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Tungsten Guide Rod

Discussion in 'General Glocking' started by Nemesis Lead, Jan 22, 2010.

  1. Nemesis Lead

    Nemesis Lead

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    Guys,

    I am a USPSA shooter rated a B in Production. I am moving over to Limited/Limited 10 where I can make some mods to my Glock.

    I am a HUGE fan of the stock Glock. However, in competition with a Glock 35 and major power factor loads, I find I am fighting the gun in recoil as compared to heavier guns (note this is not an issue with my Production gun--a Glock 34 shooting minor power factor). It is not that big an issue, but having to drive the gun slows my splits down.

    My question is.......how much do tungsten guide rods help control muzzle flip? Is the gun still as reliable as with stock parts? I am in competition, so I am looking for any kind of edge (even slight)--but not if it compromises the reliability of my Glock in any way.

    I am interested in hearing from those who have actually used tungsten guide rods.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. NateHodge

    NateHodge Here too much

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    Not a firearms expert, but I'll tell you what I know about tungsten as a metal. It is heavy, but brittle. And it really doesn't have a lot of flex. Those two properties combined are enough to sway me not to use tungsten as a guide rod.

    Disclaimer: I have never used a tungsten guide rod, so I can't say for sure how it'll hold up.
     

  3. JoshK

    JoshK

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    i shoot a Gen 3 23 and had a little trouble with the recoil in the factory configuration.... i went with a SS guide rod and heavier recoil spring and found that combo helped quite a bit without adding much noticeable weight....

    personally, from what i know about metals from being a welder, i'd stay away from the Tungsten.... just my thoughts though....
     
  4. Brent10mm

    Brent10mm

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    I have a G20 with a tugnsten rod and 24lb spring. helps to tame the beast, also put it on a G23 that I had.

    No issues with either weapon.

    A extended ported barrel may be and idea as well, if its a dedicated target gun.
     
  5. Brian Lee

    Brian Lee Drop those nuts

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    I strongly suspect that most of the "Tungsten" guide rods on the market are actually tungsten alloys, and not even close to being pure tungsten. (There's a similar misuse of the word Titanium, which is actually a very weak metal in pure form, and it's really only the titanium+steel alloys that are very strong compared to ordinary steel.) What other metals are mixed in the tungsten alloy guide rods make a world of difference in how brittle the metal will be. At one end of the scale is "tungsten carbide" - extremely hard, very heavy, but way too brittle to give much impact strength if the carbide content is very high. Router bits from Home Depot are often called tungsten carbide even though the color of the metal is light and indicates very little carbide in them. I have a "tungsten" guide rod (I forgot who I bought it from) that seems to be an alloy of copper and tungsten. "Copper Tungsten" is a lesser known metal outside of the tool & die industry, where it is sometimes used to make electrodes for Electrical Discharge Machining. Copper Tungsten is VERY heavy, but not very hard at all. Even though it's not as strong as stainless steel, it certainly isn't really a brittle metal, and it's WAY stronger than the plastic rod that comes in stock Glocks.

    When you buy a tungsten rod, just check it's hardness with a file. If it files as easy as soft steel (like steel in a water pipe for ordinary plumbing) then it's not going to have the brittleness problem and will be stronger than the stock rod. It the metal seems as hard as the file is, beware, it's brittle. Copper tungsten will have a slightly copper colored look to it. Tungsten carbide (and I mean the really heavy stuff with lots of carbide in it) will be a VERY dark gray color, much darker than the color of carbon steel, and nothing like the bright color of stainless.

    But all this aside, beware that just because a rod is heavy doesn't mean it's really tungsten. It's even possible to alloy lead with steel, although I only know of grades where the lead content is slight, just to make it easy to machine it. But these steels are pretty weak compared to decent steel. Some heavy rods on the market might just be junk steel and who-knows-what, still soft, but very weak to the point of cracking.

    I no longer use my own tungsten rod in favor of a stainless one, because the flat ISMI type springs were scraping and digging into the tungsten rod, and I was concerned this might make the gun less reliable. Wolfe springs with the round cross section don't seem to dig into the rod, but I still decided I'd rather stick with stainless one anyway since I really don't have much way of knowing what my tungsten rod is really made of, or how easily it may break.
     
  6. minuteman32

    minuteman32 NRA & GOA Life

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  7. Bonedoc

    Bonedoc

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    A bit late to market here but wanted to add two cents... I have shot Glocks since '90 and I'm an armorer for them (which says nothing to some folks) and I substituted a Tungsten rod and 15# spring for stock. I noted great reduction in recoil and I liked that... BUT (and this product was purchased form well know Glock people) I have had two Tungsten rods snap at the rear end where it rests on the barrel. Only 1400 rounds and not hot stuff either, chrono at about 950 so I am surprised. The gun is well maintained and I'm still trying to determine why? I have to figure manufacturing but still checking. Will replace with steel for the time being.
     
