Kimber Solo Carry 9mm 1911 Style Pocket Pistol

Kimber America

When someone tells you that a 17oz. 9mm feels like a 1911, generally you aren’t going to believe them. When that someone is Kimber, you kind of have to. This is a company that lives and breaths 1911s, and when you look hard at this little tiny “Solo Carry 9mm” you can see that the grip angle is in fact a direct descendant of the 1911 feel. Only two fingers are going to fit around this little guy, but only two fit around the Colt Mustang 380, so there is precedent.

The details in the video leave out some very important points. This is a striker fired gun with an aluminum frame, stainless steel slide and one constant single action trigger pull. Issues like reset and and recoil will have to wait for a full review of the gun, but starting with the fact that it is a Kimber gives you a good idea that it is probably a winner. They don’t do a lot wrong.

One of the things I like about the gun is that it has an ambidextrous safety and magazine release in the same places that you find them on a 1911. If dropping this safety is as natural as it is on a 1911, all those 1911 fanatics out there will have themselves a new pocket pistol.

Run the numbers on this gun and it could be that Kimber is right that the Solo is in a class by itself. It is 17oz. empty, 3.9” tall, 5.5” wide, 1.2” thick (including the safeties) and holds 6 + 1 of 9mm. If it really also feels like a 1911 and the controls work like a 1911 I don’t know that there will be a gun on the market that will compare for firepower and usability. The MSRP is $725, and best in class is relative to price of course. But compared to the other high end pocket pistols out there I don’t think it will have an equal. I look forward to shooting this great looking little gun from Kimber.

{ 99 comments… add one }
  • Scott November 8, 2014, 11:53 am

    48 rds thru my solo cdp and a grip screw fell out in my hand, lucky i held on to it.
    Tightening the rest of the screws revealed a bigger issue, the blind nut on the laser side gets pressed into a hole with small teeth which grip the steel blind nut, when the screw got tightened the first time the blind nut got pulled out and stripped the teeth off in the frame, frame is now useless and waiting for kimber to make a determination about replacement of this $1100.00 gun, im a bit disappointed as this was not a cheap gun and im weary of a replacement with the same issue, lets hope not.

  • Alec October 13, 2012, 11:33 pm

    I have had a Solo for most of this year, and I like the pistol just fine now. My first experience was a number of FTEs, a stovepipe or two, and a few failure to feeds. I bought one of the first pistols to get to town, so I had one of the first after the short initial production run by Kimber. I also had the roll pin come out of the ambi safety, losing the safety temporarily in the grass. Luckily I found the parts minus the roll pin, and headed home. I sent the pistol back to Kimber who quickly replace the barrel, roll pin and slide. What came back was a completely different pistol in reliability. Shoots everything I feed it without problems until I received the 8 round magazine. Back to the drawing board on that one. Some of the same feed problems came back, but only with that magazine. It also was an early production run. Kimber also sent me some spare roll pins just in case they eased out again.

    Long story, but I now have a pistol that works with the 6+1 mags perfectly, and not so for my 8 round extended grip mag. That mag makes a pretty gun really ugly, I must say, but it is comfortable in the hand. The concept of the extended mag for a full hand grip is a winner, but the execution is not, at least with the one I currently have. Maybe they will get that right as well very soon.

    I have the Kimber CDP II ultra as well, and after a few early on FTFs, sent it back for a free feed ramp polish, and it is now very reliable following the custom shop fine tuning it. I also have a full size Custom Classic, $700 Kimber that is as fine a pistol as I have ever owned for accuracy and reliability. It is perfectly reliable with Ed Brown, Wilson, or Baer magazines. I love the Ed Brown mag with the rounded steel follower. I have not had good results with the factory mags, or Shooting Star mags.

    If you are having trouble with 1911 Kimbers, try a high end magazine before you decide that the gun is the problem. If that doesn’t work, Kimber is really fast in making it right on an individual basis, and returning it. The guns are really tight, and do take a little time to break in.

  • David September 30, 2012, 2:15 am

    My experience with the Solo runs about 100 rounds so far. These included 124gr S&B ball; 124+P Golden Saber Bonded; Cor-Bon 115gr +P; Speer Gold Dot 124 +P; and Winchester 127+P+. All have worked perfectly though obviously not a lot of rounds fired yet. The other posters who stated “make sure you engage that little slide stop spring when reassembling” are absolutely right. I usually push it outward from the interior of the mag well to make sure it protrudes enough for the slide stop to engage it when pushing it into place.

    For me, so far, it’s a pocketful of blues for anyone on the receiving end.

  • big al June 11, 2012, 10:53 pm

    Bought the solo,cleaned it,slide locked on almost all breakin rounds,called kimber,they said to check the lockpin
    the ran perfectly , no failures.used 147&124 grainthen decided to push it and shot 50 rounds 115 grain winchester
    round nose;no failures flawless. Large 3 dot sights very accurate 6 for 6 at 15 yards when i took my time.will move further out when I get used to the gun. Over 1000 fps. with defence ammo don’t no anyone that can throw that fast
    keltec p11 is ok i owned 1 horrible trigger 11 lbs. Solo trigger is great. Love this gun.will be my full time carry.

  • Jim April 8, 2012, 1:38 pm

    I don,t see what you need a pocket pistol for? Its range is arms lenght, so my guess is the heaver it is after 25 feet you are going to have to throw it to do any good because with that short of a barrel you could not hit the brod side of a barn. If I pull a 1911 colt 45 APC 5″ barrel out of my holster and point it at you? You going to think about it!!! or are you going to run. The point of carry is to protect yourself. A picture is worth a thousand words.

  • Terry April 6, 2012, 4:05 pm

    Well I’ll tell ya. The nerve of some people. Trying to tell people that the Kimber Solo is a good pistol. Hell, everybody knows that Kimber pistols are junk. When you compare one to a solid pistol like maybe a kel-tec or one of those nice pistols made down there in Miami, there is absolutely no comparison. And then, someone said it looked similar to the 1911. Man, if it don’t look exactly like a 1911, don’t try to advertise that it does. That is false advertising. We need to run off the next guy who comes in here trying to tell us that the Solo is a decent pistol, and ban him for life! Well, I just was reading all of your replies, and wanted to get my 2 cents in.

    Catch yall on the flip, Terry

    • Administrator April 6, 2012, 5:07 pm

      the first run was very ammo sensitive but we are hearing better reports these days.

