Evaluating Guncrafter Industries’ Model No. 4 50 GI
Story and photographs by Oleg Volk
Handguns are almost always inferior to riﬂes in terms of accuracy and stopping power. Since defensive ﬁghting usually happens up close, those qualities are important, but casual carrying of long guns is not socially acceptable in much of the world. The solution is to use the most powerful handgun that’s still practical for unsupported ﬁring. Guncrafter Industries Model No. 4 Hunting pistol attempts to create exactly that kind of weapon by combining 6 inches of barrel with a .50-caliber bore, the largest legally possible without National Firearms Act paperwork. That way, the projectile already has an impressive frontal area, 23 percent wider than .45 ACP, and 15 percent higher velocity for the same 230-grain bullet weight. For hog hunting use, slower but much denser 300-grain bullets are available. While less energetic than a hot 10mm auto load, the 50 GI is more efficient by not having to use as much of the kinetic energy to expand the projectile.
Guncrafter Industries Model No. 4 50 GI packs a powerful punch, whether you’re carrying for self-defense or hunting hogs.
The 50 GI accomplishes all that with the pressure of only 15,000 pounds per square inch. With the 6-inch barrel, especially, it gives much-reduced muzzle blast compared to other powerful defensive chamberings intended to supplant .45 ACP. While the case has a rebated rim like .50 AE, it’s straight rather than tapered. Seven cartridges ﬁt a regular 1911 magazine.
Gun reviewer Oleg Volk reports that the plain rear sight combined with a tritium front sight works well in moderate light, and it’s easy for the eye to pick up the chartreuse vial.
Recoil was the same as with a standard .45 ACP Government model, and the pistol showed impressive practical accuracy. Fired at the rate of about a shot per second, Model 4 gave one inch dispersion at 10 yards with all four loads. The sights as supplied were regulated for 230-grain HP and 300-grain JFP ammunition, with 185-grain HP hitting slightly lower and a 275-grainer an inch higher. At 25 yards, the groups predictably scaled to 2.5 inches, which is quite good for a ﬁghting pistol with iron sights. The combination of plain rear sights and tritium front worked well in moderate light, with the eye focusing on the vial with ease. With the long slide providing a nice forward balance, the sights returned on target readily. Overall weight is only a couple of ounces more than a regular M1911. The pistol is available in a wide variety of ﬁnishes and with various sight options.
Unlike the texturing on some high-powered handguns’ grips, the 50 GI comes with enough to hold onto it while it kicks, but isn’t so rough that it’ll chew up your hands at the range. The reviewer reports that while it shoots like any 1911 out there, the difference is in how much impact it delivers downrange.
Magazines required a good smack to seat on a closed slide when full, and dropped free when empty. The textured slide release worked well, so that I didn’t even bother with dropping the slide with the weak hand. The degree of texturing was sufficient for retention, not enough to abrade the hands. Unlike .357 Coonan, the Model 4 in 50 GI didn’t require conscious wrestling back out of recoil. It shot like any other 1911, with the sole difference of delivering a greater impact downrange. The report was not noticeably different. The muzzle ﬂash was not visible in daylight.
DEAD FOOT ARMS
So for the cost of dropping the full capacity from 8+1 to 7+1, it is possible to get a well behaved but more powerful weapon with the familiar form factor. The only down side I found has been the price: the pistol lists for a bit over $4,100, magazines are $50 each, and the ammunition runs $30 to $50 per 20-round box. I plan on talking to a couple of manufacturers to see if cheaper target ammunition may be developed for practice. AmSJ
The Colt Model 1911 has a really long lifespan.
I can remember when I first qualified on the 1911 while in the military. This may sound cheesy, but it was a huge accomplishment for myself with no pistol shooting experience at the time.
What I also love was seeing those old WWII training footage back in the day. Take a look.
This educational video demonstrates older (1944) techniques on how to properly use a 1911.
Posted by History TV on Thursday, January 25, 2018
If you notice this footage is very similar to the FBI pistol training and utilizing Col. Rex Applegate combat shooting methods for close quarter combat.
Maybe I’m just old school but I like the tradition that these bad boys 1911 have gone through.
Hats off to History TV Facebook for posting these time capsule footage of such an iconic weapon.
1911 pistols are some of the best handguns for competitive shooting and personal defense. Some gun folks don’t like to disassemble it, which is a small hiccup. A feature that we don’t hear much about is its incredible reliability due to other manufactures in the market blowing their horn louder.
Do you think your pistol can fire in -65°F?
Youtuber Brass Fetcher froze his Sig 45 1911 pistol for two hours prior to shooting it for the video. Here’s what it looks like in slow-motion.
