Compact and sub-compact 1911's flawed inherently?

This is a discussion on Compact and sub-compact 1911's flawed inherently? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; This all started in my IDPA club as I went out to purchase a new gun about 18 months ago. First I wanted a ParaOrdnance ...

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Thread: Compact and sub-compact 1911's flawed inherently?

  1. #1
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    Compact and sub-compact 1911's flawed inherently?

    This all started in my IDPA club as I went out to purchase a new gun about 18 months ago. First I wanted a ParaOrdnance P10 or P12 and was told not to do this by many of the master competitors including a highly decorated SWAT cop. The contention was that when the barrel lengths shrink below 4 inches the 1911 design becomes inherently flawed. I went my own way, trusting some very good articles read in various magazines and lo, discovered my buddies were 100% correct. At least as far as the P10 was concerned. I tried a buddies P12 at a match one time and suddenly found a whole host of similar problems which were duplicated when other club members tried the gun to see if maybe I was suffering from the notorious "limp wrist" problem. My shooting style was rigorously inspected as I ran a course of fire by my fellow NRA INstructors and IDPA Safety Officers. No deficiencies in technique. I should hope NOT!

    THEN I went and bought a Springfield Armory "micro" 1911 and found it had a bad extractor, which I replaced all to no avail. I had continuous problems with failure to extract as well as the ever present double feeds. I got rid of it and settled on the Sig Sauer P245. No complaints since. Not one. I can compete with the P245. It's barrel is 3.9 inches. Four inches for all intents and purposes.

    I wrote COL Jeff Cooper a letter and received a hand signed reply from him in which he allowed that he has heard a number of complaints about the mini 1911's and indeed he made that subject the lead topic in his most recent "Cooper's Corner" column in Guns & Ammo magazine. I'll never own a 1911 that has a barrel less than 4 inches ever again. I would consider a Kimber compact since that seems to have a Commander sized slide but an Officers sized grip.

    However, I'm still examining designs other than 1911 in .45ACP such as the Beretta 8045 and the CZ/EAA models. However, I'm so happy with the P245, that my next purchase is going to be Big Brother P220. I already have five 8 rd P220 mags since they work in the P245 as well.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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  3. #2
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    I heard the same stories and heard some of them from people that had first hand experience with them. I wanted one so bad I could taste it but have since learned that an inch or two longer in a 1911 really doesn't hurt the ability to conceal it much, if any. Although I have a 4" and a 5", I carry the 5" almost exclusively and will continue to do so. In fact I am planning on selling my 4" and getting a second 5" 1911.
    Bumper
    Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde; Beware the anger of a patient man.

  4. #3
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    My wife's Combat Commander 45 is just perfect. I've fired thousands of rounds and NEVER had any problems. But never again will I go smaller than a Commander. At least as far as the 1911 goes!
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    I've got both weapons, a Para P10 stainless which functions flawlessly, and a Springfield Armory Ultra Compact V10 which eats everything I put through it. I had some concerns about the Para P10 at first, but after polishing the feed ramp, and tweeking the extractor to throw the brass high and to the right, I have never had trouble with it. I do know that using the lighter bullet weight tends to make the P10 more accurate. I've also has a Kimber custom compact that worked VERY well, but I decided to opt out of it, due to the need to replace the springs after about 5000 rounds. I've got a few Colt's, ranging from the Officers' to the older series 70 Commanders, in 45, 38 Super and 9MM in a Light weight Commander..I think it's a matter of what you feel most comfortable with, and working with it.

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    When I was in the business (retired in 98) most that I sold had problems. Both a Colt and a SA went back, one twice. I quit selling them. We never had problems with the Commander length guns.

    Have seen and heard of similar problems with the Short Glocks in 45.
    Keep the shotgun handy!!

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    Hummmmmmm

    Well, I had an early DETONICS that was function flawless & an early (first year of production) Colt Light Weight Officers Model that functioned perfectly also.

