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Thread: Tactical Accuracy of Polymer-framed Pistols vs. Metal Pistols

  1. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by HCM View Post
    Wow.

    So the thread title talks about tactical accuracy of polymer frames vs metal frames but the OP is all about reliability differences ?

    Since we seem to be talking about reliability differences...

    This has been discussed here before, maybe in the OIS video thread or various Glock threads.

    First eliminate incidents where rounds struck the weapon or the officer's hands. Any gun will be compromised if it, or the shooters hands take a round.

    Even excluding hand/gun hits, there seems to be a noticeably higher incidence of malfunctions seen in OIS videos vs on the range.

    Now that that is out of the way. Is frame flex in some polymer guns an issue ? Maybe but it's the least of the factors at play here.

    So what are the key factors ? I see two.

    First, IME heavier guns are both easier to shoot well tend to be less sensitive to grip induced malfunctions. Why? more mass in the frame means more of a stable base for the forces that cycle the pistol. Less mass in the frames means your grip has to provide the stable base for the cycle of operation.

    Second, as KevH mentioned there is a lot going on in gunfights and participants rarely stand still. why is that important? Two reasons, IME most LE firearms training involves shooting while remaining stationary and when people used to shooting while remaining stationary start to move they tend to relax their grip on the gun.

    I'm not just talking about people relaxing their grip when shooting while moving. I see it when they move then resume shooting while stationary. I've seen this in USPSA and IDPA, Hell, I see it at work in in shooters transitioning from shooting to standing to shooting kneeling in the same spot. For a long time I noticed many shooters would hit standing and start missing when they went to kneeling. I finally figured out they were relaxing their grip. I helped several shooters up their scores simply by having them re-grip the gun after going to kneeling.

    Both the mass of the frame, and the distribution of that mass can effect reliability. This is why many agencies now test potential duty guns both with and without WML. The WML induced issues with Gen 3 glocks .40 cals were a some what different situation where frame flex and structural integrity were factors.
    Thanks for saying it better than I could. I also was confused when people started talking accuracy and then reliability. I tried to steer it back on course with my SLG comment.. there is a reason 1911s can be tuned to turn in ridiculous groups while glocks can maybe get close with custom barrels but never there..

  2. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by 4RNR View Post
    But that example has nothing to do with reliability.

    Accuracy is going to be different for everyone. Hand size, shape, dexterity....

    I have a buddy who can turn any rifle into a target rifle. He's just naturally good it doesn't matter if it's an AR, 10/22, AK, Win94 or whatever. He makes it seem like they're all precision sniper rifles. But give him a handgun and at 3 yards he's more likely to shoot himself than the target. No matter what he does it's like having a brand new shooter pick up a handgun for the first time. None of that says anything about reliability of either platform



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    Thread title is tactical accuracy

  3. #33
    Likes Marmite Clusterfrack's Avatar
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    My older daughter is tiny (<100 lbs), with child-size hands. She provided an interesting (if limited) test of reliability:

    Glock 19 Gen4: FTF malfunctions, even with as good a two-handed grip as she is able to have. Brass to the face as well.

    Glock 17 Gen4: Good function 2 hands, FTFs with SHO. Brass to the face.

    Glock 43: No malfunctions, even SHO (this was a bit of a surprise to me). She now owns a Glock 43.

    CZ P-07: No malfunctions, even SHO. See below for discussion about slide weight.

    Quote Originally Posted by Clusterfrack View Post
    Glock 19 slide: 361g
    CZ P-07 slide: 337g

    The P-07 slide is 24g lighter. From a quick Enos forum search it looks like 1oz (28g) is a reasonable amount for a slide-lightening job.
    https://forums.brianenos.com/topic/1...de-lightening/

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  4. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by breakingtime91 View Post
    Thread title is tactical accuracy
    That may be so but in the opening post it's all about reliability not accuracy

    Quote Originally Posted by jnc36rcpd View Post
    We've seen any number of videos or read reports of pistols malfunctioning during gunfights. Glocks and other polymer pistols seem to predominate these incidents, but of course, polymer pistols are very prevalent in law enforcement and the CCW world. I will note that most videos probably video LEO's and armed citizens using full-size pistols. (I know that smaller pistols may have issues due to their size.)

    While quality polymer pistols will function all day on the square range, are they more prone to failure than metal pistols during the dynamic nature of gunfighting (movement, imperfect grips)?

    I'm definitely not a hater of the polymer pistol. I currently carry Glocks, but would be happy with an M&P, polymer HK or Walther, or perhaps even an APX. (Let's not get into SIG 320 issues.)

    Thanks and be safe.


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  5. #35
    Likes Marmite Clusterfrack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by breakingtime91 View Post
    Thread title is tactical accuracy
    Quote Originally Posted by 4RNR View Post
    That may be so but in the opening post it's all about reliability not accuracy
    This is confusing. I suppose you can't hit the target if your gun doesn't work...
    "BJJ is sort of like nonconsensual yoga"
    "You don’t really graduate from certain problems or certain things… like you always have to work on trigger control and pulling the trigger straight. " --Ben Stoeger 1/24/2018

  6. #36
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    The issue of a slide locking back on a partially loaded magazine is 100% shooter induced, and has been mentioned by HCM and KevH is largely due to stress induced weirdness in the grip. Most cops do not practice for a very fast presentation from the holster, and when they try to do it for real, it gets ugly fast.

    Our Daytime Pistol Qualification for Academy recruits involves a lot of movement between cover positions, and encourages fast and efficient manipulation for the pistol due to overall time constraints. Same with the Lowlight Qual. We see the recruits slides lock back on partially loaded magazines fairly regularly, and actually warn them about this phenomenon and not to just dump the magazine without checking during the test (they wouldn't have enough ammo to finish the course).

    Recently during the Officer Safety/Field Tactics week for an Academy class, their were several young instructors for this course (not Range Staff) who were screaming at recruits when they did a 'tap, rack, ready' after firing five simunitions rounds during a scenario, and going empty (recruits weren't told they were given only five Sims rounds in the 12 round magazine). The instructor was screaming at them that a Sig P226 pistol will NEVER malfunction like that, and it will ALWAYS mean the gun is empty. I had to clear that up with the 'instructors', who were resistant to the info.....until I asked the recruits how many of them had experienced the same malfunction during training. A quarter of them raised their hands.

  7. #37
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    @AMC - I won’t carry my P6 for that reason, it’s the only pistol I have that gives me that problem…plus there’s the issue with the decock lever being where the slide release is on everything else I have.

  8. #38
    Member KevH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clusterfrack View Post
    My older daughter is tiny (<100 lbs), with child-size hands. She provided an interesting (if limited) test of reliability:

    Glock 19 Gen4: FTF malfunctions, even with as good a two-handed grip as she is able to have. Brass to the face as well.
    When was the G19 purchased and which RSA is in there?

    There are several variations and Glock did a "voluntary upgrade" type thing with them (I think they called it a "spring exchange").

    My guess is that you have one of the older iterations that is oversprung.

  9. #39
    Member KevH's Avatar
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    @Clusterfrack



    This diagram is from 2011ish. I'm sure there are even several more versions out there now ten years later. Glock is not great about telling consumers when they fix things.

  10. #40
    Member KevH's Avatar
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    @Clusterfrack

    I just took this pic out of my 2018 armorer manual. Not current, but closer:


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