GLOCK replacement sights
Dan Z for TTAG
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If you hate your GLOCK sights, the prescription is easy: buy a 1911.

Just kidding! Well, obviously…you can change them!

GLOCK replacement sights
Dan Z for TTAG

The stock sights are made of plastic and not beloved by many. They’re on the fragile side, and some people find the stock sights on almost any gun aren’t the easiest to get a good sight picture with. By no means is that limited to GLOCK A lot of OEM sights out there leave much to be desired.

Granted, the GLOCK Gen4 and Gen5 pistols can be ordered from the factory with steel sights or tritium night sights, but most of the GLOCKs you’ll find in stores wear the plastic sights as standard.

With that said, before you go picking up a new pair to slap on your GLOCK 19 (or what have you), you should first consider what you’ll use the pistol for. Is it a target gun, home defense, concealed carry, or a self-defense pistol? All of the above?

Okay, now that you know what you’re getting into, it’s time to shop for the right sights. As it happens, everyone and their brother makes GLOCK replacement sights, so you will find no shortage of makes/models to choose from.

For a target pistol, one of the best options is to get a sight set with a black rear and fiber optic front sight. Since fiber optic rods capture ambient light, they’re perfect for range use. The black rear sight contrasts with the front sight, making for an easy sight picture.

For instance, here’s a decent set from Sevigny Performance:

GLOCK replacement sights
Credit: Sevigny Performance

Bear in mind, many other companies make a black steel rear/fiber optic front sight set for GLOCKs. This is just one example. For target use, a black rear sight also pairs well with a brass bead front sight.

For a self-defense pistol, tritium night sights are the best practice. You can opt for standard dots, which are just white in daylight, or a night/day set. The latter will have two concentric rings in the front sight, with a contrasting outer ring. The rear sight will usually have fiber optic rods or tritium inserts, though it depends on who makes it.

Some great examples include the Ameriglo GLOCK Tritium I-Dot set:

GLOCK replacement sights

XS Big Dot sights:

XS big dot sights glock
Courtesy Brownells

TruGlo TFO sights combine tritium and fiber optic rods.

GLOCK replacement sights
Credit: TruGlo

Again, these are just a few examples. Plenty of other companies besides these make similar sets for GLOCK pistols, and many are excellent. HiViz, Meprolight, Dawson Precision, just to name a few.

Once you’ve selected your new GLOCK sights, it’s time to install them. If you’re the DIY type, it’s not hard to change them yourself, but some tools will be required.

It’s best to change sights with the slide of the pistol held in a vise, with some sort of material between the slide and the jaws to prevent marring. Nylon is good. Leather works, too or – in a pinch – a couple layers of cardboard. However, it isn’t 100 percent necessary; you can change the sights using any flat surface, but a vise makes it easier.

GLOCK replacement sights
Dan Z for TTAG

The front sight is held in place by a 3/16″ hex bolt. A ¼” drive and socket could work, though you need a deep socket or an extension to reach it. A nut driver or a GLOCK front sight tool can also be employed.

GLOCK replacement sights
Dan Z for TTAG

The rear sight is dovetailed, so it will need to be drifted out. The tools for this task are either a punch (brass, nylon or nylon-tipped are recommended, as these won’t mar the sights) and a hammer (non-marring is best) or, alternatively, you can buy a sight-pusher tool.

The latter is the best practice, as a sight pusher – basically a clamp with a jig for pushing the sight – makes the process the easiest and won’t mar the slide nor the sights themselves. Aftermarket sights aren’t cheap, so you want to take care not to damage them. A sight pusher also makes for the most precise alignment though plenty of folks change sights without one and don’t have any issues.

Here’s an example of one, the cleverly-titled Sight Master Sight Pusher Tool, available for $57 at Amazon:

GLOCK replacement sights sight pusher

Also, if installing night sights, you want to take care not to break those tritium vials. Tritium is radioactive – which is bad – but the good news is that tritium emits very low levels of beta radiation. The amount of tritium in a handgun sight is small, and tritium’s beta particles are so low-energy that they can’t even penetrate skin. It’s only dangerous if ingested through skin contact, breathing, drinking or swallowing. So be careful not to damage your night sights.

