Convert your Glock 42 or Ruger LC380 to 9mm Makarov

Previously we covered the interesting history of the 9×18 cartridge, which I left with the observation that guns chambered in 9×18 weren’t the affordable blasters they used to be. I wondered how neat would it be to take advantage of cheap 9mm Mak ammo without having to drop $350-$400 bucks for a brand new gun. I have a confession, because that was a bit of a set-up, since you can convert your Glock 42 or your Ruger LC380 to 9mm Makarov!

That’s right! You can convert your guns to these cartridges, and they’ll work exactly the same, and take the exact same magazines. See, the 9mm Makarov is 9×18, compared to the .380 ACP being a 9×17. That 1mm of extra length doesn’t affect the magazines at all, and with our barrels the gun feeds flawlessly. There are three options for barrels:

These conversions are just as reliable as your standard package, and they let you use cheap, combloc steel cased 9mm Makarov ammo in your gun! Plus, instead of dropping $400 on a brand new gun, all you have to do is spend an easy $140 on the new barrel, drop it in, and you’re ready to start blasting Communist style…but out of a better gun than some ratty old Makarov.

Additionally, like we mentioned on Friday, there are some new defensive loads available for 9×18 Makarov, which have superior terminal ballistics to .380. When you’re dealing with a pocket pistol like a G42 or an LC380, adding a little additional terminal performance is a great idea. A Hornady Critical Defense 9mm Mak round is going to be a solid choice for self defense, and definitely preferable to a .380 in a pocket pistol.

The one that really catches my interest is the threaded 9mm Mak barrel for the G42, because I want to put a little baby suppressor on it and have a hearing safe gun to use…for things. Perfectly legal things.


  1. I tried one of these barrels in my G42 two or three years ago and it was completely unreliable to the point of nearly nonfunction. The few times it did function it seemed to be overpowered for the design and I wrote off as a lesson learned for subcompact plastic pistols. If you buy a compact 380 it’s a 380, don’t try to hotrod it.

  2. Sure would like to see you make 9×18 barrels for my RIA Armscor babyrock, or for the beretta 84s and 85s (Cheetah).

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