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Thread: Info on TK Custom 9mm conversion

  1. #1
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    Info on TK Custom 9mm conversion

    Anyone here with experiences to report on the TK custom 9mm revolver conversions? Particularly as to sticking during extraction and accuracy issues. Sadly, .38 special loads are pricy and limited. I have a lot of revolvers and 9mm that would go together well, if...

  2. #2
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    That's a lot of money to save on ammo costs. You could probably find a dedicated factory 9mm revolver for not much more. Or, you could get started with a simple reloading set up and load your own 38s. I've seen Lee Turret set ups for one caliber for less than $200. The consumables necessary to load 500-1000 38s will probably cost less than the difference between the reloading hardware and the custom mod.

    Also, $375 buys 18 boxes of 38special range fodder.

    FWIW, 9mm is .355 and 38special is .357-.358. Accuracy will suffer.

    Chris

  3. #3
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    There is another member on this board who has a conversion done by Pinnacle and that seems to be the way to go. It is cheaper than the conversion your looking at by about $145. A standard reamer is not used but a custom one. From the bit that Iíve PMíed back and forth with screwball the conversion works well and POA/POI is pretty spot on.
    @Screwball can give you the low down on his conversion. He has specifically stated he has noticed no degradation in accuracy. Hopefully he will chime in. FWIW I would look hard at the pinnacle conversion. Once my spare cylinders get here they are going to Pinnacle.

  4. #4
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    The economics of the argument are mostly a "rationalization" I believe the psychologists call it. Your math is, of course, correct "mtnbkr". I am not wed to any particular brand of conversion, so I will look into others. My largest concern is cases being difficult to extract. Target grade accuracy much less so. It must at least be acceptable...

  5. #5
    Check with TK... I read it as $300 for the conversion, $75 for 10 moonclips. If possible, Iíd do the machining, and buy moonclips elsewhere. $7.50 per moonclip seems like a lot to me, but I also got myself 50 S&W moonclips back when they were somewhat available and moderately priced (want to say about $4 per moonclip, if I remember correctly). With that being said, donít want to skimp on moonclips, either. Do research, and see if that is a good price.

    Pinnacle is $225 for converting a .38 J-frame cylinder to 9mm.

    If you go 9mm, or any other moonclip fired revolver, I highly recommend the BMT loader. It is an investment, but definitely going to not damage moonclips with loading/unloading. I also recommend Del Fatti pocket moonclip carriers, which you call Matt (owner) and order (stocked item).

    I personally practice with cheaper ammo... mainly UMC bulk. 250 round packs are roughly $60 for 9mm and $87 for .38. Both go pop, both recoil, and both had a similar POI as my carry ammo. That is big for me.

    Defensive ammo, you do usually save on 9mm over .38. My old .38 carry ammo was Hornady CD (+P). Same line, .38 (either pressure) is $20.39 a box... 9mm is $18.69. Just Cabelaís pricing today, both being on sale. The Hornady XTP 147 grain (standard pressure) 9mm that I currently carry is $19.99. 158 grain XTP is $21.99 (non-sale price, Cabelaís pricing... today). While Iím not saying that I go with the cheapest caliber choice, but I do suggest shooting your carry ammo somewhat regularly. Saving a few dollars with that, more dollars with cheap training ammo, it adds up. Plus, being a little cheaper can equate to more shooting of that ammo... which is a plus.

    Sticky cases, not an issue on my end. I never tried .38s out of the converted cylinder, but I think that is the only time there will be sticky cases. I will add that 9mm in moonclips is a lot more manageable than .38s in any format (single loaded, moonclip, speedloader). The shorter cases make loading/unloading a little easier, since there really isnít any grip conflicts, like some with .38s.

    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbkr View Post
    FWIW, 9mm is .355 and 38special is .357-.358. Accuracy will suffer.
    I will say that there is technical data and real world data.

    Technically, you are correct... there should be an accuracy problem. It is a similar argument that comes up with the Ruger single action Convertibles in .357/9mm. But would you argue that .38s in a .357 cylinder would be less accurate due to the longer travel distance to the rifling?