To change the sights, field strip the pistol. Using a nut driver or socket, loosen and remove the front sight. Most GLOCK sights from aftermarket producers include a nut, so the original doesn’t need to be retained. Some people keep them with the OEM sights in case they wish to sell the pistol later on.

If you have one, clamp the slide in the vise with a protective material between the jaws to keep from marring the slide. Make sure to leave a few millimeters of slide above the vise jaws.

If you’re drifting the sight out by hand, use your punch to push the sight out. You can drift them left-to-right or right-to-left; with GLOCKs, it doesn’t matter. Standard Glock sights don’t include a set screw, so you won’t have to worry about that.

However, if you don’t have a vise…here’s the redneck method. You’ll want to put something under the slide like a rag or cardboard to protect the finish. Press the slide down with the heel of your hand, while holding the punch in place against the rear sight. Push down hard; you don’t want the slide to move. There are some table-top jigs that can be purchased to aid in the process, but – again – it can be done by hand. Hit the punch until it drifts far enough out to pull by hand.

Sight pushers either can be clamped into a vise or can be used without one. Either way, you clamp the slide into place and drift the sight in or out.

Once you have the front and rear sights pulled, clean the rear sight dovetail and front sight hole with some denatured alcohol (rubbing alcohol) and wipe clean with a clean rag. Let it dry for a little bit, and now it’s time for the new sights!

Since the front sight is bolted in place, rather than drifted, it’s aligned once the bolt is tightened. A good practice is to put a little bit of blue Loctite on the bolt so vibrations don’t knock it loose.

Now, and important part of installing sights is making sure that the sights are properly aligned. You can eyeball it, or you can take some steps to make sure. I like to run a strip of blue masking tape from the front sight to the rear sight. Cut it to the width of the front sight, and all the guess work is taken out.

If using a sight pusher, start the sight in the dovetail (it should push up to one-third of the way into the dovetail by hand) and inserting the slide into the pusher. Clamp the slide, and commence to tightening. Once seated and in place, it’s a good idea to back the set screw out, give it a bit of blue Loctite, and tighten down.

If drifting in hand, you drift the new rear sight in just like the old one. Once aligned, blue Loctite, set screw, you get the idea. Again, a best practice is to use a vise but you can drift it in by hand in the manner described. Plenty of people have installed sights that way without issue, but a vise or a sight pusher makes the process faster and easier.

Once you’ve got your new sights installed, hit the range and sight in. Most rear sights can be adjusted for windage, but some – such as a competition-style sight – can be adjusted for elevation as well. Since the front sight is fixed, it doesn’t go anywhere.

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    • I was going to say a Ruger SR9. But S&W is fine too.

      Of course, the classic S&W 59 series should not be over looked either. But those are strictly used guns, not made anymore.

    • Glocks are the most over-rated firearm out there.

      Overpriced, over $500 for a $350 dollar pistol.

      Unnatural grip angle.

      Horrible plastic sights.

      Terrible triggers.

      Unsupported barrels.

      Needs a stippling job out of the box.


      No real improvements or innovations in decades. 19X is innovative?

      Needs another $500 in after-market parts to bring it up to date.

      And has been surpassed by a number of other manufacturers.

      There are sidearms that are G2G right out of the box. Glock will not spend the money to update, what the fanbois will buy simply because of the name.

        • Hey rc, all of those facts on why glocks are inferior and you attack the commentator. This leads me to believe that:

          All of the above facts on glocks are true.

          And you drink straight from the kool-aid carton and argue like a leftist; just pure projection. . ..

    • I could not agree more. The M&P 2.0 is under rated big time. It is arguably a better firearm all around and that is before you even look at the price difference. Compare price and the value goes way up.

      If you are American and you are still buying a Glock over the M&P 2.0 series maybe you shoul look into moving Austria?

      Glock’s are good guns and they forced other makers to step up. Step up they did and surpassed them in many ways.

        • Why is it dumb? If you have an American made option that is as good…as American it should be your first choice. I clearly stated the M&P 2.0 and not the 1.0. The 1.0 IMHO had enough issues to be less than the Glock offering. 2.0 ironed those issues out and now it is as good or better.

          Obviously if all you have are China options then that is what you should choose. I use iPhones because they are an American company but Chinese made phones, vs say a Samsung. That and Android is Google data collection device but that is a different topic.

