Bryce M. Towsley shares his thoughts on finding the best pistols for 3-Gun competitions in this month's edition of American Rifleman
Designing The Best Pistol for 3-Gun
Three-gun competition can trace its roots back to the Soldier of Fortune matches in Las Vegas, Nev., starting almost 30 years ago. From those wild beginnings, it has expanded to become the fastest-growing shooting sport around today.
At the moment there is no signel governing body controlling the rules for all 3-gun competition. I like that; too many rules spoil a shooting game. Most of the big 3-gun matches are "Outlaw" matches, which means they set their own rules. Of course, there has to be some consistency or it would get ridiculous. No shooter wants to spend thousands of dollars on gear only to find out that it's disqualified for use the next big match. So, the International Multi-Gun rules (IMG) are more or less the guidelines used by most match directors. That doesn't mean those rules apply to every match, as there are some variations. The U.S. Practical Shooting Ass'n (USPSA) also has its own set of rules, and they are invoked at some big matches. Then there are the new Int'l Defensive Pistol Ass'n (IDPA) rules, which are different from those of everyone else. These rules can be important to your choice of pistols.
My first 3-gun match was put on by the Coast Guard Academy in Hartford, Conn., and I wasn't sure what to expect. In such cases, I always err on the side of "bring everything." My son and I loaded the truck with guns and ammunition until the springs bent backward, but we found out that we still didn't have the right stuff.
I shot the match with an M1911 with 10-round magazine and 230-gr. hardball factory ammunition. I quickly figured out that the gun didn't hold enough rounds and had to much recoil to be competitive. The M1911 with a different ...
Read the rest of the American Rifleman article here.