Reasons Why the 1911 is so Popular

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The M1911 pistol served as the standard issue handgun for the U.S. military from 1911 to 1986.  It uses a 45 ACP cartridge and is a single action, semi-automatic weapon designed by John Browning.  Today we are looking at why the 1911 is such a popular handgun.

Reasons Why the 1911 is so Popular

Written by James Walton

We’ll say it again: The 1911 is one of the most iconic handguns ever made. It’s one of the oldest and most legendary pieces ever carried onto the battlefields of the world. It’s saved thousands of lives. Why is it so damn popular? This single-stacker dinosaur seems archaic compared to modern handguns, but it continues to reign supreme. Let’s find out why.

The 1911 Is One of the Deadliest Handguns, Ever

The 1911 has probably taken more lives than any other handgun ever produced – and that’s not just because it’s been around for over 100 years. No, the 1911’s legendary .45 ACP round, and its newer cousins chambered in 9mm, made for some of the deadliest wound channels of any handgun round. In fact, 9mm and .45 ACP average the most trauma per shot, period.

It just so happens these two rounds are some of the most popular rounds for self-defense, too – hundreds of manufacturers have developed all sorts of rounds in hyper-competition. The results are frightening to anyone unlucky enough to be on the receiving end of the 1911’s barrel.

The 1911 is One of the Most Versatile Handguns, Too

Few other pistol platforms can fulfill basically every single duty and niche in the handgun world. The 1911 is just as happy sitting in the belt of a competition shooter as it is in the waistband of that mom walking her dog.

That’s because the 1911’s been transformed and expanded upon. Nearly infinite combinations of frames, slides, triggers, barrels, and other features ensure the 1911 can be modified and tailored to any application. That includes concealed carry, competition shooting, speed shooting, target shooting, good ole’ range days, duty carry, and everything in between.

The 1911 is One of the Most Comfortable Guns

When you imagine things, you think of a “gold standard” – that epitome of the thing. A fast car has a certain look, the perfect burger has a certain bun and paddy. The very image of a classic, comfortable handgun just so happens to be the 1911.

In short, 1911 is one of the most comfortable handguns ever made. Its mainspring housing, beavertail grip safety, single stack mag well, clean and crisp factory trigger, and simple sight picture just make it a dream to shoot. Its all-metal construction makes the gun feel weighted, but not heavy. It’s smooth, not snappy. Composed, not flimsy. Slim, but substantial. It’s just right.

In this writer’s experience, more novice and first-time shooters have cited the 1911 as the gun that felt the most comfortable, made them the most confident, and allowed them to learn the fundamentals of marksmanship. Combine this basic foundation of natural comfort and ergonomics with limitless triggers, grips, sights and other upgrades, and you quickly realize why 1911 is tough to beat.

You Can Build Your Own 1911 at Home!

As a prepper, you can build, from scratch and completely legally, a quality 1911 for a fraction of the off-the-shelf price. With 1911 frames, 1911 jig kits, and complete 1911 build kits, you can have everything you need shipped to your front door with no hoops to jump through, no background checks required, and no government bureaucracy impeding on your right to own one of America’s finest handguns.

For a prepper or survivalist, this weapon and the build presents a fantastic opportunity to build that survival armory. For the apartment prepper there is nothing better than a reliable handgun. Only the power that comes from the barrel of a gun will protect you in a collapse.

There is no other pistol on Earth that is capable of being built from scratch with little knowledge, never mind that pistol is one of the most legendary, capable, and universal handguns ever made.

About the Author

James Walton is the host of I AM Liberty a podcast that airs on He is also the author of Come Unity, Community a book about neighbors and prepared communities. You can read more by James at

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One comment

  1. I have shot a number for different pistol’s and have always found for me the 45 government model fits the best for my hand. With the note that I have very large hands and long fingers. My hands a large enough that with out a beavertail gripsafey I will get hammer bite. I have a 45/22 kit that I use. I lean towards the .45acp as a round with a history of working when needed.

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