Lightning Review: Springfield Armory Silent Operator

Last month, Adam S. posted about the Master Class Silent Operator from Springfield Armory. Just a couple weeks ago my friend Corey bought one at a local gun shop. Ace Sporting Goods had it for $1,900. Not bad considering the MSRP was reported at $2,195.

The Silent Operator comes in a standard Springfield Armory pistol case.

It even calls out that it is a Master Class pistol.

You get the usual accouterments and two 7-rd magazines.


As Adam noted in his article, the Silent Operator is made in their Master Class custom shop. They have added a mag well to ease feeding of mags. The front strap has been given aggressive checkering.


On top of the slide, Springfield has installed tall tritium Trijicon night sights to help when shooting with a suppressor.

You can make out the Master Class logo etched into the slide just next to the slide serrations.

The barrel is threaded you can attach any .45acp pistol suppressor you want. Just behind the threaded barrel, you will notice the front slide serrations.

We tested the Silent Operator with Corey’s Osprey 45.


The tall Trijicon sights clear the Osprey 45 just fine.


We tested the Silent Operator against my FNX-45 Tactical and a Glock 21. Below you can see his Osprey 45 is older and has the SWR logo engraved into the side.

At first, the Silent Operator was very loud compared to the FNX-45 Tactical. We tried Corey’s Glock 21 as well and it was the loudest out of the three. Corey then thought maybe it was his Osprey45 vs mine that might make the difference. He has had his longer and has shot more through it so we tried it again with my Osprey 45 and the Silent Operator was just as quiet as my FNX-45 Tactical.



The Silent Operator is a great 1911 and it is fun to shoot suppressed. There are not that many 1911s that come with a threaded barrel so this is a nice feature if you like to shoot suppressed like Corey and I. The price tag is a bit hefty but it is a custom shop pistol so I know there was a lot of work done to this 1911 and that helps set this pistol apart from regular 1911s. I’m glad to have Corey as a friend so I get to live vicariously through his gun purchases.

Nicholas C

Co-Founder of KRISSTALK forums, an owner’s support group and all things KRISS Vector related. Nick found his passion through competitive shooting while living in NY. He participates in USPSA and 3Gun. He loves all things that shoots and flashlights. Really really bright flashlights.

Any questions please email him at


  • Don Ward

    *Reads the article title about Springfield*

    Time to break out my favorite “popcorn eating” and “Dis is gonna be good” gifs.

  • Piotr Jan W.

    How much did they pay you for this ‘review’? πŸ˜€
    Wait until end of this month for even better deals on Springfield’s, I recon these will be down to 1,099$. πŸ˜‰

    • BillC

      Still rather buy the FNX-45 Tactical.

  • Ralph Napier

    Springfield Armory is kinda dead to me, now, along with Rock River Arms. :/

    • Anonymoose

      They issued an apology and said they’ll work to fight this law their lobbyists let slide.

      • RSG

        Not good enough. If this bill becomes law…….regardless of their efforts now.

        • spycrab421

          *blinks* uh… what bill did I miss? Been outta the gun loop for a little.

          • Anonymoose

            Springfield and RRA own a lobbying group that made a deal with Illinois Democrats not to oppose their bill to make a state licensing scheme that FFLs will have to go through if passed.

      • Zack mars


      • Rick O’Shay

        They issued it, oh, a whole 3-4 days late. To me that says they consulted with their lawyers first, rather than just owning up to an “oh s$** we had no idea that’s what the law was about.”
        Even then, that tells me one of two things: they’re either liars or they’re ignorant of proposed laws they’re supposedly endorsing. Neither one speaks well to their position.

      • Brad

        I find the “rouge lobbyist” story hard to believe. If I’m paying someone to represent me, I’m dang sure going to be standing over them and make sure that they correctly represent me. Also if this is such a great industry association, why are there only two members on record? Where are ArmaLite and DSA? Why can’t you find IFMA on the web?

        I suspect that this was just another case of “Illinois politics” and they (SAI and RRA) got caught. They probably thought that no one would care or that everyone would be happy for them.

        At this point, SAI and RRA can do all the back peddling they want. Due to either their incompetence or their collusion, SB-1657 passed.

        • Anonymoose

          Ooh, the best part is that this “IFMA” got caught making campaign contributions to Democrats. Story’s on TTAG.

      • QuadGMoto

        It seems to me that this is a case where TFB could do some real journalism. They could write what exactly this bill is, find out what happened and get all sides of the story. If they write a careful, detailed, balanced article complete with a timeline, this could really help clear things up one way or the other.

        • Stan Darsh

          Unfortunately, that will never happen. Springfield Arms is a paid sponsor and TFB won’t do anything to make them look bad.