  • Jeff H. March 24, 2012, 3:39 pm

    When my Solo was brand new, it would eject the mag after one or two shots. Two months later I got it back. Mag catch has been redesigned or something. Now that part is perfect. Then, after about 150 rounds, I found that the locking lugs in the slide had started peening, leaving little shavings in the gun. Back it went. When I got it back this time, it had a new slide and barrel. The new slide had a slight bevel where the peening had occurred. No failures since, about 200 rounds. You CAN’T limp-wrist this pistol, it needs every bit of help to cycle. I tried to fire it with one hand, held less than tightly. Fail. Tight one handed grip or two handed, no problems.
    Tip: Leave the mags full for a day or two before trying to use the pistol. I had NUMEROUS failures in cycling until I figured this out. Yes, the 6th round is a bear to get in. They do loosen up though, and keeping the mags full when not shooting is a big help.

  • Ted March 19, 2012, 7:09 pm

    The weight has everything to do with the gun failing to eject that’s why the instructed you to use 124 grain.

  • Bob D. March 17, 2012, 11:08 am

    I’ve purchased one of these hard to get Kimber “Solo’s” … One great shooting CCW, without failure of 150 rounds. Interesting thoughts, I tried chambering Speer hollow points, and they wouldn’t chamber. However the Federal’s shoot perfectly, as suggested by the manufacturer (Kimber).

    Proves once again you get what you pay for … And/or what’s you life really worth in carrying something that may not fire when your life depends on it.

  • Bob D. March 14, 2012, 10:34 pm

    I purchased the Kimber Solo about two weeks ago, and it shoot flawlessly, and without any jams or hangups … Shooting ammo in the 118 grains. I tried loading Speer hollow points with them not chambering. So I purchased some Federal Hydra-shok with these chambering perfectly, and shooting the same way.

    I would highly recommend anyone that wants a quality firearm in buying the Kimber Solo.

  • mike February 17, 2012, 1:04 pm

    Ok, here is a question? Would you buy a suit without first trying it on and making some alterations, if necessary? No, correct? The why in the hell is their s***pots full of people laying out 7-800 dollars for a pistol that they have never even put in their hands? I went to a gun shop in San Antonio the other day. He said they had 190 on back order with all having paid the full price up front. I inquired as to whether these same people had actually touched the pistol. He answered that 99% were buying the gun without ever having seen one or fired one just relying on Kimbers good name. I thought ” What a bunch of rank johnny-come-lately’s”. What kind of person would buy presumably a concealed carry pistol for protection of their life without ever having tried it for size and fit?

    Wait, come to think of it, maybe this is a good thing because these same people, once they get them, will go shoot it and roughly 50% will decide it is too small or too large or some other friggin reason and will go to a gunshow/shop and sell it for a fraction of the purchase price and then guys who are patient like me will get a chance to look at it, touch it, and then maybe buy it/not buy it. Either way, we wont have wasted our money.

  • Bryon wilkinson January 2, 2012, 11:39 am

    My s/s Kimber solo has just come in now it’s time to see if all you people know what your talking about will post soon

    • John January 5, 2012, 7:05 pm

      John says:

      Very nice looking and good handle ability for it’s size. Although, Problems. Sear spring end fell off shelf in rear of frame during fire rendering firearm inoperable, Kimber says they have only had this problem one time. one too many I say. Extractor will not pull spent shells out of chamber consistently causing a jam. I lock open the action, pull the clip and simply tip the gun upward and dump the spent round. (it is not stuck) Expansion pin securing trigger into the frame slowly works itself out during fire.
      I am currently sending back to Kimber. Will post results at a later date.

  • Bimmerland December 24, 2011, 9:33 pm

    Think I’ll wait for the new Sig P938 since my P238 runs flawlessly. I too use Hornady Critical defense with no issues. As far as stoppiing power the P938 should be equal to the Solo hopefully with better reliability. Did I mention my Sig has real 3 got sights.

  • Bob November 4, 2011, 10:13 am

    The slide on my new Solo is extremely difficult to operate. My wife cannot use it at all and I takes all my strength to do it. I bought it for my wife to carry, but since she cannot operate it, I’ll have to sell. Anyone else having that problem? My fault for not trying it out at the store.

  • Bill Harris October 28, 2011, 11:51 pm

    I tried the Critical Defense 115gr and the slide continued to lock all the way back as with the other ammo. Does Hornady make it in a 124 or 147gr ?

    • Administrator October 29, 2011, 7:42 pm

      They make a 124gr. TAP and a 147gr. custom. You may have to buy them online though. If the 115gr. Critical Defense isn’t fixing it, the gun probably needs to go back to Kimber. No point wasting ammo and frustration on it.

  • Bill Harris October 27, 2011, 8:22 pm

    I bought a new Solo and couldn’t wait to get to the range. Using the Kimber recommended ammo ( both 124 and 147 gr) I
    I fired 100 rounds and had 88 malfunctions. No jams per se, but the slide would lock all the way back after nearly every shot just as if the clip were empty. I’m disappointed to say the least. Any suggestions would be welcome.

    • Administrator October 28, 2011, 8:52 am

      Try Hornady Critical Defense. It will work fine.

  • Chris October 23, 2011, 7:25 pm

    I just purchased a Kimber Solo. I shot about 75 rounds through it so far and am not impressed. Not one clip went through with out at least 3 rounds failing to extract. Has anyone had issue like this? I tried Remington and Winchester factory loads both FMJ and JHP. The ammo was not the heavier bullet weight that Kimber recomends but I don’t think that the failure to extract would have anything to do with a lighter bullet.
    Any help would be appreciated. I bought this for my wife for carry… So far I have no confidence in its reliability should she ever need it. My cheap KelTec PF9 works flawlessy in comparison.

    • Administrator October 23, 2011, 10:51 pm

      Use Hornady Critical Defense in it and it will work perfectly. I have “fixed” several of them with it.

  • Samantha October 17, 2011, 4:00 pm

    The Solo is on my wish list. I’ve been carrying a Ruger LCP with the Crimson Trace since they came out. My husband has a Kimber Ultra CDP II that he used to carry all the time in a holster on his back. After I got my LCP and we had range time with it he decided he wanted one as well and now in situations where he can’t carry his Kimber he puts the Ruger in a pocket holster and carries it.

