Gun Review: Glock 19 Gen4 9X19mm

When Gaston Glock introduced his Austrian duty pistol into the U.S. market, American gun-buying habits were transformed. Despite (or because of) the furore surrounding Glock’s “plastic” pistol—supposedly invisible to airport metal detectors—consumers and police departments were fascinated by the “wonder nine.” When they shot a Glock the resulting revelation spurred sales to unimaginable heights. The original G17 was lighter than all-metal pistols of comparable size, held more ammo and proved to be as trusty as a canine companion. As Gen4 enters circulation, the question looms: has time been kind to the Black Labrador of pistols?

Glock introduced the Gen4 Glock 19 in the middle of 2010. As befits the gunmaker’s evolutionary approach, the move from G19 3.0 to 4.0 was about as radical as a member of the John Birch Society. I received my Gen4 G19 in the usual black lunch box emblazoned with an XXL Glock logo. As someone who believes discretion is the better part of avoiding a Terry Stop, I would have preferred something more subtle. That locks.

Kudos to Glock for packaging the G19 with three fifteen-round magazines (accounting for part of the $50 up-charge from Gen3). In states that have enacted profoundly ignorant “anti-spree killer” high-capacity magazine laws, a buyer receives two emasculated ten-rounders. In Massachusetts, where new Glocks can’t lawfully be sold by any MA dealers to any MA consumers, buyers will receive nothing but the box, empty.

The kit includes the minimalist Glock speedloader, cleaning tools and a manual in 47 languages (including Sanskrit). There’s also a gun safety booklet tucked into the box, in case a buyer thinks The Four Rules of Gun Safety are a Tolkein thing.

I always found Glock pistols to be unnecessarily ugly, and as ungainly looking as broom-handled Mausers. Certainly, I’m aware that they’re fighting guns and not objets d’art, but still, there’s no reason for Glocks to look like they were designed by the local plumbing contractor.

The G19 Gen4 is not a bad-looking gun. I know. Crazy, huh? Those who like the “all handle, no slide” look of the G17 need only to add a palm swell to restore the iconic ugly look. With no palm-swell installed, the G19 is a well-proportioned piece. The sandpaper finish adds a touch of je ne sais quoi (that’s French for WTF), and the gun looks put-together, not thrown together. I’d still be embarrassed to display this pistol next to a Kimber Solo Carry STS, but the G19 has come a long way, baby.

The Gen4 design sports the same the finger-grooved handle of the Gen3. Owners who thought that the grooves were groovy on the Gen3 will find them no more or less groovy on the Gen4, since they’re the same groovy grooves. Those, like me, who hated the grooves will continue to hate them with great passion and conviction.

To improve the G19′s grip-ability in moist conditions, the semi’s handle now sports a highly textured finish, bringing all of us one step closer to the elusive goal of shower carry. Since all things Glockian must have a snappy name or a number, Glock’s hard-charging marketing mavens call it their “Rough Texture Frame (RTF)” technology. Not to rain on other guns’ parades, but RTF is GTG (Good to Go); it makes an appreciable difference in humid or precipitous precipitate situations.

The obvious big deal here: Glock’s Smith & Wesson M&P and Springfield XD-chasing “Modular Back Strap System.” As it sits in the box, the G19′s handle is more slender than the Gen3, decreasing the distance-to trigger by .08”. The pistol can be used as it comes; the handle is completely finished with the aforesaid RTF.

Should the G19′s handle prove too small, the owner can add either a medium or a large palm-swell. The medium attachment adds .08” to the present handle, bringing it back to Gen3 dimensions. The large back strap adds an additional .08” to the handle, making it suitable for the hands of a mountain gorilla.

I experimented with the palm-swells to determine my best setup. By way of comparison, I shoot my S&W M&P 40c with the medium back strap installed, so I first tried the G19 with no back strap. Hooray and hallelujah, the handle geometry was as comfortable as a cashmere sweater on a chilly day. Finally, I had found a Glock that didn’t feel like a block. That’s the good part. The bad part was that the trigger now seemed too close.

I installed the medium back strap to lengthen the distance twixt palm and trigger. This resulted in a trigger length that was perfect, but made the stock too thick for my hands. Just for giggles, I tried the large back strap. It made the gun very clumsy and brought back unfond memories of the Desert Eagle that I recently tested. I settled on no back strap as the best compromise for me.

Changing backstraps is easy, but, like any gun club you care to mention, not tool-free. Glock provides a small and a large pin to hold the selected back strap in place, and a little T-shaped punch tool to push the pin in or out of its hidey-hole. The process starts with knocking out the small pin, which is already installed in the pistol.

Thumb pressure it all that’s required to push out the pin. The owner mat then snap an extra back strap into position. Push the correct-sized pin into the hole to hold the whole shooting match together, and that’s that. Installing the medium or large back strap with the proper pin takes just a minute and presto chango, the pistol is re-sized.

The hexagonal rifling of the G19s barrel carries on Glock’s tradition of polygonal rifling—as opposed to conventional lands and grooves—across its pistol line. Glock claims its rifling creates a tighter seal of bullet to barrel and reduced barrel fouling. While the data remains in-house, gunmakers have been using polygonal rifling since the 16th century. So we’ll call it good.

The Glock 19′s new dual recoil springs have been the G4′s headline attraction—and not in a good way.

According to Glock, the new dual-nested springs were included to soften recoil and lengthen the spring’s lifespan. Similar springs have been used in handguns for a long time. Yes but—how do you improve on perfection? More to the point, Glocks have been good, reliable and strong firearms, springs included. Why fix what ain’t broke?

Reduced recoil? 9mm Glocks have never recoiled harshly. Perhaps they were flippier than some and less flippy than others, but nobody thinks of flippiness or harsh recoil as Glock characteristics. Increased lifespan? That didn’t work out so well. The new springs—called the “Recoil Spring Assembly (RSA)” in Glock spiel—was troublesome. At best. Owners reported Failure to Feed (FTF) and Failure to Eject (FTE) problems as soon as the first Gen4 G17s hit the market.

Users cured these FTF and FTE problems by installing a set of Gen3 springs with a little adapter. Glock moved quickly to head off a PR nightmare and offered replacement RSAs to its customers. In Glock-speak, this was called an “upgrade,” not a recall.

