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It finally sank in that summer is over, we're getting into fall, and before long, I'm going to have a lot of time to sit on my can twiddling my thumbs (I'm not a winter sports person). I normally have the bulk of my reloading done by mid January, so I normally do a gun project each year.

In the past, I've fitting my M1A out with all USGI parts, restored a Remington Model 8 in 35 Reminton to functioning, and last year I built up a .257 Roberts bolt action sporter from a Mauser action. So, now I'm looking for this years project and I've got the itch to work on a 1911.

Presently, I have an early Springfield Armory Micro Compact. A friend of mine bought it, found out it was only reliable for about 4 magazines worth of FMJ ammo before it would start to jam from fouling. He was going to trade it in on something else, but found out he'd take a complete bath on the cost. I bought it from him for $50 over what the dealer offered him and figured I might be able to play with it a bit and make it run. I never quite got around to that, but now I'm getting the itch for a new 1911. Presently, I own a full sized Colt Series 70, as well as a Para Ordnance CCW LDA. What I'd like, is a standard single action 1911 with a Commander length slide on an Officer's size frame for the occasional carry outing.

Now keep in mind the previous projects I've completed, and the fact that I'm able to disassemble a 1911 down to pins and screws.

So, my questions are:

Would I have the skill to complete such a build without running to a gunsmith (Nearest decent 1911 smith is now about 6 hours away)?

Is the original SA Micro Compact a true Officer's Model frame, or was it shortened further in the front, AND would a Commander slide fit this frame?

If those two answers are YES, then suggestions on parts to use would be welcome. I'm not looking for a match accurate pistol, I'm looking to build a reliable and inexpensive 1911. No frills. No flash. Think of a WW2 GI pistol. It ain't pretty, but it gets the job done reliably. Doesn't have to feed anything besides 230gr. FMJ ammo.

So what's the consensus here? Is this do-able or should I drop back 10 and punt?
 

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MarineTech said:
Is the original SA Micro Compact a true Officer's Model frame, or was it shortened further in the front, AND would a Commander slide fit this frame?
I believe the Micro is a 3" barrel, while the Officer's was a 3.5". If I'm wrong, I'm sure someone will correct me. :cool:
 

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The dust cover on the OM frame is ,IIRC, about 1/4-5/16 shorter than the Gov't one. You might compare that Micro with your GM. You might do a search in the SA forum below, this Q rings a bell.
I would think a used Colt top end would go on without a lot of fitting. Essex and Caspian for new slides. If it's a little tight, lapping it in is easy.
Have EGW make you a bbl. bushing to the .001" standard and I bet you get more than GI accuracy.
I love the CCO size guns and think this a worthy project.
 

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My ultra compact, which shares a frame with your micro, from SA was incompatible with standard commander or officer's slides. As stated above, the dust cover is 1/4" shorter than the normal commander/officer's length. SA uses their own spec there. You'll either have to go to SA for a slide for this project, of see if someone like Caspian can make one to work with it.

I thought I was going to put a 4.25" upper on my Ultra Compact. Didn't work because of the dust cover difference. Ended up buying a caspian frame and am almost done with a regular commander style pistol.

Brian
 
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