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Old 12-28-2010, 12:42 AM
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Default 1911 design outlives 1911a1

Notice that all higher end 1911s are flat backstrap and long trigger? And the a1 style is not very common? So, why is this? What was the a1 rationale in the first place? Just wondering?
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Old 12-28-2010, 01:23 AM
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To me what makes the a1 is the relief cuts on the frame. The trigger and mainspring housing can easily be swapped, while frame modifications are permanent. Almost all 1911s built today have the relief cuts, except for Colts 1911 WWI reproduction.
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Old 12-28-2010, 01:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k9870 View Post
Notice that all higher end 1911s are flat backstrap and long trigger? And the a1 style is not very common? So, why is this? What was the a1 rationale in the first place? Just wondering?
From http://www.imfdb.org/index.php/1911#Information

After World War I, the military modified the M1911 design to optimize it for combat, adding a slightly larger ejection port, shortening the trigger, extending the grip safety tang to help prevent "slide bite", and adding an arched mainspring housing to allow the gun to better fit in the user's hand. The new firearm was called the Colt M1911A1.
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Old 12-28-2010, 01:35 AM
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How does a short trigger "optimize" it, and What im saying is the flat back/long trigger seem the most prevalent model, which i prefer.
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Old 12-28-2010, 01:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k9870 View Post
How does a short trigger "optimize" it,and What im saying is the flat back/long trigger seem the most prevalent model, which i prefer.
The short trigger allows for users of all sizes to handle to gun. Which in the military is going to be very common.

I prefer a medium trigger. All my current 1911s have the flat mainspring. My Springfield mil-spec which finally shipped today has the arched, so I'll now be able to see if makes a difference.
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Old 12-28-2010, 02:14 AM
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Neither has outlived the other, the 1911 platform and all of the features that have been a part of it at one time or another have just soldiered on, some more than others. I agree with the frame cut thing, and really all 1911s today are neither traditional 1911s or 1911A1s, save for some like the Springfield GI which tries to be but still isn't totally original A1 spec, albeit closer to that than anything else. All modern 1911s have design details from one or both designs and modern modifications of their own. The 1911A1 was a military gun, with Government and Commercial models being available to the public, like the M9 is to the 92FS.

The two parts you're concerned about are the trigger and housing. I've read or heard somewhere that the long trigger had rough edges along with the reach being longer, so the Army wanted a shorter and smoother trigger for more ease of use. The housing is kind of weird, since I know a lot of people who do prefer the flat housing, but back in the day, most handguns and revolvers had rounder butts or angles that dug into the bottom portion of your hand, and so they must have wanted that feeling in the A1, though that is just my conjecture. I prefer the arched housing since it's more aesthetically pleasing and it feels good in my hand when I hold it. Same with the short trigger.
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Old 12-28-2010, 02:38 AM
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Well, I own both an original 1911 and a couple of M1911A1s, and I have to say that for me the A1s point much better with the short trigger and arched backstrap - and that the extended tang really does help with hammer bite. I love the looks of an original pre-1924 1911, but for actual use it's the A1 all the way.
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:36 AM
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Oh yeah, the longer grip tang is something that's outlived the short counterpart, though a lot go so far as to have the super long upswept tang. Then to accommodate that they install the modern commander type hammers. You know, it's almost as if modern commercial production 1911s are in a class of their own.
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:57 AM
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I actually don't like the upswept tang. I find it makes it harder to lower the hammer one-handed.
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Old 02-17-2011, 03:24 PM
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This is a a pretty good video on why the A1 changes came about.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3ISB...&feature=feedu


After shooting my Springer Mil-Spec, I don't mind the arch mainspring. I also found that with the short trigger, the relief cuts on the frame are nice to have.
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