John Browning’s .45 ACP 1911 has come to symbolize our no-nonsense approach and dogged determination to prevent any rolling back of our hard earned personal rights. A .45 ACP 1911 handgun practically screams United States of America. The SIG SAUER special edition “WE THE PEOPLE” 1911 aesthetically exudes rugged American pride in our Constitution.
For many, there is no debate over choosing a personal defense handgun. Any discussions of preferred weapons starts and stops with John Browning’s 1911. The SIG SAUER “WE THE PEOPLE” 1911 combines the time proven .45 ACP cartridge with a carry platform that benefits from nearly a century of refinement. The association between the .45ACP cartridge and the 1911 platform is seamless. Many may forget Browning is not only creator of what many feel is the ideal handgun in the form of the 1911, but also the designer of the .45 ACP cartridge.
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The most distinguishing feature with “WE THE PEOPLE” (WEP) SIG SAUER 1911 is the “distressed” finish on the steel frame and slide. Twenty-five raised stars on each grip, 13 stars engraved on the top of the slide, as well as “WE THE PEOPLE” and “1776” on the slide complete the motif. SIGLITE night sights and two 7 round steel magazines complete the package. The WEP 1911 is a full-size Government model featuring 5″ barrel. An extended beavertail safety, ambidextrous thumb safeties, skeletonized hammer and trigger, cocking serration rear of the slide, and front and back strap serrations are found on SIG 1911 WEP. SIG has decided to utilize an external extractor. The special edition WEP 1911 uses a plug bushing and spring following Browning’s original design intent. This will warm the hearts of many 1911 purists who deride the use of full-length guide rods as a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist with the 1911.
The distressed finish and other embellishments create a striking, instantly classic, look with the WEP 1911. My first thought was this is a weapon you would see on a movie poster promoting an upcoming blockbuster. The WEP 1911 is no movie prop. It is a fully functioning high end 1911 able to perform its duties as a personal defense weapon as intended by Browning.
The 1911’s single action trigger is a key component in the performance equation. The trigger aids in target engagement with a trigger pull just less than 5 lbs. with a short reset — the SIG SAUER WEP follows in this tradition. The full sized slide and grip frame contributes more mass, aiding in increased muzzle control for double taps or longer strings of fire. The 1911 ergonomics combined with the slide’s track during recoil and manageable muzzle signature allows for a very stable sight picture no matter how many or how rapid rounds are fired. The extended beavertail guides the hand to the optimum grip position during the draw stroke and aids in recoil management. It’s not hard to fathom why purchasers will be torn between enshrining their new “WE THE PEOPLE” SIG 1911 in a presentation case or carrying it daily.
The steel frame translates into the WEP SIG 1911 weighing approximately 41 oz. However, comfortable inside the waistband carry is possible thanks to thin 1911 profile. While a personal defense pistol’s reliability must be beyond reproach, “carry-ability” is just as important considering the hours spent with the weapon holstered.
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The WTP 1911 had no issues performing straight out of the box. Multiple range session tallied nearly 450 rounds fired without issue. SIG SAUER .45ACP ammunition was utilized including 230-grain FMJ, 230- grain V-Crown JHP, and 200-grain V-Crown JHP. Firing was at a relatively steady pace with different shooters running the WTP 1911 thru its paces on plate racks, dueling trees, and other drills. During this, all my shooting buddies made comments that the SIG 1911 performed as good as it looked. The WEP 1911 fired groups into one jagged hole at 7 yards and come close to this performance at 15 yards in the right hands. It was refreshing to experience the subdued recoil of the steel framed SIG 1911 compared to lighter alloy-framed 1911s and polymer handguns I’ve handled lately. The raised star patterned grips offered excellent purchase and keep the hands steady during recoil allowing for fast follow-up shots.
The 1911 platform may be considered “old” and outdated to some, but it continues to attract users with its natural handling, great trigger, and potent 45ACP chambering. The SIG SAUER “WE THE PEOPLE” 1911 has all those great features and takes this pistol to another level with its unique appearance and homage to the US Constitution.
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