Back in December, 2015, we reported that Cabot Guns was planning to make a pair of “extra-terrestrial” 1911 pistols forged from a meteorite that is as old as the Earth itself. It was an ambitious goal for the 4-year-old custom gunmaker based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and success was hardly assured. At the time, the company had only managed to create the grips for the pistols—but that was then, and this is now.
Cabot finally revealed the matched set of meteorite 1911s at the recent 2016 NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits in Louisville, Kentucky. As far as anyone knows, they are the only pair of 1911s ever constructed from meteorite iron.
The guns were forged from a 77-pound hunk of Gibeon meteorite, which was once one big chunk of ore flying through space that was broken up when it hit Earth’s atmosphere in prehistoric times. It was strewn in fragments over an area 171 miles long in Namibia, near Gibeon. Gibeon meteorites are composed of an iron-nickel alloy with significant amounts of cobalt and phosphorous.
“Destined to be different, Cabot’s innovative design and manufacturing team tackled a project that is without peer in feats of modern human engineering,” Cabot stated on its website. “From a space-rock, we crafted a complex and precise mechanism. We unlocked the ancient secrets of a lifeless hunk of iron-nickel alloy, formed it and gave it breath with which to speak, showcasing an other-worldly creation to the world. Billions of years through time and space are perfected now into an ultimate achievement of American design, willpower, and can-do spirit.”
They are a handsome pair of guns, with finishes and touches that preserve the exterior look, and in some places, the actual surface of the meteorite from which they were born. Almost every component of the guns is made from the meteor.
“Several of the components have been acid-etched and the meteor’s distinctive Windmanstatten pattern is clearly visible. Meteorite iron is hardly the most uniform of materials to craft a firearm with, but Cabot Founder and President Rob Bianchin says the pistols were forged with a mixture of modern technologies. Cabot engineers utilized a combination of X-ray photography, 3-D modeling, CAD-CAM design, aerospace construction techniques, electron-beam technology, and old-fashioned craftsmanship to build the out-of-this-world pistols.”
Not only that, but apparently the guns work too. Bianchin said in a press release that the guns were test-fired at Cabot’s Indiana facility.
“It was even more nerve-racking than the first time we cut through the meteor. But they shot. Everything worked exactly as it should.”
In December, Cabot estimated the pair of pistols would sell for about $1 million at auction. But now, the gunmaker is selling the set for a monstrous list price of $4.5 million.
If sold, the set would be the most expensive pair of handguns ever purchased.
Recently, an 1886 Winchester lever-action rifle with ties to Geronimo sold at auction for $1.266 million, making it the most expensive single firearm ever sold, but sets and pairs have sold for more.