A Glock for All Seasons
Story & Photos By Paul Hantke
I’m not a Glock guy. But when a custom 1911 project introduced me to the 9×25 Dillon cartridge, and I found that Lone Wolf could bring that caliber into my life along with several others via a dingle Glock platform, I had to look into the Glock’s multi-caliber potential.
I’m glad I did.
MULTI CALIBER PLATFORMS – Handguns that can fire more than one version of different cartridges have been around for a long time—they are called revolvers. They function with any length cartridge of the proper bore size if the case and head spacing rim are correct. Some use an auxiliary cylinder for other sized cases, but the bore size has to match, as in pairing .22wmr with .22lr, 9mm with .38/.357, and .45acp for .45 Colt.
Examples that need no other cylinder are: the new .327 Federal, which is compatible with the .32 S&W Short, the .32 S&W Long, and the .32 Federal Magnum; the .38 Special/.357 Magnum from 1935; the .44 Special/.44 Magnum since 1955; the .45 Colt can fire a .45 Schofield; and while rare, there are 10mm revolvers that can shoot .40sw.
Many years ago I tested the first of several versions of a revolver with a unique spring-steel extractor star attachment that would catch, hold, and eject even rimless cartridges inserted into the cylinder. It could fire a .380acp or a .357 Magnum, and everything in between, as long as it had a .357/9mm bullet.
Having said all that, when we take a look at semi-auto pistols we see that it is a much different, and highly expanded world. A shooter can use one frame and create several different versions of handguns.
Just ask me. I’ve been a fan of the semi-auto caliber conversions since I was a young man, and I remember lusting after an HK offering that switched out for four different calibers. There were always .22 conversions for your centerfires, but I didn’t get too excited about those.
I never could afford that HK, but I have had my revenge since then, and now I have compiled a couple sets of pistols that handle a lot of different calibers, and are just a joy to own and shoot.
FIVE CALIBER GLOCK – My five-caliber Glock began on a lark. I had tested a .50 caliber Glock conversion from Guncrafter Industries that impressed me, so I asked to keep it on hand for further testing and ordered myself up a Glock 20 (a 10mm) for a frame.
Back at the ranch, as they say, my old friend Terry Tussey of Tussey Customs, was just finishing up a long-slide 1911 for me in the hot rod 9x25mm Dillon. This is a 10mm necked to 9mm with a good shoulder, and it is a screamer—a 90 grain JHP makes almost 2000 feet per second, striking three inches low at 100 yards with a 50 yard zero and still holding 1300 FPS and delivering more energy at 100 yards than .45acp 230 grain ball ammo does at the muzzle.
This project caused us to cross paths with Lone Wolf Distributors, who specialize in all things Glock, and also have been instrumental in getting the 9x25mm Dillon out to the public.
Proprietor J.R. Shepard was kind enough to sell us one of their custom 9x25mm Dillon reamers for our project, so when I bought my first Glock I thought of them again, as it sounded like it might be fun to also have a long-slide Glock to go with the 1911…and of course I still had the .50 GI conversion.
Working with Luke Johnson, the Dealer Sales Manager, was a breeze, and we soon had a plan in place for a simple long slide in 9x25mm Dillion. I was to contact Truglo Sights and have a set sent over and that would be that. The Truglos are the only three-dot sight I like because the three dots line up when the sight body itself is properly aligned.
That plan didn’t last too long, as Luke quickly pointed out that another six-inch barrel in 10mm would make a nice set, and he suggested that we dress the gun up a little bit.
CUSTOM DESIGN - Well, these guys don’t do anything halfway, and what I got back was amazing. The six-inch stainless slide has a large oval cut-out at the front, which helps keep the piece balanced in the hand and also reduces felt recoil and prevents frame battering from extra weight.
The slide itself has all the handling edges beveled and smoothed, and then of course, there is the engraving.
Starting at the muzzle, there are neat flames running a good ways back on the slide, and these are matched on the barrels where they show through the cut-out. Incredibly, they match with the slide locked open or in battery.
On top, behind the ejection port, is a US Marine Corps Eagle, Globe & Anchor, and my name is tastefully engraved on the ejection port side. The Lone Wolf logo adorns the barrel hood exposure and the back corners of the slide, and a graphic of The Punisher graces the slide dust cover at the rear.
The 9x25mm Dillon barrel has the now (in)famous quote “Smile wait for flash” laser-engraved on the muzzle crown, and the 10mm complements the USMC insignia on the slide with a “Semper Fidelis” inscription.
Ammunition supplies at the time were not a problem, and Mike McNett at Double Tap Ammo provided the 9x25mm Dillon, 10mm, and other calibers that I needed. In the middle of the deal Luke e-mailed me to send my receiver out so they could “make sure it was Okay.” If it wasn’t when it went out it is now, and the gun is not only absolutely reliable and extremely accurate, it has the best trigger I have ever tried on a Glock.
You can check out the sidebar info and the charts for all the specs, and it is easy to see why the 9x25mm Dillon/10mm top end paired with the .50 GI makes for a very nice combo—it can do just about anything you need.
However, my original 10mm top end and barrel were still at Lone Wolf, so I e-mailed Luke and asked him to have armorer and engraver Dan Shepard supply and fit additional barrels in .357SIG and .40sw.
It turns out that Truglo had sent two sets of sights, so they installed them, fitted the barrels, and then engraved just my name on the slide. (I am considering putting this gun on my carry permit, and if ever needed, I certainly wouldn’t want some DA holding up a pistol with flames and other embellishments in court!)
As before, Mike at Double Tap sent out a selection of .357SIG and .40sw loads. I’ve not chronographed these, but the Double Tap stuff is usually pretty snappy, while still being consistent and delivering top accuracy.
Now my 5-way Glock is one of the gems in a rather large collection. The only thing missing is a .22 rimfire conversion, and I haven’t even poked my head out from under my rock to look for one, because then I’ll just have to own one and make this set into a Glock-x-6!
* This article was originally published in Gun World magazine.