100k+ U.S. Army Surplus 1911’s On Their Way Home! Maybe . . .

The NRA-ILA writes:

On Friday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 2810, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2018. Included in the bill is a provision that would make U.S. Army surplus 1911 .45 ACP pistols available to the American public through the Civilian Marksmanship program (CMP).

In November of 2015, then-President Obama signed the NDAA for Fiscal year 2016 into law with language that authorized the Secretary of Defense to transfer 1911s no longer in service to the CMP for public sale.

That language made the transfers subject to the Secretary’s discretion and capped them at 10,000 per year. Unsurprisingly, no actual transfers were made under the program while Obama remained in the White House.


If you would like to see 1911 sales return to the CMP, please contact your U.S. Senators and Representative and urge them to keep the House language on this matter intact in the final bill they send to the president. You can contact Senators and Representative at 202-225-3121.

This year’s language, however, would effectively make the transfers mandatory and would remove the yearly cap.

Currently, the military has some 100,000 excess 1911s sitting in storage at taxpayer expense.

Transfer of these historically-significant firearms would ease a burden on the government’s heavily indebted balance sheet and help preserve important artifacts from the era when the U.S. military defended Western Civilization from worldwide fascism and aggressive Communist expansion.

The CMP’s sales of 1911s would be treated as other retail sales under the federal Gun Control Act, including the attendant background checks and point of sale record keeping.

The design of the pistols dates back to the late 19th Century, and they come equipped with a seven-round magazine. One would think this would render the sales harmless in the eyes of the “reasonable gun safety regulation” crowd, but we’re not holding our breath.

The NRA thanks House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-TX) and Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL) for their steadfast support of this important provision.

Upon completion of the Senate NDAA, the House and Senate will convene a conference committee to resolve the differences in their bills.

If you would like to see 1911 sales return to the CMP, please contact your U.S. Senators and Representative and urge them to keep the House language on this matter intact in the final bill they send to the president. You can contact Senators and Representative at 202-225-3121.

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Visit: www.nra.org


  1. avatar No one of consequence says:

    Here’s hoping. I’d love to have one to go with the M1 Garand.

    1. avatar Hank says:

      Now, another great question is, should this pass, could we see other stockpiled surplus arms make their way out of the wood work?

      1. avatar Tiger says:

        Stockpiles? Most nations have cleaned out most the old stuff. That is why you mostly only see Mosin Nagants for sale.

        1. avatar Swarf says:

          Except for the 86,000 Garands in the Philippines that are itching to come home.

          That is likely what Hank is referring to.

        2. avatar neiowa says:

          And a butt load sitting in Korea which the Kenyan eunuch blocked from returning.


  2. avatar jwtaylor says:

    TTAG writer/reader field trip to pick out 1911s and Garands? Any takers?

    1. avatar Geoff PR says:

      “TTAG writer/reader field trip to pick out 1911s and Garands?”

      Not in the cards for me personally at this time, awhile back TTAG had an article about someone who knows helping a reader pick out a good M-1, and as I recall, it wasn’t an easy find, rather than a good one, they got one that sucked the least.

      Your concept is good, should make a good article…

    2. avatar Tex300BLK says:

      Um… yes please?

    3. avatar AM says:

      Yes. Wait a minute, you want us to write it?

    4. avatar Tom in OregonM says:

      Oh, hell yeah!
      Just say when!

    5. avatar 16V says:

      I have a friend who is a ridiculous Garand nut. Which arcane Garand would you like, and in what condition? If it exists, I’m pretty sure he has it. For sale at the right price.

      1. avatar jwtaylor says:

        The one that helped killed Nazis and still can.

      2. avatar Matt in SC says:

        Mine was made in November of ’43 and has an O16 bolt. Internals are original, but the stock and barrel were replaced in the early 50’s. The bolt is the only one ever recalled by Springfield. Shoots great.

    6. avatar Johannes Paulsen says:

      I’m in — although I’ll be headed to Camp Perry, Ohio, not Anniston (as I suspect you’ll be….)

      ETA: Unless y’all want to do a Cannonball-Baker homage from Austin to Port Clinton, in which case, I’m in for that, too!

  3. avatar Geoff PR says:

    A blast from the past – An iconic military handgun, mailed to your front door?

    Somebody pinch me, I’m *dreaming*!

