In this blog, I’m going to go through the top 5 best 1911 pistols. When I think of the best 1911 pistol, I instantly think of Springfield and how they created the design that we all know and love.
With more gun companies creating the famous model every year, 1911 has evolved into more than just a law enforcement pistol or military sidearm.
We will highlight the Springfield 1911 EMP CCW, Springfield 1911 Operator, Sig Sauer Emperor Scorpion, Ruger SR1911, and the Kimber Custom 1911. These 5 pistols sell so fast that you most likely won’t be able to find these on the shelf for long, so if you see one, grab it!
Springfield 1911 EMP CCW
The Springfield 1911 Enhanced Micro Pistol (EMP) is built to be the answer for anyone who thinks a full-size 1911 is too big and the compact size of the 911 is too small. The EMP is incredibly light (1.9 lbs) and features a shortened length to 7.5" overall. This is the only pistol on the list that is chambered for a 9mm bullet. This is also the only pistol on the list that can be easily carried as a CCW.
The barrel is made from a Bull Match-Grade stainless steel barrel for enhanced accuracy, regardless of the shorter barrel. One of the other features that stands out immediately is the reduced grip radius to accommodate smaller hands and give the shooter more control.
The EMP has an ambidextrous thumb safety lever and comes with 3 9-round magazines. The 4" barrel model also comes with a very unique grip, called the Posi-Lock that is designed to establish an unbreakable grip.
31oz/ 1.94 lbs
3-dot iron w/ fiber optic front and white dot rear
The Springfield 1911 Operator is so popular because of the features it offers, such as the widened blended mag well for rapid reloads. The G10 synthetic grip is designed to provide an unbreakable grip on the pistol in any environmental condition you’ll face in the real world (snow, rain, humidity, dirt).
Chambered for a .45 Auto with a 5" stainless steel Match-Grade barrel, this pistol provides the stopping power and durability needed to ensure you’ll kill what you hit. It’s built with the awesome no-snag tactical sights that include 3 tritium vials for shooting in low-light situations.
This Springfield features an integral Picatinny Rail system to accommodate lights and lasers to further enhance the capabilities of the gun. I love this gun because of the features, but more importantly, the lightweight hammer. Some may not like a light trigger pull on such a powerful pistol, but it will improve your accuracy with the 5 lb pull.
The Sig Sauer Emperor Scorpion is chambered for .45 Auto and is coated in the popular Flat Dark Earth (FDE) finish on its alloy frame and stainless steel slide. It’s built with a Picatinny Accessory Rail for adding lights or lasers to improve the versatility of the pistol. One new feature is the Hogue G-10 Piranha mag well grips that were designed to improve the control during rapid firing.
It’s built with a thumb safety on the left side of the pistol for right-handed shooters, but can be manipulated by us lefties without any issue. Sig also incorporated forward serrations for easier manipulation of the slide.
The Ruger SR1911 pistol can be either chambered in the .45 Auto or 9mm, depending on your purpose and comfort level. The frame and slide are CNC-machined for absolute precision in the slide to frame fit. This process is expensive and time-consuming, but the slide on this 1911 is smoother than most other slides and increases the longevity of the pistol by causing less wear.
The trigger is especially impressive with its crisp, light pull weight, positive reset, and no creep. I really like the grip and manual safety combination because it helps prevent accidental discharges, especially with a lighter trigger pull. To add to the great features of this gun is the oversized ejection port for better feeding and extraction for a more reliable shooting experience.
Kimber America is one of my favorite gun companies that typically only the most avid gun owners know about. Kimber is normally a very expensive gun, regardless of the model, but it’s for good reason. The Kimber Custom 1911 TLE is specifically designed for police officers and federal agents who need to rely on the pistol to save lives.
The TLE is built with an incredibly light 4 lb trigger pull to ensure a clean and crisp pull to improve accuracy. I believe the Kimber TLE II has the best trigger of any 1911 on this list and improves my accuracy round after round. It’s a little heavy, but the width is perfect for any hand size and provides an awesome long line of sight with the 8.7" overall length.
