Why are there not more modern SAO autos?


PDA






John Wayne
November 29, 2009, 03:27 PM
Given the popularity of the 1911, why are there not more SAO options available?

I realize the 1911 is a design regarded by many as perfect, but I can't think of any advantage of the 1911 platform that can't be attributed to the crisp single action trigger, slim profile because of single stack magazine, and .45 ACP caliber.

Why not a single-stack, single-action only pistol with a linkless barrel, no bushings, fixed ejector, external extractor and simpler field-stripping (ala Glock, SIG, etc.)?


SIG makes the 226 X5, but it's a half-pound heavier than a full-size Gov't Model 1911! There are also a few DA/SA autos that can be carried cocked and locked, but the SA pull has a lot of play out of necessity of the DA feature.

If you enjoyed reading about "Why are there not more modern SAO autos?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
JTQ
November 29, 2009, 03:33 PM
Why not a single-stack, single-action only pistol with a linkless barrel, no bushings, fixed ejector, external extractor and simpler field-stripping (ala Glock, SIG, etc.)?

Good idea.

I'd just like to have a 1911 that field strips in a "modern" way like a Browning Hi-Power. You know, lock the slide with the thumb safety, pull out slide release, disengage safety and remove slide. Can you imagine how many 1911's could be spared the shame of an "idiot" scratch.

The Lone Haranguer
November 29, 2009, 03:35 PM
Why not a single-stack, single-action only pistol with a linkless barrel, no bushings, fixed ejector, external extractor and simpler field-stripping (ala Glock, SIG, etc.)?
The SAO version of the SIG P220 fills all these. Why other manufacturers don't produce similar guns, I don't know. My guess is that they feel the existing 1911 design fills this market niche and see no need to produce a new gun.

Quiet
November 29, 2009, 05:02 PM
CZ also makes SAO versions of the CZ75.

JohnBT
November 29, 2009, 05:34 PM
Why so few SAOs? I dunno. Not a clue.


"SIG makes the 226 X5, but it's a half-pound heavier than a full-size Gov't Model 1911"

The X-5 Tactical has an alloy frame and only weights 35.5 ounces including the magazine. The 4.5# SAO trigger is a work of art.

The stainless-framed ones are 47.2 ounces. They're so nice I still might get an L1, but for right now I'm very happy with just the Tac model.

Last Friday my father suggested I order an X-6 9mm instead of an X-5. We'll see Friday if he wants to go halves on it or something (he's lives in assisted living and gave me all of his guns a couple of years ago, but he's still interested.) Hey, maybe he'll want to buy it. He really liked it that much. After lunch every week we sit at his desk in his room and look at stuff on his laptop. He'll be 88 in January. Maybe the insurance reimbursement for his electric scooter will turn up before Christmas - that $2300 would cover it. :)

I'm telling you, nearly 3 years of seeing the money go out every month for his care and for my mother's full nursing care for end-stage Alzheimer's has given us a new appreciation of money. Spend some of it while you can enjoy it.

John

GUNDOC454
November 29, 2009, 05:51 PM
Many company's have thrown their hat into the sa 1911 market like the ones that have been mentioned in the above replys. One of the latest is from smith & wesson but the same problem exists with all these entries...... The 1911 has a commanding market share and the others don't sell enough to warrant the expense to offer a new model that has a few features that some want over the time tested and proven classic of the 1911. Its all about money.......pick from whats out there or wait till some company is willing to spend the time and money getting the exact product that your looking for to market......good luck.

legion3
November 29, 2009, 06:05 PM
SAO is old school these days, only small units are willing to carry them but most units requiring training of large groups of people prefer a simpler, easy to train on platform.

Many police forces don't even authorize SAO guns. Some might be fearful of the liability of SAO.

The world seems to be a polymer, simple to operate, low level of training type place. Seems like most offical people no longer care to do the required training for cocked and locked carry. Most younger shooters, most new soldiers or cops did not really live in the 1911, single action era. Most are used to more modern DA/SA or striker fired weapons.

The Brits still issue the BHP but most other European forces have moved to more modern designs.

1911's are popular with some civilian shooters in the US and few other places but are not favored by most military or police units or policy makers.

Most gunmakers want to have the opportunity to try to land that big government contract, can't do that these days with SAO guns.

Ragnar Danneskjold
November 29, 2009, 06:32 PM
Would people who want those attributes give up the 1911 for this new gun?

Vern Humphrey
November 29, 2009, 06:35 PM
My guess is that they feel the existing 1911 design fills this market niche and see no need to produce a new gun.
You got it.

It's kind of like asking why almost all modern bicycles look like bicycles looked around 1900 -- it's because the design is "mature." Not much you can do to improve that design, other than apply modern manufacturing techniques and materials.

rcmodel
November 29, 2009, 06:41 PM
Most gunmakers want to have the opportunity to try to land that big government contract, can't do that these days with SAO guns. That right there is the main reason.

If there is no police or military market or demand, and there isn't, they cannot justify the expense of doing it for only limited civilian sales.

rc

OcelotZ3
November 29, 2009, 06:54 PM
The EAA Witness is SAO...

the_doctor
November 29, 2009, 07:08 PM
Most modern bicycles do not resemble bicycles from the year of 1900.

bill

MICHAEL T
November 29, 2009, 10:06 PM
seat handel bars ,frame, 2 wheels with tires, pedals, and chain to rear wheel Looks pretty close to me
Our younger shooters and police have been dumbed down to believe plastic is good, hicap mags good, and DA auto is good . We can only hope they wise up

John Wayne
November 29, 2009, 10:18 PM
seat handel bars ,frame, 2 wheels with tires, pedals, and chain to rear wheel Looks pretty close to me
Our younger shooters and police have been dumbed down to believe plastic is good, hicap mags good, and DA auto is good . We can only hope they wise up

...and suspension, brake levers, disc brakes, 21 speeds, clip-in pedals, pneumatic tires, reflectors...

