The single stack 9mm market is huge. The Smith & Wesson’s Shield and the new Glock 43 are dominating that market. One great thing about Glock’s is the fact that just about everyone makes parts and accessories for them. The aftermarket accessories and parts are plentiful, and easy to install. So now you have your G43, you have run ample carry ammo through it and it is ready for carry. What are the must haves for your G43. Let’s keep this simple and pick the three (3) absolute must haves for your Every Day Carry (EDC) G43.
This post was originally written by Hognose, from Weaponsman.com . He kindly gave me permission to re-post it here as a guest post and we are always thrilled to share his work. You can read more of the websites always excellent and always entertaining and informative posts by going to this link.
Hat tip Miguel at Gun Free Zone, who wonders if one of the mishaps Larry’s writing about is this one. You can click the link if you like (and it’s a good tale of real-world first aid), but for most of you, the illustration will remind you what can go wrong with appendix carry.
That cat was danger close to living to collect the usually posthumous Darwin Award, but apparently the projectile did not connect with anything vital in his junk. Good luck, though, explaining that scar to dates. (“Go ahead and kiss it. It’s just a chancre!” probably won’t fly).
Instructor (and aidman) Stan Lee’s conclusions:
Briefing of the four firearms safety rules is of course a given, after that the first aid/gun shot wound treatment and medical evacuation plan should be thoroughly briefed as if an emergency incident had already happened to you.
He then runs through an emergency kit and emergency plan. It’s a good idea, for reasons we’ll cover in half a moment.
Someone should be able to brief all of the above in detail. That someone should be with the party from the beginning to the end. I think it’s acceptable to have the GSW kit centralized but extra credit points for wearing it.
Stan learned his first aid in the Navy. All the services teach much better and more effective first aid than they did when old dinosaurs like Tom Kratman and I went in, and even better than my old unit had on our first Afghan tour. Didn’t happen to our battalion, but in and around our time, other SF units lost guys because they exsanguinated, or developed tension pneumothorax, and the non-medics on site weren’t skilled enough to treat them. (Well, that, and medevac was weak until 2004 or so — too few frames and crews, and it’s a big country). That would never happen now; even support units get pretty decent combat life saver training.
Still, it’s a lot better to use your superior weapons handling skills so as not to have to demonstrate your superior first aid skills.
Stan makes another point (and another reason to Read The Whole Thing™ on Miguel’s site) in that simply briefing safety rules and plans at the start of a class is a Real Good Thing. In aviation, we found that when aircrews began briefing an instrument approach procedure-by-procedure, the number of errors (and mishaps) declined. In airborne operations, we found that when airborne units started doing a formal, stylized prejump briefing that everybody (especially devil-may-care skydivers) laughs at, the number of errors (and jump injuries) declined. It’s great that an American paratroop officer can command his battalion, regiment or division from a wheelbarrow pushed by one of his privates, but he’d probably rather not go down in history for that.
IWB and particularly Appendix Carry holsters introduce risk factors that are not present in an old-fashioned outside-the-waistband holster. (We also think that schools’ focus on quick-draw engagements is usually misplaced). You can have an accident with any holster, but unless you’ve got a lot of experience, choose one that adds minimal risks.
As Larry notes, if you use a safetyless (“trigger safety”, “safe action”, anything that would have scared the horse out from under a 1909 cavalryman who had the grip safety added to the 1911) firearm you need to be extra careful about holstering and reholstering. Or, well, look at the picture.
Now, you can choose any firearm, and every one has its own risk factors. You can operate any handgun safely (we do not believe Larry has ever had an ND in God-knows how many Glock rounds), but you have to know it and its properties and operate it either with your mind on it 100%, or with skills drilled and drilled until you’re always, instinctively safe with it.
23-year-old man accidentally shot himself during a gun safety class at a pawn shop, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
It happened at Instant Replay Pawn Shop and Shooting Range on Colonial Drive between Dean and Rouse roads, said Lt. Paul Hopkins.
