1911 Question


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Werewolf
July 28, 2007, 12:50 PM
I've got a S&W 1911 Target and a Kimber Ultra Tac 2.

Both are 1911's - the Smith being as close to a real one as you can get without actually being one and the Kimber a 90% clone (take down isn't standard).

Here's my question. What's the difference between a Government, Officer, Commander and Defender? I've seen 1911's described as all of the above. I think it has something to do with barrel length.

What class would the Smith fall into? What class would the Kimber Ultra Tac 2 fall into?

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Father Knows Best
July 28, 2007, 01:03 PM
Goverment = the original 1911. Full size frame and 5" barrel.

Commander = full size frame and 4.25" barrel.

Officer = compact frame and 3.5" barrel.

Defender = not sure.

You forgot my favorite 1911 configuration, the CCO (Concealed Carry Officer). It combines the compact frame of the Officer model with the 4.25" barrel of the Commander.

the pistolero
July 28, 2007, 01:11 PM
What's the difference between a Government, Officer, Commander and Defender? I've seen 1911's described as all of the above. I think it has something to do with barrel length.
Barrel length and frame size as well, if I remember correctly. A Govt. model has a 5" barrel, while a Commander-size model has a 4.25" barrel, an Officers' Model has a 3.5" barrel and a Defender has a 3" barrel. I think the Govt. and Cmdr. models have the same size frame, while the Officers' and Defender models have a slightly smaller frame. I am guessing the S&W Target would be a Government or Commander-size, but the Kimber is built on the smaller Officer-size frame.

Werewolf
July 28, 2007, 02:17 PM
So if I want to buy custom grips I should get Govt for the Smith and ones made for Officer size for the Kimber?

Both guns have ambidextrous safeties. Does that matter when purchasing grips? On both the kimber and the smith the right side grip is just a mirror image of the left but some grip makers mention grips for 1911's with ambidextrous safeties like they're different... :confused:

the pistolero
July 28, 2007, 02:54 PM
So if I want to buy custom grips I should get Govt for the Smith and ones made for Officer size for the Kimber?
Yup. As for the ambidextrous safeties, that one might be dicey. I have a Springfield Loaded (Govt. size, with the ambi safety) that I bought some Hogue rubber wraparound grips for, and I had to cut a small notch out of the grip on one side, but I have the same kind of grips (Officer-size) on my Kimber Tactical Ultra II -- which also has the ambidextrous safety -- and I did not have to do that. But I guess if they're mirror images it doesn't matter, though I could be wrong.

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