Colt M1911A1 Tactical: Part 2Another action pistol from Umarex

by B.B. Pelletier

Today, we’ll look at the performance of this pistol. It has a 5″ barrel, so we expect it to be in the 400-425 f.p.s. region with lighter lead pellets. I’m interested in a pellet that shoots as accurately as possible.

Make mine wadcutters
All the Umarex action pistols are .177 caliber only. I use wadcutter pellets exclusively because the low velocity means the pellets will try to tear the target paper and wadcutters don’t do that at the velocity these airguns can generate. If I were shooting action targets , I’d want accuracy but the shape of the nose would be less important. My choices for the Colt M1911A1 Tactical are Gamo Match, JSB Match Diabolo (pistol), RWS Diabolo Basic, RWS Club, Crosman Wadcutters, Crosman Premier Super Match and RWS Hobby pellets. I chose these on the basis of pellet shape and price. An action-pistol shooter is going to shoot a lot, so price has to be a factor…the same as accuracy.

Velocity and number of shots per powerlet
I chronographed the pistol with three different wadcutters to give you a good feel for the gun’s potential. From a fresh powerlet, Crosman Super Match averaged 397 f.p.s., with a spread of 24 f.p.s. and a high of 410. RWS Hobby averaged 416 with a spread of 27 f.p.s. and a high of 430. Gamo Match averaged 408 f.p.s. with a spread of 10 f.p.s. and a high of 414. This pistol gave over 60 good shots per powerlet – a big suprise, because I only saw 45 good shots from the Walther CP88 Tactical!

Accuracy was best with Gamo Match, by a wide margin. With a careful hold, they will give 1″ 5-shot groups or better at 25 feet. I feel they are capable of even a little better, like 3/4″, but I didn’t see it. Crosman Super Match pellets were second, and, being smaller, they loaded easiest of all. All other pellets have to be pressed into the magazine with a tool to get the skirts in all the way. A pellet seater works well for this. And RWS Hobbys gave surprisingly large groups – in the 1.5″ range.

Adjusting the dot sight
The sight adjustments on the Walther MDS sight are backwards. Turn TOWARD the right to move the group left, and so on. This is in line with German target sights in general, and opposite how most of the rest of the world marks sights.

The grip safety on an Umarex Colt pistol has always been a bit “clicky” compared to the firearm. I mean, you can feel a click in your hand when it takes the gun off safety. The test gun’s grip safety was very noticable. The single-action trigger-pull, however, is as crisp as I have come to expect on this model. A couple weeks ago, I commented on the nice trigger on the new Walther CP88 Tactical. That trigger broke at 6 lbs., and I liked it. Well, the trigger on this Colt breaks at 3 lbs., 4 oz. and is just as crisp! I can do some good shooting with a trigger like this!

The Colt M1911A1 is my favorite of all the Umarex pistols. Only the S&W 586 shoots better for me. This tactical version has a great dot sight that really enhances the gun’s performance. If you’ve been wondering which Umarex to get, I’d suggest one of these Colts.

60 thoughts on “Colt M1911A1 Tactical: Part 2Another action pistol from Umarex”

  1. I looked up those Skenco Velocity pellets you mentioned, and in the description it stated that they were not to be used in umarex guns. Is that incorrect? Have you used them sucessfully in Umarex guns? I tried to shoot raptors through my CP88, but they would jam in the magazine, so I am searching for another high velocity pellet for my guns.

  2. j. tye,

    I have used type 2 Skencos and they did work. You have to push them into the magazine and maybe people aren’t doing that. If you don’t they will back out and tie up the gun’s action.

    Raptors are perhaps too hard to use. I only mentioned them because of the velocity thing.

    I have edited the posting to take both pellets out.


  3. Thanks for the reply. About the Raptors, I didn’t have a problem with them backing out of the mag and jamming the action. They would get stuck at the mouth of the magazine, never entering the barrel after the CO2 had been released. I will check out the type 2’s. Thanks again B.B.

