Lowest Felt Recoil 45


30-06 lover
January 24, 2008, 07:08 PM
I am in the market for a new 45 and am wondering which model 45 has the lowest felt recoil in your experience. I am shooting mostly Winchester Ranger ammo and it has quite a bit more recoil than standard loads and I am trying to tame it a little. Thanks!!!

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January 24, 2008, 07:15 PM
Full size steel frame 1911s.

January 24, 2008, 07:16 PM
Glock 21

January 24, 2008, 07:18 PM

January 24, 2008, 07:23 PM
No contest

HK MK23.

Hardly any recoil at all. Of course you get tired just holding the darn thing on target for a whole magazine.

January 24, 2008, 07:52 PM
Tactical Springfield XD

January 24, 2008, 08:00 PM
The Sig Sauer P220ST. That sucker is the heaviest handgun in 45 auto I've ever seen. When I CCW it, I look like a gangbanger cause it pulls my pants down to my crack. Good thing I don't carry it unless I'm wearing a jacket.

January 24, 2008, 08:03 PM
I agree with Chipperman about the H&K Mk 23. I do not have the Mk 23, but I do have the USP Expert. My Expert has noticeably lighter recoil than any 45 ACP I have ever shot.

I own or have owned the Glock 21, Colt 1911, H&K USP 45, Sig P220, and several S&W models. The H&K Expert is far softer shooting than any of the above pistols, and the standard USP 45 was a close second. To me there is no comparison, recoil wise, between the USP pistols and any other brand. As a side benefit, they are also extremely accurate.

January 24, 2008, 08:11 PM
In comparing all the .45's I have shot over the last 40 years I would have to say the Ruger KP345PR has the least amount of felt recoil of any of them, and this really surprised me the first time I fired one. Needless to say I have added one to my collection of .45Acp pistols, which includes Colt 1911's, HK USP's, Sigs, & Rugers. I have not shot a Glock in .45Acp.


January 24, 2008, 08:19 PM
Really GaryP?!?! one of my best friends has one and I like it but I thought it had one of the heaviest recoils of any full size auto I have shot. Especially out of the box, it has broken in well but out of the box it was terrible it jumped up and to the left quite a bit. Even now after it has broken in It kicks more then any of the steel framed compacts I have shot. Did you do any work you yours?

January 24, 2008, 08:36 PM
Another vote for the Ruger P345. To my perception, has by far the lightest recoil of any of my .45's. FWIW my .45 collection consist of 3 steel 1911A1's, a Scandium framed 1911 Commander, a Glock 30, a XD45 Compact and a Taurus PT145.

The Ruger is stock except for the hammer spring. I replaced it with a 19lb one from Wolff.

Beowolf1911, are you sure the trouble you had wasn't due to the trigger pull? The stock 22lb hammer spring really is heavy, especially in DA mode. On my first trip to the range with mine I was all over the place too. After changing the spring, (which literally takes about 2 minutes to do) my P345 groups as well as my Smith Commander.

January 24, 2008, 08:38 PM

Really!!! :)

I have been a Colt 1911 Fan since the mid 1960's and it is still my favorite. On the other hand the new Ruger KP345PR fits my hand perfectly and for me recoil is less, perceived or otherwise. To answer your question though No, I have not modified my Ruger KP345PR in any way that would affect recoil.


January 24, 2008, 08:42 PM
In true internet forum fashion, seven different opinions in the first eight posts. That should help you decide real good.

Johnny B
January 24, 2008, 09:06 PM
Whatever fits in your hand best.

Well, I guess it isn't quite that simple. Of all the .45's I've shot, 1911's are the softest shooting, likely because they weigh a ton. However, they also fit my hand very well. My P220, however, did not fit me as well, and as a result I felt more recoil and didn't shoot it as well. Consequently, it went into storage and was eventually sold. My XD-45 feels like it was made for me and I scarcely notice any recoil while shooting. When I first took it to the range, it shot so softly that my wife, who is somewhat recoil sensitive, was eager to give it a try. She got off four shots before clearing the gun and relinquishing it to me, rubbing her hand because the recoil was so uncomfortable. I guess my point here is that it's not just the mass of a gun that factors in to felt recoil, but also ergonomics.

January 25, 2008, 07:03 AM
Another vote for the Ruger P345:) Of the The 45s that I fired the same day, with the same ammo, the Ruger was way softer. Beating out my fullsize Springfield 1911, and a Kimber 4" Pro TachII.

January 25, 2008, 07:11 AM
My all steel Baby Eagle weighs a ton and the recoil is hardly noticeable. It would also make a nice club if out of ammo. Of all the .45s I've shot I feel less recoil with this one...

January 25, 2008, 07:39 AM
Well it's not the P220. That gun actually kicks a bit. I took a new girl to the range and let her try my P220 and after two shots, she was like "OK, no I dont like that one"

I let her try the 1911 and she shot it fine. All steel 1911s are heavy pieces of equipment. I put a TLR-1 light on mine which adds more weight. The recoil very managable.

January 25, 2008, 08:09 AM
Another vote for the Ruger P345.

I'll add my vote to the chorus. All three of my current .45's are Rugers (P90/97/345). The P90 is a good bit heavier than the 345, but the 345 recoils much less.

