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GUNS Magazine August 2010 - Page 40

thE latEst GEnEratiOn GlOCk 22 .40 s&w GOEs BEyOnd a nEw Grip trEatmEnt, in sEvEral ways. he manufacturer’s motto—“Glock Perfection”—upon review, T could have been better phrased “Quest For Perfection.” Glock has applied several evolutionary changes to their trend-setting, super-popular handgun in the last 30 years. The most noticeable alterations have been in the shape of the grip-frame. The first Glock 17, later to be dubbed “Generation 1,” had a flat frontstrap and a light cobblestone effect today’s collectors often refer to as “the smooth grip.” Gen 2 had a coarse, “grenade grip” checkering molded in, still with the flat front. In the Gen 3, fingergrooves were added to the frontstrap. When that configuration gained a light rail molded into the dust cover at the front of the frame, it became known as “Gen 3.5.” Last year saw the introduction of the RTF (Rough Textured Finish), which was in essence, a stippling of little polymer nubbins the company calls “polymids.” The RTF2 has been a big hit in law enforcement circles. Since it was obviously the next evolution in Glock grip-frame design, many of us called it colloquially “Generation 4.” I did so myself in an article on the RTF2 in American Handgunner. However, as publication of that issue loomed, Glock announced their new “Gen 4” model and, after all, Glock Inc. gets to define the terminology. My correction got to American Handgunner too late, so please accept my apologies Massad Ayoob Photos: Joseph R. Novelozo for referring to the RTF2 as the “4th Generation.” The Gen 4 pistol debuted in the Glock 22 .40 S&W and Glock 17 9mm Luger, the full-size service pistol formats. The most striking change is found in, yes, the grip-frame. Cognizant how interchangeable backstraps of different sizes (pioneered by Walther back in the ’90s and copied by nearly every other mainstream maker) had become as popular as light rails, Glock knew it was time to install them. They offer three sizes, and unlike most of the competition, the “size small” is actually integral to the pistol frame itself. This configuration brings the backstrap closer to the trigger, and measurably narrows the girth of the grip-frame. This allows the web of the hand to get deeper under the rear tang of the frame, and permits the trigger finger to get deeper into the triggerguard. Essentially, it gets a bit more finger onto the trigger. Back when Gaston Glock and his team originally designed the pistol, their research indicated the majority of auto pistol shooters were taught to engage the trigger with the pad of the index finger. Accordingly, the gun was “dimensioned” to allow the average adult male hand to reach that spot with the index finger naturally, while keeping the barrel of the pistol in line with the long bones of the forearm. Some people with shorter than average fingers found this compromised the fit of the Glock in their hands. Some others, me included, preferred to get more finger onto the trigger, often making contact with the palmar surface of the distal joint, to get more leverage to pull a relatively firm trigger straight back. While Glock’s 3.5-pound connector actually requires about 4.5 pounds of pressure from the center of the trigger, the company has long emphasized it is only for recreational shooting. The standard Glock trigger-pull weight is 5.5 pounds, and at the request 40 WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM • AUGUST 2010

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