As you watch the 1911 chamber a second bullet after the discharge, did you notice the frost coming off the hammer?
Very impressive!, tis the reason why 1911 are considered very reliable handgun to have.
Aeroknox has released a new 1911 slide which they call AX // 01. The slide is not available to the public yet, its on Aeroknox website with a “coming soon” status and you can pre-order.
Even though the 1911 pistol is over a century old and design hasn’t changed much. The slide however, is off the hook and very modern and futuristic looking.
With the new slide design it looks like a blaster from a science fiction movie.
The new Aeroknox slide is machined from a 4340 steel. It is compatible with government size 1911s (5″ barreled and chambered in .45 ACP). The slide also features dovetail cuts for Novak sights. It has rather large rear serrations and similar front ones.
There are also smaller and finer serrations on the sides of the slide. According to Aeroknox, the cutouts on the slide are there to help cool the barrel. Personally, I am not a huge fan of dirt and debris windows to the moving parts, but that’s a matter of personal preference.
The gun in the picture is also equipped with Aeroknox Stealth Grip Mod2 aluminum grips. I think the slide and these grips make a really nice looking combination.
Here’s what they’re saying about this:
Sources: Daily News, AeroKnox, Hrachya H, Firearm Blog
There have been many people talking about the good stuff about owning a 1911. In this segment we want to narrow down certain attributes among all brands that manufactures 1911’s that correlates as to why 1911’s are good to have, its more than saying 1911’s are cool and that they are for EDC, personal protection, etc.
Here’s what it narrows down to why 1911’s are good:
Takes your marksmanship to the next level.
Single action trigger – short reset, lighter trigger= Speed Shooting
That’s right with a good piece of machine in your hands, you can get your marksmanship better. With a single action trigger that is on a short reset – this is a lighter trigger pull. Being a steel gun, a little heavier means really good on recoil control. Last we all just love to customize our favorite 1911. What about you all, what do you like about your 1911? and tell us in the comments below.
Travis: Hi I’m Travis Tomasie, national world champion and professional shooter for PARA USA. Well really to become a good shooter, you need to not only work on the fundamentals such as your grip and your stance and your trigger control, but you need to spend a lot of time dry-firing. Dry-firing is a lot like homework, where actually going to the range and spending real ammo is the test. Or going to a match, that’s the test. You need to dry-fire your techniques. And I don’t just mean by dropping the hammer on an empty chamber, I mean working on your draws, your reloads, your movement, dry fire is key.
Ryan: Today we’re here with Travis Tomasie, world champion shooter for PARA, and today Travis we want to talk about why 1911s do not suck.
Travis: Awesome. I love that topic.
Ryan: Alright, so there are all these guys out there, guys and gals, who have bought lots of polymer guns, and that’s cool, I shoot ’em and love ’em too, but I think now it’s time, if you have three or four of those guns, they’re kind of similar, it’s time to think about maybe a 1911. We’re going to talk about, why would someone want a 1911?
Travis: Yeah absolutely, uh, first of all, and we know a polymer gun is a great way to get started in any kind of shooting that you might want to do, but the 1911 really takes it, takes your marksmanship and your shooting to the next level. You know, this design has been around for 102 years, and it’s proven. It still wins in competitions, it still dominates the entire globe, so-
Ryan: And it still gets used in the military!
Travis: Exactly! it still is, that’s right, so– which proves its superiority in those types of conditions.
Ryan: So when we talk about the 1911, for those who are maybe new to it or whatever, this is a 1911. Some people call it a 45-auto, but the 1911’s the general style that John Browning designed back 102 years ago. So, a 1911, what you’re gonna notice is, most of ’em are gonna be steel guns, right?
Ryan: So they’re gonna be a little heavier, but some of the nice, nice features are, probably the first thing that comes to mind is the trigger.
Travis: Absolutely. Single-action trigger.
Ryan: So it’s gonna bea very short takeup and a very short re-set.
Travis: That’s right. Very short takeup, very short, firm, quick re-set. Allows you to actually speed up your shooting, and also it’s a lighter trigger pull, and it really is one of the reasons why it’s really tough to beat that design. The trigger is phenomenal.
Ryan: Right, which lets you be more accurate, lets you shoot faster.
Travis: Bingo, exactly. [chuckling]
Ryan: Now, the other thing we were talking about, is how customizable the 1911 is. Now you have your competition rig, here, talk about what you’ve done to make this gun shoot for you.
