Ed Brown received his FFL and began business as a part-time gunsmith in 1968 under the name "Brown's Gun Shop". For 20 years on evenings and weekends, he honed his skill, experience, and reputation as one of the world's finest pistol-smiths, while during the day he worked as a tool and die maker, CNC programmer, and CAD/CAM designer. Ed began shooting IPSC and Bianchi Cup in 1980, and was ranked in the Top 16 of the World as a championship combat shooter.
Frustrated by the second-rate quality of 1911 parts he had to work with, he envisioned a full line of quality aftermarket parts of superior designs, that met the needs of the modern combat shooter. On March 30, 1988, this vision became reality when he quit his day job as a tool and die maker to launch his parts business. Within months, the world's largest firearm components distributor, Brownells, added Ed Brown's famous beavertail, magwell, and hammer to their catalog. Parts production began to take off, while demand for Ed's gunsmithing work continued to increase. His gunsmithing career peaked in 1991, and he was awarded "Pistolsmith of the Year" by his fellow Guild members, a prestigious honor awarded only to those who have shown the highest degree of honesty and craftsmanship in their work. That same year, Ed announced he was changing his focus from gunsmithing to parts manufacturing exclusively, as time was too limited to effectively do both.
Ed Brown Products, Inc. incorporated June of 1992 to manufacture a complete line of 1911 components and accessories. Custom pistol work was no longer being accepted.
In 1998, after manufacturing all the major components of the 1911, Ed's two sons Travis and Wade joined the business full time. A new direction was established - the design and manufacture of a complete line of Ed Brown firearms. The next few years were invested in plant expansion and R&D for the design and manufacture of the Ed Brown 1911 frame and slide.
In 2001, the Brown family began to selectively establish an authorized dealer network across the country for Ed Brown firearms. Within a few short years, Ed Brown firearms were present in high-end retail establishments across the US, and in many foreign countries.
The presidential elections of 2008 and 2012, combined with the 100 year anniversary of the 1911, created an unprecedented demand for our 1911 product line, and years of explosive growth followed. Ed Brown retired from the business in 2010 at age 65, leaving the business operations in the hands of his two capable sons.
Today, Ed Brown Products, Inc. operates in a state-of-the-art 20,000+ square foot, Missouri-based facility. We have invested over $15 million dollars in the latest, high-tech CNC equipment which turns forgings and bar stock steel into some of the world's finest firearms. Leading edge technology is gracefully combined with traditional, old-world craftsmanship under the direct supervision of the Brown family. Our track record now spans nearly 50 years of success, and our complete line of innovative 1911 parts, and 1911 handguns, represent the pinnacle of engineering, hand craftsmanship, and performance. Our goal as a family-owned and family-operated business is to sustain our competitive advantage into the future, as we remain focused on the needs of our customers, and continue to invest in new manufacturing methods and technology, to raise the bar for custom 1911 excellence.
The Ed Brown Way
1. Engineered for performance
We started with the original 1911 prints, and then CAD/CAM redesigned the entire firearm to take full advantage of modern manufacturing technology. We re-toleranced all the parts, and left extra stock in the critical areas, so every part could be precision fit correctly, the first time, by a master craftsman. Only the finest materials are called for to meet our engineering specifications, which in most cases means forgings, or pre-heat treated steel for precision machining. We incorporated all the proven “better mousetrap” aftermarket parts seamlessly into the original 1911 design, in a tasteful and elegant way. Every part has been redesigned, enhanced, or more closely toleranced for one thing: Performance.
2. Precision machined in America
All of the main components in our firearms are manufactured in-house under the direct supervision of the Brown family. This means that we have virtually complete control over the quality and delivery of the final product. We have invested over 15 million dollars in state-of-the-art CNC manufacturing technology specifically for the firearms industry. This is what it takes to truly make your own components in-house. Inside our 20,000+ square foot, Missouri-based facility, you will find the latest in 5-axis machining centers, swiss type turning machines, precision broaching, surface grinders, fine polishing equipment, fiber lasers, and coordinate measuring machines. It is this investment of resources that has made us the leader in the field, and will keep us at the leading edge in the future.
3. Hand-crafted to perfection
In addition to all the high tech inspection methods and equipment we use, every part on every gun is carefully hand-fitted by a master craftsman, under direct supervision of the Brown family. The instant you pick up an Ed Brown 1911, you can see and feel the quality, in all the details. We go that extra mile by putting more hand fitting and finishing into our firearms than any other manufacturer, resulting in some of the most attractive firearms available anywhere at any price.
Those in the industry know and choose Ed Brown as their first choice. The top firearms dealers stock and recommend Ed Brown. Cabela's chose us as their first high-end 1911 for their famous gun library. Jeff Cooper's family chose Ed Brown to manufacture the Jeff Cooper pistol to commemorate his legacy. The majority of reputable gunsmiths have used Ed Brown parts for many years. Many manufacturers both large and small outsource their OEM production to Ed Brown. We receive sales and market share data from the major parts distributors, and Ed Brown comes out on top, year after year.