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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
OK, after reading some more, I'm thinking more and more about a slightly larger Kimber. I had pretty much decided on a Compact. Figuring a 4" barrel would be better to shoot than a 3" and it still was the Officers frame so I could use my existing accessories, namely my 4 Wilson Combat 47 OX mags. But some have been saying that size is not great for range time. I take my guns to the range once a week if not more sometimes. I generally put 100rds through my Sig 226, 50-100rds through my RIA Officers and around 200 through my M4. I don't want a gun to just sit in a holster.

So now my question is, should I keep my RIA Officers for a CCW weapon and maybe buy a Kimber with a shorter barrel but a full sized frame. Living in AZ during the summer months the Officers size definately has its advantages, but I could wear a 4" barrel on a full frame during the other months with just a light jacket or over shirt. The Sig 226 is a lot big for light clothes CCW and a little big for heavier clothes.

Also, a slightly larger model would offer me some more options.

I could use some help here.
 

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I really like my 4in barrel 1911 for all around carry versus my 5 in barrel. The little bit of accuracy difference I can wring out of my pistols is really not enough to want to carry the 5in all the time. of course I am carring the 5in until I get the dreaded Kimber External Extractor problem worked with the 4in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
1911-Newbie question here...

A 1911 "Commander's" model (what Kimber calls a Pro, right?) is a 4" barrel with a full sized frame and grip?
 

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A 1911 "Commander's" model (what Kimber calls a Pro, right?) is a 4" barrel with a full sized frame and grip?

That's "basically" correct: The Colt Commander has a 4.25" barrel, the Springfield Champion (Kimber Pro as well I suppose) has a 4.00" barrel. Regardless, both accept the fullsize/Government mags, grips, etc. Hope that helps.
Mac
 

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Yes, correct...

The Kimber Pro series are FULL size frames and grips with a 4" barrel. The Compacts are Officer's grip with 4" barrel. The Ultras have a 3" barrel and Officer's grip.

IMHO it is not difficult to conceal a FULL size grip with the proper IWB holster and some sort of cover; loose shirt, vest, or jacket. I don't see much difference in the proper IWB carry setup.

The issue regarding a 5" versus 4" barrel is mostly related to sitting. Standing (for most folks) there isn't much difference, but there certainly is sitting as the 5" is a problem for IWB carry for most folks.

I carry a Pro CDP in a Rosen ARG with a Rosen 1.5" belt and it is so comfortable that I forget it's there (standing or sitting). I'm serious, sometimes I think maybe I forgot to put it on and have to go somewhere to feel and see if it's there. Of course, the light weight makes a difference too.

BTW, I have an EXTERNAL extractor on my Pro CDP and it has been flawless with several different types of ammo.
 

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Good size for carry and range...

Unforgivien, I have to ask: If you practice that much at the range, why wouldn't you practice with what you actually carry? You say you "don't want a gun just to sit in a holster", so why not shoot the carry gun -- a lot? After all, that's the one you're (potentially) staking your life on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Slapshot,

I do intend to shoot the CCW gun at the range, just not as much if can damage the gun. Essentially I want a 1911 that can take the weekly "abuse" without having to worry about damaging it.

I obviously want to be profecient with the gun, but as you all who own multiple guns I'm sure agree, you end up shooting one more than any other. Also, as so many have stated here, from what I understand, an Officer's size is not really meant for that much range use.

The smaller gun will be practiced with, just not taken out as often for fun shooting. And I meant I don't want a $1000 Kimber to just sit in a holster. I don't so much mind my $300 RIA sitting in it and only being taken out once a month.
 

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It would seem to me that the gun you carry is the one you would practice with the most. I shoot my carry gun at least 200 rds a week at the range. It's a SA Ultra Compact (3.5" barrel) and I'm approaching 6000 rds through the gun. It's not the most accurate gun I own but it's certainly the gun I shoot the best. It certainly is no worse for the wear.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hmm, hearing a lot of differing opinons on what an officer's will handle.

Let me clarify a couple things. I don't have a CCW right now. Class is in 2 weeks. I will not be carrying all the time. Mainly because I can not even have it on my office's property. This will be for road trips in the car, bad areas of town and when I ride my Harley. During the summer I will be carrying the Officer's. In the cooler months when I can wear a overshirt, sweatshirt or jacket, it will be the Kimber Pro.
 

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I like to shoot my 3", 4" and 5" 1911's about the same. They're all fun at the range. However, if it gets serious, aka friendly competition amung friends, I always go for the 5" Kimber. It's by far the most accurate and most fun of all my 1911's.

For carrying, the 5" is my least favorite as it's the biggest and heaviest. the 3" and 4" lightweights are much more fun in the carry role.
 

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3,4 or 5 inch???