The replacements seem to be doing their job. Today’s buyers may plunk down their hard-earned cash without fear that their springs will fall by summer, leaving them with a winter of discontent. Moreover, the middle-school rumor mill that we call “the gun culture” is all quiet on the Glock front, reaffirming that the new springs are working as they should across the Glock pistol line.

Glock polymer sights, with their single dot front and funky, squared-off U insert in the rear, have never been a favorite of mine. The sights on my G19 tester were worse than I remembered. Not enough light passes along the sides of the front sight, so shooting with “equal light” is difficult. The problem isn’t that the front blade is too wide, it’s that the 6” sight radius is too short. Were the sight radius longer, the front blade would block less of the rear and all would be fine with the world. Alas, the sight radius won’t change, but the problem can be rectified by installing better sights.

The G19 weighs under 21 ounces and seems even lighter. While the gun does seem a tad top-heavy, it still balances like a ballerina and points well, too. The gun’s geometry remains unchanged from Gen1, so Glock fans will be comfortable with the Gen4. Down to business . . .

I first loaded five rounds of crappy range ammo into a 15 round mag. I used a traditional 6 o’clock hold to get a good feel for the pistol’s true point of impact. At five yards, I was an inch and a half low-left. I noticed that I was depressing the trigger with my fingertip, not the pad. I never shoot with my fingertip, but with the small backstrap on the gun, my fingertip just went to the trigger automatically. I had to really concentrate on using the pad of my trigger finger with this pistol.

My next two shots, using the pad, rectified the low part of my marksmanship and hit in the same hole. After tiny adjustment of my sight picture, I was on target with two in the red.

The trigger was a revelation. I found it just a little bit mushy, but very light for one that’s rated at 5.5 lbs. The reset was not as “clicky” or crisp as other Glock’s that I’ve shot, but all things considered, it’s a damn good trigger. After running through several boxes with two hands and gaining tremendous confidence in the pistol, I decided to try one-handed shooting.

I was surprised that my first shot was a flyer, but then I realized that I had used my fingertip yet again. Making the proper adjustment, I then rapidly drained four into a group the size of a quarter.

I admit that math was never my best subject, but I quickly calculated that if five rounds of 9mm was fun, loading up 15 rounds of rock and roll might be three times the fun. Unfortunately, loading the 15-round “assault clips” was a problem. Without using a mallet, I couldn’t fill the mags with more than 14 rounds.

That’s not an unusual problem. I have several magazines that function perfectly except they can’t be filled to their advertised capacity. I did another quick calculation and figured that 14 rounds of whoop-ass was 2.8 times the fun of 5, so I was content. I stayed content until I fired the first round. After the shot, the slide locked open and the pistol refused to feed. I racked the slide and the round chambered properly. I fired and, once again, the slide locked open and the next round wouldn’t feed.

I dropped the mag and struck it against my palm, reseated it and chambered a round. The rest of those 9 mills went down range properly. I figured that the mag just needed a little smack to set the cartridges, so I reloaded it with another fourteen, smacked it and went to work. Guess what? After the first shot, there was no joy in Glocksville. No matter what I did, neither the 13th nor the 12th rounds would chamber on its own.

I went back to shooting trouble-free five-round groups until I ran out of targets. At the end, I used the backing from a Shoot-N-C with one of the red plasters stuck into the center in lieu of a real target. I put six rounds into that little dot and damn quickly at that. I then amused myself by effortlessly punching four red and black plasters at the corners of the backing. Shooting dime-sized groups at five yards was a breeze.

Two weeks later, I walked over to my local range with a whole lot of ammo and targets, and proceeded to drill the crap out of the latter with the former. This time, I used a borrowed 10-round magazine since 15-round “assault clips” are illegal in Massachusetts. I had absolutely zero feeding problems and a whole lot of fun, with the G19 showing great accuracy at distances to 15 yards. With the graveyard lighting of the indoor range, offhand 25-yard shooting was difficult, but I was still able to keep everything on paper.

I’d like to be able to tear down the 15-round mags and try to figure out why they didn’t work right, but alas, that would make me a criminal in Massachusetts. While I do feel a certain obligation to produce a factual and complete gun test for y’all, I believe my obligation ends where a year in the Graybar Hotel begins.

The negatives concerning this pistol were annoying, but few in number. I still don’t like the sights very much, and the handle geometry is still a bit of a problem for me. The worst feature of the pistol is the finger grooves carried over from the Gen3′s. My fingers always ended up on the high points of the grooves instead of between them. It wasn’t exactly torture, but it wasn’t comfy and cushy either.

The positives of the G19 Gen4 overwhelmed the negatives. The pistol is a bit longer and taller than, say, an M&P compact, but the G19 remains concealable. It’s very accurate, the trigger is very good. With functional magazines, the pistol performs flawlessly.

Anyone considering the purchase of a compact 9mm without test-driving the G19 Gen4 is either foolish or lives in Massachusetts. It’s about as far from “Perfection” as Austria is from Peoria, but the Glock 19 Gen4 is still a very good pistol in a moderately sized package, and for not a lot of cash. This dog will hunt. Still.

More from Glock click here

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: Glock 19 Gen4
Caliber: 9mm
Magazine capacity: 15 or 10 rounds
Materials: Reinforced polymer frame, steel barrel and slide
Weight empty: 20.99 ounces
Barrel Length: 4.02″
Overall length: 7.28″
Sights: Polymer, windage adjustable
Action: Striker fired, “Safe Action”
Finish: Parkerized Tennifer with RTF
Price: Around $500 “street price”

RATINGS (out of five stars)

Style * * * *
The proportions finally look right. As a fighting gun, it looks balanced and purposeful. The rough texture is a nice styling touch and makes the gun look very butch.

Ergonomics (carry) * * * * 1/2
The G19 in about ½” larger fore-and-aft than the “Baby Glock,” and perhaps 1/4” longer and taller than an M&P compact. The extra size is a reasonable tradeoff for the all-finger grip. The gun is nicely concealable and, at 21 oz., it won’t pants anyone.

