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The M1911, also known as Colt 1911, or Colt Government, is a
single-action A trigger is a mechanism Mechanism may refer to: *Mechanism (engineering) In engineering, a mechanism is a Machine, device that transforms input forces and movement into a desired set of output forces and movement. Mechanisms generally consis ...
, semi-automatic, magazine-fed,
recoil-operated Recoil operation is an operating mechanism used to implement locked- breech, autoloading firearm A firearm is any type of gun designed to be readily carried and used by an individual. The term is legally defined further in different countries ...
pistol A pistol is a handgun, more specifically one with the chamber integral to its gun barrel with its massive bore and the stacked barrel A barrel or cask is a hollow cylindrical container with a bulging center, longer than it is wide. Th ...

pistol
chambered for the
.45 ACP The .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol Automatic Colt Pistol (ACP) denotes various John Moses Browning Cartridge (firearms), cartridge designs primarily used in Colt's Manufacturing Company, Colt and Fabrique Nationale de Herstal semi-automatic pis ...

.45 ACP
cartridge Cartridge may refer to: Media * Broadcast cartridge, used in radio stations * 8-track tape cartridge, a 1960s-1980s music storage format * Compact Cassette, used with sound recording and reproduction and data storage for early microcomputers * ...
. The pistol's formal designation as of 1940 was Automatic Pistol, Caliber .45, M1911 for the original model of 1911 or Automatic Pistol, Caliber .45, M1911A1 for the M1911A1, which was adopted in 1924. The designation changed to Pistol, Caliber .45, Automatic, M1911A1 in the Vietnam War era. Designed by
John Browning John Moses Browning (January 23, 1855 – November 26, 1926) was an American firearm designer who developed many varieties of military and civilian firearms, Cartridge (firearms), cartridges, and gun mechanisms many of which are still in use a ...
, the M1911 is the best-known of his designs to use the
short recoil Recoil operation is an operating mechanism used to implement locked breech, autoloading firearm A firearm is any type of gun A gun is a ranged weapon designed to use a shooting tube ( gun barrel) to launch typically solid projectiles, ...

short recoil
principle in its basic design. The pistol was widely copied, and this operating system rose to become the preeminent type of the 20th century and of nearly all modern centerfire pistols. It is popular with civilian shooters in competitive events such as USPSA,
IDPA The International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA), founded in 1996, is an organization based in Bogata, Texas, that has created a shooting sport based on defensive pistol A pistol is a handgun, more specifically one with the chamber (fi ...
,
International Practical Shooting Confederation The International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) is the world's largest shooting sport Shooting sports is a collective group of competitive sport, competitive and recreational sporting activities involving proficiency tests of accuracy, ...
, and bullseye shooting. Compact variants are popular civilian
concealed carry Concealed carry, or carrying a concealed weapon (CCW), is the practice of carrying a weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict physical damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase ...
weapons in the U.S. because of the design's relatively slim width and the
stopping power Stopping power is the ability of a weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase the efficacy and efficiency of activities such as hunting ...
of the .45 ACP cartridge. The U.S. military procured around 2.7 million M1911 and M1911A1 pistols during its service life. The pistol served as the standard-issue sidearm for the
United States Armed Forces The United States Armed Forces are the Military, military forces of the United States of America. The armed forces consists of six Military branch, service branches: the United States Army, Army, United States Marine Corps, Marine Corps, Uni ...

United States Armed Forces
from 1911 to 1985. It was widely used in
World War I World War I, often abbreviated as WWI or WW1, also known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war A world war is "a war engaged in by all or most of the principal nations of the world". The term is usually reserved for ...

World War I
,
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
, the
Korean War The Korean War (see § Names) was a war fought between North Korea North Korea, officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), is a country in East Asia, constituting the northern part of the Korean Peninsula. It b ...

Korean War
, and the
Vietnam War {{Infobox military conflict , conflict = Vietnam War , partof = the Indochina Wars The Indochina Wars ( vi, Chiến tranh Đông Dương) were a series of wars fought in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled ...
. The M1911A1 was replaced by the adoption of the 9 mm
Beretta M9 The Beretta M9—officially the Pistol, Semiautomatic, 9mm, M9—is the designation for the Beretta 92F The Beretta 92 (also Beretta 96 and Beretta 98) is a series of semi-automatic pistols designed and manufactured by Beretta of Italy. The Ber ...

Beretta M9
pistol as the standard U.S. military sidearm in 1985. However, the U.S. Army did not replace the M1911A1 with the Beretta M9 until October 1986, and due to the M1911's popularity among users has not been completely phased out. Modernized derivative variants of the M1911 are still in use by some units of the
U.S. Army Special Forces The United States Army Special Forces, colloquially known as the "Green Berets" due to their distinctive service headgear Headgear, headwear, or headdress is the name given to any element of clothing which is worn on one's Human head, h ...
, U.S. Marine Corps and the
U.S. Navy ), (unofficial)."''Non sibi sed patriae''" ( en, "Not for self but for country") (unofficial). , colors = Blue and gold  , colors_label = Colors , march = " Anchors Aweigh" ...
.


History


Early history and adaptations

The M1911 pistol originated in the late 1890s as the result of a search for a suitable self-loading (or semi-automatic) pistol to replace the variety of revolvers then in service. The United States was adopting new firearms at a phenomenal rate; several new pistols and two all-new service rifles (the M1892/96/98 Krag and M1895 Navy Lee), as well as a series of revolvers by Colt and
Smith & Wesson Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. (S&W) is an American firearms manufacturer headquartered in Springfield, Massachusetts, Springfield, Massachusetts, United States. Smith & Wesson was founded by Horace Smith (inventor), Horace Smith and Daniel B. We ...
for the Army and Navy, were adopted just in that decade. The next decade would see a similar pace, including the adoption of several more revolvers and an intensive search for a self-loading pistol that would culminate in the official adoption of the M1911 after the turn of the decade. had designed a self-loading
rifle A rifle is a long-barrelled firearm A firearm is any type of gun A gun is a ranged weapon designed to use a shooting tube ( gun barrel) to launch typically solid projectiles, but can also project pressurized liquid (e.g. water gu ...

rifle
in the 1880s, but was preoccupied with
machine gun A machine gun is an auto-firing, rifling, rifled long gun, long-barrel action (firearms)#Autoloading operation, autoloading firearm designed for sustained direct fire with fully powered cartridges. Other automatic firearms such as assault ri ...

machine gun
s. Nevertheless, the application of his principle of using cartridge energy to reload led to several self-loading pistols in 1896. The designs caught the attention of various militaries, each of which began programs to find a suitable one for their forces. In the U.S., such a program would lead to a formal test at the turn of the 20th century. During the end of 1899 and start of 1900, a test of self-loading pistols, including entries from
Mauser Mauser, originally Königliche Waffen Schmieden, is a German . Their line of rifles and s has been produced since the 1870s for the German armed forces. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Mauser designs were also exported and licensed ...