  8. TSAX

    TSAX USAF Vet

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    You are not the only one to have this happen to you. I have heard many success stories with reduced recoil but just as many with they didnt last or had too many malfunctions or damm I wasted money. To each his own.





    :50cal:
     
  9. Bonedoc

    Bonedoc

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    Hi TSA,
    THANK you for (!!) a fast comment. I agree but to be honest the small amount of mods on my old (gen 2) G22 have helped and I'm a bit anal about trying to 'determine' the ones that do last HOWEVER you are accurate. I am "now" trying to find out if "all" the tungsten rods are made by one manufacturer and then just 'branded' by individual stores (this is, BTW, done in the vitamin world very often - one maker of, say E, and many brands!).
    Thanks again!
     
  10. barth

    barth six barrels

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    I have a heavy competition tungsten in my G27.
    I really can't tell the difference shooting with it.
    Did go with factory springs though.
    With a 4.02" 40-9mm Storm Lake barrel,
    and the Tungsten guide rod,
    it adds about 1.5 oz to the end of the gun.
    Empty it feels slightly nose heavy and loaded perfectly balanced.

    With the nickel plated slide and stainless steel barrel I like the way it looks.
    But performance?
    I don't think the heavy tungsten rod alone will make much difference for you.

    Gen 3 G27 Guide Rod
    Recoil Spring Assembly Weight
    OEM---------- = 0.5 oz
    Stainless Steel = 0.8 oz
    Tungsten----- = 1.2 oz
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2012
  11. Bonedoc

    Bonedoc

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    Hey Barth,
    I have a Storm in my other .40. Had to take a tiny bit out of the chamber for reliable extraction but it is a fine barrel.
    I "did" notice a lot of improvement in 'felt' recoil with the Tungsten but I cannot tolerate such poor longevity in a necessary product (the rear plate came off and I have it, the rod, spring but the the front washer is gone (weird how it escapes) and must determine the makers. This is the second time 'one' such item broke from the same store and there is not one reason for this aside from (perhaps) bad manufacturing. I'm temporarily replacing it with a steel. Thanks again!
     
  12. barth

    barth six barrels

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    I got the most ridiculously expensive one I could find.
    It uses a captured spring assembly and I don't think it comes apart to change springs.
    It's way too expensive, but built like a tank.
    No reliability issues with it so far.
    Tungsten Competition Recoil Spring for Glocks w/ Dual Spring ($69.95)
    http://glockstore.com/pgroup_descri...ition+Recoil+Spring+for+Glocks+w+Dual+Spring/
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2012
  13. Bonedoc

    Bonedoc

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    Who makes your guide rod? VERY nice looking pistol!
     
  14. barth

    barth six barrels

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    See my last post on that.

    Thanks for the complement.
    I like to personalize the look of my pistols.
    And not everybody seems to appreciate what I've done - LOL!
     
  15. farscott

    farscott

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    I have never used a tungsten guide rod in a Glock, but I do use one in my 9x19 PPC 1911. The metal is grey, reminding me somewhat of my tungsten carbide wedding band. However, the 1911 guide rod has a tungsten core, surrounded by steel. I believe this allows the use of the heavy tungsten to reduce recoil, but allows the outer steel sleeve to flex and take the brunt of impacts.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. TxGlock9

    TxGlock9

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    Finally you post about it here. I asked you in the other thread "what did you do to your glock today" and never got an answer from yah. Loser! :tongueout:
     
  17. Bonedoc

    Bonedoc

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    Dual Springs... yup. Got a Gen 2 and so (I tried to aftermarket dual spring setup for it, wasn't happy) we stick with single spring. The pistol has a well maintained 80K on it and so I'm always looking for reliability and then any enhancements. Thanks!
     
  18. barth

    barth six barrels

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    Ops....

    Sorry man I missed that post.
    If you've got questions just PM me.
    Everybody else does - LOL!

    Seriously I don't mind.
    Lot's of folks PM me.
    And if I'm bombarded by the same questions? I'll start a thread.

    I did get two other stainless steel ones too.

    A generic one off of Amazon was too long?
    That one you can change the springs.
    And even though it sounds good on paper?
    Maybe it's not.

    The Lightning Strike fits.
    But doesn't look like it's as well made and heavy duty as the Tungsten.

    The Tungsten Competition model is expensive - but it's nice.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2012
  19. TxGlock9

    TxGlock9

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    The stainless look of your guiderod looks good along with the rest of the silver slide and barrel. I'm thinking of getting my next 19 or 17 NP3 robar'd up with their silver.
     
  20. Pierre!

    Pierre! NRA Life Member

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    I have 3 'Tungsten' guide rods, no problems yet.

    If you want a *really* soft shooting pistol for the new shooter, go with the G35, Tungsten guide rod, and a 9mm conversion barrel...

    The extra metal in the barrel along with the Tungsten guide rod just really soaks up recoil like crazy!

    Don't know why Glock doesn't just ship em with Tungsten guide rods and chopped custom grips... :wow: :rofl:

    HTH

    Patrick