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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an stainless Springfield LW Compact. It is an older gun, and raises an interesting question. It is Commander sized, a full sized frame with a shorter barrel, which according to Springfields website, would actually make it a Champion, wouldn't it? The slide in marked 'Compact", and while none of this really makes a difference to me, makes me curious. Is this a compact or a Champion? ==Bob
 

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I'm not all that familiar with the older SA's, but you say it is commander sized? Is that to say it has a 4.25" bbl? I think they made a true commander sized pistol at one time. Maybe that's what the compact was then. Of course, today it means an officer's frame and a 4"bbl. The champion is the same, but with a full size frame.

Call SA with the serial # to get the poop on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Springfields already researching my S/N, we believe this is an early Custom Shop gun. Perhaps one of the first ones. This pistol just get more interesting as time goes on. ==Bob
 

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I was told that my Compact circa 1994 has a Commander frame combined with an Officer's grip. It has a 4" barrel. The closest thing on SA's website is the Custom Loaded Compact. I was told by SA that mine is known as the 45 Mil-Spec Compact, model PB9501.

HTH
 

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That sounds right. My micro was a "mil-spec" too. But yeah, officer frame w/ 4" bbl is the compact. I absolutely love mine. It's a new one (I had to wait for it to be made) and I have less than 200 rounds through it, but I am really impressed thus far.
 

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Careful with the officer frame thing... They told me that the frame is NOT an officer's. It's like it is a meld between the Commander and Officer frame... Officer in the back, Commander in the front. My gunsmith more or less confirmed this. So be careful when buying aftermarket parts!

Pourboy, A Champion would have the 7 round SA magazines and <I believe> would take standard 1911 grips. The Compacts take Officer size grips and 6 round SA magazines. Check the size of your grips and you should be able to tell, but I'd guess that what you have ISN'T a Champion.

I was looking at the Champions, but I couldn't see the sense in getting a shorter barrel with the bigger grip, when for CCW the grip is what you generally have to worry about concealing.
 

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I was looking at the Champions, but I couldn't see the sense in getting a shorter barrel with the bigger grip, when for CCW the grip is what you generally have to worry about concealing.
Right...that's exactly why I think it's the best size (at least for someone my size, who has a harder time concealing a big gun).
 

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Diggler:

I don't understand what you mean by "Officer in the back, Commander in the front. " Can you explain further?

Thanks
 

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From what I took from SA support and my gunsmith, the Compact isn't a Commander frame or Officer's frame. It's more like a combination of the two. In the front (slide, barrel, rail, etc) it's more of the Commander frame, parts-wise, with a 4 inch barrel. In the back, the magazine well, grips etc. it's more like the Officer model and the Officer's grips and magazine will fit. Where they are combined I don't know, or even if it's neither one but somewhere between the two.

I'm far from an authority on even MY gun, but this is what I've come up with from SA and my gunsmith while looking for parts for the gun.
 

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There are plenty of forumites that, I'm sure, have at least one of each of the guns we're talking about. Maybe one of those people will weigh in.

I'm far from an authority either, but I can't say that I've ever heard of a commander/officer "hybrid frame". The only thing I could see being different is maybe the length of the dust cover.?
 

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SA told me that it is NOT an officers frame. My guess is that it's not REALLY either one or both, just a frame they have with these dimensions. Like, 'Let's make a gun, with a frame like a commander, but has a shorter grip like the officer's and a shorter 4" barrel. Let's make sure that the grips and magazines from the officers fit, so that the owners won't have any trouble finding aftermarket parts.'

Not really bound to one of the other, but trying to use as many parts as they can between the two so there aren't too many parts strictly unique to the compact. Maybe that's the case?
 

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Hopefully this clears things up... you can also check on Springfield's website and they break it down pretty clearly.

Fullsize:
- 5" bbl/slide
- Full-size frame (frame/grip... same thing)

Champion:
-3.9" bbl/slide
- Full-size frame

Compact:
-3.9" bbl/slide
- Officer's frame (it has a shorter grip/takes shorter mags)

Ultra Compact:
-3.5" bbl/slide
- Officer's frame

Micro Compact:
-3.0" bb/slide
-Officer's frame

.... you get the idea. Springfield doesn't make a "true" Commander sized pistol which have a 4.25" bbl and full-size frame.

hope this helps.
shimbii
 

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Oh yeah... an "officer's" size refers to the colt officer's sized pistol which I believe have a shortened grip and 3.5" barrel. This would be comparable to Springfield's Ultra sized pistols.

Diggler - you may be confusing an Officer's size slide to the compact slide which are not the same.

shimbii
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, guys. How about a full sized, alloy frame, with a 4.3 in barrel? Left side of the slide is marked "COMPACT
CAL .45"

The plot thickens... ==Bob
 

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Diggler:

Thanks for the response. I misunderstood what you meant by front and back ... I was thinking you meant front strap and back strap.

Yes, you are right, it is somewhat of a hybrid frame, with an Officer's sized grip frame and a dust cover / slide rail similar to that of a Commander sized frame.

Nonetheless, the compact is a great size for CCW .... the ideal size, in my opinion.
 

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pourboy,

What size grips/magazine does it take? If they're full size it sure does sound like a Champion with a Compact slide.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Verrrrry interesting..... I got my reply back from Springfield today. My serial number was sold as a bare frame, in 1995. No other information is available. As mentioned before, it is a full-sized frame with a Springfield Compact slide. Novak sights, a rather well fitted coned bushing barrel (Wilson?) Wilson ambi safety, Ed Brown? trigger, and a beavertail I cannot readily identify. This is gonna drive me nuts, the pistol was a full, custom job. I wish I had a digital camera, I'd post pictures. ==Bob
 
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