By Lars Dalseide | January 16 2013 11:44

Iowa based Volquartsen provides 1911 shooters with a .22 lower alternative

Shot of Volquartsen Custom's new 1911 pistol lower at the 2013 SHOT Show in Las Vegas, Nevada Las Vegas, Nevada - Hard charging firearm aficionados know the name Volquartsen. But for the rest of the public, they probably didn't know anything about them until Dustin Ellermann made his improbably golf ball shot with a Volquartsen .22 rifle on History Channel's top rated shooting show Top Shot. That's when the rest of you took notice.

Based in Carroll, Iowa, this basement based start-up rose from a custom bluing shop into one of the premier 10/22 manufacturers in the world. But they didn't stop there. They went on to make their mark on the rimfire, .22 pistol and .223 field as well. Recently, however, they decided to concentrate on the pistols.

"We doubled our manufacturing facilities, added equipment, machinist and assembly guys to try to keep up with demand," said Volquartsen rep Jarod Menke. "That was for everything, not just the pistols. But the pistols were a project we had on the agenda before the renovations went through."

Action of Volquartsen Custom's new 1911 pistol lower at the 2013 SHOT Show in Las Vegas Odd as it may sound, the newest Volquartsen design project reaches back to a blueprint first seen more then a century ago. The design of a 1911.

"Completely machined out of aluminum," explained Menke. "It will fit any of our uppers."

That's when he produced the lower pictured to the left and above. That is the prototype. The one and only. The sole representative of what Volquartsen will be offering to all of their 1911 loving customers.

"It just came in today. The guys had a little finishing to do on it, but this lower is guaranteed to work on any of our uppers or any compatible uppers that you might have laying around."

According to their research, a great deal of uppers were flowing through the marketplace. But as competitors went from one design to the next, those uppers were ultimately tossed aside in a drawer somewhere. Now you have got an option that doesn't require you to throw parts of your old pistol away.

"People who shoot 1911 should love this because of the frame style," said Menke. "It's cheaper to shoot and still have that same feel and angle to their wrist. But this one is still hot. Hot off the presses."

The innovations, however, did not stop there. For the crew back at Volquartsen came up with a new frame too.

The Volquartsen Custom Scorpion pistol at the 2013 SHOT Show

New frames and threads for Volquartsen Custom MKII-III pistol fans

Change is often met with skepticism. Why improve upon something that already works? Is it change for change sake? Not when it comes to Volquartsen's new MKII and III frames.

The key to the new design is their functionality. The frame, fresh from the factory, fits anything that Ruger MKII or MKIII styled manufacturers are producing by way of uppers. The one you see above is a revamped Volquartsen upper with a stainless steel barrel inside they is terned down the middle to take the weight out of it.

That may cause a bit of concern for some of you out there, but fear not. The rest of the barrel does not go unsupported. Instead, the original thickness of barrel is returned as it nears the end in order to protect the integrity of the design. And the threaded muzzle threads turned a few heads as well.

"They all come with 1/2X28 muzzle threads," said Menke. "That seems to be what everyone wants now."

Threaded barrel of the Volquartsen Custom Scorpion pistol at SHOT Show

And if you can provide the people with the same technology that allowed Dustin to make that golf ball shot, they will probably want a whole lot more from Volquartsen.

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