          • QuadGMoto

            There is always more to a story then what we first hear. So far some of that additional story is that it was a lobbying company that actually made that move, that Springfield and RRA each had a seat on the board. There are a lot of assumptions that both companies knew exactly what was going on as it happened except that separate groups are generally formed to avoid having to do that. On Monday SA slamming what the lobbyist did because they do have a history of 2A support. Yesterday RRA fired the lobbying group and cut all ties.

            You are also assuming that TFB is willing to be dishonest for pay. If that’s the case, we might as well just shut it down right now.

            Let’s not be the crowd from Monty Python’s “burn the witch” skit. We mock the Left for their “fire, ready, aim” behavior. It’s no better when our side does it.

            Update: I just checked Springfield’s web site. They also fired IFMA yesterday.

          • Brian Hert

            From filings, the only members of IFMA were Springfield and RRA. The IFMA board was all Springfield and RRA corporate folks. Check the other stories on TTAG.

          • QuadGMoto

            A board is not responsible for the day-to-day operations of an organization. While it’s normal for one or two members of the board to actually be running the organization’s daily operations and decisions, most of the board members are only updated on such decisions during regular meetings, which are usually no more than once a month.

            Furthermore, both SA and RRA have fired the lobbying group, which means they are no longer on the board or funding them. What more can you expect them to do to punish them for that decision?

          • Kathy

            “SA and RRA have fired the lobbying group…”

            They are the lobbying group. If they pull out it ceases to exist. It was the co-CEOs of Springfield (the Reese brothers), Chuck Larson of RRA, and their paid lobbyist, Keller. There’s no “group” without them! They created and ran the group do to their political bidding. It’s like the NRA disowning the NRA ILA and trying to act like it’s some different thing they don’t know about.

            BTW regarding the political contributions to firmly anti-gun democrats and the Democrat Victory Fund, etc etc, RRA’s Larson was the IFMA’s Treasurer. He was either writing the checks or doing the accounting of funds as they were used. SA’s and RRA’s funds, btw. 100% of the budget of the IFMA was provided by these two companies. Every last dime. Again, the IFMA = SA+RRA. It’s like Ford disowning the Mustang brand haha

            Pull the wool off your eyes, my man.

          • Marshall Eubanks

            I really don’t think Kathy understands how corporate governance works. Suffice it to say that when you create an independent entity, even if you found it and chair the board with your members so that it will serve your interests, the entity may continue to exist after you pull out. That’s just basic corporate ownership practices.

      • Russ Kell

        They issued a CYA. And ‘oh crap, we’ve been found out’. They can suck it.

      • Kirk Newsted

        You mean the lobbyist they paid to lobby for them? Can they explain away the contributions to anti-gun politicians’ election campaigns too?

      • MrApple

        And what if their betrayal of the American gun owner hadn’t come to light? Would they still be apologizing or still secretly pushing for laws that will only work towards increasing their profits?

        To Hell with them.

      • Kirk Newsted

        Kinda late to be fighting it when its already been voted on by the Senate.

        • Anonymoose

          It still has to go through the House.

          • Kirk Newsted

            Yes, the House. 67-51 majority Democrats. Doesn’t take a rocket surgeon to figure out the odds.

          • Anonymoose

            Well, enjoy your new law, and subsequent further rise in crime in Chicago.

      • Julian C

        bullshyte. Screw them. Lying SOBs

    • Kurt Ingalls

      I agree, Mr. Ralph….dead and dead wrong!!!!! I love my beater Mil-Spec, but I’m done with them…….And perhaps I’m old school, but putting a rail on a 1911 instead of a classic dust cover is like putting a penis on a super model…..beautiful hips, big chest…OH G#D!!!!….NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!……I’m just friggin’ sayin’ πŸ™‚

  • AZgunner

    I’m sure these will look great sitting unsold on the shelf while everyone buys pistols from companies that don’t sell us out.

    • Marshall Eubanks

      Somehow Ruger is still going strong, after the (quite a bit more righteous) “boycott Ruger” meme that is still floating around in certain corners of the interweb. I bet you 1 Silent Operator that their sales are virtually unaffected.

      • SB

        Ruger was extremely affected. Just because they didnt outright go completely out of business doesn’t mean it didnt hurt. Lol

  • RSG

    Your friend Corey should’ve waited before buying it. In the next few months you won’t be able to give these away and perhaps he’d been able to save $1500 on it.

    • Nicholas C

      Yeah, sadly we dont have magical crystal balls that see into the future.

    • Marshall Eubanks

      LOL. That’s right, boycott used products; that will REALLY harm Springfield’s bottom line! This level of thoughtful deconstruction is why Ruger (for example) still doesn’t care about the tiny fraction of the gun community who reads blogs: nobody ever stops emoting long enough to form a coherent strategy. I’m sure SA is quaking in their boots right now.

