Interchangeable grips and grip scales are a lot like holsters in that it can take a few tries to find the ones that fit and feel “just right”. One platform that this author has tried quite a few different grips out on is the 1911. Recently, Strike Industries was kind enough to send me out two examples of their new BMC, or bulk molding compound grips for full-size 1911s. According to Strike:
The grips are made of specialized bulk molding compound constructed of anti-water and oil absorption, heat resistant, high impact, and high bending strength polymers.
BMC is somewhat like G10, but instead of being a fiberglass-epoxy resin laminate, it is fiberglass reinforced polymer. The advantage is that it can be injection or compression molded rather than cut.
Fitting and Installation:
While Strike Industries describes their BMC grips as having a grey color, I find them to be more off-white. They look fine on a black 1911, but if one is expecting more of a gunmetal-grey or navy-grey color, this isn’t it. I took out and inspected both the golf-ball and “streamline” pattern grips and found the golf-ball to be the most comfortable for my hand. The dimples were aggressive enough to stay securely in the hand, but not overly so as to be uncomfortable or abrasive. The grips were a bit thicker than my old G10 grip scales, but not enough to throw off my trigger finger placement or the drawstroke. The grips are cut to accommodate ambidextrous safety levers, and provide some protection for the plunger tube. The left panel also has a relief cut near the magazine release.
The grips were a very tight fit on the pistol I was trying to put them on, as it had a magwell that sat just outside the circumference of the frame. At first they would not fit on. After a few passes of sandpaper, however, the grips fit tightly and securely onto the grip screw bushings.
The main test of the grips came during a 300-round course of fire during a combat pistol course at Hughston Shooting School. I tested the grips both with and without gloves. I found the grips to be comfortable with the right amount of grip texture. They stayed securely in the hand, and were not too aggressive as to be abrasive. I fired the pistol strong and weak hand unsupported and the grips did their job extremely well, as my hits were accurate and consistent. Though the day was hot and my hands were sweaty at times, I never felt the grips became slick or slippery in any way.
At the end of the course, I inspected the grips and found that they did indeed repel water and oil, and did not have any scratches or dents in them. They were, however, rather dirty, exacerbated by the fact they are so light in color. I’m not sure if it is a property of the BMC to hold dirt, or if it was a fault of the pattern, but they really held onto the fine dust from the range.
Overall, I like the golf-ball pattern BMC grips a lot, and decided to leave them on this particular 1911. As of writing this article, they were priced at $18.00. That’s quite a bit less than most G10 1911 grips out there, and BMC claims to have similar properties as G10 as far as liquid resistance and durability. If one is looking for budget-priced replacement grips for a 1911, give the Strike Industries BMC grips a look. They are a great value for the money.
- Water and Oil Resistant
- Hold dirt
- Only one color option (for now)
For more information, please visit Strike Industries’ website.
Thanks to Hughston Shooting School for the course and range time!