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The explosion in the number of GLOCK Gen 3 clones has apparently been led by some patent expirations. I know nothing of patent law, but I do remember when GLOCK defended their IP quite vigorously. I’m sure S&W remembers as well.

That doesn’t seem to be the case with Anderson, PSA, Adams Arms, and many more who are doing their own thing with Gen 3 Glock platforms. One company doing something different with the familiar platform is Matrix Arms who’s doing things with their MX19 pistol that are breaking the mold.

Polymer No More

Specifically they’re breaking the polymer mold. The Matrix Arms MX19 is an all-metal frame GLOCK Gen 3 clone. Well, mostly metal. It’s an aluminum frame that allows you to attach polymer grip panels, much like a more classic pistol. It’s a truly neat little Glock kit.

You can swap out grip panels to change the color as well as the grip texture. Matrix Arms makes the grip modules, and they’re pretty affordable. Speaking of colors, you get all the tactical options from black to FDE, as well as some fun ones like midnight purple.

As the name implies, the MX19 is GLOCK 19 compact sized. There are two options overall, a standard model and an elite version. The difference seemingly is the trigger.

The various models are optic-ready and compatible with GLOCK Gen3 parts and pieces. The Matrix Arms MX19 handguns also feature a 1911-like grip angle which will please many, a very aggressive grip texture, and a smooth trigger pull.

The guns were a blast to shoot at range day and were very light recoiling pistols. The gun delivers an interesting recoil impulse…a bit different than most GLOCKs. Not necessarily better or worse, just different.

Maybe that’s due to the more rigid aluminum frame. Whatever the reason, it’s enjoyable to shoot. The downside for some will be the price point. It starts at a grand and goes from there. It’s a neat concept that proves what’s old is new.

Polymer is out and metal frames are back! At least they are with Matrix Arms and the MX19.

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  1. I’ll admit…I’m intrigued by the mention of Midnight Purple.

    The coolest “Glock clone” I ever saw was a Polymer80. Back when P80 was a fresh company, they offered their now-famous G17 sized frame in white. Someone combined that white frame with a black slide and controls to compliment their Stormtrooper costume. Nice.

    • Most of my Glock Clones are actually S&W Sigmas that are paired with 3D printed frames.

      Esun offers a lot of colors for PLA+, man you could do something amazing. I’m a poor so I don’t tend to buy Glock kits but I’m sure that there are at least as many if not more frame selections available too.

  2. I’m so used to carrying my P365XL with Magguts high-capacity mags that my G19 is like a blunderbuss. I won’t be carrying anything that size again.

    • It is a good size range for 357sig, 40sw, 45gap, 45acp, 45 super (with proper steps) and probably 10mm as well (haven’t messed with one in that size). With that said have you tried a 365xl with a standard frame and just the pinkie grip extension? Makes for great concealment and that 10 round mag limit feeling.

      • My favorite carry is a P365X with HS507K, Wilson Combat P365 grip module (10 round version) and Armory Craft WC pinky extension. I carry a 15-round magazine for backup. If 26 rounds isn’t enough, I’m not doing my part that’s for sure.

  3. “Well, mostly metal. It’s an aluminum frame…”


    Polymer worked for Glock because the stainless slide rode on stainless rails molded into the plastic.

    Steel riding on aluminum doesn’t bode well for long frame life. Years back I had a Taurus copy of a Beretta 92. The one thing I didn’t like was the fact the stainless slide rode on bare aluminum, so I didn’t run a lot of ammo through it out of fear of a worn-out frame.

    Now, if they figured out a way to wed steel rails to the aluminum frame, I’d think better about it, but as is, I’ll pass…

    • If the Taurus frame was “bare”, that was a manufacturing defect (or a poor choice by the manufacturer). Anodized aluminum is harder than steel, and Beretta-built 92s (while grossly oversized for the caliber) are no slouch when it comes to service life.

      IMHO the best route for a metal-framed notaGlock would be a competing chassis for ZEV grip frames.

      • “If the Taurus frame was “bare”, that was a manufacturing defect (or a poor choice by the manufacturer).”

        Call it a poor choice, then. It was a Taurus 92AFS, late 90s manufacture, and the frame was not anodized…

      • @Umm . . .

        “Anodized aluminum is harder than steel…”

        hmmm.. not always and no and maybe and sometimes. It depends on the type and depth of the anodizing, and the quality of the aluminum and anodizing.

        lately I’ve been experimenting with hard anodizing III to mil spec. been sucessfull too for several lowers I did. but it can come out looking perfect and actually be really messed up and make the aluminum weaker.

        • Aluminum oxide is harder than steel. If someone’s setup failed to produce aluminum oxide (or enough), then sure, but the same could be said of any process.

        • What anodizing can do is embrittle the metal, as I found out when trying to straighten a Shimano derailleur lower… 🙁

    • Was is just the rail surface area to be concerned with or would incidental slide to frame contact be a concern as well like what one would see with a 320?

      • I haven’t seen a 320, so I cannot comment on that.

        All contact surfaces were aluminum on the frame (except incidentals like the slide release, etc.), and stainless steel on the slide…


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