Polymer gun parts and high-capacity magazines DO have undeniable advantages.

So as of right now, there's the EAA Witness, CZ75, Sig P220 and P226 that offer single action variants...the fact that most don't know these models exist says something for their popularity, I guess. Still nothing designed from the ground-up as SAO?

browningguy
November 29, 2009, 11:00 PM
SAO is old school these days, only small units are willing to carry them but most units requiring training of large groups of people prefer a simpler, easy to train on platform.

Many police forces don't even authorize SAO guns. Some might be fearful of the liability of SAO.

I guess that's the politically correct way of saying many people aren't smart enough to use a safety these days.

Matrix187
November 29, 2009, 11:09 PM
^ :D I'll have to agree 100%.

atomd
November 29, 2009, 11:21 PM
It takes a shooter to appreciate a nice single action trigger. The majority of people who buy guns aren't really shooters.

Drail
November 29, 2009, 11:30 PM
+1 for atomd. The majority of people who buy guns don't know much about shooting or guns. Once they learn they usually gravitate toward SA autos like the 1911. JohnWayne, what are some "undeniable advantages" of polymer parts and high capacity magazines?

rellascout
November 29, 2009, 11:33 PM
http://img204.imageshack.us/img204/2980/p210smallnk5.jpg

legion3
November 30, 2009, 08:16 AM
JohnWayne, what are some "undeniable advantages" of polymer parts and high capacity magazines?

While I'm not John Wayne but I have seen many of his films :D

Polymer parts = cheaper to make, rust proof, cheaper to have spares on hand, lighter weight and like it or not it is the future. At some point steel and wood will disappear from gunmaking. Almost all major companies have a polymer choice and now even polymer revolvers :eek:

High Capacity mags= more bullets ;) (only the shooter can decide if thats important)

legion3
November 30, 2009, 08:26 AM
+1 for atomd. The majority of people who buy guns don't know much about shooting or guns. Once they learn they usually gravitate toward SA autos like the 1911.

I'm not sure about that, I see plenty of shooters gravitate away from all steel and move toward polymer on the issue of carry weight and simplicity.

If this were true the OP's point would be more valid but SAO's are not being produced by most gunmakers for a reason, lack of popularity, poor sales, LEO's not buying them in mass quantitiy, who knows? But the SAO is not desired by the gun buying public except in the 1911 platform. And 1911zealots are as serious about it as Glock, HK and any other supporter of their brand of guns are.

Thus there is a market for 1911's but not so much for the SAO style of guns.

EddieNFL
November 30, 2009, 10:47 AM
DAO and striker fired are more en vogue.

wally
November 30, 2009, 11:01 AM
The EAA Witness is SAO...

Only the Elite Match series, the standard Witness is like the CZ75 SA/DA lacking a decocker.

If the first shot has got to count, make mine SA!

--wally.

John Wayne
November 30, 2009, 12:30 PM
JohnWayne, what are some "undeniable advantages" of polymer parts and high capacity magazines?

legion3 covered most of these, but here's my list:

-polymer parts come out of the mold made to exacting tolerances, without the machining required of comparable metal parts

-they are the same color all the way through, and do not show wear as much

-there is no protective bluing, parkerizing, or other coating required; thus they never need re-coating

-polymer parts never rust or get bent

-they do not transmit heat as well as metal, a big plus for keeping heat away from your hand or grabbing a cold gun in freezing temps

-they are often lighter and stronger than comparably sized metal parts

In some cases, polymer is just cheaper. In others, it's cheaper and better--take the trigger guards on 10/22s for example: the old ones were aluminum, and showed wear with regular use. Also, if the rifle was bumped or dropped hard enough on the trigger guard, it could crack, or worse, bend and block the trigger. Polymer trigger guards are a lot more resilient and don't show wear like painted metal parts.

As for hi-cap mags, like legion3 said, you get more bullets :D
The only downside to this is that shooters who start out shooting hi-cap guns often do not have as much appreciation for accuracy since there are plenty more rounds on tap if you miss a shot. There is no reason, however, why you can't be just as precise with a 14+1 1911 as a 6 shot .45 ACP revolver.

I completely agree with the assessment that most gun owners aren't "shooters." I can't tell you how many people I've encountered, from security guards, CWP holders, and even cops, who can't even tell you what they're carrying. One or two boxes of ammo through the gun per year is a gracious plenty to them, and landing all shots inside a full-sized silhouette target at 10 yards is condisered adequate.

It also makes sense that gun manufacturers are looking for LEO and Military contracts, but I don't see why these respective institutions wouldn't want a SAO pistol. Maybe they would even less incidents with Single Action pistols, as that cocked hammer tends to grab your attention and demand respect (all guns should do this, but in practice, I feel shooters tend to pay more attention to a cocked hammer). Then again, DEA agents might go blaming the gun when they shoot themselves in the foot :D

The Springfield XDM is very close to a single-action-only striker fired pistol, with a simplicity of construction and reliability similar to that of Glocks, yet it ships from the factory with a 5-7 lb trigger with a lot of take up, IMO negating much of its potential.

