W ITHOUT A DOUBT, the Glock 19 is one of the most popular handguns for concealed carry and even duty use. And after hearing countless trainers and gun shop owners say “just get a Glock 19” I finally broke down and bought one just to see what all the fuss was about. I’ve never been much of a Glock fan, primarily because I’m repelled by over popularity of any one thing. However after shooting a Taran Tactical Innovations enhanced Glock 34 for several 3 Gun competitions I figured I should give the G19 a run for defensive training.
Breaking my first rule of “Try before you buy” I ordered a G19. It as a Gen 3 model because industry friends told me the trigger tends to be better before and even after modification than the Gen 4 and the Gen 5 had yet to be released. The Glock 19 is a compact version of the full sized 17 in 9mm. The 19 is roughly three quarters of an inch shorter in length and a half inch shorter in height than its full sized brother. Instead of holding 17 rounds it holds 15 rounds with flush fitting magazines. Legendary Glock versatility means the G19 also accepts 17 and even 33 round extended magazines. The G19 isn’t a small gun, yet it bridges the gap between a full sized duty handgun and subcompact concealed carry pistol.
As soon as I got my G19 home I had regrets of not fondling one before I purchased. I don’t have huge Sasquatch hands, but they aren’t small either. My middle finger was downright cramped and uncomfortable between the factory finger grooves and fat trigger guard. I sent it off to Andrew at Patrick’s Gun Shop in Shreveport, LA to get a little TLC. An undercut was given to give my middle finger some relief as well as a traction enhancing stippling job on the frame. Normally custom work like this removes the finger grooves completely but since I was used to them on my G34 I wanted to keep them. After this work I could fit my hands on the pistol, but I feel that if I even don latex gloves I would once again be too cramped. Glock realizes this as well since Gen 5 pistols do not have finger grooves.
After a few magazines worth through the pistol I hate the trigger safety that always protrudes from the trigger and wears a deep aching groove in my trigger finger. Sure this wouldn’t be a problem in a defensive scenario with only a few rounds fired in a high adrenaline situation. However after a half-day and several hundred round training sessions you might have a temporary indention in your finger.
However the beautiful thing about popular firearms like Glock is aftermarket parts are in ample supply. Hundreds of choices in holsters, magazines, triggers, sights, small parts, etc. are readily available at every store and website. One reason I wanted to try the G19 is that the magazines also fits my CMMG Guard rifle and competition G34.
Did I end up loving the G19? Hardly. I still carry my custom M&P, Shield, Walther PPS M2, and stock H&K VP9 long before I settle on the G19. Maybe this will change further down the road if I improve the trigger and purchase a threaded barrel.
We are able to choose from an amazing variety of handguns that are reliable and accurate. Before you settle on the popularly recommended model I would suggest you try several others focusing on what feels best in your hand. Next ensure you can reach all the controls, and finally that you like the trigger. Make sure it’s reliable and accurate, train hard, shoot straight, and stay safe.
Email Dustin Ellermann at [email protected]