The gun went off accidentally and the bullet grazed his leg, Hopkins said.
Amazing how this guns just “went off.” No wonder newspaper guys all want to ban guns, they think of them as malevolent presences, stalking training classes and firing ranges, bent on bringing their primordial evil to bear on their hapless bearers.
Of course, that’s all bosh and nonsense. They’re simply machines, slavishly obeying the laws of physics and the input human operators apply to their user interfaces. In all history, the gun that “went off accidentally” is rarer that a comet sighting. He should admit he “set it off accidentally.” He, too, is going to live.
He’ll probably never make that mistake again. But you know, we’re supposed to be able to learn from his mistake, rather than only learn from our own.
The last decade has been a wild ride for the AR15. The technology rush that shaped the basic rifle of the AWB era has given way to a technology rich rifle platform made to promote quick hits, at any distance, with ergonomic excellence and a user centric design.
It was only a matter of time before the technology march reached into the territory of the sidearm.
A PDW is a Personal Defense Weapon. It’s that weapon you would give tanker crews and other non combat troops which packs more punch than a pistol, but less than a rifle. It’s an in-between to shoot back at your assailant and get out of dodge. Here too, technology has tricked down to miniaturize existing designs such as the AR15 and equip it with high performance accessories. The civilian marketplace has made great strides in pushing technology and the design of the AR to the peak of its performance.
Now here we are… it’s 2015 and now the technology is transitioning to the pistol. As miniature red dots make their way onto thousands more pistols this summer, we have to take another look at the pistol and examine the direction it will take in the future. My thoughts?
We are turning pistols into the equivalent of a civilian PDW:
As we install micro red dots and then install compensators to keep the muzzle down and make that fancy dot easier to track, we can see that modern defensive pistols are slowly following the same path as the AR. As race gun technology trickled down into the military world, we forged the utility of the fighting rifle together with the practicality of the race gun to give our soldiers one of the best fighting rifles in the world.
Now we will see the same transformation of the pistol. It will be the melding of a traditional defensive handgun with the miniaturized features of the race pistol. We see manufacturers offering micro red dot mounting systems right from the factory. We see well known trainers equipping their pieces with +5 or +6 magazine extensions. I saw several “non race-gun” CCW pieces equipped with slide mounted red dots competing in a USPSA event.
So do we need to go this route? Does a defensive pistol need this junk?
We likely will not be in the next Kenya Mall style attack. The chance is infinitesimal… but as red dots and control accessories become more commonplace in the CCW pistol, who wouldn’t want a pistol that runs at the cutting edge of speed and performance? I don’t intend to stick around and play hero in any mass shooting, but if an assailant gets between my family and the exit I want to lay down lead so heavy the coroner would believe he was hit by a shotgun. We got *lucky* in Garland, Texas.
I purchased the G17 you see above to specifically to test out the latest in drop in, non custom performance accessories. My intent is to run this gun in USPSA open division as soon as I get all the accessories I need. I want a RDS, Light, and a Compensator. I will carry it in winter time under my coat as my CCW and if I can figure out a way to conceal it in the summer, game on. I figure… why not.
While taking a break from testing the new Colt 901 Shawn and I put his Colt Defender and my Glock G26 together for a quick comparison.
Colt lists the Defender as having a 3″ barrel, with an overall length of 6.75″ and weighing in at 24 oz. Glock lists the G26 as having a 3.42″ barrel, an overall length of 6.49″ and weighing in at 21.7 oz.
Having held both you don’t notice the 2.3 oz. difference between the two and the Defender feels more balanced in the hand while the Glock comes off more muzzle heavy.
Note that while the G26 has a shorter grip, with the finger grove extension on the mag, they are very similar in grip length. I consider the extension a non negotiable necessity on the subcompact Glocks so I’d call this a wash.
With the rubber Hogue grips installed on the Defender, grip width is very similar.
