Glock Pro Forums banner
1 - 20 of 40 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
756 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What are the advantages and disadvantages of using heavier/lighter recoil springs vs. standard factory?

If you are using a light load (grain) for your pistol, I guess a heavier spring could not be recoiled enough to eject and feed properly. And, a light spring might cause more slamming metal against metal using heavy loads. Does the weight of the spring influence how fast it will cycle and the trigger's reset time?

Hays
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
I am answering only to let you know that for general usage, your handgun recoil spring from the factory will work well for any factory loaded ammo, including light loads. If you reload, and load extra heavy loads, the factory spring set up will handle them too unless you plan to feed your gun a steady diet..then and only then would I suggest a heavy recoil spring change. I am not an engineer nor do I play one on TV, so I will not second guess the designers of the gun. Today's guns are made to shoot hot ammo because the manufacturers know we want to shoot as powerful a load as we can, some sort of macho thing I guess. Now, if you are shooting a vintage gun, well..don't shoot hot ammo in it and don't change springs so that you can! Metallurgy has changed over the years. With having said all of that, if you are a competition shooter shooting the lightest loads allowed for your particular shooting sport and you are after light recoil and speed to get back on target quickly, then you can change the recoil spring assembly to fit that need, but of course that gun would be used for that purpose only. Well I hope that answers your question somewhat, but know that my ramblings are just my humble opinion, of course.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,884 Posts
What are the advantages and disadvantages of using heavier/lighter recoil springs vs. standard factory?

If you are using a light load (grain) for your pistol, I guess a heavier spring could not be recoiled enough to eject and feed properly. And, a light spring might cause more slamming metal against metal using heavy loads. Does the weight of the spring influence how fast it will cycle and the trigger's reset time?

Hays
Hays,

This is going to be an interesting thread, I predict. I can give you some information and a couple of good guesses. First, let's look at the extremes, where a recoil spring choice can determine whether the gun will or will not work. By the way, let's use the Glock term Recoil Spring Assembly (RSA), so that we don't get all wound trying to determine the differences between Gen3 single spring RSAs and Gen4 multiple spring RSAs.

1. If the pistol uses a thread-on compensator on a third-party barrel, recoil will be reduced so much that the standard RSA will be too strong, and the recoil will not open the slide fully. You need a lighter spring in these guns.

2. If the pistol was shipped with, for example, a 17-pound RSA and the owner replaces it with an 11-pound RSA, with no other changes, the pistol will develop very fast slide travel and probably the "slamming" you mentioned. I do not know of a real serious downside to using a too-light recoil spring, other than discomfort. I guess that extra wear will begin to appear, but I think the recoil would be so unpleasant that the shooter would abandon the too-light spring before the gun would break.

The recoil produced by the ammunition has to be somewhere within the ability of the RSA to manage. I had a professor who once commented that I have an "excellent grasp of the obvious", and that statement is a good example of that trait.

Simply put, a too-light load would reveal the inability of the RSA to function the slide (as we saw on early Gen4 Glocks), and a too-heavy load will produce that slamming. I think that most factory ammunition, let's say 90%, can be handled by most RSAs. But there are probably exceptions at either end. I think you are far more likely to encounter problems if you are a reloader and are experimenting at either end of the power factor scale.

Other than making things move faster inside the gun in general (like speeding up the clock), I don't think that the RSA has an effect on trigger reset time. I always associate trigger reset time with the distance the trigger has to travel after the shot has broken (overtravel), and the obvious way to reduce reset time to me has been to reduce overtravel. You don't do that with an RSA.

It will be interesting to see what other responses you get to your post!

Chris
 
  • Like
Reactions: TheLaw

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,884 Posts
....With having said all of that, if you are a competition shooter shooting the lightest loads allowed for your particular shooting sport and you are after light recoil and speed to get back on target quickly, then you can change the recoil spring assembly to fit that need, but of course that gun would be used for that purpose only. ....
Heck of a good point there, about springs in competition guns.

Chris
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,300 Posts
Again Chris gives a great answer. Return springs indeed can help with recoil or make it worse. It of course is something you can "play" with and see what suits you and your style of shooting. I will strongly urge you not to do such with a firearm that you carry for self defense. Please remember the good folks at Glock have matched things so you and your loved ones can depend on them to function correctly everytime when you need it most. Be SAFE.....Shoot WELL
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,962 Posts
When you change the recoil spring weight on a Glock you start down a path that alters the timing of the gun... Sometimes the change is good, sometimes not... If you plan to start changing springs, it helps to understand how all the springs in a Glock interact with each other.