I have a hard time understanding the success of the 1911, in comparison to the relatively lackluster sales of other SAO guns. The BHP is another "Saint John" design, but it's nowhere near as popular. Maybe Americans are just more familiar with the 1911, having been the standard issue sidearm for nearly a century?

Vern Humphrey
November 30, 2009, 12:49 PM
...and suspension, brake levers, disc brakes, 21 speeds, clip-in pedals, pneumatic tires, reflectors...
None of which really change the basic design. Bikes in 1900 had brake levers, clip-in pedals, pneumatic tires (pneumatic tires were invented by Dunlop specifically for bicycles.) Multi-speed bikes were made well before 1900.

The bush-roller chain and the ball-bearing were also invented specifically for bicycles.

Ragnar Danneskjold
November 30, 2009, 12:53 PM
seat handel bars ,frame, 2 wheels with tires, pedals, and chain to rear wheel Looks pretty close to me
Our younger shooters and police have been dumbed down to believe plastic is good, hicap mags good, and DA auto is good . We can only hope they wise up
______

Wow. That's a pretty ignorant statement.

Tell a cop who's required to carry 17 things on his belt that he should want a heavier gun because you think it's better. Tell a cop who's by himself and may be facing 5+ gangbangers that he should want 8 round mags because you think it's better.

To me, and to most law enforcement, a firearm is a tool. It doesn't have to be pretty, it doesn't have to have an history, and it doesn't have to have any sentimental value. It needs to put firepower downrange at the enemy every time it's called to. I trust the Glock design more than the 1911. In addition, they are lighter on the belt, carry more rounds, can take magazines of varying sizes, mags can be swapped between a full size Glock and a BUG Glock, and the amount of holster and accessory options for the Glock is tremendous.

Most devotion to the 1911 I think is emotional/sentimental. I understand all of that history and the elegance a top of the line 1911 can have. And I also understand that a police officer or someone looking for the most reliable self defense tool they can find isn't going to care about that stuff in the least. I don't carry art, I carry tools.

John Wayne
November 30, 2009, 01:03 PM
None of which really change the basic design. Bikes in 1900 had brake levers, clip-in pedals, pneumatic tires (pneumatic tires were invented by Dunlop specifically for bicycles.) Multi-speed bikes were made well before 1900.

The bush-roller chain and the ball-bearing were also invented specifically for bicycles.

I guess it depends on your definition of the "basic design." By that token, there were scoped rifles in the civil war. Submarines were cigar-shaped, made of metal and propeller-driven, and used explosives to sink enemy ships. Magazine-fed semiautomatic pistols were around at the turn of the century too. You can argue any of these points all day, but there have been numerous improvements to all of the aforementioned designs over the last century.

atomd
November 30, 2009, 04:40 PM
Most devotion to the 1911 I think is emotional/sentimental.

Yeah, it has nothing to do with it being one of the most proven reliable, accurate, customizable, competition dominating, slim pistols with one of the best triggers that you can buy an infinite amount of holsters and accessories for that comes in a dozen or more chamberings...Other than that, they are crap. :D

Not all of us have to carry around 15lbs of equipment all day. Different tools for different jobs.

Vern Humphrey
November 30, 2009, 05:51 PM
I guess it depends on your definition of the "basic design." By that token, there were scoped rifles in the civil war.
Muzzle loading, percussion rifles. Show me a development in bicycles since 1900 that is as fundmanal as the metallic cartridge was to firearms.


Submarines were cigar-shaped, made of metal and propeller-driven, and used explosives to sink enemy ships.
True submarines, vessels which could descend and surface at will, did not exist in the Civil War. The Aligator and Hunley were submersibles, not submarines. The true submarine was developed by John Holland in the 1890s.

Show me a development in bicycles since 1900 that is as fundmanal as the diesel motor, the electric motor, and the self-propelled and gyro-stablised torpedo was to submarines.

benzy2
November 30, 2009, 06:25 PM
I think the "military/leo contract" issue is blown out of proportion. Sure many of the big name polymer pistols have been in the government contract scene but lets look at manufacturers outside of Glock, Springfield, S&W, and SIG. Look at say Walther, Kel tec, Taurus, Bersa, Ruger, Kahr, Magnum Research, Browning, CZ, etc. Maybe a model or two from any one of these brands had hopes of becoming a handgun purchased by the government but for the most part they aren't based on some large scale contract to keep them going. I would like to know the numbers for those models that are being issued how many are sold to the government compared to their civilian numbers.

ckone
November 30, 2009, 06:41 PM
I've been wondering this for a long time too...

Once you've experienced the magic of a crisp SAO trigger all others are wanting.
First company that makes a mid-priced polymer SAO gun that keeps the magical crisp trigger and still provides all the other advantages is going to have a winner IMO... and a lot of shooters like other calibers than just .45 too.

Vern Humphrey
November 30, 2009, 06:45 PM
There are polymer SAO handguns around -- but almost all of them are basically variations on the M1911.

Girodin
November 30, 2009, 07:29 PM
I swear some people on here just live to be argumentative. Does anyone think these two things really look that similar or that nothing has been done to improve the basic design as the poster who originally made the analogy asserted?


http://www.stichtingdeoudetweewieler.nl/Metropole.jpg

http://img.alibaba.com/photo/11090330/2004_Norco_VPS_Atomik_Mountain_Bike.jpg

Ragnar Danneskjold
November 30, 2009, 07:31 PM
Yeah, it has nothing to do with it being one of the most proven reliable, accurate, customizable, competition dominating, slim pistols with one of the best triggers that you can buy an infinite amount of holsters and accessories for that comes in a dozen or more chamberings...Other than that, they are crap.

