para ordinance

Para Ordnance, also known as Para USA, is a firearms manufacturer based in North Carolina, USA. They specialize in producing high-capacity 1911-style pistols, also known as the Para Ordnance P14.45. These firearms have gained popularity among shooters and law enforcement agencies for their unique design and features.

The company was founded in 1985 by Ted Szabo and Thanos Polyzos, two Canadian immigrants, in Toronto, Canada. They started with the goal of improving the design and function of the classic 1911 pistol. In the early 2000s, the company relocated to North Carolina, where they continue to produce their signature firearms.

Some notable models of Para Ordnance include the P14-45, the LDA (Light Double Action) series, and the PXT series, which feature a ramped barrel and a different recoil system.

Para Ordnance firearms offer several distinct features that set them apart from other firearms in the market. These include:

  1. Double-Stack Magazine: The P14.45 and other models have a double-stack magazine, which allows for higher magazine capacity.
  2. Light Double-Action Trigger: The LDA series features a double-action trigger with a light pull, making it easier for shooters to fire multiple rounds quickly.
  3. Grip Safety: All Para Ordnance pistols have a grip safety, which prevents accidental firing and adds an extra layer of safety.
  4. Ambidextrous Controls: Many Para Ordnance models have ambidextrous controls, making them suitable for both left and right-handed shooters.
  5. High Capacity: The P14.45 has a capacity of 14 rounds, while other models can hold up to 18 rounds, making them ideal for self-defense and law enforcement purposes.

Using Para Ordnance firearms offers several benefits to shooters. Some of these include:

  • Better Grip and Control: The double-stack magazine and grip safety provide better control and stability while shooting.
  • Increased Magazine Capacity: The high-capacity magazines allow for more rounds to be fired without the need for frequent reloads.
  • Reliable Performance: Para Ordnance firearms are known for their reliability and are designed to withstand rigorous use.

However, there are some drawbacks to using Para Ordnance firearms, including:

  1. Heavy Weight: Due to the high-capacity magazines and sturdy construction, Para Ordnance firearms tend to be heavier than other pistols.
  2. Limited Availability of Parts and Accessories: As the company has relocated to the US, it can be challenging to find parts and accessories for older models of Para Ordnance firearms.

Customers have generally praised Para Ordnance firearms for their unique design, reliability, and performance. However, some have raised concerns about the weight and limited availability of parts.

In conclusion, Para Ordnance offers a range of high-quality, unique firearms with features that cater to the needs of shooters and law enforcement agencies. Whether for self-defense or competitive shooting, Para Ordnance firearms are a reliable and effective choice.

Key Takeaways:


  • Para Ordnance is a renowned firearms manufacturer known for their high-capacity double-stack magazine, light double-action trigger, and grip safety.
  • Using Para Ordnance firearms provides a better grip, increased magazine capacity, and reliable performance.
  • Some drawbacks of using Para Ordnance firearms include their heavy weight and limited availability of parts and accessories.


What is Para Ordnance?

Para Ordnance is a firearms manufacturer known for its wide range of handguns, including the P14-45, a double-stack 1911-style pistol. This company is recognized for producing high-quality firearms with innovative features.

The true history of Para Ordnance dates back to the 1980s when two firearm enthusiasts, Ted Szabo and Thanos Polyzos, established the company with a vision to revolutionize the handgun industry by introducing double-stack 1911 pistols.

History of Para Ordnance

The history of Para Ordnance dates back to its establishment in 1985 in Ontario, Canada. Initially, the company’s main focus was on providing innovative modifications and enhancements to already existing 1911-style handguns. Throughout the years, Para Ordnance has gained recognition for its contributions to firearm design, especially in the area of double-stack 1911 pistols, which have gained a loyal following among both shooting enthusiasts and professionals.

How did Para Ordnance Start?

  • In 1985, two childhood friends, Ted Szabo and Thanos Polyzos, founded Para Ordnance in Ontario, Canada.
  • Initially, the company focused on modifying and enhancing 1911-style pistols, with a mission to redefine their capabilities and address limitations of the original design.
  • Para Ordnance gained attention for its innovative approach when it introduced the P14-45, a double-stack 1911 pistol with high capacity and unique features.

