Improve Your Glock 22’s Accuracy: Ops Armory — Captain America

What do you need to do a Glock to make it an awesome combat gun? Well, if you ordered it with tritium factory sights, take it out of the box and put bullets in it. But sometimes we want something else. A gun is a very personal item to some of us, and we grow fond attachments to our favorites. At some point in your life, you are going to want to customize one. Not because it necessarily makes it better, but because it makes it yours. I finally cobbled together the appropriate coins earlier this year for a custom job and chose to do it to one of my Glock’s. Why my Glock? Because if the world ever turns into Mad Max land, I want my pretty gun to still be apocalypse worthy.

Ops Armory

In building a custom gun, I turned to my old friend Aaron Reed, owner of Ops Armory.

Reed, still a reserve SEAL, spent a very long time on active duty and is also a professional 3 Gun shooter on Team Bushmaster. Normally I only consult SEALs about which tanning lotion works best in the southern hemisphere, or how to maintain highlights in your hair in field conditions. But there are exceptions. Needless to say, his gunfighter creds are legit. Unlike some custom shops, I know Reed isn’t just going for pretty aesthetics. So, I sent off my Glock 22 and gave him a blank slate. The results are spectacular.

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Captain America

Ops Armory went with the Captain America theme for my Glock, fitting considering our cumulative time spent in the Department of the Defense (DOD). The finish is beautiful, a distressed American flag finish from bow to stern. Pictures do not do justice to the level of detail in the Cerakote. Reed has been in the Cerakote business for several years and has truly mastered his craft.

From top to bottom, this feels like a whole new gun. Gone are the finger grooves, cut down to a slimmer grip. The frame has been textured, all the way to forward the slide takedown lever. The trigger guard features a double undercut, both to reduce weight and give you a higher grip. The magazine release frame area has been reduced to make it easier to reload. The frame has even been reduced around the slide takedown, making for some very good looking lines while again cutting weight. The trigger is an Ops Armory special, and easily one of the best three Glock triggers I have shot.

Check the full review of the NEW Glock Gen 5.

Up top, there is again no shortage of new. First of all, the slide was cut for an RMR, complete with a cover plate. I actually prefer the Ops Armory cut to the factory MOS. Aaron uses thicker screws, that are less likely to break, and the cut is deeper, making the sight closer to the bore line. The factory slide serrations in the rear are deepened and widened, ensuring a positive grip. Front slide serrations are also added, cut at an angle. Instead of the factory Glock roundness to the slide, it is now tri-cut. This is both an aesthetic choice and reduces weight.

Lightening The Load

On the subject of slide weight, the next part is a bit controversial. Ops Armory cuts lightening windows on top of the slide, further cutting down on weight. Is this a good idea, or simply a cool looking must have in the modern world? The answer is, I am not actually sure. I have had professional shooters I know and respect tell me they would make the slide heavier if they had a choice.

And others absolutely believe in the lightened slide school of thought. The theory is this. A lightened slide has less reciprocating mass, therefore less recoil impulse is felt. Less weight moving backward returns to target faster. The heavy slide guys say more mass absorbs more energy during the movement, results in less recoil. Which one do I believe? No idea. This is my first slide cut gun, I’ll let you know. But I do know this. If you plan to shoot one a lot that has been lightened, increase your recoil spring weight. Otherwise, over enough time, you are risking frame damage from the faster acceleration of the slide moving back. The only slide Glock ever added a lightening window too was the 34, to make the slide weight the same as a Glock 17. Probably some smarts in that somewhere. Either way, the Ops Armory one looks totally badass, and style points do count.

Lasting Impressions

All in all, I am very happy with how my Ops Armory Glock turned out. It is a beautiful gun, a conversation starter, and a tactical wonder. Why consider customization? Well, to start a better trigger can help improve accuracy. Also, as many have removed with a mere belt sander— the finger grooves on the Glock 22 Gen 3 don’t fit everyone’s hands. If you’re looking for a shop to update your current Glock and improve it, consider checking out Ops Armory. This customization project cost about $1,200, and it was worth every penny.

For more information about Glock’s lineup, click here.

For more information about Ops Armory, click here.

To purchase a Glock 22 Gen 3 on GunsAmerica, click here.

