D&L Sports™, Inc.
Reinforced Spring Plugs for Compact 1911s
When Colt introduced the 1911 Officer's Model it became a favorite of shooters wanting a compact 45 ACP pistol. The overall size of the Officer's Model was large enough to handle a steady diet of full power 45 auto ammo, yet small enough for excellent concealed carry or back up pistol duties.
Serious shooters have put the compact 1911s through hundreds of thousands of test fire and training rounds at D&L Sports™. Numerous lessons have been learned:
1. Don't select a 1911 smaller than the compact/OM sized 1911. Subcompact 1911s have too many operational problems.
2. Many of the same custom features on a full size 1911 also generally work well on the compact model.
3. When using your compact 1911 as a backup pistol to your full sized 1911, take care not to over-seat your full sized magazines in your compact pistol. This can lock up the compact pistol. It is best to reload the compact pistol with full sized magazines when the slide is in its forward position to minimize the potential for over seating a full sized magazine in the compact pistol. Use compact pistol magazines in the compact pistols when ever possible to eliminate the over-seated magazine issue.
Reinforced Spring Plugs for Compact 1911s
   (left) Factory Spring Plug
   (middle) D&L Sports™ Standard Reinforced Spring Plug
   (right) D&L Sports™ Reinforced Spring Plug with Retainer
4. The compact pistols work hard to absorb the recoil of ammo designed to operate in a larger pistol. The recommended recoil spring replacement intervals for compact pistols is every 300 rounds, and certainly at least every 500 rounds.
5. Steel frame compact pistols are more durable than the lightweight alloy pistols.
6. Colt Officer's Model pistols should be given at least standard 1911 reliability work, and a heavier duty barrel bushing and recoil spring plug. The factory bushing has demonstrated repeated problems with cracking. The factory recoil spring plug commonly shears off the undersized retaining tab and shoots the plug and recoil spring out of the front of the pistol during fire. This leaves the pistol inoperable by conventional means.

Installed Reinforced Spring Plugs
   (left) D&L Sports™ Reinforced Spring Plug with Lock Screw
   (right) D&L Standard Installation of Reinforced Spring Plug
Dave Lauck received repeated requests to manufacture a compact signature 1911, but refused to do so until all the known weak points of the existing compact pistol could be cured. Dave Lauck has redesigned the weak recoil spring plug into a heavy duty unit designed to work in conjunction with a heavy duty barrel bushing. This reinforced spring plug system is used in all D&L signature CR-45s (close range 45s).
Two different versions of the reinforced spring plug are now offered to those wanting to upgrade their Colt OM pistols. Both of these plugs are simple to install, but like all other components from D&L Sports™, they should be installed by a competent gunsmith.
Reinforced Spring Plugs for Compact 1911s
The standard reinforced spring plug requires an approximate .090" flat be milled in the underside of the slide to allow the reinforced plug shoulder to seat properly in the slide. The plug should be fitted along with a heavy duty barrel bushing. It is also recommended that a small lock screw be drilled and tapped through the underside of the slide and spring plug. The heavy shoulder on the plug stops the plug from going out the front of the slide during pistol operation. The lock screw stops the plug from being pushed back into the slide during re-holstering, muzzle impact, chamber press checking, etc.
The reinforced spring plug with stainless steel retainer is installed in the slide in the same manner as the standard reinforced plug. A heavy duty bushing is needed with this plug system. The retainer is then screwed into the front of the plug to stop the plug form being pushed back into the slide during re-holstering, muzzle impact or chamber press checking.
Both of these heavy duty designs cure the weak front end component problems that have plagued the compact 1911 pistol since its introduction.
Standard SS reinforced plug
Price: $40
SS reinforced plug with SS retainer
Price: $60
Heavy duty barrel bushing
Price: $45

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