If you were to switch an 11 pound recoil spring for a standard Glock OEM recoil spring... say in a Glock 34 that comes with a standard 17 pound recoil spring... There is a chance that the striker spring could pull the gun out of battery... A heavier striker spring would almost certainly cause the gun to go out of battery... Once you start changing Glock internal springs, you need to test to make sure everything still works as planned.

My thoughts are... If your Glock shoots well with the ammunition you have... Probably best not to monkey around with it... until you have a reason...

Competition Glocks with hand loaded low power factor ammunition are a different subject...
 
  • Like
Reactions: Pistolero

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,134 Posts
What are the advantages and disadvantages of using heavier/lighter recoil springs vs. standard factory?

If you are using a light load (grain) for your pistol, I guess a heavier spring could not be recoiled enough to eject and feed properly. And, a light spring might cause more slamming metal against metal using heavy loads. Does the weight of the spring influence how fast it will cycle and the trigger's reset time?

Hays
The easy answer is "yes".... But, the trick, as has been already mentioned, is degree.... I have a really nice Wolfe guide rod and spring kit that when I bought it, I could just imagine "tuning" my G17L to custom hand loads I'd work up.... Hell, I can't shoot well enough to tell the difference between 4 grain and 6 grain (powder) loads, so I never even tried one different spring and it came with at least 5!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Glock 34 Recoil Springs

I have been shooting my Glock 34 and have been wanting to reduce the felt recoil. I know that a Glock 34 doesn't have that much recoil to begin with but I have been wanting to get it setup close to a competition gun. I want to know how low of a recoil spring should I go to get the results I'm looking for. I'm also not shooting reloads, I will only be shooting factory loads. But I want to be able to keep it functional and not compromise it at all while still being able to shoot 115, 124, and 147 grain ammo. Any thoughts?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,962 Posts
I have been shooting my Glock 34 and have been wanting to reduce the felt recoil. I know that a Glock 34 doesn't have that much recoil to begin with but I have been wanting to get it setup close to a competition gun. I want to know how low of a recoil spring should I go to get the results I'm looking for. I'm also not shooting reloads, I will only be shooting factory loads. But I want to be able to keep it functional and not compromise it at all while still being able to shoot 115, 124, and 147 grain ammo. Any thoughts?
You have to have a total plan to start reducing felt recoil... Power Factor of your ammunition is the determining factor... If you want to shoot different types factory ammunition, the standard Glock recoil spring assemblies are probably your best bet... That's what they are designed for!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
I figured it was a large order to try and be able to accommodation for all three weights of rounds. Is it safe to say that I would be better off going with trying to get my 34 setup for 147 grain 9mm's? In general that is the least recoiling round out of the three correct?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,962 Posts
I figured it was a large order to try and be able to accommodation for all three weights of rounds. Is it safe to say that I would be better off going with trying to get my 34 setup for 147 grain 9mm's? In general that is the least recoiling round out of the three correct?
Most competition shooters shoot a rather heavy bullet at slow velocity to produce a low power factor and less felt recoil... 147gr 9mm bullets are very popular... I shoot 9mm 147gr 925fps velocity rounds in my Glock 34 in USPSA's Production class... Roughly 135 power factor...

Once you change to less powerful ammunition, you will need/want to change out your recoil spring for a lighter one... That will make your Glock shoot a bit flatter... Once you change the recoil spring, you'll want to put in a lighter striker spring... That will keep the OEM strong striker spring from possibly pulling your Glock out of battery when you use a very light recoil spring... It will also give you a lighter trigger pull... Once you change to a lighter striker spring, you might have primer light-strike issues... You might have to change to a lightened striker with an extended tip... or you might want to make sure you're using Federal primers...

This info is strictly for a target shooting gun only...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Thanks jb, now I'm starting to get a grasp on what I'm going to need to do. If you don't mind me asking, what recoil spring # do you use and what setup of springs and striker are you running in yours or which would you recommend?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,962 Posts
WillieSauce said:
Thanks jb, now I'm starting to get a grasp on what I'm going to need to do. If you don't mind me asking, what recoil spring # do you use and what setup of springs and striker are you running in yours or which would you recommend?
The setup I use is not a secret, but it would do you no good because you have a different Glock and you will use different ammunition... Here's something you can try... It assumes that you have a 3rd gen Glock 34 and that this is for a target gun only.

