First Look: Inter Ordnance Venom Pistol


If you haven’t heard of Inter Ordnance, or IO Inc. yet, they manufacture various models of AK-47s, AR-15s, a couple variations of 1911s and are working on more. Many of their AR/AK variations are 100% American-made, with some having a combination of domestic and imported parts. We recently got to head out to their Palm Bay, Florida facility and got a sneak peak at their Venom 1911 pistol . . .

I interpret the handgun as a pet project by owner, Ramzi Kheireddine. They’re still in development as far as I can tell, but once they’re finished it will be interesting to check out how well they work and how reliable they are.

The initial specs are standard 1911: chambered in .45 ACP with a 4″ barrel and with a trigger pull weighing in at around 5.5 lbs. But they’ve added a few more features that make the Venom something more than the garden variety 1911A1.

Our I.O. Inc. Venom .45 ACP 1911 features ambidextrous safety, unique forward slide serrations for visual inspections and tapered magwell for rapid magazine changes. It has a 416 SS forged barrel with chamber indicator. The Venom also comes with a built-in picatinny rail, adjustable lightweight aluminum trigger, standard dovetail cuts and textured side grips. Includes 8 round .45 ACP magazine. Includes foam lined hard carrying case.

In handling the pistol, it was a little “blocky” and rough around the edges. And the trigger wasn’t what I’d call smooth (I’m guessing it has about a 5 lb. pull weight). It didn’t feel quite finished yet, and while we were told the model they showed was a bit of a prototype, it seemed to be an early prototype. Keep in mind, though, that I think this is going to be a price point style gun, not something designed to complete with the likes of Kimber, Springfield or Colt, but more of an entry level 1911. Unfortunately we were not able to shoot the model provided.

Once we can get our hands on a production model, we’ll give it a through going over, so stay tuned for more on the Inter Ordnance Venom.


  1. avatar Panzercat says:

    A 1911 made in America at a reasonable price point will be enough of a draw for those on a budget, as opposed to buying a Phillipines, Brazilian or Turkish brand. Assuming it’s not a POS at the end of the day, of course.

    Pretty timely article. I’ve been looking hard at their AK pistol variant.

    1. avatar Eric says:

      Ruger has an excellent 1911 made in the USA and for sale at a reasonable price.

      You might want to do some research before buying an IO AK.

      1. avatar Panzercat says:

        I did. There’s not much out there. Do you have something to add?

        As to Ruger, you’re absolutely correct. But a single data point makes for a pretty wide open market. And last i checked, you aren’t going to find a NIB Ruger or any other American made 1911 for $569 MSRP.

        1. avatar Eric says:

          See the comments in the previous TTAG post about IO for lots of links.

          And why do you specify $569 MSRP? There’s no mention in the post about MSRP … unless you’re a shill and know something the rest of us don’t.

        2. avatar Matt in FL says:

          Eric, that’s the second time you’ve accused someone of being a shill just today (also the first time I’ve seen that word used in a long time), and the second time you’ve been wrong. Maybe you should rethink throwing it around with such abandon.

        3. avatar Jeff says:

          There’s not much out there? You didn’t try too hard at your googling, man.

        4. avatar Steve In MA (now RI) says:

          The hellpup pistols are good because they’re made as handguns so don’t have to go through 922(r) and are made entirely overseas. That way, IO Inc doesn’t screw up the build stateside. Some other examples. Better prices can be found also.

        5. avatar Abad says:

          I just bought a brand new SR1911 for $650.00. But you can save $81.00 and go with a company like IO. It’s your money. And your life.

        6. avatar Panzercat says:

          “… unless you’re a shill and know something the rest of us don’t.”

          By shill, you must mean using mean reading an article on “The Firearm Blog” detailing the MSRP of this pistol when it debute at SHOT. Clearly shill-ish behavior.

          “I just bought a brand new SR1911 for $650.00. But you can save $81.00 and go with a company like IO. It’s your money. And your life.”

          I thought it was pretty much understood that MSRP does not equal street price. Guess I forgot the [obvious][/obvious] HTML markup.

  2. avatar Cameron B says:

    happy to support a local company provided it’s close to a competitive price.

  3. avatar Taylor TX says:

    5.5 lbs ?? Im not a 1911 guy and this is a serious question, but is that the loaded weight?

    From the springfield website, a full size 1911 RO model weights 40 oz = 2.5lbs

    1. avatar Holepunch says:

      5 lbs is the trigger pull weight. Even loaded the pistol will weight less than that.

      1. avatar MurrDog says:

        “The initial specs are standard 1911: chambered in .45 ACP with a 4″ barrel and weighing in at around 5.5 lbs.”

