GLOCK 19 for Concealed Carry: Holsters, Triggers, and Other Considerations

GLOCK 19 for Concealed Carry

Image via Glock

Gaston Glock hit a home run with his GLOCK 19 pistol.  Not only do police agencies worldwide use it, but so do lots of American civilians.  Like many gazillions of other good guys, I use a GLOCK 19 for concealed carry.  In fact, I’ve packed the G19 for close to twenty years now for self-defense.  While GLOCK makes other 9mm carry pistols such as the GLOCK 17 and GLOCK 26, I keep coming back to the G19.  For me, it strikes the perfect balance of size, firepower, controllability, versatility and ease of use in a carry gun.  And plenty of people agree with me, as they carry it, too.

The GLOCK 19 has garnered a huge share of the law enforcement market for many of the same reasons it makes a good choice for everyday Americans to carry.  In short, because it works.  GLOCK pistols point naturally and function reliably.  Not only that, but given their popularity, finding holsters and accessories is easy.  While you might have a serious crush on the latest “wondergun,” you may have to visit a custom holster maker for a decent carry rig.

Holsters

Yes, when you buy a gun you need a holster.  I prefer the comfort and concealability of an inside the waistband (IWB) holster.  Because of the GLOCK 19’s popularity, endless carry holster options exist.  These include the easy-to-clean and gun finish-friendly kydex, as well as leather holsters, and hybrids using both kydex and other materials.

Over the years, I’ve tried a number of IWB holsters for my G19, but I have settled on the Bladetech Nano.   Without a doubt, it rides very comfortably inside my waistband.  I have a simple “comfort” test: can I sleep comfortably wearing the holster while laying on it?

At the same time, like all good CCW rigs, it conceals well.  Far better than any outside-the-waistband (OWB) holster I have found.  While some leather OWB rigs can look good and provide comfort, civilians usually prefer better concealment.  Law enforcement officers have different needs than concealed carry holsters.

For those who really want the inside scoop, I carry the GLOCK 17 version of the Nano, so I can simply switch out to the larger, full-size pistol if I wish.  Alternatively, I can also carry the GLOCK 26 in the same gun holster for those days when I want a very-low profile in less permissive environments or in a suit where discretion reigns supreme.

I have avoided leather rigs because they can absorb sweat, and over time, they can start to stink as bacteria grow in the leather.  They also tend to come with steeper price tags than kydex rigs.

Alien Gear makes some nice hybrid carry holsters that a lot of folks like.  I personally don’t care for the big piece of material riding against my body (absorbing sweat and odors over time), but your mileage may vary.

For the last month or so, I’ve carried the Bravo Concealment Torsion IWB carry rig as part of testing and evaluation.  It has performed quite nicely, bordering on exceptionally well.  Look for a formal review on that soon.

Other considerations.

While plenty of manufacturers offer all manner of products that supposedly improve a GLOCK’s performance, I stick with almost a completely stock gun for self-defense.  I prefer Gen 3 and Gen 4 GLOCKs, but they all feel and function very similarly.

Sights

I install night sights, as anyone should do for self-defense.  After all, a majority of critical incidents occur in low-light environments.  Funny how bad guys prefer to ply their trade in the dark.  I like Trijicon all-green, three-dot sights.  Yes, tritium sights come in other colors and sight formats.  Pick a type of sight and stick to it.  As far as colored tritium sights (orange for instance), in my past experience, they do no last nearly as long as the green ones.

Trigger

The other modification I make involves installing a 3.5-pound factory GLOCK trigger connector.  Frankly, I debated omitting this bit of information, but thought it might help some new shooters.  No doubt, some will flame me for installing a lighter-than-factory-standard trigger pull on a personal defense gun.  Flame away.

A lighter, 3.5-pound trigger allows me greater precision in my shots.  This reduces the chances of errant shots wounding bystanders, making it safer for others.  Not only that, but if I can make good hits on a bad guy, it makes it safer for the bad guy.  How so?  Fewer holes mean they may suffer less permanent damage.

Why not make other changes?  Well, GLOCK engineered the guns with parts that provide nearly flawless performance.  Any aftermarket parts add an unknown variable into that equation.  You know the old expression, “If it works, don’t fix it”?  I practice it.  You should as well.

