U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- In part one of this series, we took a standard 9mm Glock, and kitted it out specifically for home defense. For part two, we’ll be starting with something a little more modern, and spending extra to crank it to eleven.
Before delving into the details of all the components, we need to quickly reference part one’s guidelines for upgrades. The four guiding principles of home defense/self-defense upgrades are as follows
- Reliability – Any attachment or replacement part cannot impede or reduce the reliability of the handgun.
- Durability – None of the replacement components can be more delicate, or substantially less durable than the original factory parts.
- Safety – Any upgrade must not make the weapon unsafe, or compromise existing safety features.
- Efficacy – Nothing added to the gun can objective reduce its effectiveness. So no .22lr caliber conversions, and no race-gun super soft hand-loads.
With that out of the way, let’s dive into the not-so-budget-friendly
Ultimate Home Defense Glock Build: Part 2.
In the previous article, we added several components that enhanced the performance of the gun without any drawbacks. Of those previous upgrades, we’ll only be keeping the Hornady 135gr FlexLock, the Glock OEM extended magazine and slide release. Also, unlike the last piece where we built our gun off of a Gen 3 Glock 17, this time we’re using a Gen 5 Glock 19x.
Barrel: Lone Wolf AlphaWolf Threaded Barrel
I’ve ran an Alpha Wolf barrel on a handful of different 9mm Glocks over the years, and have always been pleased with their performance. The combination of solid accuracy, affordable price, and excellent reliability have made these barrels my go-to for running suppressors.
This is primarily due to the fluting on the outside of the barrel. These parallel relief cuts allow for more carbon to build up before affecting the function of the handgun. And when a shooter is running their handgun suppressed, carbon builds up exponentially faster. This is because more hot gasses are trapped inside the action as the suppressor delays their release.
Another advantage of the AlphaWolf barrel is that it is designed to run lead rounds for cheaper practice. Though given the relatively low cost of 9mm FMJ, this is a fairly minor issue. It also offers a little extra length that results in a little added velocity, and reduction in felt recoil.
Additional features include a knurled thread protector covering the 1/2x28in standard threads on the muzzle. For more information, visit https://www.lonewolfdist.com/
Muzzle Device: SilencerCo Osprey 9/45
After I recommended the AlphaWolf barrel, I’m sure plenty of you saw this addition coming. Indeed, I’m an enormous fan of sound suppressors. Especially in a potential home defense scenario. While many worry that if their case goes to court, the prosecution might paint you as some premeditated killer, a little common sense can go a long way.
For instance, the two biggest reasons to run a suppressor for home defense are specifically to preserve life, not take it. The first is preserving the shooter’s hearing so they can more easily hear commands from an arriving officer if they’ve had to shoot an intruder. That, and if there are multiple assailants, a homeowner won’t be taken by surprise because their hearing is totally destroyed after touching off a round inside a home.
The second reason is to preserve the hearing of your loved ones. Many families have an emergency plan for what to do in the event of a natural disaster. Some also have a game plan for if a home alarm is set off in the middle of the night. The majority of these involve every family member gathering to a central location, usually the master bedroom, and waiting for police to arrive.
But what happens if the initial break-in occurs at that central location. Assuming a homeowner has to use their weapon to defend themselves, they may now be night blind and temporarily deaf. Combine that with enormous amounts of adrenaline, and children running panic-stricken into your room and it could be a disaster waiting to happen.
But with a quality sound suppressor like the Osprey, homeowners can preserve their hearing and keep their wits about them. Plus, if they want to run other guns or calibers, the .45 model can be used for a myriad of different rounds. Hell, with a fixed piston, the Osprey 45 can even safely run subsonic .300blk from a carbine. The only downsides to using a suppressor, are the wait to purchase one, the price, and how it blocks your iron sights. But that last one we’re about to take care of. For more information, visit www.SilencerCo.com
Sights: Night Fision Glow Dome
I’ve personally run dozens of different illuminated iron sights in my life, but these new ones from Night Fision Glow Dome sights are in a league of their own. Available for dozens of different firearms, these new sights combine the ultra-bright daytime glow of fiber optics, with the relatively dim phosphorescent glow of tritium sights at night.
They accomplish this by encapsulating the tritium vial inside the sights with a massive fiber-optic donut. Then both are topped off with a slightly magnified translucent dome that spreads their glow evenly across the front sight. Meaning, the sight is brilliantly bright in broad daylight, yet still dim enough for use at night.
