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Required Glock Modifications for Everyday Carry

Required Glock Modifications for Everyday Carry

I believe that a Glock is the perfect fighting pistol. I do mean “a” Glock because individuals have varied preference with regard to pistol size and caliber. With a specific size and caliber, though, I hold that Glock is the best pistol to have at hand when self defense against a deadly threat is necessary.

glock logo

However, while the manufacturer’s promotional phrase is “Glock PERFECTION,” I can agree only in part. The out-of-the-box Glock is by no means perfection. My opinion is that Glock doesn’t so much make the perfect pistol as they make the perfect pistol hobby kit. Specific alteration is required in order to achieve perfection.

While I’d argue a Glock is head and shoulders above any other EDC-candidate pistol, I believe it is very unwise to carry any Glock pistol without a few necessary modifications.


There is nothing wrong with Glock’s stock sights with regard to sighting. If you can’t shoot quickly and accurately with the stock sights, the problem is not with them, but with you. That said, plastic sights are beyond useless to the point of liability when it comes to running a fighting/defensive gun.

Glock’s plastic stock sights should immediately be replaced with iron sights, of whatever configuration works best for you. I’d recommend that the rear sight not be of the sloped variety, but instead have a squared-off profile that is perpendicular to the slide in order to facilitate one-handed slide racking on a belt or table or tree or whatever is at hand when the need arises.


Avoid the sloping rear sight popular with some models. The slope makes 1-handed slide racking more difficult.

Frame and Grip

There are some who find fault with the finger ridges on the front of the grip of most Glock models. I’m not one of them, as these finger ridges perfectly mesh with my hand and I like that. What is problematic, however, is the fact that only the Gen 4 model’s (and the now-discontinued RTF frame) grip offers sufficient texture for good hand purchase while firing. More disappointing and especially dangerous is the fact that with wet hands (if it’s raining, if your palms are sweaty, or if your hands are bloody from fighting), it’s quite difficult to hold onto and manipulate a Glock pistol in defensive action. Even with the rougher Gen 4 grip.

I therefore hold that it is very unwise to carry a Glock pistol (or any pistol, for that matter) without either sandpaper grips or a stippling job. And I think adding adhesive grips is the wrong way to approach this issue. I stipple the frame of every one of my Glock pistols, as I have found anything added to the grip will come off in a very short time with any significant amount of training use (you do train, don’t you?). Some see stippling as a stylistic embellishment. I find it’s a required functional modification; a deal breaker for EDC. Stippling results in a frame that you can grip wet or dry without fail.


The Glock frame made perfect: Stippling to add the required texture and a Dremmel job on the right side of the frame where the grip meets the trigger guard.

Another necessary modification is rounding off the right hand side (for right-handed shooters) of the area connecting the grip with the trigger guard. This is where the strong hand middle finger is held firmly against the frame and vice-locked even tighter by the force of the support hand. Out of the box, this area is quite squared off and very un-ergonomic and it requires remedy in order to avoid severe discomfort after shooting more than ~20 rounds (if this doesn’t hurt your finger, you’re not gripping your pistol tightly enough).

The Dremmel-driven modification here is not so much an undercutting of the trigger guard as it is a rounding of the side transition, where the middle-finger’s first knuckle will go. The result is a fantastic boon to grip comfort.


I find the Glock trigger to be decent, but by no means great. Some models tend to have better ones, like the Glock 43. The 43’s trigger is perhaps the best Glock trigger I’ve ever felt, but it is still a bit too heavy for my taste. Generally, though, a Glock’s trigger needs some work.

I’ve tried various trigger mods on various Glocks, utilizing connectors, springs, and plungers. What I find is best is to simply replace the stock connector with a 3.5 lb. connector. This replacement brings the trigger weight to around 4.5 pounds, which I prefer (you’d need to install the related trigger spring and striker safety plunger spring in order to get a 3.5 lb. trigger, which I do not recommend). More importantly, though, it gives the trigger a smoother take up and cleaner break and reset.


One caveat: 3.5 lb. connectors are not created equal. Glock’s 3.5 lb. connector is pretty decent, but there are better ones. My favorites come from Ghost Inc. and I favor either the Rocket or the EVO Elite connectors. I prefer the Rocket connector, but either requires fitting with a file, along with several assembly-test-disassembly-refit cycles.

Connector or spring replacement aside, I recommend NO polishing or grinding or other modification whatsoever to the trigger/striker system.

Popular Mods to Avoid

The wide and varied availability of aftermarket components for Glock pistols makes it easy for folks to go overboard and turn their perfect hobby kit into a silly caricature of a fighting pistol, often greatly reducing its practical functionality.

