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Clay Martin: Marine Special Operators Trash 1911 for Glock 19!

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Christmas comes early for MARSOC!

Christmas comes early for MARSOC!  (Photo: Clay Martin)

Editor’s note: The column below, which contains explicit language, is a response to an article in the MarineTimes that broke the following news:

For Marine special operators, the never-ending debate over whether the 9mm or .45-caliber round is the more powerful bullet has been settled.

Previously, the classic .45-caliber Colt 1911 was one of three pistols that Raiders were allowed to carry, but now the 9mm Glock 19 is the only pistol that Marine special operators can take into battle, said Maj. Nick Mannweiler, a spokesman for Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command.

“We put our money behind the 9mm round fired by an extremely well-trained marksman carrying a Glock 19,” Mannweiler told Marine Corps Times… read more

Finally, even the dinosaurs over at Mother Corps have woken up to the facts. The 1911 is a terrible choice for a combat handgun, and now MARSOC finally gets some combat Tupperware, like all the other boys at SOCOMs School for Hooligans and Ruffians. Hold onto your keyboards, there, internet commandos, I don’t care if your granpappy defended Wake Island with ole slab sides; I have skin in this game too. And it’s probably more recent than yours.

Let’s go ahead and discuss this term “combat handgun.” It doesn’t mean your choice of what to carry to 7/11, though some mortal combat may ensue there. We are talking about an issued weapon for the troops going into harm’s way. Your choice of a BBQ gun doesn’t count. The one thing a combat handgun absolutely needs to be is reliable. A pistol is rarely used for doing the Lord’s work, but when you need it, you REALLY need it. I can count on one hand the number of people I know with a legit pistol kill in the Global War on Terrorism, it’s that rare. And I used to ask every class during the pistol phase of my urban combat course, “Has anyone here got a pistol kill, and if so let’s talk about it.”

Considering I was teaching the Magnificent Murderous Bastards of 3rd Special Forces Group at the time, who have arguably carried more water pound for pound than any unit in the U.S. Military in this conflict, that is a very low number. There are outliers, of course, there always are. One of my teammates who we shall just refer to by his call sign, “Gene Pool Cleaner” (GPC), had eight pistol kills on one of our tours. That is a pretty long streak of strange luck, so it does happen. But the reality is that pistol is bringing up the rear when it comes to tools a soldier wants to use for cockroach extermination. For most of us that have fought in this war, the order goes something like this:

  • JDAM GPS-guided bomb, preferably from your hotel balcony while sipping a scotch on the rocks (Hat tip, Greg Stube. He taught me that one in the SFQC.)
  • Mortars
  • Sniper rifle
  • Machine guns
  • Rifle
  • Pistol
  • Rock, Toaster, or whatever else is handy at the moment
  • Your hands

Of that small number, 99 percent of the pistol kills in question came during CQB, when a rifle had malfunctioned. Probably the scariest environment imaginable is a room-sized gun fight, against some other dickhead holding a machine gun, who you probably have already hurt with your now defunct rifle, and you need to “phone a friend,” aka skin your pistol to finish the fight. Never happened to me, but for those who’ve experienced it, it’s very much a Jesus-take-the-wheel kind of moment. When you grab that last line of defense, the motherfucker had better work. Now, we can say a lot of good things about the 1911 pistol. It’s accurate. It has a nice trigger. It was the weapon of choice 100 years ago. It may actually be more inherently precise than a Glock. But I don’t think anyone will argue that it is more reliable than a Glock.

Who am I kidding? This is the Internet! Of course someone will argue that the 1911 platform is more reliable than the polymer prince. Look, I wasn’t born a 1911 hater. My first gun was a Springfield Loaded 1911, and it was my only pistol for many years. I was a Recon Marine, and that was the pistol I took on my first combat tour. Age and maturity, however, have taught me to love the striker-fired wonder.

It’s a great irony, the more expensive your 1911, generally the tighter it fits together. That makes it more accurate. It also makes it more susceptible to environmental factors. When the new Kimber 1911 was issued to Force Recon Marines, the old hands dug through the boxes to find the ones with the most rattle (I was already transitioning to the Army by then, but, of course, I asked my boys about the new guns).  1911 fanboys, why do you suppose they did that?

In training across 18 years, I have seen more malfunctions in a week of 1911 time than any 2 years with a Glock. The 1911 was a great design for its time, but that time has passed. Dust, sand, and lack of lubrication all have a much worse effect on a 1911. I know people who have carried a Glock for an entire tour in the sandbox, never once pulled it from the holster, and upon rotating home, fired the gun without a hitch. No one would have the stones to try that on a 1911.

Editor's note: Clay was so inspired while writing this article that he actually trashed his very own 1911. Yup. Threw it right into the garbage -- right where it belongs. Because, as he so eloquently points out. A 1911 is not a combat handgun!!!

Editor’s note: Clay was so inspired while writing this article that he actually trashed his very own 1911. Yup. Threw it right into the garbage — right where it belongs. Because, as he so eloquently points out, a 1911 is a terrible choice for a combat handgun!!! #TeamGlock #JK(Photo: Clay Martin)

What else? Well, a Glock is significantly lighter. That does matter. Every ounce counts in a mountainous environment. Special Operations Forces are much more likely than anyone else to be using a pistol as the primary or only weapon, thus further underscoring the need for reliability above all else. A double stack Glock is both easier to reload, and less likely to need reloading with its 15 or 17-round magazine. It’s a dual-use weapon, it works for urban assaults or low visibility concealed carry. It’s one of the most prolific weapons on the planet, the G19 can be found the world over. It doesn’t break easily, it rarely wears out, and it doesn’t need a special armorer to work on it.

Last summer, I spent a few months in Okinawa as a contracted instructor for the USMC Special Operations Training Group. For 3 months prior, I shot only my 1911s in preparation for that job. Still, with months of work, once or twice I forgot the safety or had the beavertail safety eat my lunch. Reloading was both more frequent (single stack gun, 8 rounds) and slower than my normal gun.

Finally, my last week in country we did an exchange day with the Special Forces group on the Island. The brotherhood of Green Berets runs deep, even after you retire. Picking up a loaner Glock from 1st Group to teach my pistol class to them was like finding an old friend. Even after months of 1911 work, it was a seamless transition back to the plastic framed glory of the Glock 19. With zero warm up, I was faster and more accurate, and not one issue with malfunctions over the day. That is a pretty apples to apples comparison, and I applaud the USMC for its choice.

{ 171 comments… add one }
  • charlie October 18, 2016, 1:09 am

    Can I take out your trash?
    P L E A S E ????

  • charlie October 17, 2016, 10:05 pm

    can i please take out your garbage?

  • Scott October 16, 2016, 1:56 pm

    Who made this decision? You want change to a Glock because it handles desert sand better, I’m not going to disagree. I’m not a Glock fan, gun doesn’t sit well in my hand, trigger being the only safety isn’t great, and double action wannabe only serves to insure an even worse trigger pull for no apparent reason other than the first government request had a double action requirement in it. But what I don’t get at all and few can argue, why the hell 9mm? There are countless examples of the 9 not stopping the attacker. Especially military rounds! If it’s taking 2 or 3 rounds to stop someone the extra capacity is useless. Now if all the military is hoping for is noise to distract the enemy then go for the 9 with higher capacity.

  • Dusty October 12, 2016, 7:30 pm

    I own both, and shoot both. FWIW- I find modern (not Colt…) 1911’s are very reliable. For me, it’s a matter of ammunition. As a former LEO, I’ve had the ‘opportunity’ to investigate shootings involving 9mm far more than .45ACP. I will not carry 9mm FMJ ammo for ‘social’ occasions- my understanding is that the military does not have that option? When I carry 9mm, I know that even the JHP loadings may require multiple hits, depending on the target’s ‘environment’- (drugs, alcohol, clothing choice, cover etc.), and a 9mm JHP will usually expand to about .45 cal… I accept that having 10+ rounds of 9mm JHP available may be necessary, even if I don’t ‘miss’ with any… When I carry a 1911, I also carry JHP, and I figure (9 + 8) rounds total, will solve most problems.
    FWIW- My combat medic type friends have ample examples of soldiers continuing the fight after head strikes with 9mm FMJ.

    • BRASS October 17, 2016, 9:15 pm

      9MM? Three reasons:
      1) 9MM is official NATO caliber and US is a NATO member. Commonality for logistics purposes is necessary.
      2) The Geneva conventions restrict most lawful combatants to ‘Ball’ rounds or cartridges with the solid non expanding hollow point type projectiles. Illegal use of more damaging bullets can land you in front of a war crimes tribunal in the Hague.
      3) For military forces facing foes with armored vests, heavy clothing, in vehicles and behind cover, penetration is king. Penetration is largely a function of velocity created by high pressure. .45 ACP is a low pressure round and velocity is several hundred feet per second less. Tests with even +P .45 ACP Ball ammo don’t penetrate as well as the much higher velocity 9MM Hot NATO rounds with a smaller and more pointed ogive profile of the NATO 9MM ammo.
      One of the detractors for those of us using handguns for self defensive purposes is the over penetration of Ball ammo, especially in high pressure, high velocity ammo. But, for military purposes over-penetration is not a problem in most scenarios.
      In a high velocity rifle rounds, that reverses in the smaller rounds like .223, which is actually a better choice in terms of preventing collateral casualties from over penetration in residential and high density occupancy areas. The very light grain weight rifle rounds used have velocity around 3.000 FPS +or – depending on the projectile used disintegrates or shatters into small fragments, even in common sheet rock, reducing the occurrence of over-penetration whereas common 124 grain and 147 grain 9MM hardball rounds will penetrate deeper having higher velocity compared to the big slow .45 ACP but more than 1,500 FPS faster rifle rounds with a tiny frontal profile of relatively fragile construction.

  • duckboy October 9, 2016, 8:32 pm

    It’s always amazed me how when something new comes out, all of the sudden the top tier gear yesterday is suddenly crap today. I’ve never owned a Glock, the ones I’ve held didn’t fit well…even the customized ones, the ones I’ve shot weren’t any more accurate to me than the 1911’s I own, I HATE strikers! Period. IMHO, striker fired guns are inherently dangerous in high tension scenarios, unless you’re a freaking robot, you will make mistakes…and strikers don’t seam to mind hurting their users any more than the bad guys. My CC of choice is a Springfield 1911A1 “loaded” that is probably 20+ years old, rock solid reliable, comfortable, and knowing that those 230gr. hollow points really, REALLY hurt when they hit something gives me confidence in them. If the SpecOps guys want a striker 9mm, more power to them, but not me.

    • alex October 10, 2016, 3:15 pm

      and one time at band camp, next.

  • Dan October 9, 2016, 12:54 am

    I’ve been around a while, and been on a couple of pumps too. If I had a choice, I’d still choose the M1911A1. Glocks are cool I guess, and cheap and all, but the 45 ACP ball round has a lot more punch than 9mm ball. I think the comment on the Nazi’s use of 9mm was spot on….people shot with it survive and become casualties that must be cared for. 45’s knock em dead…
    on lubing and maintaining firearms…If they’re made of metal, yeah, you got to field strip and clean, on a daily basis in tropical/sandy/fucked up climates. I’ve seen Nitron finish Sigs rust solid after a saltwater bath and a day or two of neglect.
    on failures….never ever heard of a slide coming off a 1911(A1), or a frame cracking. I have heard the early (pre A1) slides can crack since they aren’t hardened. I seriously doubt that we will be still be using the same Glocks in 30 years like we did with the WWII 1911A1s (we never bought any more after 1945)
    as far as being a huge fan of Colt….I’d prefer a Union Switch & Signal or Remington Rand

  • Larry October 9, 2016, 12:02 am

    The 1911 was designed to knock an enemy down with at least one shot in a two shot volley. Using a single handed quick shooting technique. Up close hand to hand combat. Watch the US Army WWII training video. The 1911 is very effective in this role. It is a big heavy powerful weapon in your hand. A devastatingly effective 230 FMJ gram bullet, One shot on target and the threat is down. It has no doubt saved many officers and non-commissioned officers (primarily an officer weapon) in close quarter combat. Sgt. Alvin York WWI “Medal of Honor” took out 4 enemy soldiers with it in closed quarter combat as he was charged. It is a proven combat weapon.

