I ran across this pistol recently. It was the first time I have had a chance to actually fondle a “turn-in” M45. As you can see, it has seen quite a bit of use. The seller has been able to determine which unit this handgun served with and has documentation that it is not, “a school house gun”. His words not mine. So take that for whatever it’s worth. I haven’t confirmed.
It’s very, very cool.
The wear is cool.
The first 1/3 inch of the barrel lands are functionally shot out.
The ambi-safety seems very sturdy but beefy.
The plunger tube was tight.
The plunger tube was 2 stake.
The recoil spring guide is standard GI.
The recoil springs are two instead of the standard one.
The recoil springs are not model type limited.
Site’s are sucky Novak style instead of ledge.
If you are someone who wants to have “just one” 1911, this certainly would be it. They are worn enough that any subsequent wear wouldn’t hurt the value in the slightest. But here’s the rub.
Am I going to exchange my semi-custom 1911 in place of this? From a function standpoint? No. That would not be a good trade.
Investment wise? What will have more value in 10 years? One of my Ed Brown 1911’s or this specific example of M45a1? Honesty the M45a1 will be worth double if not more. And the logic is based in simple economics. Everyday Ed Brown, Wilson, Bear, Burton, et all pump out more and more pistols.
The USMC is just about at the end of their 1911 history. These are being dumped and it seems some more with better finishes will rotate into their armories. And one day, those will hit the surplus market too. And…the newer models might not be as valuable as this pistol.
How can I say that? Honestly…it’s kind of a shitty thing to admit, but it’s true. These decommissioned M45a1 pistols will always be, “war pistols”. And I know many of our young or middle aged service men and women have been engaged in wars non-stop since 2001. 16 years. That seems like forever. But it goes in the blink of an eye.
Take it from me. I’ve been around a long time. This war won’t last forever. They never do. Look what’s happened to WWII weapon prices. And those are available in the millions! The small amount of civilian legal GWOT weapons is destined to drive post-war dollar numbers into the stratosphere.
If you don’t buy it now, you likely never will.
“Shooting Guns & Having Fun”