What Does ACP Stand For?
ACP Stands for “Automatic Colt Pistol”
ACP is used to denote a specific bullet cartridge that was originally designed in 1904 by John Moses Browning for the Colt Company.
John Browning was in the process of designing a semi-automatic pistol. The term automatic in ACP is in reference to the automatic reloading.
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The .45 ACP
The most famous ACP ammo is the .45 ACP or sometimes called the .45 Auto. The .45 ACP is a rimless straight-walled cartridge. Not all of the ACP cartridges were rimless.
The story behind the .45 ACP is that Browning was already designing a semi-automatic pistol and the round for it which was .41 caliber.
But that all changed when the US military decided that they needed a minimum of .45 caliber for stoping power in the field. At that point, Browning redesigned the .41 caliber cartridge and the semi-automatic pistol and he came up with the Colt model 1905 and the .45 ACP cartridge.
This pistol later turned into the still relevant Colt 1911 and the Colt .45 ACP was also later used in the Thompson Sub-Machine Gun. The Colt 1911 was the main sidearm of many miliaries through the 20th century. If you want to pick up a 1911 remember to get a good pistol cleaning kit.
Why did the US Army need a minimum of a .45 caliber handgun?
During this time the United States was deep into the Philippine-American War and there was the Moro Rebellion.
The Moro tribes in the Philippines were known to have ruthless warriors that when shot they would stop the bleeding and keep charging.
Since many of the Moro Juramentado warriors were attacking as a suicide mission they ran towards the U.S. Calvary even when they were shot.
This is the point when the United States decided that they needed a bullet with more stopping power.
Now Colt was betting on themselves when they designed both a pistol and a cartridge that would fit it.
In this type of situation if one didn’t work out nither would the other since the only cartridge that would fit their new line of semi-automatic pistols was their ACP rounds.
The first semi-automatic handgun was produced by Salvator Dormus in 1891 and lots of others came out in the following years. In 1896 Paul Mauser created the C96 which was the first mass-produced semi-automatic handgun.
It was also in 1896 when John Browning was working on his design in Belgium. Brownings designs were first manufactured for Fabrique Nationale (FN) and then later for Colt.
Other ACP Cartiges and Rounds
The .45 ACP was not the first ACP round that Browning designed. He also created the .25 ACP, .32 ACP, .38 ACP, .380 ACP.
The .25 ACP is a semi-rimmed straight-walled pistol cartridge. It was invented in 1905. This is a very small round that had typically been used in very small “vest pocket” guns.
The .32 ACP is a semi-rimmed straight-walled cartridge. It was invented in 1899. It also goes by the names 7.65×17 mm SR Browning and the 7.65 mm Browning Short. This was the first ACP cartridge that Browning designed. This was such prolific cartilage that a firearms expert Geoffery Boothroyd told Ian Fleming that James Bond should use a Walther PPK with the .32 ACP round. At the time Ian Fleming was writing the .32 ACP was the most popular handgun round worldwide and would have been available in most countries.
The .38 ACP is a semi-rimmed straight-walled cartridge. Not to be confused with the .380 ACP which 9 x 17mm where the .38 ACP is 9 x 23.
The .380 ACP is a rimless straight-walled cartridge. The other rimless option is the .45 ACP. It was designed by Browning and introduced by Colt in 1908. Other names for this round would be the .380 Auto, 9mm Browning, 9mm Short, 9 mm Browning Court.
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Where is ACP now?
The Browning ACP rounds have had huge popularity since the early 1900s.
It is a round that is still popular around the world. But, as far as law enforcement and military carry this is no longer the preferred round.
Today most militaries and law enforcement personal carry a pistol that works with the 9x19mm Parabellum cartridge. The 9 x 19mm Parabellum uses much higher pressure and uses less brass, lead, and powder while having higher accuracy and around the same overall performance.
Should You Buy A Colt 1911 With .45 ACP?
Well, that is really up to you some of the benefits of using this weapon with the .45 ACP is that the .45 ACP has lots of stopping power while not having as much recoil as weapons using the same size round.
The 1911 is a pretty hefty gun but it is slim. The heft of the gun helps lower the recoil and increase accuracy but since it is so slim it can be carried easily.
Also if any bit of nostalgia is playing a part in your decision in a handgun has loads of nostalgia.
And if you have the correct reloading equipment you can reload your .45 Auto brass also.
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So what does ACP mean?
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ACP is an abbreviation for Automatic Colt Pistol. They were designed by John Browning and first introduced by Fabrique Nationale (FN) and then later for Colt. The ACP cartridges have been a part of most major wars and conflicts in the world since 1900.