narrow width profiles which affords them their fast point-ability advantage over all the squared off, fat boy frame and slide designs out there. Additionally the 1911 was designed with the perfect frame angle that just fits and points naturally with the human extended arm and hand geometry. I have watched through many years all other pistol makers copying this same angle in their designs. The narrow frame and slide of the 1911 also makes it more easily concealable. The High-Power even more so. So if you want the most naturally pointing Hi-Cap 9mm in existence, I would highly suggest that Browning design. As for the plastic plinkers; I have also owned several and have friends who own several calibers of each kind. Personally, I had other issues with the Glock I did own years ago. The back-strap is far to large, causing me and most others to shoot high all the time. My good friend had his 10mm Glock stock modified to flatten it more like his 1911 back-strap, but it still feels like a baseball bat in your hand. 

All these fat slide plastic pistols in my estimation have horrible pointing characteristics. The point is, no pun intended, that the pistol just needs to point accurately, on target, and without having to LEARN how to make it point accurately. I have found no others that just do this naturally. So, for this the 1911 wins again and does so hands down. 

The "hundreds of thousands of rounds fired" argument for Glocks:

Firstly, no sane military gun fighter, much less law enforcement officer would carry a side arm into battle which has had 100k or 300k rounds fired through it without ever being totally rebuilt or replaced. Therefore that Glock argument is also fodder for tall camp fire tales.  And if you ever find yourself in a zombie apocalypse situation where you need a pistol to shoot that much, I can assure you of two things:

 1. The life expectancy probabilities are thoroughly against you to be sure!

 2. There will be an abundance of less used guns for you to choose from and continue your fight with for the short time you remain able. 

Here is what a well made, finely tuned 1911 will do, and do well for a very long time. 

The following steel target was shot at 45 ft, which has been my new practice range for draw and shoot sitting and standing for about 5 yrs now. All 5 shots were fired as soon as I recovered, which for my 1911's is very fast, although I do not time myself since I am also still human and those times will vary. If you require a base line, just know that I shoot at a mid-range competition level. 

My goal has always been to feel confident in my ability with the 1911 to guarantee shooting a hostage taker in one of his eye's from this distance - Hence the 1.5" or better.  My other goal for fast area shooting is to guarantee 5 center mass shots on five armed assailants within 4.0 seconds or better, especially if they are closer.  Moreover, if your armed assailants are 30 to 50 ft away, and you are using an off the shelf pistol that can only provide you a  3" to 4" group at 30 ft in the best conditions, then more than likely under stress that tool is not going get you there. And it now becomes a liability for all others around the situation. 

Here is a great speed training drill to use: FAST

So then, we can narrow this stress gap by having the most accurate equipment possible, and practicing with it often. I believe this to be the fastest and most economical way for the non-professional or combat hardened shooters to expand their chances of making those needed hits. That is unless you know a fast and economically viable way to gain many years of actual under stress experience in gun fighting, or have the money to spend years in civilian combat training classes. Which of course do not provide the "actual" related stress of imminent death during their training courses.

Same goes for your rifles. You may be an excellent shot when no ones shooting back, but you can heighten your ability by having someone build your rifle to go from 1" grps at 100 yards, to sub 1/2" at 300 yards. Which brings you back to 1" at 100 to 300 under stress, rather than 6" at the same range under stress. Although most people don't tend to preach this religion, it is a most valid way of improving your odds, and should not be over looked or down played. 

Admin MechArmor March 14, 2016 6 tags (show)
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