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October 15th, 2022

Saturday Movies: 1911 Pistols — Function, History, Features

1911 pistol handguns 3D animation cad john browning .45 acp race gun

The model 1911 pistol, designed by John Moses Browning, is an American classic. Originally manufactured as .45 ACP military pistols, modern 1911s have evolved to be superb competition pistols, and carry pistols. With a Single-Action-Only (SAO) configuration, the 1911 design is different than most modern pistols. You must have the hammer cocked to fire a 1911 — like a single-action revolver. But the positive side of the Single-Action design is than modern 1911 pistols enjoy superb triggers with very positive release and fast reset. There is a reason the 1911 design is the basis for so many modern competition pistols.

In today’s Saturday at the Movies feature, we showcase videos that cover the history, design, and function of 1911-type pistols. We also include videos that explain how to field-strip a 1911 and how to accessorize/upgrade 1911 pistols.

Operation of 1911 Pistol with 3D Animations

Here are two excellent videos that show how a classic 1911-type pistol functions. 3D computer graphics animation offers a X-Ray view inside the pistol, showing how cartridges feed and how the slide cycles during the firing process.

How to Field-Strip and Re-Assemble a 1911 Pistol

There are a few tricks to field-stripping a 1911-type pistols, and it helps to have a couple specialized tools. This helpful TFB-TV (The Firearm Blog) video shows the process of disassembling a 1911 pistol from start to finish, and notes components that require lubrication or special attention.

History of the Classic Model 1911 Pistol

The model of 1911 pistol is an American classic with a long and illustrious history. These two videos cover the interesting origins of the 1911 pistol, and explain how J.M. Browning designed the remarkable 1911 pistol which became the iconic American sidearm of the U.S. Military, the longest-serving pistol in American military history.

A fascinating article by Rock Island Armory covers the complete evolution of the 1911 pistol, including its earlier prototype variants, starting with the model of 1905. SEE: Road to the 1911 Article (with Model 1905, 1907, 1909, and 1910 prototypes).

1911 pistol handguns 3D animation cad john browning .45 acp race gun

Colt 1911 pistol animation 3D

Over time the 1911 design has evolved into many variants, including the modern “race gun” used in rapid-fire pistol competitions. Here is an STI DVC Open model fitted with a C-More sight, and front compensator.

1911 pistol handguns 3D animation cad john browning .45 acp race gun

Pistol Shooting Skills Demonstrated with 1911

How to Grip a 1911 Handgun Properly
World Champion pistol ace (and 18-time Bianchi Cup winner) Doug Koenig demonstrates how to grip a handgun. While the fundamentals are demonstrated on a 1911 pistol they are effective for establishing a proper grip on any handgun.

Trigger Press and Trigger Control
In this video Champion shooter Doug Koenig talks about key techniques that apply to all pistol marksmanship — not just speed shooting “on the clock”. With any handgun, Doug explains, you should focus on consistent trigger control. You want to avoid yanking the trigger or anticipating recoil.

How to Accessorize Your 1911

This six-part series by Brownells provides step-by-step instruction on how to accessorize your 1911. The videos cover changing out the mainspring housing, magazine release, slide release, hammer, guide rod, and installing a group gripper. If you want to upgrade your 1911, these videos are worth watching.




Slide Stop

Slide Stop

Full Length Guide Rod

Full Length Guide Rod

Wilson Group Gripper

Wilson Group Gripper

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October 15th, 2022

Reloading Manuals — Invaluable Resources for Hand-Loaders

reloading hand-loading reload data manual sierra berger hornady lyman

It’s great to be able to access online load data for your cartridges. You can quickly get load data for a particular powder and bullet weight. However, there are times when we prefer to consult old-fashioned printed/bound load manuals. The primary reason is that manuals produced by bullet- and tool-makers will, for a particular cartridge, include data for powders from multiple manufacturers. Having a single source can save you time and trouble. For example, if you want to find 6.5 Creedmoor loads using H4350 (Hodgdon), Reloder 16 (Alliant), and N150 (Vihtavuori) you would have to visit three different powder-maker websites, one after another. OR you can pick up a modern load manual and find everything in one place.

There are many excellent printed load manuals on the market. We have used the Berger Manual, Sierra Manual, Speer Manual, Lyman Manual, and Hornady Manual. We like the Berger and Sierra manuals for match rifle cartridges, and the Lyman and Hornady manuals for hunting loads and pistol cartridges.

The Lyman Reloading Manuals have earn praise over the years:
“Every other reloading book I’ve used favors their own bullets over every other manufacturers. With Lyman you get an honest representation of a wide variety of different… manufacturers. [Lyman has] a ton of reloading data on just about any bullet style you can imagine. I’ve tried a wide range of their recipes and everyone I’ve tried has been spot on. The overall breadth of information this book covers is impressive.” Review by

reloading hand-loading reload data manual Nosler 9 guide sierra berger hornady lymanNosler #9 Manual Features New Cartridges
If you are looking for up-to-date cartridge/bullet/powder information, in late 2020 Nosler released the Nosler Reloading Guide #9, the latest in a respected series of Nosler load manuals.

This 800-page guide covers 101 cartridge types. New in this edition you’ll find the popular 6mm Creedmoor, 6mm XC, 6.5 PRC, and 7.62×39, along with 20 Nosler, 22 Nosler, 24 Nosler, 27 Nosler and 33 Nosler. This manual is a good resource for PRS shooters and hunters. The Nosler #9 book draws from thousands of hours in the Nosler Ballistic Lab, along with the experience of many respected experts.

The book is available for $24.99 at Midsouth or $29.95 on Amazon. Keep in mind that much of the book’s latest load data is available for free on the online LOAD DATA Center. But to get ALL the data, PLUS all the technical articles, you’ll need to buy the book.

Along with the new Nosler #9 Manual, here are four other recommended Reloading Manuals:

Here Are Four General Instructional Books That Cover Reloading Procedures:


Here is the most recent powder burn rate chart from Hodgdon/IMR that we could find. Click links below to access printable PDF. Note, some readers have suggested a couple powder ranking issues in the table. However, this is the latest official version from the IMR website, released in November 2019.

CLICK HERE to Download Chart as PDF File »

Hodgdon IMR Winchester Burn Rate Powder speed table relative table chart

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