    When we saw the Solo after I had it in my hand I told him I had to have it! Hopefully when I get it he doesn’t shoot it and decide he needs one of them too! I love shooting his Ultra CDP II and if the Solo feels anything like it I’m sure I’ll be in heaven. I guess if he figures he has to have one also then he can sell of his Glock (since once he got the Kimber the Glock became “mine” but it is way to big for my little girly hand).

    My daughter will be 21 in January so she’ll likely inherit my Ruger LCP so I have an excuse to go ahead and give myself the Solo for Christmas.

    • Pepper December 20, 2011, 1:43 pm

      I also carry the Ruger LCP. No crimson trace though. I hope you have your name on a waiting list for the Solo, because they are few and far between. I’ve been waiting for one since they came out. I had my hands on the first gun they received, but didn’t know anything about it, so I went home to research it. It was gone in a flash. My name was 3rd on the waiting list at our Cabelas. I finally got my call yesterday, but to my dismay, it had the crimson trace on it and was almost double in price. I had to pass. It’s very discouraging, since this is only the 3rd Solo that our Cabela’s has received in their store, and there is no way to know when another one will come in.

  • Chuck October 15, 2011, 3:43 pm

    I have owned a lot of handguns and most have been very reliable when properly maintained and used correctly. Kimber’s are machined to very tight tolerances, hence the need for the break in period. Also cheap ammo or reloads using a “dirty” powder will mean more attention will be required when cleaning the weapon. Many people think that because of the price of the gun or the name of the manufacturer the gun should work every time without fail with no work required on their part. According to my military records I am a small arms expert and I have had problems with many weapons the first time used. Most of these “problems” were my fault, not the weapons.

    You carry a handgun for the purpose of defense and protection of you family and yourself. Read the manual that accompanies the weapon, get some training,and practice, practice, practice. Don’t tell stories about how proficient you are with a handgun or say things like “it isn’t my fault the gun won’t work”. Neither of these can be verified on the internet. You might also want to ask yourself, “What is my life and those of my wife and children worth?” before deciding which weapon system or systems to use as your primary or back-up means of defense when away from home.

    Most of us don’t rely on statements on internet blogs regarding the merits of one gun over another. We talk to friends or go to a trusted source like “American Handgunner”, “Shooting Times”, etc… and read the reviews. Every review I’ve read has been positive concerning the Solo. As for its similarity to the 1911, it has the same grip angle and all the pertinent control mechanisms are in the same place as those on the 1911.

  • jim September 29, 2011, 6:55 pm

    Im not a big fan of small handguns. But my evryday carry piece is a Kahr K-9. Absolutely the worse trigger i own!!! Its never had a miss feed or jammed. Actually have shot USPSA courses with it. ITS A TOOL!!! and it works every time.

  • Jeff September 28, 2011, 9:04 pm

    I bought a Solo today and tried 5 different kinds of ammo (including both types Kimber reccomends for the gun), short story is – if you want a single shot breach loading small 9MM – this gun is for you. It scares me that I get better performance out of my Dimond Back DB9 at 1/2 the cost, and it will feed any ammo I put in it. I own 5 other Kimber .45’s and have never had any problems from any of them. The suggestion that the shooter is the problem with the Solo’s function is untrue in my case. It seems to me to be a problem with the magazine improperly feeding the round. I will be sending mine back to Kimber in the morning. Nothing quite so wonderful as spending more than $700.00 on a gun that has to be sent back to the factory the day after it was purchased. No matter what else happens, this gun is going to be a blackeye for Kimber.

  • Steve September 24, 2011, 3:10 am

    I looked at most of the guns mentioned in this article, and ended up purchasing a Kel Tec PF9. This little gun is awesome and less than half the price of the “gourmet” guns mentioned here. It is realiable and accurate. No one would be niave enough to say that kel tec is handsome or pretty, but they are reliable, with a lifetime warrenty. This is the 4th Kel Tec I have purchased and all have functioned extremely well. Don’t discount them just because they are in expensive. They supply a much broder niche than either kimber , Sig, or Kahr.

  • melv September 6, 2011, 11:53 pm


  • Bob K August 21, 2011, 2:46 pm

    I called my firearms store about every two weeks until they told me that two solos had been delivered. I put both on hold
    (one for me, one for my best shooting buddy) and picked them up a few days later. I already own three Kimbers (Target II in 45, target II in 38 super and the 22) and enjoy all of them. I had sold a Smith & Wesson Model 340 in 357/38 due to
    excessive recoil and the resultant inability to hit anything and was looking for a small carry gun. I realize there are a lot of
    them out there, but my Kimber’s have been most satisfactory in all areas so the Solo sounded good to me. The gun was so
    tight when new I had to pull hard to get the slide back and if you loaded (which was very hard) the magazine to capacity it was very hard to remove. It is loosening up as I shoot it and I am impressed with the accuracy. The trigger is very smooth
    and certainly proper for a carry gun even though I prefer light triggers. It has shot everything I fed it with no problems and that includes the non-recommended lighter loads. Dis-assembly and re-assembly are getting easier as I get more familiar with the firearm. Is it perfect, nope and I don’t think I will find one that is, but mine is very, very good.

  • John H August 14, 2011, 7:38 pm

    The solo is clearly modeled after the Colt 1903 not the 1911. The 1903 was a cool concealable waist gun for its day and I’m glad Kimber decided to manufacture an updated more powerful copy but they should not refer to it in any way as a 1911.

  • KImber1983 August 8, 2011, 3:25 pm

    I have owned 5 kimbers – 2 stainless II, 1 ultra stainless, 1 procarry HD and 1 BP10. all of them have never never jammed, stove piped, FTE, FTL or dropped a mag. i recommend these guns to all of my family and have bought my brothers, dad and sister one of their own. Never have i had an issue with any type of ammo, mag, or safety issue. my stain on the BP 10 messed up once (due to my error) and kimber restained it for free and was back at the range in 7 days. I will def buy me a new SOLO because im loyal to a product that has protected me for 8 years. I own 4 sigs as well, 226 .357 sig, 232 stainless, 238 and 220 stainless, let me put it this way, if it isnt a Sig or a Kimber, i usually wont buy it. Ive had 4 glocks, 2 HKS (which i loved) and still have 2 S&W (SW1911 and a 357 snub nose. I refuse to own plastic guns and kimber BP 10 is the only one i made an exception for. i trust that by the time the SOLO is in high circulation, all the “kinks” will be work out and frankly, at this point, its too close to the release of the weapon to start making judgment calls. I will repost once i have it in and will give my outlook on how it works. Until then, keep the premature judgments and “name calling” until you get a production model in full swing in your hand.