  • Uniform223
    • Anonymoose

      There were too many 1911s in MGS4. The only one I ever used was the Operator. They should have just given it 10-round mags and cut the others, and given the PMC guys P226s or Glock 17s.

  • No one

    A Springfield Armory 1911A1 clone for over $2,000?




    All I needed to hear.

    • Rick O’Shay

      But it has a hammer! Springfield reinvented the hammer! Oh, wait. Wrong gun.

    • B-but it has a threaded barrel and Trijicon sights. That’s how you know it’s a Master Class pistol.

  • BravoSeven

    Nicolas, are the grips smooth or is that a slight dimple effect I see? I’ve been looking at purchasing a Springfield 1911 for some time now but the last few SA 1911s I’ve checked out had very, very rough grips. Was curious if this was common or just some strange anomaly I ran across.

    • Nicholas C

      The grips are probably by VZ Grips. It has slight dimples not too aggressive. Check out Aeroknox Stealth Grips. I got a chance to feel them on a Night Hawk 1911 at the NRA show. Very cool grips.

      • Jared Vynn

        VZ grips are great for gripping the gun, redundant I know, but if you carry they can leave quite the impression (literally a physical impression, ouch) on you depending on holster and carry style. IWB at 2:30 and I had a nice imprint of the grips in my skin and a little bruising.

  • ActionPhysicalMan

    There have been so many Springfield product reviews on TFB since since the licensing bill story broke that I am beginning to associate TFB and Springfield arms. Might be just a coincidence but the human mind associates what it will. I suspect that it is not very bright of you to keep singing praises for Springfield at this time.

    • Nicholas C

      Yeah there are but this wasn’t a gun that was sent to us for review. And this happened weeks before the recent issue. In this particular case, it is a coincidence.

      • Jared Vynn

        An unfortunate coincidence.

        On topic of the handgun I think it would be better to do the upgrades yourself as you not only could save money but also have more control over what goes into it. My old man got a Springfield 1911a1 and nighthawk threaded barrel and magazine well/mainspring housing at a fraction of the cost. But for not having to go through the hassle of fitting parts it isn’t too bad

      • ActionPhysicalMan

        I do believe you. In fact, it was Patrick that went over to their both a two or three days ago and did two articles for them. I don’t think he is a shill for anything but his own sweet gorgeousness though and was probably oblivious to the controversy;-)

    • Thomas Gomez

      We are sent gear to test, and we test it. Our editors arrange the reviews, or like Nicholas said, sometimes we review gear we source ourselves. Our job is to simply evaluate the hardware.

  • BillC

    So, essentially what I am reading is, buy a FNX-45 Tactical.
    1) Cheaper by $800
    2) Holds 8 more rounds
    3) Optics Ready
    4) Not a Springfield

    • Jeff Smith

      TouchΓ© on all points, though double stack .45s tend to be a little big. I have medium sized hands and my HK USP 45 was slightly uncomfortably large.

      My point – SINGLE STACK FNX-45, PLEASE!

  • Spencerhut

    Can we all get over the torx/hex grip screws? Please? Every freaking 1911 I get I have to buy a set of slotted screws for.
    What is with that trigger? Unless you can palm a basketball your 1911 should have a short trigger.
    That said, very nice gun.

    • Anonymoose

      Maybe they should put one of those SVI triggers in it so you can change it to your liking.

  • David L. Willis

    screw Springfield…too little too late…

  • David L. Willis

    a lobbyist, who’s entire source of income is derived from serving the interests of their benefactors, and who’s reputation is the sole deciding factor in future empolyment… just decided to go all rogue and proffer a stance on gun control and made such a gravitas decision without consulting those who pay him to lobby…suuuuuureeeee. What is he, the White House Press Secretary now? I’ve seen lobbyists spend literally two hours back and forth on the phone to clarify the language in a bill that stipulated the implications of the word “will” and “shall” and how it could be construed. But I’m supposed to believe this firm/individual just went on ahead and decided “sure, nobody will read into this at all…let’s just go for it!”…please….

  • GhostTrain81

    Has the word OPERATOR… immediately 1000% more reliable, more accurate, and more tactical.

  • Thomas Gomez

    Good looking pistol.

  • Kirk Newsted

    Nice pistol. Too bad Springfield Armory sold out Illinois gun owners and firearms dealers in exchange for exemptions in a new Illinois bill. Not buying anything from SA or RRA.

  • Django

    The company has proven to be traitorous to the gun culture and any free loving 2nd amendment advocate! No Springfield Armory or Rock River Arms product will ever be purchased by me EVER!

    I still have not bought a single Ruger or Smith and Wesson products since they did the same as Springfield and RRA, in 1994 with the Clinton Gun Ban!