Ergonomics (firing) * * * 1/2
The damn handle still didn’t fit me the way I wanted it too. I had to choose a backstrap that made the stock too stocky or one that made the trigger was too close. I despised the finger grooves which were very awkward and uncomfortable. Still, the handle is a major improvement over the older models and none of these perceived deficiencies seemed to have a profound effect on accuracy.

Reliability * * * *
I could never top off the 15-round mags. Even with only 14 rounds in the magazines, I suffered several failures to feed. Maybe the mags will break in over time, and maybe they won’t. Maybe they needed cleaning, and maybe they didn’t. Shooting with less than the full complement of cartridges, or with a 10-round mag topped off, I had zero issues.

Customize This * * * * *
It has a rail for Glock lights and lasers, and the sights can be changed. There is a huge aftermarket for Glock add-ons of every kind and description, but really, why bother?

OVERALL RATING * * * *
I’m still not a Glock fanboy, but you might become one if you try this gun.

116 Responses to Gun Review: Glock 19 Gen4 9X19mm

  1. avatarOldLawman says:

    New standard capacity Glock mags are notorious for not wanting to be loaded all the way. If you let them sit around loaded as far as you can go for a week or so (YMMV), and then function-test a few times, it should become easier.

    Just a tip from someone who has owned/carried Glocks for over 20 years.

    • avatarracer88 says:

      I’m a Glock guy for 20 years, too. I’ve got a decent collection of magazines. I’ve NEVER had these issues. I can top them off. And, they work as reliably as Glocks are reputed to be… right out of the box. I’ve never had to do ANYthing to any of them.

    • avatarFred Duncan says:

      OK, I just saw the Gen 4 Glock 19 on Gallery of Guns and wanted to know how it stacked up. I have three all three Glocks, 22,23,& 26 in .40 S&W and I noticed some difficulty getting my high cap mags in and out of the mag well due to swelling. Like in the review I too had problems loading to the full but I just forced the last round or two in by pushing on the table.
      Guys, I also have two Kimbers in .45 ACP. A standard and an Ultra Carry. I keep my Glocks for rough stuff and carry the Kimber around civilization.

  2. avatarDavid says:

    I was just looking at some info on the A-10 Warthog last night and one of their mottos is apropo for the Glock. Go Ugly Early. If you need a gun you can’t do better than a Glock. And beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The older I get the more I appreciate things that work and don’t break.

    • avatarDirk Diggler says:

      I bought the glock b/c it is reliable and won’t fail me in a fight. As for being ugly, do I realy want something I will be worried about dropping and scratching or do I want something that I wouldn’t think twick about if it got nicked up a bit? Concealed carry is not a safe queen

      • avatarTT says:

        I am with you Dirk; I just bought G19Gen4, had to order it, and it turns out to have been a good thing. In the interim, Glock must have made some improvments to some of the problematic design that effect the potential for FTF or Spitting Brass. I only have 100 rounds of my home grown 124 grain Golden Sabre rounds thru the gun, but with no failures or spitting brass or fail to feed or any other failure, I am totally satisfied that I have a shooter that will run anytime called upon. The reason I bought the Glock was because of the extraordinary reports of increadible reliablility. Although G19 is not my favorite, I am happy with the purchase. Still though the pistol that covers my back is a dinged scratch and pocket rashed 9mm Walther PPS that I like because it has never FTF. Good Shooting TT

  3. avatarry_ry says:

    “…winter of discontent.” I see what you did there.

    As for this pistol, I think I’ll stick with my G3 19. I am starting to think that Glock only f’ed up perfection with this generation in an effort to raise prices ($550 vs $500 for a G3). For the extra $50 you get what? A customizable grip and decreased reliability? No wonder they spend a lot on their marketing/PR team.

    • avatarMauser says:

      Gen4 Glocks are supposed to ship with 3 magazines vs. 2 magazines with the Gen3. There’s half of the $50 price difference.

      • avatarRobert Farago says:

        Nice save. Text amended.

        • avatarDonWorsham says:

          I thought only LE Glocks came with 3 mags. Civilians get 2. Has this changed with Gen4? Gen3 goes for $499 w/2 mags and Gen4 for $549 w/2 mags in central Ohio.

        • avatarRopingdown says:

          Yes, it’s changed. My Gen4 G21 came with 3.

        • avatarTT says:

          I paid $559 for my G19Gen4 and it came with 3 magazines, and a simple speedloader. I looked at several in NC before buying, and that’s how the G4 comes to us common folk. TT

      • avatarry_ry says:

        I stand corrected.

        Are these Gen 4′s really going for ~$500 street? On slickguns.com, the lowest I have seen listed are $549.

      • avatarDirk Diggler says:

        you can also switch the mag release to go lefty and the mag release is larger and easier to operate. This is the main reason I waited on my G26 and could not be happier.

  4. avatarRightYouAreKen says:

    A few comments from an early 19 Gen4 adopter. I bought mine in August 2010. I probably have 7,000 rounds through it at this point.

    Mine came with three 15 round magazines, not two. I think three is the normal number included now from what I gather on the forums. A nice touch for those wanting to get right into IDPA, where there is a 2 mags on your belt (and one in the gun) limit.

    Out of the box, the gun wouldn’t eject reliably with soft ammo such as the Walmart Federal $10/box stuff. I ended up going with hotter stuff purchased online, such as American Eagle 124gr, Winchester Ranger NATO 124gr, Lawman 124gr, Sellier and Bellot 115gr, etc. With these, the gun ran great.

    Late in 2011 I received the new recoil spring. I haven’t tested it again with weaker ammo, and didn’t really notice any difference when racking the gun, but some say it’s noticeably softer.

    At some point I started getting more and more cases ejected straight into my face. There is now a “silent upgrade” going on with the ejectors. I had my ejector replaced with a new model by a Glock armorer which seems to have fixed this issue.

    So, if you have a Gen4 G19, make sure you have the latest recoil spring and ejector, and it should be good to go.

    As a side note, there are concerns swirling around that current production Gen3 guns are also having erratic ejection problems, with some online pointing to ejector or extractor changes that might be causing problems. My recent production Gen3 34 hasn’t had any issues.

    • avatarRalph says:

      the gun wouldn’t eject reliably with soft ammo such as the Walmart Federal $10/box stuff

      I had no FTEs at all, and I used the most craptastic ammo I could find. I did have failures to feed, which are completely attributable to the magazines being topped off.

