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January 21, 2011
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Tom Marx Casting a Critical Eye on Weapons Technology and Training
with Tom Marx

SHOT Show: 'E' is for 'enhanced' with the new 1911 from Smith & Wesson

For the sake of disclosure, I must tell you that I used to work with Herb Belin when I was at Smith & Wesson. For the sake of further disclosure, I should tell you that there were times — like you’re bound to have with co-workers everywhere — we used to butt heads. Those things said and set aside, I also must tell you that I never doubted his knowledge of firearms or his keen insights as to what a makes a “good” gun or what makes a good gun “better.” So it was only logical that this man who was the driving force behind Smith’s ultra-lightweight family of concealable small frame revolvers as well their .460 and .500 S&W Magnums that exist on the other end of the spectrum, be chosen to be a part of the advancements introduced this year to their 1911 line.

This week at SHOT Show 2011, Herb walked me through the factory’s brand new SW1911 Enhanced “E” Series of pistols. There are both 5” and 4¼” versions that feature oversize extractors, titanium firing pins, chamfered and recessed muzzles, lowered and flared ejections ports, and a unique scalloped texturing pattern at both ends of the slide.

One of the 5” guns is an all-stainless model that retails for $919. That gun is also available factory-equipped with Crimson Trace Lasergrips for $1,089. Another is an all stainless rail gun with Tritium night sights and an ambidextrous safety that is available in either a natural or darkened finish. It retails for $1,319.

The 4¼” guns have Scandium frames combined with Stainless slides to save weight as well as size and they also come with Tritium night sights and an ambidextrous safety. To better enhance concealability on the 4¼” pistols, these two guns — available in either a two-tone or an all black finish — have unique rounded butts to limit “printing” when carried concealed. They retail for $1,369.

About the author

Tom Marx left the Chicago Police Department in 1988 to become an instructor at the Smith & Wesson Academy. After several years of teaching full time both nationally and internationally, he shifted roles at Smith: first to a series of technical positions and then as Head of their Domestic Law Enforcement Operations. He left S&W to organize a Law Enforcement Division for Michaels of Oregon as well as to help design much of their police-related duty gear. Leaving Uncle Mike’s, Tom became Director of Intellectual Property for BLACKHAWK Products Group; focusing on the patent efforts for all of their divisions. Today, he is a consultant in various firearms, accessory and training matters. Throughout the years, Tom has continued to lecture and instruct both inside and outside the US with such diverse groups as ILEETA, IALEFI, WIFLE, LETC, NDIA, the NRA, and Team One Network. .

Contact Tom Marx.


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