compact, metal .45acp options?


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justin22885
March 18, 2015, 09:50 AM
im looking for some options for a compact 45acp for concealed carry and home defense, i dont want anything with a plastic frame, and something with a sub-4" barrel.. two options that come to mind is the officer size 1911 and the bersa thunder 45acp model, and i like the bersa thunder 45acp model more as it does have a rail for a flashlight, which i prefer for home defensive purposes but i dont have much experience with their quality

any other options i should consider?

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bannockburn
March 18, 2015, 09:54 AM
I have an older Colt Officers Model that has been a reliable and fairly accurate gun. You might want to check out their Defender and New Agent models as well.

justin22885
March 18, 2015, 10:08 AM
the defender appears to have a rail under the barrel, or at least some of them do, this is good, i want something i can put a light on, and i am a fan of the 1911, i also prefer single action or DAO triggers, i prefer the consistency between the first shot and the last

Winkman822
March 18, 2015, 01:26 PM
Some flavor of 1911 would be the obvious choice, however, I will caution you that 3.5" 1911's will tend to exhibit problems a little more frequently than their larger brethren.

You may also want to have a look at the Sig P220 Compact SAS.

moxie
March 18, 2015, 02:15 PM
You could always look for Star PD in good shape. They show up at pawn shops and on the auction sites for <$500.
The Star PD is a great gun.

Sunray
March 18, 2015, 02:15 PM
A Colt 1911 Officers Model has a 3.5" barrel. The Bersa Thunder 45 ACP has a 3.6" barrel. You say you don't want sub 4". Or you do?
Loss of velocity makes some difference too. An HP, for example, requires velocity to reliably expand upon impact. Muzzle flash and blast won't be pretty with a wee barrel either. If a pistol isn't fun to shoot, you won't practice with it. If you don't practice regularly, you're better off with a stick.
Rethink the light. It just adds weight and you need a specially made holster.

justin22885
March 18, 2015, 02:42 PM
i think 3.5-4" for the barrel length would give me good compactness and decent performance... i actually forgot about the sigs, and the sigs have a lot of options and different trigger mechanisms.. i think one of the compact P220s with the SAO trigger would be perfect.. so, i'll make that number 1 right now, unless i can find a reliable, less expensive alternative

anyone know anything about the bersa thunder 45 compact pro?.. it looks like a decent handgun

bikerdoc
March 18, 2015, 02:56 PM
I have the ATI Titan, a true officers model.
no problems in 3 years. A dream to carry. Up grade the actmags and you got a winner.

Smith357
March 18, 2015, 08:42 PM
S&w cs45

Deog
March 18, 2015, 08:43 PM
Colt new agent

sinbad339
March 18, 2015, 10:47 PM
I have a sig 1911 Fastback Carry; 4.2 inch barrel and "bobbed" grip. If you're not a 1911 purist, and can live with the external extractor, its a great gun. Its in my carry rotation in Garret holster.

joneb
March 19, 2015, 12:29 AM
I'll pass on a 1911 with a barrel shorter than 4.25". The issues grows larger with barrel lengths less than 4.25".

justin22885
March 19, 2015, 06:55 AM
i dont really like how any of the 1911s shorter than a commander size looks or feels, i think i've narrowed it down to the sig P220 compact and the bersa thunder 45 UC pro, and unless someone has a solid reason not to give the bersa a try, im inclined to save the $400 difference for a sig, and get the bersa

JDR
March 19, 2015, 09:00 AM
I would recommend a Springfield Range Officer Compact (4" bbl.), l've had a few chances to shoot a couple of these in .45 ACP and it is a excellent EDC / CCW alternative, I plan on getting a 9mm version. I have a Ruger SR1911 Commander length (4.25" bbl.) which is just one of the coolest guns I own.

BTW, there is a lot of internet tribal knowledge about short barrelled 1911's and I take that stuff with a grain of salt. Regardless of barrell length, a properly tuned and maintained 1911, using quality ammo and aftermarket magazines, in the hands of a competent shooter, will work just fine!