    But I believe the gun community (BIG Difference between gun Culture) will cave in and fall for their B.S. and all will be forgiven! We are our worse enemy; for example still buying 22lr for $50 a brick LOL????????????????

    • RSG

      Can I give you a little info? S&W was owned by a British company at the time of the Clinton collaboration. Ultimately, they sold the company for pennies on the dollar. It’s different owners now, with a completely different outlook. They are great for the 2A. As for Ruger, we all know Bill Ruger was a dirt bag. Death solved that problem. That company has also changed hands since. Now, there isn’t a more customer service oriented firearms manufacturer in the world. Also, they are fierce advocates of the 2A. Different times my friend. Regarding SA and RRA? They can fuq themselves and should be boycotted into bankruptcy.

      • Django

        Can I give you a little info, to your little info?
        Actually the former CEO of S&W Bob Scott who brokered the Clinton deal; bought Smith and Wesson back from Tomkins plc (the English conglomerate) in a deal in which he acquired Smith and Wesson as the CEO of SAF-T Hammer. It was a rouse to make it look like it changed hands because of the backlash. It worked, unfortunately! The acquisition, was called the gnat that ate the elephant; because no one could figure out how a tiny company (SAF-T Hammer), that nobody heard of, with little capital was able to acquire a huge, well known company with lots of capital (Smith & Wesson)?
        As for Ruger, he died in 2002! His son William B. Ruger, Jr., who served as the Chairman of the Company until his RETIREMENT in 2006. Yeah they got punished, LOL!
        So, if Rock Island Armory and Springfield Armory were to sell their
        operations tomorrow would you still buy from them, even if the CEO bought the company back under a different acquisition? At least change the
        name before buying from them! I would not! I still do not buy Ruger nor Smith and Wesson! That is the problem with the gun community!

  • Django

    How any 2nd amendment advocate can ever purchase a Springfield Armory product ever again is mind boggling to me! I personally will never purchase any product made or
    associated with Springfield Armory or Rock River Arms EVER!

    I still haven’t purchased a Smith and Wesson or Ruger product since they BOTH backed the Clinton gun ban in 94’when they pulled the same crap!

    The Gun Community, is the 2nd amendments own worse enemy/advocate! For example, are you still buying 22lr for $45 or more a brick????????????????? I bet in due time all will be forgiven, which is sad because then they will take us for fools; look no further than Ruger and Smith and Wesson!!!

  • Django

    How any 2nd amendment advocate can ever purchase a Springfield Armory
    product ever again is mind boggling to me! I personally will never purchase any product made or associated with Springfield Armory or Rock River Arms EVER!

    I still haven’t purchased a Smith and Wesson or Ruger product since they BOTH backed the Clinton gun ban in 94’when they pulled the same crap!

    The Gun Community, is the 2nd amendments own worse enemy/advocate! For example, are you still buying 22lr for $45 or more a brick????????????????? I bet in due time all will be forgiven, which is sad because then they will take us for fools; look no further than Ruger and Smith and Wesson!!!

    • Marshall Eubanks

      You’re still carrying water against Ruger, huh? Do you think in another 25 years they might finally notice?

      • Django

        You are making my point for me, thanks!

        Maybe IF, everyone WOULD have still “carrying water for Ruger” and you forgot Smith & Wesson! We would not have to be in the same predicament by 2 more companies 25 years later! May be all firearms manufacturers would be on NOTICE, and would have NOTICED, if there was a price to pay? But I guess that is just wishful thinking, I give too much credit to the I.Q. level and lack of hypocrisy on sheep!
        But hey, that’s just me call me crazy? I just do not like giving traitors my hard earned money and then whine when they stab me in the back!

        What is the famous quote by George Santayana: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Looks like the gun community has had a lot of forgetting to undo! LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Gun companies have learned all too well the fickleness of the gun community!

  • RaidenOne
  • MrApple

    To Hell with Springfield Armory!

  • Action45

    Traitors. They can toss it in the trash with the rest of their company.

  • 49joneser

    awesome pistol. too bad I’ll never own a SA product again. they are lowest of the low

  • Gambler X

    Its Illinois, no matter what laws they pass it will still be a violent crap hole and they will continue to blame Indiana for its violence even though their thugs keep showing up here…

  • BlueMarlin Blues

    I love me a nice 1911, but WHO THE HELL would pay this much?!? It’s mind boggling to me. With modern CNC mills there’s no more hand-fitting to justify an outrageous price tag, can someone enlighten me?

  • Paveway

    I dont know what it is called, just the sound it makes when it lies!

  • Julian C

    Springfield can suck it; treacherous, lying scum who not only screwed over the 2A community, but thought that we were all so stupid we wouldn’t even understand what they had done. there are too many GOOD companies we can do business with,m who appreciate our views and our dollars.