A Nurse with a Gun

Saturday, January 21, 2006

No More Grip Safety

Novak's, purveyor of fine firearms and custom sights has developed a new idea for the 1911. It's a one piece backstrap that extends from the beavertail to the butt of the 1911. One solid piece. No pivoting grip safety. I was reading about this piece in Custom Combat Handguns #46 last night. Novak's is calling this new item "The Answer".

I am certain that a product developed and produced by Novak's will be absolutely top of the line. Novak's is a recognized top dog among shooters, and is often a dark horse in competition. They don't advertise much. They don't have to. They are that good. Their guns run and run and run.

Still, if this is "The Answer", I have to ask "What is the question?" If a person has a problem disengaging a grip safety, there are many options. The shooter should first examine his grip. The grip safety can be tuned to a lighter release by a knowledgeable 1911 man. It can be replaced with a "speed bump" type safety. There are many solutions to the problem, and no one answer to the question.

I am against pinned grip safeties. Even though Col. Jeff Cooper advocated pinning the grip safety, and a great many crusty old shooters agree with him, I can not agree. As such, I cannot agree with it's elimination by way of a solid backstrap "Answer". When a man has carried a cocked & locked 1911 in a properly constructed holster, and taken every precaution to prevent the thumb safety from disengaging, yet has still found a cocked and unlocked gun in his holster, that grip safety has significance. Novak's might have a cool idea for a race gun but I personally would never have it on a gun I carried day in and day out.

FWIW, I also noticed Novak's Practical Grip Screws on the same webpage. One of the quirks of a custom gun is looks are as important as function to a customer. A tell tale indicator of a properly built custom 1911 has long been indexed grip screws. Hex head grip screws became popular on custom guns because they allowed lazy harried gunsmiths to get away with not indexing slotted grip screws. These new Novak screws have slots across the hex so a regular screwdriver can be used. Now the screws have to be indexed again. What the hell is the point? If you are going to index the things anyway, just install regular slotted screws and throw away the stupid allen wrench! Here we see a dubious solution to a non-existent problem wiped away by a silly solution that recreates the original non-existent problem. Geeze! It's just a damned pistol anyway. Who cares if all your screw slots are oriented North or South-West?


Blogger AlanDP said...

I think the question is, "What can I come up with that will get people to spend money they really don't have to spend?"

12:55 PM  
Anonymous freddyboomboom said...

I'm not understanding the indexing of the grip screws thingy.

Does that mean that when the screws are tightened, that the slots all point the same direction?

If so, wouldn't that just be a cosmetic thing, not a function thing?

On my M1991A1 they point in all different directions, and I don't care as long as they stay tight (which they do).

2:44 PM  
Blogger Xavier said...

Yep Freddy, that's what indexing is. It's just cosmetics.

3:30 PM  
Anonymous mostly cajun said...

No grip safety?

They had a pistol like that: The M1911. The "A1" was added along with the grip safety...


7:28 PM  
Blogger Xavier said...

Ya might want to check your history MC. The M1911 had a grip safety.

8:28 PM  
Anonymous root@localhost.localdomain.com said...

No. No. No. I don't want any part of it. I hope it flops.

10:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like one of the TFL locals disagrees with you:

Personally, I see it as part of the allure of the 1911. I'll keep mine too.

4:47 PM  

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