Tuesday, May 12, 2009


OK, the time has come to explain the facts of life to the Glock-lovers out there. I do this not because I hate Glocks (in the interest of full disclosure, I'll admit to owning two of them at present), but to reach out to the poor, misguided folks who worship the things as if God himself crafted the first one and handed it down to Adam on the 8th day.

And that is, of course, silly. Every true scholar knows that God gave Adam a Model 1911 in .45 ACP.

But I digress.

Glocks have their good points. With approximately 34 parts per pistol, They are simple. So simple in fact that R. Lee Ermey is a Glock spokesman. R. Lee is a pretty simple guy so I'm not surprised that he's signed on with Glock. Of course the serious checks they write to him probably factor in there to some extent.

Glocks are also reliable. Seriously, you can't kill one. They are routinely torture-tested by gun mags and abused by police officers, more of whom carry Glocks these days than anything else, and they keep on shooting. Remember the old Timex watch slogan? "Takes a licking, but keeps on ticking." Well Glocks keep ticking too, often long after similar guns would have broken. They really are that good.

So what's my beef with them, you ask? It's simple:

Glocks have no soul.

Sure, the Glock is reliable, and it will probably never let you down, but it just lacks the aesthetic appeal of traditional sidearms like the Colt Peacemaker, the aforementioned 1911, the Browning Hi-Power, the Walther PPK or P-38, the Luger, and many other classic pistols. Traditional pistols tend to be designed with style in mind as much as performance. But the Glock? Heck, it's a squared-off hunk of steel and plastic with a matte black finish that has all of the grace and charm of some fifth-grader's shop class project. Visually appealing, they ain't.

Seriously, the Glock has all of the romance and sex appeal of your father's Oldsmobile. And yeah, if it's your first gun, I can see the allure, but like that "cool" AOL account that you used to use when you first discovered the internet, eventually you need to grow beyond it.

And that brings to mind another issue--the price.

Right now, Glocks are probably the cheapest service pistols out there. This is another reason why just about every novice shooter has one. You can buy 'em even if you're on a budget. And if you're a police officer...well Glock damn near gives them to police departments for free, just to get the service contracts and accessory sales.

And you probably thought that most police officers carry them because someone decided that they were the best pistols on the market, didn't you? Ha! Money talks and municipal bean-counters love bargains.

So what we really have is a rather ugly black plastic and steel pistol that works and works well, but it's about as cool as a moped, especially when stacked up against elegant and sophisticated sidearms like my personal favorite, the H&K P7. The P7 has been called "the sniper rifle of pistols", and I often tell folks that it a true specialists' weapon--elegant and precise, the equivalent of a Jedi Knight's light saber. Serious gun enthusiasts who recognize the P7 in the holster of a shooter instinctively know that said shooter is a man (or woman) with sophisticated taste. By that same standard, the Glock identifies it's owner as well: Joe six-pack. A guy (or gal) who goes through life meeting expectations but rarely if ever exceeds them. Parents approve of their daughters dating Glock owners, because Glock owners, like their Glocks, are safe and predictable. They don't scream "Man of action!" like the 1911 does, or "Renaissance Man" like the Hi-Power does. Nah. There are few surprises from the Glock, and that's primarily my objection to them. While I won't ever deny that they are effective and affordable, the fact is that they're just too plain and commonplace for a discriminating shooter like myself.

Granted, if I had to defend myself in a pinch, I'd feel more than ready with a Glock in hand, but until that day comes around again, I'll just continue to smile condescendingly at those folks who carry Glocks and go "Tsk, tsk, tsk..." when they're out of earshot.


  1. Well said sir -
    I carry a Glock for work, because I have to.

    But when I want to go shooting it's the 1911 that feels best.

  2. OK, Glocks are tools. Effective, reliable, excellent tools of self defense. Mine is perfect for my hand. It's light. It's absolutely dependable. And the boxy shape is modern, pretty and very cool!

    While it doesn't have PANACHE, it's an absolutely perfect tool.

    And while I still lust for the 1911, this does not diminish my absolute respect and adoration for my Glock. It will never let me down.

  3. Wow, you really put some thought into that. I can see how Glocks are beneathe someone as unpredictable, sophisticated and experienced in the ways of the gun as yourself.
    Ummm but...when you find you can't take it anymore and see yours as nothing more than a blemish on your otherwise stellar collection...please send them to me at 1234 Glocklove Way...
    I'd be more than happy to take those ugly boring things off your hands. :-)

  4. Anonymous2:05 PM

    If you decide to part with those ugly Glock critters. I will adopt them.