January 25, 2008, 08:17 AM
Math suggests that the gun with:

* The most mass
* The shortest barrel
* The most grip/hand contact area and
* The lowest barrel axis

Will win.

Mad Magyar
January 25, 2008, 08:41 AM
The quickest way is to remove those damn factory grips...Generically made to fit every hand in America, cheaply & cost effective...:eek: Replace them with the recoil absorbing type or add something to them: in my case Ostrich to absorb the shock...Don't change your ammo.....
If not, don't complain....:)

January 25, 2008, 09:16 AM
TRP Operator. All that mass up front makes a big difference. Having shot most of the above guns, I can attest the full length dust cover on a steel 1911 soaks up the recoil better than anything else I have fired. It is similar to the effect my 10mm Witness Limited has in taming the 10mm.


January 25, 2008, 09:27 AM
MM - Nice grip panels! They don't "creep" on the subsurface after heavy use? Any contact information you care to share with us?

January 25, 2008, 09:35 AM

January 25, 2008, 09:39 AM
Tungsten full length guide rod in a 5" all steel 1911 should help. :)

Me, I just load them a bit lighter for most apps. :rolleyes:

I have an old Witness Silver Team (http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=48962&d=1165450011) that has much less recoil than a 1911. It is bigger, with a doublestack mag and a wide grip and, of course, more weight. It is a pussycat to shoot. CZ (http://www.cz-usa.com/product_detail.php?id=43) and Witness (http://www.eaacorp.com/handguns-hunting-pistols-hunter-EI.html) make some similar pistols. The Witness Hunter with the comp is a lot like my Silver Team.

January 25, 2008, 10:01 AM
USPs are great and i love my CZ

January 29, 2008, 10:27 PM
Ruger KP97. If you haven't shot it don't flame it. It has much less felt recoil than my 1911 or my G21.

January 30, 2008, 04:11 AM
G21 or CZ...


February 2, 2008, 10:13 PM
I hear it's easily the M&P.

February 2, 2008, 11:13 PM
I find that timeing has more to do with percieved recoil than actual recoil. By changing the springs in my 1911 it went from ok to great! recoil didn't actually change but the way the pistol pointed after each shot did. There's really not much recoil or muzzle flip with many full size 5" bbl 45's and if the pistol is timed correctly the muzzle points back on target.

February 3, 2008, 11:32 AM
+1 on the Ruger P97. I shot a few mags through one last summer. I shoot a SIG P220 (which I find pretty low recoil) and the P97 was like shooting a 9mm!

Kind of Blued
February 3, 2008, 09:43 PM
Math suggests that the gun with:

* The most mass
* The shortest barrel
* The most grip/hand contact area and
* The lowest barrel axis

Will win.


Even if there was a machine that could test for this, you still might not agree, even if you were wrong. This is just as objective as anything else, and there is a logical way to figure it out. I think the main points are how a grip[ fits your hand and HOW YOU HOLD THE GUN.

evan price
February 4, 2008, 12:13 AM
HiPoint .45- man that big slide soaks up the recoil like nobody's business.

I've always felt my P220 was a pussycat in terms of recoil. Perhaps the Hogue grips made the difference?

Commander Crusty
February 28, 2008, 03:46 PM
My Smith and Wesson 5" 645 has very gentle recoil. Less than the 1911, the compact steel Commander sized guns, the Glock 21 or the Ruger 345. I find ALL of them FLIPPY, but not painful to the hands or the ears. The big 645 is a pussy cat! Buy a used one---they last forever.

February 28, 2008, 05:26 PM
Math suggests that the gun with:

* The most mass
* The shortest barrel
* The most grip/hand contact area and
* The lowest barrel axis

Will win.
Somethin like....This?


Full size 1911's are nice and mellow. I can imagine the HK Mk23 would be very mild since it's the size/weight of a small car.

February 28, 2008, 05:49 PM
It is simple physics. Mass times velocity equals mass times velocity. The mass of the bullet (230 gr) times the bullet velocity (850 ft/sec) equals the mass of your gun times the recoil. So... the heaver the gun the less the recoil. Small gun with a hot load results in a strong recoil. (ever shot an AMT 380 Backup) This is why you get a tight grip on the gun. It increases the mass of the gun and reduces the recoil. Watch out though, often a lower mass bullet (185 gr) will have an increase velocity. Just remember MV = MV

February 28, 2008, 05:49 PM
My Smith and Wesson 5" 645 has very gentle recoil. Less than the 1911,...


February 28, 2008, 06:22 PM
Pistols: Kimber TLE II with the small hands package installed. Revolver: S&W 625 4" less recoil than the Kimber.

February 28, 2008, 06:31 PM
I have shot multiple .45s and non compare to how soft a HK Mark 23 shoots. I know this is a rare gun. But i love shooting mine:)

Black Majik
February 28, 2008, 07:18 PM
Les Baer Monolith w/ their factory undercut triggerguard.

February 28, 2008, 07:26 PM
ive never shot the 2000 dollar h&k
but ive shot glock 21 h&k usp several 1911's a ruger a taurus a s&w revolver an amt back-up , a deringer and a tommy gun
the ten pound tommy gun definately had the least kick :p
but of the pistols two stand out above the others and thats the glock21 and h&k usp and they are 2 close to call

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