Are Slide Cuts Worth It

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Are slide cuts worth it for a handgun ?

Yes and no. Slide cuts can be beneficial for improving the performance of a handgun, particularly in terms of reducing recoil. However, they may not be worth the investment solely for aesthetic purposes without any practical benefit.

Slide lightening cuts and fancy serration cuts on a pistol slide have their time and place.

Here is when they are worth it and when they are not:

Slide lightening cuts

streamlight tlr 7a on sig p320 axg


  • When building custom handgun shooting low recoil ammo
  • Performance fine tuning for faster slide cycling rate
  • Reduced slide mass for reduced felt recoil


  • Some cuts are very expensive
  • Window lightening cuts expose the slide to dirt and mud that could cause malfunctions

Serration cuts

norsso sig p320 slide with serration cuts


  • Most factory handguns already feature them
  • Serrations with a more aggressive cut can be worth the investment as they provide a better grip on the slide, particularly in situations where the slide may be slippery.
  • Front serrations allows for chamber press check


  • None, totally worth the money

Optic cuts

trijicon rmr profile


  • Mounting a red dot sight on a pistol allows much faster target acquisition for aging eyes
  • Shooter can aim with both eyes open, and focus on the target plane while scanning the surrounding for max situational awareness
  • Direct optic mount ensures the tightest fit 


  • Can be expensive slide upgrade if you end up not liking using with a red dot sight