One of the most reliable firearms you can decide to buy is a police/LE trade-in or used Glock, if you know what to look for. When looking at one of these used Glocks there are important things you need to look for and replace, if you purchase one. In this article, I will breakdown some of the key things to look for and avoid, as well as the critical parts that must be replaced after your purchase. A gun store will not let you strip the gun completely down to its small internal parts so you have to understand what to look for, to insure you are getting what you want. This will cover only Gen2 and some Gen3 Glocks, there is a reason for that, and you will see why as we go along.
First let’s talk about the advantages of buying a police trade-in or used Glock. When you understand what to look for in a used Gen2 or Gen3 Glock, you know you are buying the most reliable and longest serving generations of the Glock design. You are avoiding the sometimes problematic issues with the newer Gen3 and Gen4 designs and you are hopefully spending a lot less on the firearm. On average you can get the trade-in /used Gocks in the Low to Mid-300 dollar range. I recently helped a co-worker select an excellent condition LE trade-in G23. He spent $314.00 on the firearm, I put in $20.00 worth of parts and it was good to go. Another huge advantage and one of the main reasons to buy the older Glocks, is no MIM parts. The Gen2 and select Gen3 Glocks have investment cast /machine tool steel locking blocks, extractors and firing pins. You are getting a more robustly built Glock, with higher quality parts in those key areas, vs. the newer Glocks.
You must pay close attention to serial numbers when looking at used Glocks. This will serve several purposes, unique to a Gen2 or Gen3 Glock. The serial number will help you identify the approximate date of manufacturer and what to look for, depending on it being a Gen2 or Gen3 gun. Look to see if the Serial numbers on the Slide, Frame and Barrel match. If the serial numbers on any three of these only contain numbers, then they have been replace or are aftermarket if they are not OEM Glock.
Gen2 guns have had several mandatory part changes and upgrades, depending on the approximate date of manufacturer. This will also help you understand how old the firearm is. All Gen2 guns will have the tool steel parts we have already talked about, unless someone changed them out. In the 2002 Glock armorers guide, replacement of the old slide lock spring to the upgraded slide lock spring is recommended. All Gen2 guns will need this part upgraded. Some Gen2 guns that have a black trigger bar will need the Six-Part upgrade. Serial Numbers starting from AA through SL (depending on model) may need this upgrade, if not already done. (see Six-Part Upgrade: below for more information) If you stay in the three letter serial number range starting at (AAA###) and up, you should be ok as far as the Six-Part upgrade is concerned.
With the Gen3 guns, you want to look at the serial number closely to make sure it was made before Early to Mid-2009. As long as you are under serial number range (MSZ###) or do not have the dip extractor you are probably ok as far as MIM parts. Sometime in Early to Mid-2009, Glock started using the MIM locking blocks, extractors and firing pins. There may be some mixed MIM/non-MIM parts in the (M) serial number range, so be aware of that. The only required upgrade/replacement part in pre-2002 Gen3’s, is the replacement of the old slide lock spring to the upgraded slide lock spring, as mention above. 2002-2009 Gen3 guns will not require any part upgrades. important to note: if the serial number on the frame starts in the (EAK### through EVR###) range, the rear slide rails are prone to breakage. Glock recommends those frames be sent in for replacement.
There are some key areas of wear that you can look for, on trade-in /used Glocks. This will help you identify if the firearm has been used excessively or minimally, depending on caliber. Your .40 cal and .357 sig Glock will show more wear in these areas than a 9mm or 45ACP will, due to them being harder on the firearm. Add all of these indicators up to make a decision on how used you think the firearm is. It will really help if you ask the gun shop, if you can removed the slide (field Strip) the firearm, to inspect the gun. I do not buy any used firearms unless I am able to do this. Bellow are examples of normal wear on 9mm and .40 cal Glocks, nothing extremely heavy.