      At some point I started getting more and more cases ejected straight into my face.

      The rumor mill is repleat with anecdotes about such ejection problems. I didn’t mention ejection issues in the article because I didn’t have any, and because I didn’t have any solid proof that there were such problems.

    • avatarLocoMoto says:

      I have the Gen4 17, 19 and 26. The 26 with the new ejector has been flawless. With the 19 (old ejector) I get occasional weak ejection or brass to the face but not enough to cause me any concern. The 17 (old ejector) has been trouble from the get-go. With around 1200 rounds through it I am averaging 1 FTE per 100 rounds and brass to the face around 20% of the time. The opinion of the Glock armorer at the shop/range I frequent is that the problem is slightly off-spec extractors for which the new ejector is a band-aid. I have one on the way which hopefully will resolve the issue without sending the gun to the factory.

  5. avatarJason says:

    That does not look polygonal. In fact, that looks extremely land-and-groovy.

    • avatarbontai Joe says:

      I noticed that also. Nothing at all like the polygonal rifling used in a HK for example.

      • avatarJoe Grine says:

        Even my old 1992-era (is that Gen 2?) Glock has rifling that looks different that what is shown above.

        • avatarRalph says:

          The white streaks in the picture are just reflections off the bore light, not grooves. It’s Glock’s traditional polygonal rifling.

  6. avatarScuba Steve says:

    I own a Glock Gen 4 G19, and have had zero issues with it, both before and after I got the new spring from Glock. After getting the new spring, I ran about 220 rounds through it – no issues whatsoever. I have seen the extractor issues, and folks on the Glock Forums with issues claim that the gun is throwing brass back in their faces. Out of all the rounds I fired in any of my range sessions, I had exactly one round come back and hit me in the forehead.

    It is very important to use a patch like a piece of dental floss and really get that extractor clean. After several hundred rounds, the gunk will build up and if you don’t floss your extractor – like your teeth, it will just keep getting gunk in there and I can see how brass will get thrown back. The gunk may change how the extractor grabs the shell casing and flings it back instead of up and out. Just a guess on my part.

    To break in new magazines, I load them and keep them loaded for at least two days before I go to the range. I have had zero issues with my 3 G19 mags.

  7. avatarbontai Joe says:

    This was a good review. I am the proud owner of an early Gen 1 Glock 17, and interestingly, I’ve added a finger grooved rubber sleave over the grip. One, because I like the finger grooves and more importantly, I found the smooth grip of the early models to be slippery in my gorrilla sized mitts, but that is just my preference, very few folks have hands (and fingers) as large as mine. My mags always work ok with a full load in them, but they are darn near 25 years old, Who knows what dimensional changes or quality control changes have happened over that time span? And your description of the mag loader as “minimalist” sounds like it is unchanged from mine, and spot on in description. And I think the sights on this new one are MUCH better than what was std. 25 years ago.

  8. avatarJack Straw says:

    Boy oh boy. That there Ralph sure ’nuff has a cute ‘n clever writin’ style.

    Reminds me of Maureen Dowd when she’s happy.

  9. avatartetsujin79 says:

    We just took the wife’s brand new, fresh from box 19 to the range yesterday. First round on all 3 mags loaded to 15 FTF on the first rack of the slide. Good practice and nothing more then a mag drop to bring the gun into battery.

    Her: “That’s supposed to make me feel confident?”

    Me: “They’re mint mags. It took you 5 minutes to get the last three rounds into all the mags when you were loading them. We’ll load them up and let them sit at home.”

    As for accuracy, once that first mag got put back in, her first three shots clover leafed. Very nice.

  10. avatarRopingdown says:

    The new texture on my Gen4 G21 elicits only this complaint, that when I switch to my Gen 3 G20 it feels as though it’s going to slip out of my hand. It doesn’t slip. It just inspires the thought when I first grasp it. I love the new texture. As Ralph implies, should they remake Hitchcock’s Psycho, a modern CCW-S Marion will be able to shoot from the shower with confidence.

    • avatarRalph says:

      I’ve heard that the Gen3 finish abrades holsters, pockets and everything else that it might rub against. True or false? I’ve also been told that the new finish, while grabbier, is less abrasive. I guess time will tell about that.

      • avatarRopingdown says:

        I think that is true: The Gen 3 finish is harder and the molding seems to be a bit sharper. An adequately firm hold when loaded with SAAMI max 10 mm proves very uncomfortable to the hand. Early on I consigned it to Kydex. The Gen4 G21 feels much better and, viewed under a jeweler’s loupe, looks less sharp. If they bring out a Gen4 G20 I’ll trade mine in the next day. Incidentally the Gen3 G20 SF and the Gen4 G21 (without added palm swell) have identical dimensions for practical purposes (grip, holster).

        • avatarRopingdown says:

          Something peculiar, I should add: I don’t notice the abrasiveness at all with my G36. I have to assume it is the single-stack perfect-for-my-hand grip. I also shoot the G36 better than the other G’s. It is only with the 10mm that I really notice it. Still, the Gen4 grip finish is much more pleasant.

  11. avatarokto says:

    “I’d still be embarrassed to display this pistol next to a Kimber Solo Carry STS”
    Would you still be embarrassed when the Kimber failed to digest one mag without choking? A carry gun doesn’t need to be pretty, it needs to be 100.00% reliable.

    The Glock’s form is dictated entirely by its function. It’s minimal. It’s meant to be the firearm equivalent of a hammer. A hammer isn’t beautiful, either, but it also goes bang every time you swing it. :P

    • avatarRalph says:

      Would you still be embarrassed when the Kimber failed to digest one mag without choking?

      Check my recent review of the Kimber Solo Carry. It performed flawlessly.

      • avatarDex says:

        yeah but will it perform reliably after prolonged firing, subpar maintenance, and a myriad of different ammunition types?

        Comparing a glock to any kimber is a joke.

  12. avatarVan says:

    Here is how I would address the aesthetics issue with Glocks: “In case you didn’t know, some people find Glocks ugly, and others don’t. Moving on now…”

    • avatarRalph says:

      I call them the way I see them. There are other sites where every gun is beautiful and a joy to shoot.

