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Working up a 9mm match load for Glock 34

leeblackmanleeblackman Member Posts: 5,303 ✭✭
I'm trying to work up an affordable match load for my Glock 34 for USPSA and IDPA. I have a Springfield XD 5" 9mm as a backup gun, so I want to be able to kinda go back and forth with the same ammo.

Currently I loaded 115gr Berry's MFG 9mm RN Plated bullets with 3.9grs of VV N320 using once fired winchester brass and Magtech small pistol primers.

The load data from VV's website states 3.9grs to 4.4grs. And a minimum OAL of 1.142 with a max of 1.169. Now I measure what I was using before which is winchester's white box 9mm 115gr FMJ and it has COL of 1.158" so that is what I loaded my loads to. However my Lee breech lock press using Lee's seating die has about .008" of play in seating depth between cartridges which means mine come out anywhere from 1.154 to 1.162.

Now I'm not the most accurate shooter out there, so to be honest until I get a pistol rest there really isn't any way I can test my accuracy between cartridges. But this load seemed to hit where I was aiming. I put about 300rds thru my glock and it fed reliably until I attempted to use KCI brand magazines with it. However I had alot of failure to eject malfunctions in my XD. Like it didn't have enough power to make the slide cycle to the rear hard enough to spit the case out. Seeing the hole on paper I knew the rounds weren't squibs, and a standard hand swiping over slide stove pipe clearing technique would clear it. So I'm thinking maybe working up the load from the manuals starting 3.9gr to about 4.2gr.

Now I already had the VV N320 sitting around, and I want to avoid flake powders because the powder measure I'm using doesn't handle flake powders that consistent. But if there is another recommended powder for 9mm I'm more than interested to know what it is.

Any advise is welcome.

One question I have are, should I start using a heavier bullet, like a 147gr or 124gr? Are these bullets going to allow a more accurate load in either my Glock 34 or XD 5"? I have no idea what the twist rates are in either barrel, and even if I did, I wouldn't have a clue what bullet to use. All I know is I can't shoot lead thru my glock.


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    shoff14shoff14 Member Posts: 11,994 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    The XD's seem to have pretty stiff springs. I have had to go on the hot side with loads to get them to cycle properly.
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    leeblackmanleeblackman Member Posts: 5,303 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    I increased the powder to 4.4gr of VV n320 and changed the COL to 1.143". Tomorrow I'm taking out my chronograph and testing in a few different handguns.
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    haroldchrismeyerharoldchrismeyer Member Posts: 2,213
    edited November -1
    I didn't think you were supposed to use anything but jacketed bullets(not plated) in a Glock. I didn't think they even were supposed to be fed reloads.

    In reality, accuracy isn't that important in these matches. The main thing is reliability. Make sure it functions, or your day at the match will not be any fun.
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    TopkickTopkick Member Posts: 4,452 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    The Berry's site says they are fine for Glocks and there is quite a following.

    I started at lead bullet velocities when starting loading, but had cycling issues, mostly failure to eject.

    I had to kick the charge up closer to max.

    I use Unique, Tite-Group, and my favorite HP-38.
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    leeblackmanleeblackman Member Posts: 5,303 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    So here are my current results, tested on my chronograph.

    9mm Luger
    115gr Plated RN Berry's MFG
    4.4gr VV n320
    Magtech Small Pistol Primers
    Once Fired Winchester Brass prepped in tumbler with treated corncob media
    COL 1.143" with Light taper crimp

    Fired thru Glock 34 with 5.32" bbl 1 in 9.84" RH Hexagonal twist

    Average Velocity 1093.5fps
    Median Velocity 1091 fps
    Energy at 1094fps 305ft lbs
    Extreme Spread 40fps
    Standard Deviation 13.2fps
    Average Deviation 10.3fps

    Just shooting at 7 yards with both hands not in a vise or rested I was consistantly grouping about 2" or less, and had no malfunctions.

