We are back out here for a little bit of table talk, and the subject is Glock modifications. Now, straight up, all three of us were old die-hard 1911 guys and out of necessity and popularity, we had to adapt to shooting the Glock. We would all agree the guns we shoot the most now in classes are Glocks. That’s a direct by-product of how popular they are worldwide. Along the way we’ve learned some modifications that we prefer and keep in mind these are generally real world modifications that you would use for duty or service use. they are not necessarily Epsink, or IDPA, or Gameboy modifications. Now they’re some things that have carried over, and we’re going to talk about that, but a lot of this stuff, is stuff you would use on a day to day basis, on a gun you’re going to stake your life with. Now Ken, if you wouldn’t mind, kick off the guns you have in the MODs and then we’ll just take it from there.
Okay, the gun I probably carry the most in the Glock Line, I always have it with all the time, is the Glock 19. We know that while personally I like the Glock 17 to shoot, the reality is the Glock 19 in many ways is the best gun they make. It’s a compact readily concealable gun, still holds 15 rounds, and on this one I’ve obviously the plastic sights that come from Glock are an absolute farce.
Yes, they’re a joke, I tell people, they just fill the slot until you get good sights. There are a variety of sights on the market that are really good. Some of the common ones we see a lot of are Heinies. I happen to have on this one, I happen to have the Warren Tactical Sight. Another brand that’s real popular, of course, is the Novak Sight.
Another sight that I’ve been using a lot and I really like are the AmeriGlo sights, by the way for the money, they’re really a good buy. I have improved sights; I’ve got tritium front sight inserts. I’m not for tritium in the rear. This particular gun has been upgraded, on thing from a grip standpoint, it has a textured surface and you and I are both good buddies with Dave Bowie, does an excellent job of texturing the grip so it doesn’t slip or slide.
This one particular gun I carry a lot has a Crimson Trace Laser unit on it. I’m convinced that it has real application in the real world. I have that night fighting capability backup of a laser. The other thing this gun has on it is a Vickers, one of the mag catchers you’ve designed. It has a bit of an extension to it. Not extended like a competition mag catcher, you can easier bump and drop the mag. Ones that’s just a little easier reach, particularly if you have a smaller hand.
For me, I have a fairly big hand and when I shoot a Glock, the slide comes back and cuts grooves in my hand. I’ve actually got scars on each side of the web of my hand from shooting a Glock.
A buddy of ours, Frank Royce, sharp guy, he came up with a product called the Grip Force Adapter. Basically, it’s a unit that mounts on the rear of the frame. That gives you and extended, if you will, like a beaver-tail protection. What it does for me, now when I grip and shoot the Glock, I don’t get ate up anymore, totally fixed the problem. The other plus to it is, for a lot of people, when they grab a Glock, the grip angle, end up pointing the gun a little high. It fills in enough area; it actually gives you about the same grip angle as the 1911. For me, as an old 1911 shooter, when I grab the gun it presents or points like a 1911. It has a dual advantage. I’ll tell you what, I find for a lot of people this thing is a Godsend.
Dave I know you’re a fan of it.
Take us through your Glock.
Okay on my G17, it’s a Gen 4, I have the AmeriGlo Hackathorn Sight. Extremely regulated to point any point impact. I have a Guardian Trigger, made by Jeff Wilson at Glocktriggers.com. Just short of a competition grade trigger, what it gives you is a little bit of a wall before it breaks. Very nice to you, once you get into the trigger, if circumstances change and you have to get back out of the trigger, it’s very easy to accomplish.
Of course, I have the Vicker’s mag button.
The new one from Gen 4?
For the gen 4, and the best aspect of the gen 4 is you can reverse the mag button.
There is a lot of things you like, I noticed that on your Beretta
All of my guns, I have set up for trigger finger activation of the mag release button. I’m also running a Roger’s Grip Adapter. It’s basically a mag well, that’s the dual function of it, but its actual purpose it to allow a higher purchase on the Glock. Which in conjunction with the Grip Force Adapter provides for a very stable grip.
If we’d have to point to one thing here, that is more competition oriented than anything it would definitely be this mag well, without a doubt.
Very common on Glocks, and you see them somewhat on duty guns. It’s not that unusual.
The radius, underneath the trigger guard, take it a little higher, I also scalloped out the inside of the trigger guard a little bit. Just to give myself a — On a standard frame the trigger being the length that it is, I would have a tendency to get pinched and build up a callus.
That rolls into one of the things I like and this is one of my guns, now this happens to be a first gen Glock it did not have the finger grooves, but one of the things I had Bowie do when he customizes my guns is take the finger grooves off. Because I’m not a fan of the finger grooves and like you said, the finger grooves are as long as they fit your fingers, when they don’t it’s a problem.
Probably one of the single biggest complaints I hear from Glock users are they would like to see the finger grooves go away. They don’t really to — they try to make fit the average hand, but there is no average hand.
Absolutely and you see the texturing, like Bowie does, and then one of the things Glock did do address, the fact that the guns can get a little bit slick like in the gen 3 format with sweaty hands is they’ve done this texturing on the gen 4.
Yes, and the texturing is definitely an improvement from a grip standard. When your hands are sweaty, wet, muddy, or most importantly bloody, blood’s like having grease or oil on your hands. The gun can be hard to hold on to, so the adhesive grip surface is an advantage in fighting.
Now, another thing you need to take into consideration, I’m generally a fan of it, these don’t have it, my couple guns don’t have it yet, because I’m waiting for them to show up, is a grip plug.
It’s real easy, with that little kind of corner on the back, to bind up on the mag thing. The grip insert plug helps basically align the magazines and set it in the pistol, so it’s an advantage. The real plus, and people don’t understand this, you can take a Glock pistol, and we can pick up some sand off the ground, dribble it down in there and it channels that hole and will let it got right into the action and it will shut the gun down.
Shut the gun down, hence why the grip plug is such a plus. One thing we all have stock barrels in here.
From our experience, that these guns are adequately accurate, the way they come out of the box, so I generally don’t want to match barrel mine. If I have any kind of trigger, tuning done personally it’s pretty minor. I’ve kind of conditioned myself to use the guns more or less out of the box. They’re exceptions to that, but overall you can take this gun and do some stuff to the outside, like the sights, the texturing, and whatnot. Some of the modifications like my stuff from TangoDown and Grip Force Adapter and have a real serviceable tool and what’s interesting is that urge to customize and make the handgun your own. That we use to see in the 1911s has transferred over now to this gun.
Absolutely, you know, the interesting thing about it is, we’re talking about trigger, you know, Glock offers everything from a 3 1/2 pound connector which basically makes a 1 1/2 pound trigger. They have the standard when it comes to a gun, which is about 5 1/2. They offer the 8 pound Murat triggers and then the 12 Murat Plus trigger. For most people the 5-pound connector, 5 1/2 pound connector with shooting, it averages about 5 pounds, most people can shoot them pretty well.
Glock has come out with a new connector they call the DOT connector for the gen 4 guns and actually that in my opinion gives you a nice crisp but decent trigger. It’s probably the best one I find.
One thing we all agree in, you want to keep factory springs and the striker spring and the recoil spring. On top of that, you have to clean and lubricate the guns. These guns have kind of got a little built around them. You never have to clean them or lubricate them and that is simply untrue. Now, they’re very tolerant to running dirty and somewhat dry, but you don’t want to run them that way. Ken you have a pretty good line on that.
Yes, I just tell people, you know you don’t have to take a bath very often either; you can go for months without taking a bath. You don’t want to be around people like that. In my theory, if you have somebody that’s backing you up, a brother officer, a teammate, a family member, whoever, you want the person who has your life at stake carrying a gun that’s not cleaned or lubricated?
No, that’s a no go.
It’s just stupid.
Couple of things that are common sense things as far as we see them, you want to use factory OEM magazines. You do not want to use any aftermarket` Korean mags or whatever the case may be. Factory OEM mags and we all religiously download them by one, so you can set them with the slide fold. Now when you put a light on something like a Glock 40, now when that frame flexes, during recoil it can change the dynamics of how the gun runs and you can run into reliability issues. You make sure that you want to sort out the ammo your using and the light you’re using, really in all of them, particularly the ones in 40 cal.
Yes, doesn’t seem to be a big issue with the 9 mm, but with the 40 has have got a time a bad track record of that, and what happens when that frame flexes up it hits the slide going forward, you end up with failed repeat issues.
There is a combination; I mean I know people who’ve worked around it. Ammo’s a factor in there which has slide velocity factors involved there, so you have to sort that out before you stake your life on one.
Dave, as we wrap this up, if you’re going to have a Glock, what are some of the absolute things you have to sort out, the modifications you want to do when you use the gun?
Yes, the primary modification. The first thing is getting rid of the factory plastic sights, and get a quality set of sights on the gun. That was the one thing that I would do, that would be it.
I agree, 100 percent.
How about you Larry, what would be your pic?
I’m with Dave, you have to have good sights on there. I’m of course at the point, like all of us, I want something on the front sight that I can see. That’s why we’re generally going with the AmeriGlo or the Trijicon HDs or something that jumps out on you in the front sight.
Not so much on the rear sight with the tridium and whatnot. I want to have something on the front sight I can see. Beyond that, I’m obviously very partial as you’d expect to my modifications, my Glock parts from Tango Down, the mag caps, the slide release, and now the base plate, and as a general rule if I go beyond that, I going to put a grip plug in it and I’m going to have Bowie texture it. I generally run my guns with a standard trigger and a standard barrel.