  13. avatarWalt says:

    When one considers the initial cost, customizing capabilities, (not that they need much, if anything done to them), accuracy, durability and overall badass physical appearance I can’t imagine why one would not own at least one of these little beauties.

    I’m keeping my Gen 3 #19 and buying the Gen 4 as well. In fact, I can’t see myself every getting rid of any of my Glocks. Lastly, these “ugly” little bad boys are so easy to field strip and maintain that I consider it a Zen moment when I’m doing periodic maintenance instead aggravation. Call me crazy, I’ve been called much worse…….

  14. avatarLevi B says:

    Are you saying my local plumbing contractor did a poor job as an interior decorator at my home?

  15. avatarJohn Fritz says:

    “Without using a mallet, I couldn’t fill the mags with more than 14 rounds.

    Heh. You got “Para’d”. 14.45 my butt.

    • avatarRalph says:

      Haaaaaaaa.

      Really, though, it’s not uncommon. I have an M&P 9mm mag that took a year to break in. It never malfunctioned, but it just wouldn’t take the full load.

  16. avatarpercynjpn says:

    I’m originally from a suburb of Springfield; I didn’t know Glocks were banned in MA. Why is that?

    Ralph, I think you write the most thorough yet to-the-point reviews on this site, so don’t worry too much if you resemble an hysterical female leftist!

    By the by, why is there a photo of a Glock sitting in the bathroom sink?

    Todd

    • avatarRalph says:

      Thank you for the compliment. BTW, I have little in common with Maureen Dowd. She may be cranky twelve times a year, but I’m cranky twelve times a day.

      Glocks can’t be sold in MA to consumers because Glock won’t put up with the bogus “safety” regulations enacted by the AG (without legislative approval) in 1998. Last I heard, Glock and the AG’s office were arguing over the Glock’s loaded chamber indicator. Glock has basically told the Commonweath to f-off, and I don’t blame them. As far as I’m concerned, Glock is blameless.

      Old Glocks, in the Commonwealth prior to 1998 when the regs were enacted, can and are sold through MA FFLs.

      As for the Glock-in-the-porcelain pic, Robert took that one, so I have no idea — but knowing Robert as well as I do, I’m sure there was a deep, metaphysical meaning. Maybe something about the duality of human nature. Or maybe he just liked the dark and light contrast.

      • avatarpercynjpn says:

        “I’m sure there was a deep, metaphysical meaning. Maybe something about the duality of human nature. Or maybe he just liked the dark and light contrast.”

        Now I see; I could understand the one in the freezer, as we all know at least 43% of semi-auto owners prefer their cartridges chilled, since that usually increases muzzle velocity by at least 15% on average, but leaving it in the sink is just plain crazy!

  17. avatarAhab says:

    I drank t.he Kimber koolaid and would never own another Block again. The trigger sucks,and is ugly like a cross eyed pig. Failures are unheard of and I have shot 3000+ rounds through her.

  18. avatarDuke says:

    I can’t believe you gave this gun a 4 out of 5 for reliability. The magazine is designed to hold 15. You could only put 14 in the mag. Then the gun malfunctioned every 13th and 12th round that you were able to load. Yea, it sounds like a magazine problem. But 1) it doesn’t matter why a a gun doesn’t work if it doesn’t work when you need it to; you’re totally f’d whether it’s due to a poorly designed gun or a poorly designed magazine and 2) the malfunctions may very well go away after you leave the magazines loaded for a few days but instead of doing that and reporting the results you just give Glock a pass because it’s Glock and everyone knows that no gun has ever been as reliable as a Glock. I appreciate that you and the writers on this site seem to give very honest reviews of guns and other gear but in this case I must say, the evidence does not support the verdict.

    • avatarRalph says:

      I took off 20% for the stoppages. Without the stoppages, the reliability rating would have been 5 stars. No snark intended, what rating would you assign? Keep in mind that with the ten-round mag, and with the normal mags with less than a full load, issues were zero.

      • avatarDuke says:

        IMHO the ultimate purpose of a Glock 19 – like many other similar polymer striker fired handguns – is self-defense. Two stoppages in every single magazine is simply unacceptable in a gun designed for such a serious purpose. As for it working with the 10-rounders – I believe that 9mm is totally sufficient for SD (I carry it myself) but I feel that 9mm’s biggest advantage is capacity. If you can only carry 10 then why not carry a .40 or .45 in the same size gun? As I said, that’s just my opinion. I really do enjoy reading the reviews on this site. Keep them coming. Oh.. and I would love to rate the 4th gen G19 but I haven’t shot one. Any chance you guys would mail me that one?

        • avatarRalph says:

          Your comment is certainly valid, but based upon the stoppages that I had, what reliability rating would you assign?

        • avatarDuke says:

          When I see 4 out of 5 stars it makes me think “oh a B, that’s pretty good.” However, I do not consider regular stoppages pretty good. I suppose I see reliability as more pass/fail, with this glock failing. That said, it did clearly seem to be a mag problem and one that might completely go away after a short break-in. If the mags started feeding 100% after sitting loaded for a few days I’d give it 5 for reliability but as of right now, I don’t know, maybe 2 stars. Sure it gets 5 reliability stars with the low cap mags but as I said before, for CCW (which is the reason I’m interested in the G19) if I only have ten, I’m either taking a smaller gun or a bigger bullet.

        • avatarDex says:

          my glock gen 4, and two other friends of mine that own similar guns, has performed flawlessly even with tula ammo fed through it. the magazines are also flawless.

  19. avatarMark says:

    Glocks are from the dark side of the IKEA universe..I love my 3rd Gen G19.
    wouldnt trade it for any other handgun…except maybe a real nice CZ75

  20. avatarracer88 says:

    I own:
    G19 – gen 2
    G23 – gen 3
    G27 – gen 3 (EDC)

    All are utterly reliable. Mags utterly reliable out of the box. The only issue I did find was that the G23 does not like having a “tactical” light on it.

    • avatarracer88 says:

      Also, I’ve added a bunch of extra magazines to the collection. I have not seen the problems described here. They all work and work and work. I do number them with a sharpie, so I can identify any issues if they come up.