  • that damn storm guy June 26, 2011, 11:58 pm

    wow, what an arrogant admin. hey, i have an r9 carbon fiber. you probably do not. LOL! what a silly thing to say. makes me wonder if you are completely full of it or perhaps a west point cadet full of pride. now im making assumptions.

    my first solo was sent back. the locking lugs on the barrel and the upper receiver were peeing to the point that it lost all accuracy. it would rarely let me load the weapon with a full magazine and would sometimes lock up and need a good whack ON SOMETHING HARD to come alive again. i trust it as far as i can throw my wife. thankfully, kimber has great customer service which they will be needing with this model. by the time i sent it back the locking mec was shot, it had no grouping, locked up, would not load, missing a grip screw and had tons of scratches on the soft aluminum lower. the paint they used reminded me of the commie cz 75 gunmetal spraypaint only it was about as durable as marking paint on glass. kimber sent me a brand new pistol after i showed them where it was carried and how i depended on it for work. i like to think they would do this for anybody. as soon as i received the new pistol i put it up for auction. this is the kind of stuff that can get you killed. kimber made some nice weapons in the past. i own many of them. i even have a really nice svt. the newer ones are really getting popped off fast. i dont care what you collectors think. in the real world, they are no different than any other mass produced chunk of steel that goes bang and the solo is a deadly chunk of crap that belongs at the bottom of the sea.

    fix bayonets


    • Administrator June 27, 2011, 3:21 pm

      What?? West point? Can you get me in there? What did I say to warrant this?

  • Joe A May 28, 2011, 5:07 pm

    I think guns are much like cars it becomes personal choice and once you own a certain brand if you have no problems you stick with that brand.I own a Kimber ultra carry and a Sig 9mm and a Tuarus 9mm and love them! Never had any problems with any of them! If you own a chevy you can always find fault in ford it is the same with guns if you own a Kahr you can find fault with Kimber! Buy what you like and don’t worry what someone else has to say about your choice of guns! It is all about what works for you!

  • JSP May 12, 2011, 5:31 pm

    I bought a new solo last month. Every time it was fired the Mag dropped and would not feed. Kimber replaced the mag catch, no more problems. To Kimber and back in 10 days Twice as fast as S&W

  • John Wayne April 24, 2011, 3:37 pm

    Does the Colt Mustang or Sig P 238 fit anywhere in here ????

    • John Wayne April 24, 2011, 3:47 pm

      I don’t about you – but these guns are getting too small, too much plactic, and cheaper …………smells like “BAD NEWS”………to many small springs…….too many things to go wrong…..I still like the OLD J frame revolver’s..if it goes click – all you got to do is pull the trigger again…it’s always rotating…………….i’ll pass on the springs and plactic……………except on the Range……….

      • Pepper December 20, 2011, 1:26 pm

        My husband and I were the only two with revolvers in a class. On range day, we were reloading half of the time, while the rest of the class were shooting. We both had the speed re-loaders. I put my revolver away after that class.

  • DJ April 23, 2011, 12:03 am

    Well, all gun makers have their own problems . But my Kimber Pro Ageis (9 mm) and Sig p238 work well as others. Maybe the problem is how to hold or handle the gun when you shoot and lubrication. I intend to buy the Kimber Solo because my Sig P238 is only 380 cal. Just want more power and the gun looks good but it doesn’t look like 1911 style like my Sig P238. Some guns are just like luxury cars and sometimes you can see one breaks down and rattle, it’s true. Not all guns are perfect.

  • Gabirel April 4, 2011, 4:05 pm

    I don’t understand how anyone can compare a 380 to the 9 mm. Yes the diameter is the same but the ballistics are in different classes. I shoot both and yes they may seem similar and I wouldn’t want to be shot by either, but they are not the same. A +P 380 may reach supersonic speeds with a 90 gram projectile but you pay for the extra punch and most 380s wouldn’t take that much beating. Supersonic is the norm for 9 mm at 124 grams and lighter.

    “1911 like,” is a reference to the squared grip at a 90 degree angle to the barrel and use of a thumb safety. It has to do with general feel of the shooting experience.

    As far as problems, I have had problems with one of my Glocks and a Walther PPKS until I got them fixed by a gunsmith. So I know it happens. Any gun maker can release clunker. That’s where customer service makes the difference.

  • Rob H March 29, 2011, 10:53 am

    I do like my Kimber, but, I have known them to have issues at times.

    I purchased a Kimber Ultra carry 1 from a coworker, (who got it in a trade and had bever fired it) and had serious issues with it, it was one with the external extractors, damn thing would FTE on about half the rounds fired, no matter the brand of ammo. I contacted Kimber, and they serviced the pistol, replacing the old UC 1 slide with a new UC 2 slide. it has been flawless ever since. the pistol looked brand new when I got it, in hindsight, I can see why, previous owner had a repetitive stress injury from working the slide clearing failure to extracts and didn’t shoot it…

    When my wife and I were taking our CC class years ago, the fellow in the lane next to us had a brand new full size Kimber. the only 2 people on the range that day to have problems with weapon failures, was the Kimber, and an old man with an ancient chrome plated .25 acp. damn sad when your not as reliable as a 25 auto pos.

    A brand name doesn’t tell the entire story, every maker has “issues” on occasion, but Kimber does seem to have more problems than it should. I love my Kimber, but it sure as hell didn’t live up to the name out of the box.

    I also have a SIG P238, I have owned several SIG’s over the years, and they have all been rock solid as far as reliability goes. even the little P238 which was supposed to be finicky during break-in, shot flawlessly out of the box. if you want a micro 1911 for CC, it doesn’t get any better than a P238. I just wish it was in 9mm.

    if I purchase another 1911 for self defense, sad to say, odds are it will not be a Kimber. to many brands out that have a better track record for reliability in my book.

