1911Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 75 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
277 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
OK first off this post is NOT intended to put down the 1911. I love the gun, love the design, it's really one of the very few if any examples of someone getting something right the first time (almost 100 years ago) and it still being right. But I do question why the FBI issues the 1911.

1. Capacity. 7+1 versus what...20+ in some other guns? Very weak here. Bad guy with 30 rounds of 7.62mm versus 7+1...you can talk about accuracy and fire discipline and making your every shot count all day long but when you're pinned down and have rifle bullets making little sonic booms 2 inches away from your ear all that crap goes out the window real quick I would imagine...

2. Caliber. Why the .45 when you've got the .45 Gap, the .357 Sig, the .40, and heck even a 9mm Corbon Pow R Ball for that matter. The .45's big fat profile make it very unlikely to defeat a criminal's kevlar, which by the way is partially to blame for the FBI selecting a new weapon in the first place.

3. Reliability. A properly tuned up, broken in 1911 is very reliable. Key words: tuned up, broken in. A Beretta or a Sig or dare I say GLock right out of the box is almost always 100% reliable. The 1911 is more of a Ferarri...when everything is right, she runs beautifully. The other guns are more like Toyotas...everything is just always right.

If I had made the decision on what to arm the FBI field agents with, I really think I would have come up with something a bit more um, let's say "creative" than a 1911. Probably a Sig P226 or P229 chambered in .357 Sig.

Now again, I am NOT bashing the 1911 design, it has a place, just not sure if it belongs in the FBI. Any thoughts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
I don't have any specific sources to site here, but I would guess that their decision took a lot of things into factor.
Surplus might have been one - they may have had access to a lot of 1911s already.
The manual of arms may have been another - perhaps their instructors were already used to teaching it, they like the Condition 1 capability, and want to continue teaching the same manual of arms.
Ammo availability, maybe?

True that .45 isn't a great caliber for defeating body armor, but I'd bet a light-ish .45 cal steel-core projectile loaded to +P pressures would do the job, and that may be what they carry in the spare mags. I doubt any of us will ever know.

But I agree, it does seem like the 1911 isn't an ideal choice for FBI-type purposes, where high capacity and penetration are more important than for civilian CCW.

Peace,
Pete Zaria.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
277 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I don't have any specific sources to site here, but I would guess that their decision took a lot of things into factor.
Surplus might have been one - they may have had access to a lot of 1911s already.
The manual of arms may have been another - perhaps their instructors were already used to teaching it, they like the Condition 1 capability, and want to continue teaching the same manual of arms.
Ammo availability, maybe?

True that .45 isn't a great caliber for defeating body armor, but I'd bet a light-ish .45 cal steel-core projectile loaded to +P pressures would do the job, and that may be what they carry in the spare mags. I doubt any of us will ever know.

But I agree, it does seem like the 1911 isn't an ideal choice for FBI-type purposes, where high capacity and penetration are more important than for civilian CCW.

Peace,
Pete Zaria.
Not sure if surplus is the answer....I thought the FBI contracted Springfield Armory to make 1911's to their specs...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
461 Posts
The FBI has many types of agents most of which will never pull a weapon on the job and shoot just often enough to qualify. Those are issued Glocks etc. Then there are the elite SWAT types. They can qualify for hand tuned Springfield TRP Pros. Not to be confused with the excellent production grade TRP. The pro would set you or I back $2400 or so. I'd guess it's for the accuracy, manual safeties and the warm and fuzzy felling 40oz of steel brings.
 

·
Hold my beer & watch this
Joined
·
5,570 Posts
That would be the Professional model,which is not issued across the board to all FBI personnel.

I believe most FBI field agents are actually issued Sigs in .40 S&W,with other calibers and platforms handed out as the situation warrants.

1. Capacity. 7+1 versus what...20+ in some other guns? Very weak here. Bad guy with 30 rounds of 7.62mm versus 7+1...you can talk about accuracy and fire discipline and making your every shot count all day long but when you're pinned down and have rifle bullets making little sonic booms 2 inches away from your ear all that crap goes out the window real quick I would imagine...
The infamous Miami shoot-out not withstanding,in most "tactical" situations our boys (and girls) come prepared to fight fire with fire. The FBI has plenty of rifles,I'm sure,and I doubt they are often show up outgunned. All conjecture,of course.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,446 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
633 Posts
The best choose a proven design. Such is the case here. There is a reason the 1911 has withstood the test of time.

Speaking of cars to illustrate the point, no matter what the competition comes up with, and although on paper, some competitors appear to have an advantage, there is something to the Porsche 911 design that attracts the most demanding consumers even today (after 40 years). Same with the 1911 consumers (after 100 years).

