Dec 27

So you want a MAN’s gun?

If you’ve been following this blog for more than a month you’ll know that I’m a Glock “fanboy.”  I have makes and models of other pistols but love my Glocks.  My wife and I both carry Glocks as our primary CCW platform and I’d estimate that I spend 90% of my time on the range pumping rounds through my Glock 19.  If it gets hot in the summer many times I’ll switch to my Glock 27 because of the shorter grip, less likely to print against the tighter t shirts that I often wear.  I should note that when it comes to platform familiarity second to the Glock is the Beretta M9, which I do not actually own.  I have qualified with the M9 multiple times and carried it as a secondary weapons system overseas.

All of the above in mind I decided a few months back that it was time to become the proud owner of a “man’s gun.”  I use that phrase because it’s what one of my buddies who I have trained with told me when I started my search.  I recall emailing him some pics of a 4 inch 1911 and his response was “oh, I thought you were talking about a MAN’s GUN, aka 5 inch (full size) 1911.”  Funny stuff indeed!

As with anything I decided to do some research prior to making my 1911 purchase.  I’ve fired various 1911’s on the range before but not to the extent where I would consider myself remotely comfortable going through the decision making process by myself.  So I decided to browse the internet for thoughts, reviews, videos and also seek the advice of those (aka people I know personally) who have far more experience than I do when it comes to 1911’s.  The problem became clear rather quickly in that there is too much information on the topic and people on both sides of the spectrum all have impressive credentials and claim that their rationale was best.  I decided to back it down a notch in order to answer a few simple questions.

Q- Why do you want one?

A- The same reason I own an M1A, although I don’t look at these platforms as the most effective (for my purposes) I appreciate the history behind them.  The 1911 is a timeless design and based on what I have experienced good ones are just a marvel to hold and fire, almost a work of art…especially when considering a polymer Glock.

Q- What would you use the gun for?

A- Primarily a range queen.  I don’t want it for Concealed Carry nor would this be a primary SHTF gun.  I’d put a few hundred rounds through it on the weekend, clean it, stare at it (this is awesome) and put it back in the safe.

Q- Budget?

A- Based on input from peers and my internet research cheaper isn’t always better when it comes to 1911’s.  Pay the cost to be the boss so to speak.  A custom 1911 was out of my league but I figure something in the $1k (+or- a few hundred) range should do the trick.

Q- Brand?

A- I settled on two brands: Kimber and Springfield.  I might as well have been trying to research Ford v Chevy on a car forum.  Both sides of the fence will swear that their model is best and the competition is suspect because of x, y and z.  They usually can list out examples from personal experience (or a friend of a friend) to back up their claims.

I came to the conclusion that I had to make a decision and not look back.  Getting wrapped up too many details would overly complicate the purchasing process, especially for a gun which I’d probably put 1k rounds through a YEAR.  I’d go for something which most people seemed to have a good opinion of and quite frankly, something that looked really freaking cool.  After it was all said and done I pulled the trigger on a Springfield Armory Tactical Response Pistol (TRP) in Armory Kote.

Springfield Armory TRP, Photo Credit:

In addition to the TRP I picked up 3 Wilson Combat 47D mags (8 round each).

Wilson Combat 47D


I won’t dive too deep into this realm as my credentials don’t warrant a full blown review, check this write up out for that.  I’ll just provide some general thoughts and let it ride.

The gun is heavy and I love it.  While target shooting (slow, aimed fire) at stationary targets on a flat range it’s like driving a brand new Cadillac.  The trigger break is awesome, the recoil is well managed and the sights are great.  I was putting bullets into bullet holes consistently once I got used to the different grip angle (compared to my Glock).

When the pace picked up and I tried running a few drills, it was like trying to control high powered alcohol burning dragster in stop and go commuter traffic.  I give MUCH respect to guys who run this platform in competition and can consistently shoot quickly and accurately.  As an example I can burn through an El Presidente with my Glock 19 in around 6 seconds while shooting mostly A’s.  The 1911???  I might as well have been trying to shoot a MK19 from the hip!  Fugghettaboutit.  Maybe I’m exaggerating a bit but the recoil will take some getting used to when pushing the pace.  I will state that reloads were a breeze, the beveled design on the bottom/inside of the magazine well makes slamming a mag home quickly super easy.


To date I’ve probably put 400 to 500 rounds through the gun while utilizing all 5 magazines (2 standard and 3 Wilson Combat).  I have had zero issues thus far, every round has gone off without a hitch no matter what brand of ammunition I’ve used (including reloads).  I plan on going shooting again this weekend and after running some drills with other platforms I’ll probably pump 150-200 rounds through the TRP, we’ll see how it goes.


