Last September I decided to switch platforms and went from the M&P Pro to the Gen4 Glock 34. I built it as a USPSA competition gun that would still be Production legal and posted about the process in the article, “The Ultimate USPSA Production Glock Project,” where I outlined the rationale behind the options I chose and the modification that I made to it. After that I posted range reports and updates which, spoiler alert, were all glowing. I adore the platform and it’s really been working for me. So with that in mind I decided to acquire another G34 and build it up identically to the first one as to have a back up gun in case my primary gun ever had an issue during a match. I also dry fire. A lot. And the grip tape I use, the Dawson Precision pre cuts, don’t fare well with the amount out dry fire I do, not to mention my hands just take a beating from it as well. I figured I’d run grip tape on my primary and none on the backup gun and only dry fire with the backup gun. Well, that at least was the initial plan.
I rounded up all of my old invoices and tried to reorder all of the parts I used on the original G34 but was having a hard time finding some of the parts anywhere, so it was time to make some tough choices about what to do. It’s easy to stick with what you have and never try anything new, after all, it’s been working for me, right? But it does pay to be open minded and try out new things because you never know, you just might like it better than what you’ve been doing. So with that I made a few different choices around the parts I selected this time to see what I like better and who knows, maybe I’ll be faster with it. We’ll see.
I’ve been a big fan of the Dawson Precision fiber optic sights for year and have them on every competition pistol I own. But when I wen to order them for this gun I couldn’t find the ones I’m using in stock anywhere. So after a little research I decided to go with the Taran Tactical Ultimate Fiber Sights since they seem to be well thought out and the price is right. I am anxious to see where their POA/POI is, and I hope it’s agreeable.
The other and probably most noteworthy deviation from the first G34 is that trigger. I’ve been using a Vanek Classic-GM Trigger Kit with a Jager striker since the beginning and can’t say I’ve found a better trigger. I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with Charlie a couple of times and he really puts a premium on reliability, not just outright performance. And I can attest to the reliability of the system because it has delivered almost 7000 rounds of flawless performance since I put it in and about a zillion “rounds” of dry fire. In fact he was instrumental in the development of the Jager striker which was a perfect accompaniment to his trigger system, but it proved to also be his Achilles heel since sourcing the part from Jager has been impossible due to manufacturing issues. I looked at using the stock striker with his kit and even the ZEV skeletonized striker but wasn’t sure it would provide the compatibility and reliability I was after. After some more research I, pardon the pun, pulled the trigger on the ZEV Standard Trigger Kit with all of the addons which does include their skeletonized striker. I figured all of these parts should work fine together since it’s a kit, and although I do want performance, reliability trumps speed.
Here is the complete list of the parts I ordered for this version of my Ultimate USPSA Production Glock:
- Taran Tactical Ultimate Fiber Optic Sights Set
- Glockworx Standard Deluxe Trigger Kit
- Jager Polymer Guide Rod for Gen4
- ISMI Glock Flat Recoil Spring (13lb)
- Jentra GEN 4 frame plug
- Glock OEM Extended Magazine Release
Well all of my parts arrived yesterday and I tore into it immediately. The first thing I did was inspect the ZEV trigger to see if it looked much different than the OEM version, and boy did it. ZEV has dramatically changed the geometry of the parts, namely the trigger bar which is barely recognizable if you’re familiar with a OEM version. I’m not sure how I feel about that. Not to be a Luddite, but the system was built to run a certain way and these changes do make significant modifications to the mating surfaces and how the parts interact with each other as well as the timing. We’ll see.
The sights are the other big deviation from the last build, but they do look promising. I like that the fiber optic is right at the top of the front sight blade which is the primary reason I went with them. They went on easily and didn’t even require the Glock sight pusher to install, just some light tapping with a nylon tipped gunsmith hammer. I centered them up and put a small amount of thread locker on the set screw, installed a piece of red fiber, and they’re good to go. Just doing a few minutes of driving the gun around the dry fire targets in my garage and I’m already excited to try them out at the range.
The rest of the parts went in unspectacularly as they should, and it was now assembled and ready for some preliminary testing. First thing’s first, try out that new trigger and see how it compares with my Vanek. I’m very pleased with the feel of the ZEV! Very crisp and light with less take up than the Vanek, which is probably due to the adjustment screw in the ejector housing. The Vanek has the same thing, but I’ve never played with it since I hear it’s easy to alter the safety of the pistol if done improperly. The Vanek is smoother, but it’s also been pulled quite a bit so it’s a little hard make a fair comparison at this point. But if the ZEV smooths out (not that it’s bad now) with some use and proves to be reliable it’s going to be a great trigger system!
I’m really looking forward to getting this thing to the range and try it out, and was even tempted to try it out at this weekend’s match, but I really thing that would be a mistake since it hasn’t been proven yet. I am champing at the bit to try it out though! Whatever sights seem to work best after some serious testing with both in some head to head scenarios will be my platform of choice and will be on both pistols. I’m big on standardization and I want my dry fire gun to have an identical sight picture to my match gun. I’ll report back how it goes once I get an opportunity to do some testing. Expect some updates and range reports soon!
Until then, you can read about the first Glock Gen 4 G34 Production gun I built here: