Building your own gun isn’t difficult. In fact, it’s dead simple. At one time, I believed there was something mystical about building your own firearm. It seemed only someone with an engineering degree and years of training on a CNC machine could accomplish such a feat. Then I took the plunge and built my own AR-15 from an 80-percent lower that I machined in my garage. The gun shot great, and I had broken through the mental barrier on what I could accomplish with some simple tools and a little effort. The next project that caught my eye was the Polymer80 PF940 incomplete pistol frame. Essentially a handgun equivalent to an 80-percent AR lower, the PF940 lets you build a full-sized pistol using Glock parts. It’s not exactly a Glock clone, as the shape, style and construction are significantly different. However, the slide, barrel, magazines and all other parts from Glock pistols work.
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The Polymer80 PF940 frame is designed to work with third-generation 9mm, .40 S&W and .357 SIG Glock parts. For this build, I went with standard Glock 17 parts. However, I could have also gone with parts kits for the Glock 17 L, G22, G24, G31, G34 or G35. Completion parts are available in individual pieces from major gun supply shops such as Brownells and Midway USA. However, several specialty suppliers—such as Lone Wolf Distributors and GlockStore—offer everything from completion kits to race gun parts for the PF940.
Why would you build your own handgun? Various reasons, including the satisfaction of creating something to wanting to build something that isn’t available from any manufacturer. For example, Polymer80 offers frames in four colors—something that isn’t available on most pistols. Then you can add your own stippling, a custom slide and an enhanced trigger. Competitive shooters have been building their own 1911-style pistols for decades, and now you can compete with your own hand-built polymer gun.
You can use various methods to complete the Polymer80 PF940 pistol frame. First, the PF940 comes with a jig and the appropriate drill and milling bits. The company offers detailed instructions that seemed to work pretty well. For this particular method, you will need a sturdy vise, a hand drill, a finishing file, 220-grit sandpaper, a drill press with a cross vise and blue or red Loctite.
For this article, I deviated from the company’s suggested method and used a completion technique published by GlockStore. This technique also requires a Dremel tool. Safety glasses are a must for any method. A sliver of polymer can ruin your vision just as quickly as a piece of aluminum.
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In addition to the tools, you will need parts to turn the frame into a functioning firearm. I had a slide and barrel assembly on hand. If I had not, I could have purchased these parts already assembled from various sources, including some of the aforementioned businesses. I needed all of the parts that went into the frame, and I picked those up through the vendors I mentioned. I recommend using OEM Glock parts for your first build. The more you stray from the specific parts this frame was developed to use, the more you increase the possibility of problems.