A Nurse with a Gun

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Custom Sistema

One of my favorite pistols is a 1911 that I modified myself to meet my own specific requirements for a durable and accurate full sized carry 1911. With a hand fitted Wilson barrel, it is an inherently accurate gun.Modified Sistema Click to enlarge Over time, I swapped out other parts, until I basically had a new gun.

After shooting a 1911 fitted with an Ed Brown grip safety, I decided that any 1911 I fitted a beavertail to would have one of his grip safeties on it. The Ed Brown grip safety requires the gunsmith to remove a significant amount of metal underneath the grip tangs. As a result, the web of the hand seats underneath the beavertail almost a quarter of an inch higher, placing the shooter's forearm closer to the bore axis for faster follow up shots and reduced perceived recoil. A couple of years back Ed Brown quit producing his grip safety without the "speed bump." That was a regrettable decision from my point of view. I prefer his grip safety, but I don't really care for the lump in my palm while shooting.

In a lot of ways, my modified Sistema is nothing fancy. It still has it's original military sights. The ejection port is GI. The grips are used rubber off a Kimber. The front strap has no checkering and there are no 1* inscriptions on the slide. What it is though, is a consistently reliable and accurate gun. You can read more about my modified Colt Sistema here.



Anonymous Jordan said...

I am a BIG fan of simple, purpose built firearms. If the Sistemas were still in a more affordable price range, I would strongly consider modifying one in a similar fashion. Do you think the same goal could be achieved with a Rock Island Armory pistol?

9:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"consistently reliable and accurate gun" just about all that needs to be said. If everyone worried more about those two things, not on the latest greatest laser-polymer wonder,they would be better off.

10:53 AM  
Blogger Xavier said...

It probably could Jordan, although I would advise looking for a well used Colt since you would be replacing the barrel and a lot of other parts.

3:31 PM  
Blogger Mark Horning said...

Any chance you still have the original Sistema thumb safety in a drawer somewhere?

I had to replace mine with a GI safety. It works, but it's no longer original.

Picture here:

10:07 PM  
Blogger Xavier said...

Sorry Mark, I sold the left over parts on ebay to defray the cost of the new ones.

If I had known......

4:43 AM  
Blogger tom said...

Ed Brown speed bumps go away in a few moments of grinder work and a dip of blue. Just saying. Not that I ever would do such things to his parts...

11:35 AM  

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