Is the MARSCOC .45 the Right Gun?

Ravage

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http://kitup.military.com/2011/09/is-the-marscoc-45-the-right-gun.html

springfield-marsoc-pistol.jpg

Our boy Matt Cox has a story this afternoon on Military.com that goes into the Marine Corps’ program to replace its MarSoc .45s with a more modern version.

Marine special operators may have a new pistol by years’ end, but it won’t be the latest in sidearm technology.​
The Corps’ weapons officials are bypassing decades of handgun innovations and sticking with the revered .45 caliber 1911 for its new Close Quarters Battle Pistol.​
The service launched the effort to replace the Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command M45 pistol, another 1911 design, in spring 2010.​
The Marines want to take the manufacturing burden off of the internal gunsmiths who currently custom build the M45 and tap a commercial gun maker to provide a similar pistol.​
But some military pistol experts maintain that the 1911 design, while extremely accurate, requires more training and care than other modern tactical pistols.​
“You’ve got to be more dialed in on keeping it lubed; you’ve got to be more dialed in on trouble-shooting if there is parts or magazine issues,” said Larry Vickers, a well-known tactical pistol instructor and 1911 expert.​
Now we’ve all seen the video where Vickers equates the .45 with the complexity and user involvement of the M-16. The interesting point of discussion for us doesn’t come until a couple of grafs down in the story where officials say they aren’t running a replacement program because they don’t have the money for it.
So let me get this straight: The top tier of special operators in the US military — the ones actually most likely to use them in a fight — are shooting Glocks and Sigs, but the Marine special operators have to keep a pistol design that’s been largely abandoned by Tier 1 units (and those below)? It’s only 4,000 pistols. You’d think the Corps could come up with the money and clout to run a new program (and carve out a new “requirement” rather than being the only major unit within the US military that issues .45s…
 

AWP

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I don't follow....?

1) If you are going to post articles then at least provide some commentary on it, otherwise we become a news aggregate service.
2) I think Pardus is speaking about the author of the article.
3) Love the stock photo just to have anything to throw into the article. Stay classy, Kitup.
 

DA SWO

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Says the former US Army Infantryman...
Too many fucking holes in the story.

"The Corps’ weapons officials are bypassing decades of handgun innovations and sticking with the revered .45 caliber 1911 for its new Close Quarters Battle Pistol."

Really? Maybe if the author mentioned a few of the innovations.

The weapon in the picture has a rail system, correct me if I am wrong, isn't that a fairly recent tactical innovation?

What doesn't the weapon have? Polymer Grips? 10-15 rd mags? What is missing?
 

policemedic

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The 1911 is a fine gun and will serve MARSOC well.

Vickers is right that it requires a bit more TLC than other pistols, but I don't think it will be an issue in MARSOC.

Kudos to them for making a good choice.
 

TLDR20

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Too many fucking holes in the story.

"The Corps’ weapons officials are bypassing decades of handgun innovations and sticking with the revered .45 caliber 1911 for its new Close Quarters Battle Pistol."

Really? Maybe if the author mentioned a few of the innovations.

The weapon in the picture has a rail system, correct me if I am wrong, isn't that a fairly recent tactical innovation?

What doesn't the weapon have? Polymer Grips? 10-15 rd mags? What is missing?

I think what a lot of people forget about handguns, is my pistol doesn't need 15 rds! It needs however many rounds get mr back to my rifle! These "experts" who do 2 or 3 gun comps forget about the realreason for a pistol, to get me back to my rifle. A pistol is a defensive weapon. And it us one that needs to fire when the trigger is pulled. 1911 is good for that!
 

policemedic

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http://kitup.military.com/2011/09/is-the-marscoc-45-the-right-gun.html

So let me get this straight: The top tier of special operators in the US military — the ones actually most likely to use them in a fight — are shooting Glocks and Sigs, but the Marine special operators have to keep a pistol design that’s been largely abandoned by Tier 1 units (and those below)? It’s only 4,000 pistols. You’d think the Corps could come up with the money and clout to run a new program (and carve out a new “requirement” rather than being the only major unit within the US military that issues .45s…​

Actually, it's kind of common knowledge SEAL Team 6 took delivery of a number of HK45C pistols. Glocks and SIGs aren't the only pistols used.
 

policemedic

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I think what a lot of people forget about handguns, is my pistol doesn't need 15 rds! It needs however many rounds get mr back to my rifle! These "experts" who do 2 or 3 gun comps forget about the realreason for a pistol, to get me back to my rifle. A pistol is a defensive weapon. And it us one that needs to fire when the trigger is pulled. 1911 is good for that!

Precisely. It's a secondary weapon for most people; one that is often used when the primary weapons system goes tits up.

