AllOutdoor Review: Talon Grips 1911 Modular Grip System
Nicholas Chen 06.15.21
Do you shoot a 1911? Does it need a better grip? The 1911 is one of the best designed handguns ever. The grip angle is perfect and while some people online doubt its reliability, it has worked for a long time. Talon Grips has a new 1911 modular grip system that might help improve the grip texture on the 1911.
Talon Grips Ala Carte
Talon Grips makes precut textured decals to add grip to your handgun. It is sort of like grip tape. They are precut pieces designed to fit the host handgun pistol grip. The Talon Grips modular grip system for the 1911 consists of four individual pieces. You have a front strap, back strap and the side panel decals. There are four different textures to choose from.
- Rubber (black)
- Granulate (black)
- Rubber (Moss)
I chose the rubber moss grips and the pro grips. The rubber moss looks like flat dark earth color. While the Pro grips look like skateboard black grip tape.
Installing The Talon Grips
One aspect I wanted to test with the Talon Grips was to compare them to aggressive grip panels and checkering on the front and back straps. I used my friend’s Colt Commando 1911. He has VZ grips and decent factory checkering on the straps. How well will the Talon Grips attach to the checkering? What about the side panels?
I did not want to use the VZ grips so I used a set of Magpul 1911 grip panels. They have a decent grip texture already on them.
The checkering did exactly as I thought, the rough texture does not allow the Talon Grips to adhere; however, the flat sides of the 1911 pistol grip frame allow more than enough contact surface for the front strap and back strap grips. I went with the PRO grips for the front and back as my hand is in constant contact with them when shooting.
I then wrapped the Rubber moss grips to the Magpul grip panels. Similar to the front and back straps of the 1911, the Magpul factory grip texture does not allow the grip decal to adhere that well. The grip decals are wider than the grip panel so you can fold the excess underneath the grip panel where the material is flat and smooth.
One area of concern when installing the left side Grip Talon decal was the magazine release cut-out for the thumb. However I was able to push the material down into the cut-out without issue.
Shooting the 1911 with the Talon Grips was as advertised. The PRO grips provided plenty of traction. However, how did it do against the factory texture and grip panels with texture already? About the same. The Colt factory checkering is very effective. The VZ grips and even the Magpul grip panels provide plenty of traction. So I decided to try another pistol that does not have texture on the grips. I pulled the Talon Grips off the 1911 and the adhesive on the flat surfaces of the frame were really stuck on. With a little coaxing I was able to remove them. While they look worse for wear, they are still useable.
My next host for the Talon Grip 1911 modular grip system was my Star BM9 pistol. It is a pseudo 1911 style and while the grip is slighltly different I wanted to see if I could make the Talon Grip decals fit.
The Star BM9 has no checkering and the factory grip panels have some texture, but have been smoothed down from use.
With a little bit of coercion I was able to get the Talon Grip modular grip system to fit the Star BM9.
The grip panels for the Star BM9 are not the same as a 1911, but you can make it work.
While not perfect, it works well. The front and back straps are the most improved. I found that my hands do not make a lot of contact with the side panels so I don’t think I really need them.
Final Thoughts On The Talon Grip Modular Grip System
Due to the scarcity of ammo, I was unable to do a long term test with a lot of rounds through the guns. I am not sure how long these grip decals will last on their host guns. Another concern would be if the decals trap moisture. If they do it would rust the steel frame like on my Star BM9 pistol.
I did not really find the grip decals all that useful over a well designed and textured 1911 like my friend’s Colt Commander. I could see the benefit of these grips on a standard Mil-Spec 1911 that has smooth front and back straps as well as untextured grip panels. In that case the Talon Grips would be a great upgrade. The modular grip system is bought ala carte. Each part is $4.99, but if you choose the Pro grip tape texture, then each piece is $6.25. For more information check out Talon Grips online.