  4. B.B.

    if you rmember i was asking about the mendoza. i was able to find their mexican website and it says on the site that it has a one year warranty. i submitted an inquiry about why other models are sold as an rws and hopefull even though i submitted it in english i can get an answer directly from them

    i do have a question about pump pneumatics. i have a 66 powermaster and i was curious about tuning those? since its nothing like a spring rifle i doubt there is a whole lot to do with them. do you know of any sites or anything about upgrading/modding pump pneumatics? on a side note the 66 isn’t rifled anymore. i didn’t know if mine was s i asked crosman and they told me it was on the older models like mine.

  5. Brian,

    The Crosman Powermaster 66 would be difficult to upgrade because of how it’s made. You can improve a Sheridan or a Benjamin 390-series gun because the parts have enough lattitude do be altered. I;m not sure the 66 has the same lattitude.

    I will do a series on modifying PCP and CO2 guns at some time, and I’ll show the things that go into a power upgrade.


  6. Jim,

    There seems to be a small but active group interested in Mendoza pellet rifles. I will talk to Pyramyd Air about their future and, if they are going to continue to be sold, I will try to get one to test for you.


  7. Ray,

    The Colt is much more refined than the C40, but if realism is not important, the difference would not justify the cost difference.

    Yes, Pryamyd has a 6-shot .22 revolver called the Hunting Master AR6 by Evanix.


  8. BB,
    i read about your blog about using peep sight and i find it really useful.
    bt i think u leave some issues not yet discuss. for example, i own a sharp innova,
    it came with peep sight system, it’s very accurate, but something bothers me, when i am aiming
    to a dark place, while i am in a brighter place, i sometime’s got glare on my peep sight’s hole.
    which makes it difficult to see the front hooded post. and because the post is hooded, i sometimes unable to see
    it in dim lighting. i use the air rifle to shoot rats at night, but i like to keep the peep sight because i find it very
    accurate.do you have any suggestion? i have tried to put some correction fluids on the post,
    but still can see em because the hood shadows the light.

    btw, i happen to came accros a new peep sight system from Mojo Sighting Systems (http://www.mojosights.com)
    has any one try to mount it on an airgun?



  9. haque,

    If lighting is a problem, you can solve it with a bigger peep hole. That’s how all the military rifles do it.

    As for your bfront sight, I think it has to be open, not hooded. A hooded sight is okay for target shooting but as you have discovered, it’s not good for low light.

    The Mojo looks interesting, but I haven’t heard of mounting one on an airgun.


  10. BB,





  11. B>B>,
    Can the entire gun be disassembled? Meaning can you remove the red dot sight, as well as the mount? After removing the mount, do you think there would be any noticible traces of its removal? (Or do you get a “clean” Colt M1911?) Last question, I assume the inside of the tip of the barrel was threaded to accomodate the compensator, would the other silencer advertized on the Pyramid site (for the ppk/s) fit on this gun? thanks as always.

  12. (Also, is the mount included in the tactical Colt, the same mount advertized on the Pyramid Air site under accesories?) I’m just trying to price out the gun versus what you get if you pay seperatly, the red dot sight I can’t seem to find anywhere, but I assume its about 80 dollars or so, the mount sells for about $28, so it seems like a bargin.

  13. The Tactical Colt IS a bargain, and yes the sights and mount can be removed. I had to install them before I took the picture. You get the standard rear sight with the gun, too.

    I don’t see the dot sight separately, either. It is a very nice sight, so my recommendation is to get the Tactical model.

    Yes the barrel is threaded on the inside. I don’t know whether the other silencer will fot, but Pyramyd Air would. Give them a call.


  14. One more question B.B.,

    If I purchased a Colt tactical, and a standard CP88 (or even a 6″CP88) would the mount (and of course MDS sight) from the Colt be easily transferable to the (non tactical) CP88? Does it somehow just screw in over existing screw holes?