When it is chosen as a primary weapon, the shooter needs a pistol that shoots well and that has good ergonomics. Pistols need accuracy, a decent caliber (keeping in mind it's a pistol), and above all a good trigger. That's the 1911 in a nutshell.

The one thing about the 1911 is that it is a professional's pistol. If someone isn't willing to develop their skill with it, and thus reap the benefits of the design, then perhaps they should choose a different handgun. But we're talking about SOF. Training and maintenance won't be an issue in MARSOC.
 

HOLLiS

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Precisely. It's a secondary weapon for most people; one that is often used when the primary weapons system goes tits up.

When it is chosen as a primary weapon, the shooter needs a pistol that shoots well and that has good ergonomics. Pistols need accuracy, a decent caliber (keeping in mind it's a pistol), and above all a good trigger. That's the 1911 in a nutshell.

The one thing about the 1911 is that it is a professional's pistol. If someone isn't willing to develop their skill with it, and thus reap the benefits of the design, then perhaps they should choose a different handgun. But we're talking about SOF. Training and maintenance won't be an issue in MARSOC.

I would add it does have one tiny problem. It is a open ignition system. The original holsters where flap holster. The flap help to protect the pistol from dirt, etc. The new holsters the pistol is exposed. Having a 1911 cocked and locked, means in a situation where one is crawling or rolling around debris can find itself in the receiver between the hammer and firing pin. One reason, from my understanding, why it never made it as a LEO pistol. Colt did make a 1911, the Double Eagle that had SA/DA which is better. A closed ignition system is even better. A lot of pistols are going to that, much like the Glock.

Ergonomics is a personal issue. Some current manufactures include parts to change the grip for people. Like shoes they make a pistol to fit the most amount of people, it may not fit all people.

Also caliber, probably no so much in how the blows the other guys to smithereens, maybe something more like you have 100,000 shooters who are just grunts and pogues no one high speed, what are the scores can they all shoot proficiently? Generally more people will shoot a 9mm better than a .45. This was one of the reason, I heard why most LE Agencies stayed with wheel guns. Also the fact LEO, tend to carry and carry and a open ignition system does require a little more care.

Also if you look around Cops carry pistols, grunts carry rifles, there are different uses for different types of guns. For a grunt, carrying something else means he will carry less of something, more ammo is always preferred. That would be for his battle rifle. Other thing, if a battle been going on for a while there are always extra rifles.

For guys on the teams they know what they want and they should have it. Grunts get what is issued. A knife gives you something to fight with until you can pick up a pistol. A pistol gives you something to fight with until you can pick up a rifle. Anything is better than bare hands, rock, E-tool, and there is a priority on what is preferred.

So a pistol for one group may not be the pistol of choice for another group. Also the uses will vary. Only time I carried a 1911, is when I was in the MPs. As a grunt, No way would I want one. If I was on a team (from what people told me who are on teams) I would carry both a rifle and pistol and be proficient in both and in transitions.

We can argue caliber, the deciding factor is the group that will shoot that caliber and how proficient that group is.

Yes you can kill with a 9mm, but as a grunt I want something that has the impact of a 105. The deader the better.
 

TLDR20

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Personally I don't care! I am not a pistol snob, what I don't like is people who bitch about stuff who don't seem to know WTF they are talking about. Most 11b's dont carry pistols. By most I mean almost none. So really WTF does this a-hole know? Nothing honestly. So yeah gimme whatever gets mr back to my long gun! I will take it, as I am sure these marines will as well.
 

Diamondback 2/2

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I am an 11B and the only pistol I carried in combat was G19 I took off a dead IP (never used it and honestly it was kind of dumb carrying it), so as far as actual use of a pistol in combat, no I don’t have that experience. Honestly, I never had any situation where I would have needed that pistol (M4 never went down). I have used a rifle in combat, and I am pretty well locked the fuck on with a pistol (either it be competition or general range training).

Unless I was running DA type missions on regular bases, I would not want a pistol in combat. Just extra weight to lug around and if my M4 went down in a gunfight I honestly would scoot my ass to cover and fix it before I ever went to a pistol. CQB I would trust my team/squad to take care of business until I got my weapon running, but that would probably be the only time I would want a pistol (in combat). I don’t know what you SOF dudes need them for so I’ll trust that you boys know what pistol you need.

That said, stating that someone who did not carry a pistol in combat is inexperienced in their use is retarded. Very few people have actually used a pistol in combat (both conventional and SOF). Most of the competent pistol shooters I have met did not come from a SOF background and the ones that did were humble and did not claim that X knew better than Z. However, I do agree this author of the article is a dumbass and should learn more about what he is writing about.

As for the 1911 used by the USMC Force Recon community, a personal friend of mine was involved in the development and modifications. He was the head armor at Quantico and is now one for the FBI (HRT). The pistol was modified correctly and developed to meet the mission scope of Force Recon Marines.
 