There are dozens of holster companies that offer great 1911 holsters for a .45 ACP, but none with the amount of detail and practicality that Safariland offers. The Model 6355 ALS Tactical holster is specifically designed for a 1911 .45 ACP with a 5" barrel and the ability to accommodate a rail system.
The Automatic Locking System (ALS) feature of this 1911 Safariland holster provides outstanding security by ensuring the ALS locks instantaneously upon the pistol being holstered.
Whether you’re tired in the AM or it’s been a long day on the range or in the woods, it can be difficult to keep your focus on the fundamentals. I like the ALS mechanism so much because even if I don’t push my pistol in the holster as hard as I should, it will lock and prevent my pistol from slipping out.
Once your weapon is holstered and locked in, you can easily draw your 1911 with a straight-up draw, once the release is deactivated. This helps prevent anyone from grabbing or pistol at an angle in front or behind you.
You can buy this holster with a single or double leg strap, based on your preference and purpose for carrying it. However, I know that I always go double-strap for added security, stability, and support. The silicone backing on the leg straps is a great touch because it prevents the straps from moving as you walk.
For example, how many gun owners have the straps ride up into their crotch or drop down to their knees as they run and maneuver around in a tactical environment? Safariland made sure that their holsters wouldn’t ride up or fall down to ensure maximum comfort and practicality.
We The People Holsters – Springfield 1911 5" Holster
We The People Holsters has been one of those companies that stands out with their excellent customer service, unique printing on their holsters, affordable price, and durability of Kydex material.
I’m a big fan of them mainly because I love to support American companies that manufacture everything in America. They cater to the LEO and military communities and most holsters are specifically designed with government standards for using 1911 as a CCW. The American flag with the blue stripe across the holster is beautiful and still feels classy and not over the top.
A couple of things to keep in mind for this holster is it’s made to be an OWB holster and will fit a Picatinny rail system on the gun, but not an optic. When you’re searching for a holster be sure to check which holster fits your gun setup. We The People Holsters has dozens of options for attachments and stock setups.
Adjustable Retention with the ability to set your tension to a setting that you prefer with the turn of the Allen wrench on the front screw. Retention is always one of those topics that I try not to weigh in on too much because it’s so subjective. My level of retention is different than my brother’s preference and most of the guys at RE have their own retention settings. Either way, this holster allows you to adjust and make it exactly how you want it.
The belt clip fits a 1.5" belt, so be sure that you’re not wearing a 2" tactical belt for your carry pistols. My favorite part about the belt clip is that it’s sturdy and always stays securely on my belt, even after dozens of draws.
You can adjust the cant and ride of the holster to offer more concealment and better ergonomics for your personal style. I prefer to draw straight up because that’s the way I’ve trained since I was in basic training. However, I know many people prefer to have a cant either forward or backward to fit their body type and draw preference.
I think the most underestimated feature of the holster is the sweat guard. I don’t know how many people have eczema, but wearing a holster for a long time and sweating causes flare-ups that can be incredibly uncomfortable and even dangerous. The sweat guard prevents the holster from rubbing on your skin to prevent eczema or any other skin irritation.
The Springfield EMP is one of the most popular 1911 model pistols because it’s chambered in a 9mm (less expensive), has a much lower felt-recoil, and is the only one on the list that is concealable for everyone.
The Springfield Loaded Operator pistol is another great buy because the match-grade trigger is exceptional and offers the shooter more control for a heavier gun. It’s also lighter than any other .45 Auto on the list and comes with an ambidextrous safety lever and Picatinny rail for laser and light attachments.
The Sig Sauer Emperor Scorpion has the best grip of any of the 1911’s on the list and the FDE finish really makes this gun beautiful. The Ruger SR1911 offers the smoothest operation of any other 1911 and a phenomenal trigger pull.
Finally, the Kimber TLE is a police officer’s dream gun with enough stopping power for any assailant, regardless of what drug they’re on or their size. The trigger on the TLE is the best trigger of any 1911 and really shows out with the improved accuracy and control.
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