I find it interesting that having worked for a holster company for 10 months, I don’t have a decent EDC holster for my 1911. Sure I have a leg rig. And an Army Field rig… but I’m not one that I can carry concealed with. That’s most strange to me. Because I’ve been working on my 1911 a bit here and there all day long. Just holding it, gives me some comfort and satisfaction in the beauty of the thing.
Mine is not a fancy 1911. It’s not shiny and it’s not gleaming with black tactical pretense. It is, just what it is. And that’s why I love it so much. It’s very honest about what it is. Springfield Armory may have discontinued it… the “GI” model, but I think it was a mistake… because for some reason, I think it was the best 1911 Springfield Armory has ever made.
The finish is worn. In places, down the bare metal. The wood grips are scratched and scared. It’s heavy, being made of solid steel. The sights are the old style, rudimentary and hard to see. The hammer spur is long, and with GI grip safety – it can bite you. It’s not the most pleasant gun to look at or fire for any amount of time. But it has something else….
Reliability. I’ve not had a failure with this pistol… Not a single jam or misfire… and the accuracy has been above par. I trust this gun. It’s one of the few guns I keep loaded at all times. (Which reminds me… it’s time to rotate the magazines) It has never let me down when I put it to the test and it has done everything I’ve ever asked of it.
It reminds me of myself. I’m not old, but I feel a lot older than I should for a man of my age. It’s not the years, it’s the miles, they say. My finish is worn and so are my parts. I’m not pleasing to look at, and I’m a bit too heavy, and I can bite when not handled properly. But I am reliable, and I hit hard, and I hit true.
Getting back into the job market… looking for employment. I’m suddenly no longer optimistic. I’m not as young as I used to be, and my family is larger and their necessities are more expensive… Feeding them is a challenge. If an Employer is like a Gun Buyer… Why would they pick an old ugly GI 1911 when for less money they could buy one of these younger M&P’s or Glocks?
Such thoughts have depressed me greatly. Regardless of that, I’ll be packing my 1911 from now until… Well… I need to find a good EDC holster for this thing. I think perhaps, I shall make one.
This 1911 is special to me. It is an almost identical clone to one issued to me when I was in uniform and found myself in a kinetic altercation. The result was both my adversary and myself laying on the ground fifty yards apart. I credit my armor for saving my life from his hit on me. I credit the 1911 with denying him a second shot. This is something that no Glock or M&P has done for me. And well, this 1911 didn’t either, but it is a mirror image of the one that did. That one was a Colt and had to be returned to the armory. This clone was made by Springfield Armory. I consider it to be close enough for a memento. The fact that it’s served so well ever since I acquired it is only a happy bonus.
Dear Springfield Armory,
As you know, the State of Illinois hates you and wants you do fail and die. Here in Utah, we love you, man. We want to see you win and thrive. We can help you. Your M1A Rifles, XDM and 1911 Handguns are some of the most popular around… and we buy a lot of them here in Utah. Specifically in Vernal Utah.
Come to Utah. Where you will be welcomed and appreciated. Come to Vernal Utah, where you will be treated like heroes!
PS, Illinois sucks.
As mentioned before, I had a little range time this morning. All the Gun Counter Guys met at the range at the Crack of Dawn. Sunrise just coming up, it was a beautiful day at the Buckskin Hills Range. We did a little shooting with the Springfield Armory Rep.
Shot an XDM, the XDS, the MC Operator, and the EMP 9mm… I had little interest in the other pistols. The XDM’s are what they are, just fine pistols and I like them for what they are but they are just not for me. The M I tried is a variant with a fiber optic front sight and an open topped slide. It shot very well, as I expected, just like all the other M’s. And regular XD’s I’ve owned. No failures. The accuracy was very good.
The XDS, Springfield’s new subcompact, single stack .45, is an interesting pistol. It also shot very well, was accurate and while snappy, was controllable. It is a great little defensive tool. I wanted to like it, but I just didn’t. Here’s why – and why I’m not hot on all of the XDM’s… it’s the Texture. They feel slippery in my hand. I could probably buy an M, the 3.8 Compact, as that remains my favorite of the group… but I would have to rework the grip. So I guess my hangup is one that is rather easily fixed. If you have an M, you certainly have a fine sidearm. If you are looking for a pistol, absolutely take a look at the XDM’s. The S, isn’t for everyone. It’s for guys that want that subcompact .45… but don’t trust a Sub-Compact 1911. It’s one of the very few sub-compact .45′s that I would have any confidence in. I’d have to work the grip of course, but as good as it shoots, it’s certainly a good for it’s intended purpose of CCW.