I’m sure there are some 1911 purists out there who will link to this post for the sole purpose of demeaning me.  I can envision the comments now.

“He has no business owning a 1911!”

“What a complete amateur, just reading his post reveals how little he knows about the platform or guns in general!”

“He should stick to Glocks and it’s quite evident he has much to learn about being a man!”

To all the naysayers: I flatuate in your general direction.

The Bottom Line

There was one driving force behind my purchase of this gun: I wanted one.  I don’t plan on carrying it on a daily basis and have no intention of running it during any competitions.  The gun will come out of the safe occasionally and take a trip with me to the range, where I will smile each and every time I pull the trigger.  I’ll take it home and clean it, after which I’ll probably just stare at it for a while marveling at the design.  In my book if that’s not a good justification for owning a 1911, aka a “man’s gun”, than I don’t know what is.  I mean seriously, the TRP is a thing of beauty!


 Comments are always welcome below and shoot safe!


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    • The Maj on December 28, 2013 at 1:19 PM
    • Reply

    No complaints from a big fan of the 1911 🙂

    I love the platform and I much prefer it over the M9 as a combat sidearm. I wanted to cry the day that the military opted to move away from the platform AND caliber, but I digress.

    I own three personally (two Colt’s refurbished military and the third “accurized”). Technically, I own a fourth in the same frame (Colt Commander 9mm) but to the “purists” it doesn’t count as a 1911, even though it shoots every bit as good as any 1911 out there. I love them all and I shoot them as much as possible. Even at that, i do not plan for their use post SHTF primarily because of ammo availability. I do use them as vehicle firearms today and keep one in my vehicle as a backup firearm.

    Welcome to the “club” PJ.

      • PJ on December 30, 2013 at 6:11 AM
      • Reply

      Thanks for the welcome! Maybe you could do a nice write up on everything 1911, I’d be interested in learning more from someone who is very familiar with the platform.

    • Muleskinner on December 29, 2013 at 2:38 PM
    • Reply


    A very interesting article. I do enjoy, very much, reading what other find exciting especially when it comes to firearms.

    I carried the 1911 for a number of years in the military, also qualified with the 1911 so I could instruct at the police academy, but I was never a fan of the platform. I guess growing up reading Elmer Keith made me a die hard revolver fan. As such my best buddy is a S&W Model 29-4. My years were spent carrying a S&W 19-2 and never felt the least bit under-gunned.

      • PJ on December 30, 2013 at 6:10 AM
      • Reply

      Glad you enjoyed the article and I agree there is something about the 1911 that just won’t allow me to commit to it 110%. Then again my level of familiarity is very basic and as such I lean heavily toward Glocks. I will admit if I were facing down a charging bear or rhinoceros, I’d much rather have 230 grain projectiles at my disposal.

  1. Get a Sig Sauer P226 or a Desert Eagle or a Berretta 92FS

      • Steve-O on June 25, 2014 at 2:05 PM
      • Reply

      Because the gun magazines say they’re cool!

    • Jarheadusmc on September 20, 2016 at 8:02 PM
    • Reply

    Shortly after the “Miami Shootout” – the FBI went to the 10mm then to the .40 and some to the .45; all because the 9mm didn’t take the bad guy down right away. But few noticed none of his vitals were hit all extremities or poor marksmanship.

    At the same time approx.:

    In Texas: Man shot six times with a .357 – drove himself to the hospital 50 miles away.

    In the North East: State Trooper shoot in the stomach twice with a .45, also drove himself to the hospital 20 min. away.

    Three bad guys attempt to rob a gun shop – bad guys had .44 bulldog, .40 cal. and a 9mm. Two clerks had a .45 and a .380. Clerk with .45 wounded, clerk with .380 took out all three bad guys, two dead, one wounded.

    It’s all bullet placement, bullet placement, bullet placement – a .45, .40, 10mm, 9mm, and even a .380 will all do similar damage given they all hit the same place and depth. All have their slight advantages and disadvantages.

    For me: Springfield XD 9mm: Ammo is the most prolific, available and the cheapest of all the above calibers, even cheaper than .380. A 9 with 18 rds is better than a .45 with 7 rounds, hands down. Ballistic and Forensic reports from major city shootings prove and are documented that the 9mm is equal to the .45, .40, and 10mm, especially with the 124 and 147jhp – the 147 is the most efficient round according to autopsy reports. A 9mm, with the larger magazine capacity, and cheaper ammo, is also better in recovery shots due to its less recoil that the others making the 9 easier and quicker to train with to precision.

    Used a .45 Colt in Nam in 68-69, but prefer the 9mm for the above reasons hands down.

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