My Colt Compact
The Colt Compact is the bare bones parkerized version of the Colt Officer's ACP. As with most of the 1911s that I have modified for my own use, I installed an Ed Brown grip safety and an Ed Brown tactical thumb safety. I kept the Colt hammer, sear and disconnect. The trigger, though, was swapped out for a Dlask magnesium and titanium unit. I fitted a Ted Yost retro rear sight into the slide and had a dentist friend fill the original front sight recess with a bit of gold. The Colt slide stop and the barrel that held the pistol's accuracy were retained.
But wait...... There is one modification I forgot to mention, the one most people are interested in. The Colt Compact and Officer's ACP both suffer from a reputation of a recoil plug that depends on a small lug that fits in the dustcover for retention. The barrel bushing is a thin unit, and through the rigors of prolong use, the lug on the recoil plug has been known to shear off. When that occurs, the plug and recoil spring are launched down range, and the gun becomes an amusing club. I wasn't going to have that on a carry gun.
To rectify the problem, I ordered a reverse recoil plug from Clark Custom for $20. This plug has a lug that fits in the original recess, but more importantly, it has a flange that goes around it's rear that prevents it from ever breaking. The Clark reverse plug is a solidly over-engineered chunk of steel, and only a glimpse makes even the most skeptical shooter realize it isn't going anywhere. It uses the original recoil springs and guide, and requires minimal fitting to the pistol.
With the big chunk of Clark steel up front, the thin Colt Compact bushing was looking pretty anemic. I started to shop around, and finally decided on an EGW Melt bushing to replace it. For $22.50, the EGW Melt bushing is another hefty piece of steel. It is designed to extend to the edges of the slide to prevent a seamless blend on the muzzle of the pistol if it is radically dehorned, or "melted." along with the EGW bushing, I ordered the bushing wrench necessary to turn it. The bushing required fitting to both the slide and the barrel, but the specs were so close that I was able to achieve a close tolerance fit with emery cloth and a bit of oil and elbow grease. The bushing extends out past the barrel's crown a bit, effectively protecting it. Between the Clark reverse plug and the EGW bushing, the pistol has all the reliability of a ball peen hammer,
I gave the pistol a subtle dehorning, and I took my new carry pistol to a pro for refinishing. I wanted a tough finish, but also one that was dark and nondescript. I chose a teflon coating with a black slide over an olive drab receiver. Finally, Pearce rubber double diamond grips and a Wilson Combat magazine with a low profile base pad rounded out the package for a durable, reliable and accurate carry gun.