    • alex October 10, 2016, 3:19 pm

      one shot and the target explodes……lol if you are comparing military issue 45 ammo from the 40’s to modern 9mm ammo you have questionable judgement at best.

    • ejharb October 18, 2016, 7:50 pm

      Hate to kick your narrative puppy but York used a luger and a 1917 rifle in his fight.

  • Sgt Cileli October 8, 2016, 3:08 pm

    Didn’t bother reading, the title is pretty misleading and infamatory. Marines have not trashed the 1911, Marine Force Recon (and even MARSOC) is still using them. I’ve heard nothing but praise from both armorers and Force Marines about the pistol. MARSOC merely approved the G19 for use also as it’s the new trendy operator pistol and they want to be like the other prima donnas. What MARSOC does really has no bearing as it was meant for Force anyway as a MEU(SOC) 1911 replacement, MARSOC has a different mission and different needs than Force, but they cried until they were also put on the initial order of M45s.

    • KC SMITH October 9, 2016, 11:16 am

      Yep, seems the entire article is click bait, pure and simple.
      Too bad it wasn’t at least well-written click bait…

  • Blu October 8, 2016, 2:37 pm

    If you need a big hammer get a Para Big Hog and load it with 255 gr long colt cast bullets .
    Shoebox guns may or may not be around as long as 1911 but mine will always be my choice .
    WTSHTF it’s my out the door gun .
    Until then I carry a 22mag S&W 351 .
    Anyone want to volunteer as a target .

    • alex October 10, 2016, 3:20 pm

      I volunteer you as a target.

  • PatriotArmyMP October 8, 2016, 1:34 pm

    I carried the .45 for over 10 years in the Army. Transitioned over to the 9mm. I would throw both in the trash if I had my weapons choice. I am a firm believer that “bigger is better” when it comes to handguns. The .40 S&W or the .10 mm are the best place to start at. Then move up to the 41. mag, .44 mag, etc… Heavier? Yes! less ammo capacity? Yes! But, the benefits of better accuracy, longer range, more knock down power out weigh these factors
    My experience comes from over 22 years in the Army actively using the 9 and 45 daily for my duty weapon and as a secondary for Embassy security, personal protection, executive protection and crowd control. I was not a SEAL or “special operator”. I was an Army MP doing embassy security who transitioned to the “INT/SEC” billet after getting a college degree. I was a very “decent” shot in my day with ANY pistol, and can still “Hang” with most young guys todayBut I used both of the mentioned weapons on duty daily for my career and would have swapped both out for a 10 mm or .44mag semi-auto in a flat minute. My CC weapon is a .40 S&W. I also carry a .41 mag at times on my hip. When feeling really “froggy” I like to PLAY with my Desert Eagle .44 mag semi-auto. This last weapon is a true “tack driver” and it will knock down whatever I hit with it. Just my humble opinion!

  • MeSeaHunt October 8, 2016, 8:53 am

    As a former attached member of 1st Recon (1983-89) we used the 1911 .45 as our carry pistol, during that time there were many others that were avail depending on the region we were in?? Others such as FNH and HK and Glock and Ruger and Sig were trying to get their name in there so we tested a lot of pistols, my favorite was not the standard 1911 but the round to me is the ONLY one I choose to carry, it has been proven over and over the 9mm just does NOT have what it takes, without have to use multiple rounds compared to the ONE .45 round!!! All the govt cares about is COST, and it is evident in this case with the 9mm choice, granted as stated most kills are not from your pistol sidearm, BUT when it is needed it sure is nice to know it will do the job with only ONE round!!! By the way my favorite over my 22 year career was the FN 5n7 round, there is nothing I could not put a stop to (both platforms) on the battlefield when I needed it to do the deed!!! Happy shootin’

  • Glenn61 October 8, 2016, 8:35 am

    What’s to debate…?,, the old 1911 is just that. Old.,,, A Glock 21 in 45ACP would be better, or if you want a safer gun, then the Sig P227 in 45ACP is the best choice.
    For capacity and ease of carry like in a back pack the Glock 19 can’t be beat.
    And then there’s the 40cal guns, in the same configurations from Glock and Sig.
    It’s a wonder anyone still makes the 1911 platform, but then again, it’s also strange that Harley Davidson is still around making big, heavy, slow, over priced, “dinosaur” motorcycles .
    I guess it’s because of the criminal Unions that got bailed out by Obama’s stimulus while roads and bridges saw very little extra funds.

  • Willis Coxswell October 8, 2016, 6:35 am

    Is this what our country has come to?
    Mother of all that’s Holy…
    “Lighter weight” ” More Bullets” ….
    “More Failures”?????
    Sounds like the panty patrol has taken charge of purchasing hardware too. If you can’t grip a big bullet gun tight enough to hold it still while it cycles, then you should put your gun down and pick up your picket sign and cry with the rest of the BoweL Movement pussies.
    Show some fucking sack!! Bunch a limp wristed pussies can’t hold a big gun?? Then don’t pick up one at all.
    I’ll fight with the soldier that has back to back World War Championships long before I fight with child’s toy. We stopped winning fights when we stopped firing big bullets at the enemy.
    This is a propaganda move by government beauracrats. The Nazis chose the 9mm because it was a survivable round. America chose the .45 because it wasn’t a survivable round. The Nazis were outnumbered and learned that a wounded soldier needs two more soldiers to carry them to safety. Bingo! Three soldiers out of the fight with one tiny bullet.
    The other deciding factor in my book is the number of manufacturers reproducing the 1911 platform. There aren’t any other manufacturers reproducing Glocks. Apparently majority rules.
    I mean after all when you eventually die, do want to leave behind a plastic piece of shit for your family to protect themselves or a piece of Historical American Legacy?
    You’ll never hear a story begin with,” This was my Granddad’s Glock from WWII”
    The M1911 in the hands of an American soldier is the reason you aren’t speaking German today, Or Austrian or Japanese for that matter. Apparently there is some butt hurt about the most successful firearm in the history of mankind.
    Glock, like Toyota is an advertising guru. Theyre both glorified trash. Let me know where they are after they have been #1 for over 100 years.
    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

    • Shecky October 8, 2016, 12:52 pm

      BWAHAHA…. You tell’m Willis. Just like the trash bag commercials. 45ACP Hefty Hefty Hefty…. 9 mm wimpy wimpy wimpy.
      lol
      MGySgt
      Semper Fi

    • Pseudo October 8, 2016, 6:58 pm

      Willis I whole heartily agree, and Clay nothing against you, but for my take about all I ever encounter any more are sob stories about recoil.

      My take is the affirmative action panty waist crowd boo-hooed about recoil. For the masculine side unless they have been hooded winked by the lbgt side does not have or are qualified for a “man” card and I hear all of this whining about recoil just as much with the rifle crowd.

      Here is an idea just take someone with you to shoot for you.

    • Dewite October 9, 2016, 2:54 pm

      C’mon now….i agree with u till u trash toyota. Insert Chevy or Chrysler/Fiat in there. Toyotas beat all for long term durability. Ask the guy on youtube with 600,000 miles on his 07 Tacoma

  • Archangel October 7, 2016, 11:05 pm

    I will never trust a gun without a manual safety.
    How many people have accidentally fired a glock by unknowingly pressing the trigger?
    I have seen more than one.

    • Archangel October 8, 2016, 2:26 pm

      None of my 1911 guns (9mm, 45 and the P238 clone) have ever had a FTF, FTE, or any other issue what so ever.
      And if empty, will beat the toughest man to death and afterwards will still chamber a round and fire.
      Oh, and I fire the cheapest steel and aluminum cased rounds in it all the time.
      If he wants more rounds in a lighter gun, more power to him, but he is an ass for tossing the perfectly good 1911 in the trash just to make a point.
      No doubt after that lame picture was taken, it was picked out, cleaned up and put away properly.

  • J Karn October 7, 2016, 10:39 pm

    Let’s talk about caliber. The military uses ball ammo. Now, if JHP is allowed and issued, I will seriously consider a 9mm over a .45, but remember that the US Army went BACK to a .45 when the stopping power of a .36 caliber projectile was proven to be an insufficient man-stopper. My father carried a 1911 in Korea. Many of our allies carried Browning Hi-Powers. After numerous Chinese human wave attacks, there are numerous stories among Korean vets of allied troops trying to trade their 13-round BHPs for 7-round 1911s. In a pistol-range gunfight, stopping power trumps.
    Now let’s talk about design. While the Glock is an excellent and reliable design, how much real-world field combat testing has it endured? Street reliability and field combat reliability are two entirely different animals. My grandfather carried a 1911 in the mud of the trenches of WWI. He used to talk about how EVERYTHING got covered in mud and how mud got into EVERYTHING. And he talked about how the mud stopped up machine guns, artillery, vehicles, etc., but his 1911 still functioned, with minimal care and cleaning. The 1911 survived the mud of the WWI trenches, the sands of Omaha and Iwo Jima, the frozen conditions of Bastogne and Chosin, and the jungles of the South Pacific, Vietnam, and Latin America. When the Glock has that sort of resume, I will consider it. I have nothing against polymer 9s–I own a Springfield XD in 9mm. The only reasons I don’t own a Glock is that the grip shape is all wrong and you have to squeeze the trigger to disassemble it (major design flaw). Otherwise, Glocks are good guns. But as much as I love my XD, if I could only have one gun for all situations or if SHTF, I am sticking with my 1911. It works, and it has proven that it works under all conditions.

  • kerry murdock October 7, 2016, 10:26 pm

    If the Marines had gone with the FNP-45, they would have had 16 rounds of +P 45. Far better than any 9mm. they made NO improvement over the M9. IDIOTS.

    • Glenn61 October 8, 2016, 8:37 am

      That’s politics at work…..

  • charles October 7, 2016, 8:05 pm

    I would first like the thank all of you who served our country. Im very grateful, and I truly mean that. I have been a shooter all my life, and Im what you would call a “gun-nut” so I have shot many different types of weapons and calibers. My only REAL comment here is simple. 9MM’s DO NOT PUNCH HARD ENOUGH. This has been proven time and time again with ballistic tests. We all know a few cops. We all know people who have served the country. None that I know have had anything nice to say about the 9mm round. In fact, my friend who served say’s he loved his Beretta because it gave him a tool to hammer out tailgate pins on the Hummers. Other than that, he jokes about throwing it at the enemy to cause more harm as opposed to shooting. Of course this is exaggerated humor, but the point here is, if combat troops think Glocks are better for combat, then great! But get a Glock that shoots a real round. Not a target plinker.

  • Larry Koehn October 7, 2016, 7:01 pm

    Well I am not a couch commando and I don’t own black BDUs and jump boots but I have carried a pistol for over 30 years. I live on 80 wooded acres and around they property I usually carry a Glock 23 in a Kydex Safariland paddle holster with a retention system. The gun stays in the holster and you can sweat on it, get it dirty and it doesn’t rust but mine has 3.5 pound Taran Tactical trigger, a stainless guide rod and a 20 pound spring, a ported Lone Wolf barrel, and Advantage sights. It now always goes bang and I can actually hit something with it. Last rattle snake had 13 buttons. You could not shoot lead out of the stock barrel. The stock trigger made the gun shoot random gatherings instead of groups. The stock PLASTIC sights were an abomination. Now with all of that stuff fixed and the government supplying me with jacketed ammo I would carry it in combat.
    My preferred gun is my single action Springfield Armory EMP 4 in 9mm. The grip was made to be 9mm and not a 45 with funny magazines for 9mm. It came with 3 and a mag holder for 2 of them. It also came with a plain Jane Kydex holster. It is flat and conceals nicely in a good holster that I ordered today. It is a beautiful two tone all metal gun, aluminum frame, with handsome wood grip panels. It is not a brick with a handle like Glocks. The trigger is good and a light weight one. The safety is both sides. It has a perfect beaver tail and grip safety with a memory bump and a commander style hammer. I carry it cocked and locked with a round in the chamber which is safer than a Glock with that trigger only safety. It holds 10 rounds. You look at a Glock and think ugly plastic gun and at the EMP 4 you think wow. Don’t ever minimize the wow factor with guns. I will have to change the sights as I am 72 and that light pipe in front and two dots in back just doesn’t cut it for old eyes. Advantage sights are the way to go for fast acquisition and accurate shot placement. For my personal carry gun and not a work gun I’ll take the EMP 4 every time over the Glock.

