Guncrafter Industries’ American is a stout 1911 with utilitarian defensive/tactical features.
When I first handled Guncrafter Industries’ 50GI Model 1 a couple of years ago, I immedistely told Alex Zimmerman I wanted to test and evaluate one of these pistols. Initially I was drawn to the gun for its novelty—a .50 caliber in a 1911 platform with outside dimensions exactly that of a standard 1911. What I was to learn about the 50GI is that it was not only a practical defensive or hunting gun with its “+P” .45 caliber recoil and handling qualities, but that it was a fully hand-built custom pistol whose quality was second to none.
I have a strong affinity for high-end 1911 pistols, and like most fans of the platform, in the beginning it was enough for me to simply own and shoot production guns that ran reliably. As with most things, the more deeply you get into them the bigger your appetite becomes for the finer things. In the world of 1911s, this usually equates to first modifying the pistol’s grips, then having gunsmiths tweak those same guns to the point where all that’s kept original are the slide and frame.
Using a gun for a base and replacing all of the MIM and substandard parts with quality custom parts is one approach to building a high-end pistol. The other is to buy complete guns from firms such as Guncrafter Industries. When you buy a 1911 from GI, you get a gun that is hand-fit and built to exacting standards by skilled smiths.
Some time after I tested the .50 GI, I received word from Alex Zimmerman that he was introducing a new model he was calling “The American.” I asked to be one of the first writers to get my mitts on this piece, and Alex made sure of it. The American arrived in a black nylon cordura carrying case with multiple magazine pouches, a side pouch, and compartment dividers inside. The American was swaddled in a dark blue terry cloth embroidered with the “GI” muzzle icon and Guncrafter Industries’ logo.
The solid match-grade serrated aluminum trigger is adjustable for overtravel.
An all-business, robust 1911 pistol, the most unique features that jump out at you when first taking the gun up into the hands are the subdued black finish, accessory rail, 15 lines-per-inch (lpi) checkering on the frontstrap and mainspring housing, and the “Shredder” grip panels.
Guncrafter Industries’ American is a stout 1911 with utilitarian defensive/tactical features. When I first handled…
by Jeremy Clough / Sep 1, 2010