I was expecting disappointment, I’ll admit that I didn’t want to like it. I’ve been harboring a grudge against Glock since I was young, having been raised on revolvers and 1911s, “plastic guns” were a bad thing.
Being somewhat petite my first concealed carry gun was a big decision, and after trying every gun small enough to hide on my person without having to burn all my skinny jeans and t-shirts I decided on, (drum roll) the Sig P238. That means weeding through snappy recoil, terrible mag catches, no slide stops, guns with 2 finger grips and no sights to speak of. The Sig fit my MO, 1911 controls, low recoil and I can conceal without the wardrobe reboot.
I have shot Glock many times while teaching and I felt I had a fair opinion on why I avoided them. This grudge however has been eroding quickly due to the volume of Glock related work I have had a hand in doing as a machinist. They are smooth and simple and now with all the grip stippling, frame remolding, front cocking serrations and aftermarket triggers, my interest was finally peaked.
A .380 Glock is nothing new. The Glock 25 and 28 have been for sale to mil/leo since 1995 and 1997 respectively, however, it is new for the American civilian market. The argument behind the 42 is this: The 25 is the size of the 19, so why not carry the 19? The 28 is the same frame as the 26, so why not just carry the 26? In many foreign markets the 25 and 28 make sense because civilians cannot use the same calibers as their respective militaries. So in America to sell a successful .380 in our “already been done” market, Glock would need to maintain their reliability and, be inventive.
They succeeded. The Glock 42 is a single stack .380 semiauto that, unlike the blowback of the 25 and 28, uses an all new locked breach design. The mag well feels bigger than it is and the mag release is easy to reach and function. The slide lock is very neat in classic Glock fashion and the frame is perfectly contoured for a small tight grip. The slide is very easy to function, and I believe that this will open doors for the elderly and persons that have trouble with semiautos. Felt recoil is minimal and flat. It returns to the sights quickly without the snappy shock expected from its competitors. The trigger and sights seal the deal for this products success. The sights give it the feel of a larger gun and the trigger helps it act the part, all in all the 42 is the classic Glock, but there is something charming and refreshing about it. You owe it to yourself to give this gun a chance to become your EDC, your wives new gun, mothers or fathers answer to arthritic hands, or your daughters first concealed option. This is perfection, Glock perfection.
And that’s exactly what I am thinking. “Why not carry a 9mm?” speaks from the needs of gun enthusiasts. Gun enthusiasts will tolerate recoil, because they understand the advantages it brings.
Those who recognize the need to protect themselves, but aren’t gun enthusiasts don’t want a high powered, hard shooting, hard to handle gun. They won’t practice with a heavy-recoiling pocket cannon, but something that is smooth shooting will make them feel much more comfortable carrying and more likely to train.
In that regard, Glock has hit upon something. Guns like this and the Ruger LC380 have the potential to create new gun owners. If your first gun is a Glock, and it is easy to shoot and you become proficient with it, you might branch out from there into more powerful guns. Besides, it looks like the ones they use on TV. That can’t be bad.
My wife, for example, has MS. She can’t shoot even medium powered handguns, much less a recoily compact 9mm. She approves of gun ownership, and has bought guns for me as gifts. She is getting her concealed carry permit. Beyond that, she has little interest in guns.
But, I can see that this would be the perfect gun for her. For that reason, I might end up getting one.
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