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9mm conversion barrel for competition?


MentalDevilDog
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Hey folks,

My first foray into the forum. I have standard-size frame XD-40 with a 9mm conversions barrel I'm thinking about using to get started in competition shooting. I like the conversion barrel, because it has a thicker barrel wall and adds more weight up front. I included a picture of the barrel. I don't know much about it, since it just came with the weapon when I scooped it up on ArmsList.

 

It seems the 115 gr. brass just barely pops out of the gun and drops within 3 ft of my feet. For competition I was planning on shooting 124 gr. or 147 gr. loads. I was thinking about swapping the slide spring and possibly the guide rod. I just don't want the slide to short stroke and wind up with a stove pipe if a factory load is slightly inconsistent. I have yet to run any heavier ammo through it.

 

1. What are your suggestions for a spring and guide rod swap? 

2. What spring weight(s) would ya'll recommend for more consistent cycling and follow-up shots?

3. I have 600 rnds. of Winchester 9mm (124 gr.) NATO. Would these loads be sufficient/recommended to use for competition?

 

*Also, does anybody recognize the manufacturer markings? It has the EE in the picture and then a capitol "H" on the other side.

 

I know I have a lot of questions, hopefully you guys have some answers.

Semper Fi!

9mm Conversion barrel.jpg

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Standard is a 17# I believe, so you may could drop it to a 14# or so (if they’re available). I haven’t seen much for the 4” guns. 

 

Your ammo will be fine. 

 

What division are are you planning on shooting? Caliber conversion isn’t legal for production or carry optics. 

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I suppose to answer any of the questions, we need to know more about what you plan on doing...

 

What sport?  USPSA?  IDPA?  Steel Challenge?  Other?

 

What division?  (I'm a USPSA shooter, so this comes from knowing that different things are legal in Production vs Limited, etc)

 

The recoil spring and guide rod setup will depend on the ammo you actually shoot, your grip and personal preference.  I'd lean to the side of not changing anything right now, get some matches under your belt and see what, if anything, you want to change.   Since this appears to be a 4" XD, you may find that you want a longer sight radius and/or more velocity with the same ammo, so a new gun may be your next step.

 

9mm NATO ammo is going to be a LOT hotter than what most of your competitors will likely be using (again, depends on sport and division).  Looking at the ammo specs, they are about 148 PF, which, for many sports, is going to be a disadvantage.

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17 hours ago, N3WWN said:

I suppose to answer any of the questions, we need to know more about what you plan on doing...

 

What sport?  USPSA?  IDPA?  Steel Challenge?  Other?

 

What division?  (I'm a USPSA shooter, so this comes from knowing that different things are legal in Production vs Limited, etc)

 

The recoil spring and guide rod setup will depend on the ammo you actually shoot, your grip and personal preference.  I'd lean to the side of not changing anything right now, get some matches under your belt and see what, if anything, you want to change.   Since this appears to be a 4" XD, you may find that you want a longer sight radius and/or more velocity with the same ammo, so a new gun may be your next step.

 

9mm NATO ammo is going to be a LOT hotter than what most of your competitors will likely be using (again, depends on sport and division).  Looking at the ammo specs, they are about 148 PF, which, for many sports, is going to be a disadvantage.

My co-worker is an RO for USPSA in my area and that's where I was planning to start. Although I wish there was an IDPA club a little closer (I'm in Rochester, MN), because I think it just makes sense to train for real life since I carry every day. Per HCH's comments, if caliber conversion isn't legal for production (even if it was a production SA barrel?), then I guess I'd have to shoot Limited or Limited-10. I know I'd probably be in way over my head if I wanted to be competitive, but as a noob, I'm just wanting to learn the course and pace of the sport. I have an XD-40 tactical, but that gets pricey to shoot .40 all the time. I figured I could test the match shooting waters with my 4" XD and 9mm conversion barrel, since I don't have a 5" XD in 9mm.

 

On the ammo topic, why is a PF of 148 a disadvantage? Is it purely recoil? I suppose 148 is nowhere near major PF, so it wouldn't really be a help, huh?

 

 

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HCH is correct that caliber conversions are not Production legal, so you'd have to shoot 40 in Production or shoot Limited or L10, as you already mentioned.

 

Chances are that you're not going to be competitive when you first start out... nobody really is.  There may be some exceptions, but I haven't run into any.  The best thing to do is to read the rulebook so you know what you can and cannot do, go the match, ask questions and, most importantly, be safe.  You having a RO in your circle will help because you can discuss a lot with them before the match.

 

Since you don't appear to reload, 9mm is going to be quite a bit cheaper to purchase.  If you do reload, or start, you can cut the difference down a lot and load whichever you prefer for about the same cost.

 

Yes, 148 PF is going to be a bit of a disadvantage because of the recoil.  Minor is a min of 125 PF and major is a min of 165 PF.  At 148 PF, you'd be shooting 1/2 way between minor and major.  Most folks shooting minor will be shooting about 130 PF.   

 

But, honestly, that's not really going to matter when you start out shooting USPSA.  600 rounds will get you through about 4 matches (at least in our section), so go ahead and shoot it, but you'll probably want to find some ammo with a little less recoil when you buy more.   

 

If there's someone that you trust, who reloads for USPSA and does well in Production, you could ask to put a couple of their rounds through your gun after the match so you can see/feel the difference.

 

Most folks won't notice a variation of 5 PF, but more than that can be noticeable.

 

Even if the 9mm NATO ammo was making major, you can't shoot 9mm major in Limited/L10, but I like the way you think! ;) 

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  • 8 months later...

Converting from 40 to 9 is not recommended unless you are willing to swap out extractors also. The 9mm extractor has a very different profile than the 40, making it nearly impossible to get reliable extraction. Been there, done that. Springer Precision makes an aftermarket extractor that will work out of the box for 9mm. It does require a special tool to get swap extractors, and complete disassembly of the slide to accomplish this. If you want to use Springer's extractor in a 40, you will have to reshape its contour.

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