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Old August 7, 2014, 07:25 PM   #1
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Lights on Glocks

I was reading on TFL that some people experienced reliability issues with Glocks that have lights on them. Specifically in the bigger calibers (.40, .45, 10mm) Can anyone comment on this? Especially people who have put a Surefire X400 on a .40 and 10mm Glock. Lastly, do compacts/subcompacts experience these issues more
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Old August 7, 2014, 08:10 PM   #2
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I just wrote about this subject on another thread. One of my shooting buddies has the .40 Glock...the one that is about the same size as the G19. 23? He put a Veridian green laser/light combo on it and it began malfunctioning. Couldn't make it through a mag, even several shots. He let me borrow the light for awhile, at which time I put it on my SIG P226 Tacops. It never has had a problem. I bought my own, gave his back, and he put the light on his CZ SP 01 and it never had a problem as well. I tried out my own light on the new XDm Compact that I recently purchased, and didn't have any issues either.

Just something about the pressure on the frame seems to cause this to happen to some Glocks.
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Old August 7, 2014, 08:54 PM   #3
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Glock frames do have some inherent flexibility in them. Heavier rail-mounted accessories (relatively speaking) tend to create more malfunctions than lighter ones - so the problem definitely seems to be about frame flexibility. I'm not sure that Glock did anything to beef up the forward portion of the frames, when they introduced the rails (they don't appear to be thicker in that area, as compared to the earlier non-rail guns, at any rate).

Perhaps a bit of a design error, on the part of Glock, depending on your point of view. (I don't like rail-mounted accessories, anyway, so I couldn't care less myself.)
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Old August 7, 2014, 09:36 PM   #4
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It's a potential issue with .40 Gen3 Glocks (G22 and G23). Stiffer mag springs usually solve the problem. I have not heard of it with the Gen4s.
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Old August 7, 2014, 10:03 PM   #5
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I thought part of the reason for the new springs was to help with this in Gen 4?
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Old August 7, 2014, 10:09 PM   #6
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I think it's only a gen 3 issue. I have an x300 on my gen 4 23 and have had no malfunctions shooting with the light.
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Old August 8, 2014, 07:35 AM   #7
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I've never had an issue with lights on any of my Glocks. G-19,17, 20, 21, and 23.
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Old August 8, 2014, 08:50 AM   #8
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This is a common occurrence in Glocks; I see it on a regular basis. The usual culprit is typically worn recoil and mag springs. So the first thing I do will change them but sometimes that won’t even fix the problem. I normally don’t see this happen with a new out of the box guns. However I did see it on a real regular basis when the Gen 4 first was released. Glock quickly got word and changed the recoil spring and that fixed the problem for the most part on the new Gen 4
Someone already stated the problem with a light on the Glock is it changes the way the frame flexes during recoil this is correct and the fix from Glock was they shortened the slide rail tabs. By shortening the tabs it also decreased the friction enough to allow the gun to function properly again. They also went from 10 coil magazine springs on the model 22 to an 11 coil spring.
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Old August 9, 2014, 10:55 PM   #9
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Same here. No issues at all with a TLR-1HL on my 19 or 30 and just started shooting with it on my 41. Also going well.
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Old August 9, 2014, 10:58 PM   #10
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I've heard of lights flying off but that has to do with the light, not the gun.
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Old August 9, 2014, 11:03 PM   #11
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Never had an issue using a light or a bayonet with my gen 3 23.
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Old August 10, 2014, 12:17 AM   #12
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I've got a Gen 3 20-SF w/light, no issues. About 2K rounds down the pipe so far.

Makes me wonder if it ain't more of a Limp-Wristing issue than a light issue...
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Old August 10, 2014, 02:39 AM   #13
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The whole point of the Gen 4 spring system is to fix the problems caused by .40 Gen 3s with lights.

Glock frames are among the most flexible - and that flex is part of the design. Glock didn't redesign the way the guns worked when they added a rail to the mold. The increased stiffness of a light changes the way the gun works. For .40 it has been an issue.
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Old August 10, 2014, 03:48 AM   #14
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I was issued a Glock 21 Gen 3 with a tac light. It never caused a problem with thousands of rounds fired. I was just issued Glock 21 Gen 4. We'll see how it goes, but I don't expect any issues.
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Last edited by Departed402; August 10, 2014 at 01:36 PM. Reason: addition
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Old August 10, 2014, 05:31 AM   #15
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This goes back 8+ years ago. Glock 22s with Surefire X200 lights. Evidently the X200 light would bind the frame and prevent it from flexing as designed. Part of the fix involved the replacement of the standard magazine spring. I thought there was something else recommended, but it escapes me at the moment.

Edited to add:

Found this in the Streamlight FAQ:

Q: Are there Issues Using Tactical Lights on Glock® Pistols?
A: Some Glock® .40 caliber pistols, models 22 and 23, exhibit feeding malfunctions, either nose down or nose up (stovepipe), when used with tactical lights. The problems tend to occur with individual guns, with some pistols becoming totally unreliable while other identical, even close in serial number sequence, guns have no problems. Most models 22 and 23 are reliable.

A sensitive gun may malfunction with any tactical light - the TLRs, the older M models, and even Glock®’s own brand. There is evidence that the problem sometimes develops with use, and may progress until the pistol is unreliable even with no light attached.

On the basis of testing by Streamlight, we believe the problem is magazine related. It appears that the rounds are unable to rise fast enough for proper cycling. We have observed proper feeding for the first few rounds, consistent failures at mid-magazine capacity, and a return to proper feeding of the last few cartridges in the magazine.

We have tried both stronger and weaker recoil springs, and compound-action recoil buffers, all without success. Sometimes new magazine springs, either new Glock® or Wolff, will cure the problem. In one case of a pistol which was totally reliable when new but progressed to malfunctioning on every magazine, even with no light installed, we found two solutions which restored reliability, but which might not be acceptable to some users. The first was using 10 round capacity Glock® magazines. The gun will not cycle reliably with 15 round mags with their steeply stacked columns but works flawlessly with 10 round mags. The second solution was a new magazine follower from Brownells®, their part number 069-000-006. When used in a 15 round magazine with a new spring, reliability was restored. However, the follower would not lock the slide open after the last round.

Ammunition is also a factor with any weapon. Some brands and weights may be totally reliable while others jam repeatedly. Make sure your gun is thoroughly tested with your duty ammo.

Brownells® is a registered trademark of Brownells®, Inc.
Glock® is a registered trademark of GLOCK Gesellschaft mbH.

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Last edited by mbott; August 10, 2014 at 05:38 AM.
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Old August 11, 2014, 02:18 AM   #16
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I carry a G22 for work, with a TLR-1. It has probably 2k rounds through it with no problems. I also have a TLR-1 on my G19, which I have no clue how many rounds through it with the light attached, but it has to be in the 5k range. Maybe I'm just lucky, or the problems are coming, but no issues with either weapon.

both of these are Gen4's if it matters.
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Old August 11, 2014, 03:27 AM   #17
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The problem with lights was Gen 3. Gen 4 was the fix, but had other problems.
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Old August 11, 2014, 09:08 AM   #18
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Once again, this problem only occurs with some Gen3 .40 caliber, Glocks, and it is well documented. Those references to other calibers are irrelevant.
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