    Why, it’s almost pre-1968 all over again! 😉

    “That’s right son, this is the way it used to be, when America was a free country…”

    1. avatar RocketScientist says:

      I’m not 100% sure, but I’m guessing the “mailed to your door” thing won’t happen with these. I know they won;t be exempt from the FFL transfer/bkgd check like the rifles from the CMP are, and I think i remember readin that the CMPs exemption as far as shipping to non-FFLs would be too. Again, not sure, could be totally wrong. But may want to temper your enthusiasm.

      1. avatar rgshel says:

        The 1968 gun laws prohibit civilians from receiving handguns to their homes…but, you could go through your local gun store in your area and pay a fee for the transaction!

    2. avatar Ragnarredbeard says:

      Pistols will not be mailed to your door. They will go thru an FFL like every other pistol. Federal and all that.

  4. avatar Dave says:

    Any idea on what make & era they’d be?

    1. avatar jwtaylor says:

      No, but I am betting they will be in horrible condition, at least from what I’ve heard from every armorer to ever worked on them. I’m betting they rattle like at toolbox.
      And I’ll still do my best to get one for me and each of my children (and that’s a lot of damn guns.)

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        Rattle as in the way crappy AKs are loose?

        But will still go *bang*?

      2. avatar neiowa says:

        Sure. But the WWII loosy/goosie 45s issued circa 1986 (until M9s arrived) were still good enough for expert. Obviously, the .45 will still kill the Nazi/badguy deader than a 9mm. Sign me up.

        1. avatar Scrote McGee says:

          Not obvious at all. Modern HP 9 creates at least as big a hole as ball 45 and knockdown power doesn’t exist. At least in pistols.

  5. avatar Hank says:

    Man I sure hope so.

  6. avatar Tim says:

    “…would ease a burden on the government’s heavily indebted balance sheet…”

    Sure. Just sell them for $200,000,000 each, and *voila*, the national debt is gone!

    1. avatar neiowa says:

      I think all the $ CMP collects they get to keep in order to run their operations. Not $ back into the Fed blackhole.

  7. avatar Chazzer says:

    Ha !!! Believe it when I see it !! Until then- just wishful thinking !!! Ch

  8. avatar Tex300BLK says:

    And the Korean Garands? This is a good start.

    1. avatar Ho Lee Shyt says:

      The CMP still has some Garands at least – and I’ve snagged a couple.

      What I really want is a CMP M-1 Carbine!

      1. avatar The Gray Poseur says:

        Got a Carbine last year via the CMP lottery. One of my prized possessions.

      2. avatar Tom in OregonM says:

        I’ve got a Garand and a carbine. Got em way back when. I think the Garand cost me 500 and the carbine was 350. Both are in great shape.
        Would love to add a 1911 to the twins.

  9. avatar TruthTellers says:

    How much would these likely cost? What condition will they be in? What are the estimated dates these 1911’s were manufactured?

    I’m more interested in owning actual military 1911’s than I am in any currently produced 1911.

    1. avatar tiger says:

      Keep in mind we are talking pre 1950 base model guns. No frills, tiny sights, parkerized, service guns. It would be nice if they were rare Singer’s or something. But you can buy a new budget 1911, cheaper than any CMP deal.

  10. avatar pieslapper says:

    The twisted panties bunch will call them high powered, soul stealing, military weapons.

  11. avatar Cole says:

    Maybe this is wanting too much but how about they include wording to force the army to give the Beretta’s to the CMP once they transition to the Sig p320. I probably wouldn’t buy one unless they were super cheap but no point in having them sit in a warehouse for another 40 some years. I would like one of those 1911’s though.

    1. avatar SurfGW says:

      Won’t happen. M9 are not curios/classics and don’t hold up to high round counts and abuse like 1911s. Lastly, there is no money to buy SIGs in SIGnificant numbers, maybe a few for people with small hands. Army has a lot of modernization programs and handguns fall below even first aid kits.

  12. avatar jwm says:

    The 1911 just doesn’t do it for me. Even the soul stealing part. After the first few stealing souls loses its attraction.

    1. avatar 16V says:

      Agreed. Bottom-of-the-bottom-of-the-barrel slopfests. 1911s and their inherent issues got boring for me in the 1980s….

  13. avatar JDC says:

    These things are shot to shit. They have been reassembled, mixing parts many times. If you want one because of its historical/sentimental value, go for it. If you think you’re getting a good pistol, hang it up.

    1. avatar Charlie says:

      Agree, but I don’t want a .45 ACP, I want a .38 Super! And it would be a good starting point.


  14. avatar Charlie says:

    I copy/pasted the link to this page on FB, but it comes up Ammoland, so I didn’t post it. WTF?