  • John R. October 7, 2016, 6:48 pm

    I believe this “story” was generated as click bait pitting 1911 owners against Glock. Whic is an argument that will never be settled as there are to many die hard fans on both sides. Quite frankly the comments posted were more interesting than the article itself.
    My only use for a 9mm is an inexpensive way to train and practice, but my Sig 226 Stainless Elite is a chore to carry and or conceal. Most often I carry a Sig Compact Nitron that had been through Sig’s custom shop and as a back up I carry an East German Makarov with Hornady JHP’s.
    It’s more important to practice and train with whatever firearm you choose to carry, and then practice some more until the operation is controlled by muscle memory. 99.9 percent of concealed carry owners will never have to draw their firearm, but if it happens one should be ready and at that point in time it will not make a difference if you are using Tupperware or steel.

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 8:18 pm

      not click bait, I don’t play that game. But i do believe that combat tools have to evolve, and I commend the USMC for finally giving up on a less than ideal combat platform. I don’t care what anyone carries for CCW, that is your choice. The choice for Soldiers and Marines gets made at Starfleet, and it is often a bad choice, made by people that have never actually been in harms way.

      • Sgt Cileli October 8, 2016, 3:45 pm

        They haven’t given up the 1911, Force Recon still uses it. MARSOC merely approved the G19 for use as an alternative when the 1911 isn’t appropriate. MARSOC has different needs than Force. This article is click bait.

  • M P Katte, PHD October 7, 2016, 6:04 pm

    “…carried for an entire tour and never removed from holster”… yep, I’d value an opinion from this pogue.
    I’ve used 1911s, Hi Powers, Glocks, and revolvers for serious social encounters and anyone that thinks a 115 fmj has more value than a 230 fmj is delusional. FPS, ME, etc, are of secondary importance, what matters more is momentum.

    Magazine capacity is grossly overrated. Learn to shoot under duress and this becomes less important. In seven engagements using handguns, with up to three bad guys at a time, eight rounds were enough. Many seem to have forgotten that in order to kill, one must be willing to risk being killed. Hiding and simply spraying the area is best left to SMGs.

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 8:23 pm

      Pogue? What exactly did you do in the Corps there PHD candidate? I hate to tell you this couch ninja, but my point was pistols rarely get used, even by elite assault forces, that specialize in CQB. I’m sure things are different in ” Call of Duty: Black Ops”, but not that way in the real world. Fuck, I know assaulters that stopped carrying a pistol altogether.

    • Neal gibson October 7, 2016, 9:49 pm

      I like riveted and fried chicken. They are both awesome guns and I usually bring both whenever I have a chance to go to the range.

  • Charlie Porter October 7, 2016, 5:42 pm

    In the past 70 so years I have owned two Glocks and several 1911 . I still have the 1911s and NO Glocks. Says it all for me! I know what works in extreme conditions, Ever try to fix a problem with a Glock in the field. Good Luck. Don’t tell to tell me does not happen. There must be a reason the 1911 is one of the most copied handgun and I might add it keeps coming back,again and again. All these new and better handguns come on the scene and the 1911 is still the one that takes first place in almost any situation or competition .No more needs to be said.

  • BigMark October 7, 2016, 5:34 pm

    The term “cocked and locked” came from the 1911, can the Glock do that? No. The safe is… nothing in the chamber.
    As your flipping the slide back to chamber, I’m already burning lead.
    I carried a 1911 during 2 1/2 tours in Viet Nam. I was in “C” 1st Recon, 3rd Bn 7th Marines, and later in 1st Recon Battalion., so you know what I’m talking about….the old “Dodge City” routine on the trail.
    Sorry, but the Glock doesn’t cut it…either in ammo our in ease of use.

  • Michael Wade October 7, 2016, 4:59 pm

    Why is there only 2 choices between the colt 1911? The 9mm ball ammo has been proven to be a poor stopper by Police Departments across the country and the military. No Police Department uses ball ammo today. If you are going to use ball ammo then you want the .45 ACP. The military should go with Glock Model 41 which is light weight at 27 ounces and carries 13 rounds in its magazine. When you are down to using a pistol your advisory is close and it needs to work. If no one is killed with pistols in the military, why are the tax payer buying them, that was a stupid remark. The decision behind the glock mdl 19 9mm is made by peopled who know little about hand guns. I have 25 years worth of experience with Glock hand Guns and 40 years with experience with hand guns as a US Marine, Police Officer and as an armed civilian.

    • Kivaari October 7, 2016, 6:30 pm

      It was a choice between the M1911-types they were suing and the Glocks that everyone else in special ops used. The G19 was the gun of choice for other special operators, over the M9, and other pistols tried over the years like the Sig P226 and P228. When the issue M1911 showed itself to be less than desired, instead of playing around they simply adopted the already adopted G19. It makes sense, the G19 is superior to the M1911 and was already in use and supported.

      • Sgt Cileli October 8, 2016, 3:55 pm

        But the Corps didn’t dump the M45 this article is misleading as shit, attempting to equate MARSOC to the actual Marine Corps, they fall under SOCOM and for all intents and purposes are a seperste entity than the Corps itself. MARSOC approved the G19 for use, yes – but Force Recon ( who the M45A1 was meant for initially, not MARSOC) is still using it. Force is what matters not MARSOC, if they dump it then that’ll mean something.

  • Humble pie October 7, 2016, 4:47 pm

    I’ve carried a GLOCK 17 on over 30 trips to OEF/OIF doing security work. Never had any problems. GLOCK 19 is just a tad smaller size wise. A good pistol just the same, some people will never accept the polymer frame. A smart choice by MARSOC.

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 8:25 pm

      I like a 17 better too, but a 19 is a good choice if its your only polymer option. Thanks!

  • Graham October 7, 2016, 4:17 pm

    The rock sorry the Glock beat out the H&K
    I know which one myself and 30 other ex forces blokes would have preferred.

  • Mark Van Epps October 7, 2016, 3:39 pm

    Clay you’re an idiot!! You must have had two cups of the glock kool-aid!!! The glock pistols are tried and proven good tools but to totally trash THE American icon of handguns shows your lack of knowledge, style and respect you and your Tupperware guns have your place – away from shooters like me.

  • Carroll October 7, 2016, 3:33 pm

    As much as I love my 1911, the logic behind the decision to switch over is hard to deny. I used to carry either a Colt Delta Elite or a Combat Commander off duty, and I ran a hell of a lot of rounds through both. I’m left-handed, so all my 1911s had an ambidextrous safety fitted. I found that the standard slide release and mag release controls were easy to operate left-handed. Once I tried a EAA Witness in .45, though, the Colts were no longer my off duty guns–more ammo in the gun, DA/SA capability, a lower bore axis giving me faster shot recovery times, faster magazine changes, etc., made that decision for me.

    That said, Glocks just don’t do it for me–the grip angle doesn’t point naturally for me, and the little cutout where the trigger guard meets the grip does a number on the skin of my middle finger. Their reliability and accuracy are top-shelf for a duty gun, I just don’t like the feel of them. Fortunately, there are plenty of striker-fired Tupperware guns on the market that do feel good to me that are equal in terms of reliability to the Glock.

    A double-stack striker-fired pistol is a better carry gun than a 1911 when things get dicey, although I’d put CZs and CZ clones right with them.

  • sluggercat October 7, 2016, 2:39 pm

    Sir I will write a $500 check to your favorite charity if you will pull that gun out of the trash and send it to me. I would be proud to own a gun that belonged to a man who chose spend his youth serving our country even if it isn’t your favorite gun. Well written article also and with some refreshingly non pc language.

  • Roger Cross October 7, 2016, 2:35 pm

    After 2 terms in Vietnam as a USMC 60mm Mortar team leader, and carrying a handgun all that time. after holding all the NRA certifications available. After coaching my handgun team to 3 national championships. after teaching basic pistol, advanced pistol, tactical handgun, concealed carry, to thousands. all I can say is Semper F brother, but you are nuts. this was a poor choice. its not .45 vs 9mm I get that. they chamber the 1911 in 9mm also, which would have been a better choice. Chesty is rolling over in his grave.

    • Kivaari October 7, 2016, 6:37 pm

      You missed something. SIZE, WEIGHT, MAGAZINE CAPACITY, SPEED OF USE AND RELOADING are all superior to the M1911. AND you don’t need to carry it cocked and locked, or hammer down, or anyway other than ready.

  • John D. Smith October 7, 2016, 2:14 pm

    maybe we could get Glock to make us a 1911 model…….problem solved

  • Jeremy October 7, 2016, 2:00 pm

    I am also a member of the Spec-Ops family. I own a 1911 for personal carry, but as far a a combat pistol I can think of at least 2 handgun brands I would rather carry than a Glock, first is a Sig and than a H&K USP. I just never liked or rather trusted the Glock. This is just my point of view. And the author was correct on at least one thing, just cause the gun is expensive doesn’t always mean that it is better.

  • just me October 7, 2016, 1:46 pm

    I think the decision on the 9mm and glocks was based on little hands and little winners or the lack of one all together. Women and little dudes can’t handle the 45 and 1911s. Maybe a little UN or NATO pressure for common 9mm round.
    That said 1911s or HD in 45 is my choise. In the woods it is a 41 mag or 44 revolver. I’ve been on dope harvests when the semi autos all jammed up with dirt and leaves.

    • bob October 7, 2016, 2:20 pm

      Your opinion is total bull! My girlfriend shots my compact 45, 40 S&W, and my Colt Python. She always prefers to carry a Glock 43.

      “45 is my choise” speaks volumes…

    • Kivaari October 7, 2016, 6:38 pm

      That’s damned silly.

    • Rayray October 8, 2016, 10:13 am

      Dude, I am pretty sure Jessie Duff, or should I say Grandmaster Duff is a woman, a kinda hot skinny somewhat petit woman that I am sure can outshoot anyone commenting on this board with a 1911 even if she gave the rest of us scrubs our own choice (unless Jerry Miculek is trolling in cognito, even then a maybe). Anyone can grip a 1911, even girls… Much as I like the 1911, and i do like a 1911, it’s old… I don’t like the Glock, but I would much rather have a modern 9mm if I had to trust it under stress. The 1911 requires a lot of training, and is subject to OE. Safeties are hard to get right even under range conditions. I would never want to hear less than a click when I expect to hear full bang under stress. YMMV.

  • Tripwire October 7, 2016, 1:39 pm

    I was issued several rattle trap 1911’s during my short 4 years in the Corp, I did shoot expert with them, having said that as to Clay’s comments.
    I own several 1911’s. I also own a Glock 35, this among many CZ’s and even a really great Diawoo in 40, this leads me to say.
    I love Redheads, a lot, I like Blonds a lot, I wouldn’t toss either out of bed for eating crackers.
    If I was going into harms way I too would carry something with more than 8 rounds, I would carry a Glock with no worries.
    Clay, can I have that 1911 you tossed?

  • Bruce Johnston October 7, 2016, 1:33 pm

    Carried the 1911 as an Army MP from the mid-70’s through the mid-80’s. Carried one for 20 years CCW then I discovered Glocks. I have a G-27, G-23 and my personal favorite a G-30. Not a big fan of the 9MM. I’ve out shot gentlemen with custom 1911’s costing over three thousand dollars on the qualification range with my G-30. Maybe it’s the operator, maybe the gun, don’t know, but, I’ll never carry another 1911. They were great guns for their time, but their time is over. Too complicated, and not enough rounds. I would only own one for nostalgia reasons.

