Glock ‘Safe-Action’ pistols are arguably one of the most prolific pistols in use today by military and law enforcement organizations around the world as well as private citizens. The reasons are many and while this article is not intended to be a review of the pistol, I will list a few that are particularly noteworthy:
- Functionality – A pistol should be designed to shoot, meaning the grip angle, trigger pull and reach as well as the manipulations should be simple to use, beneficial to the operation, suitable to most shooters and focus in gross motor movements. In this area, the Glock shines – the grip angle forces a natural pointing action of the wrist which tightens the wrist ligaments and tendons which help with stability and recoil; the manipulations are simple and identical across all Glock models – so whether you are carrying a subcompact 42 or full size competition 34, the functions are of the same style and location.
- Reliability – It is here that the Glock not only shines but is defined. The Glock pistol is known for its reliability, consistency and dependability.
- Customizing/Maintenance – Glock again shines over it competition in this category as you can easily see for yourself if you Google “Glock parts”. You will undoubtedly find more suppliers and custom shops than you care to scroll through. Additionally, a Glock armorer’s course is the easiest, most straight forward course on a weapon system that I have ever experienced. In fact, a YouTube video, punch tool and basic cleaning gear is just about all you will need to completely disassemble and maintain a Glock.
As for upgrades and customizing, I am a recovering 12 stepper when it comes to gear and weapons, admittedly. However, I have compiled a list of modest and inexpensive yet effective modifications to your Glock pistol should you choose to make your Glock a little more personal.
A side note: any recommendations I make are based on my personal experiences and preferences. In no way am I conveying that other modifications are wrong and if you do not modify your pistol that you too are wrong. I am simply discussing possible modifications and upgrades, that is all. I am a firm believer that what you do with any piece of gear designed to save your life or that of another should be your decision and your decision alone.
*Check with your employer or regulatory authority prior to altering your pistol (especially your trigger) in any way. It is also highly recommended to seek professional assistance when making any permanent modification.
Here are some upgrades and do-it-yourself modifications:
- Sights – Arguably the most effective modification to a stock pistol. Changing the sights allows you to select what works for you as an individual, and that is how your purchase should be researched – what do your eyes prefer to sight in on a target? A large front dot and slotted rear? Or traditional posts? Or perhaps Night sights? Personally, I prefer night sights or at least a high-vis front sight and I would recommend Cap sights from Meprolight or night sights from Trijicon, or Zev fiber optic sights (Only the front sight is fiber optic). I highly recommend you poll your friends and shoot their pistol first (or at least experience them) if they have sights you are considering to put on your pistol.
- Mag/Slide Release – These upgrades are listed because they will help you manipulate the pistol. Do I recommend them both? The answer is sometimes yes and sometimes no. These items are recommended if you find yourself having trouble with the stock setup. For example, if you can reliably eject a magazine without altering your grip then I would not recommend the extended type. However if you cannot reliably stop or release the slide with the stock setup than I would recommend the extended. Additionally, if the extended slide stop causes you to unintentionally stop or hold open the slide on the last round, then it is not recommended just as if the extended mag release causes unintentional ejection. Personally, I have the extended slide release lever (Vickers Tactical version) and the stock mag release.
- Trigger – If there is another modification that will change the way you shoot as much as sights do, it is the trigger. Now with a Glock there are many different variations, styles and functions. I would recommend a modest alteration or buy a drop in kit as personally modifying a trigger is not a good idea, in my opinion. A drop in Ghost connector will help tremendously for a $20 investment, or you can go all the way up to a full drop in kit from GlockTriggers.com which has many options, or purchase a custom trigger from Zev, GlockWorx, Agency Arms or Salient Arms.
- Stippling/Grinding – This modification can alter grip angle, reduce or eliminate finger grooves and can add an increased friction to the grip surface. There are many ways to do this yourself with a sand paper-wrapped wooden dowel or a rotary tool and for stippling you can use a soldering point/blade/wedge or you can ship your frame to a custom shop. With this modification, start modestly as you can always add more stippling or remove more material but the opposite isn’t so easy.
The picture above is one of the first Glocks I ever worked on or modified.
- CAP sights from Meprolight, Vickers slide release.
- The underside of the trigger guard is “double under-cut” which allows my middle finger of my firing hand and the middle finger of my support hand to be elevated slightly, giving a closer grip angle to the bore axis.
- The front of the takedown levers has been grooved at an angle – this modification allows for downward pressure from my support thumb, which aids in recoil control/muzzle flip and also provides an index for my trigger finger when off the trigger.
- The inside of the mag well has been slightly angled and smoothened to serve as a better funnel.
Joseph M. LaSorsa, CPP® is currently employed as a senior partner managing and conducting: Protective Operations Training Courses, Executive Protection & Bodyguard Services, Risk Management Consultations & Seminars, Workplace Violence Prevention Seminars & Intervention Services, Security Consultations & Seminars, Private Investigations and Technical Surveillance Counter-Measures with LaSorsa & Associates – an International Protection, Investigations & Consulting Firm.