I'm doing a bit of research for a character in a story I am working on. The character is a retired Army colonel. In the story, he has a special edition or custom sidearm that was gifted to him from a friend in the army. The story is set roughly in 2050.
I am using a desert eagle as a stand-in, but was wondering if anyone knew of a specific sidearm that would be functional and valuable at the same time.
Former Army sergeant here. The Desert Eagle's certainly overdone.
A couple suggestions might be the M9 Berreta. 9mm which has been in use for the Gulf Wars and Afghanistan; or if you're looking for something a little older the good old Browning .45 ACP (M1911) that had been in use since 1911 and is still in some use even today.
There was a hand-made M15 version of the Browning .45 ACP that was made especially for Generals. That may be a good thing to have as a gift from a friend who was a General; they're custom-fitted with a brass inlay on the handguard and inscribed with the General's name.
Another variation of the Browning .45 ACP is the Colt Commander, rechambered for 9mm parabellum ammo. It was not Government Issue but could be carried as a personal sidearm. Designed for concealed carry, competition, and the like . Comes in nickel or aluminum as I recall.
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Hmm, I like the sound of the Colt Commander as well as the special browning. Do they pack enough power to penetrate a thin sheet of metal, something equivalent to the metal on the outside of a fridge door?
Also, would dissassembly and cleaning of the General's 45 be the same as with any other M1911 ? The MC in my story will be doing this so I need to research the process.
[This message has been edited by Osiris (edited September 17, 2010).]
[This message has been edited by Osiris (edited September 17, 2010).]
Yeah, you'd have no problem with the fridge door on any of these
I've never handled the General officers' pistol but evidently its internals are just like a standard 1911A1. They are quite popular even today. It should be easy enough to find a local gun shop or show that'll show you the assembly/disassembly and operation and let you handle one.
Both these are practical choices, the .45 and the 9mm parabellum both have very good stopping power.
quote:...the .45 and the 9mm parabellum both have very good stopping power.
I was in Germany in the late '80s, when the military was going from .45 to 9mm ('cause of NATO) and, unfortunately, someone was messing around with someone else's wife. So hubby left for the day, and Don Juan came calling right after. However, hubby was aware something was up so he waited and ambushed Don Juan with his own personal weapon: a 9mm handgun. Shot Don Juan once, and Don Juan, knowing discretion as being the better part of valor, took off running with a bullet in him. Hubby fired more rounds, each hitting Don Juan in the back. Don Juan did eventually die, but he also managed to travel over a block away.
So my buddies and I are reading about this encounter in the Stars and Stripes, and we're talking about it and making jokes ('cause we didn't know anyone involved and were amazed at the stupidity of it all), and Sgt Mac, a Vietnam vet with, literally, the thousand yard stare, said: "If the dumb ************ had used the .45 instead of that piece of **** 9mm, he wouldn't have had to empty the entire clip."
We weren't sure if Mac was joking or not (he rarely joked) so we absorbed this in silence, then nodded our heads that yes, indeedy, when confronting our wives' paramours one should use a .45 instead of a 9mm. Mac's reasoning being that one shot would be more defensible than 9 shots (or however many were actually fired), and chasing the guy through the parking lot.
(And I'm not trying to start an argument, DerekBalsam, just when you said the quote above, it brought back the memory. Honestly, hadn't thought about that for quite some time, but it's weird what triggers memories.)
If its 2050, you could also invent a futuristic gun rather than a classic. Maybe he gets gifted a vintage example of one of the first functional laser guns...
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quote:Hmm. I would have thought that Mac's reasoning was that a .45 would pack a bigger whallop than the 9mm, and therefore be more efficient.
Yeah, I wasn't clear on that.
Mac's comment was meant to be "legally" defensible, as it would've only taken one shot to bring the guy down, thus the hubby could claim some kind of self-defense (as the first shot fired was in the home) as opposed to then chasing him through the parking lot, having to empty the gun into him.