    For that question (.38 verses .357), I grew up shooting S&W revolvers with my father. I had a 686, at first, but switched with his 629-1 after he cut his hand on the grips. .38s out of a .357 isnít any less accurate... probably a little more accurate due to less recoil/flash. Real world data, from my past experiences... which is why Iím not a .357 Magnum fan (prefer the performance of .44 Magnum if Iím going that route).

    When I got my 9mm cylinder off AR15.com, I sent it to Robar after my gunsmith fitted it to my 642-1. My J-frame was redone in NP3 Plus, so doing the 9mm cylinder created a ďConvertible.Ē Iíve shot .38s out of it since mid-2009. Have a good idea on accuracy for it. Since mid-2015, I have been shooting 9mm out of the 642-1. I feel the accuracy is close, if not identical, to the .38 cylinder. That is my results, with the same gun shooting both calibers. But from the handful of people Iíve talked to, especially with 9mm converted Airweights, nobody ever complained to me about accuracy. One guy that did the same as I did with a 642 (used a 940 cylinder), sold his setup to a guy at a local gunshow... and wishes he never did (said he asks each time he sees him).

    When I originally did the conversion, I was considering a dedicated 9mm revolver. The 9mm LCR was out, but trying my fatherís .357 LCR, I really didnít like the trigger compared to my J-frame with Apex kit (it is the same... a DAO revolver, but very different in regards to trigger pull). I also didnít like the higher weight of the LCR (the 9mm is built on the same frame as the .357, not the lighter .38 LCR frame). But the biggest thing was the actual transition. Holsters and other gear needed to be changed, so how much money am I wasting? NP3 Plus J-frame... Iím not getting my money back for that work. I also live in NJ, so picking up a new pistol isnít as easy as it is in other states (one handgun per month and must apply for a pistol purchase permit, which takes time to go for). What about the six years of shooting the J-frame? What does all that trigger time cost? Big thing to consider for the conversion, and a point that might be beneficial for some.

    What would have pushed me over from not converting? A LCRx in 9mm. For the single action option, which I do like, I would have considered the move to Ruger. Now that it was released, Iím probably going to pick one up for poops/giggles in the next year or so.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Screwball View Post
    Check with TK... I read it as $300 for the conversion, $75 for 10 moonclips. If possible, I’d do the machining, and buy moonclips elsewhere. $7.50 per moonclip seems like a lot to me, but I also got myself 50 S&W moonclips back when they were somewhat available and moderately priced (want to say about $4 per moonclip, if I remember correctly). With that being said, don’t want to skimp on moonclips, either. Do research, and see if that is a good price.

    Pinnacle is $225 for converting a .38 J-frame cylinder to 9mm.

    If you go 9mm, or any other moonclip fired revolver, I highly recommend the BMT loader. It is an investment, but definitely going to not damage moonclips with loading/unloading. I also recommend Del Fatti pocket moonclip carriers, which you call Matt (owner) and order (stocked item).

    I personally practice with cheaper ammo... mainly UMC bulk. 250 round packs are roughly $60 for 9mm and $87 for .38. Both go pop, both recoil, and both had a similar POI as my carry ammo. That is big for me.

    Defensive ammo, you do usually save on 9mm over .38. My old .38 carry ammo was Hornady CD (+P). Same line, .38 (either pressure) is $20.39 a box... 9mm is $18.69. Just Cabela’s pricing today, both being on sale. The Hornady XTP 147 grain (standard pressure) 9mm that I currently carry is $19.99. 158 grain XTP is $21.99 (non-sale price, Cabela’s pricing... today). While I’m not saying that I go with the cheapest caliber choice, but I do suggest shooting your carry ammo somewhat regularly. Saving a few dollars with that, more dollars with cheap training ammo, it adds up. Plus, being a little cheaper can equate to more shooting of that ammo... which is a plus.

