Story and photos by Russell Purcell (@RoadTestRuss)
Glock is renowned for producing some of the most popular, safe and reliable handguns in the industry, and recently the company have been making moves to gain an even larger share of the Canadian firearms market.
With the launch of a number of Gen 5 models and the announcement that the company was going to a lower pricing model, Glock has set the stage to attract even more gun enthusiasts to the now iconic brand.
And they weren’t done yet, as a couple of special edition Gen 4 models also hit shelves recently- the Glock 17 FS and the Glock 19 Canadian Edition. DVC has acquired both of these unique handguns and examples will soon enter the rental fleet.
I recently had the opportunity to put some rounds through each of these firearms and you can do the same at the upcoming Glock Days event on Sunday, June 24th.
Quick Look: Glock 17 Gen 4 FS
The Glock 17 is in short, the most widely used 9mm handgun in the world. As a result, it has proven itself to be durable, reliable, and economical. The Glock 17 has evolved to be efficient and a consistent performer, and subtle changes to the grips and controls over the years have made it even easier to make the gun fit almost any hand or shooter. This is important, as with comfort comes confidence.
Although the fifth generation of the Glock 17 was recently released with an even greater number of revisions than seen in previous generational transitions, the company decided that there was an opportunity to produce a limited run of another variant of the Gen 4 model to gauge interest in some potential features that they may offer on other models down the road.
Product planners recognized that many Glock 17 buyers would purchase a new gun and immediately start tweaking it with either Glock or aftermarket accessory parts. I know that in the case of my own Glock 17 Gen 4 I replaced the stock slide lock and magazine release button with extended versions, as well as added the beaver tail back straps. These modifications were all performed using Glock OEM parts, and allowed me to make more intuitive use of the gun’s controls.
In response, Glock decided to outfit this new gun with some of the most popular upgrades already onboard. The resulting Glock 17 Gen 4 FS comes equipped with the extended magazine release and an extended slide stop already fitted to the gun, as well as a new steel sights. But the most substantial modification is the inclusion of front cocking serrations on the slide, a feature first popularized on the venerable 1911, as well as the handguns of many of Glock’s competitors.
The addition of front serrations allow users another means to manipulate the slide for round verification, disassembly, or clearing malfunctions, but it also proves a necessity should you mount an optic.
I shot the Glock 17 Gen 4 FS back-to-back with my own Gen 4, and noticed no significant changes to actual shooting dynamics, which is a good thing in my opinion, as consistency is what Glock buyers are looking for with each new acquisition.
Quick Look: Glock 19 Gen 4 Canadian Edition
The Glock 19 Gen 4 Canadian Edition represents the Austrian company’s first ever country specific model. This limited edition pistol features a maple leaf laser engraved on the slide, and surprisingly, is priced the same as a standard Glock 17 Gen 4.
The gun is equipped with all the features of a standard Glock 19 Gen 4, but comes fitted with a special 106mm barrel to make it fit Canadian legal requirements. This also means that it ships with 10-round magazines, rather than the high capacity 15-rounders relished by our neighbours in the United States.
Prior to the arrival of this gun, the standard Glock 19 was not permitted in Canada due to the length of its barrel (102mm), although some custom units retrofitted with longer aftermarket threaded barrels were available through some dealers.
Firing the Glock 19 proved predictable and familiar, and I managed tight groups almost immediately due to my years of experience with the Glock 17 which feels similar in operation. However, the one thing that I had to adapt to was magazine changes, as the first couple of times I pinched the heel of my palm between the bottom of the grip and the magazine during insertion. I guess my big mitts prefer the full-size grips I am used to on all my own handguns.