1. #1
    ghost55's Avatar
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    .45 Super: does it suck?

    So I'm carrying a full size 1911 in the form of a Springfield Range Officer Operator with a Surefire X-300u mounted on the rail. I know that may seem like a strange choice in the current day and age, but of all the guns I have shot, this is the one that I shoot best with. That being said, I am aware that it has it's shortcomings compared to more modern designs, and I am working on some tweaks to at least somewhat compensate for them. The first thing I'm doing is getting a Wilson Combat Bulletproof Magwell. I had a bunch of Buds giftcards lying around from being able to look things up on the CA DOJ handgun roster so it cost me literally nothing. That should help me reload a bit faster to make up for the relatively low capacity magazines (I'm trying to track down a 10rd model that will reliably feed hollow points, and at this stage I'm not sure the ones from CMC or Wilson Combat can do that so I may have to settle for 8). The next big upgrade is getting the slide milled for a Shield Reflex Mini Sight. Handgun optics seem to be the wave of the future as they tend to be much faster than just using irons and allow you to take shots more easily at long range. Also it's much easier to shoot with both eyes open (I fucking love being able to do that with the Aimpoint Comp M2 on my AR). The final thing that needs some improvement is the ammo itself.

    While .45 ACP is a fine round for what it was originally designed to do (shoot unarmored targets at relatively short range), the heavy, slow moving bullet does have issues with accuracy past 25yds out of a 5in barrel (with a decent red dot it's not hard to take shots at 50yds), and barrier penetration is also a problem (depending on what contracts I end up working I may need to be able to shoot through a windshield). This is why I'm interested in going through the steps to make my gun safe to fire .45 Super. It already had a barrel with a fully supported chamber, so all I would need to be able to shoot .45 Super would be a 20lb recoil spring, a shock buffer, and a few other small parts that don't cost very much. My first two choices for ammo would be the the Underwood 120 Grain Xtreme Defender or 185 Grain XTP, with the Buffalo Bore 185 Grain JHP also being an option (I don't know what bullet it uses and I'm not sure I trust it to expand properly). My concerns are thus: first of all I'm worried about the increase in recoil. I love the feel of normal .45 ACP. It's barely there and followup shots are easy. Would switching to .45 Super cause a significant enough increase in recoil that it would be impractical for defensive use? And then there is my second concern: the added pressure beating my gun to death. It's a nice gun. I like it. I don't want to kill.

    So that's it. There is plenty of **** floating around about this on other forums, but I thought it was worth asking here. Feel free to call me an idiot for even considering this, but at least for the 30mins of thought I've put into it so far is seems okay-ish.

  2. #2
    Cassius's Avatar
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    I understand the optic and higher capacity magazines, but I'm not sure what your goal is to move from .45acp to .45 super. .45acp with modern ammunition already has adequate terminal ballistics for a handgun round. We had a whole thread recently which discussed the poor lethality of handgun cartridges in general. I shared a link discussing the FBIs move back to 9mm, which is justified by improved performance of modern ammunition and the fact that the realistic capability for fast and accurate follow up shots better indicates lethality than relatively high power.
    "No. Listen to me because I know what I'm talking about here." -- Hannibal

  3. #3
    ghost55's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cassius View Post
    I understand the optic and higher capacity magazines, but I'm not sure what your goal is to move from .45acp to .45 super. .45acp with modern ammunition already has adequate terminal ballistics for a handgun round. We had a whole thread recently which discussed the poor lethality of handgun cartridges in general. I shared a link discussing the FBIs move back to 9mm, which is justified by improved performance of modern ammunition and the fact that the realistic capability for fast and accurate follow up shots better indicates lethality than relatively high power.
    My main interests are improved accuracy beyond 25yds and better barrier penetration. That being said, if the normal Underwood Xtreme Defender .45acp +p still goes through car windshields and the like fine then I guess I'm good. Still probably going to want to install a recoil buffer like the one Rowland makes if I'm shooting +p though just to keep the thing from beating itself up.

  4. #4
    Cassius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost55 View Post
    My main interests are improved accuracy beyond 25yds and better barrier penetration. That being said, if the normal Underwood Xtreme Defender .45acp +p still goes through car windshields and the like fine then I guess I'm good. Still probably going to want to install a recoil buffer like the one Rowland makes if I'm shooting +p though just to keep the thing from beating itself up.
    I guess I don't know the circumstances of your employment, but do your RoEs as a security guard allow you to engage a target beyond 25 yards?
    "No. Listen to me because I know what I'm talking about here." -- Hannibal

  5. #5
    ghost55's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cassius View Post
    I guess I don't know the circumstances of your employment, but do your RoEs as a security guard allow you to engage a target beyond 25 yards?
    Not necessarily, I just like having the ability to do so if everything else about the gun supports it. That being said, the .45 acp +p version of the round still hits 1420fps, and that should really be enough.

  6. #6
    Cassius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost55 View Post
    Not necessarily, I just like having the ability to do so if everything else about the gun supports it. That being said, the .45 acp +p version of the round still hits 1420fps, and that should really be enough.
    It sounds to me like what you want is to squeeze an AR15 (or at least a PCC) and a sidearm into one pistol sized gun. I will remind you one final time that adequate terminal ballistics + fast, accurate followup shots = best you can hope for from a defensive sidearm.
    "No. Listen to me because I know what I'm talking about here." -- Hannibal

  7. #7
    ghost55's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cassius View Post
    It sounds to me like what you want is to squeeze an AR15 (or at least a PCC) and a sidearm into one pistol sized gun. I will remind you one final time that adequate terminal ballistics + fast, accurate followup shots = best you can hope for from a defensive sidearm.
    You're not wrong. I'm going to tinker with the Rowland Tougher Buffer for a bit and see if I can hit follow-up shots using +p ammo as well as I can with normal stuff.

  8. #8
    Kovacs's Avatar
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    Can you carry your AR for this job as well or just your pistol?
    Ne Obliviscaris

  9. #9
    ghost55's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kovacs View Post
    Can you carry your AR for this job as well or just your pistol?
    As of now just the pistol. AR may come down the line though.

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