About the author: Clay Martin is a former Marine and Green Beret, retiring out of 3rd Special Forces Group. He is a multi-decade and -service sniper, as well as 3-Gun competitor and Master ranked shooter in USPSA Production. In addition to writing about guns, he is the author of “Last Son of The War God,” a novel about shooting people that deserve it. You can also follow him on twitter, @offthe_res or his website, Off-The-Reservation.com

{ 27 comments… add one }
  • Warren January 9, 2018, 1:50 pm

    If this is a working gun, something to be carried daily and has the potential to be used in an actual shooting: Be advised it will most likely be seized and held as evidence. You may or may not ever see it again. Even if it were in the right and acted properly.
    Attorney fees are expensive, A reliable unmodified pistol would fill the need and be cheap enough to consider as the price of doing business if it held and not returned. An opposing Attorney could have you testify against your self as to why the mods, is it stock, is factory safe, did you?
    Clay, I love Ya man, but you were offended by an LE wearing the US Flag shoulder patch backward and the improper use of morale patches and then paint up a pistol with the RED, WHITE, and BLUE – Captain America Theme. That is OK. But is that proper?

  • Gregory Romeu January 8, 2018, 2:09 pm

    I bought a used Glock model 22 for $475 dollars and I can still shoot Expert to Marine Corps standards. If I walk up to a bench and pick up a model 1911 in 45 caliber I wI’ll shoot Expert with it. If I pick up a Ruger model 85 n .38 cal. I will shoot expert with it. I don’t need a bunch of high dollar I’m all looking bullshit on any weapons in order to shoot expert. I just need a weapon in the am all and whatever I’m shooting at. Perhaps instead of the illogical idealism of aesthetics and, “upgrades” of a firearm, you should focus to try and make yourself an expert shot by follow the Marine Corps manual on how to actually shoot a weapon and rely on that along with PRACTICE? Why? Because when it comes to that split second decision to save your life with ANY firearm, I don’t think that you’re super duper Captain America Zombie Apocalypse pistol is going to do you Jack or shit!

  • A;ex January 8, 2018, 12:01 pm

    $1200 for destroying a good working Glock? Give me a break! None of the shit did to the gun improve accuracy.

    • Scotty Gunn January 8, 2018, 2:26 pm

      But,but,but now it’s TactiCool. It will intimidate the bad guy into giving up without a fight. Which is good , because that $1200 could have gone for a lot of ammo and a range membership. Give it a year in a holster, it’s not going to look cool anymore…..

  • NeoBlackdog January 8, 2018, 9:27 am

    Good Lord! Every mall ninja from here to the far side of the moon is gonna want one of those!

  • TG January 8, 2018, 9:11 am

    I read ‘accuracy” and saw an aftermarket ss barrel in picture. I thought I would be reading of a hard fit barrel and
    small 25 yard groups, instead of bling.

  • Andy January 8, 2018, 8:48 am

    My first thought: it’s an “Alien” movie prop.

  • James January 8, 2018, 8:42 am

    If this is the case why do all the compition shooters put lighter recoil springs in their guns? I get less felt recoil with the lighter spring and you get no dipping on slide returen. I’m going to guess this is because the gun starts to unlock sooner makeing recoil feel less.

    • A;ex January 8, 2018, 11:43 am

      No, you don’t want the gun to unlock sooner than it was designed. The pressure needs to drop to a safe level before the slide starts to move and unlock otherwise you risk case blowback or detonation outside of the gun, a very dangerous situation. Also, a lighter spring will cause the slide to hit the frame with excessive force and therefore prematurely damage the gun.

      • Gregory Romeu January 8, 2018, 1:44 pm

        You forgot to factor in the drag against the magazine spring v. whatever one of dozens of brands of whatever ammo you are using and the elliptical balance of the sun and moon in relation to the eve and flow of the rides in relationship to parametric pressure while darting when you pull the trigger?

  • Fidd Elmore January 8, 2018, 8:15 am

    Maybe I’m a little dense. I failed to understand how the mostly cosmetic treatment affects accuracy. Perhaps if you included the word “practice?”