But it looks like you've answered your own question, and I hope the Bersa works for you.

bikerdoc
March 19, 2015, 09:10 AM
Tbe Bersa is a good choice. My son in law has had one for 2 years, trouble free, and a comfortable carry.

jrdolall
March 19, 2015, 09:13 AM
Bersa for carry. Adding a flashlight to a carry gun causes issues for me. I like the idea but not the applications I have seen. For HD I do have a 9mm carbine with a light and really like it for that scenario.

justin22885
March 19, 2015, 09:54 AM
Tbe Bersa is a good choice. My son in law has had one for 2 years, trouble free, and a comfortable carry.
which caliber is his?

justin22885
March 19, 2015, 09:55 AM
Bersa for carry. Adding a flashlight to a carry gun causes issues for me. I like the idea but not the applications I have seen. For HD I do have a 9mm carbine with a light and really like it for that scenario.
the flashlight would be for home defense, like if i need it at night, i wouldnt use it for conceal carry out of the house

bikerdoc
March 19, 2015, 02:56 PM
His is a 40 cal

justin22885
March 19, 2015, 07:47 PM
His is a 40 cal
i see, so he has the 40 cal version of the same pistol im looking at, nice to know his has been pretty reliable.. with that in mind, the price, it has the features i look for, the size i want.. i think i'll go with that for a concealed carry piece.. i already have a commander size 1911 on my short list so i didnt see a need to add another 1911 by geting an officer size

dusty14u
March 19, 2015, 09:07 PM
I have the ATI Titan, a true officers model.
no problems in 3 years. A dream to carry. Up grade the actmags and you got a winner.
I agree. Mine has been great after replacing recoil springs with Colt Defender set.

shootr
March 19, 2015, 09:32 PM
Colt CCO

MachIVshooter
March 19, 2015, 10:35 PM
Pushing the heavy side for carry, but the S&W 4516 or 4566 would fit your criteria. I like my 4516 a lot.

bikerdoc
March 20, 2015, 08:01 AM
Dusty said

Quote:
Originally Posted by bikerdoc
I have the ATI Titan, a true officers model.
no problems in 3 years. A dream to carry. Up grade the actmags and you got a winner.

I agree. Mine has been great after replacing recoil springs with Colt Defender set.

Indeed, a needed mod. According to the importer in Rochester NY the new ones have been upgraded

agtman
March 20, 2015, 08:50 AM
OP dude initially said he was looking for "something with a "sub-4" barrel."

So, as Deog mentioned, a Colt New Agent or, if it has to have traditional fixed sights, something like a Defender model fits that criterion. Both are 3", 7+1 1911s.

I've gotten used to my NA's trench sight system, and it's now sent about 500-rds down range without a hiccup.
With these 3" 1911s you do have to watch the recoil springs. Change them out about every 600-rds or so and you're GTG.

New Agent.

http://i372.photobucket.com/albums/oo166/agtman/NA2.jpg (http://s372.photobucket.com/user/agtman/media/NA2.jpg.html)

justin22885
March 20, 2015, 07:48 PM
hmm, i really liked the old beretta cougar pistols.. i knew they sent production to the stoeger factory, but i didnt know they were making the 45acp versions.. what do you guys think about the 45acp stoeger cougar?

JRC332
March 20, 2015, 08:07 PM
S&w 4513tsw

nebeel
March 20, 2015, 08:42 PM
EAA Witness Compact :). Nice size, not too big, not too small.

Crosser
March 20, 2015, 09:41 PM
hmm, i really liked the old beretta cougar pistols.. i knew they sent production to the stoeger factory, but i didnt know they were making the 45acp versions.. what do you guys think about the 45acp stoeger cougar?
I have the Stoeger Cougar in 45acp....no issues what so ever...easy to clean and re-assemble....I really like it...it is all steel and on the heavy side...

justin22885
March 20, 2015, 09:58 PM
i carry a 2 1/2lb revolver now, so a little on the heavy side doesnt bother me, but the weight difference between that and the bersa is something to consider, i need to find a gun shop that has them both so i can handle them side by side

tomrkba
March 20, 2015, 10:29 PM
The SIG P220 Carry has a 3.9" barrel. However, it's quite tall. The SIG P220R Compact is smaller with a 6+1 round capacity.

http://www.sigarms.com/CatalogProductDetails/p220r-compact.aspx

Tom Fury
March 21, 2015, 07:25 AM
S&W 457 is a sleeper, especially stainless...
Cheers, TF

Tom Fury
March 21, 2015, 07:31 AM
Anybody bad-mouthing the "sub 4" barrel 1911 is knee jerking; you won't change my mind on this; have owned several (Colt, Detonics, Springfield, Kimber and SIG); also HAVE OWNED Colt CCO and Commanding Officer; no problems ever; they deserve your trust; Never ever a problem with any S&W of that size either (CS-45, 4513, 4516,457) just the same boring reliability of the full sized frames; the little ones seem to hit much better than 4566 though, unfortunately...

justin22885
March 21, 2015, 08:32 AM
hmm, i already have at least two really good options around the $400 mark, the cougar and the bersa thunder UC pro so i wont be considering the sig anymore, i do like sigs, and will likely get a full size model later, but for a simple carry piece i'll save the money

Ray P
March 22, 2015, 12:51 AM
I agree with Moxie, but if you can't find a Star PD, the Firestar M45 is a great option. Low cost and solid steel.

gruney
March 22, 2015, 05:04 AM
I have 9UC and it's a good gun. Over 1000 rounds, no problems.

