Can someone tell me the pros and cons...


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crazydog
October 25, 2006, 03:19 PM
...of polymer frames vs. full metal frames, just want to understand why some people will choose polymer over metal.

Thanks,

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SoCalShooter
October 25, 2006, 03:38 PM
Polymer frame weapons are usually lighter, my kimber 1911 steel frame weights 39oz my hk usp .45 only 24oz.

MisterPX
October 25, 2006, 03:41 PM
Well, beside being cheaper to manufacture...plastic weighs less, flexes = absorbs some recoil (not 100% sure about that one), and doesn't rust.

In the grander scheme of things,most pistols with/without a plastic frame have no counterpart.

SoCalShooter
October 25, 2006, 03:42 PM
oh yeah the plastic is easier to make and cheaper than steel. I like both and it depends on the application, hunting I take my HK.

Bazooka Joe71
October 25, 2006, 04:09 PM
Plastic obviously doesnt rust
It weight quite a bit less, so its better for CCW
It is cheaper to manufacture, which in turn makes it cheaper for you to buy
It also feels better in your hand in the winter.

On the other hand:

Its not quite as durable
Recoil is substantially greater(due to the lighter weight)
And it just plain doesn't feel as good:D (My biased opinion)

Hawk
October 25, 2006, 04:15 PM
I had read that the Poly and steel frame STI uses in the 2011 absorbs recoil.

Now that I own one I still can't say that's accurate - it seems so, but it might just be the power of suggestion. My wild guess is that it absorbs about as much recoil as it adds by being lighter, hence a wash.

It is marginally less likely to bring on a case of OCD for those of us prone to scratch and ding our weapons.

GunNut
October 25, 2006, 04:22 PM
Polymer is usually also thinner than a steel frame with Grips.


But to me there are really three reasons why I choose polymer(glock) over a steel framed gun.

1. Weight
2. Weight.
3. You guessed it..........Weight.

If i'm going to carry it has to be as light as possible. My Glock 30 w/10+1 rounds of 230gr HP's is lighter than my old Colt Combat Commander with 7+1 rounds by quite a bit.

Steve

CWL
October 25, 2006, 08:03 PM
Military preference of polymer resins over steel. Cheaper to manufacture, no need to machine like steel/alloy.

Polymer also has higher resistance to corrosives(water) and extreme temperature/weather ranges than steel. Polymer firearms took-off in Austria (Steyr & Glock). -They remember what happened to steel guns on the Russian Front and in Arctic extremes.

Having your steel gun shatter can ruin a war.

10-Ring
October 25, 2006, 08:20 PM
I have steel guns & I have both poly guns...it took me a very long time to accept polyguns...This year, I've only bought steel guns.
I prefer the polymer over alloy guns in terms of lightweight & for durability. And between my USPs & my 1911's I'm equally & completely satisfied w/ their performance :D

gaven
October 25, 2006, 08:34 PM
MAGNET WILL NOT STICK TO POLYMER FRAME. SORRY ABOUT THAT I COULD NOT HELP IT , I KNOW YOUR QUESTION WAS SERIOUS.

kokapelli
October 25, 2006, 08:43 PM
Polymer has many advantages over steel, but I personally like the feel and weight of a steel pistol.

Minator
October 25, 2006, 08:58 PM
Lol:what: Polymer absorbs recoil hahhahahahaha....anyway the main difference between polymer and metalic framed pistols is the weight as others have mentioned. In my own experience Ive owned an equal amount of polymers and metalic framed guns and have settled on heavier metalic framed pistols.

Due to the fact of the felt recoil you recieve. Firing with one hand using a glock 17 (which is a full size 9mm with a 5" barrel) highlights an example of how some polymer framed pistols recoil. Which when shooting with one hand with a glock I have found that they tourqe to the right , which with your support hand in place it still does this action only in a smaller rotation which doesnt really matter you can train with it to get descent grouping.

Which I personally chose heavier metalic framed pistols mostly 1911 and sig style pistols a few BHP's. Due to the fact that the recoil that I have experienced with one of these types with the heavier frame is a straight back push rather then a rotation which is harder to control and compensate for at least for me. The funny thing is I can shoot my sig .45 acp better than a glock 17-19 with equal trigger time.

