Recover Tactical makes a variety of accessories for popular pistols like the 1911, the Beretta 92 series, Browning High Powers, the SIG 365, the S&W Shield and M&P, and the various Glock platforms. Probably most notably has been its Stabilizer Kit for the Glock and Smith duty pistols. Well, Recover Tactical has taken things a step further with their latest pistol conversion, the P-IX platform.
The Recover Tactical P-IX Modular AR Platform for Glock
It’s a popular setup that bolts onto your pistol with no permanent modifications. The P-IX doesn’t clamp onto your gun, but rather you drop your gun into a clamshell. As a result, it converts your pistol into a bullpup platform that mimics AR controls and handling.
Why Convert Your Pistol?
Okay, here’s a question I see a lot of folks ask with the various Pistol Caliber Carbine (PCC) conversions for pistols: why bother? It’s still the same pistol underneath, but now it’s bigger. Well, there are a few reasons, actually, but I’ll concede it’s not a concept everyone will want. That’s okay, though, no one is making you buy one if you don’t want it.
First off, a kit like the P-IX gives you more surface area and points of contact when shooting. You can use your support hand to grip the forend or the angled grip if you get it with your kit. Obviously, if you have your pistol SBR’d, you can also use a shoulder stock.
Even without the stock, the ability to add a brace gives you at minimum another point of contact with the cheek weld, or the occasional shouldering of the weapon allowed by ATF for the moment.
Next up, is the ability to add optics of various sorts and other AR modular accessories including pistol grips, buffer tubes, stocks, flip up sites, lights, and lasers. If you’re running a stock gun, especially an older one that isn’t optics ready, then a kit like the P-IX lets you upgrade without modifying the pistol itself.
Third is that they’re a lot of fun. The P-IX kit gives your otherwise boring pistol a cool subgun vibe, and it’s fun to shoot. Honestly, not everything in life has to be serious. It’s okay to have stuff just for fun too.
What Do You Get With the P-IX?
The basic P-IX-B comes in either black or tan colors. It consists of a polymer clamshell that locks around your pistol and a polymer charging handle that bolts onto your pistol’s slide. Currently, it’s made for 9mm/.40 pattern Glocks, but I’ll go into fit in a little bit.
The basic shell gives you AR fire controls and a top-mounted Picatinny rail. Included is a Recover Tactical AR pattern Ergonomic Grip, even though the website shows a standard A2 grip in their configurator. The price for the basic kit is $199.95.
If you select the P-IX-MG, you get the P-IX housing, an MG9 angled mag pouch, which acts as an angled fore grip, and a pair of SR20 side rails. If you add the stock selection to either the B or MG kit you’ll get a Recover Tactical TBS COMPACT commercial spec buttstock.
Know your laws before adding the stock. In the U.S., you need to have your pistol registered as a Short Barrel Rifle first in order to use the stock. The cost of the MG kit is $239.95 and adding the stock to either kit adds an additional $35.00.
Assembling the Recover Tactical P-IX Modular AR Platform
When it comes to putting your P-IX together, it’s pretty easy, and you get a set of Ikea-like instructions. It’s mostly pictures that walk you through the assembly process. Recover Tactical’s website also has a short, concise video that shows you how to assemble the kit.
I still have a couple of screws left over, though, that I never figured out what they’re for. Watching the videos online and reading the FAQs are helpful. There are issues covered there that aren’t in the simple instruction sheet.
Next was finding the right donor gun. Basically, it will take any mid-sized or full-sized Glock in 9mm, .40, or .357 SIG. Think Gen 3 and 4 Glock 17 or 19 frames or their equivalents, as well as some Gen 5 variants.
It will actually take licensed airsoft guns, too, which I thought was neat. Recover Tactical basically recommends using a stock gun. Factory sights, trigger, and mag release.
I have a number of Glocks, but most of them are rocking optics or some sort of aftermarket Tritium or Fiber Optic sights. I found out these were a no go for the Recover Tactical charging handle. The charging handle bolts onto your slide with two screws and sits over the rear sight.
The only slide of mine that worked was one aftermarket slide that had factory sights. My Glock 17 frame did have an aftermarket trigger and mag release, but they seemed to work fine.
