By all means, buy a GLOCK. They’re simple reliable handguns, available in a smörgåsbord of size and caliber combinations, suitable for any shooter’s needs. There are more GLOCK-compatible holsters for sale than you shake a SIG at, and plenty of aftermarket goodies with which you can adorn Gaston’s Meisterwerk. Still, there are three main reasons why some gun guys and gals don’t go GLOCK . . .
1. The Grip Angle is Sub-Optimal
Give a newbie a GLOCK (not the children’s book of the same name), then have them close their eyes and point the (unloaded) gun at a target. Chances are they’ll be high. Make that they’ll be aiming high. For an explanation, we turn to Gary Marbut of the Montana Shooting Sports Association.
The 1911 grip angle (all 1911 variants, Springfield XD, etc.) is more nearly square to the slide (about 18 degrees off square), while the GLOCK grip angle (Luger, Steyr M series, H&K P7, Ruger Mk II, etc.) is more raked (about 22 degrees off square).
Neither grip angle is inherently better than the other, but some peoples’ hand and wrist anatomy just works better with one angle and some with the other. It works better to not to fight what is the anatomically-natural grip angle for you.
I couldn’t have said it better myself. So I didn’t.
2. GLOCKs Lack an External Safety
Not one of Gaston’s gats sports a safety lever mounted on the frame. There are millions of shooters who celebrate this omission. An external safety is one more thing to go wrong! A GLOCK is point-and-shoot perfection.
There are many shooters, though, who wouldn’t be caught dead carrying/shooting a handgun without an external safety. They demand an external safety for safety’s sake; it’s one more thing to prevent a negligent discharge! The little lever could also, in theory, stop a firearms-ignorant gun-grabbing perp from using your gun against you.
1911 shooters — gunnies who worship at the temple of John Moses Browning to receive the Sacrament of Single Action — feel they need an external safety to carry their gun cocked-and-locked. Without the safety, a mere touch of the trigger could send a round rocketing down the barrel. Strangely, the same worry vexes some striker-fired plastic pistol people.
3. GLOCKs Are Ugly
A GLOCK is a boring, bland, featureless firearm. For some people, that’s a good thing, not a bad thing. They view a handgun as a tool, and nothing is more Harbor Freight hammer-esque than a GLOCK. It’s so minimalist you might even say it’s got anti-style style.
If, however, you like actual design, any other handgun made is a better bet. Walthers, HKs, FN’s, SIGs, Springfields, whatever. Even ugly pistols have more presence than a GLOCK.
Is that a good reason to eschew America’s favorite handgun, a pistol that embodies the form-follows-function aesthetic so slavishly that it’s the ballistic equivalent of toothpick? Of course not! Now don’t forget to change the oil in your Toyota Corolla. As if you would . . .