As a product review writer, I find excitement in the big, fancy products just like everyone else. Equally, I find the little components that incrementally improve the machine to be fascinating. I don’t believe the next generation of service rifles or sidearms will be a revolutionary leap forward, I believe they’ll be sum of all the improvements and step-by-step evolutions of the current generation of firearms.
A prime example of this is Cruxord’s stainless steel guide rod assembly. While there are plenty of examples out there of factory-equipped Glock pistols surviving over 100,000 rounds, there are also a number of Glocks that have had the plastic guide rod fail. Upgrading to a stainless steel guide rod solves that issue. I can bend the stock piece pretty easily by applying light pressure perpendicular to the middle of the rod using just my fingers. The stainless rod also provides a bit more weight out front, (.95 oz versus .35 oz) reducing muzzle flip slightly during recoil.
In a design move with dual benefits, the Cruxord rod I received for testing is also spiral fluted. This fluting reduces the surface area the recoil spring contacts, thus reducing friction due to drag. This is supposed to reduce cycling times, though I think some pretty advanced equipment would be needed to measure that difference. The other advantage passes the eyeball test pretty easily. As grit accumulates on the rod, cycling the action will push that grit down into the recesses of the fluting and away from the contact surface where the spring contacts the guide rod. Eventually that grit would need to be cleaned out, but in the meantime it won’t be impairing the recoil spring.
The final benefit in the design of Cruxord’s stainless guide rod assembly is the spring itself. Mine came with a factory suggested spring weight, but on the front of the rod is an Allen head screw. Take that apart and you’re able to replace the spring to compensate for wear or to tune your pistol. If you shoot in competitions, with custom ammo, or have significant weight removed from your slide, this could be of benefit to you.
My live fire testing was on a flat range and consisted of both slow fire and rapid fire. I wanted shoot my Glock 17 with both guide rods side-by-side and compare their performances. First I wanted to see if there was any difference in accuracy. No difference that I could detect. I also checked for function, shooting both guide rods using a mixed bag of ammo. From cheap ammo to premier defensive rounds, neither guide rod stuttered nor stumbled while cycling the slide. As far as muzzle flip reduction with the Cruxord rod, if it was there it was a small reduction. Not that I expected a huge benefit, but perhaps a more noticeable one.
It may seem like I’m countering all the marketing claims Cruxord has made. I don’t feel that’s the case, I’m of the opinion that this guide rod assembly’s benefits are shown over time or through custom use. Durability is a tough thing to test unless you have multiple guns and a hundred thousand rounds laying around. I do feel if you’re a shooter with the need for an adjustable spring rate, this is a great option. I think if you don’t trust the plastic guide rod, this is worth taking a look at. At $25.95 this is certainly an inexpensive way to add to your Glock. I believe a little stainless goes a long way, so I’ll be retiring my stock guide rod assembly and shooting with Cruxord’s. If it should ever fail, I’ll write an update. In the meantime, we’re shootin’ fine.