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Steel Guide Rods

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Ben86, Jul 16, 2009.

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  1. Ben86

    Ben86 Member

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    Are steel guide rods really that superior to plastic guide rods? I have been considering replacing the stock guide rods on my glocks with captive steel ones. Does it really produce more accuracy and reliability? Or is it a waste of money?
     
  2. Gun Slinger

    Gun Slinger member

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    Superior? Maybe, maybe not.

    It all depends on what you are looking for.

    Shouldn't effect accuracy and might effect reliability (positively or negatively).

    I've changed all of mine (Glock 17s, 17Ls and 19s) to the noncaptive, stainless steel rods without a problem and am very satisfied with the results. Wolff gunsprings all around.

    YMMV.
     
  3. yongxingfreesty

    yongxingfreesty Member

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    changed the plastic one on my kahr mk9 to a metal one.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Dirtpile

    Dirtpile Member

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    No reliabilty issues at all with mine. Replaced the plastic with a Tungsten captured rod after the flat head (barrel end) cracked on the plastic one.
     
  5. gwnorth

    gwnorth Member

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    I really don't think it matters in terms of reliability. I've seen some pretty old, and VERY well used Glocks with their original polymer ones in them (at least as the owners claim, and I have no reason to doubt them). A couple of my fellow CZ owners have P-01's (as I do) with polymer in them, and they run fine even after several thousand of rounds.

    It's basically not a part that sees any real stress. In one of the glock torture tests on youtube, the guide rod did melt and was knocking around inside the gun. The weapon still shot and cycled fine. And I personally know of one 1911 owner who somehow forgot to re-install the GI-style guide rod when re-assembling and shot a box of ammo without noticing (I noticed the rod sitting in the lid of his cleaning kit case on the bench when we took a break to put up fresh targets).
     
  6. PO2Hammer

    PO2Hammer Member

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    When my 17L was new, it would occasionally throw rounds high by not locking up that last 1/16". I dropped in an extended tungsten guide rod with a 20 pound recoil spring. That did improve accuracy (or consistency of lock up) temporarily until my pistol smoothed out.

    Now my pistol is back to stock, except for the sights. Reliability has always been 100%.

    Are you having trouble with your pistol?
     
  7. middy

    middy Member

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    The plastic ones work fine.
     
  8. LancerMW

    LancerMW Member

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    id want the heavier guide rod up front just due to the fact of having more weight up front to reduce muzzle flip
     
  9. greyeyezz

    greyeyezz Member

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    Here's what my stock rod looked like after 50 rds in a brand new G32.

    [​IMG]

    With a Wolff rod, 18# spring & 150 rds later. I think its an improvement.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Lonestar49

    Lonestar49 Member

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    50/50 all good IMHO

    ...

    This is a truth, as plastic guide rods are non-load-bearing parts. And they will not bend, rather, they will flex if something with the return spring occurs. But like any plastic, flex it enough and it will weaken and eventually break.

    With that in mind, metal, or stainless steel guide rods will never break via something wrong with a return spring running over them. But one will hear the_argument that because metal won't flex like plastic, one may be inviting a hang-up if such a return spring "event" took place and it bends the rod, the bend is permanent. If such an event took place, I feel that far more damage has occurred to the entire gun to have caused such a force on a bent metal guide rod, be it, from some kind of over pressure event or other major failure of the gun itself.

    Either way, IMHO, one's chances are slim with either plastic or metal.

    As mentioned, and I agree, one benefit of metal is the additional weight which, for my Beretta Px4 40, replacing the plastic guide rod with a stainless steel guide rod did give the gun more balance, and helped the gun return, a tad better, smoother, with less "feel of recoil" and improved faster, more accurate, back on target shots.

    Granted, like waxing ones car, it runs better, faster, than a dirty car, and one's mindset is half the battle, if not more.

    But one thing is for sure, they look far better, they will never break or bend IMHO, and with stainless steel vs black plastic, one can see IF, and when, ones guide rods oil and its surface needs cleaning. And, metal will not be weakened by any cleaners used on it, unlike plastic can with some cleaners, oils with cleaners in them (car oils, in general).

    Which, I've got to say, having gone thru some 550 rounds, for a total of 1000 flawless rounds thru my new, replaced, Px4, the guide rod has yet to show any dirt on the oiled metal, un-captured guide rod vs the black, captured, plastic guide rod when cleaned with spring remaining on rod when cleaning it as best one could.

    With that in mind, shoot your guns with peace of mind whichever guide rod you use/choose/have, as the hopeful_fact remains, they are a non-load-bearing part, under normal or accepted load factors, with replacement return springs, replaced, before such a weakness of a return spring becomes a factor with one too many slams.


    Ls
     
  11. Ben86

    Ben86 Member

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    So generally they are better but not a neccesity. I'm having no problem with my stock recoil assemblies. However, I just feel the urge to make a great weapon even greater. You know what I mean. :)

    I recently bought a S&W M&P9 compact and I really like its captive steel recoil rod. So I thought why shouldn't my Glocks have one as well.

    I would like to use non-captive rods because I can keep them cleaner, I have one and a spring for my glock 17. But they are such a pain. I just really suck at putting them back on. Is there a "master" technique to putting back on a non-captive recoil assembly I just have not learned yet? I basically hold the rod in my right hand, shove the spring down with my left, put the tip of the rod through the front of the slide and then place the end of the rod into its place in front of the barrel lug. Is there an easier way?
     
  12. possum

    possum Member

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    1)accuracy will not be affected, the guide rod has nothing to do with accuracy.
    2) i have seen a glocks guide rod melt and come out the end of the slide, however the gun did just go through 1,000rds non stop and the gun kept working.
    3) glock springs and guide rods are like $5 so i stick with the factory.
    4) in my xd i use a don's guide rod. why? factory captive guide rods form sa are not available and since i go through so many rounds a year i need recoil springs on hand to replace as they are needed.
    5) it allows you to tailor your gun to the loads that you are shooting. full house defensive/ training ammo, or light reloads etc.
     
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