          I buy American made products whenever possible.

      • Guess this would be a good time to point out Glocks are made in Smyrna Georgia, USA. Glocks are ugly. The are also reliable as a rock. I have about a quarter million rounds through my glock 22 with only one issue. An aftermarket front sight failed and left the pistol at high speed on the range. No biggie, I qualified as it was only 7 yards and closer at that point. I am not a Glock fan, but they are accurate and they work. I use one when they tell me to, and use what I want when I get to choose.

  1. If you don’t like your Glock sights… well, you have a Glock. 😀

    Love me some Glock but given the effort they put into the sights I wish their guns just came flat top and milled for aftermarket.

      • That’s funny but actually makes some sense considering that Glock actually does make or use nice metal target sights that some of their imports wear.

      • Fun fact:

        To meet the ATF Importation required points (, certain models of Glocks (such as their subcompacts like the 26 & 27) are shipped to the US with the Glock plastic adjustable sights to gain an additional 10 import points (this is also why these models have the “target trigger” with the ridges). The sights are then removed and standard non-adjustable (or metal sights for those packaged accordingly) are then installed and shipped to the distributors.

        It’s good to see how the ATF importation point system has really reduced crime and kept us from such awful things such as Austrian-installed fixed plastic sights!

        This is also the same system that has kept us safe by not allowing the importation of the really scary Models 25 & 28 guns with their cop killer .380 bullet clips!

    • MadCapp’s right, in a way. My nightstand G17 has aftermarket tritium sights, but my G26 has its original sights. If I had to draw and aim in an emergency, I’m going to rely on my “muscle memory” and training more than the sights themselves.

      Frankly, for daylight shooting, I’ve never had a problem with the factory Glock sights. Only the ones I’ve kitted for possible nighttime use have aftermarkets. Frankly, I think people complain about sights almost as much as they complain about calibers or anything else…just train with your gun and become proficient with it. Slapping steel sights won’t make you better. Training makes you better.

      But that’s just me.

    • I have a 15 year old Glock 17 gen 3 with the orginal sights. I have drawn that gun out of a safari holster thousands of times as I use it for shoot-steel matches at my gun club.

      Glock plastic sights work. I think the ball in the bucked works perfectly good. Night sights, while I do have them on my other pistols (Trijicon HD’s) I mainly have them for the large front yellow/green sight. I use a flashlight at night, which pretty much turns any night sight into black steel sights.

    • What is there to fix about a Glock? It’s the AK of the handgun world. You pull go switch, bullits come out front end. It’s a handgun, not a precision rifle. If you’re using it at a range where sights matter, you done goofed.

      • Glock haters are all the same kind of chump.

        TruGlo TFO (grn/grn) are the best tactical sights in the business. Buy the MGW sight pusher too for about $100 and do your friends as well. It will make you more popular even with the bad breath and poor sense of humor.

        If you can afford $60 for a flat faced Overwatch Precision Polymer DAT trigger or a Suarez Intl model, you will have a VERY accurate blaster that is ultra-dependable.

        • Where are you getting that MGM pusher for about $100?? Don’t forget all the money a typical Glock fanboy pours into their Glock to replace perfectly working parts.

          I do understand why some get the grip all carved up by some custom shop… they can feel as good in the hand as say a M&P or one of the many other as good/better polymer pistols on the market in 2019.

  2. I never left Jeff Cooper’s favorite pistol go in the first place. As he said;” it’s the most predominant artefact of the 20th century.”
    I never liked playing with plastic guns as a child. Why in the world would I want one now?

  3. Hienie Straight 8 night sights on medium and full size pistols. Hienie Pro Slant are good too. XS Big Dot on 42 and 43s.

  4. I hope y’all realize the current fashion of blacked out rear sights is just a scam to get everyone (and every department) to dump the three-dot Trijicons they were convinced to buy five-fifteen years ago, then supplement them with red dot sights, so they can be convinced to buy the old style /again/ five years from now when people realize the red dots are conducive to bad shooting habits. Trijicon leading this charge on both the iron & electro-optic front should be evidence enough.

