Have to admit, I keep coming back to my Glock 23 RTF2 as my favorite pistol.
The balance of size, weight, and fire power is perfect.
Reliability has been flawless. Accuracy has been very good. It fits my hand very well thanks to the work I did on the grip. I love it.
What’s your favorite?
If you are a Glock Enthusiast like I am, you probably raised an eyebrow at the Haley Skimmer Trigger from GlockTriggers.com. Here’s Haley talking about it:
Now here’s my take on this… Haley is spot on. This is a great carry trigger system. I’ve read several comments that said that this trigger disables a safety, specifically the firing pin block. This is untrue.
You can see in this picture, a new firing pin block. It’s the small silver plunger near my little grey colored punch. If you are familiar with the inner workings of a Glock Pistol, you will see that it looks just like a factory OEM part. All the parts in the Haley Kit are in fact OEM. So what are you buying?
Well, for one thing you are buying a lot of physical labor and carefully engineered geometry. Everything that moves is highly polished. By hand. Actually, it’s everything that can be polished is polished. I talked to Jeff at GlockTriggers.com about this. “You can’t be doing all these triggers by hand… you gotta be using a tumbler.”
“Well the secret is Don.”
“Dawn, the soap?”
“No, Don, my guy that does the expert polishing by hand.”
Had a great conversation with Jeff. Solid guy. If anyone has any question about anything from GlockTriggers.com, you can contact them. Jeff would be happy to explain anything for you.
Back to the polishing. If it’s metal, it’s polished. The springs are polished. All these parts come in the kit, all are OEM Parts, polished in a way exactly like the stock OEM parts are not. This removes any grit in the action. There is also a change that removes all the take up slack. The result is a much shorter, smoother, and crisper trigger than factory stock. And since these parts are OEM, they are still approved for use by most Police Departments that require only OEM parts.
I know a lot of gunsmiths can do great trigger jobs in Glocks, and you can get great aftermarket parts from our friends at Lone Wolf. But these don’t address that initial take up, and do things like smooth out the lifting of the firing pin block. The Skimmer Trigger is an easy to install trigger upgrade that is safe for EDC use. It was designed for EDC use. There are other triggers that are a bit more oriented to Competition or such… and that’s great. But for a Police Officer or Sheriff’s Deputy, or dedicated concealed carry person… You want the Skimmer Trigger.
Can’t leave well enough alone.
Now, a lot of you guys know that i’m a Tinkerer on some things. Glock Triggers is one thing I like to play around with. I changed some things around to try out. I put in a Ghost 3.5 pound Disconnector, and an 8 pound spring (which actually makes the pull feel lighter). So now this Glock’s trigger is super smooth, with no take up, with a super light and crisp pull. Glock Perfection, Perfected. But I would not recommend this combination to anyone that wasn’t a serious and dedicated Glock shooter.
I normally don’t post emails that I get… namely because I just flat out get too many of them. And I may not answer them all. But I do read all of them.
My wife and I have been batting around the idea of purchasing a pistol or two for a few years now. Considering some recent events, on both national and local scales, we are making that more of a priority. We’ve visited our local Cabellas and a couple of independent shops, test fired a few pistols, and so on, but we’ve still got some lingering uncertainties about exactly what we want. With that in mind, I thought it might be worthwhile to ask someone who knows about guns, and isn’t going to try to swamp us with a load of BS in hopes of making a big sale – i.e. you. (If you already have something like this on your site, I apologize for missing it.)
I understand that “what do you recommend” is a difficult question to answer without some additional info, so here’s what I think you will need to know to provide some useful advice:
1 – The primary purpose will be home/personal defense, and by extension target shooting to build up the relevant skill and confidence that we’ll need to use the weapon properly.
2 – We’re reasonable sure that 9mm is the ammo size we want – Good stopping power with not so much recoil as to be problematic for inexperienced users like ourselves.
3 – We want our weapon(s) to be semi-automatics. I’ve seen enough that I am confident in the mechanical reliability of newer weapons, and we also like their recoil-damping capabilities compared to revolvers.