  15. avatar Michael says:

    Forget the CMP. …not all of us have access to it!

    1. avatar M1Lou says:

      Dude, just join the Garand Collectors Association for $25 and you are in the buyers club. Eligibility is not hard to obtain.


      1. avatar Ian says:

        I’m thinking of doing the same, there are no readily available CMP organizations in my area, it seems like a no brainer to just go the GCA route! Would love to add a vintage 1911 to my Garand and 1903a3.

  16. avatar Kenneth G Maiden says:

    Being behind the Freedom and Liberty line, in commie kaliforna. It would be a waste of time contacting my SH*TY senators. Both rabid anti 2A.
    Sorry America.

    1. avatar Slab Rankle says:

      Contact someone else’s senator.

      You don’t have to tell the truth when they’re stealing your rights.

      Fight to win, man!

  17. avatar W says:

    Gunsmiths everywhere eagerly await the introduction of old M1911s to the civilian market.

  18. avatar Pete says:

    Oh man, I want to get one and put gold & silver plated pewter grim-reaper grips and a bushing-comp on it 😀

  19. avatar M1Lou says:

    My credit card is ready.

  20. avatar former water walker says:

    Sounds like a plan!

  21. avatar Nanashi says:

    Good to see the NRA actually push for something publicly. Already talked to District Director about it earlier this year.

    Hopefully we get this passed and then get the NFA repealed so we can get rid of any M3s laying around the same way

    1. avatar Nanashi says:

      District director of my congressman I mean. Will call Rubio (and Nelson for what little that’s worth) tomorrow

    2. avatar jsallison says:

      If you think the 1911’s are likely in crummy shape, they’ll be pristine next to any surviving grease guns. Having said that if I could get my hands on X-3910 or X-3959 I’d be all over that. Carried -10 whilst in the cav, -59 was it’s stablemate.

      1. avatar Nanashi says:

        Even Google can’t find what these are.

      2. avatar Cloudbuster says:

        The M3 is such a dead simple design, you could probably fix anything wrong with it with a file, pliers, a ball peen hammer, and some basic replacement parts.

        1. avatar jwm says:

          I’m willing to bet you can build a whole new gun from scratch in your garage, like a sten, and not have to be a master gunsmith or machinist.

          Between the 2 I prefer the m3. And you can make a 9mm version of the m3. Ammo is cheaper.

  22. avatar Hank says:

    I’m hoping this influx will occur and will help my prediction of a “1911 bubble”, to burst, and send 1911 prices tumbling, like we saw with ARs. Obviously the 1911 was relatively unaffected by the failed gun control push, however, everybody and their mother is churning out 1911s now, and at some point we have to reach peak 1911. Perhaps this sudden influx will tip the scales?

    1. avatar 16V says:

      Friend of a friend picked up a S/S Colt Commander for $500 at a gun show a week ago. Peak 1911 is long over….

  23. avatar 16V says:

    Agreed. Bottom of the bottom of the barrel slopfests. I got tired of 1911s in the early ’80s.

    1. avatar ThomasR says:

      Oh now 16V. The appreciation of the 1911 is caused by it’s G-d inspired design brought to us by Moses. John Moses Browning, to be exact.

      To those of us that are acolytes of this instrument of freedom and if used properly, of Justice; no justification is needed, and to the un-initiated, no explanation would be enough.

      (I couldn’t resist the religious connotations, you being you, but it does have some of that in the never ending Love Fest for the 1911)

  24. avatar MiniMe says:

    Already been to the CMP’s south store once to pick up some Garands about 5+ years ago and it wasn’t that far of a drive. Wouldn’t mind doing another road trip there if they ever release these 1911’s and they’re sold at a good price.

  25. avatar Malcolm says:

    Lions and Tigers and Military grade Assault Pistols (Oh My ! ) and of course Bearz….

  26. avatar Roger Johnson says:

    The money realized from the sale of these 1911’s would fund the Federal government for about 4 seconds.

  27. avatar Geoff says:

    I qualify for CMP EXCEPT for one item. No membership because there is no place to join nearby that doesn’t charge an arm and a leg for membership.
    I think just having a FFL03 (which I have) should suffice to be able to buy from CMP.
    Right now I’m getting the cash together for a H&R M1 Garand, NOT from CMP, for sale. Asking price is $700.

    1. avatar Geoff says:

      FYI. The closest gun club near me is one County over.
      1. Annual Dues – $225.00
      2. Capital Improvement assessments – Total $360 – $100 due annually upon membership and then $60.
      That is $585 to join just to be able to buy from CMP.
      Armslist is a better place to find a Garand.

