Jim Clark Colt long slide in .45 ACP. Clark was a highly decorated and accomplished Marine sniper. He also competed in NRA Bullseye Pistol competition for twenty-eight years, finally retiring in 1975. Clark won the National Pistol Championship in 1958 and is the only civilian ever to accomplish this feat. He won the National civilian title five times. He was the fifth man in the U.S. to break 2600 and the fourth to break 2650. So suffice it to say the man knew a thing or two about firearm accuracy. Jim started pistolsmithing in 1950 and was highly regarded as a true innovators of pistol accurizing. He is responsible for numerous innovations aimed at improving performance of the .45 ACP Colt. He discovered that six inches probably represents the ideal length for the barrel. He began using Douglas barrels that incorporated an integral feed ramp of his own design. This novel concept served two vital purposes: First, it cured a lot of the feeding problems that stem from the juncture between the feed ramp at the upper front of the magazine well and the relieved area at the lower edge-of the chamber. Second, it supported the case head and thus prevented the occasional problem from blown case heads. Clark eventually manufactured such barrels entirely in his own shop. Another Clark innovation was the long-slide conversion, and that came about rather fortuitously. Visiting a war surplus store in Arkansas, Clark came upon an entire oil drum full of GI pistol slides that had been cut in two by the government in the process of deactivating service pistols. Clark bought the entire lot of destroyed slides for a dime apiece and spent the next several years turning them into long slides. With the supply finally exhausted, he had them made from scratch by an outside vendor. Unlike Hoag’s long slides — you can usually see the weld border at the front of the slide. So what is the quintessential Clark in my opinion? A ribbed long slide with tiger tooth front strap. This one shod in Herrett “skip line” D45 stocks. Are they very refined? Not really. How do they shoot? Lights out.



  1. LSWCHP says:

    Putting an aristocrat rib on a 1911 may be effective for improving accuracy, but damn, it makes the gun butt ugly.

    I have an STI Targetmaster which is a longslide with a 3 position sight, but it’s mounted into the slide rather than a full rib on top of the slide so it looks sorta OK.


    1. Shawn says:

      yeah I agree with you there


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