Here’s what we’ve tried so far, and our impressions:
Beretta 92FS / M9A1 – This is our overall favorite to date. We especially like how the decocking lever and slide release work, although when test-firing, the accuracy seemed a bit random. That could be our lack of skill, or because the specific weapon is a range gun that anyone can use, and has probably had 50,000+ rounds shot through it by now. We found the slide to be a bit stiff when racking in a round. I thought it would have been a bit large for my wife’s hand, but she said she was comfortable with it. I kind of wish the decocking lever were below the slide, but you can’t have everything.
Beretta PX4 – This was the easiest for my wife to use, and she also likes how the slide will not manually operate one a round has been chambered. I don’t care for that as much, as it seems to make removing a dud round without dropping the magazine difficult. The rotating bolt also seems to be more mechanically complex.
CZ 75 – This one seemed to be a knockoff of the Beretta 92 – This one seemed loose, our shots went all over the target, otherwise the differences we noted were mainly superficial.
Kimber Team Match II – This one was a near-immediate reject for us. The slide was so stiff my wife could barely operate it, and while the grip safety is nice, it seemed that when we racked the the slide, the lever safety would come off and we would have to manually re-engage it. Neither of us liked the thought of accidentally firing a round because the safety came off when we didn’t expect it.
I know there are many other manufacturers out there – S&W, Springfield Armory, Sig, Glock, Wathers, HK, etc. etc. etc. Each with various pros and cons, but if we spent the time to handle and test every one, we’d spend months thinking about it and enough money on range fees to have bought one or two pistols.
If there is anything else you need to know in order to make recommendations/suggestions, please drop me an e-mail.
This is how to write an email of this type… he gives me enough background information so that I might be able to give the best possible response. Because normally my response would be “Get a SHOTGUN and a GLOCK.” Because I know those work and without any additional information, that’s the best that could be done. “Oh, for you, I’d get the SIG 226. Absolutely the SIG 226.” Yeah, see, I can’t do that, because I don’t know you and that means everything. How big you are or are not, how you dress, where you go and how you get there etc. And this guy knows that I don’t know him, so he fills in the details.
No, don’t send photos of yourself… Unless you are a Smokin Hot Mamma wearing something small and thin. Other than that, just fill in the information like this guy did.
Now, to answer the question. Let’s get to it!
The Beretta is indeed one of the finest fighting hanguns you can get, and if your wife can handle it, it’s a solid choice. They are extremely accurate and reliable. Your evident problems with accuracy though, means it would require some additional range time with the gun, which is great, but you need to do that before you can carry it. So while I would recommend it… that’s a commitment you would have to make. I’ve sold several to women who say that like the feel and have no problem with the gun’s grip size, but it is large.
Mechanically the CZ and the 92 are about as different as a V-8 and a Wankle Rotary Engine. Both are great, but operate differently. And like the guns, I like both engines. The CZ is a great handgun, one of the best. In fact, the late Jeff Cooper hailed it as one of the most advanced 9mm pistols you could get. I’ve had several and all of them were very good. You can’t go wrong.
The Px4 Storm, is once again, a very different system mechanically and operates just like the 92 from the Operators standpoint when shooting. The upshot to the Storm is that more novice shooters will find the Storms to be more accurate and softer shooting thanks to that rotating action taking some energy from recoil.
For general use as you indicate, I’d say go for the Beretta Storm and get to know it better. The barrel and locking lug should be lubricated with some Slipstream Grease while the rest oiled normally with a good gun oil… such as Slipstream Styx. You can order those off Amazon.com or CrusaderWeaponry.com as you wish.
For some other pistol options, I am of course a fan of the Glocks. A Model 19 would fit the bill perfectly for both of you, if you can both handle a 92, the 19 would be no problem. A Gen 3 19 is the way to go as pulling the slide back for your wife will be no problem. Another pistol to look at if you can find one, is the Caracal F. Much like the Glock in that there is no exterior manual safeties, but the internals are different and the trigger is better, smoother. I really like the Caracal and have shot one rather a lot. I could probably be tempted to trade off something to get one. The Caracal has a grip more like the CZ and much less blocky like a Glock. Butter smooth action too. Take a look.
With these options, it’s just a matter of taste as to which one would best suit your needs.
Everyone knows your guns work… and everyone knows your cheap plastic sights totally suck. Everyone that takes their guns seriously, change those sights as soon as they get the chance.
