Barra 009 Part 001

Barra 009 Part 001

A big surprise from out of left field

By Dennis Adler

More Glock than not, the new Barra 009 blowback action CO2 pistol is based on the Glock 18 design, and like its 9x19mm centerfire counterpart, is a select-fire pistol.

Yes, this is exactly what you think it is, a Glock 18, or rather the blowback action CO2 version of the select-fire 9mm made by Glock for law enforcement and military use, and the assassin in the opening scenes of the James Bond film Skyfall. In terms of modern centerfire handguns, the G18/G18C machine pistols are the Holy Grail of Glocks that you generally cannot own, let alone shoot, unless you’re part of a police SWAT team, member of an elite military unit, or government agency. Even if you are a Class III firearms dealer it’s pretty hard to get a G18/G18C, and you won’t find that many opportunities to shoot one. That is what makes the new Barra 009 (a very subtle reference to MI6 and the 00 section) about as desirable as blowback action CO2 pistols can get; this is simply as close as most of us will ever come to a G18, even though this new select-fire model bears no Glock markings!

The comparisons are self explanatory, the Barra design makes some changes to the G18 design to make the gun different enough, but also better and in one way much better than the original gun’s design. The blowback action model has an improved triggerguard configuration with a deep rear undercut to raise the shooting hand and a second forward undercut to nest the support hand for full auto firing with a two-handed hold. The grip angle is the same but the shape is more like a 1911. Forward slide serrations are also offered by Glock on certain Gen5 models and other select Glock pistols.

The Barra essentials

The G18, not the G18C is the gun that this new CO2 model is based upon; the G18C is the same gun with compensated slots in the barrel and slide to reduce muzzle lift on full auto fire, the same design used on the G17L and G24 compensated models. The centerfire G18’s rate of fire on full auto is 20 rounds per second, which means with the standard 19-round magazine for the G18 you don’t have much time before the slide locks open. The extended 33-round magazine made for the Glock 17 series also works in the G18/G18C models. That’s where we begin.

Glock 18 specs are almost identical to the dimensions of the Barra 009 blowback action CO2 model. The Glock 18 pictured measures (1) 7.32 inches, (2) 7.25 inches, (3) 1.18 inches, (4) 1.12 inches, (5) 5.43 inches including extended 19 round magazine, (6) 6.49 inches (sight radius), and (7) 2.75 inches.

There are a lot of features about the 009 to discuss but most tie back to the Glock 18 which has been in the Glock line since around 1987, though primarily for sale to law enforcement, military and government agencies. The original customer for Gaston Glock’s select fire pistol was Einsatzkommando Cobra the Austrian military’s Counter-Terrorist Unit. The gun’s capability as an easily carried pistol like the Glock 17, made it desirable since it can quickly switch to full auto by lowering the selector on the left side of the slide; it basically looks like a safety decocker seen on many other pistol designs. When lowered, the sear is disengaged and the pistol will continue to fire as long as the trigger is held back. Glock’s innovative, polymer-frame G17 was only introduced globally after 1982, following the gun being adopted by the Austrian military. The Glock was still a relatively new concept when the G18 was introduced, quickly becoming a benchmark new product as a modern day semi-auto/full-auto 9mm pistol.

It is an evolution in both Glock and blowback action designs comparing the first blowback action CO2 model, the Umarex Glock 17(front), the improved Gen4 version (left), and the new Barra 009 (right). The Barra uses most of the Gen4 design.

On Air

It took Glock a very long time to come around to the idea of putting their name on a CO2 pistol, and working in cooperation with Umarex they have introduced (in the U.S.) the non-blowback G19, the blowback action G17 Third Generation, G17 Gen4 variation, and the newer Gen5-based G19X. The real attraction to the Gen4 is that like the centerfire gun, it can be field stripped.

Slide design for the Barra 009 utilizes forward slide serrations, unique triggerguard design, straight grip frame and extended beavertail, otherwise the overall design is Gen4 CO2 model based.

The design and manufacturing of CO2 Glock models is not altogether exclusive to Umarex, only the official Glock name and markings; there have been Glock-like air pistols for awhile and a couple that only had a passing resemblance to a Glock including one with a selective-fire option, the ASP Shark as a CO2 BB pistol, but still nothing that looked as much like or operated like a Glock 18 as this new Barra model. (There is one exception, a Glock licensed Air Soft G18 model with extended capacity magazine).

