Colt M45 CQBP, Part 1

The new Colt M1070CQBP is derived from their stainless Rail Gun, and recently won the Marine Corps pistol contract to replace the aging fleet of hand built 1911s currently in use by certain specialized units.

At first glance, the most obvious change on the gun is the tan Cerakote finish applied over the stainless base gun.  A series of other changes and refinements to the frame, slide, and small parts were also made to meet the requirements of the USMC testing protocol.

Before hitting the workbench, this pistol hit the range for a short session.  Colt has indicated that they plan to release the M45 for commercial/retail sales, but their production capacity is limited and they are currently pushing these pistols out primarily for the contract requirement.  Being fortunate enough to be in possession of such a rare gun, it is not my intention to torture test or wear out this specimen.

In shooting the gun with some mixed 230 ball and JHP loads, it was apparent that the new dual recoil spring system made an immediately noticeable difference in the recoil impulse.  Even hot JHP loads were quite soft to shoot.  The M45 was otherwise unremarkable, with a similar external feel to my existing Colt Rail Gun.

Since the star of the show is really the dual recoil spring system, let’s take a closer look.  In the photo sequence below, you can see that the recoil spring system consists of a small diameter inner spring, a standard diameter outer spring, and a modified GI style guide rod with a smaller diameter shaft to accommodate the small inner spring.  Field stripping is no different than with the usual GI spring setup, and the two springs separate easily once removed from the slide.  You do not notice the two springs when manually cycling the slide or shooting, and the slide is no more difficult to cycle than any other 1911 with a 17-18.5 lb spring.  If Colt were to make this system available as an aftermarket accessory, I would consider it a must have item on any 1911 that will shoot full power ammo.






Stay tuned for more features on the inner workings of this new Colt!


This entry was posted in 1911, Review and tagged , , by Hilton Yam. Bookmark the permalink.

About Hilton Yam

Hilton Yam is the founder of 10-8 Performance, LLC. He is a full time law enforcement officer in Florida with extensive experience working robbery and violent fugitives. He is currently assigned to firearms training and SWAT. He is a team leader as well as the lead instructor for his team, responsible for providing training in firearms, CQB, rappelling, defensive tactics, and team tactics. Hilton is also responsible for RDT&E of equipment. He has carried a 1911 extensively on duty, and has spent a great deal of time examining what makes the guns succeed and fail.

13 thoughts on “Colt M45 CQBP, Part 1

  1. So, can we at least hope that there is a 10-8 Performance Dual recoil spring kit in the future…..just a suggestion from the peanut gallery.

  2. The dual recoil setup is borrowed from the the delta elite and you can buy those parts online from colt. The guide and inner spring are in stock and the outer is out of stock right now.

  3. is this now your personal gun or on loan for testing? if personal, why not torture test it? i would like to see how well the gun and new recoil spring performs after high round counts. i had a 100 year of service black cerakote rail gun and while it shot well, the fit, finish, and sharp edges were in contrast to my springfield mc operator. for the same price the mc operator came with night sights.

    after 2k rounds through the mc operator it was still tight with no slop; the rail gun had battle rattle after less than 500 rounds.

    the final disappointment for me was not the rail gun itself but the colt (semi)custom shop. i called to order a threaded barrel and was told “we don’t do that. you can try Kart or some other manufacturer.” whenever i call the springfield (true)custom shop i am told how long it will take and how much it will cost. i wanted to keep the rail gun all colt but since i could not get the support from their custom shop i traded it away.

    i want to give colt another chance and being a former marine who carried a 1911, i would like to try this new M45; let me know how it works out for you.

    • Since these are personal guns, and given that these are currently in fairly low circulation in the market at large, we are not in the economic position to wear out one of these pistols. If you would like to purchase one for us on which to do destructive testing, we would be happy to put in the work.

      As for the Colt Custom Shop, they do not typically offer the wide variety of custom 1911 work as compared to many other specialized shops. This is not likely to change anytime soon. As an aside, slide to frame fit has very little to do with mechanical accuracy and the benefits of the Colt Rail Gun currently outweigh any perceived decrease in features over the MC Operator.

      • I am all Colt 1911 man until recently to include a Colt Rail gun in two tone. My most recent purchase is a SA TRP which I really like but for the most part I am very satisfied with my Colt’s due to the most actual forged steel parts. I immediately swapped the TRP slide stop for a Wilson Bulletproof model and an Ed Brown original guide rod setup and have put a few hundred rounds through it to include the no mag test I learned here and it passed as my Colt’s did also. The dual spring set up could be a big upgrade once it is proven as I could see a lot of people buying kits to upgrade there current 1911’s. thanks bill

      • thank you for the reply. i am well equipped to run them hard and put them away wet but at the price point of these units i had hopes you could do some of the leg work to help influence my buying decision.

        i understand an a 1911 barrel lockup and bushing fit are more important to mechanical accuracy but i feel tighter tolerances, i.e., less slop, lead to less wear and longer periods between maintenance.

        i am looking forward to information on the dual spring setup and how it performs.

  4. At anywhere between $4000-5000 street price, we do not plan to do any destructive testing on our M45 pistols (which we paid for) for free. The difference in the factory slide to frame fit between the Colts and Springfield MC Operator grade guns are not significant enough to warrant modifications in maintenance cycles. The Colt Rail Gun also exhibits higher build quality and significantly higher quality small parts than the MC Operator.

  5. I have run the Pistol in question extremely hard. The Torture test is at 6,000 rounds. The same as it was some 100 years ago. I don’t know if that was by design or accident. Either way it survived. Some of the initial were run to 20,000 rounds. Changes were made and the platform was improved to USMC standards.

    You have to remember that this is still essentially a Colt Rail Gun.

    I have a had two Rail guns. My partner now sports that one. I still have one which runs as a back up to the M45 now when I go on jobs. I carry the M45 every day in the Patrol Bureau, Uniform Division of the second largest City in New England.
    i had carried a number of weapons over my 32 year career. Berettas, HK, Glocks and Smith&Wesson MP40. I like them all. To me they are a tool in the tool box.

    At the end of the day this is what I have chosen to go to work with. The 1911 is labor intensive. A thinking man’s and woman’s pistol. You reach a point where you understand this and move forward. 1911 is a way of life.
    The M45 has evolved to a point where there is less tinkering for the end user. We will see how this bears out.

    I wrote in a previous article that I took one right off the rack and ran 29 loaded Wilson 7 Round mags. No failures. I at least expected one or two hiccups with a new pistol.
    Unlike most people I travel in harms way every day. I live and work in bad neighborhoods. I have chosen this pistol because of its reliability. When I go off duty this pistol comes with me. I trust it. I run weapons hard.

    I have had lemons before. Trust me, getting rid of 500 pistols wasn’t easy and caused drama. So I have some personal experience with weapons that don’t work.

    If you are lucky enough to purchase a Colt M45 CQBP at a decent price point grab it. You won’t be disappointed.

  6. Springs at full recoil are 19.5. Hope that proves helpful to all who are wondering.

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