  • Norm Fishler October 7, 2016, 1:27 pm

    When Glocks first hit the American shores, I was one of the first to buy one. I couldn’t tell you how many I’ve owned, but it’s been a bunch; 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, & 23. I carried and shot them for a decade or more until that fateful day when I first shot a CZ 75. I sold all my Glocks and never looked back. In retrospect, I have nothing bad to say about them. I just found something I like better and have moved on. Glocks are solid users, made to get out in the mud and the blood. I also own an extremely nice 1911 Springfield and like it very much. (My first center fire pistol at age 14 was a WWII 1911A1.) But I like it the same way I’d like a vintage Corvette. I take it out to the range , shoot it and put it away. Personally I’m glad for all those happy Glock owners out there. They have found their niche in the shooting universe.

  • Matt Laird October 7, 2016, 1:25 pm

    I have been a Marine and I have been a Police Officer, I own and have owned both pistols along with the P-35 or Browning Hi-Power, Beretta 92s and the great Sig P220, P225, P226, and the P228, I really never liked the P229. I have used all of these either on duty or off duty and trusted my life to them. I do agree about the Glock over the 1911. The 1911 is a great pistol I have some great 1911s and I love shooting them but if I had to take one gun and one only for multipurpose, combat to concealed carry, shit hits the fan use, it would be the Glock every time. Hate them all you want, their performance proves itself. After the Glock, I would choose a Sig P226 or P228 then the Beretta 92. My last choice for an extreme use pistol would be my 1911s. As I have said, they are great guns and have served well but like many a uniformed individual that has seen the trials and tribulations of service have said about lots of other gear, “there is just better shit out there…”

    Kind regards all… SEMPER FIDELIS!

    Matt

    • Tripwire October 10, 2016, 12:34 pm

      Matt
      Well said, I too am both a former Marine and LEO and I agree 100 percent with you, I sometimes feel that I’ve owned at one time or another damn near every type of handgun out there from a 1917 Colt chambered in 45 long Colt to my high dollar CZ match gun.
      I don’t care for the 9mm as far as a combat round but in truth with the advances made in the bullet world the 9mm is doing much better, but, the military isn’t carrying those kinds of bullets.
      I use 9mm for matches like Steel Challenge and USPSA, I use .40 in some other matches when there is a lot of heavy steel to take down.
      But at the end of the day I want a heavy all steel gun and if it’s not a 1911 it’s a CZ and in nothing smaller than .40 near to hand for my real world issues gun.
      I own a Glock, well it’s actually a Lone Wolf gun but it is a Glock in all but name, I have it, I don’t shoot it much, I don’t care for the way they feel, but I got it because I also have a pistol cal. carbine made by PSA, this one is in 9mm when they make a .40 I’ll get that, but in the mean time my G-35 has a 9mm bbl in it, all this because my PCC takes Glock mags, so I wanted my hand gun to use the same mags. A word about the PSA PCC, mine is awesome! USPSA has allowed PCC’s in matches so I shot mine in two matches and had a ball!
      But, I own more 1911 type guns then anything else,
      Ain’t it great to be an American?? to be able to say “I have to many handguns”, I “Should” thin the herd, We debate whats best when 98 % of the world can only look at them on the net, poor bastards.

  • Ashley Coco October 7, 2016, 1:08 pm

    Clay — Decent article. And if your 1911 is still in the trash, you can ship it to me. Let me know if you need an address!

  • Frank Engle October 7, 2016, 1:01 pm

    I have owned Colts, Kimber and Sig 1911’s and Glock 24, 34,35. & 23’s and shot a lot of reloads out of all. Although I never had a failure with any of them, I have personally seen two Glocks go auto or double burst and one slide fall clear off during tactical shoots. I would also point out that many police officers and others have shot their own hand while improperly pulling the trigger without clearing the chamber (since you don’t have to pull back the slide to remove it and must pull the trigger). It is a well published fact.
    Regarding the reliability of the the 1911, almost all of the experiences most owners have had are not on the original gov. issue 1911A1. The 1911’s of various makes are built to tighter tolerances for accuracy and have given up the original Mil Spec dimensions developed for mud and sand uses. Those 1911A1’s were very reliable in harsh conditions, and met very severe testing before the original 1911 was adopted and improved as the 1911A1.
    Capacity is a major issue as well as reliability. I have chosen to standardize on the Springfield XD and XDm series for several reasons: Loaded Chamber indicator, Grip Safety in addition to trigger safety, and larger metal on polymer slide guides (that are easier to clean as well). My XDm 9 has std capacity of 19 rounds and my XD 45 tactical has 13+1. These are big advantages over 7 or 8 rd magazines.
    One last point if favor of newer polymer weapons is the ease and speed of mag changes. Both the Glock and XD series have tapered double stack magazines and with or without a mag well, it is much easier to do a fast exchange, as the tapered end of the magazine itself will help guide the magazine home into the pistol grip.

    • Dee October 7, 2016, 2:45 pm

      As to people shooting their hands with Glocks… that’s their own fault for not having proper gun handling skills and not clearing their weapons. That’s basic gun safety. The fact that you could blame a weapon for the operator being shot is ludicrous.

    • Kivaari October 7, 2016, 6:50 pm

      When both the Army and AF tested the pistols running to replace the M1911, they tested the M1911 to the same standards demanded of the other pistols so they could get a BASELINE. The M1911 had a horrible record of failures. A couple candidate weapons did worse during the tests and they did not proceed. But several guns outperformed the M1911. The Glock did not even exist at the time.
      Since then, the Glock has proven itself to be a better performer in more hands than the M9, M11 and the other also issued pistols.

  • Dan October 7, 2016, 12:40 pm

    Clay,
    Good article. I’m not one of the guys who has tons of trigger time, just an average Soldier for over 20 yrs with lots of friends who do have that kind of experience, both SOF and LE (state and fed). I’ve carried for work almost all those years, have put thousands of rounds thru 1911, M9, and personal weapons (.45 CZ and Sig 320). I do work EOD (Bomb Squad) and as such have to remind everyone here of one thing- everything fails, it’s just a matter of when. 99.9% reliability means that 1 in 1000 times something goes wrong. A friend related his story of just such with a Glock. Dropping in on bad guy (literally- down a hole) surprised bad guy 3 ft to front, Glock pulled, trigger pulled, CLICK. Slide racked to rear, pull trigger, CLICK.

    This friend is not average Joe. He probably put 5K rounds thru that particular Glock that year. Point here, shit happens. Fortunately that friend knew to use said Glock as hammer to finish fight. All is well, friend has no new holes in him. What does he carry now? Same Glock. Still works, just got a couple of bad rounds. 99.99% meant 2 rounds ended up in bad sequence. For all you couch critics- he checked his ammo before the action. Shit happens.

    In picking my personal weapons for home, I stay big and go reliable- CZ in .45. Why? Friends in Israel swear by them. Never had a feed problem in thousands of rds of ball, wadcutter, hp. That gun is a feeding slut. SA/DA means I have choice, and striker hits on misfire simply by pulling trigger again. NEVER had second misfire in all those rounds. Primer has cooperated on repeat of trigger action (something lacking in most strikers). IF I ever do run into that problem, nice thing with that CZ is it is a heavier gun to beat person with.

    As many astute writers have noticed, most important feature of a gun is the operator. Both have to feel comfortable. I could second guess the Corps about their choice but it is rational. Glock is better than current M9 for many reasons and has better track record if you’re going back to 9mm. Personally, think Sig 320 is better (Glock guys usually flock to mine at the range and have “that look” after I let them shoot it- LOL), but military beauracracy is tough, and bet that Sig was not a choice due to availability.

    Thanks again- stay safe brother.

    PS- A10 direcct fire CAS/JDAMs are always better, artillery close second

    • Kivaari October 7, 2016, 6:58 pm

      That’s called divine intervention. God just said NO, it wasn’t time to shoot anyone. Asks cops you know if they know of other instances when the gun just wouldn’t fire. I know of one involving two WSP troopers where their kidnapper (yes he got the drop on them) put his gun to the bakcs of their heads multiple times and the gun did not go off. Than at the lab, they used the perps gun with the perps ammo and they couldn’t get the gun to misfire. Or the shots over the hood of a car where the arms of the officer and the perp crossed and no one was hit with any of the 12 shots fired.

  • Jake October 7, 2016, 12:27 pm

    I have or have had ’em all. How about 13 rounds of .45 in a high cap Glock or HK, XD, M&P etc? That said, I am over the moon over my new Ruger American 9mm. I would choose that. All the muscle memory learned from years of the 1911 translates with this new Ruger. Everything is where it should be if you are an old 1911 aficionado, only on both sides. Novak sights and the best out of the box striker trigger I have yet found. You can find them in the $300’s too. Ruger has a huge winner in the American.
    While I like the .45 a whole lot, I remember one SF guy relating a gunfight in San Salvador in the 80’s where he did not have his 1911 and was “stuck” with a Browning HiPower 13+1 9mm. They were in a cafe and assaulted quickly and continuously. At the end his 14 rounds were all gone. After the adrenaline wore off he realized how dead he would have been with 8 rounds of anything in that situation.

  • Tommy Barrios October 7, 2016, 12:25 pm

    Screw all of this my semi-automatic is better that yours crapolla!

    I have carried and am very DEADLY with my S&W Model 15 Combat Masterpiece since 1970 as it works every time, has NEVER given me a problem and will continue to NEVER give me a problem!
    I keep it loaded with 158 gr meat mashers for carry and shoot 148 gr wad cutters when practicing, draw and fire, double action, single action, you name it, center mass and head shot ALL DAY LONG!
    It’s about FIRST SHOT Accuracy folks and NOT how many or the size of the freaking rounds you are carrying! (I was taught from the Elmer Keith school of handgun shooting)
    Get it done with the first three rounds or don’t get it done at all 😉
    I’ll take on any of you semi-auto gun fanatics any day and drop your ass on the first two rounds!
    That said, I would not want to carry my Sweet 15 as primary into a room full of thugs, for that I’ll use a thirty round clip full of 5.56 hollow points in my bad ass custom made Bushmaster 😉
    But I’ll still have my Sweet 15 in a shoulder holster with two speed loaders 😉
    Each to his own I say, but I’ll stick with I have and have used effectively for over 40 years 😉
    If I were to get an semi-auto pistol though, I would lean towards the FN 57, with 30 rounds of meat shredders 😉
    Keep yourselves safe, keep the peace and VOTE TRUMP 😉

    • Anybody but Clinton October 7, 2016, 9:42 pm

      It is a magazine not a “clip” moron. “Bad ass custom made Bushmaster” Does your head even fit through a standard size door?

    • wake_up_america October 9, 2016, 11:46 am

      Easy there Francis (Stripes) . . . . .put down that crack pipe Mr. Tuff Guy Junior on the loose.

  • Doc 3616 October 7, 2016, 12:23 pm

    I spent several years working for one of our govermental agencies in SE Asia many years ago. It was those plasces where various presidents denied we existed. My job was to provide security to some special pilots on special little air bases. Many days and nights were spent in the jungle waiting for someone who was not invited to walk by. I carried a European sub gun, rwo 1911’s and a K-Bar. In the years I spent in Inian Territoy I was involved in more armed actions than I kept track f. That was my job, to find trouble along with some indigenous personnel and a few other team members. My 1911s were cleaned, lubricated and treated as if my life might depend on them. They never failed me when It would get me killed but the bad ammo and the fact that some of the ammo we got was fairly old and tended to turn green as you watched in 95 degree heat and 100 percent humidity. As much as I love the 1911 and I shoot them every week, I cannot be blinded by romantic memories. True, everyone I shot with a 45 died quickly with a good hit but a wounded man will still kill you regardless what you wound him with.

