EAA Witness Match barrel swap q's


February 16, 2009, 10:40 PM
I'm looking for some input on caliber changes for the Witness Match platform by simply swapping barrels. I've got a 10MM Match that I love, but ammunition is tough to come by and I'm out of powder for reloading. I don't want to purchase the conversion kits because those aren't Match. Basically what I've read here is that I could purchase a .40, 9MM, .38 Super, or .45 barrel, "fit" it with some sand paper, get the correct magazines, and I should be good to go?

I also noticed two different 4 3/4 inch barrels on the EAA website, which one of those do I need?

How about springs? Just keep the stock 10MM spring or should I get something else?

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February 17, 2009, 03:54 PM
Get the 4.75" LS barrel in 40 S&W and have it fit to your gun. Good to go. If you have factory springs, you should be fine, as the Match is woefully under-sprung for 10mm.

Your 10mm mags will work fine for 40S&W.

As far as other calibers (9mm, 38 Super, 45 ACP). These calibers have a different diameter head, and therefore won't correctly fit your breech face (part of the slide the back of the cartridge sits against). For these calibers you would need a new 'upper' (slide and barrel).

The PTLS barrel is ported, and is made for use with a slide that has corresponding ports.

Options you have in calibers that share a head diameter with the 10mm are 40S&W, 357 Sig and 9X25 Dillon. Barrels are not standardly available for those last two, but a 9mm or 38 super barrel can be chamber reamed for those cartridges. Of course, since you are interested in ammo availability, they wouldn't make much sense.

I too have an Elite Match in 10mm. I love it. Mine has a 22 lb Wolf Recoil spring, and I have a 38 super barrel that will be reamed to 9X25 Dillon. You should be happy with the gun with the 40 barrel.

March 2, 2009, 06:36 AM
Regarding the 10mm/40 S&W calibur swap, I was thinking of going the opposite direction. I have the 40 S&W elite match and would like to upgrade to the 10mm. I see that you've mentioned some "fitting" of the barrel to the slide and would like to know exactly what would be involved and if the slide would still be usable for the .40 barrel after the "fitting". Also, I see that you mentioned that you had a 22lb wolff recoil spring in your 10mm, and after looking on the wolff site, I noticed that they only list up to a 20lb rated recoil spring. So which recoil spring rating is best used with the 10mm upgrade. I've priced the parts and, if the same slide can be used for both caliburs, it's much more economical to do the conversion with slide, spring and mags than it is to buy eaa's conversion kit in which I'd have to purchase the mags seperately anyway. Your thoughts and suggestions on this would be much appreciated

March 2, 2009, 10:07 AM
Your first question...Has not solid answer.

Ideally, a barrel and slide should be 'mated' together for the ideal fit. However, unless you are bullseye shooting, I don't see that it will really make a big difference. All of the material removal when fitting occurs on the barrel, except for incidental wear to the slide. The slide is essentially un-altered, and will still work fine with the original barrel.

I believe the springs I ordered were 49722. I use them in both my standard witness and the elite match.

I haven't looked at the mags for 40S&W, but it is likely they just have an insert that reduces the length of the mag internally. If you can remove that insert, they should work fine with new follower. Hennings (http://www.henningshootsguns.com/shop/magparts.html) has them for $3.00. If they don't have the insert, they may work fine without alteration. I would certainly try some 10mm ammo in them before I popped for new mags.

March 4, 2009, 03:48 PM
So I figured that it'd be a good idea to follow up on my progress for anyone who'd be interested to know.

I just got off the phone with EAA and despite all the bad press they've gotten all over the web, the customer service girl was courteous and helpful. A company can live or die by simple word of mouth, so I suppose that any bad reputation they've had in the past may have encouraged them to do a better job of it. At any rate, after discussing some options I bought the 10mm long slide barrel, recoil spring and 3 10mm mags.

