The 1911 is the dictionary definition of “been there shot that.” Especially now, during the centennial celebrations marking its debut. You could equip an Army unit with all the variants clamoring for a modern gun buyer’s attention, none of which is particularly noteworthy in terms of its mechanical innovation. But familiarity with John Moses Browning’s design does not breed contempt. And some gunmakers have viewed the 1911’s resurgence as a challenge: to improve on a classic without losing its fundamental strengths. To wit: Smith & Wesson’s new “E-Series” 1911’s . . .
In my experience shooting and reviewing guns, it’s become increasingly difficult to be impartial to certain manufacturers and models. For me, one company clearly stands out as my favorite – and that is the American-based Smith & Wesson Co.
When Smith & Wesson’s Herb Belin showed me pictures of the new E-Series SW1911 pistols with a big, bold letter E centered on their figured wooden grip panels, my initial question was, “What’s the ‘E’ stand for?”