Remington 1911 R1 Semi – Auto Pistol


.45 Automatic Colt Pistol
Barrel Length
Stock Color
Round Capacity
7 + 1
Gun Weight
38.5 oz.



Remington 1911 R1 Semi-Auto Pistol – The Remington® Model 1911 R1™ Semi-Auto Pistol is a single-action, recoil-operated, semi-automatic handgun based on the John M. Browning designed M1911. The Remington R1 is a blend of modern steel machined to ultra-tight tolerances and an iconic design, proven in combat for over a century. A carbon steel frame and slide, with a match grade, stainless steel barrel and bushing give you strength, reliability, and accuracy. Remington has kept many of the original features of the M1911, including a spur hammer, flat main spring housing, and a standard grip safety and safety lock. The spur hammer with the original grip safety allows the shooter better access to cocking the pistol by reaching up with the thumb. Enhanced features of the R1 include a satin black oxide finish, a flared and lowered ejection port, a crisp, 3-1/2 to 5 lb. aluminum trigger, and checkered walnut grip panels. Both the front and rear sights of the Remington Model 1911 R1 Semi-Auto Pistol are dovetailed, and can be adjusted for windage or replaced with aftermarket 1911 sights. Comes with two 7-round magazines. Made in USA.

Keeps many of the original features of the M1911
Spur hammer with original grip safety
Flared and lowered ejection port
Dovetailed front and rear sights
Comes with two 7-round magazines
Gun Review: Remington Model 1911 R1 .45 ACP


The gist of this Remington 1911 R1review is that it’s well-made, accurate, made in the USA and you can basically get one for a song these days. If you want a basic Government frame 1911, it’s a great choice. My pictures turned out lousy (I know, I know; I’m buying a camera soon) so you’ll just have to deal with it.

In the broad strokes, this is an all-American GI pistol with a blued steel frame, parkerized slide and walnut grips. The barrel and barrel bushing are stainless steel, and the mainspring housing is the straight model from the original M1911.

This is intentional, as Remington made a small production run of M1911 pistols for the military towards the end of WWI, which the R1 is meant to pay tribute to. Remington 1911 R1 Pistol

It’s close to the gun that John Moses Browning bestowed upon us (and the army). By now, we all pretty much know what a basic GI pistol is like, so there’s no point in going over the parts of the gun that everyone’s already familiar with.

Big Green ships the R1 1911 in a big green box with two magazines, a bushing wrench, cable lock and an owner’s manual.

There are a couple of modern touches, however. First is the Series 80 firing system (love it or hate it) for safer carrying. Second is the sights, which is are simultaneously one of the best and worst things about the Remington R1.

The sights are modern white dot sights with a dovetailed front sight in lieu of the standard pinned front blade sight. They’re more visible than standard GI sights, which makes for easier shooting.

Unfortunately, Remington opted to use a proprietary dovetail cut for the rear sight. (The front is a Novak dovetail cut.) Upgrading requires you buy XS sights – the only aftermarket producer who makes sights for the Remington dovetail cut – or having the slide milled to a different dovetail cut. Doing so will void the warranty (during the three-year warranty period) unless it’s done by a Remington-approved shop.

Build quality on the R1 is excellent for an entry level pistol. Barrel-to-bushing and bushing-to-slide fit are tight and slide-to-frame fit is very good as well. After a few years of use it may loosen up, but most will need a bushing wrench for takedown.

Shooting it is classic 1911. It fits the hand incredibly well, almost naturally guiding the hand into a high, tight grip and pointing as if an extension of the hand. With the white dot sights, sight acquisition is easy. Recoil is ample compared to the garden variety 9mm, but very manageable in this 38 oz. gun, even if shooting one-handed. Remington 1911 R1 Pistol

The trigger is your basic Series 80 trigger. There’s a hint of creep, but very short travel, with a firm break at the end and no real stacking to speak of. As good as a custom shop 1911 trigger pull? No. Better than most plastic pistols? You bet.

The moderate bore axis, intuitive aiming and long sight radius make it very accurate, which is part of the appeal of the 1911 platform. It doesn’t take much to start hitting the 10 ring inside 25 yards.