    Now the only problem I have is reliable reloading equipment. The Lee Pro Auto-Disk Powder Measure I was useing lost its tolerances pretty quick. After I broke down everything and set it back up I couldn't keep a consistant measure from it. With the 5.3cc slot which is supposed to put out 4.4grs of powder as it was when I first starting useing it I started getting between 4.2 and 4.4grs. I thought maybe I assembled it wrong and double checked but I didn't. Now 500rds later, its even worse going between 3.9gr and 4.3gr, so I'm taking it back to Cabela's and getting a refund.

    The other problem is my Lee breech lock is still giving me inconsistent headspace, but I found some teflon tape does wonders. But its still a pain. As soon as I can afford a square deal B, I'm getting one. However I just bought a Glock 24c .40sw, so I'm gonna be skimping for a bit to get a decent competition holster and belt.
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    dcs shootersdcs shooters Member Posts: 10,969
    edited November -1
    Get rid of the Lee POS [;)] The one I had cost me two 1911 barrels, one SA the other a Douglas, the most accurate barrel I have ever had.
    My SDB Dillon has loaded about 10,000 rds. and never had a problemwith any settings changing.
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    haroldchrismeyerharoldchrismeyer Member Posts: 2,213
    edited November -1
    I think you need a better powder measure. I don't like the Lee disc setup, I have their better, adjustable measure. It still is picky about the kind of powder, and I have to use Winchester 231 if I want all the loads to be the same.
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    kimberkidkimberkid Member Posts: 8,857 ✭✭✭

    I’m having problems with my Gen4 Glock 34 too. I reload most all of my own ammo including 9mm. I’ve got a Dillon 550 and use the Lee auto-disc pro as well, but I’m getting consistent measurements. I mostly use 147 round nose plated Berry’s bullets with 3 grains of tite-group and it has worked reliably in my Glock 19 & 26, Beretta92, SiG 226, CZ Shadow2 & Scorpion EVO and every other 9mm I have except the Glock34. This load won’t eject at all. I bumped the powder charge up to 3.6 which is max load for the 147 according to Hodgeson load data. With this stronger load when it ejects, at best it bounces off my head or drops at my feet but about 1/3 of the time the slide closes on the case, in an AR it’s a short stroke. 

    For concealed carry, I use Speer 147 bonded Gold Dot and it runs perfectly, In the 34 it ejects about 5’ to my right but I didn’t get the 34 to carry, I got it for fun and have no intention to feed it a steady diet of premium ammo!

    Has the 34 got a heavy of a recoil spring? Are there lighter springs available? 

    Lastly, I put a Holosun 507C sight on it, could that extra bit of weight be part of the problem? I suppose I could take it off and try it.

    I don’t want to have to a specific load just for this one pistol. 

    If you really desire something, you'll find a way ?
    ? otherwise, you'll find an excuse.
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    NeoBlackdogNeoBlackdog Member Posts: 16,654 ✭✭✭✭

    Ditch the KCI mags. Give 'em to someone you might anticipate getting in a gunfight with, it'll give you an unfair advantage.

    I've been shooting IDPA and Defensive Pistol matches for about 15 years and have found that for these type of sports you don't need MOA type accuracy, but you do need to have reliability first and foremost. I've been using 4.3 grains of Titegroup and Berry's 165 grain plated bullets in my 40 cal G35, G23, & G27 for years and more recently in a G24 and have had 0 issues. The Titegroup meters really well in the Dillon 550 and the bullets all seem to land where I point the gun.

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    bpostbpost Member Posts: 32,664 ✭✭✭✭

    My G-34 shoots like a laser beam with 124 GR cast bullets or the 124JHP. I did put a JOHNNY GLOCK match trigger in and the groups went down by about 20 percent.

    My go to powder for it is TITEGROUP. I load 1/10th below book max on a Dillon 650 press. Until you can control the trigger, call your shots as they break the accuracy of the load is secondary in my experience. I can shoot real crappy with super accurate loads because I have not laser focused my mind on the trigger squeeze. Conversely I can shoot great scores with practice ammo as long as I tell myself "its the trigger squeeze dummy".

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    JustCJustC Member Posts: 16,056 ✭✭✭

    124gr-147gr pills. To me and several others, the 147gr have much lower felt recoil, which translates to smaller groups.

    N330 and cci primers.

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