And none of the addresses the point I was responding to. The statement was made that "you shooters and police have been dumbed down to thinking that high capacity polymer guns are good". I have shows that to be an ignorant statement. The qualities you listed in the 1911 do nothing to address the need for lightweight, high capacity, rugged semi autos. Cops don't shoot competitions. Cops don't modify their triggers so they can be dead accurate shooting from a benchrest. Cops need a rugged, lightweight, simply operated, simply serviced, high capacity tool to use during their duty. The 1911 generally does not fit this bill. The 1911 may have been the combat pistol to have for decades. It just isn't anymore.

ckone
November 30, 2009, 08:13 PM
The qualities you listed in the 1911 do nothing to address the need for lightweight, high capacity, rugged semi autos. Cops don't shoot competitions. Cops don't modify their triggers so they can be dead accurate shooting from a benchrest. Cops need a rugged, lightweight, simply operated, simply serviced, high capacity tool to use during their duty. The 1911 generally does not fit this bill. The 1911 may have been the combat pistol to have for decades. It just isn't anymore.

You'll never guess what it is hands down the preferred choice of most LE SWAT team members? 1911.
Why? TRIGGER. That's why.

Good LEO's seem to have no problem maintaining their weapon and keeping it in a reliable state. I think if the choice of sidearm was left up to the individual officer you'd be pretty surprised how many "heavy, unreliable, competition guns" would show up for duty.:neener:

Floppy_D
November 30, 2009, 09:01 PM
You'll never guess what it is hands down the preferred choice of most LE SWAT team members? 1911.

Cite?

FatGeek
November 30, 2009, 09:46 PM
I have met officers off duty that were carrying 1911's, they switched to the 1911 as soon as they were off the clock, but that only speaks to the few I have met, which can be counted on one hand. A friend who served in Iraq prefers Glock.

About SWAT teams favoring the 1911:

LAPD SWAT: (Kimber as of 2002)
http://www.shootingtimes.com/handgun_reviews/st_0212_lapd/
- Beginning and continuing as a volunteer entity within the LAPD, the SWAT team was initially made up of officers who furnished much of their own equipment, including their own firearms. Not satisfied with the performance or capacity of the .38 Special revolvers that were standard issue, SWAT requested and was ultimately allowed to carry Model 1911 .45 ACP semiautomatic pistols. Renowned for its great handling and excellent reliability, the Model 1911 is equally well known for the .45 ACP cartridge it fires.

FBI SWAT: (Springfield)
http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0BTT/is_144_24/ai_57886947/
The FBI went after the best pistol for its SWAT-trained agents. The result was a highly customized 1911A1 from spring field Armory's Custom Shop.

Riverside, California: (Smith & Wesson)
http://www.smith-wesson.com/wcsstore/SmWesson/upload/other/RiversideSEB.pdf
...Smith & Wesson Corp...has secured an order to supply Smith & Wesson Model SW1911 pistols with tactical rails to all members of the Special Enforcement Bureau (SWAT Team) of the Riverside County, California Sheriff’s Department.

Ragnar Danneskjold
November 30, 2009, 09:50 PM
Yes. And SWAT teams don't generally carry their tactical gear on 14 hour shifts multiple times a week, they also have a primary weapon that is a rifle or SMG which negates the poor mag capacity of the 1911, and they don't have to rely on their pistol as their primary weapon when things go from "ticket writing" to "shots fired" in a second. For cops who have to wear duty belts day after day, which weigh plenty without a metal frame pistol, and usually don't have their patrol rifle on hand, a lightweight hi capacity tool is simply a better choice. Who knows, I might pick a 1991 too if 90% of my weapon usage in the field was coming from an M4 or MP5. But it's not. My patrol rifle doesn't come with me on traffic stops. My patrol rifle doesn't come with me into domestic disputes. My patrol rifle isn't slung on my back when searching crack heads. And my patrol rifle doesn't come with me when jumping fences and running through backyards. I have my Glock, and I'll take the 46 rounds that come with it. And you can keep the extra weight of that metal frame too. I've got enough to carry around all night as it is.

tipoc
November 30, 2009, 09:54 PM
Why are there not more modern SAO autos?

Well I think that there are. The following companies offer sa semi autos in other than 1911 or BHP format in defensive calibers:

Smith and Wesson
CZ
EAA Witness/Tanfoglio
Norinco
Sig
H&K (either did or still does)
Beretta has but I think no longer.

This is off the top of my head If I spent about 10 minutes I could find some more.

Since the introduction of the Walther P38 it was all over but the shouting for sa autos as military or police sidearms. The U.S. military wanted to switch from the 1911 to a P38/BHP mash-up 9mm sidearm in 1948. They wanted a sa/da action, lighter weight, higher capacity, 9mm, decocker equipped sidearm. They lacked the funds to do so in '48. They finally did it post Viet Nam with the M9.

In the U.S. when law enforcement finally left wheelguns behind they bypassed the sa format for guns with da/sa capability, decockers, etc. S&W first, second and third gen guns, the Beretta, etc. On price point Glocks took the lead for a bit but have been losing it to others of late.

Military and law enforcement contracts still drive gun features largely.

Another thing to observe is the extent that the features and the ergonomics of the 1911 and BHP have influenced handgun development. To compete with the 1911 the triggers on da/sa guns have improved greatly over the last 30 years. The grip angle of the 1911 is greatly copied, etc.

tipoc

Cosmoline
November 30, 2009, 09:57 PM
To answer the OP, it's because the 1911 is a niche relic with a O/C cult following. The SAO concept has been out of date since the 1930's, and more importantly any effort to update the design will meet with revolt from the 1911 fans.