Testing consisted of a mix of Remington UMC 230 grain FMJ hardball, with a few rounds of Speer Gold Dot 230-grain JHP just to see how it it fed. Hollow points fed just fine, since this isn’t the 70’s anymore. However, to honor that decade which transpired before my birth, anyone that feels like making nasty comments on this post must do so by paraphrasing Pink Floyd lyrics, or else my feelings won’t be hurt by them. You better shine on, you crazy diamonds, if you expect me to feel saddened by your incisive broadsides. Remington 1911 R1 Pistol

There was a hiccup, one failure to feed during a 150-round shooting session. The polymer posse is probably already headed to the comment section, but this happened with a factory magazine. I switched to my own 1911 seven round magazines and had no more issues. The difference between them, of course, is that the factory magazines say “Remington” on them and the 1911 magazines I use with my 1911 pistol say “Wilson Combat” on them.

Those of us who have actual experience with the 1911 pistol know full well that most factory magazines should go straight in the trash (or at least the springs and followers should) and be replaced with a few Wilson, Chip McCormick or – if strapped for funds – MecGar magazines, especially if you plan to carry it.

Overall, this is a well-made basic Government 1911 pistol that’s made right here in the US of A.

Fortunately for frugal consumers, Remington is a relative Johnny-Come-Lately to handguns. Since the brand’s reputation has suffered in recent years due to some quality issues a few years back, the Remington name commands less of a premium than it once did. That works in your favor now as their quality has improved and you don’t need to pay anything close to MSRP. Remington 1911 R1 Semi-Auto Pistol

I’ve occasionally found the Model 1911 R1 online for around $450. Not barely used, new.

Ergo, if you want an entry-level 1911 pistol that gives you the basic 1911 experience, is well-made, looks good and shoots accurately…more bang for the buck will be hard to come by.

Specifications:Remington 1911 R1

Caliber: .45 ACP
Capacity: 7+1
Barrel length: 5 inches
Overall Length: 8.5 inches
Overall Height: 5.5 inches
Width: 1.2 inches at the grips
Unloaded weight: 38.5 oz
MSRP: $749 (about $550 street)

Ratings (out of five stars):

Accuracy * * * *
Tight lock-up for a factory gun and bigger sights than the standard GI units make for easy paper-punching.

Reliability * * *
The factory magazines aren’t great, but that’s par for the 1911 course. Part of the price of admission to the 1911 pistol is lousy factory mags and buying some Wilson Combat, McCormick or other aftermarket magazines unless you’re getting a custom shop gun. Remington 1911 R1 Semi-Auto Pistol

Ergonomics * * * *
The reason why this low-capacity, slab-sided lunk of a pistol stays so popular is because it fits so darn well in the hand and points so intuitively. Always has, always will.

Customize This * * * *
One star off because of the sights, though the rear sight cut can be changed if desired. Other than that, literally every single part on this gun can be upgraded or changed. Remington 1911 R1 Pistol

Aesthetics * * * *
There’s something about a blued pistol and walnut grips, and especially a 1911 pistol thusly appointed. While not shockingly gorgeous, the Model 1911 R1 is a classic beauty like Marilyn Monroe, first-generation Corvettes, Gibson Les Paul guitars and plenty of other things I could mention. Few guns of the same price point are as good-looking. Remington 1911 R1 Semi-Auto Pistol

Overall * * * *
Fit and finish are better than almost any other gun that you’ll find for the same price point unless you pay close to MSRP, which – again – is easily avoided. If you can’t be accurate with a 1911 pistol, you’re probably doing something wrong. The only mechanical issue that you’re likely to suffer is due to a known quantity with this pistol system and easily corrected. Build quality is excellent, and it’s made in the USA. It can easily be found for less than $600. As entry level 1911 pistols go…it’s hard to find a better gun relative to the price point.

Remington 1911 R1 Review


When Remington announced last year that it was going to be making a handgun, it definitely got everyone’s attention. Big Green, America’s oldest gun maker, hadn’t produced a handgun in decades, and this was going to be the first new 1911 from the firm in 91 years.

