In case you hadn’t noticed, we sell barrels. Lots of them, and they’re designed to replace the factory barrel in your Glock pistol. We actually make replacement barrels for quite a few brands of guns, but today we’re going to focus on Glock barrels and the Mystery of Lead Bullets.
Glock pistols up through Gen 4 use what’s called polygonal rifling, The Gen 5 pistols are their own animal, and we’ll touch on those in a later post, but for now we’re focused on Gen1-4 Glock barrels. One of the big differences between traditional and polygonal rifling is that shooting lead bullets through polygonal rifling isn’t a great idea. In fact, Glock specifically says “don’t” because it will void your warranty. But why shouldn’t you?
The short version is that with polygonal rifling and lead bullets, as well as some cheap coated bullets, there is an extreme possibility of excessive leading (or build up) in your barrel. When you shoot a lead bullet through a traditionally rifled barrel, the lands gouge into and cut the bullet, and very little lead is deposited in the grooves. This normal build up is minimal, safe and easy to clean. When a lead bullet is fired in a polygonal rifled barrel, which has shallow hills and valleys instead of groves and lands, the lead bullet isn’t gouged, it’s squeezed down by the rifling, and the lead bullet will frequently “skip” over the hills, leaving lead deposits throughout the barrel. As each round is fired this process continues and the streaking lead deposits build up , this build up in turn reduces the barrel diameter, which will eventually create higher chamber pressures contributing to the eventual possibility of your barrel blowing up.
Of course, there are posts found in chat rooms where claims are made of thousands of rounds of lead bullets fired through Glock factory barrels with no issue. This could be possible if due diligence were followed and a rigorous cleaning program were followed. We ask, why would you choose to follow that example? Do you understand that you’re 1) voiding your Glock’s warranty, and 2) risking your own safety? All this risk while knowing full well a standard rifled replacement barrel that is conducive to use with every kind of bullet including lead, only costs $140.
Aftermarket barrels are great, and not just to shoot lead bullets, either. What if you want a threaded barrel using a standard thread pitch, instead of some weird left-hand threaded metric pitch that factory barrels use? Lone Wolf standardized the industry for suppressors and common accessories. I know that the Euro threaded barrels have some kind of hipster appeal, but when you look at the US accessories market, all the stuff from compensators to suppressors are using standard threads, not metric threads. In fact, Glock will actually sell you a barrel for your gun that has our standard thread pitch…they just don’t want to talk about it.
There are other advantages to our aftermarket barrels as well. In addition to threaded barrels, if you choose an aftermarket barrel you can get one in stainless steel, giving your Glock that cool two-tone look. Here’s a fun bit of trivia: if you pay close attention to the Glocks you see in TV and movies, a lot of the time when they’re being fired, they have a stainless barrel in them. That’s because the prop department was lazy, and didn’t get a blank adapter barrel that was the correct color. Another advantage to our stainless steel barrel is that it is the same hardness all the way through. A Glock barrel is (soft) carbon steel with a hard coating, ours is one consistent hardness. Sort of like the difference between a solid bar of chocolate and a dipped cone from DQ. Because of that, our barrels can be cut and re-crowned, which you can’t do with a Glock barrel. Back to our replacement barrels; because in addition to all that, one of the coolest things you can do with an aftermarket barrel is change your Glock’s caliber.
That’s right, you don’t have to be stuck with that .40! We make conversion barrels that will change any .40 S&W Glock to a 9mm or a .357 Sig. Those aren’t the only conversion barrels we make, because you can also convert your Glock 42 to a 9mm Mak which is awesome, or convert you G35 to .357 Sig like we mentioned above, which is kind of silly but also just silly enough to be rad as hell. We don’t just make conversions for Glocks either, although that’s definitely the focus here – you can convert your .40 S&W Shield to 9mm, or your LC380 to 9mm Mak.
There are a ton of advantages to switching your Glock’s barrel over to an aftermarket barrel. Shooting lead bullets is the one people talk about the most, but when you really look at it, there are a ton of great reasons to change. You can also get increased accuracy, normal threads, and caliber conversions! Who wouldn’t want that?