Proud new owner of a Springfield 1911A1. I own an XD9 and I have been on the market for a 1911 since about two years ago. That's about the time I laid my eyes on Springfield's 1911A1 Operator Champion. After much research and many, many countless hours online. I stumbled across the Operator's brother, the Lightweight Champion, which is virtually the Operator sans the "tactical rail" ergo no longer an "Operator." However the sizing and upgrades are identical. I had my heart set on the Operator and was determined to get one... however the past two years have doled out many "item sold" and "item not available" banners. Calls to virtually every gun shop, on at least a bi-weekly basis turned up nothing but used rollover minutes. The same went for the LW Champion... until, the Crossroads of the West show a few weeks ago at the Arizona Cardinals stadium. I went with my wife and son. All of us keeping our eyes focused for the "Unicorn" Operator Champion. After hours of looking at tables full of other fine and worthy 1911's, I found one! or so I thought. The cocobolo wood grips and tactical rail lie before me... with an inch of "extra" barrel. It was the Springfield Operator, but it was the full size, not the Champion 4" barrel that my heart desired. Dismayed and tired of looking for something thought to have existed only in website photographs and european folklore, my eyes caught about a beautiful black and olive drab 1911 that seemed a bit odd. It lay next to the other 1911's and was screaming, "LOOK AT ME!! I am shorter than all my neighbors!" My hand grasped around the slim, checkered rubber grips, and I thought to myself, "This is it." It felt as though it was a part of me. I pulled the hammer back and let out a sigh. There is no feeling like cocking back the hammer of a 1911. Or so I thought... I asked the sales associate kindly, if he could remove the strap and security wire. He did so with no hesitation. Once it was free of its zip tie and prison wire, I held it firmly and directed my eyes down sights. It looked and felt better than any picture or description had try to detail. "I wonder what the trigger pull feels like." I though aloud. "Pull it." He replied. And with an ever so gentle squeeze, the hammer fell, as if it predicted that I was going to tug on its aluminum body. ::rgasmic gasp:: "I'll take it." I murmured. I love my 1911A1 Champion. My fingers hurt from typing, so I will post pics and answer questions as they arrive. To pre-answer some possible questions. I had to wait a week to take it to the range and fire it. It was worth every minute of wait, and every dollar. Fired flawlessly, no FTF's or FTE's. *Note: I DID clean and lubricate before I popped its cherry. Hope you are excited as me. Almost shrilled like a little girl on the way back to car. Enjoy.