In this episode, Craig takes us behind the barrel of the Glock. Glock 42, 43, 19 and more! It’s 65% of the world sales for pistols to law enforcement! What is your favorite pistol?
The Glock pistol, sometimes referred to by the manufacturer as a Glock “Safe Action” Pistol or colloquially as a Glock, is a series of polymer-framed, short recoil-operated, locked-breech semi-automatic pistols designed and produced by Glock Ges.m.b.H., located in Deutsch-Wagram, Austria. It entered Austrian military and police service by 1982 after it was the top performer on an exhaustive series of reliability and safety tests.
Despite initial resistance from the market to accept a “plastic gun” due to durability and reliability concerns, and fears, (subsequently shown to be unfounded), that the pistol would be “invisible” to metal detectors in airports, Glock pistols have become the company’s most profitable line of products, commanding 65% of the market share of handguns for United States law enforcement agencies, as well as supplying numerous national armed forces, security agencies, and police forces in at least 48 countries. Glocks are also popular firearms among civilians for recreational/competition shooting, home/self defense, and concealed or open carry.
Following the introduction of the Glock 17, numerous variants and versions have been offered. Variants that differ in caliber, frame, and slide length are identified by different model numbers with the exception of the Glock 17L. Other changes not dealing with frame and slide length are identified with suffixes, such as “C”, which denotes compensated models. Minor options such as frame color, sights, and included accessories are identified by a separate model code on the box and do not appear anywhere on the firearm.
Glock pistols are made in five form factors, all modeled after the original full-sized Glock 17. “Standard” models are designed as full-sized duty firearms with a large magazine capacity. “Compact” models are slightly smaller with reduced magazine capacity and lighter weight, while maintaining a usable grip length. “Subcompact” models are designed for easier carry, and being lighter and shorter, are intended to be used with two fingers on the grip below the trigger guard, and lack an accessory rail like the larger, after generation two, Glock models. The .45 ACP and 10mm Auto models have bigger, wider slides and are slightly larger than the smaller-chambered pistols and are available in the subcompact models Glock 29 (10mm) and Glock 30 (.45 ACP). Glock produces a single-stack “Slimline” .45 ACP pistol, the Glock 36. “Competition” versions have longer barrels and slides, adjustable sights, an extended slide and magazine release.
Beginning in 2007, Glock introduced several “Short Frame” models designated by the suffix “SF”. The short frame was originally designed to compete in the now cancelled U.S. military Joint Combat Pistol trials for a new .45 ACP pistol to replace the M9 pistol. Glock’s entry featured an optional ambidextrous magazine release and MIL-STD-1913 rail along with a reduction in the size of the backstrap. The Glock 21SF is currently available in three versions: one with a Picatinny rail and ambidextrous magazine release and two with a Universal Glock rail available with or without the ambidextrous magazine release. Current 10 mm and .45 ACP Glock magazines are manufactured with ambidextrous magazine release cutouts. As of January 2009, the Glock 20, 21, 29, and 30 were offered in short-framed variations. These models incorporate a 2.5 mm (0.098 in) reduction in trigger reach, and full-sized models feature a 4 mm (0.16 in) reduction in heel depth, which corresponds to an overall reduction in length for those models.