  • Ray S. January 8, 2018, 8:14 am

    “Improve your Glock 22’s accuracy”. No before and after accuracy testing so we don’t know if it helped at all. Looks ugly as sin, and $1,200 on top of your original price well worth it?????? Looks like something one of my kids played with years ago.

  • RySpyNC January 8, 2018, 8:13 am

    17L slide also features a window/slide cut from factory

    • A;ex January 8, 2018, 11:50 am

      Glock builds every model with the same 17-pound recoil spring. So for a larger caliber, the slide will be thicker and heavier. The slide on a Glock 20 or 21 is thicker and heavier than that of the Glock 17 or 22 etc. So for their long slide models, they need to cut weight saving holes so the net effect of 17-pound spring and weight of the slide remain the same.

  • Fidd Elmore January 8, 2018, 8:12 am

    Glock 34 was the only one they put cuts in? Are the G17L, G24, et al. models all modified by third parties before being sold as brand new Glocks?

  • Yalc Nitram January 8, 2018, 7:02 am

    Maybe i was a little harsh….nice work by Ops Armoury (not my taste), nice article (nice pics) but don’t put “accuracy” in title of you don’t cover that. thanks

  • Douglas Shelley January 8, 2018, 6:35 am

    $1.200 to maybe improve a .22 pistol? Your articles will now arrive to my Spam folder. Bye.

    • Fidd Elmore January 8, 2018, 8:09 am

      Um…Glock does not make a .22 pistol. The Model 22 is a .40 caliber unit. Your spam folder is the best place for such articles as you appear to not understand the subject. Bye.

    • Jr. January 8, 2018, 8:21 am

      Cost concerns aside, the subject pistol is a Glock 22 which is chambered in .40 S&W so . . .

    • PA G January 8, 2018, 11:08 am

      Glock 22 is .40 S&W caliber full-sized frame. Give the guy a break.

  • Yalc Nitram January 8, 2018, 4:30 am

    Wow! This is why some of us think (some) gunwriters are dumber than the guys at the gunshop selling. Them… THE TITLE WAS ABOUT ACCURACY!! (No numbers mentioned in article, (hint: its about math)) then for good measure you throw in a few insults towards Navy SEALs …slick job bro! Prettier = more accurate?

    • Ron January 14, 2018, 9:50 am

      I take it that Humor is not your thing. Humor is a side effect of high stress training and a high stress environment so your average seal won’t get bent out of shape when someone cracks a little joke about them…but you are right about the title, it should of been something like ‘Customizing your Glock 22’, although a good trigger job will give you better accuracy so now all we need is range time.

  • Jonny5 December 25, 2017, 4:02 am

    Looks a bit chad in my opinion.

  • Ryan Adams December 16, 2017, 9:33 pm

    Firstly, lightening the slide itself increases slide velocity but decreases the mass slightly. From a standpoint that everyone can understand, you can increase weight of a bullet but reduce velocity and get a lighter recoil impulse. Muzzle energy is reduced.
    KE=mv^2. As kinetic energy decreases, potential energy increases. Velocity makes a much larger impact on energy generated. Energy generated will accelerate the slide at a greater rate. F=ma so the force generated is greater. The slide has a larger change in velocity over time, as such, has greater momentum.
    Apples to apples, the heavier slide will produce less “felt” recoil (you’re not going to feel the difference as long as the cuts aren’t too extreme) but will increase time back on target due to the greater potential energy of the lightened slide. Lightening the slide is all about decreasing lock time, not recoil.

    Maybe I should do a video on this….

  • James M December 11, 2017, 5:32 am

    Somewhere I think I can see it. Honestly looks like Joe Blow up the hill was playing with crayons and decided to grab a few cans of spray paint. To each his own.

  • Will Drider December 8, 2017, 11:45 pm

    Aside from voiding the Warranty, the tacticool alterations may have tossed your true long term field reliability in the shitter. The mods removed structure/mass from the slide/frame and in fact weakened what was purposely engineered. Lipstick and rouge is one thing, slicing and dicing is another, l’m not a fan but its not my gear or money either.
    The Headline was ” Improve ….Accuracy …” yet you previously stated you don’t measure it when reviewing handguns. Nothing here either on before or after accuracy that validates the claim. I’ve seen you quickly pound the plates before without the mods.

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