  21. avatartdiinva says:

    I feel the same way about Glocks as I do about Apple products. They are elegant, well made, accurate and reliable. They have the ultimate coolness factor and therein lays my beef. I am the antithesis of cool.

    Another characteristic that Glock shares with Apple is that they were unique and innovative products when first introduced. After 20+ years the rest of industry offers competing products with the same features. The only unique thing that Glock offers now is the coolness. You can argue, and rightly so, that guns like the Springfield XD and XDm series are copycat products but so what. They accomplish the same mission and the same price.

    • avatarMartin Albright says:

      Glocks have two other commonalities with Apple products:

      First, a “universality” in terms of configuration (I’m thinking of the iPod here) makes it easy for other companies to make accessories that will work with it (holsters, sights, etc.)

      And second, the polarized nature of their fans and thier detractors. Like Apple products, very few people are neutral about Glocks, they either love them or hate them.

      As for me, I’m a dyed-in-the-wool revolver lover. And when Glocks first came out, I dissed the “plastic” guns like everyone else.

      But now that I’ve gotten to know them (and their competition,) the Glock 23/19 (a 23 with a 9mm conversion barrel) is the only semi-auto pistol in my gun safe.

      Though more and more I’m thinking there may be room for a G21 (full size, .45 ACP) in the not-too-distant future… ;)

  22. avatarfrappe33 says:

    Thanks for the entertaining review. I appreciate reading up on new offerings and look forward to future reviews.

  23. avatarJwhite says:

    Personally… I cant beleive anyone could actually write another article on a GLOCK. Would seem to me a complete waste of time.

    - Polymer
    - Multiple Calibers
    - Police use em
    - Very popular
    - Accessories
    - They work

    Thats about all you need to know. Now I’m not bashing this article, I’m speaking in general terms. How many articles do there have to be on Glocks before we can just give it a rest.

    • avatarjake says:

      my buddy just recently fired a glock model 17… he said that it felt like the magazine was going to fall out ….. any insight?

  24. avatarsoccerdad says:

    Thanks for taking the time for a thorough review. I appreciate it. love this site.

  25. avatarJose says:

    Well, if I’m going to read about another Apple product, as a PC guy, what the hell, make it humorous. Thanks for that. And for a thorough review. One day, when I’m not dissing Apple, I may just buy a Glock. In 40. To go in my murse.

  26. avatarPaul says:

    I don’t own a Glock, but I love your writing style.

  27. avatarEd Messinger says:

    Thanks for a humorous, well-written & informative review. As one about to “bite the bullet” & buy my first Glock, I appreciate your insight.

  28. avatarMike in Oklahoma says:

    I was seriously considering one of these and actually drove to gun store to get one but something bugged me and I held off. Glad I did. I can’t imagine the reviewer stating that he could not use the full clips as DESIGNED and everyone being ok with that. To me that is a killer. I was debating between this gun and another but was leaning toward this one because of the additional capacity, but if you can’t use it…

    I’ll pass and come back with gen 5 or look into the gen 3 maybe.

    • avatarZ says:

      FYI- not buying a gun because one person had a problem with THEIR magazine is like not buying a sports car because your neighbor had a flat on his.

      • avatarCMHarris says:

        I have no problem at all getting 15 into all three of my mags. My 33 rd mag holds all 33.

        • avatarSteve says:

          Just bought a gen 4 19, and put 200 rounds through it yesterday. 100% reliable with all 3 mags loaded to 15.

  29. avatarJay Law says:

    Very informative read…I just bought a Glock 19 and I love it. it’s funny though I hate Apple products but can se the comparison between Glocks and Apple lol.

    question: I was thinking of buying some remington ammo for the range…Bass Pro Shops sell it for abut $60 for 250 rounds…should I being using that?

  30. avatarduke says:

    Just one more asshole with an opinion who thinks he is Hemmingway. Another review about a Glock 19, how unique.

  31. avatarcyph says:

    I am a minimalist when it comes to design. I think glock looks great and the functionality is amazing. Just picked up my gen 4 today…I’m going to snuggle it while I take a nap. (unloaded) ha…good review

  32. avatarFrancois says:

    ce qui la baise = wtf!

    je ne sais quoi = I know not what?

  33. avatarCyndi says:

    Love the review. We are seriously considering a Glock 19 and I’m appreciative of such an in-depth look at the pistol. BTW, your sense of humor is showing…… ‘o)

  34. avatarJust says:

    Everyone one here seems pretty knowledgeable so I’m going to ask a few questions. I am looking to get my first pistol, right now I’m set on the Glock 19 Gen 4. What is the best ammo to use? I honestly was shocked when I saw ammo is around $25 a box. I’ve always shot rifles with my father and haven’t had much experience with pistols or ammo costs. I know Walmart has a $10 box, but I don’t know if the cheap ammo is bad for the gun.

    Last question. I will take my pistol to the range and shoot it often, however, it is mainly going to be a stay at home in case of needed protection gun. Possibly a carry gun sometimes. Are their any tips on how to keep it in good shape? Such as, should I clean it on a weekly basis? There may be extended periods of time where I don’t shoot it and it is just sitting in it’s case. I’m assuming I should do clean it or do something to keep it in top working condition even though it’s not being used.

    Any responses would be great! Also, thanks for the great review. When I started doing my research on this particular pistol, this review was one of the first I read. It really helped me in making my decision.

  35. avatarSidney Burl Beavers says:

    I still have 10 or 12 Glocks . They are all Gen 1-2. I read about them coming (plastic frames) and dove in on the first delivery, have never regreted it.
    I think the 19 is the best shooting of all, feels and balances very well, have heard others feel the same way. Weak ammo won’t hurt it (neither will any thing else includeing red hot sub machine gun rounds), I’ve shot it all and never had a problem. I cleaned regular shooter when it got so fouled with powder that the slide started slowing down. once or twice a year.
    They don’t like to be Be fired with a limp wrist or low powered rounds can cause ejection problems. They are ugly as sin, the design is 25 years old. Watch The accuracy comparisons on the NEW WHO EVER COPY”S OF IT and they will shoot as well or Better. 65% of the police still have them as duty weapons.
    You don’t have to worry about them shooting after storeage or wearing out , they are built by humans But breakage is very rare, (they got tired of running toucher tests on them them because they went on for ever and just “almost” never broke.
    U tube has a guy digging one up from being buryed for 2 years it was full of mud and the springs were rusted washed it off with a hose and he and 4 other guys ran 500 rounds through it as fast as 1 could shoot it and reload for his turn. There was a miss for round # 1 and 3 more by the same guy who appeared to be limp wristing it
    You have to look it up when they dug that thing up , it looked pityful…………very impressive.