Here’s one that surprised me though… the EMP 9mm. I shot one before, in .40 and I was “Meh” about it. But the 9mm version is somehow different. It blew me away. It shot exceptionally well. Very accurate. It did give me one tiny hang up… a failure to go into battery. A quick smack on the back of the slide did the job and the gun fired and cycled just fine and it never gave me a hang up after that. What this gun needed was to be cleaned and oiled. It was bone dry and filthy from the Basin Sports Factory Range Day last week. Some Slipstream Styx would make it run like a sewing machine. The recoil was… not even there. Impressive little gun, and a great CCW option.
My favorite Springfield handgun though… the one I kept coming back to… The 1911 MC Operator. As you guys know, I’ve said that the top Production 1911′s are SIG’s, Springfields, and Dan Wessons. I would put STI in there as well, but those are more Semi-Custom like Wilson, Nighthawk, and Les Baer. And I admit I need to get to know STI better, I’ve only fired a grand total of 3 STI pistols, and each one was a custom gun from them, Larry Correia’s Cheater Heater, and two full blown race guns. Wait. Where was I? Ah… the MC Operator. I hate to say this… but I liked it better than my TRP. Yeah, I said that. The TRP is Springfield’s Flagship Badass 1911. But I just like the MC Operator more. It feels better in the hand since it doesn’t have the aggressive “Wood Chipper” checkering for one thing. It’s also just a more humble, Get it Done and Let’s Go Home vibe to it. Reliability was great… not a single hiccup of any sort. Accuracy was the best out of all the handguns… Let me clarify that. My ability to be accurate with this pistol far surpassed the other handguns I fired today. The EMP was accurate, but I had to concentrate more with it. With the MC Operator, accuracy was effortless from the very first round I fired. And it felt GOOD in the hand. Not just holding it, but it felt good firing it. Not all handguns feel good during the firing cycle… This one does. It’s the Winner of the Day for the Pistols.
Rifles. Well, you guys know Springfield has only one line of Rifles and those are the M1A’s. Springfield just has a few variants of that platform. I love the classic standard wood stocked M1A for it’s look and feel. What a great gun. Shooting that thing gives me a warm fuzzy feeling in my heart. Everything about the M1A… it’s awesome. It’s a part of Americana, like a Ford Mustang, Classic Rock, and a Coke. Metal and Wood. It’s beautiful. You can’t Not love it. If you don’t love it, just go away…. I don’t even want to know you… You would have to be like one of those guys that don’t like Dogs or Bacon or Firefly.
The one that made me grin like a 14 year old who just found a Playboy…. The SOCOM 16. See, I shot the SOCOM II before and yeah, it’s cool. But it’s like Cool that’s Trying Too Hard. It’s the one with all the Rails and the extra six pounds of heft and discomfort. The SOCOM 16 is more unassuming. Oh, don’t get me wrong… it’s a Thug. It’s the Snubnosed, lightweight, easy to handle M1A. Where as the standard M1A’s are full length Battle Rifles, the Sweet 16 is chopped down stealthy street fighter. I like them before compared to the II’s when looking at them in the store. But I had expected them to kick a lot more being so much lighter. They don’t. It’s surprisingly soft shooting. Something about it is… addicting. I really like it. This is the .308 for a Door Kicker. It’s very cool how short it is, while still being perfectly legal. It feels like a Sawed Off, and it kicks less than the full sized. If I got one of these Sweet 16′s, I’d have Gundoc (Joe at Crusader Weaponry) work his M14 Magic on it… because he’s a wizard with the M14/M1A’s. I’d have him slick it up, trigger job, and Cerakote all the exterior metal a nice Dark Grey… that would contrast nicely with the black stocks. That’s it. That’s all I’d do. I’d just keep it simple. Slick, Sexy, Simple. Man… I want that now.
I have some Video I’ll post up this weekend.
Dear Springfield. How are you doing? I missed you at SHOT SHOW, but I ran into your man Robby L at the Media Range Day. Great guy. He still does the bulk of his shooting with a 1911… Wouldn’t it be a good idea to transition him to an XDM full time and maybe make a Signature Edition XDM based on his customizations? I think it would be a great idea. Didn’t see it in the Catalog I just downloaded, so, you know… Just sayin… Think it would be a great idea.