Mauser
(the C96 "Broomhandle"), Mannlicher (the Mannlicher M1894), and Colt (the
Colt M1900 The Colt Model 1900 is a short-recoil operated "self-loading", or semi-automatic .38 caliber handgun introduced by Colt's Manufacturing Company Colt's Manufacturing Company, LLC (CMC, formerly Colt's Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company) is ...
), was conducted. This led to a purchase of 1,000
DWM dwm's xinerama support: tiling on two screens simultaneously dwm is a dynamic, minimalism (computing), minimalist tiling window manager for the X Window System that has influenced the development of several other X window managers, including x ...
Luger pistol The Pistole Parabellum—or Parabellum-Pistole (Pistol Parabellum), commonly known as just Luger—is a toggle-locked recoil-operated semi-automatic pistol A semi-automatic pistol is a type of repeating single- chamber handgun A hand ...
s, chambered in
7.65mm Luger 7.65mm may refer to the following firearms cartridges: * .32 ACP .32 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol Automatic Colt Pistol (ACP) denotes various John Moses Browning Cartridge (firearms), cartridge designs primarily used in Colt's Manufacturing Company ...
, a
bottlenecked cartridge Handloading or reloading is the process of making firearm A firearm is any type of gun designed to be readily carried and used by an individual. The term is legally defined further in different countries (see Legal definitions). The first ...
. During field trials, these ran into some problems, especially with
stopping power Stopping power is the ability of a weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase the efficacy and efficiency of activities such as hunting ...
. Other governments had made similar complaints. Consequently, DWM produced an enlarged version of the round, the
9×19mm Parabellum The 9×19 mm Parabellum, 9 mm Parabellum, or 9 mm Luger is a firearms cartridge that was designed by Georg Luger Georg Johann Luger (March 6, 1849 – December 22, 1923) was an Austria-Hungary, Austrian designer of the famous Luger pis ...
(known in current military parlance as the 9×19mm NATO), a necked-up version of the 7.65 mm round. Fifty of these were tested as well by the
U.S. Army The United States Army (USA) is the land Land is the solid surface of Earth that is not permanently submerged in water. Most but not all land is situated at elevations above sea level (variable over geologic time frames) and consists ma ...
in 1903. American units fighting Tausūg guerrillas in the
Moro Rebellion The Moro Rebellion (1899–1913) was an armed conflict between the Moro people and the United States military during the Philippine–American War. The word "Moro" – which is derived from the Spanish "Moor" – is a term for Muslim p ...
in Sulu during the Philippine–American War using the then-standard
Colt M1892 The Colt M1892 Navy A navy, naval force, or maritime force is the branch of a Nation's armed forces principally designated for naval warfare, naval and amphibious warfare; namely, lake-borne, riverine, littoral zone, littoral, or ocean-borne ...
revolver,
.38 Long Colt The .38 Long Colt, also known as .38 LC, is a black powder Gunpowder, also commonly known as black powder to distinguish it from modern smokeless powder, is the earliest known chemical explosive. It consists of a mixture of sulfur, carbon (in t ...
, found it to be unsuitable for the rigors of , particularly in terms of
stopping power Stopping power is the ability of a weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase the efficacy and efficiency of activities such as hunting ...
, as the Moros had high battle morale and often used drugs to inhibit the sensation of pain. The U.S. Army briefly reverted to using the M1873 single-action revolver in
.45 Colt The .45 Colt, also referred to as .45 Long Colt, .45 LC, or 11.43×33mmR, is a rimmed straight-walled handgun cartridge dating to 1872. It was originally a black-powder revolver .357 Magnum. A revolver (also called a six shooter or a whee ...
caliber, which had been standard during the late 19th century; the heavier bullet was found to be more effective against charging tribesmen. The problems prompted the
Chief of Ordnance The United States Army Ordnance Corps, formerly the United States Army Ordnance Department, is a sustainment branch of the United States Army The United States Army (USA) is the land military branch, service branch of the United States Ar ...
, General
William CrozierWilliam Crozier may refer to: *William Crozier (artillerist) (1855–1942), American general, artillerist and inventor *William Crozier (Scottish artist) (1893–1930), Scottish artist *William Crozier (Irish artist) (1930–2011), Irish artist *Will ...
, to authorize further testing for a new service pistol. Following the 1904 Thompson-LaGarde pistol round effectiveness tests, Colonel John T. Thompson stated that the new pistol "should not be of less than .45 caliber" and would preferably be semi-automatic in operation. This led to the 1906 trials of pistols from six firearms manufacturing companies (namely, Colt, ,
Deutsche Waffen und Munitionsfabriken ''Deutsche Waffen- und Munitionsfabriken '' (German Weapons and Munitions public limited company), known as DWM, was an arms company in created in 1896 when '' & Company'' united its weapons and ammunition production facilities within one compa ...
(DWM), Savage Arms Company, Knoble, Webley, and White-Merrill). Of the six designs submitted, three were eliminated early on, leaving only the Savage, Colt, and
DWM dwm's xinerama support: tiling on two screens simultaneously dwm is a dynamic, minimalism (computing), minimalist tiling window manager for the X Window System that has influenced the development of several other X window managers, including x ...
designs chambered in the new
.45 ACP The .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol Automatic Colt Pistol (ACP) denotes various John Moses Browning Cartridge (firearms), cartridge designs primarily used in Colt's Manufacturing Company, Colt and Fabrique Nationale de Herstal semi-automatic pis ...