Magazines

For self-defense, stick with the factory GLOCK magazines.  Don’t buy some cheap-skate, gun show no-name aftermarket magazine “guaranteed” to work.  On the other hand, if you want to buy quality aftermarket magazines for practice or competitions, have at it.

For aftermarket magazines, I really like the new(ish) Pmags for GLOCKs.   I have a few and they have proven reliable and affordable at the same time.  Regardless of factory originals or Magpul PMags, buy them now while you can get them cheap.  Do not wait until President Donald Trump leaves the White House.

Final thoughts…

The selection of concealed carry handguns can boggle the mind.  While I really liked the new Sig P365, I still carry my G19.  Once in a while I’ll swap out the 19 for a full-size GLOCK 17.  Other days, I’ll carry the smaller GLOCK 26, sometimes called the “Baby GLOCK.”  No matter the model, I like how the function remains identical among the small, medium and large GLOCK 9mm pistols.

Most days though, I have the G19 because for me – and probably a million other good guys – it strikes the perfect balance of size, capacity and concealability in my everyday life.

As much as other guns may shoot nicely or appeal to me, I stick with the gun that works intuitively for me after all these years.

comments

  1. avatar L says:

    I envy you guys who can pack larger guns like this. I live in Florida where it’s summer 9 months of the year and spring the other 3. That with the fact I’m smaller framed (115 lb), I’m relegated to my 6+1 sub comp for my whole life haha. Not that I don’t trust my life with it.

    1. avatar Manse Jolly says:

      Probably like many, I switch between summer and winter carry. In the summer, I carry a CM9. In the winter a Glock 19.

      ..and yes, winter to me is anything below 68deg. lol

      I really can’t fathom how people are able to live up North in the cold. just sayin’

      1. avatar Jon in CO says:

        I’ve carried a G21 before in summer. 85°, shorts and a teeshirt. It can be done. Granted, humidity sucks. I don’t know how people live in south Texas with humidity. I’ll stick to dry and cold.

    2. avatar Matt says:

      Same here. I cannot conceal any double stack wearing just a shirt. I know many manage to do it, i cannot and I am neither obese nor skinny.

    3. avatar Jean-Claude says:

      That’s the truth. I have a G19 and love it, but I carry my Kahr CM9.

    4. avatar Steve Eisenberg says:

      I carry in places which say “no firearms.” I don’t mean police stations or courts, but when I was a teacher I carried in a public school every day. The best I could do was a G43 in a back-pocket holster. Very concealable.

      Otherwise I carry an IWB G27. I have a G19 and to use as my nightstand piece.

  2. avatar Michael Buley says:

    I have a Glock 19, carry it sometimes. I always carry outside. Concealed under an untucked shirt and sport jacket. I’m favoring the Glock 23 in .40. A bit smaller and lighter, 13+1, and I like the power of the hollow points I have in there.

    I have the Alien Gear holsters. I like ’em a lot. That said, I ordered a Craft Holster for $30. It’s what I’m using now. Light, tight up against my body (I carry outside), no extraneous plastic to contend with when getting up and down, into the car, sitting. I’m surprised at how much I like this holster. It has the snap for security, which I’m not really keen on — one extra thing to do to draw — but the weight and feel of it are winners for me. Ordering one for the Glock 19, too, to compare.

    1. avatar Ing says:

      I hadn’t heard of Craft Holsters before. They have a ton of options for surprisingly good prices. I’ve been wanting an OWB holster with retention for open carry — I think I know where I’m going to get it now.

      1. avatar Michael Buley says:

        My search seemed like it would never end for a holster that felt right. I’d found Alien Gear by then, and I like their holsters, too. Their ‘lifetime shell exchange’ program is really nice. You buy the molle holster with a particular shell for your gun. You can swap it for something else, at any time, at no charge. Just send in the one you have. I’ve done it a few times.

        But this very affordable Craft Holster — I don’t really want to take it off! Just need to try it with the Glock 21 / 19. They ask for a specific model gun. But the holster isn’t custom fitted to that specific gun. So I know one for the 21, will hold the 19.

        I’d never heard of Craft until someone mentioned it on another thread somewhere. The sharing of information is extremely valuable.