Dont listen to the fairytales you here on the internet about polymers being better because they wont rust and are more reliable. Any gun will rust because they all have metal parts unless its an airsoft as long as you keep any gun oiled and clean you wont have any rust or reliability issues(of course if it isnt a taurus or S&W).

Lone_Gunman
October 25, 2006, 09:15 PM
Firing with one hand with a glock 17 which is a full size 9mm with a 5" barrel highlights an example of how some polymer framed pistols recoil which when shooting with one hand the pistol wants to tourqe to the right in an overly exagerated motion, which with your support hand in place it still does this action only in a smaller rotation which doesnt really matter you can train with it to get descent grouping.


This sentence is very difficult to understand, but I don't think I have ever experienced whatever it is that you are trying to say.

Minator
October 25, 2006, 09:41 PM
Every glock I have ever fired has had a hard tourqe to the right, which I thought it was me until I let quite a few people try it out and they experienced the same thing.

Panthera Tigris
October 25, 2006, 10:38 PM
I've actually experienced less recoil with Glocks than any other handgun I've tried, and I've fired dozens and dozens of different handguns. Probably because Glocks fit me so well.

The Lone Haranguer
October 25, 2006, 11:00 PM
If the gun, overall, works (i.e., is reliable, accurate, durable and has the shooting qualities I desire) for me, I am not overly concerned about what it is made of.

Originally posted by BazookaJoe71:
It is cheaper to manufacture, which in turn makes it cheaper for you to buy

That doesn't explain the price of H&K pistols. :p Although, they certainly are cheaper than the P7s.

boldkharma
November 1, 2006, 10:18 PM
Have to agree with Minator. My 17 will recoil like that one handed. My full size Springfield loaded(9mm) is a joy to shoot. Zero recoil.

MachIVshooter
November 1, 2006, 11:00 PM
Having your steel gun shatter can ruin a war.

If it's that cold, you're no longer a combatant. You're a popsickle with a gun. And a simple fact: Cold temperatures adversely affect polymers long before steel. I own and shoot both and have full confidence in either, but steel feels better and is more durable. Why do you think polymer guns have steel inserts for the slide rails and other critical parts?

Phil DeGraves
November 2, 2006, 09:50 AM
"Polymer" (plastic) guns are cheaper to manufacture so the makers have a higher profit margin. They are lighter and easier to carry, so LE likes them. They wear well and are not affected by adverse environmental conditions, and since the majority of LE are not gun people, they like them because they believe they don't have to take care of it. On the downside, unless it's gas operated, they recoil more because of their light weight; this is a fact of physics, not a subjective opinion. They blow up on occasion, more so than steel frame guns, which is to be expected since plastic is not as strong as steel. Due to the "flex" in the frame, they tend not to be as accurate as steel frame guns, but any of them will shoot more accurately than 99.99% of the shooters, so this really isn't much of an issue. Except for the "flex" you can say almost the same things about aluminum framed guns. Aluminum is lighter than the steel but wear out quicker with excessive use.

Personally, I prefer steel framed guns.

Phil DeGraves
November 2, 2006, 09:55 AM
"If i'm going to carry it has to be as light as possible. My Glock 30 w/10+1 rounds of 230gr HP's is lighter than my old Colt Combat Commander with 7+1 rounds by quite a bit."

If I'm going to carry, I want to be able to hit with it. Heavier guns are easier to shoot accurately than lighter guns. The reason you carry a gun is to protect yourself when something really bad is about to happen. I shoot my steel frame guns better than any poly gun, so when my life and health are on the line, I want the gun I shoot best.

possum
November 2, 2006, 06:18 PM
i choose polymer for carry, except for my kahr which is steel framed but that is for the simple fact that it already such a small gun , and the steel frame helps the control aspect. polymer is light, dosen't rust, and they fit me that is the major reasons why i like polymer. but in no way am i limiting myself to only polymer guns. I would love to have a taurus pt1911.:)

TestPilot
November 2, 2006, 07:33 PM
I have no preference one way or the other,since both have their strengths and weaknesses.

Polymer is flexible. That not only contributes to recoil absorbtion,which I never felt significantly by the way,it also makes it more resistant to material being stressed and cracking.

Metal is more resistant to gouging in point spots because it's harder.

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