When the Glock pistol was introduced, like many, I was skeptical of the polymer-framed pistol. I had positive experiences with the HK P9S 9mm and did not regard polymer as cheap—far from it. The HK was an extraordinary pistol. Rigorous testing and experience removed skepticism.The Glock was a reliable, affordable, and durable service pistol chambered for the popular 9mm Luger cartridge.
Many officers asked for a self-loading pistol, but chiefs and administrators were reluctant to issue or approve anything other than the .38 caliber revolver. One chief famously told the troops, ‘When they make a double action only self loader, I will approve it.’ SIG and Beretta made inroads into the police market with excellent double action first shot pistols. Training and transition time was demanding if properly done.
Requests for a DAO self-loader were made to American-based manufacturers, but they did not respond. As such, they abrogated the American police market to Europeans. No American competitor of the day was comparable in quality, accuracy, and reliability to the SIG. But the SIG demanded that officers learn to load, decock, fire the first-shot in double action, and then transition to single-action fire. The Beretta added the complication of a slide mounted safety. When Glock introduced the DAO pistol the manual of arms was load, holster, draw, fire!
I evaluated the first Glock 9mm at the insistence of my Chief and found the piece good. It was interesting and useful. Combat accuracy as opposed to precision shooting was good. I would have preferred a manual safety, but the Glock was a superior service pistol to any American self-loader or revolver—provided it was loaded with the +P+ 9mm loading. I continued to carry my 1911 .45.
Meanwhile, largely due to the adoption of the self-loader, many agencies had eliminated 50-yard qualifications. It may surprise many readers but at the time 6 to 12 rounds of qualification in a 60-round course involved firing from a braced position at 50 yards. These officers would not be helpless if under fire at long range.
Target sighted Smith and Wesson revolvers were capable to putting 6 shots into a 4-inch group at this distance. In comparison, a friend took a Smith and Wesson Model 59 9mm to a regional qualification for instructors. He felt loading time would be much less compared to his Model 19 .357 Magnum. Bill nearly failed the course at 25 yards.
We fired the M59 from the bench rest at 25 yards and found it good for 8 inches. Such was the state of police service handguns. Bill later specified the SIG P226 for agency use at a medium-sized department. With the issue Federal Hydra Shock, this pistol would group 5-shots into 1.5-2.2 inches at 25 yards.
When the Glock M22 .40 was introduced, I was interested. The first pistols had accuracy problems, but not all of them, and the problems have been alleviated. My personal M22 was fitted with Novak steel sights and a Bar Sto barrel. The blocky Glock sights were great for close range but limited a shooter at 25 yards. With the Bar Sto barrel and good sights, I now had a 50-yard gun.
The .40 began to post good results in shootings across the country. The 9mm cartridge gave mixed results, most poor, in police service. Every few years someone with less real experience than opinion tells us the 9mm’s problems have been solved. The larger caliber will always work better.
As time passed, I found a significant number of students arriving at class with Glock pistols. It was mandatory that I be able to use the pistol well and demonstrate. As such, I have kept a Glock 19 or Glock 23 on hand for training. I have come to prefer the Glock 22 for all around use for many reasons.
|Blazer 180-grain FMJ||2.8 inches|
|Fiocchi 165-grain JHP||2.65 inches|
|Fiocchi 170-grain MAJOR||2.25 inches|
|Hornady 155-grain XTP||2.5 inches|
|Winchester 180-grain PDX||2.75 inches|
Glock has progressed from the first Glock to the Generation 4. Primary improvements are in the sights, recoil rod, and grip frame. The action is the same. Most Glock triggers are set at 5.5 pounds—ideal for personal defense. Aftermarket disconnects and trigger parts are for competition use only. Anyone fielding a pistol with an aftermarket trigger is asking for legal complications. If you can sprint 100 yards at full steam and then control that light trigger, you are a good man. If not keep the factory trigger.
Over the years there have been ill advised even ridiculous attempts to control recoil by porting the barrel or adding compensators. Among a very few that actually work well are the Glock M22c or compensated versions. The modest ports offer a degree of decreased recoil. The hotter the load the better the compensator works, robbing the load of a modest 15-30 fps. The 22C is no longer in production. The 22c came into my hands simply because it was on sale. I would be as well served with an M22 but I like my pistol very much.
An addition that is mandatory, in my opinion, for any Glock is night sights. This pistol is equipped with factory steel night sights. The daylight sight picture is better, and the 24-hour utility of the piece improved. I have also had the grip frame modified to fit my average-size hand better. Among the top-rated gunsmiths in the world are those at Robar, Inc, and they will modify your Glock if you desire.
The pistol is useful for concealed carry, IDPA, IPSC, and home defense, even for defense against wild animals. I have taken deer with the .40 S&W, and at 25 yards it was four hooves in the air with the Federal 180-grain Hydra Shock.
The Glock M22 has proven accurate with a variety of loads. If I were shooting an IPSC match, I would load the Fiocchi 170-grain MAJOR. As the name implies this load gives a MAJOR rating without excess pressure and has proven very accurate. Fiocchi’s 165-grain JHP has proven match grade accurate and is among the better choices for home defense.
Loads that have proven accurate in the Glock M22 include the Winchester PDX 180-grain JHP at 980 fps. This load exhibits little muzzle flash, usually a warm glow even in dim light conditions. The Hornady 155-grain XTP breaks 1100 fps from the Glock M22c. The balance of penetration and expansion is good and this load shoots flat to 50 yards. There are more expensive handguns, but none more reliable than the Glock M22. The .40 caliber cartridge hits hard. The M22 is a winner on all counts.
What is your favorite Glock? Share your Glock story in the comment section.