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Offline Graybeard

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BY TOM MCHALE            JUNE 2, 2018

If you want a much more affordable version of the famous FBI contract gun, check out the Springfield Armory 1911 TRP.


The Springfield Armory 1911 TRP (Tactical Response Pistol) is more or less a production version of the custom pistol demanded by the FBI. The model that won the 5,000 pistol contract back in 1988 had to meet stringent performance requirements like 2,500 rounds without stoppage and 1.5-inch groups from 25 yards with service ammunition. To make those things happen, the guns were built in Springfield Armoryís Custom Shop. Anytime you start hand fitting parts, the cost is going to go up Ė way up.

The TRP is a production gun with many of the same features. While itís certainly not cheap with an MSRP of $1,646, itís still a solid deal considering the weapon you get. Most everything in it is National Match grade including the forged frame, barrel, bushing, and two-piece guide rod for starters.

The 1911 TRP is full of ďsmall detailĒ upgrades like ambidextrous safety levers, quality checkering, enlarged ejection port and more.

The grip panels are made from near-indestructible G10, and if you are observant, youíll notice sharper checkering on the front of the grip than on the back. Thatís just a nice touch that provides positive grip without tearing up your hands. The magazine well is enlarged and generously beveled, and safety levers are present on both sides of the frame. The TRP is finished with Tritium night sights.

It ships with two seven-round magazines outfitted with slam pads. The first thing youíll want to do is buy more. Hey, single-stack magazines are thin, so itís easy to carry a few.

It has a combat trigger, so the weight is exactly five pounds. It has a short and smooth take-up with a crisp break, so the weight feels less than it measures.

So What?

All of that sounds nice, but the real value is in the feel and resulting performance. This gun is slick. If you appreciate the handling of a nice car versus that of an AMC Gremlin, this gun is for you. Youíre not paying for a bullet that goes mostly forward. Youíre paying for flawless fit and function because that means reliability and accuracy. Iíve had the one shown here since June of 2012 (as you can probably tell by the holster wear) and Iím still waiting for the first malfunction.

Out of the box, the TRP comes with excellent G10 grips.

Accuracy is excellent as is point of impact alignment with the fixed combat sights. Even with my aging eyes, it easily shoots 1.75 to 2.5-inch groups with production ammo when measuring 25-yard, five-shot groups. Groups stay well within that diameter range with Barnes TAC-XPD 160-grain, Remington Ultimate Defense 230-grain, Sig Sauer FMJ and V-Crown, and Federal HST.

The two-piece guide rod is a sticking point for some, but Iíve never found it to be an issue worthy of my concern. Removing that for field stripping adds a few seconds to the process, so itís not been a hindrance for me. If you donít care for that design, itís easy enough to swap out.

Tom McHale is a committed learning junkie always seeking a new subject victim. As a lifelong student of whatever grabs his attention on any particular day, he thrives on beating rabbit trails into submission. In between his time as a high-tech marketing executive, restaurant owner, and hamster cosmetology practitioner, heís published seven books and nearly 1,500 articles about guns, shooting, and the American way.

Bill aka the Graybeard
President, Graybeard Outdoor Enterprises

I am not a lawyer and do not give legal advice.

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