1911 Recoil


May 30, 2011, 05:31 AM
I just thought that I'd post about this being that I see so many people complain/comment about the unbridled recoil of the 45 ACP. I shot a friend's Springfield GI yesterday (will hopefully be shooting my own on Tuesday). It was the first time firing a 1911 .45 ACP. For me, the recoil was nearly identical to my Taurus PT99. I was expecting so much more being that so many seem to make such a big deal out of the recoil of the .45.

One other thing that I thought that I would mention - Since I started reading and researching the 1911 platform, I have see so much made of the extended beavertail. Some guys must have some awkward grips to be getting hammer bite. I have above average hands and I see absolutely no use for it in terms of protecting the hand from hammer bite. When shooting it, I was actually trying to put my hand as high as possible to see if I could actually get bit and just couldn't do it. I handled a lot of them before reading up on them, but never really considered it until hearing such a fuss about it. Nonetheless, I got to see for myself yesterday and for me, the extended beavertail would really be a wasted feature. This brings me to my question on this topic: Is there another reason for the extended beavertail aside from avoiding hammer bite?

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May 30, 2011, 06:07 AM
What?? A 45 has recoil.
Beavertails - yes, a good one. It looks good. And it does stop slide bite. Is it great comfort tool for lots of people. Depends on the hands. Some hands have thicker web between thumb and fingers making a slight chance in grip more prone to slide bite. guns may slip in hot weather or rain or high humidity.
I like them. And it makes a more consistent feel in my grip as i can tell instantly if I am on a good grip or not when i practice my CCW draw deills.

May 30, 2011, 11:29 AM
In addition to allowing for a less than optimal grip without fear of pinching (fast draw) beavertails also tend to provide a thicker paddle for positive depression (speed bump).

I suppose if I lost 40 lbs. I might get away with a GI setup, never had problems in my teens and twenties but alas I have succumb to laziness thereby necessitating the use of this practical shooting aid. My hands are also a bit larger than average if average is smaller than 2XL.

Enjoy that Springfield.

May 30, 2011, 11:45 AM
Re: the recoil. Sure, a .45 has recoil. And theoretically, it is higher than most loads of other cartridges as the round fires with more energy. But a couple characteristics of the round and 1911 pistol make it very manageable, IMHO.

1) The lower pressure of the .45 ACP has a different, slower "feel" than other higher pressure rounds. This is commonly described as the .45 "push," compared to a .40 "snappy" recoil.

2) A heavy all-steel or alloy pistol will mitigate the recoil.

I personally find the .45 in my 5" Colt more comfortable than .40 in my polymer XD or even .380 in my LCP. It's as much about the gun firing it as it is the cartridge.

Re: the beaver tail. The primary reason is to prevent hammer bite. Some come to like it just because of the aesthetics (nothing wrong with that). I don't need it as I don't get the bite, so I like my pistols without them. Just something to poke me in the side when carrying IWB. Of course, everyone's experience will vary.

May 30, 2011, 12:06 PM
A full size 1911 made out of steel isn't all that bad in the recoil department. Try a magazine full of 230 grain +P ammo out of an alloy frame in 4" or less and that's a horse of a different color. As for a beavertail grip safety, when I started "speed shooting" on the clock the need became apparent very quickly.

May 30, 2011, 12:27 PM
My 1911 kicks, but not uncomfortably when shooting your basic 230gr FMJ ammo out of it. Its actually a smooth shooter with a little muzzle flip.

Now you throw some 185gr +P ammo in there and it starts kicking pretty hard. My 10mm G20 with some nuclear loads is a more comfortable gun to shoot than my 1911 with +P ammo.

Red Cent
May 30, 2011, 12:55 PM
Adam123, the beaver tail was driven by the same vehicle as a lot of other useful accessories. Competition.
I am 6' ,200#s, and have a big hand. Slender but big. The tip of my thumb to the tip of my ring finger will span 9 3/4 inches. I still have the little white scar that bled after an IPSC match. Didn't take too long for me to catch on.

1911Tuner posted this a long time ago. If you set up a 1911 for function and reliability, order a EGW square firing pin block. After just barely, I mean barely, radius the front/leading edge and install. Will noticeably reduce felt recoil.

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