    I'm giving away my age here....when I say that most of the VERY EARLY super chopped & tuned custom Colts worked really well. They were "made up" by some custom gunsmiths. Some of them were REALLY short.
    They go back to the days when there were NO stubby .45s to buy.
    A full size Govt. model was just custom cut down. The slide & barrel were chopped ~ special barrel bushing made & recoil spring plug etc.
    The pistol butt was cut and full size magazines were also cut short & their bases welded back on.
    So...it's possible for a short .45 to work properly but, everything is more critical concerning fit & finish.
    I would say that the modern shortened virgins...I mean versions...suffer from quality control, mass production, and/or design problems more than any inherent size related problems.
    Of course that's just my opinion.
    It seems to me though that if some older short .45s have already proved themselves to work properly then there should be no reason why the modern firearms should not work also ~ if they are assembled with care and maybe actually factory function tested.

    The ParaOrd & the Springer Micro I know absolutely nothing about.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KC135
    Have seen and heard of similar problems with the Short Glocks in 45.
    Now THAT'S interesting! I have owned a Glock M30 and was sorry I ever sold it. I think that if I could only own ONE gun that I had to depend on for survival, that'd be the one.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    I too, remember the Detonics. Even fired one. I think it is possible for the custom shops to turn out a quality product like THIS one: http://www.cylinder-slide.com/ultimate45.shtml I think I'd pay for this example.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    I know...I said something DIFFERENT in post #3! I go back and forth on just this little gun.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

  11. #10
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    It seems I am definitely in the minority here. My Seecamp DA Detonics Combat Master is still going strong after more than twenty years. A reliable compact 1911 .45 may be rare - but they do exist. Still - I dread to think what it would cost to produce one these days.
    If you want to make God laugh - tell Him your plans. Yiddish proverb

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    Good 1911's are hard to find a very expensive. The size of the shell and the short nature of the brass makes it a hard shell to leverage. My 1911 average $2000 and are flawless. My most expensive is $4k and is being built as we type. I consider this inexpensive for a carry gun that is protecting me and my loved ones.

    I agree with Bumper I've found the Commanders to be to short barreled where the 5" and 6 " give a much better burn and improves accuracy dramatically. I have yet to fire a sub 4" that I found worthy of carry.

    Ballistically I love the .45 and would not trade for love or money.

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by revlar
    My Seecamp DA Detonics Combat Master is still going strong after more than twenty years. A reliable compact 1911 .45 may be rare - but they do exist. Still - I dread to think what it would cost to produce one these days.
    Exactly my point. Your example is a lucky aberration and not the norm.

    How long has it been since Detonics was in production? Also it never really qualified as being full production, more like semicustom. And I think it wasn't Seecamp that they worked with but rather DEVEL. Devel also worked on their own, specializing in chopping S&W 9mm's and installing a see-thru grip and a unique oval trigger guard.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nighthawk
    I agree with Bumper I've found the Commanders to be to short barreled where the 5" and 6" give a much better burn and improves accuracy dramatically. I have yet to fire a sub 4" that I found worthy of carry.

    Ballistically I love the .45 and would not trade for love or money.
    I would probably balk at a 6" for concealed carry. I think 5" is optimum with a 4" being pretty good as well. There's enough evidence (whether 100% accurate or not) to convince me not to carry a sub 4". But that's probably just me
    Bumper
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    I noticed at the SHOT SHOW that Detonics is back in business.
    Now called the New Detonics Corp.
    They had some nice looking guns, I'm not sure if they are as reliable as the old ones were, but they are talking a good game.

    I had a MK VI back in the 1980's and it performed extremely well, I wish I still had it.

    However basically I agree with the concept of the 4" being the best of both worlds.

    Like Bumper I carry only 4 or 5" 1911's
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    Detonics Usa

    DETONICSUSA IS indeed back in business & Jerry Ahern is President
    Let me find you'all a link.

    DETONICSUSA LINK Click Here
    Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ

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