    Only half-joking

    • I find three dot sights (of any type) way too busy to use at speed. I much prefer a “dot the i” setup or a blacked out rear.

      Besides, I cannot count how many times I’ve found three dot sights that were not regulated… lining up the dots did NOT line up the front and rear sight properly. I’ve even seen this with night sights.

      • FWIW, in my experience Trijicon HD 3 dot sights are extremely fast to use because of the massive front dot. There are probably others just as great but these are the ones I’ve shot with extensively.

        • I installed Trijicon HDs on my primary carry, a Walther PPQ 45 before the 1st range session (along with an SS guiderod and 20# WC spring), like the sights so much, I installed Trijicon Bright and Toughs on my HK P7 M13 shooter, just in case I ever decide to carry it.

    • I like straight 8’s and am eager to try the newish u notch big dot. My theory is relax and let the shot make the mark.

  5. quote—————-The front sight is held in place by a 3/16″ hex bolt. A ¼” drive and socket could work, though you need a deep socket or an extension to reach it. A nut driver or a GLOCK front sight tool can also be employed.——————quote

    Bullshit. A standard socket is too big in outside diameter to get inside the slide. You will need the special glock sight tool to remove the old nut and install the new nut. Older Glocks front sights are staked in and you can just rip the cheap ass old sight off by going in through the bottom of the slide with a pair of needle nose pliers to get at the plasticky wedge. You could use a pair of vice grips on the top of the sight but that is the hard way to do it.

    Remember one thing tritium sights are useless in a real gun fight as you can only see them in almost total darkness and the first shot will blind you with the muzzle flash. Your way better off to use a flashlight (not a laser sight)These tritium sights are only good for finding a gun at night if its laying nearby your bed. They also have a half life of only 5 years and after that they are often too dim to see. And remember since you cannot identify your target in total darkness you may just end up shooting a family member by mistake. Which by the way has happened when using these sights. See the old Gun Week news article about a paranoid moron cop who shot and killed his son who came home early from college one night. Laser sights could cause the same tragedy.

    • Exhibit #385 that Vladdy body knows jack shit about gun fights. I’ve shot my Glock34 for time in pitch darkness before kiddo. The muzzle flash you’re complaining about doesn’t exist with quality ammo.

      • I’ve removed and replaced Glock front sights with needle nose pliers… I now own three Glock tools because I keep putting them away in the wrong drawer and re omens them over the frustration of doing it my old way.

        Why replace the sights? Because perfection to the power of two is twice as perfect!

    • FYI Vladdy boy… The half life of tritium is 12.3 years. That means that in 12.3 years, the sights will be half as bright as they are when you bought them. (Since it’s a relative brightness, the shelf life doesn’t matter.) Looks like guns aren’t the only thing you know jack shit about.

    • I used a socket to remove my front sight. It has a bottleneck and fit just fine. Another thing you’re wrong about.

    • Hahahaha, that’s good and I like Glocks. 😂
      First thing I do to a Glock is the .25¢ trigger job, 2nd is the sights.

  6. Think of Glock factory sight as the equivalent of those tactical pants that come with a belt.
    Just throw the cheap things away and get a real belt, or sights in the case of the Glock

    • Kind of like a good 1911? (Ducks)

      Don’t forget the stippling job, the custom back plate with Molon Labe, a ghost 3.5 lb trigger bar, a modified magazine plate to make it easier to strip out a mag, a match grade barrel, a zev tech slide with cutouts, a cerakote finish.

      What did I miss?

  7. I thought the first piece of advise was the best; trade for a 1911. If you think you need a double stack, Rock Island has it in 45 acp (holds 13 + 1), 9mm (light recoil and holds 17+1) or the 22TCM (almost no recoil and holds 17+1). I have been quite impressed with mine.

    I have never quite liked the way the Glock feels in my hand. I prefer the grip angle of the 1911, with oversized grips. but I know a few people who like the Glock. one of the people I shoot with says he puts his in the top shelf of the dishwasher to clean it, and just scrubs the barrel separately before a quick spray of CLR before reassemble. I’d like to think he’s kidding, but I doubt it.

    • I despise the 1911 design. It was cutting edge in 1911, but technology marches on. These days, it shoots an under-powered cartridge out of a gun with a half dozen unnecessary points of potential mechanical failure.