    I don’t really care about the fake can, it’s the other add-ons I want, but it seems like the mount shown on both the tactical models of the CP88 and the Colt both come pre-installed with the same scope mount that sells on the Pyramid site (listed under accesories for standard non tactical versions of both guns)) for about $30, so i figured it would be “swappable” between the two pistols.

    Does this seem accurate?

  15. Ooops,

    Last question for real, if I bought a compensator (listed on Pyramid Air for about $40) for the stadard Colt 1911, can I assume that it would also fit this tactical model (with current can compensator removed of course)? Meaning, there is nothing different about the tip of this gun, other then the threading, over a non tactical Colt?

  16. Okay, here is how the dot sight mount attaches. It replaces the rear sight blade by sliding into the same dovetail. Forward of that about 1.5 inches there is a metal pad that bears down on the top of the slide. When it does, it puts tension on the part that is in the dovetail, causing it to twist back. That locks the base in place

    The dot sight simply clamps to the Weaver base, so it holds tight. As long as you don’t overtighten the screws, this is a pretty good system.

    And, yes, I believe the two guns will accept the same sight.


  17. I had been looking at this gun for a bit now but had passed on it due to the price for the tactical model. After reading your report I decided to get it. I figured the wife can only kill me once right?
    Enjoyable gun. Heavy, but it feels good in the hands. I grouped the pellets pretty well for me. Still learning how to shoot consistently. Took me a bit the get the red dot sighted in. I advise anyone who gets these sights to take to time read the instructions first. I got over anxious and didn’t look for the sight instructions. Hey! It’s a lot easier to adjust when you actually loosen the locking screw first! Who’d a thunk that? It is a bit irritating to have two separate allen wrenches to do the adjustments but perhaps that is normal. Personally speaking Walther could take a lesson from NC Star and instead of having four different size dots have the four different images of a dot; crosshairs, a circle with dot and circle with dot and crosshairs. I do like the Walther better than a cheaper red dot sight I had purchased when I wasn’t sure I would like one.
    On to the gun itself.
    Did I say it was a nice gun? It most assuredly is. The first few times of trying to use it double action I had a bear of a time. I believe it is the action of rotating the magazine that is the culprit as with it out the action is easier. This seems to loosening up some though with usage. It will be awhile before I can say for sure. I did find the single action to be nice. Very light pull to fire it. Felt a bit difficult to cock the hammer back with the shooting hand but since I’m still in the “shooting with both hands stage for accuracy” I found it easier to cock with my left hand. Actually did find it to seemly be more accurate with the compensator on it. Maybe the extra (slight) weight helped me.
    I did not seem to have any problems with the grip safety. Felt a bit odd but easy to get used to. I seem to recall you mentioning a certain way to hold this gun in another report but can’t seem to find it now. Would you mind repeating it or point me in the right direction? I guess I didn’t use the right search words.
    Overall I found it to be a very nice gun. Fun to shoot and as accurate as the shooter. Thanks for the report on it BB. It helped me make up my mind.


  18. Rabbitt,

    Glad you like the pistol!

    Here is the technique for holding with one hand. This won’t work for two hands. Grasp the pistol with your middle finger only, pulling it straight back into the web of your hand (between the thumb and palm). The other fingers and the thumb apply no pressure to the pistol. The trigger finger squeezes straight back toward the web of the hand.

    This hold is the one used by most veteran target shooters who shoot the 1911.


  19. The Colt 1911A1 has a special compensator made for it. But there is a tactical 1911A1 that appears to use the same compensator as the CP88.

    It depends whether the 1911A1 you get has threads for the compensator. So you have to determine that it does.


  20. Hi B.B. I’m having a real hard time deciding on whether I should get a black or a silver 1911. Can you give me your opinion and tell me when the colors would look best and which one matches dark blue and dark red best? By the way, Umarex replied and they don’t have any plans for the 1911. Thanks for all your help =)


  21. Hello, when I pressed the lever to open my Umarex Colt 1911 slide to put in the clip, the whole slide popped off. I tried to put it back together but it still pops off! Please help me fix the gun.