You know, one thing that I can tell you Larry and I’ve seen over the years I’ve know you for what, the last 25 years or so, you’re one of the few people I know that incredibly trigger tolerant. You can shoot about any trigger and well I envy that. I on the other hand like a trigger pull that’s a little bit more refined. That’s just the way it is, I shoot better with one. For example, I like a 4 1/2 pound connector in the gun or the new DOT connector, but I’m with you, we all agree. Get rid of these factory plastic sights, those things are hideous.
I like, for example, a sight — Well this is the new Dave Spalding the AmeriGlo and boy if Ray Charles could see that one, that’s a great sight. Because I have a big hand, I find that grip force adapter to be almost a necessity. I can shoot a gun without it, but you know I get tired of those grooves in my hand, so I really like this added.
The thing about the mag catch is quite honestly, I have again, I can reach the mag catch because my hands so big. I probably could like without an enlarged mag catch, I like it, but I can live without it. The slide lock, you, Dave, and I as well, all are used to 1911, where we’re accustomed to putting the magazine, we set it and our thumb is right there, we’re used to hitting the slide lock and charging the gun. We’re used to dropping it that way. If that’s your technique, your new slide lock is a real plus.
On the other hand if you’re one of those people who used to when you set the magazine, reaching up and basically stroking the slide to load it with a power stroke, you know what, it probably is not that big of a deal. You have to address the gun on the basis of what you need or what your normal package requires. Of course, some type of grip texturing is a plus. In the old days, everybody used skateboard tape. Today with the new gen 4s, it’s kind of taken care of. Or, let’s face it, I tell people everywhere in America, they’re people that do about three things, there is some guy with a sheet of Kydex cooking holsters in his oven in the kitchen. There’s probably somebody with a wood burning kit testing Glock or polymer frames, and then let’s face it, almost every community in American has some guy putting AR15s together.
You are absolutely right. The one thing as we do an overview, a lot of this stuff you can adapt to different techniques and you can adapt to different ways you’re using the gun. For instance, you used to have these sights where you can rack it if you have too, or now with the new base pad, in this case, I can pull it out on the edge of my holster if I have to and get it out.
Also, this works great, like you said the slide release for the 1911 guys that release it with their thumbs, if you’re a guy that sling shots, the one plus it has is if you have to lock the slide to the rear, for a malfunction or whatever the case may be, it helps for that. You pick and choose the modifications. You see we don’t have a lot of trick stuff here, a lot of stuff that’s way out in left field. A lot of real gamey stuff, this is all stuff that we’ve been using for a period of time that works and works well.
You know you notice a couple of guns here, three of them have extended magazines. This is the Glock one, this is called the +2, a lot of people like them because you can increase your capacity to two rounds, but remember you are still going to download one. Okay, not a bad piece of kit.
There’s another brand of extension or base plate that I have been using for years and I’ve noticed Dave’s has one on his, is the Arredondo base plate, and they actually make it for the Glock too. One that holds a 9 mm, hold three rounds, and bout the stay — Believe me, I’ve used these base plates for travels all over the world. They work, they don’t come apart, they work really well, so for example the +3 on a Glock 17 it allows me 20 rounds. I can basically load 20 rounds in the gun, put a 20 round mag in a rack it and now I have 19, in the magazine and one in the gun and man I’m pretty good to go.
If I was going to use any of the aftermarket base plates, the Arredondo has proven to me to be a really good product. Your right, in a nutshell, for the most popular handgun in the world, you want to address those issues that are important and work for you, not necessarily what your buddy has or what’s written up in a gun magazine. You want something that’s going to meet your needs.
There’s a lot of places on the internet you can research this. One of the very best ones I found is M4Carbine.net. There’s a lot of serious gun guys on there. I occasionally visit that forum and you can get a lot of good information. A lot of guys do a lot of training in there and it kind of sorts a lot of stuff out on guns as well as others.
You know one last thing Larry, and I think we all agree, they make Glocks in a lot of calibers. In my opinion, if you own a Glock pistol and you want the best, you want a 9 mm.
The gun was built to be a 9 mm, they work the best, and they last the longest. I’m not a fan of 40 caliber, I don’t think it’s the cartridge that brings that much more to the plate, say than the 9 mm. The 45s are real popular, I see a lot of people shooting Glock 21s, my opinion most people don’t shoot them as well as they should. I’m a big fan of the 10 mm. Larry knows I like the Glock 20 in 10 mm, incredible gun, incredible cartridge. You know what, it’s not for the average bear, it’s a powerhouse. Most people are best suited with a gun they can shoot very accurately, very quickly and very effectively and for most people that translate to a 9 mm Glock.
As a general rule, the Glock 17 is the gun that’s kind of the baseline. If you can live with a gun that size, that’s probably your choice, if you can’t, you need something a little smaller look at the Glock 19. Between those two guns, generally you will get the job done. They are both great guns and they have excellent track records.
I hope you got something out of this, this is something that we put together real quick and drug out some of our own personal Glocks and we wanted to pass on to you lessons learned that we all had from running these guns.