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9mm Conversion for 2011


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I have gone around and around on this for a while: Should I get a 9mm conversion kit for my 2011 (currently chambered in .40) for shooting steel challenge matches?

 

I am currently shooting a SIG SAO 9mm in Limited, and it is so different from my USPSA Limited gun that I have a difficult time switching back and forth, especially on back-to-back match days like I had this past weekend (steel on Saturday, USPSA on Sunday).

 

I have considered going single stack and getting a Pointman or something, but that means a change in division, and I would rather stick with limited if I can.

 

Looks like a new upper is going to cost in the $1,000+ range (slide, barrel, recoil rod/spring, extractor, firing pin/spring, sights, plus machine fitting work). Add mags to that cost...

 

For slightly more, I can buy a whole gun in single stack.

 

Otherwise, I think I am just going to start shooting steel with my .40 and say "screw it". It would be a heck of a lot cheaper!

 

Thoughts?

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Yes it would be cheaper. Are you reloading? If you are you can work up some real soft loads for steel. I shoot with a buddy that just moved from 9 to .40 (to shoot major in USPSA) and he has some light loads just for steel. I believe the only thing he may have had to do it swap out the recoil spring for the softer loads, but other than that it's running fine. 

 

 If you're not reloading, take that $1000+ that you're not spending on a new top-end and start reloading! 

 

If you still are considering going with 9mm, there are some decent priced double stacks (2011, Para, etc.. ) in the classifieds.

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1 hour ago, Doublehelix said:

I have gone around and around on this for a while: Should I get a 9mm conversion kit for my 2011 (currently chambered in .40) for shooting steel challenge matches?

 

I am currently shooting a SIG SAO 9mm in Limited, and it is so different from my USPSA Limited gun that I have a difficult time switching back and forth, especially on back-to-back match days like I had this past weekend (steel on Saturday, USPSA on Sunday).

 

I have considered going single stack and getting a Pointman or something, but that means a change in division, and I would rather stick with limited if I can.

 

Looks like a new upper is going to cost in the $1,000+ range (slide, barrel, recoil rod/spring, extractor, firing pin/spring, sights, plus machine fitting work). Add mags to that cost...

 

For slightly more, I can buy a whole gun in single stack.

 

Otherwise, I think I am just going to start shooting steel with my .40 and say "screw it". It would be a heck of a lot cheaper! 

 

Thoughts?

"say screw it"

or

Load some 140 Bayou at 135 Pf.  In my limited guns they cycle with the same spring 12 or 13 lbs.

and hit with in an inch of my 172 PF loads.

they're easy to shoot and it keeps the same gun in your hand.

(some thing I don't do often LOL, but it is a better idea than changing guns all the time)

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On the topic of softer "mouse fart" loads...

 

Yes, I do reload. I have been using 9mm mouse fart loads for a while, and I find that they are just too unreliable to use consistently. I have a whole collection of recoil springs that I have worked through for the SIG, and just when I think I have it worked out, I start getting random failures that are just not worth it for competition. I gave up and went back to full power 9mm loads with the standard spring.

 

I did work up some .40 minor loads based on some advice I received on this forum, and actually found some decent soft .40 loads, but after my 9mm experiences, I am not sure I want to take a chance. If I can work up a minor load that uses my standard 12# spring for my 2011, I will consider it, but in the back of mind, I will always be expecting a FTF or FTE.

 

I worked up some light loads with Bayou 140, 155 and 165 gr. bullets, and then even some minor loads with my standard BBI or Blue 180's. I will have to go back and look at my data again to see which ones I favored, but I did find a couple of really great loads that seemed to work with my 12# spring in limited testing.

 

EDIT: I just went back and checked a couple of the light load's chrony data, and I had a decent load for the Bayou 140's at about 129 PF (4.2 WST at 1.180"), and a 155 gr. that I got to 134 PF (3.8 WST at 1.180").

 

I am just not sure I want to go down that rabbit trail again after my bad experiences with the 9mm soft loads...

 

I really appreciate the advice and suggestions so far.

Edited by Doublehelix
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On 7/24/2018 at 2:02 PM, schaet said:

Yes it would be cheaper. Are you reloading? If you are you can work up some real soft loads for steel. I shoot with a buddy that just moved from 9 to .40 (to shoot major in USPSA) and he has some light loads just for steel. I believe the only thing he may have had to do it swap out the recoil spring for the softer loads, but other than that it's running fine. 

 

 If you're not reloading, take that $1000+ that you're not spending on a new top-end and start reloading

 

If you still are considering going with 9mm, there are some decent priced double stacks (2011, Para, etc.. ) in the classifieds.

 

i dont even change recoil springs to go between major and minor.

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With blue 180's, I load 3.7~ gr of hp38, which is about 1.2 gr less than my major load.  Poa/poi is close enough at SCSA distances that I have never even monkied with adjusting the sights between major and minor.  I have never had an issue with the load failing to cycle either in my 2011's or 1911's with 12# recoil springs.  This load chrono'd 140 pf at my last major through my Single Stack... it's plenty soft enough without the slide feeling sluggish.  I don't think you necessarily need to get down to 125pf with 40 minor.

Edited by tha1000
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Shoot the 40 with minor loads, it will work if you do you part and make sure the OAL is similar or the same and the recoil spring is not too heavy.    Only shoot one gun so you get used to it and don't bother with switching to inferior guns that aren't 2011s or 1911s!

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I shoot 172PF and 140PF in my gun with the same 13 lb recoil spring.  I also shoot SC with a softer load with a 10 lb recoil spring.  Here is what I found.

 

If your splits in USPSA are in the .2 to .4 second range, recoil isn't going to slow you down in Steel Challenge.  You already know how to recover for the second shot.  It takes you that amount of time to transition to the next target.  So going to a bunny fart load does not confer the benefits you may think.  As long as your sights have settled by the time you reach the next target, you are good to go.  I started with 135gr bullets at 109PF.  They all went bang.  My SDs were not so good, and I'm a little anal about that.  Also, I was afraid i might forget to change the spring when switching to major, so I went back to 155s at 132PF.  I like that load better; however, my total match times are essentially the same with any of the three PF loads.

 

40 minor, at least my loads, are super reliable.  I've not had any failures in three seasons of shooting SC.

 

40 minor shoots softer (and quieter) than the equivalent 9mm load.  So for me at least, it would make no sense to spend a grand on a 9mm upper for my 40.

 

Try a different powder.  I use e3 and it is significantly better than Titegroup.

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