      2. avatar daveinwyo says:

        Have a Craft Holster cross-draw for my LC9. Had been looking for a US co. cross-draw ever since I got the gun. Apparently the closest I could get was AIWB which is NOT cross-draw. I did not want more plastic holsters. Saw an add on Amazon. Went to the page and WOW real leather! Ordered the holster then and there. Fits ME and fits my gun very well. Made in Europe. They make each holster one at a time , long wait.

    2. avatar LazrBeam says:

      I, too, have a G23 and really like it. Have a Tagua holster for it. Now, for sh#ts and giggles, I’m thinking about getting a 9mm barrel and mags for lower cost range time.

    3. avatar el possum Gordo horrible con un miembro chiquito says:

      Any significant difference in felt recoil between the G23 and G19? I am more familiar with the G17 and G22 and was amazed by how small the difference in felt recoil was for me.

      1. avatar Michael Buley says:

        My limited experience — a few hundred rounds through them — is that the 23 has a bit more kick to it. The 19 is bigger, absorbs the recoil better, it seems. Not a great difference between them. I like the 23 for carry because it’s smaller and lighter. Not by a great amount. I just like the feel of the .40 better.

        When I compare the velocity / ft lbs (if they are accurate measures) of the .40 hollow point vs the .45, they’re about identical (around 500 ft lbs), at least with the brand I carry (Hornady; don’t have the specific cartridge in front of me). Both guns are 13+1. So for now, I carry the .40. I don’t carry an extra mag. I do carry on my right side, outside, as well: a Ruger LCR .357. I use an Alien Gear holster for that, very secure, slid back aways, right up against me, and I hardly know it’s there. But I know it’s there.

        1. avatar Jon in CO says:

          The 19 and 23 are IDENTICAL in size and weight. There might be a fraction of ounces differences, but they are the same gun, as well as the 32.

    4. avatar RidgeRunner says:

      Good call, gonna get one. G19 out of the box is the most natural shooting pistol I ever picked up, for me.

  3. avatar Bearacuda says:

    I tend to alternate between my Glock 19 and my 5″ FDE M&P2.0. The Glock conceals better but it’s only just big enough to get a full grip. In the winter I can conceal the longer grip of the M&P and if I had to shoot with winter gloves on I’d trust the stock grip texture to work better than stock Glock texture. Can’t afford stippling at this point.

  4. avatar Anner says:

    Is that picture of sight options showing 2x Kahr pistols?

    1. avatar Jon in CO says:

      They’re definitely not Glocks.

  5. avatar Vinnie Boombotts says:

    I kind of like the Clinger Holsters. They cover the slide on both sides and have a nice retention. The Stingray is relatively cheap too and delivery is quick. I also like the Theis holsters too. He does a nice job and the holsters are quality.

  6. avatar craig says:

    The 365 Huh?? Does the firing pin still work???

    1. avatar Chucky says:

      Quit being a little bitch. Let it go bruh.

  7. avatar Jonndoe says:

    I just picked up a surplus OWB three slot pancake leather holster made for a P5 wet molded It to my Glock19 lose shirt or a wind breaker conceals just fine and It’s comfy

  8. avatar mary j prather says:

    Do not forget the inexpensive holster sold under the GLOCK name.

  9. avatar TP says:

    All talk about the G19 but the two pistols pictured aren’t Glocks ???

  10. avatar tdiinva says:

    More The Truth about Glocks.

    The 19 is a great carry gun but the reason for its popularity with law enforcement has as much to do with cash and hookers as it does with the gun’s quality. But I guess cash to antigun politicians is ok because it’s only for profit.

  11. avatar Panda Operator says:

    No reaction about “civilian” written in the article above? (First paragraph)

    If the police chief or the Sheriff had said that, it would be a terrible drama in the comment section. The sovereign citizen wannabe of TTAG would be screaming for a revolution!

  12. avatar Hoyden says:

    Muddy River Tactical makes a nice, smooth, moldable (Buffalo) leather IWB holster with steel clip. Works on all “compact” polymer/strikers. G19, P-10c, VP9, etc.

