best 1911 style gun for CCW?


June 22, 2006, 03:44 PM
So I am looking for the best 1911 style gun for CCW. I'd like something compact and less than 600$ if possible. I am a huge fan of the 1911 style platform and sweet SAO trigger. Calibers I am looking for are .45 or 9mm.
Current front runner (but over 600 is a S&W Sc 1911A1)

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June 22, 2006, 04:07 PM
Perhaps a Springfield Champion .45 or if you don't mind a brisk recoil, a Micro/ultra compact in .45.

Perhaps a Paraord slim-hawg in 9mm?

Ala Dan
June 22, 2006, 04:41 PM
A Springfield G.I. or MIL-SPEC would be nice, and within your price range~!:cool:

But, if you can annie-up a few more $$$ the Springfield Operator
would even be a better choice~!:D

June 22, 2006, 05:05 PM
stylish 1911's, most around that price range. Also, the Springfield Mil-spec that Ala Dan listed is a great buy-probably my next purchase.

Edit: I wanted to include Auto-Ordinance. They make 2 1911's both close in price. I checked them out at a store recently in CT and they seem nice and were under $450.00 NIB.

June 23, 2006, 04:09 PM
I'd look into the Ed Brown Bobcat model 1911a1 .45acp.

It looks great. It's a Commander size 1911 that is rounded in the grip area. I'm not sure of the prices/details but you can check online.

All the best;


PS: Many major firearm companies are selling .38super 1911a1s now too. The .38super offers good power with low recoil.

June 23, 2006, 06:26 PM
I've got a Springfield Mil-Spec Ultra-Compact (3.5" bbl) and it's a smooth reliable pistol. I've heard some complaints about short barreled 1911s being prone to jam, but I've seen none of that.

Springfield doesn't sell a 3.5" Mil-spec any more, but their current ultra-compact looks good, and has a few extra features (beaver tail, fancy sights, hogue grip).

Of course, some 1911 fans maintain that even the larger frames are still pretty concealable. And larger generally means less expensive.


June 23, 2006, 07:22 PM
Go with your first choice, S&W 1911 or commander. A bit over 600, but you will not be disappointed.

June 23, 2006, 09:31 PM
I have a RIA compact 3.5 inch barrel, on order, I should have it next week.
$400 total with shipping and FFL transfer. I carry my 1911 full size now. I don't mind carrying it most of the time. I'm hoping the compact will fill the gap between my .38 snub and my 1911 full size.

June 23, 2006, 09:43 PM
Para-Ordnance LTC!

June 23, 2006, 10:16 PM
Colt or S&W Commander sized guns. The Commander seems to be the smallest 1911 gun that has consistent reliability and is really no harder to carry than an officers model. The Colt light weight commander or the S&W scandium frame commander sized guns make excellent carry guns if you like the 1911.

Otherguy Overby
June 23, 2006, 10:49 PM
I'm partial to my STI LS40. Sure it's all steel and a lttle heavy for some but it is the skinniest 1911 (sorta) made. Mine is reliable and is my main carry pistol.

June 23, 2006, 11:34 PM
My 4" Kimber Pro Carry II was $575 new in box. It has an alloy frame so it weighs ALOT less than an all-steel gun.....of course that makes it recoil-heavy but carry-friendly.

June 24, 2006, 06:58 AM

I personally would be looking at a full size 5" 1911.
Forged slide and as much machined parts inside as you can find.

The 1911 hides pretty well. I have carried one for the last couple of years. In carrying handguns the hardest thing to hide is the thickness. That was my main consideration for getting a 1911. The length of the barrel matters very little in CCW from 4" to 5".

The 1911 5" is the most sorted of the species and for CCW you would want something that works! ... every time.

Get a GOOD holster that carries the sidearm close to your body and you will forget it is there.

I carry a Series 70 from '81 vantage, but I am sure you will find a manufacturer and model to fill you specs.

I hope this helps you in picking a friend.

Good hunting


June 24, 2006, 06:19 PM
I would agree mostly on the 4" to 5" - there isnt much difference. In fact, I carry my 4" Kimber in a 5" holster - I really liked the holster and couldnt find one in 4". So basically the only thing Im saving myself is the weight of the extra 1" of slide and barrel.

I carry the gun daily, 10 below or 100 degrees......shorts, pants, t-shirt, polo...doesnt really matter.

Its worn, its got a speck of rust here and there......still goes bang.

