Over the last 10-plus years, a number of 10mm pistols have passed through my hands. Many were stock, but most were customized. Several are still in the hands of friends to this day. A few of these were double-column pistols, but the majority were either Delta Elites or similar single-stack pistols.

Having carried a 1911 for years, I regard the 10mm cartridge as simply providing another ballistic alternative. Especially early on, the 10mm was better suited than the .40 S&W for penetrating car doors, glass and other media. At moderate velocities, it also tended to make certain bonded bullets perform even better in soft tissue. Significant increases in bullet design and production have narrowed that gap a bit, but the 10mm remains an excellent cartridge for protection or duty use.

The year 2011 marked the 100th anniversary of the U.S. military’s adoption of the 1911 pistol. As part of the celebration, Gunsite hosted a 250 Pistol class with Colt, who, naturally, had a strong presence at the event. While enjoying the festivities and looking through a Colt brochure, the words “Tactical Package” piqued my interest: The Colt Custom Shop had begun offering a Tactical Package of customizations that could be performed on any of their 1911 pistols. The brochure detailed every upgrade 1911s generally needed—ones I had already been performing on my pistols. The Custom Shop has a fantastic reputation, and this seemed the perfect opportunity for another project.

A few months back, I tested the new production model Colt Delta Elite. As I’ve used so many of these guns, it felt like a homecoming for me. The pistol proved reliable, accurate and a true representation of the original, rekindling my interest in the caliber. So it seemed like the perfect pistol for the Colt Custom Shop’s Tactical Package—and everyone agreed.

Gun Details

The Colt Custom Shop’s Tactical Package starts with its “Action Tuning.” This includes lowering and flaring the ejection port and tuning the extractor and ejector. Also, the barrel-throat feed ramp is contoured and polished for flawless chambering, and the magazines are adjusted and tuned if needed.

The pistol is then dehorned of all sharp edges for comfortable concealed carry. Next, the Colt Custom Shop installs a high-quality grip safety, and Novak night sights, and if you would like an ambidextrous thumb safety, the Custom Shop will install one for you. The pistol is also given a checkered frontstrap as well as a matching checkered mainspring housing. The magazine well is beveled, and the slide and frame are hand-fitted for a perfect mating. Finally, the pistol is finished in your choice of the many finishes available from Colt. You can order additional upgrades and customization options, but for the most part, this basic package is all you’ll ever need to turn your stock Colt 1911 into an excellent tactical pistol.

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  • theoneshot1

    “I want it, I want it, I want it; you can’t have it!” The Who, Magic Bus