    Today, if I were put in The same places Imwprked Asia, Africa and Central America, I would use a moderb double stack 9mm loaded with modern expanding bullets. For the past 20 years, I have carried a Glock 19 loaded with good ammo using quality expanding bullets because of all the advantages. Lots of ammo, reliable, good in all weather and folks well shot are just as dead as those shot with a 45.

  • Lee Clark October 7, 2016, 12:16 pm

    I love both weapons and have no trouble with either. Won matches with my G19 and my TAC-S 1911. It’s all about your preference.

  • Pat J October 7, 2016, 11:55 am

    Accurate with both types, really enjoy a 1911 in 45ACP and 10mm. That being said, I have over 30,000 rounds through a G30, and over 15,000 rounds through both a newer G21and older G20. Almost all rounds have been reloads. Springs wear out as Glock cautions, but as yet, nothing else. I recently bought a G19 MOS out of fear for mag capacity legislation, and MOS for quicker fire with weakening eyes. I intend to buy the same setup in G17MOS for barrel length. I dislike the arrogant Austrians, too, but if all you look at are Glocks they become passably handsome like AK 47s. Besides, I really like $500 pistols and $500 horses, both are better with training and acquire an acceptable patina with time and use. I intensely dislike prettied-up Glocks and AR15s.

  • Sgt. Pop October 7, 2016, 11:19 am

    Good write up Clay. Like a number of “old fart” readers, I was born a 1911 guy, have used/carried them most of my adult life. I currently have 4 different 1911 platforms several TZ 75’s, M9/92’s, etc., all have had many rounds through them, however, some years ago I ended up with a NIB Springfield XD .45. Looked ugly as hell, like a Glock. After 800 or so rds. shooting local police dept. .45 “turn in ammo” in one day, without a failure to fire or feed, liked it so well I ended up with another one. First Glock I ever fired was a 21, I bought (thank god I can buy “Blue Label”) so to shoot in GSSF matches in “Heavy Metal” class. Many rounds later ( about 4800) and many, many dry fires later with the 21 shooting GSSF indoor league against mostly 9mm’s, I sold both the XD’s to get a Glock 41. The Glock 21 keeps me in the top 3 or 4 in stock and unlimited. Yes, all my 1911’s are more accurate, but after having to use the Glock as much as I have, learned to like and trust it. I’m too old to go play in anymore “sandboxes” around the world, but the first handgun I’d take is my Glock, but if for some reason I could only have one defensive handgun to putter around the farm with in my old age, it would be one of my1911’s, cocked, on safety, in my Yaqui belt holster.
    I’d never criticize anyones choice of “carry” especially if they practiced, could use it well and was comfortable using it (practice). Hell, I know one person that consistently carries a single action Colt 73. Laugh if you will, but you wouldn’t if you had to shoot against him in a SASS match with a pair of them. Again, he practices with them weekly, uses them well, and is comfortable using a SA. Not for everyone but works for him, what works for you? Pop

  • Carl B. Case October 7, 2016, 11:18 am

    Anyone who would chose a GLOCK over a 1911 is a Damned Fool! Glock is good for NOTHING – other than a deep-lake fishing weight! So whoever wrote that crap is a moron! They should not be handling firearms!

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 11:48 am

      wow! that is a pretty deep rant! So, I guess all of the SEALS, Green Berets, MARSOC, Rangers, CCT’s, and other assorted goons that have chosen Glock are morons? And we shouldn’t be handling firearms? I’ll go tell the guys. Guess we are back to slingshots for backup guns. Thanks Carl. Oh, I almost forgot about the 70% of police departments in this nation that picked Glock. I’ll pass the word to them too.

    • Tripwire October 7, 2016, 1:33 pm

      Sorry dude, Clay knows more about this stuff than you do obvious from you’re comment.

    • Kivaari October 7, 2016, 7:05 pm

      I can own and pretty much have owned anything I ever wanted. I hated Glocks until I was issued a M17. 30,000 rounds of use and they issued me a new Glock 34 because I just wanted to try one for duty. The old 17 was working fine. In our small department the only trouble we had with M17s and M19s was one double charge that cracked a frame. That done, it kept on working. I did trust my life to that gun. I became a believer. I’d already learned decades earlier that the M1911 just was not a reliable pistol.

  • Kalashnikov Dude October 7, 2016, 11:15 am

    I carried both types for a lot of years. Never had a malfunction with my 1911. Not so with the Glock. And the scary part is that it was a situation where it had spent most of it’s time in the holster, a full coverage duty holster(Bianchi Accumold) as a matter of fact. I had pulled it out on the range intending to cycle the ammo in it and replace it with newer stuff. Click! Click! The nature of the malfunction seemed to be about lubrication and possibly weak springs. The round had not fully entered battery. If at any other time I had depended on that Glock for survival, I would be dead. That one was sold shortly after and replaced with a ………. you guessed it, 1911. Meanwhile I never experienced anything like from a Norinco Model Of The 1911 Compact, which I carried over the years in many different styles even on the ankle occasionally. Try that with a Glock. Anecdotal sure. But fact for me. That Glock is gone. Hardly means I will not own another. But ensnaring me in some kind of myth of super reliability Glocks exhibit is gonna be a hard sell. Now I also have a first hand account from back in the early 2000’s about a Glock slide coming off the frame during firing as well. I was there as it happened to my friend at the range. I watched as he attempted to get satisfaction from Glock and he didn’t even get acknowledgement. Again, I don’t pass up Glocks. But they sure don’t inspire loyalty, or even necessarily trust with me. That’s how it is.

    • don October 7, 2016, 2:55 pm

      I had one blow up on me,glock said f u, $450 we will fix it,I told them for 450 I could buy one of their pieces of shot that hadn’t blown up and that I’d never shoot one again

  • GradyPhilpott October 7, 2016, 11:13 am

    “Finally, even the dinosaurs over at Mother Corps….”
    Better a dinosaur than a horse’s ass, I guess.
    How about a little respect, Martin?
    We are the United States Marine Corps.

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 11:27 am

      So was I. And if you don’t think the USMC is the personification of old school, sometimes to a fault, we served in two very different Corps.

      • Old Marine October 7, 2016, 12:53 pm

        Old school, schmold school, dinosaurs my ass… IF you were a Marine, act like it! Don’t let that Army chitt that you picked up, when you bailed from the Corps, cloud your respect for our Corps. I’m not lookin’ for a little respect, I better be seeing ALL of it. There is only ONE Marine Corps. Dinosaurs my ass….

      • GradyPhilpott October 7, 2016, 10:49 pm

        We served in the same Corps and I’m well aware of how strictly the Corps adheres to what works, before moving on to newer things. This strategy was brought on by the strict budgetary constraints of my days and before. In those days, the Corps operated to the highest standards with equipment that the Army used up and threw our way.

        But if you think that the Corps is not innovative, then perhaps you didn’t bother to gain some historical perspective during your tenure.

        May I suggest the book, “First to Fight” by Lt. Gen. Victor “Brute” Krulak. I read it for the first time some thirty years ago and some ten years after I mustered out. It gave me a new respect and understanding of the Corps I proudly served.

        SF

  • Thomas October 7, 2016, 11:07 am

    We’re all allowed to make mistakes, even operators and their commanders. LOL
    1911 loyalist “for” life.

  • Tom Horn October 7, 2016, 11:07 am

    I still say, buy American/build American. I have a S&W M&P45 w/2500+ rounds through it without a mis-feed/malfunction, and have great trust in it. With the 14 round extended mags it only gives up one round to the G19, 10+1 standard. Storm Lake barrel upgrade makes accuracy on par with Glock 19. .45 ACP creates wound channels/hydro static shock enough to perhaps stop a khat chewing Islamic extremist charging at you in CQC. Wouldn’t argue with those expounding .357 Sig round. Perhaps Ruger SR45 could be considered. I have objections to Springfield XDM .45 ACP, as it is made in Croatia. Hate to rely on foreign countries for our arms when the world falls apart.

  • Steve G October 7, 2016, 11:02 am

    Hey Clay – this article was like a cold beer after a long day…refreshing! As usual straightforward with proof points along the way. Outstanding. I really enjoy your articles. Keep up the good work.
    And I also enjoy watching the keyboard ninjas trying to tell you how it is. Effing funny right there. Oh hey, didn’t you think to bring a knife? hahahahahaha too much. Carry on.

    • clay October 7, 2016, 12:23 pm

      Thanks Steve. We keeps it gangster, but you have to know you are kicking over the hornets nest anytime you put ” Glock and 1911″ in the same sentence. Its almost a religious discussion.

  • Dan October 7, 2016, 10:47 am

    The tolerance issue is valid, I have a 103 year old 1911 my dad carried on the Canal, Cape Gloucester, Pelelieu, etc. No bluing left on it, pacific grime and sweat still on the grips, never one failure to fire then or now even with 1943 ball ammo. I have a tack driver Combat Elite, took about 200 rounds to free up. My choice should I have one would be a Para-Ordnance 14rd 45acp,
    more power and equal hits before reload.
    Semper-Fi

  • michael ryan October 7, 2016, 10:30 am

    As someone who supports the military and has family in every branch… I am perfectly content as a taxpayer for them to use more expensive daisy cutters rather than doing CQB.. I will pay extra. It’s much easier to clear a pile of rubble than an IED laced building. I truly do not care anymore about collateral damage… we are too soft as a nation. I think we need to have zero mercy on the enemy.

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 11:10 am

      I fully support that plan Michael.

    • Occams October 7, 2016, 11:13 am

      What ‘enemy’?

      The people protecting their countries we illegally invade over fraudulent reasons? Them?

      Or now that it’s out that ISIS BELONGS to Obama and Hillary, and the US military is supporting treason – and committing treason, ‘aiding and abetting the enemy’.

      Did you hear the recorded radio conversations of US military advising ISIS/al Nusra in Aleppo?

      Did you see yesterday that the US military is building a THIRD illegal airbase in Syria?

      Did you see the US military is now painting their jets IN RUSSIAN CAMO so they can bomb Syrian soldiers, UN convoys, and civilians – and blame it on Russia?

      We stand poised on the greatest danger of a nuclear event – more so than Cuba – and the US military just happily goes along with whatever a maniac puppet tells them to do?

      As they say, ‘wakey wakey’; The US government and military ARE the terrorists – along with Israel. Therefore, your family members are traitors.

      Sorry.

      • Willie-O October 7, 2016, 2:12 pm

        EXTREMELY disrespectful you worthless pile of camel crap. I agree with you about invading certain countries, but only on a “tactical” level – we should’ve turned the entire place into a mote desolate wasteland than it already is by way of carpet-bombing and missile strikes. Afterwards we could’ve sent fuckers like you in to assess the damage and then left you there so you could re-evaluate your perspectives and disloyalty. Become a volunteer for 3rd world seevice and shut the fuck up !!

      • GradyPhilpott October 7, 2016, 10:53 pm

        What a diatribe.

        You seriously need to run that all by your nearest mental health professional.

        Meds can help.

        • Wille-O October 8, 2016, 9:14 am

          Don’t think so jack-ass. Anyone that isn’t enrageed by the load of shit that “Puddles” is peddle’n is just as sorry and disrespectful as he is. I’m no fan of our dictator or hi-LIE-ry either, but if some douche referring to our military as “terrorists” doesn’t piss u off then there’s something wrong with u Pisspot !!