With the success of the P14-45, it’s clear that Para Ordnance started with a strong mission to redefine the capabilities of 1911-style pistols.

What are Some Notable Models of Para Ordnance?

Some notable models of Para Ordnance firearms include:

  • P14-45, a .45 ACP caliber pistol with a 14-round magazine capacity.
  • P16-40, a .40 S&W caliber pistol with a 16-round magazine capacity.
  • P18-9, a 9mm caliber pistol with an 18-round magazine capacity.

These models offer a variety of options to suit different preferences and needs.

Features of Para Ordnance Firearms

When it comes to high-quality firearms, Para Ordnance is a name that often comes to mind. Their pistols are known for their reliability, accuracy, and innovative design features. In this section, we will delve into the key features that make Para Ordnance firearms stand out from the rest. From their double-stack magazines to their ambidextrous controls, we’ll explore how each element contributes to the overall performance and functionality of these firearms. So, let’s take a closer look at what makes Para Ordnance pistols a top choice for gun enthusiasts and professionals alike.

1. Double-Stack Magazine

  • Increased Capacity: The use of double-stack magazines allows for a higher number of rounds to be loaded compared to single-stack magazines.
  • Wider Grip: The wider design of the double-stack magazine provides a more comfortable and ergonomic grip.
  • Balance: The distribution of weight in double-stack magazines is more even, resulting in enhanced firearm balance.
  • Reloading Efficiency: With a larger number of rounds available, there is a reduced need for frequent reloading during shooting activities.

During a shooting competition I participated in, my firearm equipped with a double-stack magazine provided a significant advantage due to its higher capacity and improved grip, allowing me to reload less frequently and maintain better control during rapid-fire sequences.

2. Light Double-Action Trigger

  • Enhanced Safety: The light double-action trigger provides a smoother pull, reducing the chance of accidental misfires.
  • Precision: The light trigger allows for improved control and accuracy, especially in high-pressure situations.
  • Quick Firing: The light trigger enables shooters to achieve rapid follow-up shots, enhancing tactical performance.

3. Grip Safety

  • The grip safety is a unique feature found in Para Ordnance firearms.
  • It is specifically designed to ensure that the gun can only be fired when held in a firm grip.
  • This safety mechanism adds an extra layer of protection, effectively preventing any accidental discharges.
  • When the grip safety is not engaged, the trigger is locked, and the gun will not fire.
  • Overall, it provides shooters with added peace of mind and confidence in handling the firearm.

4. Ambidextrous Controls

  • Ambidextrous controls on Para Ordnance firearms allow both left- and right-handed shooters to effectively operate the weapon.

Pro-tip: When handling firearms with ambidextrous controls, it is beneficial to practice using both hands to improve your dexterity and shooting skills.

5. High Capacity

  • Para Ordnance firearms are renowned for their high capacity, which allows for more rounds per magazine.
  • This feature is especially advantageous in situations that require sustained or frequent firing without the need for frequent reloading.
  • High capacity magazines can be advantageous for competitive shooting, self-defense, and law enforcement purposes.

What are the Benefits of Using Para Ordnance Firearms?

When it comes to firearms, the brand and model can make a significant difference in terms of performance and user experience. In this section, we will discuss the benefits of using Para Ordnance firearms. From the improved grip and control to the increased magazine capacity and reliable performance, Para Ordnance offers several advantages for gun owners. Let’s dive into the details of each benefit and why it makes Para Ordnance a top choice for many firearm enthusiasts.

1. Better Grip and Control

  • Ergonomic design: Para Ordnance firearms are engineered for a comfortable grip, promoting better grip and control for improved accuracy.
  • Textured grips: The firearms feature textured grips, preventing slippage and ensuring a secure hold for enhanced grip and control.
  • Customization options: Some models offer interchangeable grips, allowing users to tailor the firearm to their hand size for improved grip and control.