1. Barrel Wear Areas
Barrel chatter marks will be visible on the outside of the barrel. The top of the barrel chamber will also have wear marks where it makes contact with the top of the slide. The stronger / more pronounced the wear in these areas will indicate use.
2. Slide Wear Areas
The outside slide condition will indicate carry use. The inside of the slide will show wear in two particular areas. The inside top of the slide will indicate wear, where the top of the barrel makes contact with the slide as it reciprocates and on the slide rails on each side of the barrel chamber. Heavy peening wear on the slide rails slightly in front of the barrel chamber area indicates heavy use.
3. Frame Wear
You want to look at the frame carefully to inspect it for cracks or any major damage. While the frame is polymer (plastic), wear on the outside of the frame is not an indicator of firing use, only carry use. A lot of the LE trade-in guns are carried more than shot.
Replacement Part Recommendations:
After selecting the used Glock and purchasing it using the information above, I would recommend purchasing an OEM Glock Spring Kit and have it instaulled. This serves two purposes. (1) If you have a Gen2 or Gen3 with the old slide lock spring, it is in the kit. (2) The spring kit replaces all six of the springs in the firearm and will insure that all springs are fresh as true round count will be unknown. Replacing the main recoil spring is also a good idea when round count is unknown. Since the main recoil spring and slide lock spring are in the kit, this is the best purchase as it will only cost you around $20.00 dollars. Most Glock parts are very inexpensive, if you identify any weird after market parts you are not sure about, replace them.
Trigger Springs (NY1) & (NY2):
Some Police/LE trade-in Glocks might have New York (NY) NY1 or NY2 Trigger Springs in them. A NY1 spring will be OD green and a NY2 spring will be Orange. Bellow: The black frame on the left, has a NY1 OD green spring in it and the OD frame on the right, has a stock 5.5 lbs spring. If you have one of the NY Trigger Springs, your trigger pull will be heavier than the stock 5.5 lbs spring. You will probably want to removed the NY’s and replace it with the 5.5 lbs spring.
.40 Caliber Gen2 Glocks:
If you are buying an early Gen2 .40 caliber Glock, usually pre 1995, you will need to be on the lookout for the 4340 ejector. The 4340 ejector was replaced with the 1882 ejector. Some confuse the 4340 ejector as a broken ejector, due to its short appearance. The 4340 ejector was replaced, as it puts unnecessary stress on the extractor and due to late ejection can cause case deformation and crimping. This can also cause stove pipe issues. Over time the use of the 4240 ejector will cause the extractor to break. If you find a .40 cal Glock with a 4340 ejector, you may want to pass on it. If you buy a Glock with the 4340 ejector, replace it with a new Trigger Mechanism Housing with the 1882 ejector.
It is important to note this upgrade is extremely rare to come across, as it was identified over 20 years ago. Some Gen1 ‘s and early Gen2’s may require the Glock Six-Part upgrade as mention above. If you identify the Glock is one that needs this upgrade, I would suggest passing on that particular Glock as replacing the firing pin and extractor with new MIM parts would defeat one of the main reasons of getting the older/used Glock. If you are looking at a trade-in /used gun, you can easily pull the slide back and look at the trigger bar. If it is solid black and not just dirty from use, it will need the upgrade. This consists of replacing the (trigger bar, firing pin, firing pin safety & spring, extractor and spring-load bearing).
Conclusion / Final Thoughts:
Most police/LE trade-in Glocks have been maintained by a department armorer and will probably have the upgraded parts already in them, from years ago. Used Glocks that where in private hands, will more than likely be the ones that need minor part replacement here and there. I have purchased several LE trade-in /used Glocks. Two of my main personal defensive firearms are a late Gen2 G19 and an early Gen3 G22. These have been my go to Glocks and I prefer the quality of the older Glocks compared to the new offerings. Glock does not care if you are the original owner. They have a lifetime guarantee and if you ever have a problem, simply call them and they will take care of it on their dime. Information on Glock serial numbers can be found here: (glocktalk.com Serial Number) as long as it stays up. If you remember to look for the key things talked about here, you will be walking away with a excellent Glock, that will be very dependable and reliable for years to come.
