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For the Love of Competition

Building the 1911: Making the Nation’s Favorite Handgun

by Iain Harrison   |  September 20th, 2012 4

After all the hoopla last year concerning the 1911, you might have thought someone would have made a pilgrimage to the source to see how the gun was actually made after 100 years. No one has ever accused me of being punctual, so here’s a little behind-the-times, behind-the-scenes tour of the Colt plant and what it takes to make a 45.

Colt is going through some big changes at the moment due to a massive investment in new machinery. Some machine tools have been in almost continuous operation at the plant since they were driven by overhead belts, and many are being replaced by state-of-the-art CNC machining centers, which is good for us consumers, as it usually means increased productivity, shorter lead times, more product choices and better quality. Despite all the changes, JMB himself would feel right at home on the shop floor and maybe just a little proud that his iconic design is still going strong.

  • Lance

    So where is the foundry–rumor has it South Korea!

  • Alan

    Any Idea where a guy might purchase a 1-17 Cav Regiment 1911 as pictured in the article?

  • David Martinez

    Enjoyed tour of Colt plant very interesting

  • Vegas Cowboy

    I build the 1911 for Ruger very well put together firearm not a bad guy to carry as well

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