You guys are bringing out the new 30S model, pretty much to compete with the Springfield XDS… Let me tell you, this is going to come up second place to the XDS. The S is slimmer, which is the biggest complaint about the 26 and 27 which are considered chunky. The S also has the advantage that it’s coming with good sights, right out of the box.
Put some decent sights on your guns!
For the month of November, I carried a Beretta 92FS, and nothing else. Here’s what I relearned and had hammered into my head. You absolutely can carry a Full Sized automatic handgun for Concealed Carry. At first it was unusual because the gun was larger and heavier than what I was used to packing. When Adams Holsters sent me the new Sharkhide Crossroads rig, all the sudden packing that beast of a Beretta became much easier and comfortable for all day carry.
When I say all day carry, what I really mean is “If I’m wearing pants, I’m wearing my gun”. And the Beretta, once I got used to it, was really no problem.
The Crossroads rig is a nice wide pancake style outside of the waistband type holster. This distributes the weight and the profile and really is the most comfortable type of holster you can use. The big 92 just became a part of me for the whole of November.
By week 3, I was very much enjoying the big gun.
There were a couple times when having a big service auto was indeed a greater comfort. There was a moment when I came out of a location late at night and walked across the parking lot to my Bike. A couple large, thuggish looking guys were parked not very far away, leaning on their truck, drinking beer. I make no judgement on their poor choice of domestic horse-piss, or their choice of Brokeback music they were playing. But what concerned me was their increased level of attention to me as I approached. Having the Beretta almost whisper to me “We can take them”, was a great assurance. The other time was when I came home, and through the shadows, a brief flash of red Eye Shine caught me by surprise. In the story I wrote, “UPRISING USA” and “UPRISING UK”, I have evil characters called “Red Eyes” which are demonically possessed zombies. And here at Ogre Ranch, I just saw red eyes shining in the shadows along the side of my house.
I jumped off my bike, drew the Beretta and covered where the eye shine was. I could see something there… but I didn’t know what it was. My flashlight… I had one with me… was in my backpack, doing me not a damn bit of good. The Beretta in my hand allowed me to stand my ground when a more sane man would have backed off. Just then my wife drove up in her Explorer and the the sweep of her headlights illuminated the creature that I was damn near ready to light up.
It was Mule Deer Buck… Just standing there, looking at me, sniffing at me. It turned and bounded off as the car passed.
Having a large creature breathing and standing there… and you don’t know what the hell it is… it can be disturbing. Bears are in the mountains just behind Ogre Ranch… and I hate bears. Pooh even makes my trigger finger itch. The idea of having a bear here did not make me happy. We had one before, about seven years ago. A small black bear. No big deal, but still… it’s just the bear that mauls more people than any other. A 15 round mag full of PDX1 backed up with a couple 20 rounders was plenty enough for a bear. Even a shadowy nightmare bear. Nightbears. I hate Nightbears. We also have Cougars out here. Lots of them. Older women and the Mountain Lion types… Both are highly dangerous… And their are the Coyotes and Feral Dogs that come around too. But the eye shine was much higher than cougars and canines.
I had to laugh a bit as the big buck deer bounded away and disappeared. It’s the unknown thought made that brief moment rather scary. In that brief moment, the big service auto was a comfort and a half. Of course, I’d rather have had one of my 12 Gauges, but I didn’t feel like I was holding a squirt gun.
November is now passed and that means I have the option of not wearing my Beretta 92FS. December First, I put on my Glock 23L and instantly appreciated the lighter weight of it. But as the day went on, I found myself missing the Beretta. The heft of it. Pulling it out, the Glock just didn’t have the pleasing lines and good looks of the Beretta… it was disappointing. I’ll be rolling with the Beretta more often now.
Last couple days I have been packing my Glock 22. This is the $200 dollar Rescue Glock that I saved and rebuilt. I have to say that it’s becoming one of my favorite handguns. The chop-job I gave it, cutting it down to G23 size was a big help. The stippling job also helped. It fits remarkably well in my hand.
But I think what makes it carry so well though… is the holster.
Jason from Consealment Solutions put a rig together for me that I just love.
I was going to write up a review here… but it wouldn’t to it justice. I’m going to have to show you. Video Review is coming.
