Top Five Glock Enhancements

Glock: It ain’t broke but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enhance it.

Editor’s Note: The following is a post by Mark Kakkuri, a nationally published freelance writer who covers guns and gear, 2nd Amendment issues and the outdoors. His writing and photography have appeared in many firearms-related publications, including the USCCA’s Concealed Carry Magazine. You can follow him on Twitter @markkakkuri.

Read Mark’s previous articles in this “Top Five” series:

There’s nothing like a new Glock, right out of the factory box: reliable, accurate, awesome. In fact, the only thing better — in certain circumstances — is an old Glock with key enhancements.

The “certain circumstances” that make it better are these: It’s my Glock and I want to prove that a gun that was described as “perfection” in the company’s marketing actually isn’t. It can be further perfected…or at least brought closer to my kind of perfect.

Granted, choosing the perfect handgun is a very subjective matter. Perfect for me might not be perfect for you. Further, customizing a single handgun might make it better for me but not for you. Regardless, here are my top five Glock enhancements — changes I’ve made to my Model 19 that have stood the test of time.

1. Home Stippling

If you’re willing to void the warranty on your gun and perhaps risk making a mistake that could render your gun inoperable or even dangerous, a home stippling job will prove you’re either a lunatic or a gifted artist and engineer. I’ve stippled the stocks on my Model 19 no less than three times using a hot soldering iron with a variety of tips. I’m not claiming artist or engineer status, but, so far, I’ve improved purchase and the gun still works like it did from the factory.

If you’re OK with the risk, it’s a fun project. Just field strip your empty gun, heat up a soldering iron and work under a bright task light. Gently press the hot tip of the soldering iron into the polymer for about one second — the plastic will instantly form a dimple. Pull away and continue along an edge or line marked by blue painter’s tape. When complete, gently sand away the plastic “hairs” and you’re done. Unless you want to try a different pattern or feel.

2. Heavy Tungsten Guide Rod

Now that I’ve got a better grip on my gun, the next step is to see if I can further improve its shootability by adding weight. The Model 19 is not a heavy gun by any stretch so, by adding a Heavy Tungsten Guide Rod — available for $49.95 from GlockStore.com — I’ll be tripling the weight of the factory guide rod to 59.29 grams. This is a drop-in part, replaced via a simple field strip. And frankly, the Heavy Tungsten Guide Rod feels far more robust than the factory guide rod. It fits perfectly, doesn’t appreciably change the feel of the slide movement and is otherwise invisible to the user.

When shooting, there’s a noticeable improvement: The muzzle flip — what little there is with a 9mm — reduces even more and you’re back on target in an instant. After years of shooting my Model 19 with this part installed, I’ve never had a single problem and never had any desire to switch back.

3. Apex Action Enhancement Red Trigger & Gen 3 Trigger Bar for Glock

With my Glock 19 so grippable and more shootable, the next natural replacement item is the stock trigger and trigger bar. Here a field strip and detail strip are needed as well as some careful insertion of the new parts. It’s a more complex operation but very doable. Operation is still the same: Squeeze the trigger and the gun will fire.

Apex says your results will include the following:
• Direct drop-in replacement of factory polymer trigger
• Reduces trigger overtravel and reset distance
• Smooth uptake and reset
• Crisp trigger break
• Center mounted pivoting safety maintains factory safety values

It’s true. They’re all happening with this $104.95 part. If you’re not keen on the red color of the trigger, other colors are available.

4. Apex Safety Plunger

The Apex trigger upgrade is good but gets even better when you pair it with the Apex Safety Plunger. This $17.95 part replaces the Glock factory safety plunger but requires additional detail stripping to make it happen. Again, complex but doable. Now the new trigger bar is interacting with a new safety plunger and the combo simply results in a much smoother action. In thousands of rounds fired, I’ve only got more proof that these systems work as well, if not better, than their factory counterparts.

5. Customizations by Robar

At this point, I’ve made about $173 in customizations to my Glock 19 that make it more perfect for me. I’m not into spending additional money on one gun when that money could be used to buy another gun or ammo or other accessories, but in the case of the Glock, it’s been such a great gun that it’s worth it. I think.

