By Dave Bahde

The latest in precision-production, threaded-barrel 1911’s from Dan Wesson backs up its name with scary-good performance

Available in 9mm, 45 ACP and 10mm, the Wraith’s forged stainless-steel slide and frame are treated to Dan Wesson’s Distressed Duty finish. Running between the extra-tall Ameriglo night sights—sufficiently high to clear most any pistol suppressor—a serrated top-rib helps kill sight-picture glare. The Wraith’s 5.75-inch match-grade barrel is threaded to the common .45 ACP thread pitch of 0.578×28.

Dan Wesson firearms has been quietly building some of the best 1911 pistols you can buy for years now. Any doubt as to their quality or desirability is quickly dispelled when you find and try one. High demand can make them scarce, but those willing to wait are seldom disappointed. When the chance to test their new Wraith came up I jumped on it.

Suppressed pistols are gaining in popularity, mostly for entertainment, even some hunting applications, but threaded barrels and taller sights are becoming the norm. Shooting suppressed pistols is kind of fun and can be advantageous if you are handgun hunting. They can also be useful for dedicated home defense handguns. One of the best platforms for suppressed shooting is the 1911 pistol and Dan Wesson Firearms has introduced a new 1911 this year to do just that, the Wraith.

Dan Wesson Wraith 45 ACP

Extended grip and thumb safety’s nearly guarantee your ability to get this pistol off-safe in a hurry—even if you happen to get a poor grip while drawing. An extended slide-stop, checkered magazine-release button with carved out access in the grip panel, and a black medium-length trigger round out the controls. Stronger tool-steel components are used in place of the more common and weaker MIM (metal injection molding) parts.

The Wraith is a Government model 1911 using a 5.75-inch threaded barrel. Match grade, it is capable of some serious accuracy. Built from forged stainless steel the slide is adorned with Clark-Style ribs along the top. Ball end mill cuts at the front provide a really nice look, as does a distressed version of their Duty finish. The slide has rear cocking serrations that also look and enhance the carry bevel. AmeriGlo tall sights using a tritium front and single dot rear facilitate suppressor use. A pronounced ledge on the rear sight makes unconventional reloads and stoppage drills possible. The frame includes sharp 25 LPI checkering on the front strap and mainspring housing. Extended grip and thumb safeties are easy to operate with gloved hands. Its beveled magwell is matched to the frame, and stippled G10 grips make for a firm grip in inclement weather. The slightly extended and checkered magazine release is accessed using a moderate “scoop” in the grip. The slide stop is recessed, checkered and slightly extended. The hammer and butt are squared for a nice edgy appearance. The Wraith’s trigger is solid aluminum and mid length to fit most hands. Chambered in 45 ACP it retails for $2,077. Also available in 9mm the price is the same, while the 10mm version costs an extra $300.

Testing

Paired with extended baseplates on the two-included 8-round magazines, a sizeable magazine funnel makes for lightning-quick and fumble-free reloads. The front strap and flat mainspring housing are both cut with sharp 25-LPI checkering, and combined with grippy G10 grip panels and traction is never at a deficit.

Silencerco’s Osprey (www.silencerco.com) was used for suppressed shooting. The Osprey is very light so your handgun does not become barrel heavy. Available in 9mm, 45, and a short version (45) K, it is capable of handling 9mm, 45ACP, 40 SW, and even 300 BLK subsonic using available pistons. It’s one of the quietest on the market and its unique shape and operation often eliminate the need for higher sights.

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