1911 vs 2011 Pistol: What’s the Difference and the Best Holster for Each

If you’re a fan of old-school pistols, chances are you’ve heard of the 1911. But you may not have heard of its older cousin, the 2011. Both pistols are fairly similar, however they do have a few key differences. In this post, we’ll look at the differences and similarities between the 1911 vs 2011 pistol, along with the best holsters for each one.

Staccato 2011 holster and mag holder

The 1911 Pistol: Classic, Reliable Firepower

When it comes to pistols, the 1911 is anything but the new kid on the block. The venerable design dates back over 100 years. It comes to us courtesy of John Moses Browning, perhaps one of the greatest American gunsmiths of all time. 

In many ways, the 1911 was revolutionary. It introduced the world to the 45 ACP cartridge, which countless members of the military and police (not to mention even more civilians) still use today. There’s a reason it’s still so popular.

One of them is its magazine-fed system. The 1911 was one of the very first magazine-fed pistols in the US. That gave it a huge edge over its competition when it emerged, which were mostly revolvers. Its single-action trigger also played a role in its success.

While it was originally designed for 45 ACP, you can now find the 1911 in countless calibers. Versions chambered in 9mm, 380 ACP, and 10mm have all become extremely popular. Regardless of caliber, one distinctive feature of 1911-platform guns is a single-stack magazine.

1911 Alligator Holster

2011: A New Take on a Classic Design

The 2011 was an attempt to modernize the venerable 1911 pistol design. The idea came from Staccato, a Texas-based gunmaker. They made a few adjustments to the 1911’s design.

The main problem they identified with the 1911 in comparison to modern guns was its capacity. The 1911’s single-stack magazines could hold a maximum of 8 rounds, which simply wasn’t enough in the age of high-capacity polymer pistols like the ubiquitous Glock. As a result, the 2011’s base magazine has a 16-round capacity – enough to make any other pistol blush.

The next major change came with caliber. The people at Staccato decided to chamber most (but not all) 2011s in 9mm instead of 45. These days though, you can find them in all kinds of calibers, just like the 1911.

Staccato 2011 Sting Ray Holster

1911 vs 2011: Similarities, Differences, and Holsters

Both the 1911 and 2011 are remarkably similar. It’s a testament to John Browning's ingenuity. The biggest differences between the 1911 vs 2011 are its frame. As we mentioned earlier, the 2011 features a double stack magazine, while the 1911 has a single stack. That’s not the only difference, though. The 2011’s frame is a two-piece design, while the 1911 is one solid block of metal.

One more huge difference between the 1911 and the 2011 is size. Since most 2011 variants have a double-stack magazine, they’re a little chunkier than their older counterparts. That means that you can’t use the same holster for a 1911 that you would for a 2011.

Luckily, that’s not a huge problem with a little help from the Southern Trapper. It’s easy for us to build you a custom leather gun holster for your favorite 2011 or 1911 variant (or both). If you’re interested in learning more, answer this simple four-question survey to find the perfect holster for your individual needs.

IWB Cowhide Holster

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