      1. avatar Ragnarredbeard says:

        You don’t need to be a member of a local club. There are many ways to eligibility. Look over the page at the CMP. Pretty sure you can get in. http://thecmp.org/cmp_sales/rifle_sales/eligibility-requirements/

    2. avatar RocketScientist says:

      Garand Collectors Association is (if i recall) about $25 bucks to join. They automatically send your membership info to the CMP for you (as well as a little card for your wallet), and membership comes with a pretty decent monthly magazine with highlights on historical garands, restorations, competitions, etc etc etc. Takes like 2 minutes to apply/join online.

  28. avatar Anonymous says:

    I can hear all the 1911 manufacturers screaming….


    1. avatar Cloudbuster says:

      They’re not worried. If you want a good, reliable 1911, you’re better off going with something like a Ruger SR1911 than some worn-out CMP piece. The Ruger will probably cost you less, too.

  29. avatar James69 says:

    Yeah, they will release these when they release the M3’s and Thompsons. They would sell all the M16’s but we gave all those away to our “Muslim friends around the world”.

    1. avatar neiowa says:

      No, you’re confused. We took freshly printed greenbacks and bought nice little POS AKs by the buttload from former Warsaw Pact countries and handed THOSE out.

  30. avatar LAH053 says:

    I truely hope that these .45’s make it home where they belong. I would love to get one and keep it safe along with my M-1 Garand. I’de like to find one that I carried on duty as an MP.

  31. avatar Cloudbuster says:

    Most CMP firearms I’ve seen have been way overpriced, and the rack and field grade are of dubious quality. Those 1911s are bound to be a bunch of worn-out ramshackle, sloppy junkers. I don’t know how they’ll be able to provide any of service grade or better, as pretty much every 1911 the armed forces had was bounced around in service for decades.

  32. avatar tiger says:

    Better question is what about the new stuff? What is going to happen to the M9’s, M11’s, Marine M45’s & Seal H&k’s? Do we see them in 70 years?

  33. avatar 2ASoCal says:

    I wonder if it would be possible for Californians to buy them since they won’t be on the roster. C&R maybe?

  34. avatar Russ H says:

    When I joined the Army in 1978, every one of the 1911’s I saw were junk. I carried one as an M60 gunner. They would go bang but they were beat to hell, much of the finish was gone, they rattled badly and keeping a group inside of 2 feet at 25 yds was very good. When I was on our local post shooting team we went through nearly every unit’s armory looking for the best shooting, least beat up 1911’s we could find – they were all bad. There might be a small cache of unfired ones in some corner of the warehouse (unlikely) but those will carry premium price tags. One of these might be fun to have but not much more than a novelty. Good luck to those pursuing this though – it’s a good idea.

  35. avatar Nick says:

    Late 19th century?

  36. avatar Doug says:

    No one has addressed repairability. Are replacement barrels, etc. available? Is there an opportunity here for someone to make an overhaul kit for the most frequently needed items? Or is this crazy?

    1. avatar Ragnarredbeard says:

      CMP will get whatever parts are in storage as well. Some of those parts are brand new in the wrapper. Last year CMP had .45 mags; I bought a few and they were new in the wrapper made in 1991, which struck me as a little weird given that Berettas were replacing .45s starting in 1985.

      1. avatar SIDLISH says:

        Up until the early 2000’s the US Army was still giving 1911’s out under certain circumstances. My brother tells of being given one while transporting NBC samples. They went in plain clothes and old slab-sides was easier to conceal, by his statement. He said it was ironic because they were handing a pistol model to soldiers who had never qualified with them.

    2. avatar Robert McMahan says:

      Wilson Combat renovates the 1911. I sent in mine, from 1914, and got back a marvelous shooter. It was not cheap, but I now carry it daily. They manufacture their own parts, I believe.

      The company now also manufactures the Brigade version of the M9.

      1. avatar Doug says:

        This is the reply I was hoping for! Thank you.

  37. avatar 5WarVeteran says:

    It would be nice to repatriate those weapons. I only hope they do not try to sell them at “antique” prices.

    1. avatar Ragnarredbeard says:

      They will sell them at market prices (or close to it). What is the market price? Go to a gun show and look at the prices for GI 1911s. Subtract $100-200 and you get an idea of what the CMP will want.

  38. avatar SIDLISH says:

    Read it and always remember. A copy of a copy is never as good as the original


Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

button to share on facebook
button to tweet
button to share via email