    • Ray March 31, 2011, 8:34 pm

      Rob, I wish one of my two P238s worked. The first one was broken-in with 300 rnds of Lawman and American Eagle FMJ 95 gr factory new. I sent it back because the 6 rnd mag wouldn’t feed my Federal HP ammo. I also had a few FTE, FTF in everybox with the 7 rnd mag. Empty casings ejected back too close to my face. When Sig received this gun, they replaced it because they discoverd “frame damage at the trigger pivot”. That brings me to gun #2, the new replacement sent by Sig. After 50 rnds during which I got 2 stovepipes and 2 failures of the trigger to reset, they suggested I send it back. That’s where it rests now. They also switched me from the Crimson Trace LG-492 to the CT 238 TGL. Not happy getting a cheaper laser and one where the power switch is not on the grip.

  • David March 26, 2011, 2:28 am

    I too had a Kimber Custom Shop .45 ACP that jammed often enough for me to
    lose confidence in it. Sold it and got an SR9, and the Ruger hasn’t jammed in
    500 rounds so far. I wouldn’t feel confidant owning another Kimber. I’ll stick
    with Glocks and Rugers.

  • Kirk March 25, 2011, 1:49 am

    Really like the looks of the Kimber, but the Ruger LC9 seemed like much better value (having just given away a Taurus 709 about which the less said, the better). After about 400 rounds of S&B 115 and 124 gr, performance has been near flawless (I’ve never fully understood the ‘break-in’ period concept for a properly designed gun). If I find $800 burning a hole in my pocket, I might acquire a Kimber since I prefer SA and the LC9 is DAO, but after the Taurus, I’m happy.

  • Mike March 14, 2011, 8:57 am

    Of course this is all opinion but bashing one gun to another is useless. Kahr is an excellent firearm and they carved there niche along time ago so has keltec. We are fortunate to have options. It is a matter of what a person feels comfortable with or it may be the price.

  • smokey March 13, 2011, 3:11 am

    Kimber is the only way to go, most of the feed problems that you all are having are usually due to shooter error. I have not run into any problems with any of the kimbers i have owned or fired. Kimbe IS the best, and is known for it for a reason! If you have never fired one CORRECTLY, you don’t know a damn thing about the quality that beats all others. Kimber is a flawless gun maker, you know that immediately when you pick one up, nothing can compare to the feel and the quality in the price range of a kimber, regardless of model. Take my word for it, if you buy one, you will not be dissapointed. I think most of the feed problems are due to people who have no idea how to shoot a gun that is a “real firearm”, not a plastic or cheap piece of shit.

    • Hammer March 13, 2011, 11:34 pm

      The only way to negate someone else’s experience with an identical brand and model is if both came out matched. I have seen friends who have qualified expert and own a dozen handguns who have had a similar failed experience with a kimber, yet a great experience with a different Kimber, same model. Every manufacturer (not just guns) have some blowback; Kimber less than most. But they too have their problems, otherwise they wouldn’t have customer service staff answering a customer service phone with a customer service return / repair policy. I love Kimber…but I don’t insult others because of a brand…

    • John Moses March 14, 2011, 2:14 am

      I have owned well over 100 handguns from every maker in business and many now defunct. 15 1911’s. 2 Wilson’s, 2 Colt’s, 9 Springfield’s and 2 Kimber’s. Even owned a Star BM in 9mm(1911 style) Only the 2 Kimber’s were problem children. 10 failure to feed or eject properly per every 50 rounds, sometimes more- rarely less. Never had any problems of this sort with any other brand…had a Skyye 9mm that had the hammer break in half after a few dozen shots. Horrible time getting a replacement. Kimber works for some people, not for me. Never again. No operator error. Too many thousands of rounds fired from a myriad of other pistols from high end to cheap to buy that crap. Have owned 3 AMT back-ups including one in 45 that are notoriously difficult to shoot and suffered no failures…just too heavy. Kimber’s are too expensive for ME to gamble on. Owning 2 is pretty fair chance for them to get one right. They could not and I won’t take a chance again. My Springfield TRP is hand’s down the best 1911 I have owned for the money.

    • Eggman February 2, 2013, 4:39 am

      I first carried 1911s when I was in the military, then they transitioned to the Baretta 9mm. I have owned and carried a Kimber Compact CDP for 16 years. Probably 3000+ rounds through it and, apart from replacing the springs after 14 years, just for good measure, it has worked flawlessly. Definitely the most accurate and pleasurable gun I have ever shot. Bit large for carrying in some conditions so, after trying most subcompacts and micros out there, I decided to purchase a Kimber Solo CDP with the Crimson Trace lasergrips. It is an amazing piece of engineering and definitely the most accurate of all the subcompacts and micros I’ve tried, as well as a pleasure to carry. I am very happy that I invested the extra money for such a quality, reliable weapon.

  • M. Daniels March 11, 2011, 3:38 pm

    I have had 2 Kimbers – a Crimson Carry and a Ultra Raptor. The Crimson Carry has been flawless and the Ultra Raptor has been absolute crap. In fact, I’m going to try and sell it because it stovepipes all the time. I have tried about 10 different brands of hollow point and FMJ ammo, fired over 1000 rounds through it, tried new magazines, and even had a gunsmith polish the feed ramp.

    My neighbor recently bought the Solo and let me shoot it – the damn thing couldn’t handle the Hornady Critical Defense ammo which Kimber claims it can handle all sorts of premium hollow points. It failed to feed twice in about 50 rounds. This seals it for me – I will never buy another Kimber, but I will say that my Crimson Carry has been flawless for me. Your mileage may vary.

  • Jay March 11, 2011, 6:19 am

    I just recently purchased a Solo. Used high end defense ammunition (As it said on the website) and it would only feed every other round. But, not only would it not feed properly it would get jammed half cocked and I had to find a slim screw driver to push the rounds down in the magazine to release it. Lastly, I took it a part to clean it, after I was finished up I put the retaining pin back in place and now the slid wont go all the way forward. I work at the sporting goods store I bought it from and going to take it back. I have never owned a kimber, but always heard of their reliability, starting to doubt that now. Thinking about just getting my money back and going with a Kahr pm9.

  • R Sloan March 2, 2011, 3:28 am

    I have had three Kimbers over a period of about fifteen years. I have fired over 4000 rounds through one of them without a misfire. The other two have never misfired either but have not had many rounds through them (about 1500 through one and maybe 300 through the other one). I traded a Colt Gold Cup for my first Kimber when I was having trouble with the Colt. I had a KelTec 9mm for about two weeks and traded it for the last Kimber (Ultra Carry 2) because the KelTec couldn’t get through more than a couple clips without a malfunction. A friend has a Kahr 40 cal that has given him unending problems. There is a Solo in my future. I wouldn’t even consider another brand.