TLDR20

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JAB what I am saying is there is a difference between being competent in shooting and knowing about pistols in a civ/LE environment, and in a SOF environment. We do things different, we shoot different, and I don't lie this guy thinking he knows better than the actual shooters who chose and employ this pistol. That is my beef. I am sure there are lots of guys who know more about pistol fundamentals, and pistols in general. But they are not as well versed in real CQB as I am. So they can take their knowledge and shove it. This guy is one of those types as far as I am concerned.
 

policemedic

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I would add it does have one tiny problem. It is a open ignition system. The original holsters where flap holster. The flap help to protect the pistol from dirt, etc. The new holsters the pistol is exposed. Having a 1911 cocked and locked, means in a situation where one is crawling or rolling around debris can find itself in the receiver between the hammer and firing pin. One reason, from my understanding, why it never made it as a LEO pistol. Colt did make a 1911, the Double Eagle that had SA/DA which is better. A closed ignition system is even better. A lot of pistols are going to that, much like the Glock.

You bring up a good point regarding the ignition system. All I can say in reply is that between my 1911 and HK45, it's never been a problem and both have been dragged through the muck. The caveat is that said muck didn't dry, it was pretty quickly removed by firing the gun. I use the Safariland 6004 (as I suspect a lot of people do), and I think the hood, while it's not a flap, manages to keep crap from getting under the hammer to a certain degree. Those who use SERPAs may have different results. I do agree unreservedly that what you posit is possible.

As to its use in LE, the 1911 is fairly popular in certain circles. SWAT, for one. For road dogs, many agencies allow the use of personally owned 1911s. My take is that these agencies are somewhat more progressive in their training, and their men are involved in more OISs than other places, but that's just how I see it. LAPD authorized 1911s for patrol folks (they were already in use by special units) after the Bank of America shooting, for example.

My own agency has an anti-1911 bias that I hope to change over time. While we can carry anything we like that is larger than .38 SPL, they are afraid that not every officer would be capable of securing and clearing a 1911 if that officer were to be injured and had to be relieved of their weapon. I think it's a bullshit argument, but there it is. :-| On the other hand, 1911s are authorized for off-duty use (qualification is mandatory). Most importantly, Condition One carry of duty guns is authorized if the pistol is designed for it, as my HK45 and HK45C BUG are.

While my shop doesn't care about single action guns, others do. For example, years ago the Montreal Urban Community Police had their revolvers modified so that the hammer couldn't be cocked (they've since moved on and carry Glocks). My prior agency spec'd out a DAO pistol when we converted from S&W Model 10s (yeah, I'm that old) to semi-auto .40s. There is a (sometimes justified) fear of cops having NDs with cocked handguns.

DAO guns became popular in many departments because they are simple and offered a certain degree of commonality with the revolvers they were replacing. That is one reason (quite a large and compelling one, actually) why the Philadelphia Police Department chose Glock 17s many moons ago. PPD had to train more than 6000 cops, most who weren't shooters, and figured a consistent trigger pull would present them less problems as they transitioned to the new guns.

Ergonomics is a personal issue. Some current manufactures include parts to change the grip for people. Like shoes they make a pistol to fit the most amount of people, it may not fit all people.

True enough. It's why my agency chose the Smith & Wesson M&P to issue to those who wanted it (the vast majority of our officers carry this gun). My HKs are the same way, and Glock has recently seen the light and introduced various sizes of backstraps. Regardless, the narrow grip profile of a 1911 seems to lend itself to shooters with small and large hands alike.

Also caliber, probably no so much in how the blows the other guys to smithereens, maybe something more like you have 100,000 shooters who are just grunts and pogues no one high speed, what are the scores can they all shoot proficiently? Generally more people will shoot a 9mm better than a .45. This was one of the reason, I heard why most LE Agencies stayed with wheel guns. Also the fact LEO, tend to carry and carry and a open ignition system does require a little more care.

I've never heard of concerns about the ignition system driving the procurement decision. It may well have happened, but generally other things are on the minds of LE trainers and the bureaucrats who approve the guns we propose. Cost, DAO operation, safety record, market share, service, trade-in deals, performance criteria, armorer issues all affect which guns we can get the Chief (a distressing number of whom aren't gunfighters and, in fact, are anti-gun) to sign off on.

For guys on the teams they know what they want and they should have it. Grunts get what is issued. A knife gives you something to fight with until you can pick up a pistol. A pistol gives you something to fight with until you can pick up a rifle. Anything is better than bare hands, rock, E-tool, and there is a priority on what is preferred.

Agree completely.

We can argue caliber, the deciding factor is the group that will shoot that caliber and how proficient that group is.

Yes you can kill with a 9mm, but as a grunt I want something that has the impact of a 105. The deader the better.

No need to argue. We're completely simpatico on this. :thumbsup:
 
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