CMP Issues Info On The Purchase Of The Surplus 1911s

Late last night, Mark Johnson, Chief Operating Officer of the Civilian Marksmanship Program, sent out an email with info on how the CMP was planning to handle sales of the approximately 10,000 1911s they will (or should) be receiving from the Department of the Army. As I’ve mentioned before, I hold a 03 Curios and Relics FFL. I responded immediately to Mr. Johnson questioning why 03 FFLs could not be the recipient of the firearm. I also posted his first draft to a mailing list for C&R FFLs.

You will note below the added verbiage saying that 03 FFLs cannot perform a NICS check on the recipient. In a note I received back from Mr. Johnson, he said, “An 03 FFL can’t perform the in person background check on the recipient end. BATF and the Army prefer the second background check and shipment to the 01 FFL.”

Pardoning me for being a little blunt but Mr. Johnson’s response is utter bullshit. There is no need for a 03 FFL to perform a NICS check on themselves. They are LICENSED by the freaking BATFE to begin with. Even the original NICS check run by the CMP is superfluous. If this surplus 1911 was coming from anywhere else but the CMP, the seller would, after the receipt of a signed copy of my C&R FFL, ship that pistol directly to my door.

Frankly, there is only one of these 1911s I want. It has the serial number 1910270 and was issued to my Dad on his second tour of duty in South Vietnam.

If you hold a 03 FFL and would like to send a note to Mr. Johnson, his email is

Below is how the CMP plans to conduct these sales:

To all CMP constituents:
The CMP Board of Directors has discussed at length how the sales of
1911s would be handled, if the CMP were to ever receive them from the
United States Army.
Some preliminary decisions further clarified:
  1. Decisions concerning the grade and pricing of the 1911s will not
    be made until inspection has occurred of a substantial quantity which
    will take an estimated 150 days post receipt.
  2. All laws pertaining to the sale of 1911s by CMP will be strictly obeyed.
  3. Potential
    purchasers will have to provide to CMP a new set of documents
    exhibiting:  1) proof of U.S. Citizenship, 2) proof of membership in a
    CMP affiliated club, 3) proof of participation in a marksmanship
    activity, 4) a new form 2A with notary, 5) a signed copy of the 01
    Federal Firearms License in which the 1911 will be transferred to. 
  4. A
    NICS background check will be performed by CMP on the customer to
    assure the customer is eligible to purchase prior to shipment to the FFL
    licensed dealer. The customer must receive a “proceed” from NICS prior
    to shipment of the pistol to the FFL licensed dealer.
  5. The
    CMP customer will be required to complete a form 4473 in person at the
    FFL dealers place of business, successfully passing a NICS check
    performed by the FFL holder, before the pistol can be transferred.  This
    is a second NICS check performed on the customer.
  6. Qualified CMP customer will only be allowed to purchase one 1911 per calendar year.
  7. No 1911s available in the CMP stores, or on line, only mail order sales.
  8. CMP will set the date in which it will accept orders for the 1911s. The date will be posted to the world.
  9. Orders will only be accepted via mail order delivery.
  10. Orders will only be accepted post marked on the date or after, no early orders.
  11. Once CMP receives 10,000 orders, customer names will be loaded into the Random Number Generator.
  12. The Random Number Generator will provide a list of names in sequence order through a random picking process to CMP. 
  13. Customers will be contacted in the sequence provided by the Random Number Generator.
  14. When
    the customer is contacted a list of 1911 grades and pricing options
    that are available will be offered for selection of one.
  15. As CMP proceeds down the sequenced list less grade and pricing options will be available. Again, this done completely random.
Note: 1911 type pistols purchased from CMP cannot
be transferred to 03 FFL (curio and relic) license.  BATF and the United
States Army prefer the second background check be performed by a “store
front” FFL dealer.  Each customer purchasing a 1911 type pistol from
CMP will be subjected to two NICS background checks, one performed by
CMP and the other performed by the FFL dealer the pistol is being
shipped to.

Mark Johnson
Chief Operating Officer
Civilian Marksmanship Program

Now We Know What Colt Is Releasing (Part 2)

In Part 1 I wrote about the details of the new Colt Cobra. This post will cover the remainder of the new introductions from Colt’s Manufacturing. Given that they are all 1911s, they aren’t new per se but they do include new calibers and updated features. All of this information comes courtesy of Yamil Sued who released this information early this morning.