  • John Moses February 26, 2011, 7:25 pm

    I have owned something from every maker in the market from Colt to Sig, H/K,Wilson Combat, etc. Have owned 15 or so 1911’s. The only ones that would not work were the 2 Kimbers I bought at the same time. One a TLE2 and a Micro 45. Neither worked and after several trips back to Kimber were traded away at a loss, of course. I will not buy from them again. I do not know how they could ever convince me to buy from them. Maybe if a hard up friend sold me one so cheap it was unbelievable I would, but never for full asking price. The solo looks interesting but only if it came with a 100% money back guarantee including shipping and ammo cost.

    • Richard March 21, 2011, 5:06 pm

      Amen. I am glad someone else has had the same experience. I too have owned many different 1911s from Colts, to Wilsons to Sig as well as having the displeasure of picking up 2 different Kimbers. (One I tried new/GI Special and the other some special Olympic Team Gun that a friend sold as he needed money very badly) Both of these were terrible as far as jams go and I am still puzzled at the great name Kimber has in the industry. I am semi-interested in this Solo but wary since Kimber’s name is on it.

      • David Lancello March 30, 2011, 10:01 pm

        I am new to this site but not to the 1911. I compeated with a 22cal Colt conversion at age 12 and placed 1st, second and 3rd over 7 years time. I”ve worn out 2 Gold cups and a Combat Comander. Needless to say, I have had A LOT of experence with the 1911s (my birthday is even March 29, the day the army adopted the 1911). I currently own 3 Kimbers, and with the exception of only 1 custom made competion piece, the Kimbers have been the best quality, relibality, accuracy and over all looks. I currently shoot 300 to 500 rounds of reloads per week. I teach combat situation shooting and reload special crappy rounds to cause malfunctions and I’m hard pressed to get my students Kimbers to jam or fail to eject. Its kinda funny actually.
        I ordered my Solo today. If it’s anything like the Kimbers I own or been exposed to I’m sure I won’t be disapointed.
        I do know when Kimber moved to Yonkers the quality improved greatly.

    • Mike V. May 26, 2011, 2:56 pm

      I also bought a 3 inch Kimber 45 from Gander Mountain about two years ago when i was doing alot of protection work.The Kimber failed to feed and jammed several times.No i didnt limp wrist it.I changed magazines and my gunsmith had the same problem with it.After several trips to the gunsmith and the range i decided Kimber sucks and thier guns are highly priced from a marketing gimmick and not from actual quality.I traded the kimber straight up for a glock 30 sf taking a 600 dollar loss.Glocks are not the greatest guns in the world and im not plugging them.However, id take a glock or cz over kimber anyday.Maybe the upper end kimbers that cost 2k are great.But for the average joe who works and may have to turn it over for evidence where it sits in a room for two years awaiting a trial its not worth the cost,quality or function.

  • nevermissonce February 22, 2011, 3:10 am

    Kimber best money can buy, built in USA. I have three kimber and soon to own 4 the solo, great little hide away gun.

    • Thomas June 4, 2013, 1:20 pm

      One reason to NEVER buy a Kimber…..they’re made in NEW YORK! I refuse to buy anything made in a state that violates the Constitutional rights of its citizens. Kimber doesn’t give a damn, because many of their guns do not hold more than 7 rounds. If they cared, they’d do move from that Nazi controlled state!!!

  • supersport51 February 20, 2011, 3:15 pm

    own a kimber cc kahrn sig all are worth the money .personally carry the kimber or the kahrn both have had many many rounds thru, them with no problems .when your life depends on what kind of gun you carry money should not be an issure ,go kimber

  • gig February 20, 2011, 2:15 pm

    Wonder how the Solo might compare to the new Kahr CM9. I fully expect the price of the Kahr to be much less than the Solo and more in range of the CW series.

  • Carl Moss February 19, 2011, 12:15 pm

    Well that is real disappointing to read what (Bob Neal) said about the solo. I was planning on gettin one when they become available. Surely that must be a isolated case with a new product that slipped through Kimber factory. This don’t sound like kimber reliability.. Can’t imagine them putting out a new pistol that was so non functional?? Also from what I have read the solo has a trigger pull much lighter then the kahr. I have a PM9 which is a long trigger travel and takes quite a bit resistance to drop the firing pin. Nothing at all like a 1911 single action on course. I haven’t been able to find a solo yet forsale, living in the midwest we behind everybody else I guess.

  • kcgunnut February 17, 2011, 4:59 pm

    Keltec has NOTHING on Kimber,You are not even looking at the same type of guns,Keltecs are cheap plastic handguns that are VERY un-reliable.Until you have seen the new Kimber Solo i don’t think you can say much about it,I have seen it and shot it,If you want to risk your life with a Keltec,you will regret it.Kimber is in a league all by its self.Good luck with your 2 plastic guns.
    This new Kimber is VERY much worth the $600 price dealers are asking for them.

  • BOB NEAL February 15, 2011, 1:34 pm

    well, I bought one. Out of the box loaded it with Magtech bullets, it wouldn’t feed. After firing, it went to lock open each round. I fired it five times having to release the slide lock each round. Tried Hornady Critical Defence bullets and same story. Took it back where I bought it and they sent it back to Kimber. Said it would be 4-6 weeks. Not speaking well of a “glory” gun in my opinyon. Bob

    • Brandon May 13, 2011, 9:24 am

      I had a similar problem with me Khar CW40 when I brought it home. After taking it apart and looking closely I noticed the slide stop spring had been bent. (probably from someone carelessly forcing it back together after break-down) My Khar takes down by removing the slide lock and the pictures of the Solo suggests it does as well. You may want to located that slide stop spring and just take care when disassembling and reassembling the gun once they get it back to you.