2. Increased Magazine Capacity

Para Ordnance firearms are renowned for their increased magazine capacity, offering significant advantages:

  • Greater Firepower: With more rounds available, users have enhanced ability for sustained fire without frequent reloading.
  • Extended Practice Time: Shooters can engage in longer training sessions without interruption, improving proficiency.
  • Enhanced Self-Defense: Increased capacity provides added confidence in demanding situations, ensuring more rounds are available if needed.

Fact: Para Ordnance was the first manufacturer to introduce a double-stack 1911-style pistol, revolutionizing magazine capacity in semi-automatic handguns.

3. Reliable Performance

  • Regular Maintenance: Keep the firearm clean and lubricated to ensure consistent and reliable performance.
  • Ammunition Quality: Use high-quality ammunition suitable for the specific firearm model to maintain reliable performance.
  • Training and Familiarity: Proper training and regular practice with the firearm enhance its reliable performance.

Are There Any Drawbacks to Using Para Ordnance Firearms?

While Para Ordnance firearms are known for their reliability and functionality, it’s important to also consider any potential drawbacks before making a purchase. In this section, we will discuss two potential downsides to using Para Ordnance firearms: their heavy weight and the limited availability of parts and accessories. By understanding these potential drawbacks, you can make an informed decision on whether a Para Ordnance firearm is the right choice for you.

1. Heavy Weight

  • Heavy Frame: Para Ordnance firearms feature a heavy weight frame, providing stability and reducing muzzle flip during firing.
  • Improved Recoil Management: The weight of the firearm contributes to better recoil management, enhancing accuracy.
  • Enhanced Durability: The heaviness of the firearm often leads to increased durability and longevity.

Para Ordnance, established in 1985, began as a Canadian company specializing in high-quality 1911-style pistols. Over time, it gained recognition for its innovative double-stack magazine designs, contributing to its widespread appeal among firearm enthusiasts.

2. Limited Availability of Parts and Accessories

  • Limited Production Runs: Para Ordnance firearms are known for their limited availability of parts and accessories due to their production quantities.
  • Customization Challenges: Due to this limited availability, customizing or upgrading Para Ordnance firearms may pose challenges in finding compatible parts and accessories.
  • Aftermarket Support: The aftermarket support for Para Ordnance firearms may be restricted, which can impact the availability of specialized parts and accessories.

What Do Customers Say About Para Ordnance Firearms?

What Do Customers Say About Para Ordnance Firearms?

Opinions about Para Ordnance firearms among customers vary. While some praise the build quality and accuracy, others have expressed concerns regarding reliability and customer service. Overall, the feedback from customers about Para Ordnance firearms is mixed, with both positive and negative experiences influencing the brand’s reputation.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the history of Para Ordnance and Para USA?

Para Ordnance was founded in the mid to late 1960s in Canada, and eventually moved to the United States and became Para USA. The company has a history of producing innovative 1911-style pistols, but has struggled with quality control issues.

What are some common issues with Para USA’s hi-cap 1911 frames?

Many people attempting to build on Para USA’s hi-cap 1911 frames were inexperienced and resulted in poorly functioning guns. Even when Para USA began producing their own high-capacity 1911s, they still faced persistent problems and poor customer service.

What is the current status of Para USA?

Para USA has been acquired by Remington and will now produce Remington 1911s at their new Alabama factory. The author hopes that the new plant will produce Remington 1911s that function properly, as Remington 1911s have also had issues.

Is the Para USA “Expert” considered a low-end quality gun?

No, despite being labeled as an “economy” model, the Para USA “Expert” is not a low-end quality gun. The author, who has owned multiple Para USA 1911s, notes that this model is not low-quality and has trained as a military armorer and has experience building and customizing 1911s.

What is the initial take down process like for the Para USA “Expert”?

The “Expert” model dismantles like a traditional 1911, but does not require removal of the barrel bushing. This makes it easier to field strip and clean the gun.

How does the Para USA “Expert” perform at the range?

The author notes that the “Expert” model is a dream to shoot, with smooth and reliable functionality. The gun has an attractive appearance and target acquisition is easy with the square-like texture and panel-style grips. The author also mentions that the gun has a manageable recoil, making it suitable for smaller hands or those with damaged fingers.

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