Pistol Compensator?

Discussion in 'Glock Forum' started by Richard Davis, Aug 4, 2020.

  1. Richard Davis

    Richard Davis Well-Known Member

    Until a few months ago, I didn't realize these things even existed, apparently they are now "all the rage". Do pistol compensators make a significant difference in felt recoil? Initially I pretty much wrote them off as the latest EDC fad, but then I was watching a Suarez International video and he seemed to think that getting one would drastically reduce felt recoil (impression was eliminate it). I know better than to expect practical elimination of it, but does it make significant difference? Anyone have experience with one? Thanks.
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  2. rbbeers

    rbbeers Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporting Member

    I've no personal experience with one, but many of my USPSA friends shoot Open Division 9mm Major with compensated 2011s.

    Simply stated, to be truly effective, it seems that the cartridge used must produce A LOT of gas or the compensator is basically useless... that is, cartridges with light bullets and a LOT of powder are necessary to drive the compensator (think 115 gr +P or +P+ cartridges).

    For what it's worth, the following video is one of the more balanced and objective presentations I've seen on the subject.

    Compensated Handguns

    Best regards,


  3. Danzig

    Danzig I do hood rat sh%t! Supporter

    I think it provides an edge in competition but I never felt them as a necessity.
    I had one on my Springfield Armory Defender back in the early 1990’s.
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  4. John in AR

    John in AR Well-Known Member Supporter

    ^ What they said.

    The higher the pressure, the more effective they are. I don't have any pistols with full-blown compensators, but do have one M&P PC 9mm and a .45LC snubnose that are ported. Honestly can't say how much either one accomplishes; the 9mm feels a lot like a 9mm and the 45 feels a lot like a 45.
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  5. Olga17

    Olga17 C19 sounds like G19 Supporter

    I have one on a G17.
    IMHO it doesn't lessen the recoil felt.
    It does lessen muzzle rise which puts follow up shots at a faster pace.
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  6. Richard Davis

    Richard Davis Well-Known Member

    Would you say it does it significantly, enough to warrant a purchase? I mean, I don't think this is a potential game changer purchase, but maybe a worth while addition for a mostly home defense pistol. I don't think that they are generally expensive (?).
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  7. Blue Jacket

    Blue Jacket Member

    I have a compensator for my G40/10mm longslide.

    It made a slight difference on follow up shots firing Underwood rounds. Absolutely zero with a 180 grain Sellier Beloit

    If the money is a stretch, its not worth the buy. If youre competing, using high pressure rds...maybe

    I have my thread protector on her now, with practice, I fire better groups by far...if ya like one, uy it, it wont change your day at tge range much at all.
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  8. Silver-Bolt

    Silver-Bolt Well-Known Member

    I run a comp on my USPSA open gun shooting 9mm major. I am using a very slow powder and pushing a 124gr bullet at 1410FPS. Not something you should ever consider shooting in a stock Glock. The amount of gas needed for a comp to truly be effective is well beyond factory loaded ammo. The absolute best modification to reduce muzzle rise/flip is your grip. A proper grip is much better than any add-on modifications.
  9. rbbeers

    rbbeers Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporting Member

    Also, keep in mind that, for many shooters, 'improvement' is a matter of (mis)perception.

    Very few shooters actually measure their performance... in this case, accuracy vs time.

    The bad guy isn't stopped by (perceived) reduced pistol movement or felt recoil.

    Hopefully, the bad guy will indeed be more quickly stopped by more meaningful hits in a shorter amount of time.

    To that end, does the compensator help... or not?

    And, how do you know?

    For example, I likened the times of a compensated 9mm pistol to a G44 and compared the times and group sizes of a G44 and my G19 here...

    9mm compensator recommendation, post #22

    "My 'SHTF' split times and group sizes with a G44 and G19 at 10 ft are about 0.25 seconds and 2 inches as compared to about 0.30 seconds and 3 inches, respectively."

    Is there a measurable difference?


    Is there a meaningful difference?

    Maybe not.

    Food for thought. :)

    Best regards,

    Last edited: Aug 5, 2020
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  10. Southlake

    Southlake Salt Life Staff Member Moderator Lifetime Supporting Member

    I have a ton of experience with comps, lights and dots. They make a huge difference. This is Mr. Nightstand.
  11. Richard Davis

    Richard Davis Well-Known Member

    Pretty handsome G17. I'm definitely a red dot fan, and lights are needed.
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  12. Olga17

    Olga17 C19 sounds like G19 Supporter

    I bought a ZEV compensator on sale for $92
    This comp clamps on the threads without set screws, no thread damage.
    Would I ever do this again, the answer is no.
    I tend to prefer my G26 compared to the G17 w/comp.

    This is just me and only an opinion.

    As @rbbeers tends to mention grip.
    Grip can make a large difference and it needs to be practiced with an open mind.
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  13. CDR_Glock

    CDR_Glock Well-Known Member

    I have tried a couple.

    One had issues with reliability. Strike Industries. Mainly because it had its own spring. It didn’t require a threaded barrel.

    How you grip the gun does more than any weight addition. I follow Bob Vogel’s method.

    Another thing you can try is experiment with different grain weights of bullets. I perceived less flip with a 147 gr than I did with 115 or 124 gr 9 mm.
  14. rbbeers

    rbbeers Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporting Member

    And, unlike a compensator, a good grip easily transfers from pistol to pistol. ;) :D

    Best regards,

    Last edited: Aug 5, 2020
  15. Richard Davis

    Richard Davis Well-Known Member

    CDR_Glock, that would really make sense in the case of my current EDC P365. I've had/carried small relatively snappy guns before, and the recoil doesn't bother me all that much, but simply trying heavier bullet weights might be optimal. Traditionally my carry loads have been in the 115 to 124 grains vicinity, but the last 5 years I've carried "compact" guns.
    Thanks! When 147gr ball "range rounds" actually become available again, I'll send a bunch down range and see how it goes.
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  16. SixG17s

    SixG17s Well-Known Member Supporter

    Comps are for competition. Like Silver Bolt said "a 124 at 1,410 fps" is not something you would try in a OEM Glock. You have to hand load to get that kind of juice, and then mess with lighter springs to tune it. It is not a substitute for the fundamentals: stance, grip, sight picture and trigger control. Almost any casual shooter would be far, far, far better off taking shooting lessons from a IDPA Master, or USPSA GM/M then to spend $$$ on aftermarket "magic" The other thing is unless you have fast enough splits, no comp will make a difference, like shooting one round every 20 seconds, instead of every .2 seconds....

    I ran a G17L in USPSA Open Division Major 9x19 for years. Hand fitted BarSto barrel, finish chamber reamed to 1.175" OAL, Jeager comp, 13lb spring, running a 125 Montana Gold JHP to about 1,380 fps. That load could KB a OEM Glock.
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  17. SJ 40

    SJ 40 Active Member

    I recently purchased a Suarez International Street Comp but am in the process of moving so haven't installed it yet.

    My intention is to install on a G 19,so time will tell how much of a improvement it is or isn't
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