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Handguns

Dan Wesson Guardian 1911 Pistol

danwesson_guardian_03aCZ revamped the Dan Wesson 1911 line, and were showing off the new pistols at the 2010 SHOT Show.  The Dan Wesson Guardian was one example.

The Guardian is a commander-sized 1911 pistol chambered in 9mm.  The forged alloy frame has a black “duty” finish, which is the same finish as what is on the Valor handguns mad by CZ.  The rear of the grip is bob-tailed making it easier to conceal.

The sights are fixed tritium three-dot.  The rear sight is ramped so it is less likely to snag on any clothing when it is drawn from behind a jacket or under a shirt.  I prefer to have a hard edge instead of a ramp so I can use it to perform one-handed malfunction drills and reloads more easily.

The Guardian felt good in the hand, and it balanced well.  It is a touch heavier than similar sized, polymer framed pistols from competitors, but that extra weight should make the 9mm recoil darn-near non-existent.  Weight is listed as 1.8 pounds (about 28.8 ounces).

The single stack magazine holds nine rounds of 9mm cartridges.  The barrel is 4.25″.  Nine rounds doesn’t sound like a lot, and I suppose it is not when compared to a Glock or M&P of a similar size.  Nine rounds is not a bad place to start at however.  Cops carried six rounds of .38 Special for decades before the autoloading revolution caught on in the 1980’s.

Dan Wesson lists the MSRP as $1530.  That is a decent chunk of change, and only you can determine if it is worth buying at that price.  I can say the gun feels good in the hand (what 1911 doesn’t?), but it looks really nice in person.  I wish my photos did a better job on the Guardian so you could get a solid feel for the quality in this pistol.

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By Richard Johnson

Richard Johnson is a gun writer, amateur historian and - most importantly - a dad. He's done a lot of silly things in his life, but quitting police work to follow his passion of writing about guns was one of the smartest things he ever did. He founded this site and continues to manage its operation.