June 24, 2006, 07:09 PM
JUST got an S&W 1911PD Gunsite edition. This scandium gun has everything I want in a CCW piece! I paid $775 and think it an EXTREMELY good BARGAIN for what I get. I shot it today and it is very accurate. More accurate than any of my sub 5" 1911s, some of which have been worked over by big name smiths. It even has a very crisp 4.75 (measured) trigger pull, and the sights were very close at 50' with Win. ball.:D :D :D

June 25, 2006, 09:08 PM
I am carrying a (32 oz) Para C6 in a SmartCarry as I type this. I've been wearing it all weekend. My C6 will feed and function with anything I can fit into the mag.

I'd like it even better if it weighed a bit less, and I may look harder at a Colt Defender (22 oz) one day soon. Recoil will increase but ease of carry will offset that...

Life is full of compromises. BTW--I am also looking at the 18 oz Kahr P-45, which will doubtless "bite" a bit harder, but will carry very nicely.

You pay your money and you take your choice...

June 25, 2006, 10:07 PM
You are on the right track with the Scandium pistols. I have a Para P12 which I carry IWB, (alloy frame), and I have a liteweight Commander in reserve. The only reason I carry the Para over the Commander is that I really like the Commander, and it is hard on pistols to carry them all the time. Some will tell you that the all steel pistols are the only way to go. I say bunk. If I carried as part of my job, and did not have to conceal, all steel would be my choice. But as a concealed weapon, that you hope you will never fire in anger or fear, the lightest is the best, as long as it is reliable. The S&W's I know nothing about, except what I have read, so you know more than me. Just don't let these guys talk you into carrying around an extra pound of weight when it ain't necessary.

June 26, 2006, 11:15 AM
I would look hardest at alloy framed 4 and 5 inch models. I have a 5" aluminum framed Springfield, and it is great for carrying in a quality IWB holster (Milt Sparks VMII for me). The nice thing about SA aluminum framed models is that they use ramped barrels- no worries about gouging a feed ramp.

The problem is that they are expensive- you would be doing well to find one for under $700-750. The only exception would be the GI model Lightweight Champion- you might be able to score one of those for less than $500, but it won't have a bunch of the nicer features (sights are a notable example).

Otherguy Overby
June 26, 2006, 12:10 PM
One thing I find perplexing is: Why do so few manufacturers make CCO sized 1911s? (4.25 inch pistol on the shorter grip officer's frame)

If you don't want Kimber or Springfield, the choice is limited, at best.

June 26, 2006, 01:06 PM
I have a Colt Defender which is very accurate and reliable. There is also the Colt compact. While both are less than 4in. barrels, they have a strong following because of the reliability. I got my Defender LNIB for $550 OTD, its been well worth the price, and no modifications were needed.

June 26, 2006, 01:25 PM
One thing I find perplexing is: Why do so few manufacturers make CCO sized 1911s? (4.25 inch pistol on the shorter grip officer's frame)

If you don't want Kimber or Springfield, the choice is limited, at best.

I totally agree, more would be better.

BTW- Does SA still even offer a CCO sized 1911?

Otherguy Overby
June 26, 2006, 02:58 PM
Colt and Kimber don't make true 1911s. They have additional safeties as "features" which may fail when you most need them. My other objections are for the very few manufacturers who do make CCO sized 1911s is they make them with aluminum and/or MIM.

Sheesh, just gimme a real steel pistol with a short grip frame and a 4.25 inch barrel. Apparently that's just too difficult... They must be neo-liberals.

June 26, 2006, 03:02 PM
The full-size Colt Series 70 is like the original Colt 1911, no firing pin safety, etc. Warrior by Kimber also has no firing pin safety. Good luck.


June 26, 2006, 05:28 PM
4.5in barrel, officers frame, all steel, no MIM = Nighthawk Custom Talon III:)

June 26, 2006, 08:16 PM
Been carrying a full-sized 5" Springfield 1911 for years now in both IWB and OWB holsters without a hitch. I don't recall it ever being uncomfortable, but I have had to discreetly adjust it on the belt more often than not after sitting down and standing up so that the handle wouldn't print or pick up the hem of the shirt tail to expose itself.

June 27, 2006, 03:41 PM
.380 Mustang

June 27, 2006, 03:47 PM
You wont be disappointed with a S&W Sc or PD. This one is without a doubt the best gun I've ever had...andI have a few.

And it's pretty. :D

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