Avoid extended side-lock levers
The extended slide-lock lever was born of the mistaken idea that it’s a “slide release” lever. This mechanism was never meant to function as a slide release, which is why its external component is properly almost flush with the frame. It’s only purpose is to allow for the occasional need for the knuckle of your thumb to press upward on it to lock open the slide. One need never press down on the external lever. An extended lever gets in the way, often preventing the slide from locking open with the last round of the magazine. Moreover, it encourages the bad habit of using the lever to release the slide—which should only ever be accomplished by gripping the slide with the support hand and powering the frame forward with the strong hand to send the slide home.

Avoid titanium striker safety plungers
Titanium striker safety plungers are light and smooth and, therefore, valued by some as an upgrade for their Glock pistol. The opposite is true. These plungers attract carbon buildup which adheres easily and strongly to the top of the plunger, obviating any smoothness that was there. Moreover, they tend to deteriorate quickly with use, turning a vital safety mechanism into a liability.

Never, ever use a slide-plate “safety” device
One of the most important features of a Glock’s superiority to most other pistols is the lack of external mechanisms beyond the flush slide-lock lever. The Glock has three vital and redundant internal safety features that make the Glock perhaps the safest pistol one could carry. External/thumb safety levers on pistols only ever endanger lives because they mislead people into dangerous habits and into believing that safety is enabled or disabled by a lever. This is a fatal fallacy.

A person is safe or unsafe. No pistol is ever safe or unsafe because, quality and internal mechanisms aside, gun safety is a willful human volition. Only the operator can be safe or unsafe with a firearm. Assumptions to the contrary are the cause of every negligent gun death and injury ever inflicted or sustained.

Adding an external “safety” gadget to a Glock is the worst possible modification a Glock owner could make. Doing so transforms the mechanically safest, best-quality firearm available into one that invites irresponsible and negligent assumptions and extra, needless considerations to those manipulating their pistol.

Never rely upon or utilize a safety gadget on a pistol. Adhering to the 4 rules of firearm safety is the ONLY way to avoid killing or injuring yourself or someone else. No external lever can make a negligent person safe. Safety is 100% on people. When people forget this fact, people die.


So there you have it: what I deem to be the required modifications for any EDC Glock pistol, along with a few to definitely avoid. I’m completely serious when I say that every one of them—both the ones to get and the ones to avoid—is a 100% deal breaker.

If you own and carry a Glock pistol, I recommend without reservation that you make all of these required modifications to your carry gun and avoid all of the bad ones. Until the day Glock Inc. decides to do them at the factory, these mods are how you get Glock perfection.

Comments ( 12 )