.45 ACP
(Automatic Colt Pistol) cartridge. These three still had issues that needed correction, but only Colt and Savage resubmitted their designs. There is some debate over the reasons for DWM's withdrawal—some say they felt there was bias and that the DWM design was being used primarily as a "
whipping boy A whipping boy was a boy educated alongside a prince A prince is a Monarch, male ruler (ranked below a king, grand prince, and grand duke) or a male member of a monarch's or former monarch's family. ''Prince'' is also a title of nobility (oft ...
" for the Savage and Colt pistols,Hallock, Kenneth R. (1980), ''Hallock's .45 Auto Handbook''. though this does not fit well with the earlier 1900 purchase of the DWM design over the Colt and Steyr entries. In any case, a series of field tests from 1907 to 1911 were held to decide between the Savage and Colt designs. Both designs were improved between each round of testing, leading up to the final test before adoption. Among the areas of success for the Colt was a test at the end of 1910 attended by its designer, John Browning. 6000 rounds were fired from a single pistol over the course of 2 days. When the gun began to grow hot, it was simply immersed in water to cool it. The Colt gun passed with no reported malfunctions, while the Savage designs had 37.


Service history

Following its success in trials, the Colt pistol was formally adopted by the Army on March 29, 1911, when it was designated Model of 1911, later changed to Model 1911, in 1917, and then M1911, in the mid-1920s. The Director of Civilian Marksmanship began manufacture of M1911 pistols for members of the
National Rifle Association The National Rifle Association of America (NRA) is a gun rights advocacy group based in the United States. Founded in 1871 to advance rifle marksmanship, the modern NRA has become a prominent gun rights lobbying organization while continuing ...
in August 1912. Approximately 100 pistols stamped "N.R.A." below the serial number were manufactured at Springfield Armory and by Colt. The M1911 was formally adopted by the
U.S. Navy ), (unofficial)."''Non sibi sed patriae''" ( en, "Not for self but for country") (unofficial). , colors = Blue and gold  , colors_label = Colors , march = " Anchors Aweigh" ...
and
Marine Corps Marines, or naval infantry, are typically a military force trained to operate in in support of naval operations. Historically, tasks undertaken by marines have included helping maintain discipline and order aboard the ship (reflecting the natu ...
in 1913. The .45 ACP "Model of 1911 U.S. Army" was used by both US Army Cavalry troops and infantry soldiers during the United States'
Punitive Expedition A punitive expedition is a military journey undertaken to punish a state or any group of persons outside the borders of the punishing state. It is usually undertaken in response to perceived disobedient or morally wrong behavior, either as reven ...
into Mexico against Pancho Villa in 1916.


World War I

By the beginning of 1917, a total of 68,533 M1911 pistols had been delivered to U.S. armed forces by Colt's Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company and the U.S. government's
Springfield Armory The Springfield Armory, located in the city of Springfield, Massachusetts, was the primary center for the manufacture of United States military firearms from 1777 until its closing in 1968. It was the first federal armory and one of the first fa ...

Springfield Armory
. However, the need to greatly expand U.S. military forces and the resultant surge in demand for the firearm in
World War I World War I, often abbreviated as WWI or WW1, also known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war A world war is "a war engaged in by all or most of the principal nations of the world". The term is usually reserved for ...

World War I
saw the expansion of manufacture to other contractors besides Colt and Springfield Armory, including Remington- UMC and
North American Arms North American Arms is a United States company, headquartered in Provo, Utah, that manufactures pocket pistols and mini-revolvers, also called mouse guns. The company was originally named ''Rocky Mountain Arms'' when it was founded in 1972. In 1974 ...
Co. of Quebec. Several other manufacturers were awarded contracts to produce the M1911, including the
National Cash Register Company NCR Corporation, previously known as National Cash Register, is an American software, managed and professional services, consulting and technology company. It manufactures Self-checkout, self-service kiosks, point of sale, point-of-sale terminal ...
, the
Savage Arms Savage Arms is an American gunmaker based in Westfield, Massachusetts Westfield is a city in Hampden County, Massachusetts, Hampden County, in the Pioneer Valley of western Massachusetts, United States. Westfield was first settled in 1660. It i ...
Company, the Caron Brothers Manufacturing of Montreal, the Burroughs Adding Machine Co.,
Winchester Repeating Arms Company The Winchester Repeating Arms Company was a prominent American maker of repeating rifle, repeating firearms, located in New Haven, Connecticut. The Winchester brand is today owned by the Olin Corporation and the name is used under license by tw ...
, and the
Lanston Monotype Company Monotype Imaging Holdings Inc., founded as Lanston Monotype Machine Company in 1887 in Philadelphia Philadelphia, colloquially Philly, is a city in the state of Pennsylvania in the United States. It is the sixth-most populous city in the ...
, but the signing of the Armistice resulted in the cancellation of the contracts before any pistols had been produced.


Interwar changes

Battlefield experience in World War I led to some more small external changes, completed in 1924. The new version received a modified type classification, M1911A1, in 1926 with a stipulation that M1911A1s should have serial numbers higher than 700,000 with lower serial numbers designated M1911. The M1911A1 changes to the original design consisted of a shorter trigger, cutouts in the frame behind the trigger, an arched mainspring housing, a longer grip safety spur (to prevent hammer bite), a wider front sight, a shortened hammer spur, and simplified grip checkering (eliminating the "Double Diamond" reliefs). These changes were subtle and largely intended to make the pistol easier to shoot for those with smaller hands. No significant internal changes were made, and parts remained interchangeable between the M1911 and the M1911A1. Working for the U.S. Ordnance Office, David Marshall Williams developed a .22 training version of the M1911 using a floating chamber to give the .22 long rifle rimfire recoil similar to the .45 version. As the Colt Service Ace, this was available both as a pistol and as a conversion kit for .45 M1911 pistols. Before World War II, 500 M1911s were produced under license by the Norwegian arms factory '' Kongsberg Vaapenfabrikk'', as ''Automatisk Pistol Model 1912''. Then, production moved to a modified version designated ''Pistol Model 1914'' and unofficially known as "
Kongsberg Colt The Kongsberg Colt is a nickname used for Colt M1911 The M1911, also known as the Colt 1911, or the Colt Government, is a single-action, semi-automatic, magazine-fed, recoil-operated pistol A pistol is a handgun, more specifically one w ...