  13. avatar Chris Morton says:

    Non-tucked IWB Holster: Don Hume 715M
    Tuckable IWB Holster: Galco SOF Tuck
    Trigger: 3.5lb. Ghost Connector
    Ammunition: Winchester White Box 147gr. JHP

  14. avatar Daniel says:

    Glock 23 is better because you can convert it to 9mm with a barrel and mags if you need to shoot something weaker.

    1. avatar Chris Morton says:

      Recoil of the stock Glock 22 is nasty. I can’t believe that the 23 is tamer.

      A 22lb. recoil spring turned my G22 into a different gun. Some day I’ll try the same thing with a G22.

      1. avatar Chris Morton says:

        Correction: G23

      2. avatar Only Glock says:

        The reason for the added kick is the extra length barrel which causes higher pressures and higher velocities for the same bullets from a 23 and 22. Whether you are shooting .40 or 9mm. I also changed the recoil spring for the 9mm conversion. I honestly havent noticed much difference at all with either spring. They look identical.
        I use a leather STONER holster that isn’t cheap but fits the 23 amazingly well. No need for a strap and it’s an IWB type. Had it four years in Florida and it never stinks but I’m not playing sports with it and its very comfortable.

  15. avatar mlk18 says:

    When are you finally just going to change the name of this blog to Glock Talk? They have to be part owner or at least your primary advertiser for every other article to be yet another Austrian ass-kissing.

  16. avatar Timothy says:

    For work at my department I carried the Glock 19 with a Blackhawk hard plastic holster. We just switched to the Gen 5 always been a big fan of the Glocks but this one with the ameriglo hi-viz night sights is a little bit nicer than usual. For years I have been carrying my gen 3 G23 and a gym for G27. 27 is perfect for concealed carry for me. Off duty I usually use a cross breed leather and Kydex in the waistband holster. Love it.

  17. avatar raptor jesus says:

    I wouldn’t say they point naturally, but I’m enjoying my Glock 45 (which is 9mm, for those keeping track).

  18. avatar Cloud says:

    Best holster I ever bought was the T Rex Arms side car.

    1. avatar Bob Skinner says:

      I also thought the T-Rex Arms was the bees knees. But the Tier 1 has it beat by a mile. If you ever get a chance to try it, you Will be a new owner of one.

  19. avatar Scoutino says:

    Five generations of perfection, one more perfecter then the previous and they still didn’t figure out how to make a grip that doesn’t feel like 2×4 in my hand.

  20. avatar A-aargh15 says:

    I use the Blackhawk Tecgrip holster for my G19. It’s so comfortable you almost forget that it’s there. And it stays in place; doesnt ride up or ride down.

    I replaced the Glock sights with the Tru-Glo tritium fibre optic sights. Put the same sights on my G42 as well.

    I also installed one of those mag-well cap thingies for the hollow part of the mag-well. Did it on the G19 and G42. Went with plain jane; no graphics.

    I didn’t do any other mods to the G19. But I did install an extended slide release on the G42.

  21. well , I don’t have a Glock, I like my sigs, and revolvers, but tried a g19 appendix style and have to say the gun Is not the problem, the problem most of you have carrying it is the extra bulk that some of the holsters add. just putting the gun in the wait band , down until only the grip is above the belt line , the gun disappears under a t- shirt. ( IT WAS UNLOADED, I saw the video of the guy shooting himself) . the problem is the holster, and it has to cover the trigger, so to avoid accidental voice changing discharges, ( and the guy who shot himself had that) . I have carried N frames under a T shirt and they disappeared. ( I will say though, in the summer you KNOW the gun is there). I can see the lure of the Glock 19, good size, still able to get a grip on it, good ammo count , controllable . and a loose T shirt with that underneath and you are well ready to defend yourself, but I confess, I mostly carry a revolver, ( 5-6-or 7 shot capacity, depends how I feel) or my walther PPKs . ( very flat). and find that quite comfy. so you just have to experiment. I have also carried my Sig p228 under my T shirt ( no holster, long double action first shot) and it was not noticeable at all. any IWB holster that is good will have the clip higher than the cylinder or ejection port so only the grip sticks out up over the belt line. a loose t- shirt the gun disappears. you may have to squat down to pick something up depending on how big you are/how long the gun is.

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