Travis: Yeah, well this is actually a PARA’s new pro-custom 1640. It’s a 40-calibur double-stack, and it’s tricked-out, ready to race, but it brings a good point that the 1911 is extremely customizable. You can do things to these that you can’t do to a polymer gun. Number one is the length of the trigger. You can put shorter trigger pads, longer trigger pads in there, it’s very important for your accuracy that your finger falls on the right place on the trigger. So if your trigger is too long for you and you can’t get it to that right place, then the 1911 allows you to use either a shorter or a longer trigger. Some other things that are very nice, on the grip you have a mainspring housing that this whole part comes out. And you can put in an arch, you can put in a flat, it can be checkered, it can be flat, so it can– it’s customizable to your grip.
Ryan: So you can customize the trigger, the grip, the safety, obviously the sights and other things… what I’d like to do, since this is your race gun, have you shoot it on target, maybe shoot it to empty, do a mag change, and shoot it again, and just kinda show people what this kinda gun can do in a race function like this.
Travis: OK, that’d be great.
Ryan: Alright, let’s do it.
Ok, so why don’t you go ahead and load up, and we’ll do six shots and reload and six shots, and kinda show people what a 1911 can do.
Alright! Six shots and reload and six shots, three-point-seven-one seconds.
Travis: It coulda been faster, Ryan!
Ryan: You guys always say that. But it shows what a 1911 can do, it’s- that gun is obviously customized for you, it’s your competition gun, but that’s the whole point, the 1911’s customizable, and then a greattrigger helps you shoot like that.
Travis: Absolutely. It’s really proof-positive that trigger with a light, smooth aspect, and also with that great reset, it’s tough to beat.
Ryan: So, if you’re looking for something different, you’ve bought several pistols, think about a 1911 as your next gun, I think you’re gonna like it.
How about one that’s actually two pistols welded together? Hickok45 does some close range shooting with this double barrel 1911 pistol.
Hickok45 got another chance to make double holes with each shot using a double-barreled 1911 pistol.
The pistol is actually two pistols in one welded together. Named the 2011 Dueller Prismatic this double barrel beast fires two .45 ACP cartridges with each pull of the trigger. Two large holes appear side by side in targets with each single pull of the trigger. Now, that is pretty slick. Remember, a single full metal jacket .45 ACP slug weighs, on average 230, grains. Imagine the power of two simultaneous hits from this hard hitter.
Hickok45 Here, giving you a little close-up of the Dueller Prismatic. Pretty cool, huh? You’ve seen it in action, and we thought maybe another look up-close with some long-range targets might be fun! [chuckling] And you know what I mean when I say ‘Loong range targets’, don’t you, when we’re doing a close-up video. Just in case you didn’t get enough gun-porn.
Now we have all sorta ‘a targets here! We wanted you to see the hits, okay? One more time, like right n- [SHOT] There! So you see what happens when you shoot this thing at about, whatever, three-four-five yards. Now if you hit a bottle of water… [POW] [chuckling] That’s what happens! But if I shoot that metal… [POW] that’s what you get. Let’s put a couple right above that. [POW] and a couple more [POW] [Chuckling and more shots] Artwork! You’ll notice they’re pretty consistent, but not totally. A little different pattern there. Now that’s the double-mag that comes with it. Pretty cool. Appreciate being able to get this at Bud’s. By now it’s probably back, and one of you probably has it! Actually, maybe one of you got it on eGunner. And you might be shooting it today! You might have shot this firearm the same day I’m shooting it. Wait a minute, that ain’t- Oh I forgot. That’s kinda one of the weird idiosyncrasies of it, like a regular 1911 you just pull back the slide and it’ll go forward, but on this one when it’s locked back, in the first time there you have to hit the lock lever, slide lock. Pretty neat! Now let’s kill this bottle. I don’t wanna get wet, it’s too cold today to get wet. [POW] Argh. [Chuckling] It’s still new so sometimes I gotta punch the slide to get it on in there. [POW] Need to get a better grip, probably, too. [more shots] That is one of the most interesting things about it, honestly, is just seein’ the holes that end up in whatever you’re shooting at. I think I have two more magazines, so let’s just shoot a couple more. I want to see some more holes. So you could use individual mags of course, it’s just that you do need two of them [blows it off] Dirt in my pocket. Alright. Oop, ok, gotta remember to release that. Alright. Might just work on these three and leave that guy for another day. Alright, let’s just shoot a little bit. One, two- [rapid shots] [laughter] Shot the stick down! Oh boy.
Dueller Prismatic. Pretty interesting piece of hardware. No doubt about it. You notice it is rather thick, right? So it is a little bit like holding a 2×4, but definitely an interesting firearm, no doubt about it. And I’m pleased to be able to try it out. Life is good.
