Anytime I write about 1911s I get a lot of flak. They just aren’t my favorite guns for self-defense, home defense, or anything else besides range days. The Springfield TRP Operator Long slide in 10mm, however, is a bit different. It’s not a traditional 1911 frame gun. It’s more or less a pistol designed for the outdoors, for dealing with dangerous animals, or for hunting them. This 10mm Long slide is a powerhouse of a gun designed to maximize both power and accuracy from one gun.
This gun is chock full of features and these features lean it more towards that role as a hunting or outdoors pistol. The first clue is the awesome Trijicon adjustable rear sight. It’s fully adjustable for both windage and elevation. It’s also a night sight which is an excellent touch. The pistol’s long barrel offers a much longer sight radius.
The Springfield TRP Operator pushes the sight radius to its limits by pushing the rear sight so far back it’s hanging off by about a millimeter. That extra inch of the barrel also contributes to sight radius of course. The 6-inch barrel can lend between 50 to 100 FPS more to a projectile as well. Not significant, but as Tim Allen says, “More Power!” Long Slide 10mms are quite common in the 1911 realm for a big reason.
The 10mm is a flat shooting cartridge with very little drop even out to 100 yards. Combine that with a long sight radius, the extra inch of velocity, and the 1911’s famed trigger and you have an excellent platform for long-range pistoleros. The Springfield TRP Operator is a high-end 1911 production gun that combines all the right features to produce an amazing long-range pistol.
The TRP Operator Ergonomics
The trigger, sight radius, and caliber are all important features for a long-range handgun, but so is how the gun handles. Ergonomically the gun is a 1911 so it’s hard to screw it up. The grip angle and design is very comfortable, and the grips are outstanding. They are VZ G10 grips. The front and back of the grip also feature Springfield’s Octo Grip. The 10mm is meant to be powerful and you’ll want a tight grip. The Springfield TRP offers you the features necessary to obtain that grip.
The TRP Operator comes with ambidextrous safeties and an extended beavertail which I greatly adore. The 10mm is designed to be a heavy shooting cartridge and the beavertail helps you maintain control over the gun. Pack in some powerful Buffalo Bore or Underwood ammo and you’ll be getting some excellent ballistics as well as control over the weapon.
The grip is thin and svelte as a single stack should be and is comfortable in the hand. It makes a good two-hand grip possible and comfortable to obtain. The front and rear slide are both serrated, and the slide moves as if you placed it on ball bearings. The 1911 has always been an ergonomic design and this gun takes these ergonomics and improves them slightly to better suit the 10mm round.
The biggest issue with the gun is its long slide. This makes the gun feel like the barrel is dipping. It’s off-balance compared to most 1911s. This makes it feel somewhat odd and does require you to compensate for it.
The TRP Operator is designed for accuracy, every little bit of it. The long slide and the match-grade, stainless barrel, the adjustable sights as well as the 1911’s trigger. It all contributes to the overall accuracy of this weapon. It’s exceptionally accurate and very easy to shoot. With a two-handed, unsupported grip I backed off to 75 yards and created a group the size of my hand on a torso sized target.
The TRP Operator is just easy to shoot accurately. The 10mm as a round is flat shooting out to a hundred yards even from a handgun. This pistol is excellent for hunting. You want accuracy like this to ensure you kill your prey quickly and humanely with proper shot placement.
Out of 420 rounds, I’ve experienced one failure to extract due to a bulged cartridge of ammo. That’s it, and as far as I know, that has to be an ammo issue. I don’t think a gun’s reliability can be tied to bulging cases. The gun shoots, extracts and ejects smoothly and consistently. I used mostly tamer target loads but mixed in some 180 grain Buffalo Bore into the mix to try how it handles with more powerful rounds.
The gun itself is a ton of fun. It shoots straight and it’s so satisfying to reach out well beyond my comfort zone of effective handgun range. This is an all-steel gun that weighs a hefty 45 ounces and it eats recoil up. Even the full-powered 10mm loads felt soft and easy shooting. The gun is quite fun, and it satisfies its role as a hunting handgun, or general outdoors tool very well. Now, if there was some kind of brace made for it….