So, it’s off to Robar to make it truly unique. We’re talking forward cocking serrations ($145), bullnose front of slide ($85), a gunmetal gray finish with NP3 internals, including a barrel ($160) and, just for good measure, having Robar engrave their Semper Vinco logo on the right side of the pistol slide ($50). That’s $440 to pretty much guarantee that this Glock 19 is good-looking, functional and one-of-a-kind. We can argue all day long about how truly necessary any of these might have been — especially the Robar logo — but it’s my gun and I think it’s pretty cool.

The only other changes I’ve made to my Model 19 include adding an Arachnigrip to the rear of the slide and replacing the factory sights with night sights. I’ve been through a few different makes, but the current set is XS Big Dot. More on other accessories and night sights in a future article…

What are your favorite Glock enhancements? Or, what gun is truly perfect for you right out of the factory?

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{ 9 comments… add one }
  • 1lostpoke November 5, 2017, 8:05 pm

    I would not worry about improving a quality gun, worry about being able to buy and keep it.

  • Tom November 3, 2017, 2:31 pm

    Sold my trusty G19 a few years ago for a G23 AND added a storm lake drop in 9mm SS conversion barrel. Big plus being able to shoot either caliber. Storm lake makes an excellent barrel and I am super pleased. IMHO, a lot of these add ons are gimmicks and I understand why folks want them but there is a reason it is called “glock perfection”. If you use your weapon for self defense, it is a wise decision to avoid gimics like this. If you end up in court, it will be hell to pay. Just my 2cents, your mileage may vary.

  • Jerry K Brown November 3, 2017, 1:42 pm

    Didn’t even mention sights, especially “metal” quality night sights? For me, that would be very first enhancement!
    Tru-Glo TFO or TFX would be my choice, combining fiber optic with tritium; and fiber optic vials are “buried” in metal, so you don’t bump or break vials. In an actual self defense situation it is likely you will not be responding in you preferred, “at the range”, shooting stance, like inside vehicle during carjack, even on the ground if knocked down suddently, Crimson Trace grips are on ALL my guns; except earlier Kahr PM9 that has CT mounted to underside of dustcover and trigger guard. I have Gen 4 23,27; and 35 with aftermarket trigger/connector only in 23. 35 is supposed to come from factory with 3.5 lb trigger.

    Personally, I like having multiple caliber capability, which is why all are 40, also with 9mm conversion barrel and 357 Sig barrel, definite enhancements in my book! Just bought a Tactical Solutions 22 conversion kit with threaded barrel for 23: but don’t think I will for 27 or 35.

    Just my opinion, but think these enhancements are more useful than those mentioned; except Apex trigger!

  • Mike Simonsen November 3, 2017, 12:41 pm

    I had my Glock 19 worked on at ATEi (https://ateiguns.com/). I had them remove the finger grooves, enhance the stippling, undercut the trigger guard, replace the trigger with an Overwatch TAC trigger, add a Trigicon RMR and suppressor sights, deepen the rear slide serrations, and add slide serrations on the front sides and top. I added a KKM precision match barrel and dropped it in. It took a bit of practice to fully take advantage of the RMR, but this is my EDC and I’m extremely happy with it now.

  • Jim November 3, 2017, 9:14 am

    I improved my glock by selling it and replacing with a CZ P10C and I didn’t have to do any of the enhancements, they had already been done.

  • Steve November 3, 2017, 8:13 am

    It seems to me that the author forgot what I consider to be two of the most important alterations, an extended mag release and an extended slide release. The only mod that he has done that I might consider is the aftermarket trigger. The factory safety plunger can be polished to achieve the same results as the Apex.

  • Civilian Defense Concepts November 3, 2017, 5:32 am

    Save the money on these \”enhancements\”. Spend the money on training. Good qualified training can help you run the gun extremely well in stock condition. It doesn\’t devalue. It doesn\’t break. Good, qualified training will make you a better all around shooter.If your software is good, the hardware won\’t matter much. People need to stop throwing hardware fixes at what\’s essentially a hardware problem.

    • Jeff Arthur November 3, 2017, 8:41 am

      +1 on training, best enhancement there is. It enhances ALL YOUR firearms

  • TRUBRIT November 2, 2017, 8:26 am

    I epoxy filled the back strap and removed the bump. Undercut the trigger guard and sanded off the factory grip pattern. Added Silicon Carbide 60/90 followed by three coats of Duracoat. The black duracoat covers the ‘Stripper Glitter’ look and softens the feel from that of rough sand paper. Still way more grip than factory. I went with the Silicon Carbide rather than the stippling as I am not a fan of the stippling look.

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