  22. Hello B.B.
    I was shooting my 1911 in double action and it shot just fine, but when I tried single action, the gun failed to push the pellet out of the magazine. I tried it again but with both hands pressing firmly down on the grip safety but the same thing happened. Please tell me what is wrong with my gun.
    Thanks for all the help you gave me.


  23. Josh,

    I hope you tried this with a fresh powerlet. Because a low powerlet could be the cause of it all.

    If the pellet doesn’t come out of the clip with a fresh powerlet, the hammer spring is weak. Umarex USA should be able to fix it for you.


  24. B.B.,

    Since I saw you say that the 1911 was you favorite Umarex pistol, I was wondering if you knew about the BB version that's available in Europe, but hasn't been released in the states yet?

    Check this out;


    They do ship to the USA, but I'd rather wait until PA has them.

    Do you know anything about this & if & when PA will have these available?


    – The BBA –

  25. B.B.,

    Yeah, their reply appeared to be from Germany, & their emails ended in .de

    It's supposed to be made by Umarex, & I know Umarex USA, Inc. is in Arkansas, but I'm pretty sure that the mother & main company of Umarex is in Germany.
    Which would explain why it was released in Europe first.

    I have the Colt 1911 pellet gun from Umarex, with the nickle finish & the wood grips & absolutely love it, so if that BB gun is made just as solid & realistic as the pellet gun… Then I think it is probably one of, if not, the best replica BB pistols out there.

    I remember you saying that Colt is your favorite Umarex pistol, & I know you love .45 cal firearms too, so I'm hoping that you're as interested in this as I am. 😉

    Pretty cool find eh?

    VERY anxiously awaiting what YOU find out,

    – The BBA –

  26. BBA,

    I just attended the 2009 SHOT Show and talked to all the Umarex guys (who are stationed in Arnsberg) about everything they make. This pistol never came up once. I don’t think it’s theirs.

    We (PA) are attempting to find out more about it.


  27. B.B.,

    Sounds good.

    I did some more looking to try & see where I first saw it, & I did.

    I know it says airsoft in the link, but it DOES shoot "4.5 mm steel BBs"

    Maybe this link will help;
    (Click on the boxes for large images of each & you'll be able to see the part of the manual etc..)


    Below is the page before that;
    (Note that they're ALL Umaraex products. It's in between the PX-4 & CP88)


    Then, if you click on Umarex, it's the last one on the top row;


    BTW… If you scroll down on the first link, & you'll see this;
    "Colt Special Combat

    – Rounds : 19
    – Only steel BBs 4.5 mm
    – Weight : 718 gr
    – Lenght : 222 mm
    – Velocity : 120m/s
    – Energy 2.5 J
    – Site adjustable
    – height adjustable

    Clean your gun at regular intervals (250 shots) using a maintenance cylinder. We vrecommend the use of the Walther Maintenance cylinder 41683


    UMAREX was founded in 1972 as the “UMA Mayer & Ussfeller GmbH” and first served the market for tear-gas and signal pistols and then air rifles, too.
    This was followed by the acquisition of the “Reck Sportwaffenfabrik Karl Arndt.” UMA was first reorganized as UMARECK and then as UMAREX.
    The goals for further corporate development were thus defined for Wulf-Heinz Pflaumer and Franz Wonisch. They became the “kings of replicas.”

    Sure looks like they're claiming it's made by Umarex eh?

    I hope so, because if it is, it should be pretty nice.

    I'm sure you guys will figure it out.

    Keep us posted,

    – The BBA –

  28. B.B.,

    Right on!
    So I done good then huh? lol

    Well, that's about as much info as I could find on it, so I hope so.

    If it is Umarex & PA does decide to stock them, please tell Joshua to put me down for the first one. Or at least the second one, if you take one to do a review on. 😉

    If it's a good pistol (which most every Umarex is) & it's built like the Colt 1911 of Umarex's, then it should be one of the coolest BB pistols next to the Crosman 677 Plink-O-Matic!(Which I just so happen to have one of.)