  1. ReplyFather of 2 protector
    Very good choices in my opinion. My biggest must do is get night sights before I ever leave the gun Shop. Trigger is a personal preference. You can Polish the stock trigger and get it down right to 5 lbs and that's good enough to me. Instead of stimpling the grip, I use hogue. They're very stickyoung but again, personal preference.
  2. ReplyRM
    Good opinions all around, but I have to disagree on the Gadget. It was developed by a world class shooter/instructor whose resume is too long to list. Entrusted into Grand Master shooters like Caleb Giddings, Ernest Langdon, etc for field testing. Literally hundred of thousands of rounds later the Gagdet is a proven concept, they're just struggling with the manufacturing on an economic scale. I don't mean to be a dick, but the same guy was also one of the popularizing forces behind AIWB. As well as well-recorded endurance tests of Glock, M&P, and H&K handguns in excess of 50,000 rounds and up to 100,000 rounds. The 4 rules cannot be overstated in terms of importance, but people will be people. Giving them another completely optional tool to prevent an AD when AIWBing is not a bad thing. Especially when field-tested to the extent the "Gadget" has been.
  3. ReplyAUS
    I dont understand. why dont glock just put in the proper upgrades as standered stuff, charge a little more, and the customer doesn't have to shop around for all this stuff. so, for the $500.00 or so price that we are paying for the gun, Its not really perfect. now I have to search for all this shit, get a gunsmith to put all these items in properly, and pay him his price. YOU KNOW WHAT, I AM GOING TO BUY A SIG!
    • Colt45MaltLikka
      i dunno man. most people think its fun to dial in "their" glock. makes it special , ya know?
    • Matt
      Don't drop it.
    • Silver fox
      Glock perfection? Then why all the needed changes to make it ‘perfect ‘? Glock has many different glocks. I get the feeling that some of these changes would work different on different models. I like the ads for the 1911. Win two world wars then you might be able to claim perfection. Until then, just ok for edc or cc.
  4. ReplyGlockfan17
    Aus I have played around with multiple configurations on my Glock 17. I believe a big part of the reason Glock doesn't install these things factory, is because every individual is different and has a different comfort level with different parts and/or accessories. Glock cannot possibly conceive of every thing in what someone wants. Example: suppose I buy a Glock factory with extended controls etc. I get the gun and I don't like the slide stop lever, but like the extended take down lever? I would be in the same situation. I would have to buy parts to change what I like or don't like. It would cost far more to buy the gun, if they had to custom tailor to everyone's desired taste. Glock, I'm sure he put a lot of research into this. Glock is one of the most used handguns for personal defense due to its price, unsurpassed quality and engineering. Parts are reasonably inexpensive and have a high availability.
  5. ReplyMike
    I am Mostly in agreement with the author on his choice, or lack there or of mods for glocks. I used to hate the idea of no external safety. I've always owned hk usp's so a handgun without a hammer or safety just never really interested me. I thought it to be the opposite of safe, but now know different and glad I can enjoy my several glocks alongside my usp's. I recently got a 3rd gen 19 and honestly tried my best to shoot with factory sights but I simply hated them. I found a little secret, or at least the guys I talked to and shoot with didn't know this, but, glock has a store on their website with glock factory night sights at a steal! It's been a few months but I believe I got a front and rear night sight for $57.00 they also(for you that are weird lol) have steel sights non night sights just like the ones that came on your glock for $10 and some adjustable. Type in glock in google, go to home page and top right is the store. You buy the sights separate, front and rear. I noticed something different wen I went back, a two pc set front and rear sight in a small box for $67 low profile and some that says for 10mm,45, and another box for 40,9mm. Not sure why the extra $10 difference but it saved me probably $30/60 bucks instead of buying trijicon or another brand. You can also go to glock main office in ga to have them installed but from what I've heard don't expect a grand tour or anything, a simple waiting room is all you're treated to. I'm sure many reading this was well aware you could buy factory glock night sights (steel) from glock, but. I'm sure some did not, and it'll save you some money. My sights must of not had a good black coating because after three months they're mostly silver but a sharpie fixes it, I've been very pleased with how bright the nuclear green stuff glows, it's very bright and most likely was very fresh due to the demand for night sights. Sorry for being so long winded, but I was really happy wen I found out about really good night sights for $57, hopefully it'll help someone decide to save some money. I really don't get why they don't sell glocks with and without the night sights, I would have paid an extra $100 at the time to had the sights already on a new gun, and I'm sure I'm not alone.
  6. Reply10mm or Bust!
    People can complain all they want it about it being a slide "stop" and not a slide "release," but since day one with all of my firearms, I have used it as a slide release and have had zero issues. It significantly speeds up reloads and reduces required movements. Quality firearms are designed to function that way. Glock owners are notorious about complaining how it is wrong. It seems like another bandwagon forum fad. I will say this: I do not recommend it being a primary method until it has been practiced until it becomes a thoughtless action through muscle memory and you have made certain it will function as desired every time you do it. The factory Glock slide stop is no good as a slide release due to it being flat and flush to the frame. Extended slide releases are available through Glock and other aftermarket manufacturers. Once again, be certain that it works flawlessly every time before considering it as a carry or home defense gun. The incorrect part will most likely result in the slide not locking to the rear after the last round is fired. Note: the only reason I own any Glocks is because of my addiction to 10mm. Otherwise I would have stuck with HK, FNH etc....
  7. ReplyBen.
    I have a glock 43 gen 4. And I got the 3.5 new trigger. And it works great.
  8. ReplyBig George
    I like your article, it makes alot of sence not just for glocks but for all auto pistols. I have been in a few situations where i have had to use a pistol to defend my property and life therefore i know what you say is true especially about add on safety add ons, sad but true thats why i got away from my old 1911 a1, but that gun did lay the path for all the great guns of today! Like you say a glock is the best hobby kit pistol you can buy and i am even a owner but for the money, my first line of defence pistol is a box stock 229 sig, i can draw faster and shoot better with it than any pistol i have ever owned! Personal protection shooting is just that, sights are for the range. In my experience i just asume take them off! My last encounter was a trespasser at 15 feet, i saw him in my camera and when i openened the door he got into the charge stance, i drew on him and fired a warning shot at his feet and you never saw a man run so fast, i yelled: next time well be washing your brains down the gutter! The shot was placed in a planter next to the driveway where he stood. I dont know what exactly what it is, but my sig brings out a confidence in me i wish i could bottle it and sell it, id be rich! The glock is the only second. Thank You, Big George
  9. ReplyWillie
    Glock 30. Ghost connector fitted. KKH pistol barrel (in case of shooting lead bullets). Non captured guide rod and heaver recoil spring (appropriate for the self defense loads I use). Finally XS big dot inline night sights. Rest is factory glock. 45 acp in this baby glock kicks. Not a gun to blow off a lot of rounds in, but shoot enough to remain very proficient. Shoot my wife's sig p245 for fun.

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