  36. avatarScouse says:

    In buying the first issue Glock19 Gen 4!! When they first came out! Mistake, pain in the butt, had a Buddy go to a Glock match last year, Glock armorers at the match, changed stuff? Now perfect.

    When you load the 15 Rd mags, with the mag loader, supplied, bash the snot out of it! It will take 15. The G17 4th Gen magazines will take 18 rounds.

    The new mag release, great, but it dug into my second finger, the corner of it! Trusty folder, and cut it off, now perfect.

  37. avatarJim B says:

    I own a 19 year old G19 as my personal carry. I have numerus mags both older and some brand new. None of them have had a feed problem and all have functioned flawlessly. As they say beauty is in the eyes of the beholder and I love the looks of the G19.

    I thought of buying a Gen 4 and after holding the gun I decided to replace all the internals in my Gen 2. I also added some upgrades and now feel I should be good for another 19 years.

  38. avatarchad haire says:

    I only use the early models without the stupid finger grooves which deter accurate shooting.

  39. avatarStrataGman says:

    Just got my new Glock 19 Gen 4, after reading alot of reviews, looking forward to getting it on a range….for personal experience, shall return with the verdict, planning on purchasing more Glocks for personal protection and possibly some comp. shooting, taking heed to all advice and/or recommendations….happy to be in the Glock Clan….be safe all and good shooting!!!

  40. avatarjim says:

    I have a third Gen glock 19 I like it no problems with it so far but would take my mp40 any day

  41. avatarAdam says:

    Hey Ralph, nice review.

    Do you know if there is any way of getting this firearm in ma? maybe by purchase online? thanks,
    Adam

  42. avatarmarc says:

    I’m sorry you live in Mass. We can have whatever we want here in NH. you want a machine gun, it goes through the BATF not NH, want a scilencer, BATF, anything else walk in the store and buy it. We can buy whatever and however many of those Glock’s we want. Live free or die.

  43. avatarRS says:

    Hello People, I just came across this place as I was researching info on Glocks. I bought my first Glock in 2005. It was the G39 .45GAP. OH…MY…GOODNESS! What a piece of garbage this gun was! It would jam repeatedly over and over again. At least once every couple of magazine loads. Whether defective or what,no one knew. My guess is that the frame was just too small for that kind of power. Anyways,I traded it in for a brand new G19 9mm that same year. Let me tell you this…that G19, which I still have to this day,is super awesome! I have shot THOUSANDS and THOUSANDS of rounds in that gun and it never jammed,not even once! Only once it failed to fire,and that was because I was using garbage winchester target ammo and that one bullet was actually about 20% smaller than it was supposed to be LOL! The saftey feature of the gun refused to fire the bullet because it did not lineup correctly. So that does not count as a misfire or error on the guns behalf. It was a faulty round. Well what I’m getting at here is…Glocks are great guns all around. As far as looks wise,I think it’s a decent looking gun. But I’m not entering the darn thing into a beauty pagent…I’m trusting it with my life and safety and those around me! Glocks get an A+ form me! As far as the magazine problem the guy was talking about…thats just because it is new and needs to be properly worked to become smooth and quick. Like all of mine have. Btw…you could probably stick a Glock in the freezer for a year and pull it out,load it and it would shoot just fine on the first try LOL! Best Guns in the world for a great price!

  44. avatarDave says:

    Just picked up my first Glock (Gen 4 Glock 19) and consider me a cult member for life! I was able to load all three mags (included) with 15 rounds each, but I really had to slam to get the last one in the first couple of times. So far, about 300 rounds down range, no FTE, one FTF (very first round – pulled the magazine, re-loaded, flawless ever since). I shoot right-handed but with my left eye, so I had to have the sights adjusted very slightly, but other than that I have found nothing whatsoever to complain about. Grip size and feel out of the box were just right, trigger feels good, accuracy is amazing. Whoever compared cleaning it to a Zen experience is my new best buddy – I love the ease with which it comes apart and goes back together. It might be a little bit large for concealment, but that hasn’t stopped me so far. Love me some Glock!

  45. A customer of ours referred us over to this page. We make custom Kydex holsters for the Glock 19, as well as most other makes/models. You can send me an email at ntcustomkydex@yahoo.com for more information.

    Please visit our Facebook page for more information and like us at http://www.facebook.com/northtexascustomkydex/

    Check out our APRIL SPECIAL on Glock holsters!

  46. avatardanny k says:

    My gen 3 has about 9000 rounds,maintained well,reliable. My gen 4 19 has about 5000 of my reloads and about 600 various factory jhp to test and is going strong,very reliable ,feeds any ammo apart from crappy reloads. Really amazed with these guns,I was always a fan of all steel handguns. I use it in idpa ssp division.

  47. avatarShawnC says:

    I just purchased a 19 gen 4 a couple of weeks ago. I took it home and started experimenting.

    All the magazines loaded to capacity with no problem. I ran several hundred rounds without a single feed problem. I used factory rounds from various manufacturers and a bunch of reloads that had been giving me feed problems in my other 9mm. As I said, no problems.

    Sights were dead on right out of the box. I truly love this gun.

  48. avatarbrad b says:

    Wow ! Great review. I’ve owned a gen1 Glock23 and found it absolutely reliable. I’m perplexed why so many still give high marks to glock despite the well publicized shortcomings of the gen 4 9mm models. For that reason I purchased a hkp30 and have had no reliability issues with mags, extraction, ejection. Not one malfunction in first 1000 rounds of fmj and personal defense ammo. I can feel the flames coming from the glockboys, but the excuses for lack of reliability in the g19 are reminiscent of a battered wife explaining how her husband is not so bad. Sad

  49. avatarJOHN says:

    Just got a Glock 19 Gen 4 Took it out to the range and burned up 2 boxes of inexpensive ammo, no problems all 3 fifteen round clips worked as they should , I could fully load them and had no isues with FTF or FTE.