      1911 = Old and Busted
      Glock 34 MOS = New Hotness

      • Luv ’em both, 1911s and Glocks. Two completely different designs for two completely different feelz. Like automatic transmission vs. stick shift…they’ll both get you to where you want to go, depending upon how you want to drive.

      • Walther PPQ = New Hotness
        Fixed that for you.
        Having fired almost every production poly handgun released in the past 3 decades, the Walther PPQ was the first poly I actually wanted to OWN.

    • Rock island hi caps are junk made on first generation para equipment from the 80s the interior machine work is horrible. You may as well count on doubling the cost of that gun to make it run right. And at that point your at metro arms pantera(real 2011 platform) or used sti market. And that a hole new ball game you cant compare a 500.00 item to 850.00 to a1500.00 unless there specifically meant to compete with one another and rock island hicap are not a glock competitor. Glock sights overwelm the eyes with information making them slow just like any 3 focal point system.

    • I’ve shot a friend’s PPQ with the speed sights. Have to admit, the triple diamond arrangement works great.

  8. The interwebs thinks Glock sights suck.

    I say that it is wrong. They are fine. I have been shooting Glocks for 30 years, and they are fine. I had a G34 with over 35,000 rounds through it and the sights were still fine.

    The biggest problem with them that I find is a problem that isn’t improved with many aftermarket sights. The rear notch is too narrow.

    Here’s my $0 way improve Glock sights.

    1) spin the rear sight around so that its just a black rear sight that you see.
    2) use a needle file to widen the rear sight so that there is about half of the front sights width on each side of the front sight when its aligned.


    • Don, I would agree with you. I think the bigger issue is that they are plastic, not that they are “horrible” to use. The white line on the rear site is actually fairly intuitive. I come from the law enforcement side of things, and the plastic has been problematic from time to time. As someone who became a firearms instructor in 2007 and taught many academies, I have seen my share of rear sights pop off when doing one-handed malfunction drills (racking slide on boot, gun belt, or holster with rear sight).

      At least with the Glock, it is an easy fix. Most people do not practice these skills and will never experience these issues.

  9. Do any of the Military branches use Glocks as their standard issue pistol? If so, what model Glock do they use and what sights come with it?
    Also, are they allowed to modify the pistol in any way?
    What pistols do the special forces (SEALS, Green Berets, Deltas) typically use?

    • Almost all of the US “special forces” branches use Glocks. (Seals, SF, Delta, Marsoc and Recon) I believe Glock 19’s, Gen 4’s.

      The rest of the military is switching from the Berreta M9 to the lowest bidder Sig gun that goes off when you drop it.

      • You “believe” wrong Larry.

        ‘Special Forces’ are not limited to ” I believe Glock 19’s, Gen 4’s “. Whatever fits the role or personal preference is used.

  10. Tell your doctor you have decided to stop your transition, sell the Glock to a women’s gun club, buy a 1911.

  11. I have a better idea. If the gun you bought for self defense does not have the trigger, sights or grip you don’t like you bought the wrong gun. Find one that you like better and trade up to it.

  12. Some people get tired of what works. I’m planning on building lazer guns but can’t figure how to get the lazer to instantly kill with a head shot. Energy requirements are too high to produce a head spitting beam. I also have a conudrum with some of the physics involved, its like a gaussian shotgun but with electomagnets of some kind. Like a kinetic magnetic field that discharges energy based projectiles. The charge pushes to the shooter then slingshots forward.

    So what launch bullets now is fine but in the future there will be lazers and it will make all existing platforms obsolete..

    • Ok, thanks for that.
      Now go back to the Popular Mechanics website to read about more stuff that won’t even exist before your grandkids are gone.

  13. Why do all the Glock HATERS read these articles and/or just jump to the comment section to have a bitch fest? This activity is just shallow childish bullshit: grow up, man up and go play in your own yard of handguns you prefer. Just as others won’t change your handgun preference, you won’t change the preference of others. You folks are just like the “anybody but Trump” asshats, only your mantra is any handgun but Glock! You kiss each others butts over their varied non-Glock choices as long as they focus on bashing Glock.

    My above comment won’t deter the Haters, it’s a matter of maturity, which some will never attain.

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