The “Female Conceal Carry for Summer” article has been very popular. I know there is a lot of interest and a need, for more conceal carry information for women. I have found there is not a lot of information out there and I have had to do a lot of trial and error for this article. In this article you will see several Appendix Inside Waist Band (AIWB) holsters and Outside Waist Band (OWB) holsters. These holsters and companies are as follows; a Dark Star Gear holster, a custom AIWB kydex holster, a Raven Concealment Vanguard2 holster and Kinetic Concepts Tactical (KCT) holsters. Also, an I.C.E. Belly Band and Volund Gearworks Atlas Belt will be used. I will be showing you outfits that conceal a Glock 42, Sig P238, Glock 19, and a Smith & Wesson M&P Shield.
Sweaters with detail and skirts:
I’ve noticed when wearing a skirt and conceal carrying I have two options I can wear a looser waist skirt with the I.C.E. Belly Band and carry IWB or I can wear a skirt with loops, belt and carry OWB. It does become a bit tricky with high waist skirts. I have yet to find a comfortable carry option for those.
The great thing about this black sweater that you can’t see well in the pictures is that it has a fake wrap look with buttons on the front and side. With that extra detail on the front it hides any bulges from the firearm really well. I like to wear darker sweaters I find they hide the print of the firearm better. I also look for shirts or sweaters with added details; buttons, wrap, bunching, gathers, patterns.
Long Sweaters with leggings:
I love wearing a Belly Band with my leggings. It is very comfortable and with the I.C.E. Belly Band I have multiple options of what firearm I can carry. With this outfit a basic long sweater, leggings and tall boots I can wear my Sig P238, Glock 42, Glock 19 or Glock 26. With the Glock 19 or Glock 26 I use the I.C.E Glock open bottom holster, attach it to the Velcro on the Belly Band and carry at the 4 o’clock position. I.C.E store carries several holster to accommodate firearms you may carry.
I have many different long sweater legging combos and I love being able to just throw on a comfy outfit and still be protected. Most long sweaters have a fly away in the front. I like having the break away in the front so I can access my firearm quicker if needs be. I wear an under shirt, then my belly band with firearm, then an over shirt or tank top, then my sweater. It really adds no more bulk since my under shirt is basically a top slip. The main use of the undershirt is so I don’t have the firearm resting on my skin for long periods of time.
Work out clothing:
When I go for a walk with my kids or jog by myself, I like to bring along some protection. With the Belly Band and my Sig p238 or Glock 42 I can do that and I don’t have to wear a big bulky shirt or extra layers. If it’s cold I do add my workout hoodie, which only adds to the concealment. I usually wear yoga pants or shorts which I feel keeps my firearm more secure since the waist is tight.
Break away sweaters:
I use the same idea as the leggings with this breakaway front sweater, but use my kydex holsters. I prefer to appendix carry. It is the most comfortable for me. I can easily access my firearm with my kids, or holding shopping bags. I don’t have to worry about bending over to pick up my kids at the park or store and having my weapon print. I wear Silver jeans or Vigoss jeans and capris. I buy my regular size and have no problem carrying IWB. My carry belt is Volund Gearworks Atlas belt (Volund Gearworks Atlas Belt for Women). I’ve been wearing it almost daily for over a year and I still love it.
I really like wearing flowy light tops. This is a peasant type top, the fabric is light and not fitted at the bottom. Which conceals firearms really well for me. I have no problem with printing or the shirt getting stuck on the gun with appendix carry. The pattern on this shirt also helps with the concealment.