    Then I'll have two of the coolest sets of matching pellet & BB pistols!
    My 600 & 677 from Crosman, & then my Colt 1911 & this Colt Special Combat from Umarex. 🙂

    Wow… I'm starting to get pretty excited about this. I can't wait to see what PA finds out.
    With all the rough stuff that's been happening lately, it would be nice to see something cool happen for a change.

    I'm half tempted to just buy one from that website, but with the above in mind… I think it would be more rewarding to be the one responsible for starting the ball rolling on getting this on PA's website & then buying it from them. 😉
    That would be awesome if it turns out to be a great gun, & that's what happens.

    Well, keep us posted. I know I can't wait to see what happens.

    – The BBA –

  29. BBA,

    Yes, you done good. Pyramyd followed your links and agrees that this looks like an Umarex gun. They say it is not in the U.S. yet, but I don’t know if they have enough influence to bring it in or not.

    I have forwarded your request for an early one, but keep a watch, because if a lot of time lapses, things get forgotten.


  30. B.B.,

    Good to hear I was right, but what do we need to do to get it here for the US consumers?

    Don't worry, I am VERY interested in this gun, so I WILL do what I can to keep an eye on it.

    In fact, I may be coming into a little extra money soon, so maybe I'll buy one & have it shipped to you, so you can do a review on it, show it to Josh if need be, & then send it to me when you guys are done.
    Let me know if you'd be interested in this, because I emailed them & they said they WILL ship to the USA.

    Now I just have two questions…

    1) Has Umarex had airguns in the past the sold in other countries but never made it to the USA?

    2) I'm sorry but what do you mean by "The request is in the UUSA." ?

    – The BBA –

  31. BBA,

    I typoed one word in my message. I spelled “to” as “the.” The message should have read, “The request is in to UUSA.” That means to Umarex USA.

    Has Umarex had other guns that were not offered to the U.S. market? I don’t know, but probably. Europe is such a large market that they concentrate most of their attention there.


  32. B.B.,

    Thanks for clearing that up.

    I'm supposed to sell my hot rod & speed boat this month, & if I do… I'll have the money to buy that gun. Then I can ship it to you & Josh, so you can right a review & Josh can decide if it's worth fighting to get it available to the US consumers.

    So let me know what you think about that.

    BTW… I'm planning to place another order with P/A.

    I have 25 different pellets in .177 & .22, to the tune of 16,000 & 21,000 respectively plus 6,000 in .25 cal, 8,100 in Eun Jin 77gr 9mm, but only 4 styles & .45 cal & about 900 pellets, so I need to order so more in 45 cal.

    I remember that you were recently testing a 909S. So I have to ask… Do you have a favorite for the 909S?


    – The BBA –

  33. BBA,

    Since you will have the gun, why don’t you do the report? I’ll talk you through it.

    I like round balls in the 909 and I like the 200 grain pellets (bullets) PA sells.

    I have tried other bullets. but there aren’t that many in the .457 bore size of the 909.


  34. B.B.,

    Sure, I'd be glad to.

    Since it sounds like you have faith in my judgment, I'll take that as you agreed with or liked my comments & reviews on other guns I've posted about.
    Which BTW… Is a huge compliment coming from you. Thank you! 🙂

    You've seen my shooting abilities with pistols, so I know you have faith in me there, & since I know you like the accuracy of the Sig Sauer SP2202 (which I have), I can use that along with my C11 Tactical as a reference for accuracy, in addition to measuring the groupings.
    AND since I also have the Umarex Colt 1911 pellet gun, I'll be able to compare fit, finish, action, weight, balance, realism, etc., to that too.

    All of that plus my Alpha chrony with printer, should make it a breeze & give us some good points of reference.

    OK… I'll place an order for one in the next day or two, let you know when it arrives, & we'll take it from there.