Since no custom high end gun manufacturer produced a 3 incher for general market consumption one has to assume they could be problematic due to the lack of slide mass and slide velocity generated by full house 45's, lets put that aside for the moment. The differences between a 4 or 5 inch on the Government frame where concealability is concerned is negligeable since the extra 1 inch goes down when carrying. To discuss "when sitting" is splitting hairs, try behind the hip, strong side, Butt OUT. When you consider that the 45 was specifically designed for a 5 inch barrel and the velocity drop off when the barrel legnth is lowered to 3 inch is so drastic. The only real concealability issue seems to be the officers frames size compared to the full size. If you can get a good grip on the officers grip, use it. For general accuracy, reliability and transerence of deliverable energy may I suggest the full size any time, IMHO.
 

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Since you're in AZ, I would encourage you to go up to Gunsite (Paulden/Prescott area) and handle a Colt Gunsite CCO. It has an aluminum Officers ACP frame and the true Commander 4.25" bbl. upper, Novak sights, S&A high-ride grip safety, Wilson thumb safety, Novak rear and Heinie front dovetailed sight, beveled magazine well, front strap serrated 20lpi, and has been dehorned for carry. Gunsite sells them for $1250, and while they can be had via the net for about $100 less, Cory Trapp at the Gunsite gunsmithy goes through the ones they sell to make sure all is well.

I would ditch the RIA, buy the CCO for a full-time carry piece, and get a 5" Colt 1911 for a range , practice, and IDPA/IPSC gun.

Regards,
Andy
 

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Andy said:
Since you're in AZ, I would encourage you to go up to Gunsite (Paulden/Prescott area) and handle a Colt Gunsite CCO. It has an aluminum Officers ACP frame and the true Commander 4.25" bbl. upper, Novak sights, S&A high-ride grip safety, Wilson thumb safety, Novak rear and Heinie front dovetailed sight, beveled magazine well, front strap serrated 20lpi, and has been dehorned for carry. Gunsite sells them for $1250, and while they can be had via the net for about $100 less, Cory Trapp at the Gunsite gunsmithy goes through the ones they sell to make sure all is well.

I would ditch the RIA, buy the CCO for a full-time carry piece, and get a 5" Colt 1911 for a range , practice, and IDPA/IPSC gun.

Regards,
Andy
Sounds like a plan Brian. You'll get the bug even worse after a road trip to Gunsite :biglaugh: . Ask Cory while you're there if they (Gunsite) will give you minor service without your having to send the gun back to Colt . I would buy one myself under those circumstances...Tom
 

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I have a Kimber Compact SS/Aluminum I which I carry and use at the range regularly. I don't see any wear and tear other than a rub mark on the aluminum frame from the thumb safety movement. I use +P ammo to test my carry ammo as well as standard ammo. I can't see why you can't shoot a gun like this comfortably at the range and get plenty of mileage out of it...

H
 

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I really like my Kimber Compact. The honeymoon was bumpy, but it is now my favorite pistol. I find the size perfect. I shoot a couple MecGar (OEM) 7 rounders and those are what I keep in the gun. My reloads are CMC 8 rounders with bumper pads. It is my big CCW gun and doesn't get a lot of use because of where I work and what I wear on the weekends. I intend to use this pistol in my clubs Action Pistol meets. Yes my fullsize would be easier, but my Kimber is my goto gun.
 

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i personally feel a glock 23 is the PERFECT ccw pistol- i shoot alot live in AZ and ccw and i leave my 6 1911's in the safe (springer micro-springer trp op-size range wise) i carry a 23-personal choice. now if you are going to carry a 1911 for ccw conventional wisdom says dont go smaller than a 4" gun
generally decent advice but having spent time as gunstore flunky (Bear Arms)
i have seen sub 4" 1911's that didnt work from the getgo regardless of mfgr
and i have seen many more that never miss a beat AS LONG as you maintain the pistol and change out the recoil springs at about 1000rds.

good luck

aj
 

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unforgiven5150 said:
Thinking more and more about a slightly larger Kimber. Living in AZ during the summer months the Officers size definately has its advantages. A slightly larger model would offer me some more options.

I could use some help here.
3
Of course, you know Arizona is an "open carry" state and you can carry anything you please in the open as long as it is loaded. I live in AZ also and carry a full size Govt model Kimber Classic II and it is quite comfortable, even in the car. It is also my primary shooter. I carry a BPTen (second most shot gun). I carry an Ultra (internal extractor version) for concealed (the "opera", etc.). Think about a full size. It ain't all that bad. PLus, as has been stated, you can shoot the livin' heck outta it and won't bother it a bit. I like to carry what I am comfortable shooting too. Sure is comforting to feel the same ol' gun in your hand when you really need that reliability (you and the gun)!
 
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