Kongsberg Colt
". The Pistol M/1914 is noted for its unusual extended slide stop which was specified by Norwegian ordnance authorities. 22,000 were produced between 1914 and 1940 but production continued after the German occupation of Norway in 1940 and 10,000 were produced for the German armed forces as ''Pistole 657 (n)''. Between 1927 and 1966, 102,000 M1911 pistols were produced as ''Sistema Colt Modelo 1927'' in
Argentina Argentina (), officially the Argentine Republic ( es, link=no, República Argentina), is a country located mostly in the southern half of South America South America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasse ...

Argentina
, first by the . A similar gun, the Ballester–Molina, was also designed and produced. The M1911 and M1911A1 pistols were also ordered from Colt or produced domestically in modified form by several other nations, including Brazil (M1937 contract pistol), Mexico (M1911 Mexican contract pistol and the Obregón pistol), and Spain (private manufacturers
Star A star is an astronomical object consisting of a luminous spheroid of plasma Plasma or plasm may refer to: Science * Plasma (physics), one of the four fundamental states of matter * Plasma (mineral) or heliotrope, a mineral aggregate * Quark ...
and
Llama The llama (; ) (''Lama glama'') is a domesticated South American camelid, widely used as a List of meat animals, meat and pack animal by Inca empire, Andean cultures since the Pre-Columbian era. Llamas are social animals and live with othe ...
).


World War II

World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
and the years leading up to it created a great demand. During the war, about 1.9 million units were procured by the U.S. Government for all forces, production being undertaken by several manufacturers, including
Remington Rand Remington Rand was an early American business machine manufacturer, best known originally as a typewriter Video showing the operation of a typewriter A typewriter is a mechanical Mechanical may refer to: Machine * Mechanical system A ...
(900,000 produced), Colt (400,000),
Ithaca Gun Company The Ithaca Gun Company is a manufacturer of shotguns and rifles originally established in Ithaca, New York in 1880. History Over the years, Ithaca made numerous firearms, most notably the Ithaca Flues double barrel shotgun and the Ithaca 37 shotg ...
(400,000),
Union Switch & Signal Union Switch and Signal Inc. (commonly referred to as US&S) was an United States, American company based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which focused on railway signaling equipment, systems and services. The company was acquired by Ansaldo STS (from 2 ...
(50,000), and
Singer Singing is the act of producing musical sounds with the voice. A person who sings is called a singer or vocalist (in jazz and popular music). Singers perform music (arias, recitatives, songs, etc.) that can be sung accompaniment, with or a capp ...
(500). New M1911A1 pistols were given a parkerized metal finish instead of bluing, and the wood grip panels were replaced with panels made of brown plastic. The M1911A1 was a favored small arm of both US and allied military personnel during the war, in particular, the pistol was prized by some British commando units and Britain's highly covert
Special Operations Executive The Special Operations Executive (SOE) was a secret British World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a World war, global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved World War II by ...
, as well as South African Commonwealth forces. The 1911A1 pistol was produced in very large quantities during the war. At the end of hostilities the government cancelled all contracts for further production and made use of existing stocks of weapons to equip personnel. Many of these weapons had seen service use, and had to be rebuilt and refinished prior to being issued. From the mid-1920s to the mid-1950s thousands of 1911s and 1911A1s were refurbished at U.S. arsenals and service depots. These rebuilds consisted of anything from minor inspections to major overhauls. Pistols that were refurbished at government arsenals will usually be marked on the frame/receiver with the arsenal's initials, such as RIA for Rock Island Armory or SA for Springfield Armory. Among collectors today, the Singer-produced pistols in particular are highly prized, commanding high prices even in poor condition.


General Officer's Model

From 1943 to 1945 a fine-grade russet-leather M1916 pistol belt set was issued to some generals in the US Army. It was composed of a leather belt, leather enclosed flap-holster with braided leather tie-down leg strap, leather two-pocket magazine pouch, and a rope lanyard. The metal buckle and fittings were in gilded brass. The buckle had the seal of the U.S. on the center (or "male") piece and a laurel wreath on the circular (or "female") piece. The pistol was a standard-issue M1911A1 that came with a cleaning kit and three magazines. From 1972 to 1981 a modified M1911A1 called the RIA M15 General Officer's Model was issued to general officers in the US Army and US Air Force. From 1982 to 1986 the regular M1911A1 was issued. Both came with a black leather belt, open holster with retaining strap, and a two-pocket magazine pouch. The metal buckle and fittings were similar to the M1916 General Officer's Model except it came in gold metal for the Army and in silver metal for the Air Force.


Post–World War II usage

After World War II, the M1911 continued to be a mainstay of the U.S. Armed Forces in the
Korean War The Korean War (see § Names) was a war fought between North Korea North Korea, officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), is a country in East Asia, constituting the northern part of the Korean Peninsula. It b ...

Korean War
and the
Vietnam War {{Infobox military conflict , conflict = Vietnam War , partof = the Indochina Wars The Indochina Wars ( vi, Chiến tranh Đông Dương) were a series of wars fought in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled ...
, where it was used extensively by . It was used during
Desert Storm The Gulf War was a war waged by coalition forces from 35 nations led by the United States against Iraq Iraq ( ar, ٱلْعِرَاق, '; ku, عێراق '), officially the Republic of Iraq ( ar, جُمْهُورِيَّة ٱلْعِر ...
in specialized U.S. Army units and , and has seen service in both
Operation Iraqi Freedom The Iraq WarThe conflict is also known as the Second Gulf War or the Third Gulf War by those who consider the Iran–Iraq War , commander1 = Ruhollah Khomeini , commander2 = , units1 = see Order of battle duri ...
and
Operation Enduring Freedom Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) was the official name used by the U.S. government The federal government of the United States (U.S. federal government) is the national government of the United States The United States of Amer ...
, with U.S. Army Special Forces Groups and Marine Corps Force Reconnaissance Companies. However, by the late 1970s, the M1911A1 was acknowledged to be showing its age. Under political pressure from Congress to standardize on a single modern pistol design, the
U.S. Air Force The United States Air Force (USAF) is the air File:Atmosphere gas proportions.svg, Composition of Earth's atmosphere by volume, excluding water vapor. Lower pie represents trace gases that together compose about 0.043391% of the atmosphe ...