Starting with updates to the Colt Gold Cup, it will now be the Gold Cup Trophy and will come in both .45 ACP and 9mm. The next two pictures give their specifications.

Yamil gives his impressions of the Gold Cup Trophy in the video below:

Now to the big boomer – the Colt Delta Elite Rail in 10mm. As Yamil says, this is really just a modification of the Delta Elite as only the rail feature is added.

The final three 1911s are variations on the Colt Commander including a new Wiley Clapp LW Commander in 9mm and a reintroduction of the Combat Commander. Their specs are below:

About Those CMP 1911s

The Firearm Blog has done some excellent work on estimating the potential prices for the 10,000 Army-surplus 1911s that will be sold be the Civilian Marksmanship Program. Steve estimates that the price will probably be about 30% less than the going retail rate for a WWII milsurp 1911. He comes up with that figure by looking at the going rate for a M1 Garand from the CMP and the prices you will find on sites like You can read his analysis here.

The Firearm Blog TV has produced a good little video explaining how it will all work.

One of the must-do things if you want to purchase any firearm or ammunition from the CMP is membership in an affiliated club. They have a search page to find a club in your area.

But what do you do if there are no clubs nearby or the club in your area is so stuck in a 1950s mindset that it just isn’t worth the injury from banging your head into the wall over their stupid rules? There are alternatives. For example, if you are a member of the Glock Shooting Sports Foundation, then you belong to an affiliated organization. Likewise if you joined the Illinois State Rifle Association (ISRA) so as to support their litigation in Chicago, you are a member of an affiliated organization.

Another alternative is the Garand Collectors Association. A membership there costs $25, qualifies you to buy from the CMP, and gets you a very nice quarterly journal with all things M1 Garand. Moreover, they have a close relationship with the CMP and they send membership rolls to the CMP on a regular basis. This is the direction that I plan to head.

CMP Will Be Able To Sell Surplus 1911s If Obama Signs The Bill

I reported back in May that Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL) had proposed that the Civilian Marksmanship Program be allowed to sell surplus 1911 pistols. Currently, it is costing the Department of Defense approximately $200,000 annually to store them.

The House passed the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2016 with Rep. Rogers’ amendment in it. However, the version passed by the Senate did not contain the provision authorizing transfer of these pistols to the CMP. Given this and other differences, the NDAA FY 2016 had to go to a conference committee to iron out the differences.

In what can only be considered a win, the Senate acceded to the House’s wishes and agreed to a pilot program.

Transfer of surplus firearms to Corporation for the Promotion of
Rifle Practice and Firearms Safety (sec. 1087)

The House bill contained a provision (sec. 1085) that
would authorize the transfer of surplus firearms to the Civilian
Marksmanship Program (CMP).

The Senate amendment contained no similar provision.

The Senate recedes with a clarifying amendment that
establishes a pilot program limited to .45 caliber handguns and
restricts the amount of handguns that can be transferred to the
CMP to no more than 10,000 units annually.
Additionally, it
requires the CMP to provide a report to Congress after the
conclusion of the pilot program, obtain a federal firearm
license to conduct any and all handgun sales, and adhere to all
local, state, and federal laws in respect to handgun sales.

It’s a start.

 The conference report was sent to both houses on September 29th. The House voted 270-156 to accept the conference report on October 1st. This past Wednesday, October 7th, the Senate likewise voted to accept the conference report by a vote of 70-27.

Going over the list of senators who voted for and against the conference report you see some oddities. For example, notoriously anti-gun Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) voted for the conference report. Conversely, pro-gun rights Republicans like Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Rand Paul (R-KY) voted against it. That said, I imagine their votes had nothing to do with the CMP provision and everything to do with other things within the NDAA FY 2016.

I do have one caveat:  the bill still must be signed by Barack Obama. I have not kept up with the politics of this bill to see whether he plans to sign or veto it.

I have no idea what the cost will be or the condition of the surplus 1911s. That said, I think it is time for me to start assembling my CMP qualification portfolio and join a CMP club like the Garand Collectors Association. If you are a member of the Glock Sport Shooting Foundation, you qualify as it is a CMP-affiliated club.

H/T Rob Reed