    • Jaysunb January 14, 2013, 8:56 am

      I have owned 2 Kimber solo’s so far (the 2 tone & the stainless), i have also owned the kahr pm9 as well as every Kel-tek pistol ever made, i have even owned the sig 238 & 938. There is absolutely no comparison between the Kel-Tek pistols and the Kimber solo! When you buy a $700 and up Kimber Solo you are buying a quality pistol that shoots like a dream come true and carries just as well. You can throw this all metal gun into your front pocket and forget about it until its needed and you can be rest assured that when you pull it out to use it that it will function 100%.
      Now as far as the Kel-Tek pistols, these were your only choice years ago for a pocket pistol and i owned a P3AT for many years and carried it everyday, i put thousands of rounds through her with liitle to no issues. But always knowing that i was carrying .380 it felt innadiquite and i never truly felt safe with that gun. Now that there are more choices with 9mm mouse guns im a happier man.
      In my honest opinion is there a huge difference between the Kimber Solo, the Sig 938, and the Kahr Pm9…. Just the price! They all shoot the same round they are all 3 just as reliable and felt recoil between the solo and the 938 are about the same (the kahr felt recoil is a bit more). The reason i have a solo now over all the others is that i can shoot this gun faster and more accurate than all the other models. Its sight system is easy to use in a quick draw situation and the accuracy at 15 yards is comparable to most 4″ 9mm handguns.

      Just my .02 cents

  • Ben 'Give Your Money to Goldman Sach' Bernanke February 6, 2011, 3:42 am

    I wanted to edit my comment above –

    The Kahr CW9 actually holds 1 more round of 9mm with the standard magazine, or 2 more rounds of 9mm with the extended base plate magazine, than this Kimber.

    So – another win column for the Kahr.

    • plainejaine February 27, 2011, 10:15 pm

      Kia and Mercedes both a car. Kahr and Kimber both a gun.

  • Ben 'Give Your Money to Goldman Sach' Bernanke February 6, 2011, 3:40 am

    Hmmm….this or a Kahr CW9, which is lighter, has the same capacity, is thinner at 0.9″, and is probably of better quality – oh, and the Kahr is totally reliable and half the price…

    Kahr CW9.

    Kimber likes to act like they re-invented the wheel, or something, with this. What, exactly, is anything but ho-hum about this? Their are better choices for the money out there. Much better choices are out there.

  • opsh8r January 28, 2011, 4:33 am

    If you compare the Solo to John Moses Browning’s Model 1905, an early version of the 1911, you will probably see a resemblance, albeit on a smaller scale. While the 1905 wasn’t striker fired it did have an internal hammer, which gave it a similar look. I carry a Kimber, either a Pro Carry or an Ultra Elite most of the time, but on those especially hot days in Texas I carry a Kahr PM9. It’s hard to beat a Kimber trigger without stepping up to a Wilson, Brown, or other custom 1911, but the Kahr PM9 probably has the best double action trigger I’ve experienced as of yet, and I’ve had no malfunctions whatsoever in several hundred rounds of range time. I have Glocks, HK’s and an XD but the Kahr tops them all when it comes to the trigger. I’ve got a few friends who would put Glock on top but a blanket statement that everything has a better trigger than Kahr just doesn’t hold water. Just my .02 for the night.

  • Jackson January 28, 2011, 2:14 am

    If you want a pocket pistol that looks like a 1911 I’d suggest the Sig380, becuase this doesn’t look anything like one.

  • Laura January 27, 2011, 2:55 am

    I shot one this weekend. Better trigger pull than the Kahr in my opinion. Pretty accurate at 7 yards, no failures in 24 rounds. Ordered one as well!

    • Joe bob January 27, 2011, 10:37 am

      if no failures in 24 rounds is notable, you have become used to shooting some crappy hardware.

      • Joe bob January 27, 2011, 10:39 am

        Also, not to tear you up too much but everything has a better trigger than Kahr.

    • Don Thomas January 31, 2011, 9:50 pm

      Joe Bob needs to consider that the suggested break in on the Solo is 24 rounds. I wonder if he has a gun that required only 24 for break in? (just a thought)

  • Rob January 27, 2011, 12:04 am

    I saw the Solo the other day, it’s smaller than a SR9c, almost the exact size, shape and feel of a PM9, same cost too, comes with one mag not 2. the new Ruger LC9 also looks to join this similar class by itself 😀 but haven’t seen one in person. What I like about the Solo is the aluminum frame, sites and safety. One shop wasn’t selling their Solo, just taking orders, another shop sold their Solo but had an all black PM9 with my name on it! (don’t think they make an all black Solo).

  • Don January 26, 2011, 11:22 pm

    Considering the work Kimber has done with Crimson Trace, it would have been great if they would have found a way to integrate a laser sight system with such a small CC handgun. It would be very marketable in my opinion, not to mention, quite useful.

    • Don Thomas January 31, 2011, 9:47 pm

      Don, information I have seen indicates a Crimson model coming direct from Kimber. Of course, it can be bought from Crimson and self installed. I agree that the laser, IMO, is the way to go for a snap-into-action-carry piece. I have a Kimber Crimson Carry .45 and love it!

  • Seuss January 26, 2011, 9:46 pm

    Sorry but Kahr blazed this trail a long time ago. 380, 9mm, 40 S&W and 45 ACP, you pick.

  • David January 26, 2011, 8:58 pm

    I currently have three Kimber pistols (2 full size 1911, and 1 ultra model)–all fine, reliable shooters. But my carry weapon of choice is Kahr PM9. It also shoots well and is the best I have found in this caliber for my preferred pocket carry (with holster).

  • Rob Crist January 26, 2011, 6:13 pm

    I own/carry a Kahr PM9. Great weapon, flawless function, more accurate than me, several options for sights/safety levers/finish/etc. Comparing the Solo specs and pricing to that of the PM9, it looks like Kimber may have considered this their target. I tend to agree with the prior comments…what makes this unique is Kimber. And though I’ve always wanted a Kimber, I’m keeping my trusty Kahr.

    • david r October 18, 2011, 2:43 pm

      I’ve always wanted a Kimber myself. Maybe someday I’ll buy one. But every time I have the money,something always comes up, always. I carry a third generation Taurus pro 45acp. When I can, I carry a Rock island 1911 0fficer’s pistol. Kinda heavy, and I always know it’s there. But it will do the job very nicely. And like the Taurus, it has never failed me. Besides, if I ever have a situation in which I am forced to use either. I’d rather see the police confiscate a four hundred dollar gun, than a kimber. Especially if it’s a Kimber ultra cdp. Once they get their hands on you gun. Do not be surprised if you never get it back. Especially if you’re out of state. Let’s face it, even a top line three thousand dollar handgun can fail. I guess the old saying holds true. Especially when your life is on the line. “If it works, it’s good. If it doesn’t, it’s no good.

