By Virgil Caldwell
This is the second Guncrafter Industries 1911 I’ve owned. While there are comparable handguns from Wilson Combat, Nighthawk and Les Baer, and others, the Guncrafter ‘gun with no name’ style — their base model — is very attractive, if simple
Having owned and shot a lot of John Moses Browning’s designs, I’ve found that Guncrafter is certainly one of the best of the best two or three 1911 handguns. That’s a subjective statement. “Best” may refer to the handgun that suits your needs and your style the best.
Quality isn’t as subjective, but some have a more difficult time recognizing quality. I try to be objective concerning new types and models of firearms, but I know exactly what I prefer in a handgun.
I like a firearm that compliments my skills. One which is both accurate and completely reliable.
I appreciate the timeless design of the 1911. I have no place in the safe for sub-standard 1911 handguns made to sell cheaply. After all, a good 1911 can be so much more.
The 1911 was the finest combat handgun in the world when introduced and remains so when properly manufactured and fitted. My handguns aren’t safe queens put away and pampered. I fire them often and carry the best examples on a daily basis.
Guncrafter’s No Name CCO is among the most appealing of their handguns for concealed carry. The CCO sports a commander-length slide with 4.25 inch barrel and an officer’s model grip frame.
The gun’s finish is basic black Melonite. It’s a simple, uncluttered design that may seem bare bones until you look more closely at the details that went into the pistol.
The front grip strap is nicely and precisely checkered, as is the mainspring housing. The checkering is 15 LPI (lines per inch) rather than the usual 20 to 30 LPI. In my experience, this is the best combination of comfort and grip-ability.
The slide lock safety is sensibly extended. It isn’t the unnecessarily large “gas pedal” type some models feature, but still offers excellent leverage. The safety is crisp and very well fitted.
The beavertail grip safety is upswept in the modern fashion. This beavertail helps comfortably funnel the hand into the No Name CCO’s grip. Some who adopt the thumbs forward grip will allow the palm to form a cup. I’ve seen that lift the shooter’s hand off the grip safety, deactivating the trigger on some pistols. That isn’t a problem with the Guncrafter’s beavertail grip safety.
Trigger compression is characteristically consistent and crisp. This is a 1911, after all. The No Name CCO’s trigger breaks at an ideal 3.7 pounds.
The barrel bushing is tight, very tight. The top of the slide is milled and grooved in an artful longitudinal treatment. The hammer is a skeletonized unit. There’s no MIM or plastic in this handgun.
Guncrafter uses excellent Heinie Ledge sights on the No Name CCO. The rear sight is designed to allow racking the slide one-handed on a belt or flat surface if needed. The dovetailed rear sight is machined from solid bar stock, so it isn’t going anywhere.
This one features a tritium vial and squared notch (a U-shaped notch is also available). The front sight is available with either tritium or a fiber optic tube (I went with tritium). These excellent night sights give the pistol 24 hour effectiveness.
The Heinie Ledge sights allow precision fire to at least 50 yards and a good shot will have a good chance at 100 yards.
When hefting the pistol in the hand the checkered grips offer a good balance of adhesion and abrasion. The forged steel slide rolls smoothly over the locking lugs without chatter. The barrel has a tight three-point fit in the classic sense.
The muzzle is beautifully crowned. The feed ramp surfaces feature the requisite 1/32nd inch gap between the halves of the feed ramp that ensures feed reliability. The barrel is properly fitted with a good tight fit in the locking lugs.
This type of precise hand-fitting makes for a consistent return to battery with every shot. With a precision fit such as that on the Guncrafter No Name CCO, eccentric wear is practically eliminated, resulting in much longer life for the moving parts.
A gun priced at the level of the No Name CCO (or Guncrafter’s other 1911 pistols) isn’t for everyone. It represents a considerable outlay of cash (or credit). But the greater investment will be in the time spent to master this piece. If you don’t take the time to do that, the cash outlay is wasted in my humble opinion.
The CCO is a very controllable and easily concealed handgun. The sights, trigger, and grips add up to a great-handling 1911. While the grip is shorter than a standard commander-sized 1911, recoil isn’t noticeably greater than a steel frame commander.
I’ve put over 1600 rounds of ammunition through the No Name CCO during the past few months. The results have been very good. The pistol is nearly as easy to use well as the Guncrafter Commander I also own. And that is very good.
There have been no failures to feed, chamber, fire or eject. The pistol has digested standard 230 grain hardball, 185, 200 and 230 grain hollow points, and 185 grain +P.
Like all quality firearms the Guncrafter No Name CCO prefers some loads over others, but the overall level of accuracy is very high. Firing from a solid braced standing barricade I have fired several 1.5 inch groups at 25 yards. That is very good accuracy.
I find nothing wrong with 230 grain full metal jacketed (hardball) loads for personal defense and general outdoors use. This is a proven performer with good penetration.
That said, we should take every advantage of modern hollow points and deploy a load with a good balance of expansion and penetration. The answer for me in this gun is the Black Hills Ammunition 230 grain JHP. It’s a fine choice with excellent accuracy in every 1911 I have tested it in.
I have also fired the Black Hills Ammunition 185 grain TAC +P. At 1000 fps this load offers good expansion and some will prefer the lighter recoil of the 185 grain loading.
Few guns conceal as well as a 1911, particularly one of the size
The No Name CCO is designed for concealed carry and that demands a credible holster. I looked to Swordslinger Custom Holsters for an inside the waistband rig. This type of holster conceals the slide of the handgun inside the trousers, allowing the wearing of a larger handgun than in the case of a standard belt holster.
The Guncrafter No Name CCO isn’t a handgun for everyone. Not at this price. But if it’s within your price range, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better made, more accurate or reliable concealed carry pistol.
Specifications: Guncrafter Industries No Name CCO 1911 Pistol
Capacity: 7 + 1
Magazines: Two stainless steel included
Barrel: 4¼ in. match stainless
Sights: tritium night sights
Frame: Forged stainless or aluminum, black Melonite or matte stainless finish
Slide: Forged stainless, black Melonite or matte stainless finish
Overall Length: 7 7/8 in.
Height: 5 in. w/o magazine
Weight: 33 oz.
MSRP: $2,939 (about $2600 retail)
Ratings (out of five stars):
Fit and finish: * * * * *
It just doesn’t get any better than this. All the details are well conceived and beautifully executed, as you’d expect in a handgun at this price.
Reliability: * * * * *
No break-in malfunctions despite the Guncrafter No Name CCO’s tight fit and tolerances. In fact, no problems at all.
Accuracy: * * * * *
No question here, the most accurate commander length barrel I have fired.
Overall: * * * * *
The Guncrafter No Name CCO is a simple thing of beauty. Not a lot of frills or flourishes, just a beautiful, almost minimalist gun that’s been executed flawlessly. Price may be its only drawback, but this kind of quality costs.