I like Wolff recoil springs... Here's a link to them:

Springs for GLOCK Semi-Auto Pistols

You can see that a stock 3rd gen 34 has a 17 pound recoil spring... Wolff sells several reduced power springs and they aren't very expensive... Buy a couple of springs lighter than the OEM 17# spring... maybe... 14, 15, and 16 pound springs... and a non-captive Wolff stainless steel guide rod... That way you can test out the new springs at the range and swap them out easily if one of them causes malfunctions.

You can also substitute different recoil springs for different ammunition... Should be a good way to use different springs for the different ammunition that you plan to use...

Remember this information is for a target gun only... Not for self defense or a carry gun...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Thanks for all the helpful information guys. I have ordered some new recoil springs in a few different lbs to see what setup I would like to run, a new steel guide rod, trigger group competition pack of springs...all from Wolff springs. I also ordered Zev Tech Z4 skeletonized striker. After everything comes I'm going to install it and see how it all runs.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,962 Posts
Thanks for all the helpful information guys. I have ordered some new recoil springs in a few different lbs to see what setup I would like to run, a new steel guide rod, trigger group competition pack of springs...all from Wolff springs. I also ordered Zev Tech Z4 skeletonized striker. After everything comes I'm going to install it and see how it all runs.
Sounds like you got some good stuff... The GlockWorx lightened striker is nice... I've used one and it worked well... Let us know how everything works out...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Hey guys, I finally received all the parts I ordered. Today I had a chance to get them installed and take my Glock 34 to the range. Heres the list of parts I have installed... 1) Glock Trigger Group Competition Pak. 2) Non Captive Steel Guide Rod. 3) 12 Pound Recoil Spring. 4) ZEV Tech V4 Skeletonized Striker. 5) ZEV Tech Guide Rod Reducing Ring. I shot 200 rounds of Blazer Brass 115 fmj through it without a hiccup. No failures whatsoever. No light primer hits...nothing! It ran flawlessly. Follow up shots were much easier than before. One of the biggest improvements was the lightened trigger pull with the competition trigger spring pak. I can't wait to get the rocket 3.5 connector.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,962 Posts
Hey guys, I finally received all the parts I ordered. Today I had a chance to get them installed and take my Glock 34 to the range. Heres the list of parts I have installed... 1) Glock Trigger Group Competition Pak. 2) Non Captive Steel Guide Rod. 3) 12 Pound Recoil Spring. 4) ZEV Tech V4 Skeletonized Striker. 5) ZEV Tech Guide Rod Reducing Ring. I shot 200 rounds of Blazer Brass 115 fmj through it without a hiccup. No failures whatsoever. No light primer hits...nothing! It ran flawlessly. Follow up shots were much easier than before. One of the biggest improvements was the lightened trigger pull with the competition trigger spring pak. I can't wait to get the rocket 3.5 connector.
Glad everything is working out... Sounds like you're on the road to the USPSA...

Try some of Blazer's 147gr ammo, I think you'll like it...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Sounds like the combo of parts is playing well together. With a 12lb spring you would be able to use some fairly low powered reloads if you wish. 12lb may be a little low if you are sticking with factory ammo. I just did a similar change out on my G17 with reduced power striker spring, 3.5lb Sherer connector, 6 lb trigger spring, reduced power striker plunger spring and KKM barrel. Trigger weight is now 2lb 14oz. As I did this in stages I was able to see the difference each component made. I was surprised at the impact the 4lb reduced striker spring, I put in today, made in reducing the pull weight and feel. I still need to test firing pin strikes for reliability. The KKM barrel cut group sizes in half.
147 grain ammo will feel very different than the lighter bullets. Let's see how you like them. Good luck.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,962 Posts
Yea, a 12# spring is pretty light... I don't think you're actually going to hurt your Glock, but they don't seem to last too long... Made for lower powerfactor ammo for sure... It would be a shame to shoot regular ammo in this gun...

American Eagle also makes some 147gr ammo that's about 1000fps... or try Atlanta Arms & Ammo... or one of the other companies that manufactures match ammo... or maybe a local reloader...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Yeah judgecrater, I was also really suprises on how well the reduced power striker spring improved the trigger. All of the upgrades work well together but definitely the striker spring significantly improved it right away.
 
1 - 20 of 40 Posts
Top