U.S. Air Force
ran a
Joint Service Small Arms Program The Joint Service Small Arms Program, abbreviated JSSAP, was created to coordinate weapon standardization between the various United States armed service branches. Walther P88 First Project - XM9 Procurement In 1962, the Air Force adopted t ...
to select a new semi-automatic pistol using the
NATO The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO, ; french: Organisation du traité de l'Atlantique nord, ), also called the North Atlantic Alliance, is an intergovernmental military alliance A military alliance is a formal agreement betwe ...
-standard 9 mm Parabellum pistol cartridge. After trials, the Beretta 92S-1 was chosen. The Army contested this result and subsequently ran its own competition in 1981, the trials, eventually leading to the official adoption of the
Beretta 92F The Beretta 92 (also Beretta 96 and Beretta 98) is a series of semi-automatic pistol A semi-automatic pistol is a type of repeating firearm, repeating single-chamber (firearms), chamber handgun (pistol) that automatically cycles its action ...

Beretta 92F
on January 14, 1985. By the late 1980s production was ramping up despite a controversial XM9 retrial and a separate XM10 reconfirmation that was boycotted by some entrants of the original trials, cracks in the frames of some pre-M9 Beretta-produced pistols, and despite a problem with slide separation using higher-than-specified-pressure rounds that resulted in injuries to some U.S. Navy special operations operatives. This last issue resulted in an updated model that includes additional protection for the user, the 92FS, and updates to the ammunition used. During the
Gulf War The Gulf War was a war waged by coalition forces The term "coalition" is the denotation for a group formed when two or more people, factions, states, political parties, militaries etc. agree to work together temporarily in a partnership t ...
of 1990–1991, M1911A1s were deployed with reserve component U.S. Army units sent to participate in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. By the early 1990s, most M1911A1s had been replaced by the
Beretta M9 The Beretta M9—officially the Pistol, Semiautomatic, 9mm, M9—is the designation for the Beretta 92F The Beretta 92 (also Beretta 96 and Beretta 98) is a series of semi-automatic pistols designed and manufactured by Beretta of Italy. The Ber ...

Beretta M9
, though a limited number remain in use by special units. The U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) in particular were noted for continuing the use of M1911 pistols for selected personnel in MEU(SOC) and reconnaissance units (though the USMC also purchased over 50,000 M9 pistols.) For its part, the
United States Special Operations Command The United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM or SOCOM) is the unified combatant command A unified combatant command (CCMD), also referred to as a combatant command, is a joint military command A command in military terminology ...
(USSOCOM) issued a requirement for a
.45 ACP The .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol Automatic Colt Pistol (ACP) denotes various John Moses Browning Cartridge (firearms), cartridge designs primarily used in Colt's Manufacturing Company, Colt and Fabrique Nationale de Herstal semi-automatic pis ...

.45 ACP
pistol in the Offensive Handgun Weapon System (OHWS) trials. This resulted in the Heckler & Koch OHWS becoming the MK23 Mod 0 Offensive Handgun Weapon System (itself being heavily based on the 1911's basic field strip), beating the Colt OHWS, a much-modified M1911. Dissatisfaction with the stopping power of the 9 mm Parabellum cartridge used in the Beretta M9 has actually promoted re-adoption of pistols based on the .45 ACP cartridge such as the M1911 design, along with other pistols, among USSOCOM units in recent years, though the M9 has been predominant both within SOCOM and in the U.S. military in general. Both U.S. Army Special Forces Units and SFOD-D continue to use modernized M1911s.


Design

Browning's basic M1911 design has seen very little change throughout its production life. The basic principle of the pistol is recoil operation. As the expanding combustion gases force the bullet down the barrel, they give reverse momentum to the slide and barrel which are locked together during this portion of the firing cycle. After the bullet has left the barrel, the slide and barrel continue rearward a short distance. At this point, a link pivots the rear of the barrel down, out of locking recesses in the slide, and the barrel is stopped by making contact with the lower barrel lugs against the frame. As the slide continues rearward, a claw extractor pulls the spent casing from the firing chamber and an ejector strikes the rear of the case, pivoting it out and away from the pistol through the ejection port. The slide stops its rearward motion then, and is propelled forward again by the recoil spring to strip a fresh cartridge from the magazine and feed it into the firing chamber. At the forward end of its travel, the slide locks into the barrel and is ready to fire again. However, if the fired round was the last round in the magazine, the slide will lock in the rearward position, which notifies the shooter to reload by ejecting the empty magazine and inserting a loaded magazine, and facilitates (by being rearwards) reloading the chamber, which is accomplished by either pulling the slide back slightly and releasing, or by pushing down on the slide stop, which releases the slide to move forward under spring pressure, strip a fresh cartridge from the magazine and feed it into the firing chamber. There are no fasteners of any type in the 1911 design, excepting the grip screws. The main components of the gun are held in place by the force of the main spring. The pistol can be "field stripped" by partially retracting the slide, removing the slide stop, and subsequently removing the barrel bushing. Full disassembly (and subsequent reassembly) of the pistol to its component parts can be accomplished using several manually removed components as tools to complete the disassembly. The military mandated a grip safety and a manual safety. A grip safety, sear (firearm), sear disconnect, slide stop, half cock position, and manual safety (located on the left rear of the frame) are on all standard M1911A1s. Several companies have developed a safety (firearms), firing pin block safety. Colt's 80 series uses a trigger operated one and several other manufacturers, including Kimber and Smith & Wesson, use a Swartz firing-pin safety, which is operated by the grip safety.Davis and Raynor(1976), ''Safe Pistols Made Even Safer'', American Rifleman, Jan. 1976 Language cautioning against pulling the trigger with the second finger was included in the initial M1911 manual and later manuals up to the 1940s. The same basic design has been offered commercially and has been used by other militaries. In addition to the .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol), models chambered for .38 Super,
9×19mm Parabellum The 9×19 mm Parabellum, 9 mm Parabellum, or 9 mm Luger is a firearms cartridge that was designed by Georg Luger Georg Johann Luger (March 6, 1849 – December 22, 1923) was an Austria-Hungary, Austrian designer of the famous Luger pis ...
, 7.65mm Parabellum, 9mm Steyr, .400 Corbon, and other cartridges were offered. The M1911 was developed from earlier Colt semi-automatic designs, firing rounds such as .38 ACP. The design beat out many other contenders during the government's selection period, during the late 1890s and early 1900s, up to the pistol's adoption. The M1911 officially replaced a range of revolvers and pistols across branches of the U.S. armed forces, though a number of other designs have seen use in certain niches. Despite being challenged by newer and lighter weight pistol designs in .45 caliber, such as the Glock#.45 ACP, Glock 21, the SIG Sauer P220, the HS2000, Springfield XD and the Heckler & Koch USP, the M1911 shows no signs of decreasing popularity and continues to be widely present in various competitive matches such as those of USPSA, International Defensive Pistol Association, IDPA, International Practical Shooting Confederation, IPSC, and Bullseye (shooting competition), Bullseye.


