Review: Kimber Super J'gare 10mm 1911
May 16, 2018
Maybe it's because I serve double-duty as the editor of both Shooting Times and my company's special publication called the Complete Book of the Model 1911, but I've come to appreciate that there is almost no shooting task a Model 1911 can't handle. Case in point: The 10mm Super Jägare from Kimber is built for hunting.
Jägare is Swedish for hunter, huntsman, lover of the chase. I don't usually go for gimmicks and cute names for guns, but in this case, I sort of like that Kimber decided to name its new hunting pistol Super Jägare. To me, it indicates the designers spent a considerable amount of time and effort creating this special-purpose 1911.
The Super Jägare pistol comes from the Kimber Custom Shop, so it has all the bells and whistles. Nice features include a throated and fully supported match-grade 6.0-inch barrel and slide and a match-grade barrel bushing. They are made of stainless steel. Interestingly, the barrel has six ports that match up with six ports in the slide. The ports are designed to help control the recoil of the high-performance 10mm Auto ammunition. The pistol's slide is given a matte black DLC finish. DLC stands for Diamond-Like Carbon.
The pistol has a steel frame with charcoal gray KimPro finish, and the front of the grip frame has Kimber's Super Carry checkering treatment. Actually, it's not checkering; it's a scale-like texturing that Kimber first used several years ago on its Raptor pistols.
The mainspring housing has the same scale-like texturing, and it's bobbed at the bottom, giving the grip a round butt. There is no mag well, per se, but the inside of the bottom of the grip frame is beveled to assist with the insertion of a magazine. The upper end of the grip frame has a high cut under the trigger guard to help provide a high-hand hold.
The grips are green-and-black G10- Kimber calls them Micarta- and they are partially checkered and attached to the frame with black hex-head screws.
The pistol also has a checkered slide stop, an extended ambidextrous thumb safety, a skeletonized and blackened aluminum trigger, a skeletonized Commander-style hammer, and a beavertail grip safety.
The tuned trigger pull measured 5 pounds, 8 ounces according to several measurements with my RCBS trigger pull scale. Amazingly, there was just 2 ounces of variation over 10 measurements. That's extremely consistent.
The Super Jägare uses a standard recoil spring guide rod, and the recoil spring is rated at 18.5 pounds. The magazine holds eight rounds of ammo and has a flat follower.
On top, the slide has scale-like texturing running almost the full length. It stops about 0.75 inch from the muzzle end, even with the last barrel/slide port.
The ejection port has been lowered and flared. And instead of typical cocking grooves, scale-like grasping areas are located on both sides near the rear sight.
Speaking of the rear sight, the pistol comes with a Leupold DeltaPoint Pro red-dot sight installed at the factory, and the slide has been milled to accept the Leupold sight. The pistol has no front sight.
The DeltaPoint Pro features a 2.5-MOA electronic red dot and DiamondCoat lens coating and blackened lens edges for optimal clarity. It uses Leupold's patented Motion Sensor Technology, which detects motion, activates illumination, and adjusts the brightness to the environment. It also has a manual adjustment for personalized settings. There are eight brightness levels, and one CR2032 battery provides the power. A master on/off switch allows the unit to be powered down to prevent battery drain. The sight is shockproof and waterproof, and it weighs 1.9 ounces.
The Super Jägare's fit, finish, and hand-craftsmanship are excellent. The entire pistol has been given Kimber's carry melt treatment, so all edges and corners of the gun are smooth.
As it came from its polymer case, the Super Jägare was extremely tight, but the tight fit didn't hinder functioning. The pistol cycled perfectly throughout my test session with all 10 of the factory loads I fired through it.
The 10mm Auto is one of those rounds that has a cult following, although it has experienced a recent flurry of popularity with a bunch of new pistols from several different manufacturers and recent ammunition offerings from some of the biggest ammomakers. It was originally created with law enforcement use in mind, but today it is the darling of handgun hunters. Bullet diameter is 0.400 inch, which is 0.010 inch less than the classic .41 Remington Magnum revolver round, but ballistically, the 10mm Auto is very close to the .41 Mag., making it a great choice for hogs, deer, black bears, mountain lions, and other predators.
Typical bullet weights in factory-loaded 10mm Auto ammunition are 175, 180, and 200 grains. And typical factory-rated muzzle velocities range from 1,030 fps to 1,290 fps in 5.0-inch barrels depending on bullet weight. Some ammomakers also offer 155-grain loads, and they typically produce a muzzle velocity in the neighborhood of 1,350 fps. Corresponding muzzle energies range from 424 ft-lbs to 650 ft-lbs depending on the specific bullet weight.