1SOW
November 30, 2009, 10:31 PM
In addition to the military and law enforcement, the odd thing to me is that much of the competition world (USPSA/IPSC) won't let you shoot SINGLE ACTION IN A "Production Class" 9mm.

The 9mm/40 cal CZ 75B SA is a best-kept-secret. It's a good gun oob. It can be really good with a little work, but you can't compete with it in Production class.

Mike OTDP
November 30, 2009, 10:38 PM
If nothing else, try a Pardini GT45.

FatGeek
November 30, 2009, 10:44 PM
Yes. And SWAT teams don't generally carry their tactical gear on 14 hour shifts multiple times a week...I have my Glock, and I'll take the 46 rounds that come with it. And you can keep the extra weight of that metal frame too. I've got enough to carry around all night as it is.

I wasn't aware of that angle. Thank you for clarifying. 15+1 & 30 round spare mag is difficult to argue with.

tipoc
November 30, 2009, 11:47 PM
From Cosmoline:
To answer the OP, it's because the 1911 is a niche relic with a O/C cult following.

What's O/C? What does it mean?

tipoc

milosz
December 1, 2009, 12:17 AM
I don't see it mentioned that Glocks, M&Ps and XDs essentially are SAOs. Striker-fired Double-Action/Safe-Action blah blah blah - you're talking ~5.5-6# trigger pull box stock. It's long (somewhat), but much closer to SAO than it is to revolver-style DAO, and it's nothing like DA/SA.

If you want hi-capacity safetied SAO, buy a Hi-Power or CZ.
If you're fine with 10 rounds, buy a 1911.
If you want hi-cap and don't care about a frame safety, get an XD, M&P or Glock.
If you want hi-cap and a frame safety and feel a bit generous about the definition of SAO, get an M&P.

HisSoldier
December 1, 2009, 12:43 AM
1911's are popular with some civilian shooters in the US and few other places but are not favored by most military or police units or policy makers.


Nope, just the elite who know how to use a gun and want the best.

John Wayne
December 1, 2009, 01:01 AM
Ok, all the 1911 fans seem to be missing the point in my original post...

The 1911 platform has its advantages. It is also a hundred year old design, and even supporters don't consider the original GI configuration ideal. It's stupid to think the design can't be improved upon; people said the same of the Colt SAA, yet modern revolvers have come a long way.

There is no reason that the good features of the 1911 can't be carried over to a simpler platform. Many have even tried, but are still hindered because they are still trying to make it look like a 1911 or accept standard 1911 parts.

Other versions, like the CZs and SIGs mentioned, are SAO versions of DA/SA pistols, and probably limited to some extend because of that.

Look at the HKP7--single action trigger, unique design, developed a cult following of sorts, but didn't succeed for other reasons (low capacity compared to wide grip, etc.).

legion3
December 1, 2009, 08:16 AM
Ok, all the 1911 fans seem to be missing the point in my original post...

Yep they sure are.


“Hokey religions and ancient 1911's are no substitute for a good Glock at your side kid”

"Don't be too proud of this 1911 you've had to upgrade every part. The ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of the Glock.”

and not to be one sided ;)

"Your father's 1911. This is the weapon of a Jedi Knight. Not as clumsy or random as a Glock; an elegant weapon for a more civilized age. For over a thousand generations, the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic. Before the dark times... before the Polymer Empire."

JohnBT
December 1, 2009, 09:14 AM
"Other versions, like the CZs and SIGs mentioned, are SAO versions of DA/SA pistols, and probably limited to some extend because of that."

I've only had my SIG X-5 Tactical for a couple of weeks, but I don't see any limitations. Okay, the factory mags are only 15 rounds and not 19 like the X-5 target guns, but the SIG 20-rounders are available. And the trigger isn't adjustable from 2 to 4# like the L1 variant, but it's a glass-rod perfect 4.5#.


"I don't see it mentioned that Glocks, M&Ps and XDs essentially are SAOs."

If you insist, but they have really, really bad SA triggers. Really bad when compared to the good stuff. Heck, my 1972 Single Six came with a clean 2.0 pound trigger.

I think I'm going to have to buy an X-5 L1 or an X-6 9mm just to get the adjustable trigger so I can play with the pull weight, length of pull and overtravel. No, I want an X-6 .45. I can hear my checking account screaming. I got the Visa bill for the Tactical yesterday (I didn't have a checkbook with me; I wasn't planning on buying a gun that day.)

These newfangled guns are cutting into my quality SA plinking time with the Pythons. :)

As far as reinventing the slim, SA, .45 or 9mm, single-stack handgun, why bother. The 1911 is already available is a wide variety of configurations. I even like shooting my Colt WWI Repro. I put Spegel stocks on it, it's a shooter, not a safe queen. Good trigger and great accuracy.

John

tipoc
December 1, 2009, 09:40 AM
The 1911 platform has its advantages. It is also a hundred year old design, and even supporters don't consider the original GI configuration ideal. It's stupid to think the design can't be improved upon

There have been many "improvements" made to the 1911 over the decades. Some useful some less than that. No gun has been as versatile a design when it comes to adapability and change. Few guns come in as many variants. This latter has allowed it to be as widely distributed as it has been. The argument that the 1911 is little changed is a weak one.

There are several companies that continue to make clones of G.I. 1911s and 1911A1s. This is because these sell.

Price point on 1911s range from the 400-500 range to several thousand for custom guns.