There has been a lot of buzz on the internet lately about the reliability of a 1911 platform as a self defense pistol.
For a quick torture test DRF (DownRange Firearms) Training took a Sig Sauer 1911 and my personal Glock 19, buried them in the dirt, actions open, cleared the dirt and debris from the guns and proceeded to fire the guns testing their reliability.
The Glock performed flawlessly, the 1911, as expected, failed miserably. Glocks shot off all 15 rounds where the Sig only came up with 2 shots fired. We had fun with this one and hope you guys enjoy it!
DRFTraining used factory fresh Remington UMC 230gr .45 and Federal 115gr 9mm, no hand loads.
For anyone who wants to know EXACTLY what happened to the 1911…To clean it we had to strip it down to the empty frame.
Dirt was located in the sear,trigger, grip safety, mag release, hammer and there was a pebble jammed under the leaf spring.
Matt: What’s up guys, it’s Matt with Downrange Firearms Training, we’ve got my friend Nick today. Nick was kind enough to let us borrow his Sig 1911, I wanted to run a torture test real quick on the 1911 platform Vs the Glock platform. There’s a lot of buzz on the Internet, especially after James Yeager’s videos from Tactical Response, basically saying that the Glock pistol is the only pistol you should own. I totally agree with James, I love the philosophy on the video, and essentially if anybody knows me, they know the fact that I slam the 1911 all the time because it’s actually– while it is a great shooting target-pistol, that’s its limitations, the fact that it is a target pistol and should not be used as a defensive carry pistol, because of the fact that the gun, essentially, is built to such tight tolerances that it can’t stand up to the abuse that something like a Glock or a Smith and Wesson M&P or a Springfield XD would.
So I want to do a real quick torture test, show you guys– I’ve got my fourth-generation glock19, the gun that I carry all the time, and Nick was nice enough to volunteer his Sig Target 1911. We do have factory-fresh ammunition, just so you guys know, we’re not using reloads or anything like that. What we’re gonna do, we’re gonna load up the rounds , load up the guns to the capacity that they have; the 1911 is limited obviously to eight rounds, then we’re gonna toss ’em in the dirt, get ’em pretty dirty, and then just see how they run from there. So Nick, if you don’t mind loading up the 1911 there, buddy, I’m gonna load up the Glock.
We’ve got a nice warm day here in massachusets, we’ve got some dried-up mud that we’re gonna toss the guns in, it’s kind of a silt-y material right now because it’s been raining the past couple days, but the sun’s out today, dried everything up. Toss ’em in the dirt, cover ’em up, take ’em out, bang ’em off, and see how they work, and we’re gonna do it with the actions open.
So here’s my gun, fifteen rounds, pop that in there so you guys can see. You all set with that one?
Matt: Alright. Just gonna take ’em, toss ’em in the dirt, both of ’em. You wanna do the honors since it’s your gun? Get the glock covered good, so nobody can say that we gamed it. Alright. Pretty dirty, not something a lot of people would do to their guns, but for the sake of the argument today, we’re gonna do it. Wanna zoom in real quick and get inside ‘n see? There’s a ton of dirt and everything in there, so we are gonna clear that out first, make sure that there’s no obstructions in the barrel. How’s that one lookin’?
Nick: Pretty fuckin’ dirty.
Matt: Nice work. Good? Alright. I’ll put my ear protection on real quick.
Alright, let’s stop it right there real quick. Now as you guys can see– did you even get a round off?
Matt: Nick got two rounds off, to my fifteen. Again, we didn’t game it, anything like that. We took the gun, fresh from the way we carry ’em, toss ’em in the dirt, load ’em up. The hammer wouldn’t even go back on his, another reason why you shouldn’t use firearms with safeties and with hammers on ’em. A double-acton striker-fired pistol, this one looks a lot dirtier right now than the 1911 even does, and performed flawlessly. That right there, again, is why I relate back to James Yeagar’s video, he essentially said that all guns should be Glocks, all Glocks should be 9mm, and all 9mm glocks should be 19s. Big enough to shoot with, small enough to fight with, and in my opinion it’s one of the best platforms out there, and that right there just proves the reliability of the gun.
Hey guys, thanks for checking out the video, hope you enjoyed it, we had fun makin’ it, for more informative videos, check us out on the web www.DRFtraining.com, visit us on the facebook page, subscribe to the youtube page, and go over and check out James Yeager’s video on the Glock19, it’s pretty good, I think you guys would enjoy that one as well.
Nick: Remember guys, only hits count. Unless you’re carrying a 1911. Alright Matt, go clean my gun.