Everyone assumed its 1911 would be traditionally styled, especially considering the 1911’s 100-year anniversary was rapidly approaching, and Remington did not disappoint. The R1 does have classic looks, but if you were one of those people hoping for an identical copy of its classic Remington-UMC, you’re out of luck. Remington 1911 R1 Pistol

A lot of people like the looks of vintage 1911s but don’t necessarily like shooting them. Their original style grip safeties hurt the hand, their minimalist “hump and a bump” sights are hard to see in direct sunlight, they are difficult to reload with any speed, and they can have reliability issues with anything other than FMJ ammo. Aware of these contradictions, Remington decided to put out a pseudo-vintage version of the traditional 1911 in hopes of pleasing everybody. Remington 1911 R1 Semi-Auto Pistol

The American-made R1 has done away with the original sights and replaced them with simple three-dot combat sights set into dovetails front and back. The ejection port is marginally lowered and lightly flared to aid reliability, and it has a stainless steel barrel bushing for a distinctive look.

The mag well is lightly beveled, and the two provided magazines have improved followers reminiscent of the fabulous PSI ACT mags. The R1 has a short trigger compared to the original UMC’s long trigger, a flat mainspring housing as opposed to arched, and there’s no lanyard loop on the butt. However, it does sport traditionally styled double diamond-checkered walnut grips and original Government-style grip and thumb safeties.

The R1 comes with a Series 80-style internal firing pin safety. 1911s without that particular safety (which is the majority of them, including the original Remington UMC) are not unsafe, and the extra parts of a firing pin safety generally result in a grittier trigger pull–and increase manufacturing cost of a basic model–so I asked Remington engineers at a recent industry event what the reason was for that addition. They couldn’t really give me an exact reason, so I’m assuming it was a liability-driven decision.Remington 1911 R1 Pistol

There is a tiny slot at the top rear of the barrel hood that Remington is calling a loaded-chamber indicator. While theoretically it can be used to see if there is a cartridge in the chamber, the slot is so small that I would much rather just crack the slide back and be sure.

At the industry event, Remington provided five R1s to a group of gun writers, and in just over an hour we put 2,000 rounds of full-power ammunition through those guns. The only problems encountered were one feeding jam (mostly likely due to limp-wristing), and one of the guns’ front sights started to work loose in its dovetail. Remington 1911 R1 Semi-Auto Pistol

The R1’s magazine well is slightly beveled, but the flat mainspring housing didn’t extend down quite as far as it should have.

A fellow writer and I shared an R1, and in 45 minutes we put more than 500 rounds through that one pistol. We had runners loading mags for us, and got the gun so hot the front of the trigger guard was nearly too hot to touch, but it did not jam on us. That said, it was not a torture test I’d care to repeat, as the R1’s old-style grip safety bruised the heck out of my hand. Remington 1911 R1 Pistol

Modern manufacturing techniques have enabled the Remington engineers not only to make a relatively tight and surprisingly accurate pistol for an affordable price, but one that even with a Series 80 safety has a decent trigger.

After our torture test and a proper cleaning, the trigger pull on the provided R1 broke right at four pounds. Admittedly, it broke more like a carrot than a glass rod, but it was still a relatively crisp single-stage trigger–something that cannot be said about the triggers on the original Colt Series 80 guns.

The gun Remington sent me for accuracy testing had a mainspring housing that didn’t quite extend down as far as it should have, resulting in the sharp edge of the frame digging a little hole in the heel of my hand. Remington 1911 R1 Semi-Auto Pistol

None of the guns we torture tested had the same problem, so I’m guessing it was simply one mainspring housing cut a hair too short, and that was the only problem I found. If it was my personal gun, two minutes with a file would solve the problem. Remington 1911 R1 Pistol

The pistol digested all sorts of hollow points without a problem (try that with an original GI gun), although the owner’s manual advises against the use of +P ammunition in the gun.

The name “Remington” has a history all its own, and for those of you interested in a classically styled 1911, the R1 should be at the top of your list.


There are no reviews yet.

Be the first to review “Remington 1911 R1 Semi – Auto Pistol”

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Shopping Cart