Rifleman Q&A: The Portsider

by
posted on February 14, 2017
port.jpg

Q: On p. 139 of the 1987 edition of Gun Digest, there is a picture and mention of a Falcon Portsider Left Hand 1911 made by Falcon Firearms of Granada Hills, Calif. What became of Falcon Firearms, and did it ever produce such a gun? Are there other lefty M1911s?

A: Falcon Firearms Mfg. Co. was incorporated in Granada Hills, Calif., on July 10, 1985. The last statement it filed with the state was on July 24, 1989, and it appears to have gone out of business shortly thereafter. According to some sources, in 1986 the firm started producing a left-hand pistol patterned after the Colt Model 1911 that ejected to the left rather than to the right. As far as I can tell, there is no source available that gives the total production of these “Portsider” pistols. They are not commonly seen, but the 2016 Standard Catalog of Firearms gives prices for them as $225 for poor-condition examples up to $700 for those new in the box.

Several firms have made left-hand pistols; perhaps the most well-known was Randall Firearms Mfg. Co., which was incorporated in California in September 1982. That firm was also short-lived, and it is sometimes said that Falcon obtained the Randall tools and leftover parts. Randall made several versions of left-hand pistols. Reportedly its quality was exceptionally good and production quantities were modest, so collectors seem to value Randall pistols highly. The overall market for left-hand pistols does not appear to be adequate to support large-scale production, but there is at least one current manufacturer. Cabot Guns of Sarver, Pa. (cabotgun.com) produces full- and Commander-size left-ejecting pistols, as well as mirror-image, two-gun sets.

—Charles W. Pate

Latest

Riton Optics offers a variety of riflescopes, red-dot optics and a complete line of accessories and was founded in 2013 in Tucson, Ariz. by Brady Speth, a U.S. Air Force veteran and former Capital Police Officer. For 2023, Riton optic is celebrating its first decade doing business.
Riton Optics offers a variety of riflescopes, red-dot optics and a complete line of accessories and was founded in 2013 in Tucson, Ariz. by Brady Speth, a U.S. Air Force veteran and former Capital Police Officer. For 2023, Riton optic is celebrating its first decade doing business.

Riton Optics Celebrates 10th Anniversary

Riton Optics offers a variety of riflescopes, red-dot optics and a complete line of accessories and was founded in 2013 in Tucson, Ariz., by Brady Speth, a U.S. Air Force veteran and former Capitol Police Officer. For 2023, Riton optic is celebrating its first decade doing business.

The Rifleman Report: 100 Years & Counting

As most anyone who is married knows all too well, failing to remember a significant anniversary is a mistake best avoided. In view of that, we always strive to point out important milestones as they pertain to the world of firearms—and in this issue we mark two.

Preview: Grayl UltraPress

A more compact option than the company’s similar GeoPress, the Grayl UltraPress is a portable water-filtration system that can produce 16.9 ozs. of potable water in only about 10 seconds—making it a potentially life-saving addition to any hunter’s pack.

I Have This Old Gun: Maynard Carbine

Six years after his tape primer’s appearance, Dr. Maynard debuted a unique drop-barrel carbine. It was light, simple and easy to operate. One merely lowered a lever to permit the gun’s barrel to tilt downward off the frame and expose the chamber.

Editor’s Choice: Dementia And Firearm Safety

The 64-page booklet put out by DementiaEducation, Inc., discusses the topic of Alzheimer’s disease and the other causes of dementia with particular emphasis on how they impact responsible firearm ownership and use.

The Armed Citizen® Jan. 30, 2023

Read today's "The Armed Citizen" entry for real stories of law-abiding citizens, past and present, who used their firearms to save lives.

Interests



Get the best of American Rifleman delivered to your inbox.