Nov 30th 1999, I posted a thought on TheFiringLine.com that I titled “Rethinking the Novak Sights”.
You can check out that thread here. It’s an interesting read. And some of the ideas that were put out there are only starting to really catch on. But more on that in a moment.
Back then the Novaks were taking the gun community by storm and these things were being installed on everything. I even remember seeing a Remington 870 with a Novak Rear Sight installed. Much like today, I think it’s popularity was due to the fact that while it wasn’t actually any better, the Novaks looked new and cool and to show that you were Switched On, you had to have them. Such things are still going on in the firearms community today, but probably even more so as the Internet has become universal and pop culture spreads through it faster than the Zombie Virus.
The problem that I mentioned in the original post wasn’t ever really addressed for years. Novaks continued their Cool Guy swagger through the gun industry even still. The M&P Pistols, still essentially brand new, came out with Novak Style sights… or Ramp Sights as some call them. Some guys would cut a flat face on the Ramp portion to try to solve the problem… taking a more expensive sight and then cutting on it to try to help improve the poor design. Some guys went back to the normal flat faced sights made popular by Trijicon, as found on Glocks and other pistols. These are better than Ramp Sights by far, but are still less than Ideal.
Rob Pincus though… he’s actually done something that addresses the issue of One Hand Manipulation. After all these years – the problem has been solved.
Outstanding. Problem solved. I like the wide notch rear sight, I like the fact that it can hook solid and lets you jack that slide with authority. BRAVO.
I am going to be ordering these sights as soon as I can free up some funds. I have 3 Glocks I want these on.
Back to the odd fixes… Skateboard Tape on your gun. Back at the time of that original posting, I had only heard of people using SBT on their guns, normally around the Grip. This guy that mentioned the tape actually on the slide. I have since seen it a few times… but more recently I am seeing it more and more on guns. The concept of adding grip has really taken off. I’ve seen SBT on the sides, top, and at the front of the slides on just about every sort of serious use pistol. I’ve even seen it on some less than serious guns… such as a Hi-Point. I’ve never put any on my guns, but I am considering trying it on my Glock 23.
You guys may remember how I rescued an old abused Glock. It cost me 200 bucks, which is about 50 bucks more than a Hi Point and a Box of Ammo.
Well, if you don’t remember, I was working at the gun store one day when a fellow brought in a ragged old Glock that was just beat to hell. We gave him far too much for it on Trade In. The thing was so bad, it wouldn’t be able to be resold. In fact, it didn’t even function. The Trigger wouldn’t reset. The slide… well, the dude tried to polish off all the Black and make it shiny. He failed. The frame looked like a Pit Bull’s Chew Toy.
So I filled out the 4473, purchased it from the store and took it home. It was mine.
The trigger needed new parts. I had a small collection of such parts. Some aftermarket, some Factory Glock. I replaced everything in the trigger mechanism. The result was more than satisfactory. I like it a great deal. After test firing, I was satisfied in the gun’s function. But I hated to look at it. Since I couldn’t hurt it anymore than it had already suffered, I modded it.
This was what it looked like when I got it. Nasty. I cut down the frame from 22 length to 23 length, then I ground off bits and sanded bits and then stippled it. It now feels nothing like a Glock in the hand, and it fits my hand perfectly.
This weekend at Crusader HQ, I took that slide and gave it a fine Media Blast to remove all the problems, old finish, and to rough up the slide so the Cerakote could stick to it better. I took my time on this and really made sure I got everything nice and even.
Then Joe hit it with some Cerakote in a new color I really dig… “Magpul Flat Dark Earth”. This is a darker flat dark earth or Coyote Tan color than is the norm. Looks really good.
The completed gun, better view.
The gun feels better in the hand than it looks. Feels slightly smaller, grippier, and comfortable. This Glock is becoming a personal favorite. I really like the results. If I pick up another model 23, I might chop it down to 27 length. Just for fun.
A lot of guys have discovered the Glock 21. Glock’s full sized .45 pistol. Even Guns magazine has a gushing article about it.
Yeah, it’s a great gun. But why have that, when you can have the model 20 in 10mm and have something amazing?
10mm > .45 Auto. Always.