Recoil with the PPQ SC is pretty mild for what it is. It's very controllable for its size.I wouldn’t lose any sleep over it. The only function of the guide rod is to keep the return spring from kinking during the rear stroke of the slide. It really has very little pressure against it so being made if plastic is not an issue. The PPQ SC has an encapsulated 2 stage return spring which helps manage recoil, there are not a lot of after market guide rods that have 2 stage springs. If I were going to change anything on the PPQ SC it would be the sights... I already have and it shoots great. I’m going out today to put it up against my shooting partner’s new SIG P365.