  • Shaun January 26, 2011, 5:44 pm

    Strange to see a striker fired Kimber. Guessing the feel is supposed to mimic a 1911, not the looks. As far a price goes in this Kimber vs Kel-Tec (or AMT, etc.), most of the time you get what you pay for. There are great inexpensive guns out there, but you usually don’t see high priced junk from established manufacturers. I personally choose to carry pricier firearms because I don’t want to risk the odds of drawing an inoperable gun in an emergency.

  • Lonnie January 26, 2011, 4:34 pm

    Hum, the Kel-Tec P11 is lighter, hold twice the number of rounds and is about 1/3 the price. This Kimber must really be something.

    • Administrator January 26, 2011, 4:59 pm

      I don’t think anyone would argue that the Kel-Tec is a great value and an awesome carry pistol. In its class it is a formidable competitor. Some people aren’t looking for an inexpensive plastic pistol. This is an alloy gun in the same weight, and slightly smaller, with 1911 features, and that matters to a lot of people.

    • Rocky January 28, 2011, 4:37 am

      Yes, I have a comment. ONE is a KIMBER, the Other is a Kel-Tec! DUH! The Kimber is worth every penny! Kahr has never done anything for me either. That toy is definetly overpriced. 1911 features? yup thats it for me!

  • sprale January 26, 2011, 4:25 pm

    Actually reminds me more of my SR9c than a 1911. That’s not a bad thing, just shows the focus and purpose of the pistol. A compact 1911 or Officer’s model is a small pistol, but not really pocketable. The Solo is a bit thinner than the SR9c, but I find I can pocket mine just fine with the right holster and clothing.

  • meeester January 26, 2011, 4:14 pm

    How could this writer use the exclamatory comment “the Solo is in a class by itself”?
    A chart with details and photos of many similar guns are at
    Besides my narrower and lighter Kel-Tec PF9 is see the AMT Backup is thinner and does it in .4acp.
    It may be a fine gun but the “class by itself” thing is an interesting credibility item

    • Administrator January 26, 2011, 5:10 pm

      Similar is the key word here, There is nothing similar to the Solo at prese. I own two .45ACP DAO backups (you probably do not) and carried them for many years exclusively. They are crude guns with only marginal reliability. I was forced to stop carrying them because they basically fell apart. These SHOT articles are not reviews. They are news. Credibility is a matter of experience and being able to see the whole picture. I don’t believe that even Kel-Tec would argue that the Kimber is in a different class of pistol. It just boils down to what you want. I am not an advocate for Kimber for certain (I currently carry a Para P-10), but to question credibility with a gun that you had to wrap in electrical tape in order to get it to feel right is a little over the top.

      • Hammer March 13, 2011, 11:14 pm

        What is the purpose of the paranthetical statement “you probably do not”? Are you assuming he does not because of his preferred choice of carry? Sorry, but I’m trying to follow the conversation and I missed the point here.

    • pocket info January 30, 2012, 10:07 am

      It isn’t just size and weight that defines a class. I wish I’d seen that chart sooner! It confirms what I’ve found in my own research. I’ve been sorting through compact and pocket pistols for months, based on specifications. The Kahr and Kel-Tec pocket pistols didn’t measure up. The only other I found (.380 or greater) was the Sig Sauer P238, which I bought yesterday. I would have bought a Kimber Solo, but they are very sought-after and hard to get. The S&W Bodyguard came close.

  • Andy January 26, 2011, 2:42 pm

    It’s weird that Kimber would claim this gun looks like a 1911

  • Al Thompson January 26, 2011, 2:18 pm

    This is a close-up gun, so sights are “hopeful” at best. I’ll stick with my smaller and more affordable Kel-Tec. There’s not much caliber difference in 9 mm and .380, and at close range it doesn’t matter that much. The only things this gun has going for it is the recoil trigger re-set after the first DA pull, and the safety. I’ll buy two smaller 380 Kel-Tecs instead of one Kimber at the same price.

    • Viper May 1, 2012, 5:36 pm

      I don’t intend to start a s***storm here but I think it is important to present a couple of facts in case someone is doing actual research for a carry pistol. To compare a Kel-Tec to any first-rate carry gun is ridiculous. If you ever have to use a concealed carry weapon in self defense it must absolutely be 100% reliable! A friend and I took too Kel-Tec 380’s, which he purchased new, to the range. After about 20 rounds a spring broke and the gun would no longer fire. I can hear the “well anyone can have one bad part” crowd now, and I would tend to agree with that except, three days later, the other one did exactly the same thing. I will not argue what toys you might or might not enjoy and your choice of firearms can be in that category. However a CCW handgun does not fall into that category. It is a lifesaving tool. Never bet your life on anything from Kel-Tec.

  • Wes January 26, 2011, 1:12 pm

    Other than being a handgun and having all the parts common to such an item, this gun is NOTHING like a 1911. It looks more like a Ruger SR 9 than a 1911.

    • Eric February 18, 2011, 9:34 pm

      I bought one yesterday, had to drive 2 hours, fore they are near impossible to find. Went to the range this morning and fired 200 rounds through it without a problem, and grouped nicely at 10 yards. BUT when I got home i was going to clean it when I noticed one of the grip screws was missing! Must have worked lose and fell out during shooting it! I called Kimber and they are sending me 4 screws at no cost. They said if it happens again to go to a local hardware store and buy #60 o-rings for the screws! This is my first Kimber, and was really not expecting a company with such a remarkable reputation to tell me to go to the local hardware store and “rig” their product!!!! whatever, we’ll see…….it’s a good shooter though and very concealable.

    • John Wayne April 24, 2011, 3:36 pm

      How or where does the Sig P 238 fit in here ?????

      • Ramon Hardesty September 29, 2011, 1:07 pm

        The Sig P238 has an exposed hammer and can be decocked by lowering the Hammer slowly .. It is a good back up and I carry .. One of my friends has a Kimber Solo and he likes it .. He said that he never had any trouble with te gun and enjoys the fell of the gun .. However: he carries the P238 when on duty .. He carries the Solo when off duty.

        If the made a .380 or a .40 I would buy one!

    • Steve October 14, 2011, 11:15 am

      The slide release for sure looks like a 1911 and maybe the safety releases but to me it looks much more like the old Browning/Colt 1903 or 1908 pocket pistols. What is the old adage? “Never buy the first new model of an automobile. They break!” Perhaps the weapons coming out in February or March 2012 after the retool will be more consistently reliable. Hope they get them done before the Mayan calender ends! lol

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