As I mentioned, I fired 10 different 10mm Auto factory loads in the new Super Jägare with bullet weights ranging from 155 grains through 175 and 180 grains to 200 grains and styles ranging from hollowpoints through jacketed softpoints to roundnose flatpoints. All types fed, fired, extracted, and ejected perfectly.
Velocity ranged from 1,111 to 1,286 fps, measured 12 feet from the muzzle. I fired the rounds for velocity over a sandbag rest, and recoil was not sharp whatsoever. Undoubtedly, the pistol's 2.63-pound weight (42 ounces) helped tame the recoil. Recoil values, as calculated with an online source, ranged from 4.7 ft-lbs to 9.0 ft-lbs. Comparing those figures to popular .45 ACP loads fired in a typical 5.0-inch-barreled 1911 (weighing 39 ounces) that normally generate recoil values ranging from 4.5 to 7.2 ft-lbs reveals that the 10mm's recoil in the 6.0-inch-barreled Super Jägare is not much more.
I've fired a fair amount of 10mm Auto in many 1911s, some with 5.0-inch barrels and some with non-ported 6.0-inch barrels, so comparing the velocities I obtained through the ported Super Jägare revealed some interesting results. The same loads produced velocities in the ported Super Jägare that were on average 30 fps less than in a pistol with a non-ported 6.0-inch barrel. Compared to velocities in a non-ported 5.0-inch barrel, the ported Super Jägare's velocities were on average 10 fps less. The velocities in a non-ported 6.0-inch barrel were typically 20 fps higher than those generated in a non-ported 5.0-inch barrel.
Based on the velocities registered in the ported 6.0-inch barrel of the Super Jägare, the ammunition fired had muzzle energies ranging from 425 ft-lbs to 661 ft-lbs. Those figures are definitely enough to cleanly take deer, black bears, mountain lions, and other similar-size game.
As for accuracy, I fired the pistol on paper targets at 25 yards, mounted in my Ransom Rest, and averaged the results of five, five-shot groups with each load. Then I calculated an overall average accuracy for all loads. The overall average accuracy was 1.84 inches. The best load averaged an incredible 0.87 inch, and the "worst" load averaged 2.71 inches. I don't have to tell you 2.71 inches at 25 yards is quite good, and 0.87 inch is extremely good. The complete results are listed in the accompanying chart.
Then I fired a single five-shot group with the most accurate 25-yard load (the Barnes VOR-TX 155-grain XPB) at 50 yards. The string at that range was a very impressive 2.75 inches, with three of the shots inside 0.75 inch.
My favorite 10mm factory load has always been Winchester's 175-grain Silvertip loading because it is close in ballistics to my favorite .41 Magnum revolver round, which also happens to be loaded with a Winchester 175-grain Silvertip bullet, but I think the Federal Trophy Bonded JSP load would be my pick for all-around hunting even though it was in the middle of the pack in terms of accuracy because it produced the highest muzzle energy (661 ft-lbs) of the 10 loads I fired.
I also found HSM's 200-grain RNFP Bear Load to be interesting. It produced an average velocity of 1,203 fps with a muzzle energy of 643 ft-lbs. It's specifically designed for hunting and features a lead roundnose flatpoint bullet. Since this pistol is designed for hunting, and since the Bear Load was nicely accurate, I would like very much to try it on whitetails and black bears. I will report that it pushed a lot of smoke out of the barrel's ports.
For plain old plinking, the Barnes VOR-TX 155-grain XPB was the softest shooting load I tried, and as stated earlier, its accuracy was stellar. For home-defense, I'd most likely go with the Hornady Critical Duty 175-grain FlexLock loading because it was very good in the accuracy department and the bullet style has proven to be effective for defensive applications.
When Kimber first announced the Super Jägare, Joseph von Benedikt, Shooting Times's hunting specialist, called it "the most exciting pistol announced this year." It is no doubt distinctive. And it has a lot of very nice and practical features. The ported barrel and slide provide excellent recoil control. The green-and-black G10 grips are extremely durable and look great. The rounded grip frame reduces recoil bite and won't fray the lining of your hunting coat. The DLC-coated stainless-steel slide and the KimPro-finished frame hold up to the rigors of hunting in brush country. The Leupold DeltaPoint Pro red-dot sight is perfect for use on big game, as is the powerful and accurate 10mm Auto cartridge.
I've done a fair amount of hunting, although I would never call myself a "super hunter." But armed with Kimber's new Super Jägare pistol, I sure do feel like one.