Shootability factor.

Author:Ayoob, Massad
Position:Lethal force

In a time long before the word "ergonomics" entered common parlance, John Moses Browning was clear on the concept. With a 1911, the axis of the bore sits lower to the hand than many of the more modern guns it competes with. Remind the customer this gives the shooter more leverage over the gun. It limits muzzle rise in rapid fire, allowing the shooter to get back on target faster for multiple shots.

Long ago, the 1911 .45 had a reputation for "arm-wrenching recoil." This perception began with the short tang on the original 1911's grip safety. The web of the shooter's hand could be pinched painfully between that short tang and the broad spur of the original 1911's hammer. The tang was lengthened in hopes of alleviating that in the 1920s, with the coming of the 1911A1, but the edge of the tang could still "dig" into the web, and the short, stubby tang of the lightweight Colt Commander introduced in 1950 gouged shooters' hands even more viciously.

Today, most 1911s in the mid-range price-point and higher will have beavertail grip safeties, shielding the shooter's hand from that bite, The old 1911A1 style remains on many of the lower-priced "Mil-Spec" guns of this type, and the dealer is cautioned to warn the shooter about that potential "hammer bite." One exception is the Taurus PT1911...

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