1911's are produced in several lengths and frame sizes from the Colt Defender to 6" longslide guns for range and hunting purposes.

1911s are made for target work (2" groups at 50 yards) and basic self defense work.

They come in a wide variety of calibers. Para-Ord, Wilson and others make wide body hi-cap variants. Alloy and polymer frame versions are available.

The idea that the 1911 has not changed is wrong. It is hard to make a simpler more versatile gun.

tipoc

Sam1911
December 1, 2009, 10:00 AM
In addition to the military and law enforcement, the odd thing to me is that much of the competition world (USPSA/IPSC) won't let you shoot SINGLE ACTION IN A "Production Class" 9mm.

As a lover of the 1911, I enjoy getting to share this little nugget from time to time:

Last year I was a safety officer at the IDPA National Matches in Allentown, PA. I saw something that really opened my eyes. Dave Olhasso won Division Champion in "Custom Defensive Pistol" (that's the division that's "dumbed down" for .45 ACP 1911s -- 8 rds. in the mags and so forth). He beat every other Master class 1911 shooter -- with his .45 ACP M&P!

I suppose we really can't say that 1911's "dominate" competition anymore.

[By the way... I really like my xDM 9mm. But I still carry the 1911.]

-Sam

Ascot500
December 1, 2009, 10:39 AM
A few years back Star made the Firestar.
An SAO with a 1911 grip angle and no link or bushing.
Judging by the prices they fetch on the used market, they are missed.

The only recent iteration that comes to mind is the EAA YUGO M88
which is really a shortened Tok.
I doubt it will gain much traction.

tipoc
December 1, 2009, 10:54 AM
The Stars were good guns. Star and Llama both made several innovative versions of sa guns building on the 1911 design. They were very successful internationally for years. Star is out of business though.

tipoc

JohnBT
December 1, 2009, 02:16 PM
"I suppose we really can't say that 1911's "dominate" competition anymore."

Sounds to me like they're still dominating. If one loss is big news, then they must still be dominating.


A buddy told me that Stars are only selling for big bucks because it's the only way to get parts. ;)

John

Sam1911
December 1, 2009, 02:20 PM
"I suppose we really can't say that 1911's "dominate" competition anymore."

Sounds to me like they're still dominating. If one loss is big news, then they must still be dominating.

Perhaps. On the other hand, if there is(was?) one last spot where competition had been limited enough to let them be competative...and now they can't be assured of winning in that area either... maybe that is indicative of something.

I still like them, but I don't make statements like "that's the only gun for a REAL shooter" anymore. I suppose you could say my opinion has matured. :D

-Sam

NMGonzo
December 1, 2009, 02:33 PM
I like my glock.

Single action and all that.

No safeties.

tipoc
December 1, 2009, 02:35 PM
Perhaps. On the other hand, if there is(was?) one last spot where competition had been limited enough to let them be competative...and now they can't be assured of winning in that area either... maybe that is indicative of something.

I've been hearing this for the last 15 years. Kinda hard to draw accurate general conclusions from one round of one regional match.

By the way, there are 1911s with capacities that match their competitors.

In the 2009 Bianchi Cup IIRC the American Rifleman reported that 7 of the 10 winners in different divisions shot 1911s.

No the 1911 no longer dominates the competitive circuit as it did 20 years ago or 15 years ago. But that's a good thing. There are more and varied guns for folks to shoot. The 1911 is not for everyone. Still the 1911 remains the gun to beat in competition (yeah I know it's the shooter to beat, the gun is secondary). 1911s always are in the top tier.

tipoc

Sam1911
December 1, 2009, 03:07 PM
I've been hearing this for the last 15 years. Kinda hard to draw accurate general conclusions from one round of one regional match.That's a pretty funny statement! If you've been hearing it for the last 15 years, then you really don't have to draw your conclusions from the results of one match, do you? :D

And, just for clarity ... it wasn't the results of "one regional match" but, rather, the national match.

By the way, there are 1911s with capacities that match their competitors.
Yes, of course. In IDPA, those compete in "Enhanced Service Pistol," against CZs and other SAOs in various calibers. Unfortunately, I can't seem to pull up the match results page at the moment, but I don't think a 1911 won that division, either. Whenever the page is back up, I'll double check that.

-Sam

JohnBT
December 1, 2009, 04:35 PM
"I've been hearing this for the last 15 years."

Yep, but it's still big news when the winner isn't shooting a 1911. :)

I can open everything I tried on the IDPA site, but where are the shooters' guns listed? They weren't on the match results sheets.

John

Sam1911
December 1, 2009, 04:39 PM
I can open everything I tried on the IDPA site, but where are the shooters' guns listed? They weren't on the match results sheets.

Yes, I can see the pages now, too. And no, I can't find that info. I see that Tom Yost won ESP Div. Champ., and I remember him coming through our bay, but I can't remember what he was shooting.

-Sam

android
December 1, 2009, 05:14 PM
Long time cyclist and I agree with the original premise. The bicycle is basically the same. Most of the differences between then and now are material and marketing.

The differences are evolutionary and minor. 100 years later you still have a frame with a steerable fork, two wheels, a crank, a chain*, teethed cogs and chainrings for propulsion and still disk brakes. Yes, the rim is also a disk.

If grabbed a guy with a time machine and put him on the modern mountain bike, it would take him all of about 10 seconds to figure out the differences.

*bike pictured is actually an exception in that it is a shaft drive. These have very inefficient mechanical transfer compared to a chain so even today are not popular. Modern chains are greater than 90% efficient.