I have Glocks, and I like the simplicity of them, the price, and the capacity, but I prefer to carry my 1911. The same would be true if I was an FBI agent. I tell people this gun has been effectively killing people for a century!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
292 Posts
look in to the 1911 the F.B.I chose and the testing it had ti endure only one made the grade,Springfield professional,do a search and see the unreliable 1911 that S.A made for the F.B.I it puts ANY sig to shame (plus sigs suck HKs are the only other gun i carry) but the 1911 is still the best
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,713 Posts
The 1911 is not issued to standard FBI agents. The Glock 23 is. Lots of other handguns, including revolvers, are still on the approved list as well. This started in late 1986, stopped for while, then they began approving all sorts of Sig, Glock, Beretta and HK's. Just had to be DA 9/40/45 and on their approved list. I knew one who carried a P7PSP for his last few years. Nearly 65% of sworn agents report carrying the Glock 26/27 as a B/U.

The 1911 (2 of them, actually) is issued to those on regional SWAT and the famous HRT.

It was selected because their High Powers were aging (some were on their 3rd barrel) and because they wanted a 45 caliber sidearm in a SA, steel framed gun. The wisdom behind this decision was primarily for ease of use, accuracy, longevity and ease of maintenance. A properly maintained 1911 45 ACP will last far longer than a Glock(sorry Chuck Taylor) and it's feedway stoppages are easily rectified. I would venture to say that problems with Glocks and Sigs are usually a serious malfunctions like a broken trigger spring (Sig) or blown frame (Glock). 1911's, properly built and maintained are simply a hard use, heavy duty handgun meant for lifelong service. They are issued as many mags as they think they need and they are responsible for regular cleaning but armorers are responsible for maintenance. Mags issued are 8 and 10 rd Wilson Combat.

The 1911, as it is issued to qualified agents and instructors, is a back-up weapon to their long gun and as such, it does not need to be a high capacity weapon, however favorable that may be. It does need to be reliable, accurate and receptive to a tactical light. That agents carry it every day as their primary handgun is merely testimony to their affection for it. Several years ago, I took an FBI SWAT type from LA fishing and he had his Springfield and four mags in a waist pack on him all day, every day, rain or shine. He liked it and didn't mind the weight or the capacity.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
598 Posts
It seems that the 1911 is the choice of the FBI Hostage Rescue Team and Regional Tactical teams as well as by the LAPD SWAT (Kimbers) as a sidearm as well as a couple of high speed "specialized" military units for a reason. I think it is the most accurate weapon to use in .45 caliber. But I trust they have even beetter reasons than I do from years of research. I agree that it may not always be the best choice for patrol or for field agents, but tactially, probably a better choice. And besides, these units that have adopted the 1911 as there official sidearm usually are equipped with M4 carbines or some other type of tactical rifle to give them the best possible equality to a bad guy wielding an assault rifle. Shooting a .45 at a person with a rifle is like throwing pebbles at a tank anyway. The pistol for these units is a last resort weapon or used for instances where a rifle is not suitable. So I think for these FBI units the 1911 is probably a good choice. Just my opinion though.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,713 Posts
The infamous Miami shoot-out not withstanding,in most "tactical" situations our boys (and girls) come prepared to fight fire with fire. The FBI has plenty of rifles,I'm sure,and I doubt they are often show up outgunned. All conjecture,of course.

They never do around here. In a number of raids recently here in Alaska, they came well prepared... M4's, body armor, SUV's and khaki underwear. Agents in 3 piece suits served the warrants but major firepower and air support was close by in every instance.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
851 Posts
OK first off this post is NOT intended to put down the 1911. I love the gun, love the design, it's really one of the very few if any examples of someone getting something right the first time (almost 100 years ago) and it still being right. But I do question why the FBI issues the 1911.

1. Capacity. 7+1 versus what...20+ in some other guns? Very weak here. Bad guy with 30 rounds of 7.62mm versus 7+1...you can talk about accuracy and fire discipline and making your every shot count all day long but when you're pinned down and have rifle bullets making little sonic booms 2 inches away from your ear all that crap goes out the window real quick I would imagine...

2. Caliber. Why the .45 when you've got the .45 Gap, the .357 Sig, the .40, and heck even a 9mm Corbon Pow R Ball for that matter. The .45's big fat profile make it very unlikely to defeat a criminal's kevlar, which by the way is partially to blame for the FBI selecting a new weapon in the first place.

3. Reliability. A properly tuned up, broken in 1911 is very reliable. Key words: tuned up, broken in. A Beretta or a Sig or dare I say GLock right out of the box is almost always 100% reliable. The 1911 is more of a Ferarri...when everything is right, she runs beautifully. The other guns are more like Toyotas...everything is just always right.

If I had made the decision on what to arm the FBI field agents with, I really think I would have come up with something a bit more um, let's say "creative" than a 1911. Probably a Sig P226 or P229 chambered in .357 Sig.