Although not listed on their website, they do indeed carry the full long slide conversion for the Elite Match, but since both the .40 cal and 10mm share the same case dimensions other than case length, buying the parts minus the slide saved me $120 over the full conversion. Doing so allowed me to get a 3-pack of the 10mm magazines so I didn't have to hammer out the strip at the front of the .40 mags I have now and buy new followers. I'd surely **** that operation up and probably end up having to buy new mags anyway. Just better to get the right mags for the job. I will, of course have the barrel fitted and tuned to the slide when it arrives, I'm doing this all on a budget, but don't want to unnecessarily cut corners and end up blowing off a hand in the process. I suppose that I may end up spending my savings on gunsmithing, but it's a chance I'll take for now. I can always purchase the slide later if absolutely necessary.

Now then, this part may belong in another section of the forum, but I'll let the moderators decide that. Although I've shot pistols in the past (mostly revolvers), I'm still sorta new to this game. It took me a long time to decide on a final purchase. I had the Witness in mind most of the time because of the calibur conversion availability, design, price and round capacity. It's only by happenstance and just plain old good luck that I landed on the Witness Match as opposed to the other various versions and I'm glad I did. There's as much really bad word of mouth press online about them as there is good....probably more. It definitely tempers a purchase. What has surprised me is that most of the talk is about various other Witness versions and very little on the Match. Most chatter is about a lot of the earlier versions and Henning's site is mostly about the competition guns. There just isn't a definitive resource specifically on the Elite Match. I'm not sure this will serve as such, and I don't want to overdo an already lengthy post, but I'll briefly detail my own experience so far and share what I have learned so far of the weapon that I know.

My gun is the Witness Elite Match .40 cal. with the duo-tone finish. The best I've been able to gather is that these were introduced in 2006 and are Tanfoglio custom shop tuned to be competition level but at a production price. The tag attatched to mine at the time I bought it had 2008 written on it, but I'm aware this could just be the import date. I didn't think to get the production date while I had EAA customer service on the phone. I bought mine at a Portland, OR gun show in December for $450. I picked up a lot of guns and in my honest opinion, it had the best feel of any available. Better than the CZ's even. Rear sight is micro-adjustable and I've upgraded the front sight post to fiber optic. I also bought 2 spare mags, as the gun only comes with one. Mags needed to be tuned a little, but they have functioned reliably so far. 10mm and .40 cal mags hold 15 rounds, by the way.

It's a very easy gun to become familiar with for a novice like myself and shoots like a dream. Trigger is crisp, easy to sight in and out of 478 rounds through it so far, only ONE failure to feed. First 100 rounds were Wally-world cheapo 100 round box of Winchester and the last 378 were ghetto factory reloads from the gun show. Of all the bad things I've read about the Witness line, I would have to emphatically say that NONE of it applies to this particular weapon. Right out of the box it exceeded all of my expectations. For anyone considering a first handgun purchase and as confused as I was on the shere number of guns available, I can whole-heartedly make a strong recommendation for this model without reservation. It feels like a gunsmith finely tuned it before I bought it and didn't charge me a dime for their work.

I've gone a bit long here, but I thought it appropriate to share one last item. Concerning the firing pin recall that is mentioned on EAA's website, the recall is for gun serial #'s beginning with "AE". The Match serials begin with "EA", so are not part of the firing pin saftey notice.

I hope this information is helpful to anyone considering a Witness Match purchase.

March 4, 2009, 04:01 PM
Although not listed on their website, they do indeed carry the full long slide conversion for the Elite Match,

They do offer an Elite Match slide? Do you remember the pricing on it? I always shied away from the slide conversions because the ones listed on the website on not Match slides.

March 5, 2009, 10:50 PM
EAA does not offer a 10mm LS conversion anymore --- BUT -- you can get a 10mm LS brl.


Check out the link above for more information about the two conversions I did.

March 5, 2009, 10:55 PM
As to the LS conversions ---- they make them in every cal. EXCEPT 10MM --- they used to have them in 10mm but no longer.

