View Full Version : Good book for the 1911?

April 24, 2002, 07:07 PM
Well, it looks like I am going to enter the treacherous world of the 1911 ... if the chamber is only a half inch in diameter, how can you possibly hide so much money in there?!?!? Anyway, after I get it, I'm sure that I will need a good reference book as the 1911 seems a lot more complicated than my other semi-autos and there are a LOT more parts that you can find to "improve" on it!

Any recommendations on a good shop manual?

If it helps to know my preferences, I liked Kuhnhausen's Mauser book.


April 24, 2002, 09:22 PM
Then you will likely like Kuhnhausen's 1911 books.


April 24, 2002, 10:23 PM
OK ... I admit that I didn't even think of looking to see if Kuhnhausen wrote one! But now that I did look, I see that he has two ... and only "Volume I" has a description on Brownell's site.

Does anyone have any suggestions on which of the two Kuhnhausen manuals:

.45 Auto Manual, Volume I
M1911 Pistols Manual, Volume II

is the most informative ... or if they are both good, a description of the second would be helpful.


James K
April 24, 2002, 11:00 PM
Hi, Saands,

Volume I has a lot of information and a fair amount of detail, but Volume II is extremely detailed, providing drawings and dimensions on about every part of the gun. Both are more for gunsmiths and persons working on the gun than for the general user. With Volume II, and a machine shop, you could make a gun
from scratch.

If you want to go with Kuhnhausen and money is limited, I would go for Volume I first, then get Volume II later as your interest increases enough to appreciate it.

Actually, you can shoot the 1911 type pistol and learn a lot without ever getting to the depth Kuhnhausen will take you. There are some general manuals and pamphlets that you might find more useful at this point.

I think you need to think about what your interest is. Is it in learning to shoot the pistol, taking care of it, collecting original U.S. service pistols, working on the pistols for yourself or professionally, etc. The answers will help you determine what books to buy. There are also web sites that will provide a lot of info free, and pamphlets from the NRA and others at minimal cost that will help. Copies of the military manuals are available at gun shows at reasonable cost.



April 25, 2002, 10:05 AM
With Volume II, and a machine shop, you could make a gun from scratch

Jim ... why are you tempting me with things like that!

I will order the first volume first ... thanks for the input.


April 25, 2002, 10:10 AM
You may also want to check out "The custom government model pistol" by Simpson. It has info about the modifications that are done to all parts of the pistol.

Alex Johnson
April 25, 2002, 12:37 PM
It's been awhile since I've looked at it, but I think Nonte's (spelling?) book on pistolsmithing had a pretty good section on the 1911's. There was another book by the same name that had a very good section on 1911 reworking, I'll see if I can find it and give you the name and author.

Jim V
April 25, 2002, 08:20 PM
Patrick Sweeny has a book on the 1911 published by Digest Books Inc. (The GUN DIGEST people) that is supposed to be pretty good. Bill Wilson - www.wilsoncombat.com - has a good book too.

Jerry Kahnhausen's books can be found at www.gunbooks.com (his publisher) and they also have this nifty wall chart showing the action of the 1911 in cutaway.

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