Should You Make These Modifications To Your Concealed Carry Pistol?


We all want some basic things in our everyday carry weapon. We want accuracy and dependability. We want it to be small enough to hide but also carry enough rounds. We want it to be a little bit of everything good in a small pistol.

But, even if you buy the “perfect” pistol, you may want to consider modifying a few things. Here are four things suggested by that you may want to consider when you’re ready to modify your weapon:

1. Trigger

The first and most important thing to consider modifying on your gun is the trigger. Most pistol triggers are set for a five- to six-pound pull. That’s okay, but there’s a reason why competitive pistols have light trigger pulls. That’s because a lighter trigger is less likely to cause you to jerk or pull your gun off target.

Not all guns give you the capability of changing out the trigger or of lightening the trigger pull. But if you can, it’s well worth it.

2. Controls

Your two other main controls on any semi-automatic pistol are the slide lock and the magazine lock. Typically, these are designed to be as non-obtrusive as possible so that they don’t hang up when drawing the pistol. But those minimalist designs also may be harder to find and operate when you need to do a quick magazine change.

Extended slide and magazine release controls can speed up your mag changes, shaving as much as a second off your time. That second is critical in competition, but it’s even more critical in the only competition that really counts — when someone is shooting at you.

Speaking of easing magazine changes, adding a flared magazine well also can speed your mag changes. There are several manufacturers who supply these, in both polymer and aluminum. They help eliminate any fumbling that can happen while trying to find the mag well with your magazine.

The only other real control that most pistols have is the safety. Once again, this can be worth changing out to make the gun easier to use.

3. Sights

One of the most customizable areas of any firearm is the sights. The plain iron sights that come on most handguns are fine for short-range shooting in the daylight. The ones with white dots on them are a bit better. But neither will do you much good in a low-light situation. For that, you need something else. Besides, iron sights become harder to use the farther you’re trying to shoot.

While most defensive shooting is done at a range of five yards or less, there is a small percentage that happens at about 50 feet. Shooting with iron sights at that range is difficult at best. Doing so if you don’t have perfect vision is even worse.

4. Tactical light

The last thing you might consider is a tactical light. You’ve probably seen this in movies, where the cops have a tactical light mounted to a short rail under the barrel. Not all guns have this rail, but for those that do, having the light readily available is convenient.

Now, when you are considering upgrades to the internal components, such as the trigger, we recommend using a competent firearms repair shop. This is not something that you want to give you a problem when you are in a dangerous situation.


Also, while you can consider things like laser sights and a tactical light, you will want to be careful using these items because, when they are on, they, in essence, broadcast your location. If you do use them, term them on only briefly and immediately change positions as soon as you turn them off.

What modifications do you recommend? Tell us below.



  1. With my aging eyes, I knew I had to do something with my sights. While my Sig 226 already has a Crimson Trace grip laser, I don’t keep it turned on. It was the first test model and has the pressure switch on the left side of the grips. This causes it to come on while holstered. So, I decided to go with a red dot sight. I settled on a Vortex Viper. The sight is of decent quality, however it shuts off without warning. Not good when I carry for self defense. If I need it I want it to be on. I don’t mind replacing batteries once a month or whatever. I think it’s advertised to last for 1000 hours on low and 100 hours on high. I turn it off at night while home as I have a different bed side weapon. But, for shooting fun it’s great. I have only shot it out to 25 yards and it does very well. I don’t know what kind of batteries the other red dots have. This one uses the 2032 which simply isn’t enough, although very inexpensive.

  2. The thing I hear is that a jury may be alarmed that someone went and modified a factory pistol. Clever lawyers would try to convince them the mods were done to make a gun even more lethal…on purpose. Imagine that. If your peers have no knowledge of firearms they would be inclined to believe that and form an opinion you were itching to battle. No one in a jury would get that a factory S&W Sigma trigger is crap and begs for an upgrade just to make it usable.

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