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Old 03-24-2016, 02:42 AM   #1
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Colt's Commanders...Revisited

Gents,

A number of years ago I started a thread about the Commander pistol and was amazed at the outpouring of support and love for the abbreviated Colt 1911. In the ensuing years I've had one encounter "in extremis" where I had to draw my Colt. Luckily, four opponents stood down and no shots were fired. A very welcome and lucky outcome. It could have gone either way.

I'll be honest. I did stray into the world of Sigs and still own several. If I didn't carry a 1911 I'd carry the Sig. I feel that strongly about the Sig. Still, I went back to the Colt Commander sized guns and have been more than happy with that choice.

Why? Well, the Commander is ALL it's cracked up to be and has all the attributes we discussed, at length, in that old article. Nothing handles and functions as well as the 19ll Commander in .45 ACP. There in may line the true reason for the Colts popularity. A ergonomically sound platform married to what may be the finest self defense cartridge ever designed.

Does this make me a dinosaur? Probably, but it's a label I'll proudly wear...as long as I can wear it with my 1911 Commander.

Your thoughts are solicited.

Wes



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Old 03-24-2016, 07:31 AM   #2
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I've wondered about the 1/2" shorter barrel---does that really make a difference when concealed? I've always thought the length of the grip/magazine was more of an issue with CC.
Btw, in CA, only the steel Colt Commander in .45 is on the infamous DOJ "Roster" the Colt Government Model was dropped so no longer legal to buy new.
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Old 03-24-2016, 07:34 AM   #3
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I waited somewhat impatiently for this pistol in stainless. There was a substantial delay from the introduction of the OACP and the GM to the release of the CC. I still have the pistol while others have come and gone. Will try and get a picture up later.
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Old 03-24-2016, 09:17 AM   #4
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...have carried a Commander in .38 Super everyday since 1980...I am on my second one...not that the first one wore out but I had a nice all hard chrome one made up and the original gun is just resting...

Both made in 1952...like me...

Bob

1980-2007



2007-on right now...


Last edited by RJM52; 03-24-2016 at 09:27 AM.
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Old 03-24-2016, 10:25 AM   #5
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Combat Commander in stainless:




Glad someone opened this up to Super! Who was that masked man?

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Old 03-24-2016, 12:43 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RJM52 View Post
...have carried a Commander in .38 Super everyday since 1980...I am on my second one...not that the first one wore out but I had a nice all hard chrome one made up and the original gun is just resting...

Both made in 1952...like me...

Bob

1980-2007



2007-on right now...

Beautiful.
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"Of every one hundred men they send me, ten shouldn't even be here. Eighty of them are nothing but targets, nine of them are real fighters - we are lucky to have them, they make the battle. Ahhhh but the one. One of them is a warrior and he will bring the others home."

Heraclitis, 500 BC.
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Old 03-24-2016, 12:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Joseph View Post
I've wondered about the 1/2" shorter barrel---does that really make a difference when concealed? I've always thought the length of the grip/magazine was more of an issue with CC.
Btw, in CA, only the steel Colt Commander in .45 is on the infamous DOJ "Roster" the Colt Government Model was dropped so no longer legal to buy new.
It's actually 3/4's of an inch, but I've never found it to make much of a meaningful difference in terms of concealed carry. However, it does place the guns balance point farther back and makes the Commander feel a lot smaller than it really is. I carried a Commander for five or six years and never had a problem with it, it's the only 1911 variant I'd consider carrying other than a full size five inch gun. I went back to a Govt. Model simply because I prefer the recoil impulse of a five inch gun, but there's absolutely nothing wrong with a Commander.
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"Of every one hundred men they send me, ten shouldn't even be here. Eighty of them are nothing but targets, nine of them are real fighters - we are lucky to have them, they make the battle. Ahhhh but the one. One of them is a warrior and he will bring the others home."

Heraclitis, 500 BC.
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Old 03-24-2016, 12:56 PM   #8
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I purchased my first Colt Commander in 1971-72. I still have it, with no plans to ever let it go. It is the LW Model in 45ACP. For many years I could shoot hardball ammo through it with no problems. Eventually, arthritis in my hands and wrists started showing up. The hardball rounds in the LW model started to hurt!! I didn't want to give up shooting it, so I developed some range loads that are more "arthritis friendly" and I can shoot 75-100 rounds of this ammo without pain.

Over the years, I installed a long trigger, an extended thumb safety, and a beavertail grip safety. Now, it is perfect for me. I have carried it many times as a CCW. Perhaps, I am also a dinosaur!!
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Old 03-24-2016, 05:53 PM   #9
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Gents,

Thanks for your comments. I didn't mean to dis the .38 Super, but for me the 1911 has always meant .45 ACP. This is probably because I've never owned a Super.

Chuntaro, your a .38 Super guy. What year/model should I look for if I want a .38 Super 1911? I'm leaning toward the Commander.

I have both Commanders and Combat Commanders (aluminum frame and stainless steel) and like both. If I'm traveling or going to be out and about I generally opt for the Commander due to it's light weight. It gives up nothing in handling and is very comfortable to wear over the long haul.

As an aside, having good custom holsters makes wearing the Commander easy. To many people "cheap Charlie" their holsters and pay the piper with unsafe or uncomfortable carry.

Wes



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Old 03-24-2016, 08:40 PM   #10
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I would look for first year to 71 in a Commander. If you want to save $$$, a new Lt Weight 9mm will be out supposedly in a few weeks. MSRP is going to be about 900 but they will be priced around 800 at competitive dealers. Install a barrel, cut back the ejector to eject live rounds and you will be set. The new guns, even alloy framed have lifetime warranties. A decent pre-80 series in commander or combat commander seems to start around 1200 and go up.
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