Now again, I am NOT bashing the 1911 design, it has a place, just not sure if it belongs in the FBI. Any thoughts?
Actually, just a bit of trivia, but Les Baer was the first to field, via an FBI contract, the Baer SRP (using the Para-Ordnance .45 ACP 14 round capacity frame) for the FBI Hostage Rescue Team. I think when Gish or Trish or something-ish left Les Baer to start his own company, the original contract for 250 of these pistols could not be fulfilled. I believe less than a hundred were ever delivered to the FBI that had a Les Baer SRP stamp. This new weapon platform was to replace the HRT’s series of Browning Hi-Powers. Springfield Armory won the contract in 1998 to replace the Sig Sauer pistols in use by their SWAT element members. I have no idea how many they ordered, but I do know they have a current fulfillment order that has renewed for yet another year.

The 1911 is not an issue sidearm for field agents. They are specifically set aside for the FBI SWAT and Hostage Rescue Teams. The field agents I’ve encountered carry their issued Sig Sauer P226 in either the 9mm or .40 flavor. The 1911 platform was simply the specs that was required for those response teams, as accuracy and power were part of the formula.

So…

1. Capacity – keep in mind there are mission and equipment parameters for these high-speed operators. Their 1911s are not their primary weapon. When they suit up, their primary usually has a stock attached.

2. Caliber – it was the caliber that fit the platform for their performance requirement. I can’t expand on that because I simply don’t know enough of the information they possessed to seek and obtain what they considered to be appropriate.

I’m not sure what incident you’re referring to, unless you’re talking about the April ’86 shootout in Miami, Florida, where we lost Special Agents Ben Grogan and Jerry Dove. Murder suspects, Platt and Mattix, were not wearing body armor at the time, if that’s what the inference was. There were many lessons learned from this event in the law enforcement community, but I don’t recall the ability for body armor to defeat .45, or any pistol caliber for that matter, was a reason for the change in firearms. The change was to suit a firearm built around the new caliber specifications (10-millimeter) – after they discovered that hemorrhaging was an important component of “stopping power,” so to speak. Someone else will have to fill in the info on this arena as I’m not familiar as to the intricacies of the who/what/when/where/why of the 10-millimeter variety for the then FBI caliber standard.

3. Reliability – I don’t know the details about their (FBI’s) extensive testing during the field trials for the 1911, but reliability was indeed a criteria in their selection process, including many other factors similar to what Detachment-1 required in their .45 platform. (Not to mention that Springfield has an uber-incredible customer service department available for the life of these particular contract 1911s.)
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
73,813 Posts
If you're questioning their choice of 1911's for the HRT guys then you must not have any idea what they use them for.

7+1 vs. 20+1, really! :rolleyes:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,509 Posts
If you're questioning their choice of 1911's for the HRT guys then you must not have any idea what they use them for.

7+1 vs. 20+1, really! :rolleyes:
Right near the bottom of his post it shows that he thought it was issued to field agents, not just the HRT.

Still, it's not like .45 GAP, .357 SIG or .40 can defeat Kevlar either.

Methinks the OP needs to research before posting! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,370 Posts
Right near the bottom of his post it shows that he thought it was issued to field agents, not just the HRT.

Still, it's not like .45 GAP, .357 SIG or .40 can defeat Kevlar either.

Methinks the OP needs to research before posting!
+ 1

thats what i kept thinking when i was reading the original post.. that he has no idea what he is talking about.

besides that the .45 GAP wasnt even around then. the only reason the .45 GAP came about was that gaston wanted a caliber named after him since the other three big companies did.. lol..

sig dude, no offense, but you need to gete some facts straight... do some reading and you will answer your own questions.

my springer was reliable out of the box.. if it has shot everytime i wanted it to, how can 100 percent be considered less reliable than something else.. lol

russel
SDMF
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,765 Posts
Specialized units like 1911s because they are easier than ANY other pistol to put the shots exactly were you want them. In a hostage rescue situation, an agent may have to take a head shot inches away from the hostage.
As others have mentioned, 1911s aren't standard issue for the masses in LE.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
277 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
So, you're saying that you do not understand what I mean by "+1", and then you tell me that I do not know what I am talking about....interesting.

+ 1

thats what i kept thinking when i was reading the original post.. that he has no idea what he is talking about.

besides that the .45 GAP wasnt even around then. the only reason the .45 GAP came about was that gaston wanted a caliber named after him since the other three big companies did.. lol..

sig dude, no offense, but you need to gete some facts straight... do some reading and you will answer your own questions.

my springer was reliable out of the box.. if it has shot everytime i wanted it to, how can 100 percent be considered less reliable than something else.. lol

russel
SDMF
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
277 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
They never do around here. In a number of raids recently here in Alaska, they came well prepared... M4's, body armor, SUV's and khaki underwear. Agents in 3 piece suits served the warrants but major firepower and air support was close by in every instance.
What's been going on in Alaska lately that's been getting all these doors busted down? Someone at work recently told me of a bunch of raids in Alaska as well...
 
1 - 20 of 75 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top