Gray-haired man with GLOCK 19 pistol in ready position.

When I got this assignment, I thought it fit me to a T. I have been lucky to fall into the orbit of a visionary editor who has asked me to stretch my limits in writing. This article challenged me on several counts. I have owned a number of GLOCK 19 handguns. I have traded them, and sometimes the trade was up and sometimes down. I should have kept the first one. I have carried the pistol professionally and fired it in any number of test programs.

The GLOCK 19 has proven free of irritating malfunctions of any type. The pistol, like all handguns, has both fans and detractors. I prefer the educated comments of those who use the handgun extensively. I ask myself what the GLOCK 19 has to offer that the SIG P228, Beretta 92C or the HK P7M8 does not. I have experience with the Smith and Wesson M&P compact and the SPRINGFIELD ARMORY M1A STANDARD as well.

Handguns must meet a certain baseline before getting into personal preference in operating mechanisms, sights and grip texture. This baseline is reliability. And this doesn’t mean a few hundred rounds by a writer; it means institutional testing and long service. SIG, Beretta, GLOCK, and H&K all have this type of reputation.

The GLOCK 19 isn’t a target gun or a hunter. It is chosen for personal defense. After 23 years of police work, I have a different worldview and a different understanding of criminal enterprise. I have ignored anecdotal comments, forays into self-promotion and false sentimentality. The less generous might insert buffalo chips at this point.

These are rigorous standards met by police reports among other important documents. When you are facing an adversary, it isn’t a Joe like you who has had a bad day. They do not usually need to be shot. The person attacking you with deadly intent is an angry and aggressive psychopath with no sense of the moral dimension of his crime. Their internal logic is different from yours.

Those thwarted in some criminal enterprise for profit in their use may recognize the error of their ways and stop. Those driven by compulsion cannot stop. You need a good tool to save your save and one that works every time. And the GLOCK 19 is a good choice because it will not fail as far as reliability goes.

However, is it the best choice for personal defense for you? Let’s take a hard look.

Functional appearanceUgly
Reasonably easy to controlOnly 9mm
Safety featuresNo trigger safety
Has only one trigger action to learn compared to double-action typesTrigger is difficult to learn
 May be concealed with proper leather selection;

it is the comfort level that is affected by the size of the gun
 Is not compact enough for concealed carry

At this point, I need to make something clear: A full size GLOCK 17 9mm may be concealed. So may the smaller GLOCK 26. However, somewhere there is a compromise level. The GLOCK 19 isn’t significantly more difficult to fire well and control than the larger GLOCK 17.

Is this also true of the Mini GLOCK? Probably not. The difference in concealing the smaller guns is comfort.

Fine for close-range workSights limit long-range accuracy (order night sights or replacement sights)
Light for the size and caliberDifficult to control

Control should be addressed by proper technique. The later model GLOCK pistols feature an improved frame design that aids control. Perhaps you should avoid +P loads.

Attractively cubistSquare and blocky
Affordable compared to other service pistolsMore expensive than cheap guns

Like all good handguns, the GLOCK 19 is a compromise of sorts and has its pros and cons. The basic engineering of the safe-action trigger and polymer frame cannot be changed. The sights can be changed. The Gen 4 has changeable grip inserts. If you do not like the caliber, then there are other models available.

In the end a template for comparing all handguns should be considered. The GLOCK 19 is seldom a bad choice. It is a well made and reliable handgun worth its price. If the cons do not appeal to you then there are other equally reliable handguns. Read about them here and make your choice.

Packing the GLOCK 19

The Tagua 4-in-1 Holster  is a very versatile holster, featuring a well-designed combination of belt slots that allow crossdraw, small of back, strong side or inside-the-waistband (IWB) carry.  Frankly it is worth the price to use four different ways to discover which choice is really best for your body type! The crossdraw when driving and the IWB under a sport shirt in the summer makes sense.

Defense Loads

One good choice for a defense load is the  Winchester PDX 124-grain +P.