In practice, this means that even when a shooter is running a super bright tactical light, the iron sights will still illuminate properly. Ensuring that shooters can always obtain a proper sight picture, regardless of lighting conditions.
Better yet, the model installed on our Glock 19X is their new suppressor height sights. As the name suggests, these allow the shooter to get a proper sight picture even with an oversized suppressor installed like the Osprey 45 provided by SilencerShop. Visit https://www.nightfision.com/ for more information.
Illumination: Streamlight TLR-8AG Flex
Another Streamlight?! Yep. I really dig the new TLR-8 Flex models. The combination of solid emitter performance and ergonomic modularity is very tough to beat for the price. For those of you who haven’t checked out the first part of this series, the TLR-8AG Flex is a 500 lumen, weapon-mounted tactical light.
It runs said light for 90 minutes on a single CR123 battery and features an integral laser aiming module. This laser can be zeroed for both windage and elevation with an included allen wrench and will run in continuous operation for 60 hours on that single CR123 battery.
These tac lights are identical to previous models in terms of performance. They differentiate themselves from the older TLR-8 lights by the inclusion of new endcaps. Consisting of two ambidextrous end cap switches, these high and low options allow shooters with hands and shooting style of any sort to be able to reach the light.
The “G” model suggested here is a little more expensive than the regular, because it features a brilliant green laser sight instead of a red one. This makes the laser much more visible in broad daylight, or under the intense beam of a powerful tactical light.
One last thing: these lights are not as expensive as they seem. Although durable, powerful and incredibly useful, they are affordably priced. At least, their street prices are. The MSRP of all StreamLight tac lights tends to be much higher than in-store prices. So before you buy one at full retail, do a little shopping around and you can save a ton of cash. For more information including pricing and availability, visit www.StreamLight.com
Magazine: KRISS USA Mag-EX2
In our previous article, I recommend that shooters stick to OEM magazines and OEM base plate extensions. This is still very solid advice; most extended magazines are not very reliable. One very notable exception, are those made by KRISS USA.
Inventors of the KRISS Vector submachine gun, KRISS invented special magazines to handle the super high rate of the fire of their SMGs. In fact, I’ve personally had the chance to run a few of these magazines through their 1,200 rounds per minute select-fire Vectors.
And from my experience, I can attest they are perfectly reliable. So what does this have to do with our home defense Glock? The Vector feeds from extended Glock-pattern magazines. So these overbuilt higher-capacity sub gun mags not only fit, but run fantastically in Glock pistols.
The reason I chose the new Ex2 9mm version, is that it pushes the envelope even further than before. While the original 9mm Vectors simply used the 33-round Glock 18 magazines, the new Ex2 mags are heavier duty and hold an additional 7 rounds. Allowing the shooter to keep 40 rounds in a single magazine. If a shooter then buys an additional magazine to keep by their bedside, they’ll have a staggering 80 rounds of defensive ammo by their bedside. After all, the easiest way to not screw up a reload is by not having to perform one. For more information, visit https://kriss-usa.com/
Ready to Roll
Our little polymer-framed pistol is now a 40-round, suppressed beast ready to defend a shooter and their loved ones from any assailant. Sure, it might look a little ridiculous given the huge size of the magazine or the suppressor, but form follows function.
Some notable aspects missing from this build are optics and an aftermarket trigger. The optics are simple. I personally feel they are too fragile and reduce speed when engaging targets. Some people swear by them, and if that floats their boat. I say go for it.
As for the trigger, shooters would be advised not to install a hyper-light trigger to their defensive gun. The chances of an AD or ND when under stress is too great for the majority of shooters. For those at master level IPSC skills, maybe not. Personally, I wouldn’t recommend any changes to the trigger that would lighten it’s pull, unless a shooter is stuck with a NY-compliant super heavy trigger. And even then, be careful. There’s no telling how a prosecution could use that fact to paint you a psycho just waiting for some poor helpless armed intruder.
Finally, as with anything involving personal or home defense, seek professional training on both skillset and legal ramifications. What is legal in one state, may not be legal in another. Some states even require homeowners to attempt to flee before using lethal force, even in the defense of others. So do your homework – this is by no means a comprehensive guide to the judicial application of lethal force.
About Jim Grant
Jim is a freelance writer, editor and videographer for dozens of publications who loves anything and everything guns. While partial to modern military firearms and their civilian counterparts, he holds a special place in his heart for the greatest battle implement ever devised and other WW2 rifles. When he’s not reviewing guns or shooting for fun and competition, Jim can be found hiking and hunting with his wife Kimberly, and their dog Peanut in the South Carolina lowcountry.