I’ve always loved the 1911. The classic style, combined with its solid metal frame and hefty .45 caliber rounds made it the gun I aspired to own as a young Marine carrying a Beretta M9 as my sidearm. Then, while visiting my brother in Georgia, I got the chance to fire a 1911 and found the gun to be a perfect match for my shooting style, as I was able to manage a fairly small shot group from 25 yards the first time I laid my hands on the weapon. Enamored, but on a budget, I purchased a Metro Arms American Classic 1911, one of the countless Colt clones on the market and one of the less expensive 1911 models a guy can get his hands on.

For the low price of about $500, I had my very own 1911, and although it was plagued by misfeeds early on, I was able to remedy the issue for just a few more bucks by ditching the weak magazine that came with the weapon for a $20 Wilson Combat mag that hasn’t let me down yet. All in, I had spent $520 on my 1911 that kept pace with my brother’s Sig Sauer 1911 that priced in at twice as much. The gun is reliable, easy to clean (at least it seems that way now), and has held up to the abuse of being my everyday carry for some time.

So why the hell would I buy a Glock?

Although the debate between Glocks and 1911s will likely continue for years to come, I’ve never understood the value in choosing a camp and swearing by it. I grew up around the automotive racing world, with both my father and my older brother serving as professional drivers at one time or another. Racing was always a potential career path for me, though not behind the wheel. Over the years, I’ve been a pit mechanic, a parts-slinger, a marketing and PR consultant, and even an HR guy for racing companies, and regardless of whether you’re drag racing, road racing, or go-cart racing, you can’t spend a day near a race track without hearing two old coots start yelling at each other about Fords and Chevys.

I think Corvettes and Mustangs are both pretty cool, so why can’t I like both Glocks and 1911s?

So while I wandered around my local gun store, shopping for things I didn’t need, I sparked up a conversation with the owner about our respective EDC firearms. He was about my size, and when I mentioned my 1911’s tendency to chafe my side, he recommended I consider making the switch to a Glock. After a bit of discussion, I made the impulse decision to just find out for myself—and I dropped another $520 on the table for a new Glock 19.

Immediately, I can say that the Glock has a significantly smaller footprint for concealed-carry purposes than my five inch-barreled 1911—but that goes without saying, as the G19 is intended to be a smaller alternative to the full-framed Glock 17. More important, in my assessment, is the relative weight. On my hip, the Glock feels considerably lighter, not pulling at my belt or making my pants sag in the slightest.

Left: Glock 19 offers slightly superior conceal-ability. Right: 1911 tends to bunch fabric, limiting mobility if you want to keep the weapon concealed.

At six feet tall and just shy of 250 pounds, I’m on the bigger side, and as such, I didn’t have a ton of trouble effectively concealing the 1911, but the Glock is near invisible on my hip by comparison. Although the size plays a significant role in that comparison, the smooth edges of the pistol, compared to the classic styling of the 1911, seem to make the Glock hide a bit better when bending over or squatting down. Also, the 1911 tends to snag T-shirt fabric, so tight T-shirts tend to bunch around the weapon.