Springfield Armory Milspec PB1132 38 Super, $682
The Springfield Mil Spec is in some ways a commemorative pistol without getting gaudy or expensive. It has classic styling including a basic military style grip safety and solid hammer tang.
Sights are certainly not snag resistant but are tall and clear with a modern upgrade to a three-dot system. The mainspring housing is arched, something we don’t see much of anymore and the hard plastic, fully checkered grip panels are held in place by standard slotted screws. The trigger is solid metal, but the ejection port is flared and the entire package comes in a no-glare Parkerized finish. This gun also includes Springfield’s safety system that key locks the mainspring.
Fit and finish is first rate. There are no cast parts on this pistol, but it sells for the same amount as the High Standard Crusader. Before high winds and cold temperatures forced us to take our tests indoors, we had already completed field tests with this pistol firing at 25 yards. We found that the traditional 130-grain ball ammo was nowhere near as accurate as the hollowpoints.
Including the aforementioned first round flyers (which were less prevalent with this pistol), five-shot groups were in the 4-inch range. While ball ammo runs and shoots very well in the .45 ACP 1911s, the venerable 130-grain round nose leaves much to be desired in the Super. The Cor-Bon rounds (even when producing more than 500 foot-pounds of energy) did not seem to kick very hard and delivered the best accuracy.
At twenty-five yards from a seated rest, groups of less than 2.5 inches were common. This showed us the gun had consistent lockup, quality magazines, satisfactory slide to frame fit, and suitable sights.