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Breaking down a unique 1911 training pistol


Grab a ticket to the gun show, introducing Cold Steel’s 1911 training pistol.


Available from: WWW.COLDSTEEL-UK.COM


£26.40 (price correct as of 06/08/15)

Firearm control in the UK is among the toughest in the world. There are estimated to be over 170,000 firearm licences and around 620,000 shotgun licenses on issue in Great Britain. In Kent there are estimated to be 28,000 holders of firearm / shotgun certificates possessing over 72,000 guns. With this said, firearm offences make up less than 1% of recorded crime.

Small firearms such as pistols are for the most part illegal in the UK. Some small firearms are allowed such as pest control, sport target shooting and antique muzzle loaders. Other small firearms are allowed but are surrounded by so many restrictions that the general public would not be able to easily access them. So is it worth practising defensive tactics against pistols? Yes! For many reasons…

  1. Although you’re unlikely to face a pistol in mainland England, pistols are legal in many other countries around the world such as the USA where you may be on vacation. You may fall victim as locals will see you as naive to the area and potentially vulnerable;
  2. Acts of terrorism – In August 2015 Ayoub El Kahzzani was suspected of trying to carry out a mass shooting on-board a Thalys train in France. Six men were believed to be involved in subduing the suspect and these included three American men who were on vacation at the time. This point also alludes to the first point about tourists in other countries where attacks may occur. It is worth noting that France like the UK have very strict gun control laws;
  3. Criminals may be able to purchase illegal firearms through contacts they have in the criminal underworld. In August 2015, BBC news reported that the NCA (National Crime Agency) seized 22 automatic assault rifles, 9 pistols, 2 silencers, 58 magazines and 1,000 rounds of ammunition from Cuxton marina. Cuxton is part of the Medway towns, the same towns that our school is based in. So with that in mind, you may be closer to illegal firearms than you think;
  4. Who’s to say you are not an employee at a gun range, the spouse of a gun owner who may have access to these types of weapons. In the past even Police officers have been found guilty of murdering their own families;
  5. You made be faced with a RIF (Realistic Imitation Firearm) and unbeknown to yourself you believe this to be a genuine threat and will use your defensive training in that scenario;
  6. Your defensive concepts may be the same or similar for small and long barrel weapons and so it would make sense to train both and see where the strengths and weaknesses lie;
  7. You may be reading this from a country where gun ownership is legal.

The real 1911.

Designed by John Browning the M1911 is a single-action, semi-automatic pistol chambered for the .45 ACP cartridge, which served as the standard-issue sidearm for the United States Armed Forces from 1911 to 1985. The M1911 was replaced by the 9mm Beretta M9 pistol as the standard U.S. sidearm in the early 1990s. Due to its popularity some units of the U.S. forces continue to use the 1911 today.
Training Version
This Cold Steel 1911 is made from ultra-durable thermoplastic rubber and weighs in at 12oz and is 21.9cm in length. This training version is thinner and lighter than the real 1911 and with its ultra-bright colour you’re unlikely to have Police firearm units storming your training facility. This pistol is very durable and is better than almost all the rubber training pistols we have tried previously. At £26.40 it is also a bargain when compared with other well-known American companies who make replica training firearms. We have used this extensively and replicated 100’s of disarms, dropped it countless times and yet the pistol is still in great condition. The real unique factor about this product is that it comes in two different versions…

  1. Hammer down, and safety off.
  2. Hammer back and safety on, (cocked and locked).

This allows you to train more realistically using the two different conditions. This pistol does not have any moving parts and does not replicate the action of the real 1911. You can buy replica 1911 airsoft pistols which will fire as the real 1911 would but the downside is airsoft pistols are usually expensive and don’t hold up well to being dropped etc…and that’s exactly where this pistol excels, cheap and robust.

A gun of the highest calibre (pun intended). The pistol feels great in the hand, looks fantastic with great details and the price matches the purpose. I hope Cold Steel continue to manufacture more models in the future so we can train with different firearms and investigate new approaches to different models; education is the most powerful weapon.


If an attacker with a gun asks for something such as your wallet, give it to them. When you do, do not throw it to them. Instead throw it far away from you and them. By doing this they have to walk some distance to pick it up which will allow you the chance to escape. If they honestly only want the wallet then they would usually have no problem with this.

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