Armand Swenson Custom Colt Commander .45 ACP Semi-Automatic Pistol, 1973

SOLD FOR: $8526.79

LSB#: 230302JU001

Make: Colt / Armand Swenson

Model: Custom Commander Model

Serial Number: 70BS15777

Year of Manufacture: 1973 (

Caliber: .45 ACP

Action Type: Semi-Auto Single Action Pistol fed by Detachable Magazine

Markings: The left side of the slide is marked “COMMANDER / MODEL”, “COLT”, “AUTOMATIC / CALIBER .45” and with a rampant colt. The left side of the frame at the trigger guard has a “3” and a triangle, the right has “X”. The right side of the slide is marked “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. CO. HARTFORD, CONN. U.S.A.”. The right side of the frame is marked “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. CO. HARTFORD, CONN. U.S.A.”, with the serial number and “A.D. SWENSON / GARDENA, CALIF.”. There is a “K” insert into the rear sight base. each arm of the thumb-safety is marked “A.D. SWENSON / GARDENA, CALIF.”.

Barrel Length: 4 1/4?

Sights / Optics: The sights are similar to a S&W revolver with a serrated ramp front blade fixed to the slide and a square notch rear sight adjustable for windage and elevation in a base slotted and screw-secured to the rear of the slide.

Stock Configuration & Condition: The grip is a checkered black rubber Pachmayr Signature wraparound grip. It shows handling wear, most notable at the bottom edges. Otherwise, the checkering is well defined. There are a few spots of fraying at the edges. Overall, the grip is in Very Good condition as not original to the gun. The fronstrap of the grip is covering checkering on the frontstrap of the frame.

Type of Finish: This gun is finished in the famous satin hard chrome finish pioneered by Armand Swenson.

Finish Originality: Refinished by Armand Swenson in hard chrome.

Bore Condition: The bore is mostly bright and the rifling is sharp. There is no erosion in the bore, but there is some stubborn fouling. In this writer’s opinion, the bore rates 9 out of 10.

Overall Condition: This gun retains about 98% of its current metal finish. The balance of the finish shows just minor handling marks and light operational wear. The screw heads are tool marked with strong slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this gun rates in about Excellent condition as customized.

Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The slide has very minor play to the frame. The slide features a barrel indexing stud on the left side. The trigger pull is light and crisp. We have not fired this pistol. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.

Box & Accessories: This pistol comes in a black plastic Doskocil case with a single 7-round magazine.

Our Assessment: This is a Colt Commander Model pistol made in 1973 that has been customized by famed gunsmith A. D. Swenson. From a March 2001 article in the American Rifleman: “Custom tuning of the M1911 is not new, but, prior to Swenson, gunsmiths such as Bob Chow, Jim Clark and Al Dinan had focused solely on accuracy work for NRA Bullseye pistol competition. Along with lightening triggers and installing adjustable sights, the Government Model had never been customized specifically for combative purposes—a genre that later came to be known as “custom combat” gunsmithing—until a handful of pistolsmiths in Southern California began modifying the big slab-sided pistol for down-and-dirty use. The late Armand Swenson remains the foremost of these pioneering pistolsmiths and the man who defined the custom combat .45 for evermore.”.

This pistol has a hard chrome finish with a flared ejection port, custom target sights, an extended ambidextrous safety, a beveled magazine well, a squared-off trigger guard, and with fine checkering added to the front of the trigger guard and the front strap. This pistol was refinished in hard chrome after all the custom work was done, and is in Excellent condition with about 98% of its finish remaining. This pistol was made for the serious shooter who wanted a top performing pistol. This pistol is great for action pistol events as well as for personal protection. This is an extremely nice looking gun that can also be used for home defense. With its extremely durable hard chrome finish, this pistol should continue to provide shooting enjoyment for decades. Please see our photos and good luck!

Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California -Bud

Armand Swenson Custom Colt Commander .45 ACP Semi-Automatic Pistol, 1973
Armand Swenson Custom Colt Commander .45 ACP Semi-Automatic Pistol, 1973