Real Glock

One of the interesting aspects of most G18/G18C field tests that have been published or shown in videos has been the distance from the target, which is usually 10 yards (7, 10 and 15 yards are used in a traditional tactical test with the full auto Glock). That makes the Barra 009 version of the Glock 18 a viable training gun at both 7 and 10 yard distances. But we’ll get to that in a later article. Today, I am making design comparisons that reveal a lot about what Barra has put into this new Glock-based, blowback action CO2 pistol.

Profile comparison of a 9x19mm Glock Gen5 model shows the use of forward slide serrations. All other Gen5 dimensions match the G18, except for the added width of the select fire switch.

Let’s start with the profile. The general appearance is Glock but with some obvious differences that change how you grip the gun. The curved grip silhouette of the G17 Third Generation and Gen4 models, both with a finger grooved frontstrap, (as copied on the Umarex CO2 models), is changed to a straight grip with horizontal frontstrap grooves and a backstrap that is more akin to a 1911 with the flat mainspring housing; the grip angle, however, remains the same as a Glock 17/18/18C.

As a CO2 model the Glock Gen4 and Barra 009 use the same required manual safety on the dustcover by making the serial number plate into a sliding safety selector. Much the same internally, the Barra magazines and Gen4 magazines are also interchangeable. Barra unfortunately placed the white letter warnings on the right side of the slide rather than hiding them on the underside of the triggerguard or dustcover. But they are fairly subtle.

There are unmistakable elements of the Gen4 in the various components of the 009, such as the larger magazine release used on the Gen4 and later series guns, and the larger slide release. The 009 even has the same dustcover serial number plate used for the requisite manual safety. The Safe Action style triggers are also the same, as is the accessory rail which fits the Glock GTL accessory lights and light/laser combinations.

Slides locked back you can see that the general designs of the Umarex Glock 17 Gen4 and the Barra 009 are the same. The real differences are in the minor exterior changes with the 009 and, of course, the Barra’s G18 style select-fire switch.

The 009 also has a Gen4 slide (longer slide lock channel) and forward slide serrations, something that Glock has recently added as an option on Gen5 and selected Glock models. And, this should come as no surprise; the Umarex Glock Gen4 CO2/BB magazines are interchangeable with the Barra 009!

Again, more Glock than not, the Barra 009 (right) uses the Gen4 (center) white outline rear and white dot front, which are superior to the earlier Third Generation Glock sights (left). The back contour of the Barra beavertail is dished to give it a distinctive look; otherwise the back of the Barra looks like a Glock. All three guns have different grip texturing.

Enough to whet your appetite for today.

In Part 002 we will look at operation and handling of the 009.

4 thoughts on “Barra 009 Part 001

  1. Who dares , wins. This and the Schofield shows Barra is serious. As stated, few will ever see, and fewer will ever own a real Glock 18. While Umarex dithered ,Barra dared. Umarex made a big mistake, not doing this model, as well as a blowback 19. This looks well made and thought out. An extended mag will be a big addition. This is where replica airguns shine. The proof will be in the shooting


    • Indeed, having not yet fired the gun, that is still the unknown. Given that the parts are similar and the firing mechanism (at least in DAO) based on the same design, I would not expect the 009 to be much different than any of the blowback action Umarex Glock models, and very close to the Gen4. To be continued…


  2. Hi Denis
    If you remember my last Glock related post where the G19x did a number on my thumb – the knuckle part. More because of the heavy blow back. I was wondering if this new select fire gun has a nicer beavertail that extends further back and doesn’t interfere as much with the top knuckle part of the thumb like the G19X’s stubby hard cornered beavertail did?
    Does the lower MV give it a less punchy blowback than the G19X?
    Red,


  3. Red

    You have said before you have big hands and a longer beavertail is going to be more thumb friendly. Also keep in mind the deep undercut triggerguard on the 009 which brings your hand up a little higher on the grip. I still remember the first time I got the top of thumb shaved by an old Government Model 1911 slide. Watch your grip Red.

    Dennis


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