    One thing though.. On the 200 grain pellets for my 909S, I WAS going to stock up on the 200 grain hollow point Buffalo Bullets because they're shorter than the 190 grain round nose, & I've heard that a shorter round is more stable at long distances,
    & for hunting, I'm thinking a hollow point is preferred, but PA they discontinued those in .45 cal.

    I have & like the round balls for it too, but more for general shooting, because they're accurate & cheaper. BUT… Now since the Buffalo Bullets are discontinued in .45 cal, I need a replacement for hunting.
    So for hunting, would you go with PA's 200 grain round nose or the hollow points?


    – The BBA –

  35. BBA,

    The 909 shoots too slow for the hollowpoint to work as it should, so I’d go with the most accurate of the two, whichever that turns out to be.

    When we were shooting the big bore hunt for TV last October, we shot a Merino ram and the bullet passed through the animal. The gun was about as powerful as a 909. So unless you hit bone, that’s what either bullet will do. The animal then bleeds out, much like when shot with an arrow.


  36. B.B.,

    I like those 200 grain HP Buffalo Bullets because they're shorter than anything else, & I CAN get them elsewhere. But even though I understand shorter bullets to be more accurate,
    I'm just not sure if their 200 grain HP even being noticeably shorter than the Air Venturi 200 grain RN, would be more accurate or not since we're comparing a RN to a HP?

    In other words, even though the Buffalo HP's are shorter, will the HP be less accurate because of them being HP's or would the RN be more accurate in spite of them being longer?

    I'm beating my head against the wall here because then again… How far are you REALLY going to be trying to drop medium to large game with the 909? Fifty yards, sixty yards? And at those distances is the accuracy going to be THAT different between those two rounds?
    I just haven't done enough testing with the 909 yet to really know.
    Man… I REALLY need to get out & do some testing.

    Let me ask you this… What is the maximum range you can safely & humanely take down a medium size dear with the 909, & at what distance for that application would you sight the scope in on it?


    – The BBA –

  37. BBA,

    Please don’t shoot any dears! But you can hunt deer all you like.

    The 909 is a 200 foot-pound rifle. While moist state fish and game offices say they want a minimum of 1,000 foot-pounds, a .22 Long Rifle will kill a deer very well when the shot is in the right place.

    A .45 caliber rifle with even more energy will take a deer about like a crossbow. The animal will take a few minutes to bleed out before expiring.

    The shot has to be in the heart-lung area. So the max range for the 909 is the max distance at which you can hold a five-shot group inside of 8 inches from the offhand position. For most people, that’s under 100 yards.

    As for which bullet will be more accurate, there’s only one way to determine that and it isn’t by talking. I decline to guess which bullet will work better because, in the case of two bullets, I’m only right about half the time. Buy both and shoot them.


  38. B.B.,

    Ya got me good on that typo. Too funny!

    I understand about the importance of shot placement & the results of a properly placed bullet of this caliber, weight, & the fpe behind it for game of that size.

    As for the best bullet, I'll do as you say, & just try them out for myself.

    All of this brings up a curious "what if" for me though…
    Assuming I CAN consistently place solid kill shots at 100 yards, would the 909S do the trick, & if not, what's the maximum distance it can take down an animal of that size?

    And with that in mind… In your opinion, what is the furthest effective range of the 909S with a 200 grain bullet, AND what distance would you sight in a 4 power scope for that gun, again with all of that in mind?

    I apologize for all the questions, but due to some VERY serious events I'm being forced to deal with at the moment, I have VERY little free time right now, so when I actually CAN get out to test & dial in the scope, the answers to these questions will be invaluable to me.
    Heck, I even just bought a range finder to help out because I'm so short on free time, that I literally need to make every second count when I actually am able to get out.

    OK now don't laugh, but I REALLY do try to keep the questions to a minimum, but if you could indulge me on these I'd be forever grateful.

    VERY sincerely,

    – The BBA –

Leave a Comment