SOLD FOR: $3425
Make: Colt, Customized by Kim Ahrends
Model: Combat Commander
Serial Number: 80BS23627
Year of Manufacture: The pistol was made in 1982. The gun was customized by Kim Ahrends some time in the 1980s.
Caliber: .45 ACP
Action Type: Single Action Semi-Auto with Removable Magazine
Markings: The right side of the frame is marked “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. CO. HARTFORD, CONN. U.S.A.” and “80BS23627”. The left side of the trigger guard has a “VP” proof and “L”. The right side of the trigger guard has a partial inspection mark. The right side of the slide is marked “COLT’S COMBAT COMMANDER MODEL” followed by “FROM THE WORKBENCH OF / Kim Ahrends”. The left side of the slide is marked “COMBAT / COMMANDER”, “COLT”, and “AUTOMATIC / CALIBER .45” followed by a Rampant Colt. The barrel bushing is marked “7267718 / NM”.
Barrel Length: 4 1/4″
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a serrated ramp sight soldered to the slide. The rear sight is a Smith & Wesson 3rd Generation metal frame semi-auto “elephant ear” sight. The sight is a square notch blade set in a base that is adjustable for windage and elevation, it is protected by two large ears on either side.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are smooth Ahrends custom grips. There are light handling marks. There are no major defects. The grips rate in Excellent condition.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Original to Kim Ahrends Build
Bore Condition: The bore is bright and the rifling is sharp. There is no erosion in the bore. In my opinion, the bore is a 10 out of 10.
Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 97% of its current finish. There is light finish wear on the edges, most noticeable on the slide at the muzzle and on the grip safety. There are some scattered little marks that have lightly worn the finish, mostly on the edges. The markings are mostly clear and well defined but some on the left of the slide are incomplete. The screwheads are sharp. Overall, this pistol rates in about Excellent condition.
Mechanics: The grip safety has been deactivated but has not been pinned. The action functions correctly. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: Included is the serial matching Colt box, one 7-round magazine, and paperwork including the manual.
Our Assessment: The 1911 and 1911-A1 pistols served the military of the United States from 1911 to 1985, through two World Wars and the Korean and Vietnam wars. They gained a reputation as a reliable handgun with plenty of stopping power, and are held in high regard by those who have used them. The design was the end-result of a series of developments by famous gun designer John Browning, starting with the Model 1900. The advances made by Browning were revolutionary at the time, and were so successful that they are considered commonplace today. Browning not only developed first a pivoting and then a tilting barrel to allow for a locked system, he developed the concept of “the slide”, which is now synonymous with semi-automatic handguns.
This is one HOT piece done up by none other than Kim Ahrends. While most will think of grips when they hear the name, the 1980s and 1990s saw him building 1911s, and damn were they good. The pistol has extensive work done by Kim and it is a sight to see, a pleasure to hold, and must be a joy to shoot! First off and most noticeable is the Smith & Wesson 3rd Generation semi-auto “Elephant Ear” sight. There are only two players in the game who undertook such a task, DEVEL and Kim Ahrends of course! That already says tons about the craftsmanship that went into this gun. The function of this rear sight is great, if you’ve ever dented your rear sight insert then you wish you had the elephant ears there for protection, perfect for a serious combat pistol. The rear of the slide is serrated to further improve sighting, and the extra touch of nuance! The slide has also been equipped with a new front sight to match. The serrated match trigger has received a trigger job and is a dream. Sights and a trigger like this wouldn’t matter if you couldn’t get a grip and the beautiful Ahrends grips are smooth so they don’t offer much, the solution? Simple, checker the frame! The fronstrap, MSH, and the front of the trigger guard all got the custom Ahrends checkering treatment. The grip is superb, the raised panel checkering and the mainspring housing checkering provide such a great grip on one almost wonders if you are gripping it or it is gripping you! We come to the barrel which has been expertly fitted with a match bushing and material next to the chamber inside the slide to ensure you’re hitting the bullseye everytime! The grip safety has been intentionally fit so that it does not activate but has not been pinned and the thumb safety has been customized and extended. The Ahrends grips are beautiful and the fact that they are smooth lets the grain really show, they pop against the rich polished pre-War style blued finish and really put a bow on the package.
As with many great gunsmiths, Kim likely came to the realization that there may be better margins in other areas of the gun industry and stopped pistol smithing to focus on grips. It seems that this is a common path, I can easily think of two of the best names in custom guns that took similar paths from guns to grips, Hogue and Pachmayr. Kim kept his eye on beauty and quality in his grip business but nonetheless, he got out of the pistolsmithing game. No more Ahrends 1911s are being made, and as of 2020 he has ceased producing grips. This is a wonderful opportunity to add a phenomenal piece to an advanced collection. Ahrends 1911s do not come around often and now is the perfect time to get one! Please see our photos and good luck!
Some are hot, some are not, but thankfully most can be shot!