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Springfied Armory’s Range Officer

Springfied Armory’s Range Officer

I once undertook a minimalist approach to modifying a stock Series 80 Colt. Just the basics like Novak sights, beavertail, burr hammer, long trigger and an extended safety. The result was a very nice and shootable pistol for not a lot of money. I remember thinking it would be even nicer to buy such a pistol readymade, with everything you need (okay, everything I need) and no more.

The Springfield Armory Range Officer is exactly such a pistol. The fact the designers agree with me on what features are essential just proves what clever people they are. Actually, if the pistol on consignment is typical, they went a little further. The slide/frame fit is excellent and accuracy is outstanding — as in equaling some of my match pistols costing three and four times as much.

The base gun is a classic, full-size 1911-A1 .45 ACP with 5″ barrel. There’s a ramped, serrated-post front sight. The fully adjustable rear sight, made by Springfield, is virtually identical to the (no longer made) Bo-Mar BMCS. The sight is low-mounted in a dovetail cut for the classic “buried” look.

There’s a beavertail grip safety, extended manual safety and long trigger. The flat-mainspring housing is checkered. The Range Officer has match grade, stainless steel barrel and bushing. It uses the “original” recoil spring guide, magazine release and slide stop.
Otherwise, the pistol is notable for what it doesn’t have. There are no front cocking serrations, no magazine loading chute, no frontstrap or triggerguard checkering, ambidextrous safety or fancy 2-tone finish.

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  1. NCFlyfisher says:

    Nice, informative article! I bought one of these a few months ago. I’ve been very impressed with it’s craftsmanship and the tightening of my shooting group (better than any handgun I’ve ever fired). A S.A. Range Officer in a Commander size? Like to see one :)

  2. Mikey Joe says:

    Just bought a R.O. and this is by far the best gun I have ever owned. I paid $819 for it…not a bad price. Took it to the range and shot 400 rounds flawlessly. Two clicks on the adjustable sight and I was shooting 1 – 1/2 inch patterns at 12 yards. No jamming, hardly any recoil, and just a great shooting experience. I have owned many 1911′s but this one is my baby.

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