2nd Amendment to the Constitution of The United States of America

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

"I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians."
- George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Glock...Combat Tupperware indeed!

First off, if you think that there has been a lot of Glock posting going on around these parts...you're right. Thanks for paying attention.

If you are wondering about the title, Glocks are sometime disparagingly called "combat Tupperware" because of their plastic frame.

Found this on YouTube the other day...a guy washes his Glock in his dishwasher..

Seems to have cleaned it well enough. I did notice that he used the energy saving drying cycle instead of the heated drying cycle. First thing that came to my mind was I wondered if the temperatures of the heated drying cycle would weaken the frame material. A quick call to Glock in Smyrna, Georgia had me talking with a nice guy in their technical support section that - after laughing at what I explained I had seen and walking him through finding it himself on his computer - told me that Glocks are temperature rated well in excess of boiling temperatures. He would not divulge the name of the polymer used or its specifications but said it was very durable. I also inquired about the affect cold would induce on the frame (cracking under recoil in extreme conditions) and he told me that the Ontario Provisional Police in Canada issue the Glock and it normally gets well below freezing (even sub zero Fahrenheit) with no adverse affects being noticed on their equipment. the tech guy from Glock was actually more concerned about oils and solvents from the gun contaminating the washer and getting on dishes...good point.

So the short answer is the guy is good to go.

But how about a long answer?

I found this over at The Glock FAQ...

What is the Glock frame made of?
The Glock frame is made out of a high-tech plastic polymer called nylon 6. Exactly what that means, I don't know. But our resident engineer [MarkCO] was kind enough to provide some explanation:

Commerical price for hi-grade Nylon 6 is about $3.50/lb. Commerical price for hi-carbon steel is about $1.50/lb. Sounds to me like the Glock is actually a better buy. Anyway, I did a little research and got a smattering of information on the Glock plastic "formula". One source says "more highly guarded than the Coke formula". From 3 human and 5 technical sources, Glock uses an out-sourced proprietary hybrid polymer mix with a base of Nylon 6. The frames are cast and offer high strength, wear resistance, abrasion resistance, and good resiliency, good ductility and toughness. Fracture mechanics are excellent with defect ratios below 1. Do not compare to extruded Nylons because it is different. Casting prices range from $3-$50/pound depending on process and intricacy. The Glock is considered highly-intricate due to imbedded metallic components. Offers long term performance at elevated and depressed temperatures. Chemically stable in a majority of environments, attacked directly by strong acids and bases (better than steel actually). UV exposure results in degradation over an extended period of time. 2-3% carbon black virtually eliminates UV degradation and Carbon-Black does not become readily absorbed in Nylons offering higly increased useful life spans. Loss of mechanical properties with 2% Carbon-Black is less than 0.05% on an elevated UV exposure test equivalent to approximately 100 years. Hyrdolytically attacked by water in excess of 120 degrees. Basically, no hot-tubbing with your Glock and you will be fine. Tupperware is not made from Nylon BTW. Hope this answered some questions.
Good Shooting, MarkCO

Well, that seems to indicate that the Glock may not be as indestructible under hot AND wet conditions as I was told by the factory tech guy. Keep in mind he told me that the Glock would withstand TEMPERATURES in excess of boiling temperatures, he never actually indicated any other conditions for this statement. Further researching Carbon 6 (the polymer Glock frames are supposedly made from) shows that the frame itself can actually absorb water due to its chemical composition. I would think that absorbing extremely heated moisture couldn't be that good for the material. In their defense I am sure Glock never intended for their pistols to have to withstand this type of environment. I am sure Glock has some type of patented variat of Carbon 6 that it uses that is probably better than the "basic" Carbon 6 polymer. Still, I cannot find any study or test to show if this amount of damage, if any at all, would make the pistol unsafe.

So the long answer in my book is why this video may make it appear washing your Glock in the dishwasher is a safe (and novel) way of cleaning your pistol, for me I will continue to use solvents, rags, brushes and patches the old fashioned way until somebody can positively test this under laboratory conditions as safe.

I trust Glocks (with my life as my CCW) and am not worried about my Glock's reliability or durability at all. Using common sense with your Glock, you shouldn't either.

But man, that was one clean Glock!! I have never been able to wipe down the rail channels without getting gloop on a patch or rag!!


John said...

Long-time reader, first-time commentor...

Call me paranoid or misinformed, but I'd just worry about the effects of water (and detergent) sneaking into places like the striker housing and other small internal spaces. Maybe the barrel isn't a big deal? That sure looked CLEAN though! Have you picked up the G26 yet? I bought one as my first Glock about a month ago and I love it. Now I'm looking at getting it a 19 to keep it company.

Huey148 said...


Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment...

The striker, plunger and the rest of the "little bits" in both the frame and slide should all be able to resist rust fairly well from some thing like this. Long term exposure to moisture is another thing all together. Glocks can be dunked and then fired so some residual water should be no big deal to it.

Haven't gotten the 26 yet, still not convinced that it would really fill a role or niche the G19 or LCP isn't filling and with Christmas around the corner 4 bills is a bit tough to part with.

Thanks zgain for taking time out of your day to read the blog!

Quartermaster said...

So Glocks are top rack safe?

I'm not serious about this. I wouldn't seriously consider putting my piece in my dishwaser. Kinda strange he would not just consider it, but actually do it.