A local shooter tasked me with kitting up his stock XD(m) into a “RaceGun” for USPSA’s Production Division. When he went and shot it, he couldn’t have been more pleased!
Before: (note: this is another XD(M) I’m working on. It is stock except for the sights)
Here are the parts I used to turn this gun into a Production Division “RaceGun”.
Probably the most important part of any competition gun is the trigger. The stock XD(M) trigger is long, heavy, and has a very long reset. To address this, I installed a Powder River Easy-Fit Trigger Kit. The kit comes with Powder River’s own striker safety lever, trigger, and sear/trigger springs. The kit brought the stock trigger down from a long 5.5 lbs. to a very short 3 lbs. It’s easy to install the kit, and Powder River has some instructional videos on YouTube that really make it easy. The kit does require fitting of the over-travel stop on the trigger, but all you need there is a file or some sandpaper. MSRP is $110.00 for the kit.
The shooter I built the gun for shares my preference for a thin, fiber-optic inserted front sight. Match that with an adjustable rear sight and you’re seeing your sights and shooting faster, and shooting tighter groups.
The sights I use are by Dawson Precision, and they’re the best XD competition sights I’ve found (short of a C-more . A good gunsmith could mill a slide for a Bo-Mar style rear (a’la 1911), but with a Dawson sight there’s no need to. The cost of the rear is $80.00, the front is $40.00.
The rear sight is easy enough to install, you do need to file the new sight base a bit but that’s no big deal. BUT the factory front sight is darn near impossible to get off. I finally gave up trying to hammer it off when I broke my steel punch, and used a pillar file, triangle file, and some verrrry careful dremel work to cut the sight in half. Then I used another steel punch to tap it out. If you want a new front sight on your XD, let a gunsmith deal with it!
The old front sight before I knocked it off with a steel punch.
The factory magazine release is short and stiff. I replaced it with a Canyon Creek Custom extended catch that really speeds up reloads. It’s easy to install, and Powder River has an instructional video on how to install theirs (which is not very different from the Canyon Creek, but was out of stock). Canyon Creek also offers a Tungsten, and an Oversized (really wide button) magazine release, but they’re not legal for USPSA Production. The extended magazine release button costs $35.00
You might have noticed the sandpaper-style grip on the gun. That’s a laser-cut “X-treme Grip”, available through Powder River. It’s pre-cut and it looks really neat, what with the cutouts for the existing grip texture. It also holds really well, but isn’t too abrasive.
Looks slick! (well, not really . The backstrap is also cutout to allow for a lanyard if you use one.
Note that USPSA Production Division rules only allow grip tape in certain areas, so check with the rulebook before you apply your tape.
It’s easy enough to build your own XD(M) competition gun, but unless you’re really good with files and a Dremel, have a gunsmith take care of your front sight. I’m currently working on another XD(M), this one for USPSA “Limited” division, so stay tuned!