The Patmos Arms Judah 19 is the first of three slides I’m reviewing as part of my PSA Dagger Glock 19 clone project. Although the Dagger is available as a complete handgun, I prefer the DIY route. That means buying the complete grip frame, and then topping it with a slide of my choice. The logic is that this gives buyers on a budget a way to build their own, a bit at a time. And JSD Supply makes that easy enough, with a complete slide including all internals and barrel for as little as $199. They’re also a great source for 80% pistol frames, and have been offering quality products with outstanding service since 2013.
Patmos Arms Judah 19 barrel and slide combo
There’s no magic here, just some basic machine work producing a reliable Glock clone. That means a 416 steel, heat treated, nitride finished slide with front and rear serrations that seem to match the OEM pretty well. Inside are all the internals (guide rod and spring, extractor, etc.) along with a match grade stainless 9mm barrel, also with a nitride finish. Topping it off is an inexpensive set of sights, that most users will soon enough replace. So in a sense, it does provide a fair approximation of the Glock experience. Just at a much reduced price. Given the nature of customization to Glock models and their clones, this makes perfect sense.
Even someone new to the Glock pattern pistols should have no trouble installing the slide. Installation isn’t so much of a thing as doing a full function test. Make sure the slide travels smoothly, and the trigger works as well as resets. There’s no safety to check, other than the one on the trigger of the Dagger. Just be sure to make sure it’s unloaded before those trigger and safety checks.
A little range time
Once the slide was installed, it was a matter of packing ammo and targets into the range bag, and heading out. I’ve pretty much given up shooting groups on paper. Even my “competition” pistols are used for steel targets, rather than paper. Reactive targets provide gratifying feedback that’s more easily related to real-world shooting. So I set up some centerfire-rated steel spinners. They have a 2″ plate on top, and 4″ on the bottom. Depending on what I am shooting, I’ll set them up at seven yards and then somewhere between ten and 25 yards. This is a good time to mention that I somehow failed to take any photos of it on my range trip, and it was snowing when I wrapped up this article. So no outdoor photos.
While the trigger on the Dagger is nothing to write home about, it does the job. And the Patmos Arms Judah 19 is more than up to the task of basic target shooting. At seven yards, the 4″ plate is going to ring with each trigger pull. If the goal is a defensive pistol for about $300, then that goal has been achieved. If this is just the base for a more accurate build, then it’s certainly a good enough starting point. To be fair, I didn’t have time to run hundreds of rounds through it, but it fed my cheap ammo from both OEM Glock magazines and Magpul magazines. I did my research beforehand, and the Judah 19 has a reputation for reliability, which is comforting at this price point.
Thoughts on the PSA Dagger – Patmos Arms Judah 19 combination
The Dagger frame and Patmos Arms Judah 19 complete slide together are about 1/2 the cost of an actual G19. That leaves plenty of room for an eventual trigger upgrade, improved sights, and probably a few boxes or more of range ammo. So where I see both products having appeal is with anyone that likes the idea of building from scratch, but not enough to start with an 80% pistol frame. PSA is selling their complete Dagger frame for a little less than what a nice aftermarket trigger alone costs. Hard to argue with that. JSD Supply offers a “drop-in” fully finished slide for as little as $200.
There are factory EDC options out there for the same budget, but most are not any better. Nor do they have the vast aftermarket support available. So while it’s possible to buy a complete PSA Dagger, or put together a combo like this, I think many will view this as a starting point. Whether it’s DIY stippling, upgrading the trigger, or a later barrel upgrade and maybe custom Cerakote, I’m certain these will end up seeing more done to them. And I support that. Not every pistol is a defensive weapon. There are literally millions upon millions of rounds fired for sport and recreation every year for each single round fired in defense. And for many, the build is half the fun. PSA and JSD Supply are here for those enthusiasts. Check out the PSA Dagger options here, and JSD Supply here.
I’d like to thank JSD Supply for providing their Judah 19 for testing and evaluation. As mentioned, I did a little research first, and they have a reputation for value. That doesn’t mean “cheap”. They’re one of those brands that manage to earn your money without taking a lot of it. Sure, you can go wild on a clone build. But if you just want a pistol that goes bang every time, they’ve got that covered too.