  5. Anonymous3:03 PM

    Not a fan of Glock or HK. Tested the HK's and the hype outways the gun, in my IMHO. HK is so expensive, and all those video games out there with the Navy Seal coming out of the water is by far the best advertisement and one of the largest reasons HK is commanding such a price. When you go to a gun show, watch the sneer on the HK dealers face, when they tell you, nope can't buy that one, nope you can't buy this one. They get pure delight out of it.

    HK didn't perform as well as I thought. But that is just me. The prices are outrageous. I think I will stay with my 92D Beretta, and the 1911, as my top two favorites. PPK is nice, PX4 storm Beretta is cool too.

  6. Um, yeah....I will take any donated Glocks you want to part with out my way, as well! lol. :)

    I have the G23 and the G21SF. LE night sights on both of them. And I think they are pretty! :)

    But, I do like other handguns....I just trust my Glock to perform each and every time I pull it out.

  7. Nicki, a hammer ia also a perfect tool, but you are just as likely to see one of those in my holster.

    I will not own a Glock. Partly for the reasons mentioned in the post. And partly because of the 1/2 ounce trigger pull. Yes, I know it's more like three pounds, but it might as well be half an ounce for all it's worth.

    A recruit in my academy had an "Accidental Discharge" with a Glock when his holster strap slipped into the trigger guard. I can put my thumb on the hammer of my HK or Sig when holstering to make sure nothing is blocking my trigger. Can't do that with a Glock.

    I also despise the grip angle on Glock products. I'm sure if you shoot Glocks, and only Glocks, you'll get used to it, but for me a Glock will consistently point high. I can effectively point shoot with any pistol I own, but not with a Glock.

    My opinion is that it's fine if people want to carry Glocks, but if you shoot a Glock, you should shoot only Glocks.

    Did I mention I don't like Glocks?

  8. I carry a Glock for work. I'm a Glock Armorer. I love the Glock because it's indestructible and reliable. But you are right, there is no panache or sex appeal. It's a great LE tool but not the only one out there. If my department let officers carry any gun they could qualify with, I'd probably have a huge collection of duty weapons of all different types. There's a lot of great stuff out there.

    Officer Smith, I know this won't make you a Glock lover but I need to make a correction. There are numerous trigger pulls with Glocks and you can increase them quite easily, and legitimately. Any agency, like mine, can easily adjust it upward. Our Glocks with the heavier pulls have been through multiple officer involved shooting and the accuracy has not been affected.

  9. Anonymous10:03 AM

    I've never shot a Glock but did look at them when I was shopping for a conceal carry weapon. Some people like them and the boxy shape but I was very turned off by the look. My primary conceal guns are a 40 cal Beretta PX4 Storm and a .380 Walther PPK that I find visually appealing and capable weapons.

  10. Officer Smith - everyone's hands are different, and everyone's tastes are different. I have never had a negligent discharge with a Glock. I'm consciously aware of the light trigger pull as well as the absence of an external safety, and I'm much more vigilant because of it.

    You know what they say about opinions. :-) I love my Glock.

  11. I initially had a choice for my first semi and I chose a Glock. Now I dont have a choice and I still have a GLock ( 23).

    It isn't pretty , it is boxy ugly as a matter of fact. It has no external safety ( which I am fine with). The .40 seems like a decent round and although it ( or me ) isn't as accurate as the revolver I was first issued when hired ( Ruger Service Six in .38/.357), it has been ultra-reliable and accurate enough that for my on duty purposes...it is a great weapon.

  12. Glocks may have no soul, but they do have everything else.

    And that is what gets you through the night.

  13. Yeah, I know, Glocks don't jam. Glocks are reliable.

    They're SUPPOSED to be reliable. ALL quality pistols are. So why are we all pretending that Glocks are the only pistols that don't habitually jam up?

    My P7's don't malfunction. Neither do my Browning Hi-Power or my 1911's. When I used to have SiGs and Berettas, they ran reliably, too. And for that matter, so do my S&W revolvers.

    It's not all that uncommon to have modern pistols function reliably. Glocks are certainly reliable but they don't have a lock on that market.

  14. Berettas... ugh. Carried one all through my Kosovo deployment! What a POS!

  15. Anonymous10:13 AM

    The P7...

    You mean the combat stapler right? ;-)

  16. LMAO @ Combat Stapler!