I swear some people on here just live to be argumentative. Does anyone think these two things really look that similar or that nothing has been done to improve the basic design as the poster who originally made the analogy asserted?

John Wayne
December 1, 2009, 05:30 PM
People buy GI spec 1911s for the nostalgia, IMO. I don't know of anyone who actually carries a bottom-line mil spec 1911.

tipoc, would you not agree that a gun that retained the positive characteristics of the 1911, but made it lighter weight, more reliable across the board, and with less parts (for less money) would be an advantage? Integrated feed ramps, a linkless barrel...the things I mentioned earlier, without being limited to adhering to traditional 1911 format or compatability.

JohnBT cleared up point I was wondering about regarding the SAO guns designed from traditional DA/SA designs--I was specifically concerned that the trigger might be simply feel like a long/hard/mushy DA/SA gun fired in single action, rather than the refinement possible with a gun designed SAO from the ground up. In this respect it appears that there are a few more choices than I originally realized, but mosty in full-sized variants.

Is there untapped potential in the striker-fired market? Could the trigger be refined to the point of a SAO hammer-fired gun?

GrandmasterB
December 1, 2009, 05:44 PM
Just look at this forum or any other gun forum for the oerwhelming volume of topics like "is is safe to carry cocked & locked" or "condition 2 carry" etc. and you will be able to tell right away that there are a ton of folks (avid gun owners and newbies alike) who just are not comfortable with single action guns.

Add to that the bureaucrats who make the "politically correct" rules for LEOs and such, and you see the demise of the single action in those arenas for fear of being "unsafe". (don't get me started on cops who don't shoot or who don't know how to operate guns safely)

Gun manufacturers are going to make products they think will sell and sell well. So you see the plethora of polymer, striker fired guns out there since the Glock appeared, and you see more and more manufacturers today making 1911's because they still sell well.

But you don't see them introducing new single action only guns.:(

tipoc
December 1, 2009, 06:15 PM
Sam 1911,
For a very long time now folks have said that the 1911 would loose it's dominant position in competitive shooting. As I said, this is true, but so what? What it means is that 20 years ago, 15 years ago there were fewer good choices for folks to carry and shoot in competition. The 1911 dominated till others caught up. They had to work to compete against it. That transition has been ocurring. You seem to think that is bad for the 1911. It ain't. The tired old gun that you dislike, as a fact continues to hold it's own against the newcomers. It is no longer the dominant gun but there is no longer ONE dominant gun. CZs, Glocks, M&Ps, XDs, the M9 etc. now show up in the hands of top competitors. Many of these deeply influenced by the 1911 and the BHP. I believe that is a good thing, ain't it?

tipoc, would you not agree that a gun that retained the positive characteristics of the 1911, but made it lighter weight, more reliable across the board, and with less parts (for less money) would be an advantage? Integrated feed ramps, a linkless barrel...the things I mentioned earlier, without being limited to adhering to traditional 1911 format or compatability.

Yep, my point is that this has been happening. But the number of "safe action" triggers, slide mounted decocker guns, etc. is greater these days and will continue to be. Look when the first Sig P220s arrived in the U.S. marketed by Browning their da trigger pull was worse than that of the CZ75. The latter had a smooth long da pull unmatched by any sa/da gun on the market IMHO. That's no longer true today. Most sa/da guns have decent triggers now much better than even a decade ago. The da smoother and the sa crisp. That is because of the 1911, the work of gunsmiths and experience in the field. Even Glocks have improved and have multiple options available for triggers.

Personally I disagree with those who say the 1911 is unreliable, hard to field strip, outdated, too heavy, etc. If you don't like it well ya aren't required to. They are not "one size fits all". But the 1911s day as the service sidearm of choice was done at the end of the second world war. Militaries and cops want other than single action sidearms. They want to build the safety into a gun rather than take the time to train for safe gun handling. Jeff Cooper's old view that da/sa guns were an answer in search of a question lost out.

tipoc

Sam1911
December 1, 2009, 06:56 PM
Sam 1911,...You seem to think that is bad for the 1911. It ain't. The tired old gun that you dislike, as a fact continues to hold it's own against the newcomers.
WHAT? How did you misread me that badly? I LOVE my 1911! I still shoot it more than anything else (except for a year-long stint in wheel-gun land recently). And, no, I don't think it's bad, at all. I'm actually kind of proud of the 1911 design (yeah, like I had something to do with it :D) for still being so very good, even with 100 years in which to be surpassed by newer designs!

It is no longer the dominant gun but there is no longer ONE dominant gun. CZs, Glocks, M&Ps, XDs, the M9 etc. now show up in the hands of top competitors. Many of these deeply influenced by the 1911 and the BHP. I believe that is a good thing, ain't it?

The only thing I'll beg to differ with you on is that I honestly believe that we are starting to see the dominant gun. And by the gun, I mean the Glock/M&P/xD "family" of guns. No one would argue that there is a substantive difference between them (aside from the good folks at IDPA HQ :)) -- as one of my pals said when we had my xDM and his Glock 17 apart on the bench side-by-side, "Oh, look, they made the squarish bits round and the roundy bits square -- otherwise I think we could swap parts!" :D It seems like the manufacturers have just about narrowed down the platform that is the easiest for the most people to shoot reasonably well while still being reasonably accurate, reasonably powerful, reasonably safe, and reasonably cheap to produce. Aside from us tinkerers, hobbyists, loyalists, and sticks-in-the-mud who enjoy the variety of other weapon types, the world seems to have found the ergonomic and technical balance point. "The" gun for "Everyman Q. Public."