Versions


MEU(SOC) pistol

Marine Expeditionary Units formerly issued M1911s to U.S. Marine Corps Force Reconnaissance, Force Recon units. Hand-selected Colt M1911A1 frames were gutted, deburred, and prepared for additional use by the USMC Precision Weapon Section (PWS) at Marine Corps Base Quantico. They were then assembled with after-market grip safeties, ambidextrous thumb safeties, triggers, improved high-visibility sights, accurized barrels, grips, and improved Wilson magazines. These hand-made pistols were tuned to specifications and preferences of end users.Johnston, Gary Paul.(2004)"One Good Pistol", ''Soldier of Fortune Magazine'', December 2004, 62–67 In the late 1980s, the Marines laid out a series of specifications and improvements to make Browning's design ready for 21st-century combat, many of which have been included in MEU(SOC) pistol designs, but design and supply time was limited. Discovering that the Los Angeles Police Department was pleased with their special Kimber Manufacturing, Kimber M1911 pistols, a single source request was issued to Kimber for just such a pistol despite the imminent release of their Kimber Custom, TLE/RLII models.Rogers, Patrick A.(2003)"Marines New SOCOM Pistol", ''SWAT Magazine'', December 2003, 52–57 Kimber shortly began producing a limited number of what would be later termed the Interim Close Quarters Battle pistol (Kimber Custom, ICQB). Maintaining the simple recoil assembly, 5-inch barrel (though using a stainless steel match grade barrel), and internal extractor, the ICQB is not much different from Browning's original design. In July 2012, the U.S. Marines placed a $22.5 million order with Colt for 12,000 M1911 pistols for United States Marine Corps Special Operations Capable Forces, MEU(SOC) forces. The new 1911 was designated M45A1 or "Close Quarters Battle Pistol" CQBP. The M45A1 features a dual recoil spring assembly, Picatinny rails and is cerakoted tan in color. M45A1 pistols continue to see usage today with USMC Force Recon Battalions, in addition to other specialized USMC units.


Civilian models

* Colt Commander: In 1949 Colt began production of the Colt Commander, an aluminum-framed 1911 with a 4 ¼ inch barrel and a rounded hammer. It was developed in response to an Army requirement issued in 1949, for a lighter replacement for the M1911 pistol, for issue to officers. In 1970, Colt introduced the all-steel "Colt Combat Commander", with an optional model in satin nickel. To differentiate between the two models, the aluminum-framed model was renamed the "Lightweight Commander”. * Colt Government Mk. IV Series 70 (1970–1983): Introduced the accurized Split Barrel Bushing (collet bushing). The first 1000 prototypes in the serial number range 35800NM – 37025NM were marked BB on the barrel and the slide. Commander-sized pistols retained the solid bushing. * Colt Government Mk. IV Series 80 (1983–present): Introduced an internal firing pin safety and a new half-cock notch on the sear; pulling the trigger on these models while at half-cock will cause the hammer to drop. Models after 1988 returned to the solid barrel bushing due to concerns about breakages of collet bushings. * Colt Gold Cup National Match 1911/Mk. IV Series 70/Mk. IV Series 80 MKIV/Series 70 Gold Cup 75th Anniversary National Match/Camp Perry 1978. Limited to 200 pistols. (1983–1996) Gold Cup MKIV Series 80 National Match – .45 ACP, Colt-Elliason adjustable rear sight, fully adjustable Bomar-Style rear sight, target post front sight, spur hammer, wide target trigger, lowered and flared ejection port, National Match barrel, beveled top slide, wrap-around rubber stocks with nickel medallion. * Colt 1991 Series (1991–2001 ORM; 2001–present NRM): A hybrid of the M1911A1 military model redesigned to use the slide of the Mk. IV Series 80; these models aimed at providing a more "mil-spec" pistol to be sold at a lower price than Colt's other 1911 models in order to compete with imported pistols from manufacturers such as Springfield Armory and Norinco. The 1991–2001 model used a large "M1991A1" roll mark engraved on the slide. The 2001 model introduced a new "Colt's Government Model" roll mark engraving. The 1991 series incorporates full-sized blued and stainless models in either .45 ACP or .38 Super, as well as blued and stainless Commander models in .45 ACP.


Custom models

Since its inception, the M1911 has lent itself to easy customization. Replacement sights, grips, and other aftermarket accessories are the most commonly offered parts. Since the 1950s and the rise of competitive pistol shooting, many companies have been offering the M1911 as a base model for major customization. These modifications can range from changing the external finish, checkering the frame, to hand fitting custom hammers, triggers, and sears. Some modifications include installing compensators and the addition of accessories such as tactical lights and even scopes. A common modification of John Browning's design is to use a full-length guide rod that runs the full length of the recoil spring. This adds weight to the front of the pistol, but does not increase accuracy, and does make the pistol slightly more difficult to disassemble. Custom guns can cost over $5,000 and are built from scratch or on existing base models. The main companies offering custom M1911s are: Dan Wesson Firearms, Ed Brown, Les Baer, Nighthawk Custom, Springfield Armory, Inc., Springfield Custom Shop, STI International, and Wilson Combat. IPSC models are offered by BUL Armory, Strayer Voigt Inc (Infinity Firearms), and STI International.


Users


Current users in the U.S.