Winchesters’ bonded core 9mm load is controllable and powerful. The load is rated at 1,200 fps and, in an unusual happenstance, clocks 1198 fps from the GLOCK 19, almost exactly factory specification.

Velocity is a little less in the SIG P228 and a little more in the Beretta 92C. This load exhibits good accuracy and an excellent balance of expansion and penetration.

Do you have a GLOCK 19 in your arsenal? We would love to hear about your experiences so do share with us in the comments section.

Glock 26 vs 19. Reading Between The Nines
Some people accept nothing other than a 9x19mm Glock, and if you're going to carry one on the daily, that inevitably leads to deciding between the Glock 19 vs. 26. Both of these pistols are wildly popular among police officers and civilian carriers. Take a peek in basically any gun store, and they'll have both of them behind the counter.

But which to get?

Both guns are solid choices, but each gun has a couple of minor drawbacks that will make one a better choice for some people. It's like getting a car; plenty of people like pickup trucks, but it's not a very good choice if you live in an urban environment. Likewise, a Mini Cooper probably isn't the best choice if you live out in the sticks.

So really, it comes down to what's best for you. But what is going to make one better than the other? We're going to find out.

Glock 19: The Goldilocks Gun
The Glock 19 is more or less a "Goldilocks" gun. It's big enough to hang with the full-size guns in terms of accuracy and performance. It holds 15+1 of 9mm and will even run 9mm +P, which is on par with most service pistols or close enough that it makes little difference. It will even accept Glock 17 magazines for an additional two rounds of capacity if desired.

However, it's also small enough for shooters with smaller hands to use well, unlike many of the classic service pistols like the Beretta 92, Sig Sauer P226, CZ 75 or a 1911 which can be bigger than some people are willing to deal with.

The 19 is also small enough for most people to conceal fairly easily. Granted, it's also a tad big compared to other compacts.

The Glock 19 has a 4-inch barrel, with an overall length of 7.36 inches. The gun is 5 inches tall, and is 1.18 inches wide at the slide. Unloaded, it weighs 23.65 ounces but only goes up to 30 ounces once loaded. Trigger pull is commonly held to be 5.5 pounds, though that can vary a bit per each individual gun you find in stores.

Everything you need, nothing you don't, and in an easy to use, easy to learn, reliable and accurate package. Aftermarket support is ridiculous and they don't even cost all that much; you can pick one up for $450 to $600, depending on the store and circumstances, and less on the used market.

What About The Glock 19x 9mm?
Glock 19X Review

The Glock 19X is a pistol that was designed to fill the needs of both military and law enforcement personnel. It is a hybrid of the Glock 17 and the Glock 19, two of the most popular Glock models.

The Glock 19X is a striker-fired, 9mm pistol that has a 4.6-inch barrel and a capacity of 17 rounds. It also has a reversible magazine release and a reversible grip to allow it to be used by both left- and right-handed shooters. The Glock 19X ships with two magazines, one with a 17-round capacity and the other with a 10-round capacity.

The Glock 19X has been praised for its accuracy, reliability, and ergonomics. It has also been criticized for its high price tag. So, if you're looking for a 19 with a few extra rounds, go with the 19x.

Glock 19 Concealed Carry
There are a number of benefits to carrying a Glock 19 concealed. One of the most obvious benefits is that you are able to carry the weapon with you wherever you go, which provides you with a sense of safety and security. The Glock 19 is easy to use and is a very reliable weapon, which means that you can count on it to perform when you need it most.

Additionally, a Glock 19 is a very compact weapon, which makes it easy to conceal. This means that you can carry it with you without it being visible, which can help to keep you safe in a number of situations.

What else could a person actually want? Well, a smaller gun that's easier to conceal, which brings us to:

The Glock 26: Portable, Potent and Packable
The Glock 26 was conceived as a small handgun for the concealed carry market and as a backup gun for law enforcement, and it has been a very popular pistol for that application since it was released back in the mid 90s.