Honestly, looking at a recent ad for one or the other of the plastic wonder guns (I think it was for the M&P) that had all three lined up side-by-side, I was struck by how hard the designers had to work to make them seem distinct from each other at all! All that seems to be left dividing them are a bunch of patent-infringement lawyers!

-Sam

tipoc
December 1, 2009, 09:51 PM
The only thing I'll beg to differ with you on is that I honestly believe that we are starting to see the dominant gun. And by the gun, I mean the Glock/M&P/xD "family" of guns.

Now that's a stretch! The angle of the grip frame from the Glock to the XD is quite different as is the MP. One fits well in the hand while the other, at speed points low, and has the ergonomics of a brick. Glock has altered it's grip design some but is still behind the others. The M&P has an external safety. The XD a grip safety. These are different guns. A bit of a stretch to consider them all of a kind. If you were to consider polymer striker fired guns a family they still hold second place to others. Are all alloy framed, external hammer guns a family?

This "family" of striker fired guns is useful for law enforcement work (though the Glock has been losing ground here rapidly due to it's trigger and th closing of the price point with other guns) but has found no welcome in the U.S. military market. The M9 and Sigs designs have influence there with the striker guns out of the running. That could change of course but no time soon.

tipoc

Sam1911
December 1, 2009, 10:21 PM
Now that's a stretch! http://www.thehighroad.org/images/sm...biggrin.gifThe angle of the grip frame from the Glock to the XD is quite different as is the MP. One fits well in the hand while the other, at speed points low, and has the ergonomics of a brick. Glock has altered it's grip design some but is still behind the others. The M&P has an external safety. The XD a grip safety. These are different guns. A bit of a stretch to consider them all of a kind.
Bah, subtle differences. Important, perhaps, but the differences are very minor. Yes, the Glock has an odd grip angle which takes a shooter a few rounds down range to adjust to. The xD has a grip safety...that changes the manual of arms for the gun not one bit, and many shooters would probably not have noticed was there if it wasn't pointed out to them. The M&P CAN come with a thumb safety, but usually doesn't. It is NO stretch to say that they're substantively the same gun. Striker-fired, polymer-framed, "high" capacity autoloaders with a consistent trigger action, shot-to-shot, and some sort of "safe-action" trigger mechanism, all using the same lock-up, offered in the same variety of calibers, frame sizes, and barrel lengths, weighing within ounces of each other, and costing practically the same amount of money. Yeah, they're the same gun -- or they're narrowing in on the same ideal. Sure, they have their little differences, so we have some modicum of a "choice" to make when deciding which to buy, but nothing earth-shattering.

If you were to consider polymer striker fired guns a family they still hold second place to others.In what way? To WHAT others? Our military hasn't picked one, yet. But that's no surprise. The military also doesn't rely much on handguns, and spends many millions in their never ending quest to not adapt. Now law enforcement...wow.

Are all alloy framed, external hammer guns a family?No. That's silly. Considering all the different alloy-framed, external hammer autopistols: There are SAOs, DA/SAs, DAOs, high-capacity versions, single-stacks, guns with frame mounted safety/decockers, guns with that lever mounted on the slide, guns that are blow-back, or linkless, or rotating-barrel lockup, very heavy/bulky guns, very light/slim guns, and a huge variety of other differences. You can't say that a 1st generation S&W auto is the same gun as a Beretta 92 or a Sig, or an HK. But you sure can say that an xD and a Glock and an M&P are about 98% the same thing.

This "family" of striker fired guns is useful for law enforcement work (though the Glock has been losing ground here rapidly) but has found no welcome in the U.S. military market. The M9 and Sigs designs have influence there with the striker guns out of the running. That could change of course but no time soon.Yes, it is true that the Glock has been losing ground. To the M&P, mostly. Yeah, the military... covered that.

The truth is, only time will tell, but I think we've boiled things down to a common denominator for autoloading handguns and the future belongs to the plastic striker-fired guns.

Ask me again in 40 years. Maybe cops and soldiers will be carrying S&W hand-ejectors, for all I know. :D

-Sam

HisSoldier
December 1, 2009, 10:59 PM
A buddy told me that Stars are only selling for big bucks because it's the only way to get parts.


Cute,

That would be an expensive way to get parts. The Firestars are very nice compact guns. They are a classic pistol in the view of many of us.

JohnBT
December 2, 2009, 09:18 AM
I know that same guy. How else would you get parts?

John

EddieNFL
December 2, 2009, 09:27 AM
Tell a cop who's required to carry 17 things on his belt that he should want a heavier gun because you think it's better.

I would want to carry whatever works best for me. IMO, choosing a weapon primarily because it's lighter or made from a particular material is foolish.

tipoc
December 2, 2009, 09:37 AM
I think that both directly and indirectly the ops question has been answered.

The U.S. military has selected alloy framed da/sa guns with decockers each time the question has arisen in the post war period. These are recent choices. It recently ordered more M9s. The Coast Guard opted for the Sig a few years back. Sigs are approved for a number of other units as well. Some special forces units use 1911s still. Few, if any, none I know of actually, use the polymer frame striker fired guns. The specs for what they want have ruled them out. Will that change in 10-20 years? Maybe.

I think there will always be a place for sa semis. Same as there is for wheelguns. It's interesting that you see in this thread that some think of the Glock type "safe action triggers" as single action (when they are not) due to the consistentcy of trigger pull from shot to shot.

tipoc

If you enjoyed reading about "Why are there not more modern SAO autos?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!