Larry Vickers, a former Delta Team operator, is well known in the firearms community for his work as a trainer and consultant to manufacturers. His latest collaboration with Wilson Combat has resulted in the Vickers Elite Commander.
At the recent 2018 Athlon Outdoors Rendezvous held just outside of Missoula, Mont., I had the opportunity to fire the pistol. It’s one of those guns you just don’t want to put down.
Options Upon Options
Using 1911s through much of his career has resulted in some very strong preferences for Vickers; those are reflected in the Elite Commander.
Wilson Combat gives customers the option of frame material and type. For instance, Wilson built the Elite Commander I fired on an alloy frame; it saves more than a half-pound of weight. But the manufacturer will also build the same gun on a steel frame and you’ll also have the ability to order the gun with a light rail.
Likewise you’ll have your choice of caliber. Wilson chambered the sample I shot for .45 ACP, but the gun is also available in 9mm and even .38 Super.
Sliding Into Place
Starting with the Vickers Elite Commander slide, we see that Wilson abbreviated it for use with a 4.25-inch barrel. Wilson Combat flat-topped the slide and then serrated it. The slide features a lowered and flared ejection port, not to mention some really cool and retro-looking end mill ball cuts.
Wilson outfits the Elite Commander with a fixed one-piece Battlesight at the rear of the slide. It features a deep “U” notch, which matches up nicely with the gold bead front sight for very quick sight acquisition. Wilson serrated he rear of the rear sight at 40 LPI to reduce glare.
Vickers Elite Commander Features
Wilson Combat provides an accuracy guarantee of 1.5 inches at 25 yards for the Vickers Elite Commander.
The manufacturer uses a match grade stainless steel barrel. The barrel bushing fit is as close to perfect as I have seen on any 1911. Noticeably, the barrel hood features some scalloping, which gives dirt and firing residue a place to go rather than tie up the gun.
The Elite Commander frame is full size. It features 30 LPI checkering on the front strap and 40 LPI on the mainspring housing.
Like Vickers, I also prefer some type of magwell on my carry 1911s and the Elite Commander’s is first rate. The one-piece magwell funnel/mainspring housing is a solid unit that is impossible to knock out of alignment and tie up the gun. It makes speed reloads fast and certain. Meanwhile, the quarter-inch length it adds to the gun’s grip makes the Elite Commander feel even more controllable.
Controls are in the normal 1911 positions and the magazine release is slightly extended. The extended strong side only manual safety snicks off and on as crisply as the trigger breaks.
Wilson Combat technicians set the Elite Commanders trigger pull at a very sensible 3.25 pounds. The gun is outfitted with a medium length trigger, which I found just about perfect for length.
A high sweep beavertail grip safety is used, but its length has been bobbed to make it more appropriate for carry.
Wilson also rounded the heel of the gun so that clothing won’t hang up on it for concealed carry. The slide is heavily beveled along its edge as well to prevent it from slicing an expensive leather holster or its user.
Unfortunately my shooting was limited to several magazines full of ammo and I did not have the ability to bench rest the gun for accuracy. However, I can say it handled beautifully — that should come as no surprise. The crisp trigger and firm reset made doubletaps fast and easy on the steel targets set out to 25 yards.
Wilson Combat’s Vickers Elite Commander is built by people who know how to make the 1911 unerringly reliable and exceedingly accurate. They stand by their product 100 percent. Larry Vickers then adds his years and years of real world experience in armed conflict, much of it with a 1911 in his hand. The end result is a gun that you can bet your life on.
For more information, please WilsonCombat.com.
Wilson Combat’s Vickers Elite Commander Specs
- Caliber: .45 ACP, 9mm and .38 Super
- Barrel Length: 4.25 inches
- Overall Length: 7.85 inches
- Height: 5.6 inches
- Weight: 45.2 ounces; (39.6 ounces empty)
- Grips: G10 Vickers Elite Logo
- Sights: Battlesight fixed rear, gold bead front sight
- Accuracy Guarantee: One and one half inches at 25-yards
- MSRP: $3,850