Also, during this time, we actually had an aerobics instructor brought in so we could do aerobics as opposed to just running (I guess--not really sure why we were doing this and it only lasted about a week). Mac stood in the back while the rest of us gamely tried to keep up with the aerobics instructor. One of the Lieutenants, who didn't really know any better, asked Mac why he wasn't following along.
Mac fixed this guy (who was maybe 23) with his stare and said: "What the **** does this **** have to do with hunting someone down in the jungle and killing him?"
And he walked out. (Mac never participated in PE so it was a little shocking to see him there anyway.)
Good times. (And I'm serious as hell about Mac's stare. Never seen anything like it before or since. There was nothing in those eyes. When he smiled, it was kind of shudder-inducing. The funny thing is that I was one of the few people he actually liked.)
no worries, I got the answer I wanted. I'm going with the General's 45. There is some cool history behind that model (something like only 1004 were ever made).
Posts: 1043 | Registered: Jul 2010
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the standard issue pistol for the U.S. military is the Beretta 9mm. However, special forces can opt for the 1911 if they choose. I learned this talking with a Navy Seal instructor. The instructor claimed that the Seals did not want to use the 9mm, because it did not have enough "Stopping" power, when a Seal is in close combat they need a weapon that will disable immediately.
The 9mm is a high velocity round. when it hits a soft target, such as a human torso, it has enough energy to continue cleanly through the other side. In addition to this it has a greater range on point targets.
The .45 on the other hand is a high power, low velocity round. When this round hits a soft target, again a human torso, it will continue through the other side. However, because of the lower velocity it causes more damage on the way through.
In this respect the .45 is an "almost" weapon. you can almost hit a vital organ and still damage it. A 9mm won't necessarily do this. this is part of the reason the F.B.I. used the 10mm for a while. The 10mm has the velocity and range of a 9mm with some of the stopping power of a .45.
[This message has been edited by Strychnine (edited September 18, 2010).]
9mm parabellum, yes, has less stopping power than the .45. This was a well-known complaint of the 9mm, when compared to the .45, the folks above are certainly correct on that point. Bad wording choice on my part.
Now, as you can see from the discussion above, Osiris - this is still a matter of some importance to certain military/police types and pistol enthusiasts! However, distracting from the main point of special editions of weapons - and for that I surely apologize.
Glad I could help
[This message has been edited by DerekBalsam (edited September 19, 2010).]
Maybe you guys can all chime in on something that comes up as I'm writing the M15 into the story.
From what I have researched re: the gun, I've found the following facts: - Only 1004 were ever produced, mostly I believe in the 1970s-1980s.
- The general's name is engraved in the pistol grip.
- The general could purchase it from the army when they retire and almost universally did so.
Here is the problem, the story takes place in 2050. The gun is produced in 1970s. The MC received the pistol from a General, who did not have children, thought of the MC as the closest thing, and willed it to him upon his death.
I wanted to use the General name engraved in the grip as a launchpad for a flashback or reflection into the relationship between the two men. That means the engraving has to be the general's name, which would only work if the original engraving had been replaced by this generals name (The general himself would have been about ten years old at the time).
Alternatively, it can be the original name (the generals father), which reminds the MC of his friend's name.
The last option would be to have a 2050 equivalent of the M15 General Officer's Pistol. Some modern or even invented sidearm that functions as an heirloom piece in the same fashion as the M15.
Which of these 3 options seems the best to you guys? If the last option, any suggestions?
USAR Warrant Officer here, and for my money your best, most likely bet for an heirloom piece, is the Browning M1911 .45 pistol. This is an amazingly durable design that is already 100 years old and is liable to still be in use privately and by military folk by 2050. I find it 100% believable that someone would inherit such a firearm, especially something which had seen use in a war zone, or been customized or tailured (engraving) during its lifetime. In fact, you could get really nostalgic about it and make it an original production run piece from the year 1911 -- the M15 being a "show" piece, whereas an original M1911 could have seen service in WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, passing through many different hands; you could give the weapon itself a very colorful history.
