Comparison of USP vs. VP guiderods and recoil management
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Thread: Comparison of USP vs. VP guiderods and recoil management

  1. #1
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    Default Comparison of USP vs. VP guiderods and recoil management

    I'm a fan of both platforms, and this is not a criticism so don't get feathers ruffled. It's a genuine mechanical engineering query.

    So, I remember reading and hearing lots of hype about the advanced design of the USP guide rod and recoil spring system with double spring design, supposedly cutting recoil down some 30%. And it "stages" for lack of a better word. Okay, great. Works well. Sound design.

    I recently bought a VP40 and was surprised that HK moved to a very Glock-like single guidrod with single flat coil spring, found in Gen1 thru Gen3 Glocks. HK claim is that it cuts down dramatically on recoil... Well I'll be... Hmmm... Glock moved away from this in their Gen4, to a more HK USP type design with two springs.

    HK USP
    Comparison of USP vs. VP guiderods and recoil management-28872-wts-heckler-koch-uspsd-9mm-recoil-spring-assembly-brand-new-img_2943.jpg

    HK VP series
    Comparison of USP vs. VP guiderods and recoil management-stainless-recoil-rod-assembly-complete-vp9-vp40-s-1.jpg

    Glock Gen1-3
    Comparison of USP vs. VP guiderods and recoil management-923568.jpg

    Glock Gen 4-5
    Comparison of USP vs. VP guiderods and recoil management-gen4guiderod.jpg

    So it seems Glock adopted the HK design, and HK adopted the Glock design.

    All very confusing. Is this legit, or a cost cutting measure, or does the one or the other actually work better... ?
    Last edited by leadcounsel; 04-25-2019 at 07:36 AM. Reason: Adding pictures
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    For what it’s worth, I switch Glocks to the single spring design because springs are easier to change and I can tune them for what I’m shooting.

    I believe Glock swapped to increase service life.

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    Legit? What do you mean by that?

    Colt recently went to a dual spring recoil guide rod system, it's all the rage these days, USP was one of the first to go this route!

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    Cost cutting measure by HK imo, however, a flat, single spring is not a bad design. Also, even though the glock spring is now a dual captive design, the way it's constructed is prone to failure. Before I moved away from glock many moons ago I broke two. One in less than 2,000 rounds and another in less than 250. But hey, "Glock Perfection" right? The dual spring and where it locks up to the barrel is much beefier in the USP units.
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  6. #5
    Sheepdog in West Texas

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    Uh, you are all aware that the HK COMPACT (9,.357 sig, 40) has a single spring guide rod?

    just sayin
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    As long as it works don't really care. One of my VP9s has over 24K rounds, haven't changed anything since bought it, works perfectly....this one is my range toy, I'm running it until something breaks as a durability test.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wallew View Post
    Uh, you are all aware that the HK COMPACT (9,.357 sig, 40) has a single spring guide rod?
    And the P/V SK have the dual… tells you it’s designed for the platform (and so much for cost reduction).
    On paper, the single is faster and the dual slower (why the felt recoil reduction). On the SK’s the dual slows the action given the short slide/cycle, now raise your hand if you think the SK is slow.
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    Default Comparison of USP vs. VP guiderods and recoil management

    Last edited by dpadams6; 04-25-2019 at 03:48 PM.

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    Of note is the fact that the USP dual spring setup versus the dual spring setup in VP9SK P30SK is very different in the way that they operate.
    The SK's springs both compress at the same time.
    The USP Outer spring compresses first, and then both the inner and the outer springs are compressed together as the slide/barrel/RSA move rearward an additional 5-6mm.

    The USP recoil system is wild. I believe that Browning would be impressed.
    Last edited by bp1; 04-25-2019 at 04:22 PM.

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    I have firearms with both and I don't really care as long as the pistol is reliable and shoots well. I have read complaints by some on the USP RSA design giving the USP pistol a figure 8 type of recoil impulse. I have shot Glocks with and without the dual spring design and I could not tell any difference and have read much the same from many others. Slide mass/size and other springs in the pistol also have a bearing especially with hammer fired pistols and the hammer spring. I find my VP9 to be an an outstanding shooter as it is. I don't believe the RSA design in the VP9 had anything to do with cost cutting but is by design. Both the subcompact VP9SK and P30SK have a dual spring RSA while the P30/P30L and VP9 do not.
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