As far as subcompacts go, the Glock 26 has a lot going on for it. It's compact enough to be easily carried and concealed. However, it's big enough to avoid the usual pitfalls of pocket guns. The G26 has sufficient barrel length to get some performance out of ammunition and to preserve accuracy.

It's slim, but also has a decent capacity; it holds more rounds than some full-size guns (Sig P220, 1911, etc.) so you can actually carry a decent supply more info of bullets.

It's also compatible with Glock 19 and Glock 17 magazines, so you can increase the capacity by swapping magazines. In fact, a lot of people carry a 26, but use a G19 magazine with a grip sleeve.

The "Baby Glock" has a 3.4-inch barrel, standing 6.4 inches long and 4.17 inches tall. It's the same width as the 19, and holds 12+1 of 9x19mm. It weighs 21.17 ounces unloaded, but a scant 26.12 ounces once it is. Trigger pull remains roughly 5.5 pounds.

Just like the 19, aftermarket support is ridiculous. You'll find it in basically every gun store. Thousands of people carry them everyday, either as a primary carry gun or as a backup. However, the specs of each gun...don't matter all that much, as they really only give you part of the story.

What does matter?

What matters is what makes a gun good for YOU. How, then, is a person supposed to narrow the Glock 19 vs 26 decision down?

Deciding Between Glock 19 vs Glock 26: What You Need From A Carry Gun
Truth be told, no matter which gun you pick between the Glock 19 vs Glock 26, you're getting a solid firearm. Both are accurate, reliable, and shoot very well. Granted, neither is a tack drivin' sniper pistol with a custom shop trigger. Glocks are merely hard working guns that will go "bang" when you need them to and will generally hit what you aim them at.

Everything you need, nothing you don't...but you'll probably find one is better for you than the other.

The Glock 19 occupies a fantastic middle ground between a service pistol and a carry pistol. They're compact enough for most people to carry every day, but some people find them too big to conceal well without layers or may find them uncomfortable to carry. Ultimately, if you can't easily or comfortably carry a pistol, you're going to find excuses to not carry it which a few people ahve done with their Glock 19.

The Glock 26, on the other hand, is small enough for just about anyone to conceal and carry it every day. With the stock magazines, you do lose a bit in terms of capacity but 12+1 is fine for an EDC gun...though you could carry with a Glock 19 magazine with a grip sleeve.

However, the 26 also has a fairly short grip. A lot of people find they can only get two or three fingers on the pistol, which makes shooting it a little awkward. Also, shorter barrels bring with them more muzzle rise. While the muzzle rise of a compact 9mm is much less than that of a .45 and is laughable compared to that of, say, a .44 Magnum, a smaller gun in 9mm can still be a bit lively.

Granted, very few people are going to have issues with a Glock 26, though shooting +P may snap a bit, but some shooters might find it a bit livelier than they want. For the extremely recoil sensitive, the 19 will be the easier pistol to shoot.

In short, some people find the Glock 19 a touch too big and some people find the Glock 26 a tad too small (without modification) and might not enjoy or otherwise shoot a subcompact 9mm as well as they might with a larger gun.

The best thing to do is to handle both and shoot both. Get to a gun store or range that rents guns out for testing purposes. Shoot both, get a feel for them. You'll get an idea for which one you'll be most confident with, which will be the one to acquire. But keep in mind...

Glocks Aren't Perfect.
Glock pistols are some of the most reliable on the market, but they are not perfect. One issue that some shooters have experienced with Glocks is that the polymer frames can become brittle over time and may crack or shatter. Additionally, some shooters have noted that the striker-fired design of Glocks can be a little bit harder to master than other types of pistols.

Despite these few flaws, Glock pistols are still some of the most popular and trusted firearms on the market. Millions of law enforcement and civilian shooters trust their lives to Glocks every day, and for good reason – Glock pistols are incredibly reliable and easy to use.

Use our free 8" x 11" target when you head on out to the range! We will continuously be adding new target options to our lineup. Check out our complete free printable shooting targets page to see the full selection as they start rolling in.