  • 1911 FanBoy October 7, 2016, 10:29 am

    I love my 1911’s. I’m carrying one right now, and carry one all day/every day.
    But I’m not taking it into battle – I’ll take my G20SF thank you.
    I’ve owned three Kimbers. All three went back to Kimber for work. Two went back twice, one went back three times over a period of a year and a half and was NEVER right. I never trusted any of the three to carry. They were made well, but way too tight and not at all reliable. My Colts, and even my (insert brand of choice) Phillipino made 1911s worked/work much better.
    I totally understand that a Glock would -probably- be the better choice in combat situations. I was at the tail end of the 1911 with the Army – as soon as I left they brought in the wonder-nine.
    I will argue 45 vs 9 for stopping power all day long, but in this combat specific role, more ammo is better than bigger ammo. Lets face it, not all service members are crack shots with a pistol. My infantry unit only had a few “select” people carry a pistol and if they qualified yearly it was simply just to qualify. Practice with a pistol was unheard of for most soldiers.
    So, if I had to carry in a combat situation, give me that ugly plastic Glock with the little bitty bullets. I’ll hate it, and I’ll bitch about it, but in the end that’s what I would choose.
    But don’t disparage my 1911. The -correct- 1911, well maintained, with a competent operator, will beat any Glock any day in reliability, accuracy, and potency. Unfortunately, with our “men” needing safe places today, the 1911 is truly outdated – the Glock IS more friendly and makes more sense as an overall combat weapon.

  • The Truth October 7, 2016, 10:22 am

    Sorry to burst your bubble, Clay but I have a 1911 I’ll stack up in terms of reliability against your mighty Glock anytime, anywhere. It was built by someone who actually knew what they were doing, and is no safe queen or range king. It has fired thousands and thousands of rounds through it reliably and is carried daily. I have done a fair amount of competing in my day, and although never fired one in combat I can tell you that the only gun that ever failed me during a match was a G-34 Glock pistol, at a Glock match right in front of Chris Edwards, their rep.

    For the record, this was a gun I had won a year previously at the very same match, and less than 200 rounds through it. Chris Edwards’ face turned three shades of white when the gun failed, and they ended up replacing the gun because the armorer simply could not get the gun apart. Later investigation found that the center block that holds all of the pins and linkages had broken in half, effectively locking up the gun.

    I will say Block replaced the gun without any questions, and I got a letter from Mr. Glock profusely apologizing for the mishap, but my point is that I never gush or worship any of my weapons because I have learned that they all break. I don’t care if they are plastic or not. Find one that works, one you trust and master it.

    • C.M. Chason October 7, 2016, 11:27 am

      Copy That! I don’t know where or what Clay has been shooting, but he is full-of-it! I will put my 1911 against ANY Glock Plastic junk anytime! I have owned 3 Glocks! TOSSED THEM ALL! My old Springfield Still works great! I have an Auto-Ord 1911 that I have rebuilt twice over the past 52 years, and it will outshoot ANY plastic Glock Toy anytime.

  • Infidel7.62 October 7, 2016, 9:55 am

    If they wanted to go to a striker fired piece of plastic they should have at least stuck with .45 caliber.

    • Kivaari October 7, 2016, 9:42 pm

      That ignores all the positive features a 9mm brings to the game. Like size. Read the article and see why they want the Glock in 9mm over any .45.

  • Nancy Merrell-Robertson October 7, 2016, 9:41 am

    What a great article! I love the way this gentleman writes. As a Glock 19 owner and lover (I have three of them), I appreciate hearing from an expert that I made the write choice — every time!

  • RD October 7, 2016, 9:40 am

    If the writer of the article does not like the 1911,then don’t use one! Please though,if you don’t want your 1911 send it to me! I’ll take it!

    • DG October 7, 2016, 11:42 am

      My thoughts exactly. I was ready to dig through his trash!

    • Kivaari October 7, 2016, 9:46 pm

      You missed something. The Marines want the Glock 19. The author just agrees with the Marines choice and explains why it is a good choice. The operating principles being the Glock and how it is used makes it a better choice for people that really need a pistol. I can’t see a downside to getting Glocks just like the other units are using. Especially knowing how much trouble 1911s are.

  • GreenWolf70 October 7, 2016, 9:29 am

    Yep, Jarheads kept overbuilding the 1911 until they got a $1,800 pistol that is essentially handbuilt and so tight it will fail in all the things it soldiered through for the last 100 years. Colt hired a retired 3 star who talked USMC into this abortion and then retired on his commission, hence the 3 stars on the slide. Now they just jump on the next best thing bandwagon without a thought. Glock has some significant failings that everyone seems to overlook, rather than looking around for the best. Someone above mentioned those Turkish clones of the CZ-75, which probably is a better combat pistol than the Glock. My guess is the CZ P-01 and P-07 are probably better pistols than the Glock and already NATO certified. There is a reason you don’t let operators chose their weapons, they get too distracted by the shiny stuff. I mean, look at the disaster they made of the FN SCAR.

    • drfrankenklein October 7, 2016, 10:06 am

      About time someone pointed out how crappy and out dated a beaver tailed steel 1911 is… I was force to carry one of these on patrol depending on it for back up. I cringed every time I went on patrol strapping the 8rd. piece of malfunctioning unreliable junk. I would take a Glock in a heart beat as I know that this weapon has got my back in that pinch and accurate as hell with rounds to spare. I used both pistols and hands down Glock is a far better designed automatic pistol. As far a SCAR since you brought it into the picture. I think you better go back to doing you home work also.

  • James Erickson October 7, 2016, 9:14 am

    I love my 1911 in 45acp and there’s nothing to hate on it, but ill take lighter and more bullets any day then heavy less bullets caliber. When it comes down to it the shot placement is what stops a person/animal. That being said under stress how precise is that shot going to be? I’ll take the 15 smaller bullets over 8 bigger ones any day.

  • Jim Larson October 7, 2016, 9:13 am

    As a Marine, Mechanical Engineer and Gunsmith I can agree with you that the Glock is a good handgun, but in my opinion there are a number of superior striker fired polymer handguns out there. The Sig 320 and the Springfield XDm come to mind; they are just as reliable and have better ergonomics. Plus you don’t have to change the sights and triggers to convert them to usable weapons.

    • tsf October 7, 2016, 11:05 am

      Thumbs up to that.

  • Rick October 7, 2016, 9:06 am

    I would add ‘KNIFE” between Pistol and Rock.

  • GMan October 7, 2016, 9:02 am

    12 years in the Marine Corps, packed a 1911 the whole time. Twenty years as a Federal Agent, packed a Glock the whole time, in my 20 years operating a Glock not once have I experienced a malfunction…It’s accurate and functions well under extreme environmental conditions. And I’m a 1911 Lover and will always be.
    The simple fact is that from where I stand as a Law Enforcement Officer, I will always select the glock as my weapon of choice….if I had a choice.

  • John October 7, 2016, 8:50 am

    Have a turkish made SAR-K2 which is issued to Turkish Army in .45acp, it is a double stacker holding 14 rds plus one in chamber. It is about the size of a 1911 and a very accurate pistol. I picked this one up used and it is one of my favorite pistols. I am a great fan of a .45 acp, that’s what I was issued while serving in Army in the 60’s I also have a couple of 9mm for target shooting, but for carry it my .45 love the knock down power of it

  • Virgil October 7, 2016, 8:47 am

    When I first got to Vietnam (Infantry, I-Corps) in 1968 I sported a 1911 I got from the armorer. I cleaned it, oiled it and carried it in my standard holster. I had it for 5 days and one day in combat I decided to use it for some close-in work (gotta love I-corps) and when I pulled it, aimed and tried to fire, nothing happened. I threw it on the ground and continued working with my M-16. After the firefight I recovered the 1911 and found that it was so rusted that it was welded together. After 5 days! I sent it back on the next chopper. I have a Glock that I carry daily. It’s a Glock 22 converted to .357 sig, 14 round mag and the same energy at the muzzle as a .357 mag. She’s a power nailer. I can drop a bad guy with one round with the ’22. I wish I would’ve had that in ‘Nam.

    • joe October 7, 2016, 9:34 am

      Really? You didn’t notice the rust before you decided to use it? Welded together, come on…………..I call BS on this fairy tale.

      • Wayne Cook October 7, 2016, 10:07 am

        Odd isn’t it? I agree. Anyone who didn’t check all their weapons the day before a fight is just asking for disaster.

      • Robert October 7, 2016, 10:16 am

        I had 1911 in V N for 19 month I did not have one time that it let me down ,jest like the M 16 if you take care of it ,it will take care you . And by the way it will not rust if oiled on a day today maintenance

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 10:58 am

      Me thinks a bunch of people responding to your comment have never been to the jungle. Shit can rust over night in an environment like that, with ease. Good heads up Virgil, thanks for the comment

  • Tucker October 7, 2016, 8:25 am

    Jesus…. how many fingers do you have on your hands?

  • JW October 7, 2016, 8:22 am

    Good article, but like the M-14 in Vietnam, the Colt 1911 in WW II, Vietnam, and later–knock-down power is not to be dismissed at all. One M-14 bullet, one 1911 bullet, can knock down when a Niner might need three rounds to do the same job. It’s kinda like the old B-52, the BUFF. When the B-2 bomber came out everybody said the old BUFF Was finished. When in reality it is still not just a symbol of projected U.S. military power globally, but a very powerful and long-range baby with a mad payload capability. And the BUFF is ancient. Still very reliable. I was enlisted in late 70s and early 80s in military law enforcement and we were issued Colt 1911s with two magazines extra, and if you are an expert shot, it will take down whatever comes with one clip and good back-up, and cover. Like the man said, two things you can never have enough of in a firefight: cover and ammo. The Glock has more bullets, lighter, reliable, all that. I say depends on the person. Confidence is a real force in human interaction–not just machinery. The Corps is correct to keep up and make necessary changes without sentimentality getting in the way. Use what works best. If it’s the Glock, for the troops, then go for it. Good move. Still, if I were Recon, SOC, today, in a jungle environment, I’d much rather have that knock-down power for close combat. Desert conditions, mountains, I can see where you’d want the Glock. Great article! Good writer.

    • Linc Tendler October 7, 2016, 1:13 pm

      Well I gotta confess I’m a 1911 freak since Iraq and still use it for IPSC shootin. Had a Glock and never liked it (maybe I’m biased by the fact it’s a polymer-framed gun), but what the heck! I’d then rather go to an HK USP instead of a Glock when it comes to polymer. Bottom line the discussion is rather over .45 vs 9 mil and not 1911 vs Glock. .45 is a heavy n’ slow cartridge, yeah, but it takes care of business with only one shot if one knows how to shoot accurately. Mid term conclusion: go to a double-stack .45 w/o the fear of harming Mr. Browning’s feelings…

  • Jason October 7, 2016, 8:21 am

    There was a reason the old hands dug through the box to find the ones that rattle. Take it from a machinist and ex military.
    The 1911’s that are made today are machined on CNC machine’s to tight tolerance’s. The 1911 wasn’t designed to be super tight or a tack driver. It was designed to be dropped in the muddy trenches of earlier wars and still go bang. Any questions about reliability. Read about the torture test for acceptance by the military in the early 1900s. Sand,mud,deformed and miss loaded ammo. http://www.m1911.org/history.htm. When they were machined on manual machines with loose tolerances and fitted. Not too condusive to mass production. Or fire a WW2 era 1911 and see how many rounds it will spit out without a hiccup. The real advantage a polymer gun has on a properly machined and loose fitted 1911 is capacity and polymer doesn’t rust. I own both a polymer gun and 1911. The reliability issues of modern 1911’s are the result of modern mass production practices.

    • Jason October 7, 2016, 11:02 am

      I agree with Jason above..and yes nice name 🙂

      Disclosure: This is my opinon and do not reflect the views of my agency. I am making these comments as a private citizen.

      I had 3 glocks malfunction on me while working at a police department that were new and department issued. I was told Glock said it was a firing pin issue all 3 times and 3-4 months apart. They finally let me go back to my tried and true 1911 Delta Team Elite 10mm. Love my rattle and never had an issue through thousands of rounds. In fact, I fired it straight off the shelf after it sat for 1 year with no issues. When I opened the box the gun seemed to smile and say welcome home.

      I dislike Glocks and you will never be able to change my mind. It’s less accurate than a 1911.

      I won’t try to change anyone’s mind about a glock, it’s user preference…. But, I think I have a valid argument on why I don’t trust them. By the way it was a Gen 2 Glock 17 I had all the issues with.

      I now carry a SIG 226 .40 for work and while it’s not the 1911 I will take it over a glock.

      I will say I own several XD’s and do not have an issue with them at all.

