A certain deviant may not like me uploading this because he may be working on something similar. But it's ok because I'm not very happy with this design. The concept here is to take the 1911 and make a completely modern gun using modern methods of manufacture. Handguns have clearly shifted to polymer framed, striker-fired, double stack designs but the 1911 remains a favorite. There is this notion that modern machining techniques don't necessarily gel with the 1911 because it was designed at a time where guns where fitted by hand by skilled craftsmen. Additionally, the materials involved generate a large portion of the cost for all steel guns. Therefore inexpensive 1911s are often considered lesser quality when they have to cut certain features to meet price points, or less reliable because lowered attention to detail during the manufacturing process. Meanwhile guns like the Glock and M&P enjoy massive success, features, and reliability while typically costing less than $600. 1911s on the other hand have to have modern features added to even compare to those found stock on modern guns.
My notion is, why can't they just make a 1911-like gun with modern processes? The trigger is probably the most complex feature to mimic, probably because the trigger bar runs the width of the grip while modern striker fire guns mostly have their trigger groups contained ahead of the mag well. I'm actually 50/50 on this feature because the 1911 trigger hasn't allowed me to shoot any better than I do with striker-fired guns, even in double action. It's simply a matter of training. I'm not saying a bad trigger doesn't affect shooter performance because it does. That leaves the look and feel of the 1911. I like the placement of the controls and people who extend the slide release are people who don't understand how the 1911 is meant to be run.
So the gun I ended up drawing includes some features of custom 1911s and some non-standard but considered standard today features in a gun made the way modern pistols are. The slide dimensions are pretty similar to a 1911, the controls are similarly placed and designed and the grip is virtually identical but with a much higher back strap/beaver tail. In order for the grip panels to add zero width to the grip, but still have them, they would probably just snap in and out. The idea here is that the grip width cannot exceed approximately 1.25 inches which is around the width of some of the slimmest double stack pistols out there. I know shifting from .45 might be blasphemy for some purists but this gun is no longer a 1911 and 9mm is plenty sufficient when you understand that all realistic defense handgun ammunition has equally poor performance.
Overall I think it's a good looking gun and everything, but I don't really think it's what I was shooting for. I think it goes too far away from the looks of the 1911. Also, I know that there are polymer framed 1911s and several variations from the original design. They are not complete enough. The concept is to make a gun that looks and feels like a 1911, has the quality and reliability of the M&P, and costs no more than $600.