Link to my range report;

March 5, 2009, 11:22 PM
Might as well post'em ----- these are two other 10MMs of mine that I have photos of;

S&W 610 with 5" brl. custom double action only

Colt Delta Elite custom comp gun --- used in IPSC/IDPA/Bowling Pin Matches

March 6, 2009, 05:24 AM
in response to the long slide conversion availability, I called my order in to EAA rather than just buy off their web page cause I couldn't make heads or tails over which magazine was for the match....when I told the customer service girl that I wanted to order the 10mm long slide barrel, she asked me if I wanted the full conversion kit OR the barrel....I mentioned to her that the LS conversion wasn't listed on their website, but she said over the phone that it WAS available....I suspect that their web page doesn't get updated much and in my opinion doesn't give nearly as much information as I'd personally like....I put the barrel, mags and recoil spring on order without much fanfare....the only downside is that it's on 3 week backorder....totally killed my "instant gratification" button, but if all goes according to plan, I should be shootin 10mm by the first week of april....hopefully....backorder is because they gotta import the parts from italy....possibly they just import the guns regularly and get the parts on an "as needed" basis....who knows....anyway, if ya really wanna get the word from the horses mouth, I'd suggest ya just call em directly....I didn't get the price of the slide cause I wasn't wanting the whole conversion....10mm will mate up just fine with the 40 slide and it's not my intention to build an arsenal just to get a couple happy fun caliburs....I know a lotta guys who've spent a lot more for a lot less and ain't been happy with the results....I still plan on getting the wolff spring tuning kit even though I sprung for the factory spring....just a good place to start since I got off so cheap....one nice thing about the backorder is that she said that they won't run the credit card through until the parts arive and they ship em out....so I'll probably have it paid off before I even get it all

March 6, 2009, 10:23 AM
Hiya Wiz,
I am puzzled by the info the girl gave you about the 10mm LS conversion ---- about 3 weeks ago , I ordered some mags etc. from EAA and asked the girl a few questions that she did not know the ansewer to --- so she put me thru to the Gunsmith and he was the person that told me EAA would no longer have the 10mm LS conversion.
If /when you or anyone else gets a 10mm LS conversion -- Please post the info and perhaps IM me.
And I totally agree that the EAA website "blows" as it is hard to figure out some of their info/specs.

BTW --- the girl that ansewered the phone told me that EAA gets a shipment of guns/parts once a month from Tanfoglio/Italy.

March 6, 2009, 02:37 PM
maybe she was new....hellifiknow....I didn't talk to the gunsmith, and perhaps I should have....first time I'd ever called em, so it's possible you're right on that

January 7, 2011, 06:16 PM
i picked up a eaa witness 10mm full size with a rail, it is a "wonderfinish" gun, and now im kindabeside my self.

i read a lot of reports of fellas with wonderfinish 10 mm (rounded top profile, like mine is) they crack the freaking slide after 150-300 rounds.

when the guns get sent back to eaa if you dont mention the fact that most of al the frame crackes are from rounded top wonderfinish 10mm and .45 acp's. they give you the same old slide and it cracks again. from what ive heard.

if you mention you dont want the rounded top, they give you a blue'd square top slide. usually and elite or stock top.

i am not even going to shoot this thing, unless i get a sprinco guide rod/buffer setup, and a recoil buffer from buffertech.

or \

i just order a .40 slide and throw my 10 mm barrel in it and im good to go.

i did plan on getting a .9mm setup and a .40 and .45 setup as well.

so the .45 and .40 and 10mm all use the same slide??

or are there 3 slide sizes, a .45/slide, 10mm/.40 slide, and a .38 sup./9mm/.357 sig slide??

i love this platform, i mean you could get the longslide, compact slide, long barrels flush fitting barrels, etc.

i planed on getting a compast top and threading the 10mm barrel for silencer usage, and getting a .40 full size kit. and i could use my threaded 10mm barrel in the .40 slide i think (same size, no?) to hide the threads when not actually trying to "wow" someone with my supressor, other than cool factor, i see no point in a supressor, unless you are the ice man killer.lol

so i need help, when you buy the conversion slides/whole kits which one do you get, old style square, or new style rounded top junk??

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