      Just my 2 cents…

  • Dave October 7, 2016, 8:17 am

    Another gun mag commando opines, using all the same, stupid old cliches. How come none of these so-called experts never address the fact that Glocks are unsafe trash with which there are more unintentional discharges than anybody wants to admit to. Not only are they fugly and inconcealable but there is no FUNCTIONAL active safety feature. Couple that unassailable fact with a 5-pound trigger pull and it spells disaster waiting to happen. Go to a 12-pound trigger pull and you might as well carry a double-action revolver. They’re even more reliable than a plastic pistol. As for which is better, 9mm or .45, it’s an intelligence test — like Hillary or Trump? Or was O.J. really innocent. You can learn all you need to about a person’s intellect by the way they answer those questions.

    • Paul Helinski October 7, 2016, 8:23 am

      Clay was a recent USMC Scout Sniper and US Army Green Beret. The accidental discharges are from those who leave their finger in the trigger guard while re-holstering.

      Hey gang, do you think we should just delete comments from dumb fucks like this? Or should we call them names?

      • Chris October 7, 2016, 9:59 am

        Delete the dumb fuck

      • KC SMITH October 7, 2016, 10:45 am

        Paul, shut the fuck up, you dipshit.

        • clay martin October 7, 2016, 10:59 am

          Dear KC,

          why don’t you go choke on a bag of dicks. way to elevate the discussion the grown ups are having.

          Clay

          • KC SMITH October 9, 2016, 11:11 am

            Clay,
            Look, fuckwit, I wasn’t the one that started the name calling, but since you replied to me directly I guess its OK for me to tell you that your writing skills are just childish, and the overcompensation is blatantly obvious in your tone. Yeah, your replies here are serious highbrow grownup shit. Get over yourself, grow up, and when you’re done with that, go fuck yourself. Fucking clown.

      • Andrew October 7, 2016, 11:06 am

        Call them names….

        Things wrong with this post…
        1st: Glocks are as safe as any other pistol. It is the person using it that is unsafe. Why do we have more AD with Glocks than anything else? Well, for one because people do not follow the basic rules of handling a firearms. Another is that Glock is the most issued firearm to police departments who are unfortunately extremely under funded and under trained.

        2nd: Since when does a firearm being …. “fugly”…. have anything to do with its function? If the damn thing goes BANG every time I pull the trigger that is all that matters. It can look like damn stapler for all I care. Reliability is the main point of any combat/carry gun. Also, concealability…. I can with almost 100% guarantee that the most used CCW pistol in existence today is a Glock 19….. The mid size pistol….. It is extremely concealable.

        3rd: “Active Safety Feature”….. This is that thing that sits between your ears… It is what controls your firearm. As long as you have the pistol in a safe holster that covers the trigger then you have nothing to worry about. The Glock will not….. WILL NOT….. go off unless you pull the trigger.

        4th: Your double action theory is hilarious. Yes, a double action revolver is reliable. Also, their triggers are atrocious for the most part. You only have 6…..7 rounds at the most. Only 5 in the case of any concealable revolver. Less than a 1911. And when a revolver does malfunction (yes, it happens) they are out. There is no “Tap, Rack, Bang” with a revolver. They are impossible to clear in a stressful environment. When a Glock malfunctions (Yes, it does happen) as long as it is not catastrophic clearing the pistol and getting it back into the fight is relatively simple.

    • GradyPhilpott October 7, 2016, 11:26 am

      I carry a Glock every day. I don’t care how fugly it is and I can conceal the 17, 19, and the 26. I choose the 26, because it’s most easily concealed. As for an external safety, keep your finger off the trigger and there’s no need for one.

  • Rick Sands October 7, 2016, 8:14 am

    How about a new Walther PPQ-45? Best of all worlds. Twelve+1 rounds of .45ACP stopping power, super reliable, light and accurate with the best trigger in the production handgun market. Pair it with Federal Premium HST rounds and it’s unbeatable.

    • Leighton Cavendish October 7, 2016, 6:46 pm

      18 in a Glock with good 9mm ammo…faster and more accurate follow-up shots…more rounds/mag…and the holes/wounds are not distinguishable from a .45 per medics and ER docs
      Nobody EVER said they want LESS ammo in a gunfight…NEVER!!!
      Just have to give up ball ammo.

  • SGT-N October 7, 2016, 8:08 am

    I would use my knife/bayonet before a rock or toaster, but I didn’t go through any elite training so I may not have had the correct compartmentalized clearance for the rock/toaster FM or TM that explained their superiority over long, double-edged, razor sharp implements. On the other hand, I have more faith in the rock or toaster than the Glock because one has to change out everything from the plastic sights to the lousy trigger; yet, cannot change the ridiculous grip angle. Any way, I’ll take my SIG P226R, my P229R, or even my single stack P239 in 357 SIG over any Austrian Block … I mean Glock. Before some chucklehead furiously types up a flame regarding my choice of ammunition, I know that it’s not in the standard TO&E, that some people believe it is a flame throwing mule, and that you can’t load as much as of it in a mag as the glorious 9mm. So what, it’s my personal choice to use it in what are now American pistols. If you don’t like my choices in ammunition or firearms, cradle your 9mm Glock and tell it not to listen to the mean man.

    PS: Maybe DOD should adopt a 1911 in 9mm so everyone is happy. Just a thought.

    • SGT-N October 7, 2016, 8:17 am

      I forgot my SIG 1911 in 357 SIG. I’m going to change my SIG MPX carbine to 357 SIG as well.

  • ToddB October 7, 2016, 8:06 am

    Surprised more haven’t piled on in favor of the 1911. Form up a mob with tar and feathers for the heresy of talking bad about the 1911. Hey I like the 1911, but it would not be my first choice to carry into combat. Everybody acts like its a primary weapon so you better pick old slab sides. Its a back up weapon which means your going to carry it, and carry it, and carry it. The only time it will come out of the holster is to make sure its clean. So why carry a brick? Was a time and place when had the option of carrying a full sized weapon on my hip. A 1911 gets real heavy, real fast. Even an all metal Browning HP was a joy to carry after dragging that 1911 around. I keep seeing the argument of shot placement, yea great at the range. But in an environment where you actually need that pistol, shot placement will be the least of your concerns, but rounds on target. A 9 generally carries 2x as many in a mag so you have a few extra if need be. And sorry as much as we all like the 1911, they are not exactly the most reliable gun. Yea after you mess with them they can be. But hard to find a tupperware gun that wont work out of the box and continue to work, even when neglected.

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 9:29 am

      Solid points ToddB. Shot placement gets real messy when target and shooter are bobbing and weaving.

  • Sam October 7, 2016, 7:53 am

    People like you are the reason terrorists exist at all…

    • clay martin October 7, 2016, 9:30 am

      Not my fault they breed like rabbits. I did help keep the population down for a long time though.

  • Tom October 7, 2016, 7:48 am

    Let’s hear it for the FN 5.7 !!! :)))

  • Ralph October 7, 2016, 7:34 am

    Thank you for service and this article. I love Colt 1911’s, their history, form, function and that big ole sug they hurl down range. I was issued a 1911 in the Corps, trained on it and I am proficient with it. In a combat situation urban or otherwise I carry two Glocks., a 19 and a 42 as back up in an ankle holster. It took me years to transition from 1911 to the Glock, I had my biases and didn’t like the early Glocks. I think they are both fine weapons and both will get the job done. There are two things in a gunfight you can never have too much of and that is ammo and cover. The fact that my Glock carries 15+1 means I am in the fight twice as long before a pit stop. I know what people are thinking training shot placement those are all great things and are no excuses for not having as much ammo available in a mag as is possible. For me reliability of the Glock along with having a bigger gas tank has won me over. I still have and love my 1911’s and if that’s all I had I would use it but I love my Glocks too.

  • Tom Horn October 7, 2016, 7:32 am

    Why not the Glock 20? Reliability, and knock down power. Just sayin’.

    • Wes October 7, 2016, 11:24 am

      One word……….women.

    • Avery Herring October 7, 2016, 12:14 pm

      I was thinking the same thing. I love my Glock 20, 15 rounds of a caliber more powerful than even the mighty 45. Why is it that some people think because you scrap the 1911 you have to scrap the 45 also there are a lot of plastic guns that use the 45. I still believe in physics big bullets do more damage than small bullets.

      What about the Glock 21 13 rds or the Springfield XD 14rds of 45. I still like the 1911 and I carry one a lot but you can’t argue with the Glock’s record of reliability and accuracy but if you want to get rid of your 1911 I’ll take it.

  • Dave K. October 7, 2016, 7:22 am

    I’ll admit, I’m a 1911 enthusiast (I don’t see a point in being a fanboy of any gun, as they make or break their own reputation), but I’m fine with the USMC’s choice, as long as they’re not limited to FMJ rounds. If FMJ is the only round allowed, I hope they can substitute a Glock in .45. Great article. Hope to see more like this.

  • Me October 7, 2016, 7:19 am

    Dear Clay,
    I have fired many rounds, but none of them actual military or police combat. However, after the period involving the calamity of the cancer of the Colt horse, the only revolver or a semiauto that has never truly malfunctioned for me was a 1992 version Belgium Browning Hi Power purchased back then new from SOGD (the only issue – the adjustable rear sight would move). Sometime between 1974 and 1980, the newly purchased 1911s did not work very fine at all for me without an additional $500 in new parts and expert redoing to the existing $500 pistol. Eventually, one came apart in the 2007 time frame (after being reworked by real experts) while I was shooting a CWL requirement: The new fangled safety that Colt put out as the Series 80 is not a pistil I will ever own again. Imagine not being able to get through 50 rounds during a CWL requirement. So, I stopped using 1911s. Of course, I also experienced malfunctions with revolvers (except for Colt Python of 1972, but I did lose a part off that one – easily replaced – but a malfunction just the same).

    Eventually and perhaps from frustration, I bought a Glock. In fact, I eventually bought several Glocks. And, they malfunctioned. The worst (2010 or so) was a new Model 30SF, which malfunctioned many times before parts were replaced. I still do not trust it, but I still do have it. Except for hunting wild hogs, probably never will carry it as this particular Glock tied or exceeded the 1911 as to the number of malfunctions per round attempted. The second malfunction runner-up was a Model 20 10mm, but that sequence of malfunctions was very short lived and stopped malfunctioning on its own. The third malfunction candidate was a Model 38 45 GAP, and that malfunction occurred only once – due to an oval shaped factory round that would not feed in the chamber even with the barrel off the frame. Lesson learned: do not trust factory ammo without chamber checking.

    I would have loved to own a Paraordnance in 45 ACP (one of the low capacity double action similar types) but that never happened. I did, however, run through three small 1911 type 45 ACP semiautos (1977 to 1981), prior to the availability of the Paraordnance, and none of them ever reliably worked.

    What is next? After returning, maybe a Glock 36. Why? Are the smaller polymer Kahr 45ACPs, absolutely reliable? They have absolutely no safety levers to fiddle with. They work more like a double action revolver, But a Manurhin 83 revolver with a 3 inch barrel and fixed sights (which has not been made for at least a couple of decades) would probably work and last indefinitely. Yes, it would be heavier, which was never a problem in past years. I would prefer a larger hole than a 357, but I am a dinosaur.

    After a few years in the USMC back in the early 1970s, I respect your opinion, but think I prefer my own based on my own limited experience even without combat time in the jungle, sandbox, swamp or wherever else (even though I have worked ranch security as a teenager, which can be exhilarating). It would be nice if stuff would just work as it is supposed to but, it doesn’t. The US Military proved that with the M16, and then proceeded to complain about “people” not keeping their weapons clean in environments where keeping weapons clean was hardly an option. So, why should I trust the weapons Czars of the US Military to make good choices? I have even seen, in the last year, the current crop of M16s and M4s jam in other’s hands as well as my own.

    Even though the cardinal rule of a gunfight is to have a gun. sometimes it does pay to bring a knife, a club, or a baseball bat, which are all very simple in function and use.

