GUN TESTS GRADE: A-
This is a recent price at DevilDogArms.com. The Devil Dog Commander 45 is a distinctive handgun. The pistol is manufactured with forward cocking serrations and a flattop slide. The frame is cast, while the slide is forged steel. The flattop slide is attractive in a manner formerly reserved for much more expensive handguns. The pistol is supplied with Kensight sights, which are similar to the Novak in profile. The pistol seems well made. This is the only handgun tested without night sights, which helps it be the least expensive.
|Action Type||Short recoil-operated locked breech, single action|
|Overall Length||7.75 in.|
|Overall Height||5.5 in.|
|Max. Width||1.25 in.|
|Weight Unloaded||35.0 oz.|
|Weight Loaded||39.4 oz.|
|Slide Material||Forged steel, domestic 4140 barstock|
|Slide Retraction Effort||19.0 lbs.|
|Receiver Material||Cast steel|
|Front Strap Height||2.6 in.|
|Back Strap Height||3.2 in.|
|Barrel Length||4.25 in., 1:16 LH twist|
|Grip Thickness Max.||1.25 in.|
|Grip Circumference||5.37 in.|
|Magazines||Two 8 round|
|Rear Sight||Fixed drift-adjustable Kensight|
|Front Sight||Dovetailed post|
|Sight Radius||5.7 in.|
|Trigger Pull Weight||4.75 lbs.|
|Trigger Span||2.8 in.|
|Safeties||Slide lock, grip|
The slide-lock safety is well fitted. The beavertail grip safety releases its hold on the trigger about midway into compression, as it should. The trigger is smooth with a clean break at 4.75 pounds. This weight remained constant throughout the test, as we re-checked the trigger-pull weight on our Lyman scale at the end of the test. The Devil Dog pistol is supplied with two Mec-Gar eight-round magazines with base pads.
The front strap is nicely finished with 22-lpi checkering. This checkering, combined with the G10 grips, makes for excellent adhesion and abrasion. Some of the raters thought perhaps the 1911 front-strap angle or bevel had been changed by Devil Dog, but it had not. It simply feels different due to the checkering design. This is a competent treatment we recommend for duty use. A Commander-length handgun is traditionally a 4.25-inch-barrel pistol with a standard barrel bushing. Like the other 1911s, the DD’s barrel bushing is tight, but not so tight it demands a tool for field stripping. The Devil Dog pistol is finished in a black-oxide coating.
The testing was begun with the same loads used in the other pistols, and the same regimen. While the Commander kicks more than a Government Model due to its lighter weight, we did not find the pistol uncomfortable to fire during the test. The sights are not up to the Heinie Ledge/Straight Eight standard, but they proved useful even at 100 yards. During the firing stage, we had one inexplicable failure to lock open on the last shot. We are calling this shooter error because we believe the shooter rode the slide lock with a thumb. The pistol gave good results without a single failure to feed, chamber, fire, or eject. The Devil Dog Commander handles well, and there were no complaints with the controls, sights, or trigger.
This is a service-grade handgun costing one third the price of the high-end pistols, and we did not expect match-grade accuracy. As one of the raters noted, the Devil Dog is considerably more accurate than the Colt Series 70 Commander he carries on a daily basis. The Devil Dog was accurate for a Commander 1911 pistol.
As an example, the Devil Dog is more accurate than three out of four 45 ACP Commanders we tested in a previous report, but not as accurate as the Desert Eagle 1911 45 tested. We cannot say we struggled with either recoil or accuracy with this handgun. It is the lightest handgun tested; the Guncrafter Industries Commander pistol with its bar-stock parts and light rail and mag well was heavier.In this test, the Devil Dog is the equal of any 1911 Commander we have tested, with flawless reliability. The handling is good. As a carry gun, the Devil Dog is probably the preferred pistol of the test. In combat accuracy and speed to an accurate first shot, the Devil Dog may have led the way out to 7 yards, but after this, the longer-barrel handguns pulled away by a margin, and the superior trigger and sights of the Guncrafter also gave it an advantage.
Our Team Said: In absolute accuracy, the Devil Dog trailed the pack, but it isn’t an inaccurate handgun. With groups of 2.4 to 3.25 inches at 75 feet, the pistol is clearly more than accurate enough for personal defense. After three months of testing, we noticed the finish was worn in some areas. This isn’t a handgun meant to be a safe queen, but the finish of the other handguns has not worn similarly. We rated the pistol down a half grade on finish wear, but we would buy this handgun.
45 ACP Range Data.xlsx
|Fiocchi XTPHP 200-grain 45XTPB25||Dan Wesson 1911 Heritage||Springfield Armory Loaded Operator||Nighthawk Falcon||Devil Dog 4.25 Standard||Guncrafter Commander|
|Average Velocity||970 fps||954 fps||951 fps||899 fps||922 fps|
|Muzzle Energy||418 ft.-lbs.||404 ft.-lbs.||402 ft.-lbs.||359 ft.-lbs.||377 ft.-lbs.|
|Small Group||1.8 in.||2.0 in.||1.5 in.||2.2 in.||1.4 in.|
|Average Group||2.4 in.||2.5 in.||2.0 in.||2.7 in.||1.8 in.|
|Hornady Custom 230-grain XTP +P 9096||Dan Wesson 1911 Heritage||Springfield Armory Loaded Operator||Nighthawk Falcon||Devil Dog 4.25 Standard||Guncrafter Commander|
|Average Velocity||919 fps||907 fps||903 fps||867 fps||880 fps|
|Muzzle Energy||431 ft.-lbs.||420 ft.-lbs.||416 ft.-lbs.||384 ft.-lbs.||395 ft.-lbs.|
|Small Group||2.0 in.||2.2 in.||1.7 in.||2.4 in.||1.6 in.|
|Average Group||2.4 in.||2.6 in.||2.1 in.||3.0 in.||2.0 in.|
|Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel 230-grain GDHP 23975GD||Dan Wesson 1911 Heritage||Springfield Armory Loaded Operator||Nighthawk Falcon||Devil Dog 4.25 Standard||Guncrafter Commander|
|Average Velocity||855 fps||839 fps||828 fps||810 fps||780 fps|
|Muzzle Energy||373 ft.-lbs.||359 ft lbs.||350 ft.-lbs.||335 ft.-lbs.||311 ft.-lbs.|
|Small Group||1.9 in.||1.8 in.||1.6 in.||2.6 in.||1.7 in.|
|Average Group||2.4 in.||2.4 in.||2.1 in.||3.3 in.||2.0 in.|