Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Super Mondo Mega Comparo Redux...

When I posted the first Super Mondo Mega Comparo, a number of folks rightfully pointed out that the comparison wasn't particularly valid or useful - a sub-compact Glock really isn't a fair comparison to a full size 1911. So in the interest of bringing my faithful (and nitpicky) readers a more fitting comparison, I procured (at tremendous expense to myself I might add*) a compact 1911... OBVIOUSLY, a rematch is in order...

G30 Weight

33.5 ounces. Not the most svelte carry gun out there, but just a hair over 2 pounds. Please note that the weight includes 10 rounds of .45 ACP.

Colt 1991A1 Weight

Very close to 38 ounces. Yes, I know there are lighter compact 1911s out there - Kimber's CDP II weighs in at 25 ounces empty - but you run what you brung. Plus, this weight includes a Chip McCormack stainless mag and 8 rounds of .45 ACP.

1991-G30 Overlay

Not a particularly scientific measurement by any means, but I found it instructive. The difference in the grip size is particularly apparent here - the backstraps are even in this shot! The 1991A1 is a touch shorter, but appreciably taller.

1991 vs. G30 Length

The 1991A1 is shorter than the G30, although not by any significant amount.

1991 vs. G30 Height

The G30 wins this matchup by a good half-inch or more.

1991 vs. G30 Width

At first blush, the 1991A1 is a good bit thinner than the G30 - right up until you compare factory grips. Now, granted, there are several different slimmer grips out there for the 1991, which is certainly one strength of the 1911 platform.

1991 vs. G30 Ammo Capacity

Only two rounds difference between the two - the 1991A1's single-stack magazine holds 7 rounds to the 9 in the G30's double-stack magazine. Both pistols accept their larger-framed brethren's magazines, meaning that the G30 can take a 13 round magazine (up to 15 with extension) and the 1991A1 can take an 8-10 round magazine.

Cost. Here the Glock is the clear winner - new G30s retail for a little over five bills, whereas pretty much any new Officer's Model 1911 is going to run anywhere from $800 to "how much you got"$$$, but most are in the $1,000 - $1,200 range.

Well, I hope this makes amends for my previous effort. I read through the words I wrote not even two full months ago and had to chuckle - I don't know who I thought I was kidding pretending I didn't want a compact 1911... The Colt was a great deal from someone I'd dealt with previously and who was in a bit of a jam, moneywise - I made my standard offer, if he's ever in a position where he'd like to buy it back, I'll sell it for what I paid for it. I'll also give the right of first refusal.

Of course, the other big difference is that the 1991A1 doesn't have two different laser sights on it... ;)

That is all.

*I am, of course, lying. A compact 1911 has been on my WANT WANT WANT list for ages.


The Coffee Bastard said...

Far be it from me to sound like a miserable old curmugeon pedant but you describe the Glock 30 as a sub compact when it is in fact a compact. The Glock 36 is the 45 calibre sub compact.
On a positive note yours is the only blog I look forward to every day.
Best regards from Rocky Mount, Virginia where no one spits on the second amendment.

Weer'd Beard said...

The 1991 will eat from Government Mags? I'd never heard that before! actually just the opposite.

That's a great side-by-side shot, and shows a HUGE reason why my carry 1911 wears Chip McCormick slim carry grips. The gun carries better and prints a LOT less. I like the feel of factory-width grips, but it's a fair trade.

Also my 1911 tips the scale 2oz lighter than factory curb weight because of the thinner grips and a standard guide rod.

In this test I say the G30 wins hands down. The wider trigger guard is worth note as these months you may have to stick a gloved hand in your trigger guard.

Ambulance Driver said...

"...whereas pretty much any new Officer's Model 1911 is going to run anywhere from $800 to "how much you got"$$$, but most are in the $1,000 - $1,200 range."

Hi Standard's Crusader is an officer length 1911, and retails in the mid $400 range.

Shoots nice, too.

Jay G said...


Far be it from me to argue with a reader who offers such glowing praise, but Glock calls the G30 a subcompact right on their website...

The G36 is the single-stack version of the subcompact .45 ACP. It's thinner than the G30 (1.27" vs. 1.13"), but otherwise identically sized.


Yup. I was shooting the 1991A1 all day long with Government mags, from Wilson Combat to Chip McCormacks to USGI.

Pretty much the day I brought home the 1991A1 I knew I had to do another Glock vs. 1911 comparison.

Next up? Why, the 1991A1 full size and the 1991A compact, of course! :)

I hesitate to call a "winner" here, really. The weight difference is substantial yet there are lighter models out there. 7 vs. 9 rounds off the bat isn't that big of a difference, and 10 vs. 13 rounds in reliable factory mags again isn't all that great.

Really, this one boils down to which one you shoot better, and in my case, I shoot both of them about equally well (can keep all shots in a 6" circle under rapid-fire conditions at 25').

The G30 has the laser sights, too - that makes a difference to me...


That's my MA-centric view coming out, I guess. I didn't realize that Hi-Standard offered an officer's model. Heck, in my world, Hi-Standard only makes finicky-but-dead-nuts-accurate .22s... ;)

Anonymous said...

AD is correct. Also, my "Officer's" is a Citadel, made in the Philippines. After a 200 round break-in, it hasn't hiccupped for another 1500 rounds and will put 8 rounds into a fist sized hole at 7 yards as fast as I can pull the trigger. Also in the mid $400s.

HTH, sv

Hartley said...

I run the 10-round mags in my G30 - so I get a full ten + 1 - and it fits my big paws better. I think that the bigger mag would make the G30 about the same height as your 1991..

bogie said...

The only place that I have ever seen something described as both shorter and taller than its counterpart.

Yes, I know it makes a weird sort of sense - just caught my funnybone.