The unflagging popularity of full-size 1911 pistols and their clones keep the market ripe with all kinds of parts and add-ons. One of the most popular aftermarket parts to swap out are the grips. Changing the grips on a 1911 is a quick and inexpensive way to personalize it, while adding an ergonomic advantage.
With an endless list of options to choose from, how were the full-size grips chosen and tested for this list? First, the grips had to be practical and useable. Next, they needed to be reasonably priced for their material type or function. Finally, just to spice things up a bit, we looked for options that were unusual or unique in appearance. It wasn’t hard to find products that meet all three criteria. So whether you are looking for a hard-working grip for a good price or something with a whole lot of personality, there’s something here for you. To wit, these are our choices for the best 1911 grips on the market right now.
- VZ Grips are constructed from a variety of tough materials, but their grips built with G10 laminate in a variety of colors and texture options are by far their most popular. The slim-line Operator II in Predator Green (Left) has an aggressive level of texturing for operators who do not want their hands to slip. The magazine release thumb notch, which is an added charge on other styles of grips, is a standard feature on these grips.
Other styles, such as the Zebra-colored pattern (Center) also provide a very aggressive texture using circular patterns to roughen the surface, and give the grip a wild appearance. The Aztec is a popular option with tournament shooters who are looking to hold on tight and stand out from the crowd.
The Elite Tactical Carry—shown here in Black Cherry (right)—is one of VZ's best options for holstered concealed carry. The grip provides texture where the palm and finger pads of the shooting hand contact the grip, but all other surfaces have been smoothed out to reduce snag points.