Every review of the 45UC I have read has been positive. The Thunder 9, 40, and 45 all seem to be good reliable pistols.

The pistols you are looking at are both DA/SA, and you originally wanted SA. They are also both decocking safeties, so you can't carry "cocked and locked". The Stoeger has a slide mounted safety that keeps me away from Beretta and Walther (and other) designs. If there is going to be a safety, pushing down better turn it off, and it better be on the frame.

agtman
March 22, 2015, 08:26 AM
S&W 457 is a sleeper, especially stainless.

Agree, those were nice. But I haven't seen one for sale anywhere in years.

MICHAEL T
March 23, 2015, 11:42 PM
Buy the Bersa The Thunder Pro in 9mm or 45 one of the most dependable in Bersa Line up .

Have several on Bersachat.com that carry them

StrawHat
March 24, 2015, 06:45 AM
Colt CCO
Good choice! And Dan Wesson makes a version. Both 4 1/4" barrels and the shorter Officers grip frame.

Kevin

JTQ
March 24, 2015, 07:53 AM
justin22885 wrote,
hmm, i already have at least two really good options around the $400 mark, the cougar and the bersa thunder UC pro
May I suggest you do a little holster research at this point. You've picked two pistols that aren't real common and may not be covered by all holster makers. The particular holster you intend to use may be available for your gun choice, so it may not be a problem, but it may be worthwhile to check before you go any further.

pblanc
March 24, 2015, 09:39 AM
The Stoeger Cougar 8045F is an excellent value in an accurate, soft-shooting .45 cal ACP semi-auto pistol. It is a traditional double action semi-auto with a slide-mounted safety/decocker lever. Unlike the Beretta 90 series pistols, the Cougar F models can be converted to G models, in which the lever works as a decocker only, relatively easily without slide modification.

It has two features that some see as undesirable. One is the frame size. Although the barrel is compact (3.7 inch) the frame is full-size. The grip is rather chunky, like many Berettas so it might not be ideal for those with smaller hands. The grip is also seen by some as too long to be ideal for a carry weapon, but this is a matter of opinion.

The second issue is the magazine capacity which is a bit limited at 8 rds. No worse than a Government model 1911, but there are certainly pistols with greater magazine capacity for a frame and grip of that size.

If the Cougar 8045 frame is too big to suit, you could shop around for a used Beretta mini-Cougar 8045. Thus far, Stoeger has not chosen to produce the mini versions of the Cougars that Beretta made. The mini-Cougar has a shorter grip but will accept magazines for the full-sized Cougar versions. The flush-fit magazines for the mini-Cougar 8045 have a 6 rd capacity.

The Stoeger Cougar 8045 comes with an accessory Picatinny rail which might make it incompatible with some holsters that were made for the Beretta Cougars (which had no rail). If you intend to carry the pistol outside the waistband, the Fobus plastic Evolution roto-holster made for the Beretta PX4, which comes in either a belt or paddle version, will work just fine for the Stoeger 8045.

justin22885
March 24, 2015, 08:52 PM
its a really tough decision, in many ways the cougar seems better, more aftermarket ,more grip and finish options since its steel, so if i wanted to blue it i can, more holders.. but the bersa seems to be more compact, lighter, probably better overall for carry.. and then with all the handgun options available and greater capacity, im considering sticking with 9mm for carry pistols as it seems 45acp options are limited, and stick to 45acp in open carry / "duty pistols"

TfflHndn
March 24, 2015, 09:11 PM
I have a Citadel commander-size .45 with Hogue grips on it that has been great for me. Very reliable and accurate, and at a good price. Picked it up at Cabela's during a sale. Check 'em out.

justin22885
March 25, 2015, 10:06 AM
i really am starting to consider 9mm, the hit you take on the shorter barrels and the magazine capacity isnt much of a difference in full size double stack pistols, but when you get down to the compact, concealed stuff the difference become much more apparent.. anyone disagree with this logic at all? would a 9mm be a better choice for the sub 4" pistols?