Banded bottom tops also work well for me to conceal carry with. They have more give to the middle of the shirt but with a fitted bottom. Some banded bottom shirts can be trickier if the band is at the same height as the holster. I like the tight bottom on banded shirts because I know the shirt isn’t going to move and expose my firearm. This particular top also has a low back so appendix carry or side carry work well. When it’s colder out I can still wear this tank top with a black jacket or cardigan which just adds to the concealment.
This is a great home-run shirt for me. It has pattern, detail and a banded bottom. The upper back detail is great to draw eyes up and away from my waist wear my firearm is. The diagonal stripe helps camouflage printing and the banded bottom helps the shirt stay in place. I really like to find combo tops I think they work great for most of my firearms. With this shirt I can carry any of my firearms with any holster at either the small of my back or at appendix. With small of the back carry I do have to be careful with bending over or picking something up because the firearm will print. Which is another reason why I love appendix carry.
Light weight Jackets:
A great thing about colder weather is you can throw on a jacket to any of your outfits which adds warmth and another layer of concealability. I’m wearing a simple long sleeve shirt which is not skin tight. With summer capris that work great with knee high boots, no need to fold and tuck the bottom of your jeans. I can wear this shirt alone and conceal the Shield fine or add the extra layer of a jacket. Since I’m appendix carrying I will still be able to quickly draw my firearm if needed. If you are carrying in the small of the back with a jacket on I recommend practicing drawing your firearm so you don’t get hung up on the extra material. This jacket snaps closed so if I did get cold and wanted to snap up I could still quickly undo my jacket if needed. Of course, cardigans and heavy jackets will work just the same.
There is no reason to lose your style just to carry a firearm. I suggest carrying on the body whenever possible. I recommend when shopping for new clothing to wear your firearm, that way you will know if it will conceal well and not print. Remember, darker colored clothing will conceal better than lighter colors. If you don’t have a good carry belt or holster, I recommend getting one. Having a quality holster and carry belt will help you conceal your firearm. If you have a good foundation in place you will be able to conceal with comfort, ease and style. A good foundation consists of a good holster, belt, firearm and clothing. Without all (4) of these key elements, you will have a harder time concealing your firearm.
I’ve showed you many different firearms, holsters and carrying positions as examples for you to find what works best for you. I don’t carry multiple firearms. Some days I do need to change my holster, belt or firearm to accommodate my outfit. Occasionally, I must change carrying positions between appendix, strong side traditional and 4 o’clock, based on the outfit I’m wearing. Appendix carry is where I consistently carry and consistency in your carry position is what you want. Like I said above, the appendix position works best for my daily life and my body type. The key is to find what works best for you most of the time and what you are the most comfortable carrying.
Following on the heels of the new long slide Glock in 45ACP and the single stack .380, the new G45 simline subcompact single stack 9mm Glock has been highly anticipated. Holding 6 rounds of 9mm in an easy to conceal package with the traditional Glock reliability.
Some worried that the smaller grip on the G45 combined with the recoil of hot 9mm loads in a small lightweight gun would make it harder to control. That is not the case as the blocky ergonomics of the G45 give the shooter complete control over the muzzle flip. The new G45 is super small and super reliable, it is going to give other pocket pistol makers serious competition.
The slim frame of the G45 is so concealable that it is nearly impossible to make it print when carried.
Yet the generous ergonomic 2X4 like grip makes it easy to draw and shoot.
Despite the small grip, controllability is excellent. Fast follow up shots are easily done.
Unfortunately due to the G45 single stack nature it does not accept the legacy G26/19/17/18 Mags, it will only be a matter of time before larger factory and aftermarket mags are available.
The G45 diminutive size can make hard to spot even when open carrying. This small black gun easily blends in with a dark belt and the folds of the carriers shirt.
Some may worry that this small single stack 9mm is only suited for deep concealment or pocket carry. They can rest easy as the G45 can handle hot +P+ loads nearly equivalent to a .357 magnum. This makes the G45 not that dissimilar to the old police service revolvers. Between modern ammo choices and quick reloads, a 6 shot firearm is fully practical for law enforcement work.