Many military and law enforcement organizations in the U.S. and other countries continue to use (often modified) M1911A1 pistols including Los Angeles Police Department SWAT and S.I.S., the FBI Hostage Rescue Team, FBI regional SWAT teams, and 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment—Delta (Delta Force). The M1911A1 is popular among the general public in the U.S. for practical and recreational purposes. The pistol is commonly used for concealed carry in the United States, concealed carry thanks in part to a single-stack magazine (which makes for a thinner pistol that is, therefore, easier to conceal), personal defense, target shooting, and competition as well as collections. Numerous aftermarket accessories allow users to customize the pistol to their liking. There are a growing number of manufacturers of M1911-type pistols and the model continues to be quite popular for its reliability, simplicity, and patriotic appeal. Various tactical, target and compact models are available. Price ranges from a low end of around $400 for basic pistols imported from the Philippines or Turkey (Armscor (Philippines), Armscor, Tisas, Rock Island Armory, Girsan, STI Spartan, Seraphim Armoury) to more than $4,000 for the best competition or tactical versions (Wilson Combat, Ed Brown, Les Baer, Nighthawk Custom, and STI International). Due to an increased demand for M1911 pistols among Army Special Operations units, who are known to field a variety of M1911 pistols, the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit began looking to develop a new generation of M1911s and launched the M1911-A2 project in late 2004. The goal was to produce a minimum of seven variants with various sights, internal and external extractors, flat and arched mainspring housings, integral and add-on magazine wells, a variety of finishes and other options, with the idea of providing the end-user a selection from which to select the features that best fit their missions. The AMU performed a well-received demonstration of the first group of pistols to the Marine Corps at Quantico and various Special Operations units at Ft. Bragg and other locations. The project provided a feasibility study with insight into future projects. Models were loaned to various Special Operations units, the results of which are classified. An RFP was issued for a Joint Combat Pistol but it was ultimately canceled. Currently units are experimenting with an M1911 pistol in .40 S&W, which will incorporate lessons learned from the A2 project. Ultimately, the M1911A2 project provided a testbed for improving existing M1911s. An improved M1911 variant becoming available in the future is a possibility. The Springfield Custom Professional Model 1911A1 pistol is produced under contract by Springfield Armory for the FBI regional SWAT teams and the Hostage Rescue Team. This pistol is made in batches on a regular basis by the Springfield Custom Shop, and a few examples from most runs are made available for sale to the general public at a selling price of approximately US$2,700 each.


International users

* The Brazilian company IMBEL (''Indústria de Material Bélico do Brasil'') still produces the pistol in several variants for civilian, military and law enforcement uses in .45 ACP, .40 S&W, .380 ACP and 9 mm calibers. IMBEL also produces for US civilian market as the supplier to Springfield Armory. * The Canadian company Seraphim Armoury brands Filipino manufactured pistols in several models for domestic and export use. Pistols are available in .45 ACP and 9 mm calibers for civilian, military and law enforcement use. * A Chinese Arms manufacturer, Norinco, exports a clone of the M1911A1 for civilian purchase as the M1911A1 and the high-capacity NP-30, as well 9mm variants the NP-28 and NP-29. China has also manufactured conversion kits to chamber the 7.62×25mm Tokarev round following the
Korean War The Korean War (see § Names) was a war fought between North Korea North Korea, officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), is a country in East Asia, constituting the northern part of the Korean Peninsula. It b ...

Korean War
. : As of 2013, the pistol is made under license instead of copying with Colt manufacturing machinery, due to an agreement between Norinco and Colt in order to stop Norinco from producing the Norinco CQ rifle. Importation into the United States was blocked by trade rules in 1993 but Norinco still manages to import the weapon into Canada and successfully adopted by IPSC shooters, gunsmiths and firearms enthusiasts there because of the cheaper price of the pistol than the other M1911s. * The German ''Volkssturm'' used captured M1911s at the end of World War II under the weapon code P.660(a), in which the letter 'a' refers to "Amerika", the weapon's country of origin. * Norway used the
Kongsberg Colt The Kongsberg Colt is a nickname used for Colt M1911 The M1911, also known as the Colt 1911, or the Colt Government, is a single-action, semi-automatic, magazine-fed, recoil-operated pistol A pistol is a handgun, more specifically one w ...

Kongsberg Colt
which was a license-produced variant and is identified by the unique slide catch. Many Spanish firearms manufacturers produced pistols derived from 1911, such as the Star Bonifacio Echeverria, STAR Model B, the Astra-Unceta y Cia SA, ASTRA 1911PL, and the Llama Firearms, Llama Model IX, to name just a few. * Argentine Navy received 1,721 M1911 between 1914 and 1919. 21,616 were received for Argentine Armed Forces between 1914 and 1941. Later, some ex-US Navy Colts were transferred with ex-US ships. Argentina produced under license some 102,494 M1911A1s as ''Model 1927 Sistema Colt'', which eventually led to production of the cheaper Ballester–Molina, which resembles the 1911. * The Armed Forces of the Philippines issues Mil-spec M1911A1 pistols as a sidearm to the special forces, military police, and officers. These pistols are mostly produced by Colt, though some of them are produced locally by Armscor (Philippines), Armscor, a Philippine company specialized in making 1911-style pistols. * The Indonesian Army issued a locally produced version of the Colt M1911A1, chambered in .45 ACP along with the Pindad P1, the locally manufactured Browning Hi-Power pistol as the standard-issue sidearm. * In the 1950s, the Republic of China Army (Taiwan) used original M1911A1s, and the batches are now still used by some forces. In 1962, Taiwan copied the M1911A1 as the ''T51'' pistol, and it saw limited use in the Army. After that, the T51 was improved and introduced for export as the ''T51K1''. Now the pistols in service are replaced by locally-made Beretta 92 pistols- the T75 pistol. * The Royal Thai Army and Royal Thai Police uses the Type 86, the Thai copy of the M1911 chambered in the .45 ACP round,'' Small Arms Illustrated'', 2010. * The Turkish Land Forces uses "MC 1911" Girsan made copy of M1911. * Numbers of Colt M1911s were used by the Royal Navy as sidearms during World War I in .455 Webley, .455 Webley Automatic caliber. The pistols were then transferred to the Royal Air Force where they saw use in limited numbers up until the end of World War II as sidearms for aircrew in event of bailing out in enemy territory. The weapon also found use among the British airborne, British Commando, commandos, Special Air Service, and
Special Operations Executive The Special Operations Executive (SOE) was a secret British World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a World war, global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved World War II by ...
* Some units of the South Korean Air Force still use these original batches as officers' sidearms.