StrawHat
March 25, 2015, 04:01 PM
...i really am starting to consider 9mm ... would a 9mm be a better choice for the sub 4" pistols?...
Only if you consider the 9mm a realistic choice.

Kevin

Chocolate Bayou
March 25, 2015, 10:10 PM
i have a Colt Defender sitting right in front of me and it has no rail or the STI Guardian (3.96"Barrel) is defintely worth consideration. I conceal carry my Defender IWB and it is great. I generally shoot WWB at range and run at least 1 mag of Crictical Duty on every trip.

justin22885
March 25, 2015, 11:58 PM
i have no issues with 9mm, im not someone who looks at the size of the two and assume the bigger one is more powerful because im intelligent enough to know the 45acp is incredibly low pressured by comparison so its not nearly as powerful as its size may suggest,the two are pretty evenly matched for kinetic energy, i like and prefer 45acp for reasons outside of this though, i like it for how much better it performs when suppressed, and the fact i can chop old, damaged 308 brass down for more 45acp ammo, i find it recoils a big smoother and isnt as snappy as other calibers.. and would love to make a double-stack commander size 1911 with an under barrel rail as a "duty pistol" or for open carry

however, i look at it this way, some of the lightest, most concealable concealed carry pieces are blowback 380s, you know, compact little things like the bersa thunder, walther PPK, and all those eastern european copies (CZ82 being my favorite blowback)... compare these to the bersa thunder UC pro in 45acp and the UC pro 45 ACP is the same length, the same height, only about 1/8" wider, and about the same ammunition capacity.. so the UC pro 45 is a major upgrade to the 380s without really adding any extra bulk, weight, or losing capacity

so when i compare it that way and not to full size, double stack 9mms (even the really compact 9mms seem to be single stack and only 10 rounds), theres not that much of a dropoff.. so i think thats the pistol im going to go with, i dont feel i need to really compare the two side by side, the bersa thunder 45 UC pro is much better suited for CC than the cougar, so thats the one im going to go with

so.. verdict, my concealed carry pistol will be the bersa thunder 45 UC pro

voicomp
May 15, 2015, 11:27 PM
At a point in time when I was thinking with much less wisdom, I sold two Star Firestar .45's and accessories, including 10 round mags

jeepnik
May 16, 2015, 01:24 PM
I'll pass on a 1911 with a barrel shorter than 4.25". The issues grows larger with barrel lengths less than 4.25".
Other than possible failure to expand at the lower velocities from a sub 4" barrel, what issue "grow large". Curious because I've never experienced any in a properly set up handgun.

bumbazine
May 16, 2015, 01:58 PM
I just noticed this thread so I'm late to the party, sorry. I used to own a Bersa UC45. It ran great and I liked it a lot, but the grip wais thick and kinda square and pounded my arthritic old thumb joint, so I eventually sold it.
All I'm saying is, the grip might not work for you. Fondle one with that thought in mind before you buy.
Otherwise, they are great, underappreciated guns.

MR835
May 16, 2015, 09:01 PM
W 45

Redstate
May 17, 2015, 12:19 AM
I had the EAA compact witness for a while and liked it...

http://eaacorp.com/portfolio-item/witness-steel-compact/

Redstate
May 17, 2015, 12:21 AM
I had the EAA compact witness for a while and liked it... Steel... 8+1, 3.6" barrel

http://eaacorp.com/portfolio-item/witness-steel-compact/

wizard1911
June 6, 2015, 06:46 PM
I got a Colt Defender a month ago. Can't say enough good things about it. Easy to conceal, 500+ rounds and not one problem and very accurate. IMHO best 1911 style compact 45

B2Tall
June 7, 2015, 02:55 PM
A couple of years ago I picked up a lightly used Citadel (i.e. ARMSCOR) 3.5" 1911. Great little gun that's very budget-friendly. I've got over 1k rounds down the pipe without an issue and I CC it on occasion.

BlindJustice
June 7, 2015, 03:22 PM
In the 1911 WOrld

Full size = 5" bbl. Full size frame
Compact = 4.25" Bbl. full size frame aka Commander
-or CCO = Combat Carry Officers
4.25" Bbl. on Officers frame 3?4" shorter in height
Sub Compact - 3"-3.5" Officers frame


My EDC is the Springfield Officers ( .45 ACP )
Range Officer Compact 4" Bbl. & Officers frame
It's been faultless out of the box.

If I were to consider something with a sorter Bbl.
len. a Colt Defender in 9x19 is appealing.

R-

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