I gave Gaston’s gang a bit of a kicking in my post GLOCK Gen 5 is Here! Have Guns Become Boring? Trust me: it came from a place of love. I’ve owned, carried and occasionally cleaned a number of GLOCKs, including a GLOCK 30SF and the ubiquitous GLOCK 19. OK, sure, I modified them with Ghost triggers and Trijicon night sights. But I get the GLOCK thing. The question is, should you buy the new GLOCK 17 or 19 Gen 5? Here are three reason to do so . . .
1. The finger grooves are gone!
GLOCK’s marketing mavens are bound to make a big deal about Gen 5’s new Marksman Barrel, now with traditional rifling and a match crown! They’ll trumpet the
fact claim that Gen 5 shooters will shoot more accurately with GLOCK’s new, more accurate barrel than they would with ye olde GLOCK’s polygonal rifled barrel (which sounds vaguely Mormon). Yes well . . .
For an average shooter, trigger press and grip are the critical factors for accuracy. While I don’t know if Gen 5’s trigger changes have created a better GLOCK gas pedal — they could hardly fashion a worse one — eliminating the grip’s finger grooves makes it easier for the average Joe to get a firm, comfortable, efficient, consistent hold on their GLOCK (which sounds vaguely onanistic) — both with and without gloves.
GLOCK’s grooveless grip will help shooters improve their accuracy, although I’m still thinking that GLOCK should make their grip stippling more aggressive. A deficiency that’s easily rectified with any number of aftermarket mods.
2. The magwell’s flared!
I admit it: I’m bolding, italicizing and exclamation marking the section headings ironically. None of the changes from GLOCK Gen 4 to GLOCK Gen 5 are matters of life-or-death. In fact, I’d rather see GLOCK owners practice more with their Gen 1,2,3 or 4 than worry about upgrading to Gen 5.
But TTAG readers appreciate the finer things in firearms, no matter how subtle. Like slightly better ergonomics. And slightly easier reloads. Not because you’re likely to need to reload during a defensive gun use. Because you’re going to practice doing it anyway. ‘Cause it’s cool. Tacticool!
While the GLOCK Gen 5’s new flared magwell isn’t as obvious or practical as, say, a competition STI, even a slightly flared magwell makes a big difference when it comes to slamming in a fresh mag. It’s faster. And somehow more satisfying.
And unlike flared blue jeans (don’t ask), the Gen 5 flared magwell adds some — I repeat some — truth to Huey Lewis’ assertion that it’s hip to be square. Hipper, anyway.
3. You don’t own a gun!
Yeah, it’s true: I’m out of ideas. So this last one is for your buddies who don’t own a handgun and want one and don’t want to make a mistake buying the “wrong gun” (a deep-rooted psychological desire explored in my original article). The ultimate reason to buy Gen 5: it’s a GLOCK!
That should mean rock solid reliability and an aftermarket-a-palooza, but there’s some troubling history here (cough Gen 4 recoil springs cough) and the new gun isn’t entirely backwards compatible with previous parts.
But what the heck. If you’re buying a new car you don’t buy the previous generation model. Unless it’s heavily discounted, that is. Which is not something I’d expect to see from GLOCK dealers, but you never know.
And if Gen 4 pistols are cheaper, what have you got to lose? Not much. But something.