Today, we have the Jim Boland-designed Mitchell Arms Alpha widebody pistol. If certain price-guides can be believed, this was cataloged from 1995 to 1997. However, any escaped from the factory for retail sales it would be news to me.

The Alpha had a weird set of design features. It could be user configured as either single-action, double-action only, or DA/SA. It could also accommodate either its proprietary 10-rd double stack magazine or any standard M1911 single-stack magazine. If you’ll remember, this was also a feature of Boland’s earlier “FK Gun.”

1995 Ad

For the morbidly curious, here is Boland’s patent for the frame:

https://patents.google.com/patent/US5533291A

And here is Boland’s patent for the skirted 10-rd single-stack M1911 magazine shown in the 1995 advertisement:

https://patents.google.com/patent/US5584136A

6 Comments

  1. Shawn says:

    I recall seeing this in literature at the time. My thoughts on it now are the same as back then

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    1. D.E. Watters says:

      It was the Solution to a Problem that no one had? The multiple interchangeable lockwork configurations would have been a QC nightmare for a decent firearms company, much less Mitchell Arms.

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      1. John M. says:

        Browning had their BDM that did that same basic thing, right? Hard to believe that anyone thought that was a good idea, let alone two different companies.

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        1. D.E. Watters says:

          The Alpha apparently had to be reconfigured internally to get the different trigger modes. The Peter Sodoma-designed BDM could be switched immediately between its two modes via a slide-mounted dial. Reportedly, Browning had a potential US Secret Service contract all but wrapped up for the BDM, but they could never get the long-term durability that the agency wanted.

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          1. John M. says:

            Imagine that. The KISS principle joins the other gods of the copybook headings.

            Like

  2. Tom Stone says:

    Iirc Mitchell made a copy of the Luger in stainless steel,
    I looked at one in a LGS and the “Quality” was horrible.
    Gaps and toolmarks everywhere.
    Hands down the worst fit and finish of any handgun I have seen.

    Like

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