        I get that its the trigger pull weight but that’s not a clear way to say so in a review.

        1. avatar Taylor TX says:

          I kind of thought that maybe I just misread or misinterpreted it or something, but yea I would concur, the term weighing in sounds like an overall weight.

          I was boggled as to how a company could make a 4″ 1911 over 5 lbs, what the hell it was made out of and what kind of stout ass belt/pants setup do you need to carry that boat anchor 🙂

          Was the article edited to re-word the phrase? Sneaky Deakys

  4. avatar Eric says:

    This shameless promotion of IO, a company with a long history of screwing their customers and their suppliers, is making me question the integrity of TTAG.

    1. avatar Lucas D. says:

      My only experience with IO was a brief, but not brief enough ownership of their .380 Hellcat that came with a crippling FTE problem, which was a pretty huge liability even at the $150 asking price. No matter what rounds I fed into it or what adjustments I tried to make, the little bastard simply would. Not. Extract. Ever. I had to hold the action open and poke empties out the chamber with a pencil. So I dumped it off for $75 at a gun show and put that toward an LCP a friend was selling… also for $150.

    2. Lighten up, Francis. No one is promoting anything.

      Josh got a tour of the IO plant and they showed him some of their guns. He specifically mentions the Venom he saw was a prototype and a rather rough one at that. If and when we get and review a production model, you’ll know what we really think of the gun.

    3. avatar Charles5 says:

      OMG!!!!! Can’t talk about anything in a neutral or favorable light because it might look like we are promoting something!!! Political Correctness to the Rescue!!!!

  5. avatar former water walker says:

    Not really a review. And I would get a Brazilian 1911. They support my gun rights(got 2 free NRA memberships from Taurus). BTW Taylor that’s trigger pull 🙂

  6. avatar DangerousDave says:

    I keep waiting for a review of the Taurus PT1911, which has been designated with “Review in Progress” for the better part of a year. I picked mine up for $500.

    1. avatar former water walker says:

      Hey I asked the same thing. Never got a reply. How is your Taurus 1911 Dave? I’ve had 4 Taurus’ and they all ran great.

      1. avatar DangerousDave says:

        Running just fine. I’ve had 1 FTE during the break-in. Shoots accurately and reliably with steel jacketed TulAmmo. I’m not a huge fan of the sights, I want to swap it with a set of Trijicons. Slapped some rubber Hogue grips on there. I love it. Easily worth the $500, plus a year of NRA membership and lifetime warranty.

        1. avatar Former Water Walker says:

          Good to know. I’ve been told the PT92 is superior to the Beretta{American made). I’m not a collector or competitor so I have no brand snobbery. I just want bang for the buck.

  7. avatar Matt Richardson says:

    Oh look, a press release for another 1911. This one has the added benefit of being branded by a company with a less than stellar reputation.

    Sign me up!

  8. avatar Dave Allison says:

    I’m all about American made goods (especially weapons) and I think the time for the superior-than-Russia American AK is at hand. Having said that, I don’t believe for a second that Inter Ordnance will be at the forefront of that fight. I have heard nothing but bad things about their firearms (AK Operators Union hates them and those guys do some legit stuff) and not to mention that with this 1911 project they are trying to compete against Ruger, Remington and yes, Kimber (the Custom II is pretty cheap, street price.) I foresee this pistol being the Oakland Raiders of 1911’s (Sorry Oakland fans)

    1. avatar Andrew says:

      According to the interview Ian McCollum from Forgotten Weapons did on his new In Range show, the folks at Rifle Dynamics are working on a 100% Made in the USA AK. No receivers, barrels, bolts, or critical parts from outside countries. Given the good work they do on import models, I have full faith that they’ll make one hell of a 100% US AK.

      1. avatar Jeff says:

        …and probably priced near $2k.

  9. avatar tdiinva says:

    I don’t see the market for this pistol. The high end is owned by Colt, Wilson Combat and Kimber. The middle market is owned by Springfield and the economy market is owned by Taurus and RIA. RIA may be the most cost effective off the shelf 1911 around. I am very impressed with the VZ I bought.

    1. avatar 'Liljoe says:

      I wouldn’t compare wilson combat to colt and kimber. You forgot sig (I know people hate them, I love em) for middle market and STI (also an american made brand). I own a bunch of kimber and sig 1911’s have not gotten to the insanity point of buying a wilson yet. Every time I have that money I buy a rifle instead 🙂

  10. avatar Kevin says:

    Looks an awful lot like a Sig Extreme.

  11. avatar ChrisF says:

    External extractor……


    1. avatar Steve says:

      I must agree

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