  50. avatarRudy says:

    I have a Glock 19, Glock 26, and Glock 30. I also have a pile of guns from many manufacturers. I’ve put over 2,500 rounds through my Glocks without a single malfunction. While these guns are ugly and boring, its the Glock 30 that sits in my nightstand and the Glock 26 that is on my side. Utterly reliable.

  51. avatarJean Paul Coffy says:

    I just got my Glock 19 Gen 4 from my local dealer. is it normal for the serial number on the bottom of the
    gun to be different from the number on the slider?

  52. avatarSuzie Stone says:

    I just purchased a Glock 19 Gen 4. I am getting my CHP on Sunday. I am very excited.

    • avatarBrian says:

      Suzie,

      Great choice, most likely the best fighting pistol in the world.

      The magazine release, might dig in to your second finger, the one under your trigger finger.

      If it does, sharp knife, cut the corner off.
      The trigger has lines on it, hurts your finger after a lot of shooting, get a Glock Armorer replace it with a smooth one.

      Lots of dry firing, to get used to the trigger. Good Luck.

      Mike.

  53. Great review, Ralph!

    I’ve been a proud Glock 19 owner for around 5 years now. I’ve tried many other pistols, but this one is definitely the closest to my heart. Thousands of rounds fired and it still works great.

    Cheers,
    Paul

  54. avatarGreg says:

    I just purchased a G19 Gen4, can anyone recommend a good concealed carry holster? And does anyone have sound knowledge of the advantages of keeping bullets in the freezer?

    • avatarSelousX says:

      I have an Alien Gear that feels very good in which to carry my G19 Gen 4.
      I know nothing about keeping ammo in the freezer.

  55. avatarGreg says:

    Also, for SD situations, would one recommend Remington Golden Sabre 124gr or Speer Gold Dot 124gr?

    • avatarSelousX says:

      Both feed and shoot in my G19 Gen 4. I would think as long as you can put ordnance on target, either will do.

  56. avatarPerdue Glock says:

    IDK about you guys but ive fed 500+ rounds into my Glock including reloads and steel ammo and ive never had any problems loading, all i can say about this gun is reliability will make you a believer.

  57. avatarscott says:

    need a hi cap semi? This is the gun.

  58. avatarRick says:

    Alot of the fun and mystic of a Glock is like buying a Mustang….there are tons of aftermarket products to make it just what you want. If you want perfection from the start….buy a pitbull.

  59. Pingback: Glock 19: 9mm Compact Handgun, a Review - Gunflicks

  60. Pingback: Glock 19 Review - Gunflicks

  61. Pingback: GLOCK 19: THE BEST SHTF HANDGUN? - Gunflicks

  62. avatarJohnny K. says:

    I fall into that fantastic grey area regarding Glock.

    I don’t care for the idea that the safety functions are integrated
    Into the trigger. Honestly, the trigger on the trigger feels a little “funky”. However, with prolonged exposure and use its more than likely something I could learn to deal with.
    I don’t have any exposure to gen 3′s, but the initial trigger pull on the early gen 4′s outta the box felt like a rusty fuck. Like something was internally dragging. I didn’t investigate the issue, it wasn’t mine.

    However, function takes precedent when it comes to potential CCW, and self defense. Form be damned. It could look like a dog dick for all I care, so long as it’s gonna be there for me when I need it.

    In that sense, the shoe fits Glock. There’s an issue here though; a friend of my brother’s experienced an unfortunate safety failure with a Glock, and now has a colostomy bag. This isn’t the first instance I’ve heard of this, and because of this causes some reticence in me.

    Some might say that this would defeat the purpose of a carry weapon in any sense. If I were to “bite the bullet”, and buy a Glock for carry purposes; I would probably “cold carry” it. Just in the event that the worst were to happen an the internal safeties failed, the firing pin would hit nothing but air.

    Thoughts?

    I’m on the fence here though.

    • avatarMatt in FL says:

      Wrt to what you call “cold carry” aka Condition Three or Israeli Carry, do you carry now? If you do, forgive my explanation; you probably already know this. If not, consider this: Many people going through their first carry experiences transition through Condition Three on their way to carrying in with a round in the chamber. I did. Granted, I was carrying an XDm, so I had the additional grip safety “protecting me,” but when I first started that’s how I did it. After about a month I realized my finger had never come anywhere near the trigger, and I graduated to keeping a round in the chamber. I would suggest you might consider the same transition at some point, even if you initially started with an empty chamber. Carry condition is not one-size-fits-all, but many folks will be happy to tell you that having an empty chamber means you have a really expensive rock.

      I’d be interested in hearing more about that guy’s “safety failure.” Mechanical failures are vanishingly rare occurrences.

  63. avatarRick says:

    I won’t give your article credibility of a reply other than if you can’t write without being vulgar shove your article and all your guns where the sun don’t shine.

  64. avatarJebNY says:

    Just bought my first Glock, a Gen4 19 on Friday. Living in a slave state I have to wait a week or so before I can pick it up, but have enjoyed the review and comments while I wait.

  65. avatarjman says:

    6 glock owner here and have 4 friends with a total of 8 glocks. Never once have any of us seen a problem with a mag as described above.We are competition shooters running stock glocks with ghost connectors. Makes me wounder about this review…

  66. avatarRobert says:

    I also have a Glock 17 gen (4) with one big difference ” I think” in 2010 I saw a add for Zev Tech (glock works) , I do not like the trigger (stock) that Glock has on the (17), one the stock 4-5 pounds trigger pull.
    After I change out the trigger to the zev tech and set it at around (3) pounds pull, you would not believe the difference in the way the gun will preform, I have shot over (4000) rounds out of my gen (3) Glock 17 and
    have never had any problems. I do not work for Zev Tech but for around $200.00 for the trigger you will see a big difference in the way the gun works.

  67. avatarBrian Hargreaves says:

    The new shape of the magazine release, when gripping the pistol, the second finger (for me) has the bottom of the magazine release dig into it.

    Quick fix, sharp knife, slice the corner off!

Leave a Reply

Please use your real name instead of you company name or keyword spam.