The following is a product review of the ACG-004 Guide Rod Assembly (GRA) offered by Crux Ordnance. Crux Ord is a U.S. based CNC shop which states on their website to produce quality accessories tailored for the competitive shooter, everyday-carry, and tactical application.
- Crux Ord ACG-004 Guide Rod Assembly with the Stainless Steel Gen-4 Adapter (Glock 19, 23, 32, 38)
As I stated in my previous review of the CruxOrd Extended Mag Releases, I recently returned home from an overseas tour and was anxious to get home and try out some of these new CruxOrd parts. One of these parts is the ACG-004 Guide Rod Assembly which I’ve installed on my G19 Gen4. I have a handful of other GRA’s for my G19, but I’ve been very interested to see how well this GRA will perform.
To begin, this is a stainless steel guide rod. There are some benefits to upgrading from factory plastic to a stainless steel rod. I usually observe what top competitive Glock shooters like Dave Sevigny do. He is known for shooting Glocks with minimal modifications, but one of the components he always upgrades is the guide rod. I don’t think he’s worried about the factory rod fracturing; as a few general shooters have reported online. The stainless rod will provide additional weight up front to aide in shooting a little more flat, returning the muzzle for follow up shots faster. Obviously the stainless steel material is more durable long term than the factory plastic component.
Last summer I put close to 11k rounds through my G19 while training, the first 7k where with the factory guide rod. I quickly noticed my guide rod being slowly shaved/scratched and was concerned about my tolerances being adjusted. When I upgraded to a stainless rod it helped remove a small fraction of play in the slide and it impacted my consistency; ultimately my accuracy. Concerns for these accuracy tweaks are more noticeable for higher-proficient shooters, but if you plan on shooting quite a bit and looking for more consistency, I would definitely recommend the upgrade and strongly considering the CruxOrd rod.
Below: Fluted design with oil injection, G19 Gen 4.
The CruxOrd rod has a few additional benefits you should know about when considering which aftermarket GRA to go with. Since all steel GRA’s need to be lubed, lube attracts fowling, fowling builds up over time, which ultimately can cause malfunctions. CruxOrd designed a unique solution; they flute the guide rod to work around this issue. Fouling will build up within the grooves and not impact the surface area, allowing smooth/clean cycles, well beyond the time you should have cleaned your firearm. I’m OCD when it comes to cleaning but I’ve seen how fowling will cluster within the grooves and it’s a great modification. Without removing the spring I just blew any grime out of the groves using compressed air. I still didn’t need to lubricate the GRA because of another perk offered from CruxOrd.
This guide rod is oil injected. The black area around the fluting is actually not a finish but is the oil injection. From the first 500 rounds I put through the G19 I noticed minimal surface decrease of the oil injection but I can see how this will slowly break down over time. The CruxOrd website states this is around 1500 rounds, which is the point you’ll want to begin self-lubricating. I believe this is a great example how CruxOrd just wants to go the extra mile on their products.
Below: Seated CruxOrd ACG-004 GRA in G19 Gen4.
Out of the gate when I put my first rounds downrange, I was able to notice a smoother cycle that is either from the oil injection or the reduced surface area, maybe both. I put about 25k rounds through my G19 a year so I can gauge any change in shooting performance pretty well and I easily noticed this improvement.
The specific GRA I ordered included a Gen 4 adapter ring. The adapter is just a beveled ring which acts as a seat for Gen-3 style guide rod assembly to sit in the Gen-4 Glocks. These adapters are frequently referred to as “recoil assembly adapter rings” if you’re trying to look them up online. There’s a variety of materials used for these, including one I saw before made of plastic but I definitely prefer stainless steel which is what CruxOrd has chosen for theirs. If you already own an adapter, preferably not a plastic one, then you can save 10 bucks by getting the ACG-003 which is the ACG-004 without the adapter ring. I have a three steel adapter rings from different manufacturers and the CruxOrd GRA sits in each of them and cycles with no issues.
Glock’s Gen 1-3 single spring design for GRA’s is considered “tried and true” and has commonly been a preferred setup as Glock initially rolled out their dual-spring GRA in the Gen 4. This single spring setup allows you to quickly interchange various springs to match whatever setup you run. The Gen 4 dual spring assemblies have been out for enough years now that shooters have become more confident with them. Personally I’m a fan of the simplicity and proven reliability of the single spring style so I’m extremely happy with the setup from CruxOrd.
Overall, I’m very pleased with CruxOrd’s GRA and if I would have purchased this years ago it would have cut out a significant amount of my experimentation plus saved me a little cash. These run from $25 to $35 and you can check out the full GRA product line-up on the CrudOrd site. This GRA cycles extremely smooth, the look and function of the fluted design is just awesome. Then you include oil injection, I’m sold.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received the CruxOrd Extended Magazine Release via Spotter Up. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.