It’s often said that, if you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. And this couldn’t be more true of Rob Unger, owner of Roberts Defense. In 2011, Unger had just one goal, and that was to build a quality 1911 using only premium, American-made parts. After receiving a test sample Recon Pro from Unger, I’d have to say that he is well on his way to fulfilling that goal. The Roberts Defense Recon Pro is a full-size 1911 built on a lightweight alloy frame and boasting a host of custom features. When I removed the gun from its custom case, it immediately became clear that this is not just another production gun. This is a pistol that exudes quality! Its fit and finish is second to none, and each of the gun’s attributes make perfect sense for serious 1911 aficionados.
Unger said, “I’ve always had a real strong appreciation for a well-built 1911. I’ve been custom-building firearms for a number of years, and word has spread about my work. With my background of production and machining, I knew that I could build a 1911 that would be extremely accurate and reliable and I’d find a spot in a crowded marketplace. We think we build a product, which exceeds our customer’s expectations. At least that’s the feedback we’ve received. We make sure they get a lot of bang for their buck.”
Roberts Defense machines its frames from forgings. In the Recon Pro’s case, that’s a forging of 7076-T6 aluminum. After the final machining, the frame receives a proprietary anodized coating and then two coats of Teflon. Unger said, “It is a rock-hard coating with excellent anti-friction qualities.” The one thing that impressed me immediately about the Recon Pro is its precise frame-to-slide fit. With the slide in battery, there is not an iota of play between the two parts. Even after I disassembled the gun and put the bare slide back on the stripped frame, I couldn’t find any play, yet the slide moved effortlessly on the rails. Unger told me that they machine the two parts to very close tolerances: “We machine the parts close enough that the slide will just start on the frame rails. Then we hand-lap each frame and slide.” The result is a flawless fit.