Current

* : 16,880 received, mostly between 1937 and 1941. The Brazilian Army uses a version of the M1911 developed by IMBEL chambered in 9×19mm Parabellum and designated ''M973''. * Citing * * * * * used by both Sa'ka Forces and Unit 777 * * * : Used by Police Special Forces. * * * * * * : Lithuanian Armed Forces * : In service with ''Pasukan Gerak Khas, PGK'' special forces of the Royal Malaysian Police * : 5,400 M1911 and M1911A1s were acquired between 1922 and 1941. * * : Local copies used by North Korean Special forces and Presidential Guard. * * * (Taiwan) * Diez, Octavio (2000). ''Armament and Technology: Handguns''. Lema Publications, S.L. . * : Made under license by S&T Daewoo and used by Republic of Korea Air Force as officers' sidearms. * : Made under license. Known as the "Type 86" pistol. * * : Former standard-issue service pistol of the U.S. Armed forces and is in use by some United States special operations forces, US Special Operations soldiers. The pistol remains in service with various law enforcement agencies across the U.S. * : Local copies chambered in 7.62×25mm Tokarev & Captured US M1911A1s in
.45 ACP The .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol Automatic Colt Pistol (ACP) denotes various John Moses Browning Cartridge (firearms), cartridge designs primarily used in Colt's Manufacturing Company, Colt and Fabrique Nationale de Herstal semi-automatic pis ...

.45 ACP
used by the Viet Cong and the North Vietnamese Army during
Vietnam War {{Infobox military conflict , conflict = Vietnam War , partof = the Indochina Wars The Indochina Wars ( vi, Chiến tranh Đông Dương) were a series of wars fought in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled ...
. *


Former

* : Manufactured M1911 pistols under license from 1945 to 1966 by Dirección General de Fabricaciones Militares. * * * : In both World Wars, Canadian officers had the option of privately purchasing their own sidearm and the M1911/M1911A1 was a popular choice. The joint Canadian-US First Special Service Force (aka "The Devil's Brigade") also used American infantry weapons, including the M1911A1. * * * *: replaced by Heckler & Koch USP, USP pistols * : used by the Kagnew Battalion * : About 51,000 bought by Russian military from United States in years 1915–1917. But only relatively small number of these captured pistols ended up to hands of authorities after Finnish Civil War. Finnish military had about 120 pistols during World War 2, most of them were issued to field army. * : 5,500 M1911 received during World War I, especially for Tanks in World War I, tank units, officers and trench raiders. Free French Forces received 19,325 Colts. Known in French service as ''Pistolet automatique 11 mm 4 (C.45)'' (Automatic pistol 11.4mm (calibre .45)). Both M1911 and M1911A1 pistols were used. * * : Received M1911A1s from US during Laotian Civil War (1955-1975). * : In service with 1st Artillery Battalion 1963–1967. * : Used captured pistols during World War II. * : Used during WWII * : After
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
, the Japan Self-Defense Forces and Law enforcement in Japan, Police were provided 101,700 M1911A1s from the US. These were used until the 1980s. * : 50 received during World War I *: 700 received during World War I Produced under license as
Kongsberg Colt The Kongsberg Colt is a nickname used for Colt M1911 The M1911, also known as the Colt 1911, or the Colt Government, is a single-action, semi-automatic, magazine-fed, recoil-operated pistol A pistol is a handgun, more specifically one w ...

Kongsberg Colt
. * : Polish Armed Forces in the West used pistols during World War II. * : 51,000 purchased between February 1916 and January 1917 * Shanghai International Settlement: Colt M1911 and M1911A1s were used by non-Chinese members of the Shanghai Municipal Police from 1926 * * : Some M1911 pistols were captured during Allied intervention in the Russian Civil War and used in Red Army. Extra 12,977 pistols were received as Lend-Lease during
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
. Conversion kits to chamber the 7.62×25mm Tokarev round are manufactured locally. * : Some M1911s chambered for .455 Webley Automatic were supplied to the Royal Flying Corps during WWI. Saw service among elite and special forces during WWII in .45 and .455. Possibly still in use by United Kingdom Special Forces, UKSF. * Viet Cong: Crude clones used by VC guerrillas with some captured in the Vietnam War.


State firearm

On March 18, 2011, the U.S. state of Utah—as a way of honoring M1911 designer
John Browning John Moses Browning (January 23, 1855 – November 26, 1926) was an American firearm designer who developed many varieties of military and civilian firearms, Cartridge (firearms), cartridges, and gun mechanisms many of which are still in use a ...
, who was born and raised in the state—adopted the Browning M1911 as the "List of U.S. state firearms, official firearm of Utah".


Similar pistols

* Kimber Custom * AMT Hardballer * Ballester–Molina * Obregón pistol *
Kongsberg Colt The Kongsberg Colt is a nickname used for Colt M1911 The M1911, also known as the Colt 1911, or the Colt Government, is a single-action, semi-automatic, magazine-fed, recoil-operated pistol A pistol is a handgun, more specifically one w ...

Kongsberg Colt
* Star Model BM


See also

* List of U.S. Army weapons by supply catalog designation (SNL B-6) * Solid Concepts 1911DMLS * Table of handgun and rifle cartridges


References


Further reading

* * * * Meadows, Edward S. ''U.S. Military Automatic Pistols: 1894–1920''. Richard Ellis Publications, 1993. * ''The Bluejackets' Manual'', 12th edition. Annapolis, MD: United States Naval Institute, 1944. * Official U.S. Army description of the original Model 1911 pistol and its
.45 ACP The .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol Automatic Colt Pistol (ACP) denotes various John Moses Browning Cartridge (firearms), cartridge designs primarily used in Colt's Manufacturing Company, Colt and Fabrique Nationale de Herstal semi-automatic pis ...

.45 ACP
ammunition.


External links


Colt Model 1911 page on Sam Lisker's Colt Automatic Pistols site (coltautos.com)





M1911 Pistols Organization main pageDetailed animated drawing of all operational parts
an
Syd's 1911 Notebook on M1911.org

Exploded-View Diagram of an M1911 from American Rifleman

Black Army Colt 1911

Colt Model 1911A1 pistol (infographic tech. drawing)
{{DEFAULTSORT:M1911 Pistol 1911 platform .45 ACP semi-automatic pistols Colt semi-automatic pistols Semi-automatic pistols of the United States World War I infantry weapons of the United States World War II infantry weapons of the United States Cold War firearms of the United States Firearms by John Browning Weapons of the Philippine Army Weapons and ammunition introduced in 1911 Springfield firearms Police weapons