I do like that idea, thank you. I think I will go with it, and build upon it by having each owner of the pistol customize a certain aspect of the pistol. Now to research all the different ways a pistol could be customized
While I have you military types, another question if you don't mind.
Is it realistic for the US Army to conduct an operation in which it takes an island to give a base of operations for the larger theater of war, converts the port for naval use, and builds an airport? Or would this be strictly Marine Corps work?
[This message has been edited by Osiris (edited September 21, 2010).]
Couldn't it have belonged to the General's father/grandfather/great grandfather of the same name? He has no children but he must have had parents.
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You have to understand the mission of each of the services. The navy and air force both have support missions. Their primary mission is to give fire support to any ground troops in the area, or to soften an area that is to be attacked by ground troops. The marine corp's mission is that if initial assault. Take the beach or hill, then move on to the next target. The army's primary mission is that of occupation. Once the beach has been taken the army makes sure we don't lose it.
This does not, by any means, mean that the army doesn't do initial assaults and that the Corp does not do occupation missions. These are just the guidelines that are used for funding and training. So basically you could do either for your story. It is completely within the realm of plausibility that the army would take an island it felt had a strategic advantage.
In addition to what I said above, if the four branches of service adhered only to their primary mission WW II would have gone in a completely different direction. Imagine the red tape that generals would have to go through in order to get marines to an area for an assault, or soldiers in an area once it's been taken. The number one thing all services have to be is flexible.
[This message has been edited by Strychnine (edited September 21, 2010).]
Army and LE veteran here. Not to get too off base here, but there isn't really any such thing as stopping power. What kills you is what is called permanent cavitation. As a bullet enters the body is makes a hole, but here is a shock wave along with it. The shock wave creates temporary cavitation and the bullet makes a permanent cavity. Now a .22 will make a small hole, and because of it's velocity penetrate well. If I shot you with a .44 magnum and it only went in 1 or 2 inches, you would probably live. This is why body armor works. No penetration. See where I'm going? .45 is larger and tends to keep it's energy longer within pistol shooting distances. 9mm is smaller and faster, but it's energy will bleed off quicker. They are also more easily deflected, by bone or what ever. Hollow points are designed to "mushroom" and make the cavity larger, but if it doesn't have enough energy to keep penetrating, then will slow down faster than a non hollow point of the same caliber. So if you can make a large, deep permanent cavity, then you have a better chance of taking the fight out of your adversary. I was always taught to pull the trigger twice. Some call that a "double tap" but legally I would never use that language.
I own the same exact guns the Army has used. The 1911 long slide and the 92FS. Pro's and Cons to both. 1911 has a much greater felt recoil and is harder to bring down quickly for the second shot, without much more training. It is single action and will only hold 7 rounds. Single action means the hammer needs to be manually cocked before it will fire the first time. You need to have the hammer back and your holster strap is in between the hammer and the gun. Safety issue for the Army. 92FS has less felt recoil and is easier to use for smaller folks, like females. Has capacity of 16 and is double action. The first trigger pull will fire it. It has a "safety" or de-cocking lever. The 1911 doesn't.
I carry concealed a .45 compact Taurus. I have carried 9mm.
Now for the historic bit. Go with the .45 1911A1. This is the classic collectors piece.
BTW the Army Special Forces has to carry the 92, they don't have a choice.
[This message has been edited by Bheithir (edited October 11, 2010).]
quote:You have to understand the mission of each of the services. The navy and air force both have support missions. Their primary mission is to give fire support to any ground troops in the area, or to soften an area that is to be attacked by ground troops...
Is there a book out there that explains such fundamental principles of warfare? I fell that you can't really write about the fancy things until you know the basics.
I've actually finished the first draft of the story in which I was researching these questions. I'd love to have some feedback from military types. It's not really a 'military' story, but the main character is a retired army colonel, and he does own an M1911 that is pretty central to the story.