    Current Location? Just a hop, skip, and a jump from some place outside the US that you do not want to be

  • tony October 7, 2016, 6:46 am

    I compete with the 1911 and many 2011 but carry the G19 and the 36.
    that being said I LOVE ALL my 1911s and 2011s, When I go to the range I take those.When I am at work or out and about in the concrete crap I’m packin my plastic usually with backup G17 mags for reloads.

    REMEMBER APPLICATION SPECIFIC DOES NOT MEAN ONE IE ALWAYS BETTER
    BE VERSATILE AND PROFICIENT WITH BOTH.
    RESPECT THE CLASSIC AS IT IS THE ELDER.

  • Yankeeclipper747 October 7, 2016, 6:33 am

    Interesting article and I wouldn’t presume to debate with someone with that experience. However, having said that; Clay, don’t throw your Kimber in the trash! Send it to me, I’d be glad to have it!

  • Robert October 7, 2016, 6:32 am

    Research…..Way back around 1905…..After the fiasco of combat in the Philippines…..The .38…..was not enough……same diameter as the 9mm. True the 9 is faster. Research…..Using single action colts in the Philippines showed the 45 caliber bullet was a one shot, one DOWN kind of round. Today, in the news we read where people are shot with 40 caliber pistols, multiple times……MORE THAN ONE SHOT. Will, even with modern bullet construction, a 9mm be enough to where MORE than one isn’t needed? How many shots with a 9mm average on a “take down?” How many rounds in the weapon? How many people can be engaged? Even our “long arms” have limits…..Magazines, filled, intense combat, NO TIME to recharge magazines……It would be smart to engage with the least amount of force to win……One well placed 45 or a FEW 9’s?

    • Charly October 7, 2016, 9:52 am

      My father carried a 1911 in WW2 without any problems brought it back home and shot it every weekend without any problems. 25 years later I carried that same pistol when I was in uniform and I NEVER had a single jam or any other problem with it. Of course I would have kicked the rear of any troop that failed to strip and clean any pw when ever conditions permitted and that is the key to reliability in any platform. Come get real – if you are going to possibly have to bet your life on any weapon aren’t you going to make damn sure it is at least clean? Your war isn’t mine but c’mon – not taking care of your equipment will get you killed real easy no matter whether you are in Normandy in 44, Wei in 68 or the middle east in 2016. I still have that old war horse and if God forbid i ever have to use it again to defend myself – I am sure it will do it’s part

    • Charly October 7, 2016, 9:52 am

      My father carried a 1911 in WW2 without any problems brought it back home and shot it every weekend without any problems. 25 years later I carried that same pistol when I was in uniform and I NEVER had a single jam or any other problem with it. Of course I would have kicked the rear of any troop that failed to strip and clean any pw when ever conditions permitted and that is the key to reliability in any platform. Come get real – if you are going to possibly have to bet your life on any weapon aren’t you going to make damn sure it is at least clean? Your war isn’t mine but c’mon – not taking care of your equipment will get you killed real easy no matter whether you are in Normandy in 44, Wei in 68 or the middle east in 2016. I still have that old war horse and if God forbid i ever have to use it again to defend myself – I am sure it will do it’s part

  • JiminGA October 7, 2016, 6:31 am

    My son-in-law’s dad was a radioman in Nam and carried a 1911. Due to the high humidity he often had to bang it against a tree to get it to operate. He had similar issues with his M14 and at the first opportunity to take an AK47 from a dead enemy, dropped his rifle and continued to carry the AK.

    I carry a 13 year old G17 that’s NEVER had a failure after about 1200 rounds per year, with all original parts. And I keep it in the 10 from 15 yards.

  • Chuck October 7, 2016, 6:25 am

    It is all a matter of personal preference. I prefer the 1911. You might prefer something else and that’s fine.

  • Barry Lentz October 7, 2016, 6:13 am

    What a great editorial! Well written, entertsining and insightful. I have 1911’s and M4’s. All tricked out and sexy. However, in my S H T F bag is a Glock 17 and a Polish underfolder AK because when SHTF it’s gotta go BANG when you pull that trigger. ex-USMC here. Besides, 9mm expandable bullet in the pipe with 16 of its siblings on deck in the magazine is a lot of last ditch firepower before you have to start whacking the bastards with your helmet, KBAR or entrenching tool. AMEN

  • Dustin Eward October 7, 2016, 4:35 am

    The Glock platform is excellent. It’s Statist Gaston that I despise. I’ll own a Glock-design when I can get it as a compact 80%, and build it with no actual Glock brand parts, giving none of my money to that d!ckb@g Gaston. Yes, I know, there’s a full-size already. I don’t like it.

  • Smokey Joe October 7, 2016, 3:56 am

    Skill trumps platform every time. However I fund it funny that this is even a topic. There are countless persons that have killed people with a 45acp and these are well documented. The 9mm in any platform is mediocre at best. Trust me recently a bad guy was shot 13 times “well” and lived. This was with the great 9mm. This is all well documented and and still people flock to the glock because it carries more bullets. Big deal learn how to shoot. Does everyone not know of Alvin York or how about John Basilone.

    • Ralph October 7, 2016, 7:47 am

      I thought this article was about the launcher and not the projectile? The writer wrote about reliability of platform in his opinion vs the 1911. Everyone has their own preference and motivation for which gun & caliber they carry. Hell even the military keeps going back & forth between 9mm & 45. The learn how to shoot comment when someone is shooting at you appears to be something the author has done. Poking holes in paper on a range vs people in a room or on a street are universe apart. I for one appreciate his input from experience.

  • Dave October 7, 2016, 3:29 am

    Great article! Neither good old nostalgia or new fangled gimmicks should ever trump proven & reliable function in what you choose to be in a gunfight with. There are numerous options now that are far more forgiving in environmental conditions & ammo choice than the 1911. Glocks, many Sigs & the Springfield XDs all quickly come to mind. Looking back through my own experiences those platforms all had fewer malfunctions than my 1911’s, low or high dollar, did.

  • DRAINO October 6, 2016, 8:23 am

    While some may have a choice of what they carry into combat……most don’t. They have what is issued. WHATEVER you carry….it’s your TRAINING with WHATEVER you carry that will save your butt….or your comrads’. If you can’t put holes where they need to be or keep it running……it doesn’t matter what you carry. And I don’t need to tell this audience that standardization is also a consideration for battle scenarios. Good article. Good info. Always good to hear from experienced folks….even if they disagree….lol.

    • clay martin October 6, 2016, 10:36 am

      This debate does seem to always bring out the emotions! Americans take pistols very seriously, and it shows anytime the debate comes up. No wonder the Joint Service Pistol is in its 12th year of selection.

      • ED October 7, 2016, 7:05 am

        I’ve always exposed “Shot Placement”. Let’s face it, Operators often fire more rounds in a year than some Police Forces.
        I’ve always taught, ” Slow (& Accurate) becomes Smooth, & Smooth becomes Fast”.
        And The Corps has always been know to be Parsimonious with money. Wondering how much $$$ they are saving???
        Yes, I agree that a GLOCK is more reliable. RE: High Cap Mags. Most of us are/were taught “Two in the Chest, & One in the Head”.
        In closing: a quality 9mm self-defense round is trying to get as big as 45ACP Ball already is.
        Message Ends…..

  • American October 5, 2016, 12:35 pm

    Clay= Whiskey might have been involved in the choice of a striker fired pistol. It would be hard to convince any 1911 COLT user to change to Glock anything. The 45 auto rules the knock down power world . Hey didn’t the plastic Glock in 45 auto FAIL ? I don’t know what rifle you carry and worry about a malfunction , but i used a COLT M-16 with 5000 yes 5000 rounds before it started to slow down and never had a malfunction. You didn’t say or i missed it what caliber Glock you use. Thanks for the article but I’ll keep using my 1911.Also I need to ad my son Staff Sgt USMC EOD with 2 combat tours says he’s keeping his 1911.

    • greatbeefalo October 6, 2016, 7:23 pm

      He said G19…which means 9mm. Good job reading the article.

      What does a Colt M16 have to do with 1911s? Oh wait. Colt fanboyism overrides logical arguments. My bad.

  • Will Drider October 5, 2016, 12:18 pm

    I have never taken someone elses choice of firearm/ammo as gospel, that is a fools errand. FBI tests are moot as our mil primarily uses Ball ammo (by choice and NATO STD, NOT Law or Convention). That said, at the recieving end for wound channel, cavitation, energy transfer and over-penetration: big hole beats small hole, the 45 APC is better. Keep in focus the primary use is not like a machine gun to Go through ranks of enemy troops, its to “stop” a threat at relatively close quarters.
    Platform is always a matter of choice and trade offs. Size, capacity, safeties, etcetera… authour touts the Glock selected for this relatively small comunity within the Corps but no mention that the Glock is not in the running as a replacement tor the current Service wide general military pistol.
    I couldn’t even guess the number of times I left the M60 in the door of a UH-1E and hit the bush with a 1911. Worked as advertised every time and it was a well worn. We had a choice between a 38 Spl or 45 APC, few took the 38. Everybody had a mixed bag of handgun backups. A “Service Weapon” is a dictate not a personal choice. Shoot what you shoot well, the rest is B.S. and not applicable to you, which is why I didn’t list my choice of gun or caliber.

    • clay martin October 5, 2016, 1:03 pm

      Fair points all, but my primary argument isn’t caliber, its platform. And Glocks take more abuse and require less maintenance in my experience. I don’t put much stock in the military choice of a service wide pistol either, last time that got us the Beretta 92, which is an abysmal pile of shit.

      • Glenn October 7, 2016, 6:31 am

        Precisely the opinion I gave of it when they stuck one in my hand after I was recalled in ’91. Got me, “watch your mouth” from the SFC, along with a “but I agree”.

        While the Glock isn’t my personal choice for CC as I’m not in love with it’s ergonomics, I would still rate it as probably the most reliable modern handgun on the planet. Damn good choice for a .mil service handgun.

        Only problem…now that the Corp has given up the 1911 in favor of plastic fantastic, what are they going to use as a hammer?

    • Starkiller October 7, 2016, 5:13 am

      I agree on the 45ACP being a more effective stopping round than a 9mm. It blows my mind that another flimsy 9mm was chosen over the mighty 45ACP. Especially when you have Polymers like the USP45, HK45, and the FNH (which is practically an upgraded USP45). The USP45 has already been approved by SOCOM, it has the reliability of a Glock with the safety accessories of a Berreta 92F . It’s my Duty pistol and it’s never Jammed on me. Oh and it’s dual stacked magazines holds 12+1. Accurate, Reliable mechanically, reliable round, and High Capacity. Trust me every time I’ve had to defend myself with my USP45 and I’ve had to a hand full of times in Houston. I get her rocking and roll’n people start hitting the ground, low crawling and roll’n for their lives if they aren’t shitting them selves. I scared the piss out of my work mates, they thought someone was shooting at me with a machine gun. Until they realized I was the one shooting back with my pistol at someones worthless excuse of a life. It was a drive by incident at a night club.

  • James M October 5, 2016, 8:41 am

    Well said. Just hope they dont trade in the hummer for a yoder.

    • clay martin October 5, 2016, 11:13 am

      lol. now that is a very good point.

  • T-man October 5, 2016, 5:01 am

    “JDAM laser guided bomb”…

    Isn’t JDAM GPS-guided, not laser-guided?

    • clay October 5, 2016, 10:54 am

      I think you got me on that one. whiskey may have been involved with the writing of this article

      • Fitz October 5, 2016, 12:02 pm

        GBU-54 equals Laser/JDAM. Dual use 500 pounder can be GPS or Laser guided. So you are safe saying laser guided JDAM bromiggo

        • clay martin October 5, 2016, 1:01 pm

          Saved by a JTAC! seems like that has happened once or twice in other arenas too!
          ( Fuck, I hope Fitz is a JTAC. The Air Force guys get all kinds of pissed off when you call a JTAC a CCT or vice versa.)

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