Once the charging handle is in place, simply release the three clips on the clamshell—on the top, bottom, and front of the mag well. Once these are released, lift up one side of the shell and insert your Glock with the charging handle attached. Close the clamshell, resnap the clips, and you’re ready to go.
Adding the MG Kit
If you have The MG kit, you can then slip on the angled mag carrier and screw on the side rails. You can also add the stock (with the proper paperwork) or a buffer tube and brace. My test kit came with all of the accessories, including the stock. Not having an SBR’d Glock, I swapped out the stock for a brace.
I found that the buffer tube that came with the gun was a civilian diameter tube, which, honestly, I didn’t realize anyone still used. So, I had to swap out to a MilSpec buffer tube and then added a KAK industries brace. I also added a Streamlight TLR-1 to the left side rail and a Bushnell TRS-26 for testing purposes.
Handling the P-IX
Once everything is assembled, you have a pretty slick, compact package. Yes, it’s much bigger than the Glock on its own, but it’s handy for a PCC/Subgun style platform. Ergonomics are very good, with a comfortable grip and familiar AR-type rotating safety lever. The side charging handle is easy to use, as is the left side mounted magazine release, which engages the pistol’s mag release beneath the shell.
Bullpup triggers are always an issue, and the Recover Tactical P-IX is no exception. The trigger pulls straight back with a lot of take-up and play. If you’re old like me, it’s like the plastic toy disk guns from the ’70s. If you aren’t that old, it’s just pretty mushy.
Pull weight isn’t bad, though. However, that will depend somewhat on the pull on the donor pistol itself. I have a decent aftermarket trigger in my gun. If you have a 17 with an NY2 trigger, expect that to translate to a heavy P-IX pull too. With that said, trigger reset is fairly short. While there’s still some take-up, follow-up shots should be greatly improved.
Handling the P-IX around the house is great, but the real test is on the range. I headed out on a sunny summer day with a buddy to give the P-IX a go. We kept things casual because I was primarily interested in handling and function.
For targets, I used a pair of old Belgian steel military helmets placed on the berm at 25 yards. I figured if we could hit helmets steadily, that was good to go for an initial round of testing. Besides, helmets are fun to shoot.
We first sighted in the Bushnell red dot. We had a little bit of trouble initially, and I realized that the Picatinny rail had some play right above the P-IX’s ejection port. I moved the sight a couple of inches back, where the rail seemed more rigid, and we were able to quickly get the sight dialed in. After that, it was easy to roll the helmets around the berm with monotonous regularity, even in rapid fire.
I was interested to see how the trigger would be in live fire, and, interestingly enough, it wasn’t an issue. It’s never going to be a match trigger, but we actually forgot about it once we started shooting. Reset was short, and we were able to make fast follow-up shots and do some mag dumps without feeling adversely affected by the bullpup trigger.
It Was Second Nature
Having spent decades behind M16s and ARs, the controls on the P-IX were second nature. The mag release was different but still positive and easy to use. It could be operated with your support hand thumb if you’re a right-hander or index or middle finger if you’re a lefty.
Reloads were fast since the mags dropped free, and you could access your spare mag right from the mag holder mounted forward of the magazine well.
Overall the session was fun, effective, and uneventful. The P-IX worked well. The only issue I saw was that, in the case of a malfunction, you can’t lock the slide to the rear with the P-IX kit installed. You either need to manually hold the charging handle to the rear or run the mag empty to achieve slide lock. That’s not a deal breaker for me, but it is something to be aware of.
If you have a spare Glock lying around and want to make it into something a little more versatile or fun, then the Recover Tactical P-IX is worth a look. It’s a lot less expensive than investing in a whole new PCC and gives you the option of adding sights, lights, and a brace or stock (with proper paperwork) to your basic pistol.
With Recover Tactical’s lifetime warranty and a 90-day money-back guarantee you really have nothing to lose.
For more information, please visit RecoverTactical.com.
Recover Tactical P-IX Modular AR Platform Features:
- AR Ergonomics
- Uses standard AR accessories
- Compatible with multiple Glock models
- AR Safety selector
- Adjustable trigger
- Multiple Picatinny rails
- Optional collapsible buttstock
- Made with glass-reinforced polymer
- Lifetime Warranty
- 90-Day Money Back Guarantee
- Made in Israel
- MSRP: $199.95 – $274.95