    Sticky cases, not an issue on my end. I never tried .38s out of the converted cylinder, but I think that is the only time there will be sticky cases. I will add that 9mm in moonclips is a lot more manageable than .38s in any format (single loaded, moonclip, speedloader). The shorter cases make loading/unloading a little easier, since there really isn’t any grip conflicts, like some with .38s.



    I will say that there is technical data and real world data.

    Technically, you are correct... there should be an accuracy problem. It is a similar argument that comes up with the Ruger single action Convertibles in .357/9mm. But would you argue that .38s in a .357 cylinder would be less accurate due to the longer travel distance to the rifling?

    For that question (.38 verses .357), I grew up shooting S&W revolvers with my father. I had a 686, at first, but switched with his 629-1 after he cut his hand on the grips. .38s out of a .357 isn’t any less accurate... probably a little more accurate due to less recoil/flash. Real world data, from my past experiences... which is why I’m not a .357 Magnum fan (prefer the performance of .44 Magnum if I’m going that route).

    When I got my 9mm cylinder off AR15.com, I sent it to Robar after my gunsmith fitted it to my 642-1. My J-frame was redone in NP3 Plus, so doing the 9mm cylinder created a “Convertible.” I’ve shot .38s out of it since mid-2009. Have a good idea on accuracy for it. Since mid-2015, I have been shooting 9mm out of the 642-1. I feel the accuracy is close, if not identical, to the .38 cylinder. That is my results, with the same gun shooting both calibers. But from the handful of people I’ve talked to, especially with 9mm converted Airweights, nobody ever complained to me about accuracy. One guy that did the same as I did with a 642 (used a 940 cylinder), sold his setup to a guy at a local gunshow... and wishes he never did (said he asks each time he sees him).

    When I originally did the conversion, I was considering a dedicated 9mm revolver. The 9mm LCR was out, but trying my father’s .357 LCR, I really didn’t like the trigger compared to my J-frame with Apex kit (it is the same... a DAO revolver, but very different in regards to trigger pull). I also didn’t like the higher weight of the LCR (the 9mm is built on the same frame as the .357, not the lighter .38 LCR frame). But the biggest thing was the actual transition. Holsters and other gear needed to be changed, so how much money am I wasting? NP3 Plus J-frame... I’m not getting my money back for that work. I also live in NJ, so picking up a new pistol isn’t as easy as it is in other states (one handgun per month and must apply for a pistol purchase permit, which takes time to go for). What about the six years of shooting the J-frame? What does all that trigger time cost? Big thing to consider for the conversion, and a point that might be beneficial for some.

    What would have pushed me over from not converting? A LCRx in 9mm. For the single action option, which I do like, I would have considered the move to Ruger. Now that it was released, I’m probably going to pick one up for poops/giggles in the next year or so.
    Do you have pics of the Del Fatti pocket carrier?

  7. #7

    Info on TK Custom 9mm conversion

    Quote Originally Posted by Up1911Fan View Post
    Do you have pics of the Del Fatti pocket carrier?


    And how you release the rounds from the carrier...



    I did a write up on a few different 9mm moonclip carry methods. These were the best, with a belt carrier being a distant second.
    Last edited by Screwball; 01-18-2018 at 07:28 PM.

  8. #8
    I've had TKC convert two of my three titanium cylindered 637-2 J-frames to 9mmx19.
    They are doing the third now.
    I highly recommend them.
    There are no issues with accuracy.
    I use 147gr ammo to minimise the potential for titanium cylinder face erosion.
    I carry three each moonclip reloads in Walmart pill bottles. I use Ranch moon clips at $1.25 each (I do have to slightly reduce their diameter to fit the TKC moon clip recess). It takes about 5 minutes per moon clip to do that while watching TV.

    Attachment 35040
    Attachment 35041

  9. #9
    Site Supporter Bigghoss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimCunn View Post
    I carry three each moonclip reloads in Walmart pill bottles.
    And suddenly I'm thinking about not selling my 9mm LCR...
    Does anyone like pineapple on their pizza guns?

  10. #10
    BTW, weight of the unloaded 9mm 637-2 is 12.5 oz.

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