I know you may not believe me, but Handgunner readers own a lot of 1911 pistols. Yeah, I know, hard to believe, but it’s still the truth. We all care for ’em, shoot ’em, buy more of ’em, and just plain love them dearly. But what most of us don’t love so much is the cost of ammo these days. Which brings us neatly around to the Kimber Rimfire Target Conversion Kit. The kit has all the goodies you need to turn your favorite 1911 into a cheap-shooting .22 LR or .17 Mach2 blaster, depending on the kit you buy. Our test sample had adjustable sights, and slipped right onto about a half-dozen good quality 1911s I had on hand. Kimber says it will work on 4″ or 5″ guns, but will not work on the Taurus PT 1911, may not work on the Para GI Expert and is not for Kimber Ultra Models.
Having said that, I ran shooting tests using a genuine Colt Series 80 (works on Series 70 models too) and it ran fine. When chambering a round, let the slide snap forward so it chambers correctly. Also, you will need to use good quality, high-speed .22 LR ammo, such as CCI Mini-Mags or something alike. If you just have to use standard-velocity loads, you need to install a lighter hammer spring or the slide can’t reliably cock the base gun’s hammer. Don’t put the .22 magazine into a standard 1911 when the .45 slide assembly is installed, as it might damage the magazine. Also, the slide won’t stay back after the last round with the .22 kit on.
Accuracy was good, hovering around 2.5″ or a bit more depending on the load. Plenty good for informal targeting, plinking, teaching someone new to the 1911 platform or even small-game hunting. It’s great fun to shoot your favorite 1911 like this, and just might encourage you to get more trigger time practicing that all-important “press”! Around $333 at full retail. For more info: www.americanhandgunner.com/kimber
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