Glock’s G44: Tupperware Goes Rimfire

The author absolutely hating his job of shooting thousands of rounds of 22LR.

Buy a Glock 44 on GunsAmerica!

Glock 44 Initial Review

Glock has finally stepped into the rimfire game, something that I personally have been waiting for. This is a training tool that rounds out the Glock family in a way nothing else could. I want to be very upfront about our review here at GunsAmerica of this new model. We have seen via other reviewers, some of whom I know personally, some problems develop with certain G44 guns. To head this off at the pass, and get you firsthand scoop, we decided we had to run the G44 hard. So hard in fact, that the video portion had to be broken into two parts. Our first half, which is already 14 minutes long, covers the first thousand rounds, over 8 brands of ammo. You can fast forward to the 12-minute mark if you just want the executive summary. Next week we will be back with the next thousand rounds, which takes us to the point many others had issues. If they were going to have them.

G44 boxed up.

First of all, we have to talk about the engineering of the gun. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the recoil impulse and available energy of a 22 Long Rifle round is different than any centerfire handgun bullet. Therefore, to make one work, basic physics says you can move less mass. Other handgun companies seeking to make a rimfire version of their flagship pistol have solved this in different ways historically. Method one is to scale down the entire gun to something like 75% size. This is cool for kids but doesn’t help a grown man much. Method two is to take an existing 22 pistol and slap a plastic shell around it to look like your gun. It looks aesthetically correct, but it doesn’t feel right. In the hand, or when firing, which I am also not a fan of.

This one is all Glock.

The aftermarket also sometimes has a solution; a conversion kit. The normal method is to take a handguns steel slide and remake it from aluminum. This cuts down the weight significantly, while not changing the feel or look of the gun. But it also has drawbacks. Some have the sights milled in as a weight savings, which means you are stuck with them. Considering that is the first thing we usually change on a Glock, a less than ideal end state. And I have also never had great success with them. Perfect if you want to train malfunctions, not so great for anything else.

So how did Glock solve the problem? In a way that was ingeniously simple, a trademark Glock move. Some 40-pound forehead engineer must’ve thought, “Polymer is even lighter than aluminum, who do we know that makes excellent polymers?” And then he tripped over a Glock box and had an epiphany. (The infamous Glock storage box is also made in house, in case you ever need to play Combat Tupperware Jeopardy.)

Slide internals.

The slide on the G44 is in fact polymer, with some magic blended in. Polymer is fantastically strong, in certain applications. It also has the benefit of flexing a bit under torque, which gives it incredible durability. It happens faster than the human eye can perceive, but do go watch a Glock firing under slow-motion video. The frame actually moves in a wave. Either a happy accident or more of Gaston’s genius, this is part of what gives a Glock its durability. As we now know well after close to four decades, a Glock frame will outlast a steel frame by a long shot.

One of the few things polymer won’t outlast steel on is abrasion resistance. Which is obviously a problem since the slide is a moving part on a semi-auto pistol. Even your centerfire Glock in the nightstand has steel rails built into the frame, which is what the steel slide rides on. A purely plastic slide would last about 20 minutes before it was worn down to a nub. So how to solve this problem?

Steel slide rail visible.

Simple. They reverse-engineered how the traditional Glock frame works and applied it to the slide. In front of the rear sight is a steel insert, that extends down to full-length steel slide rails. Which pretty much makes the G44 a polymer, steel, polymer sandwich. And also makes the slide incredibly light.

Then comes the truly amazing part. Slide weight aside, Glock managed to build a rimfire that looks and feels EXACTLY like a real boy gun. When you pop the gun apart, it would be easy to mistake the internals for any other Glock. Firing pin block, slide release, trigger components- all familiar. The ejector body may have a bit more angle, but its the same basic part. And the barrel even has a square chamber end, making it look like any other small frame. Until you take it out and it looks like a piece of spaghetti with a meatball on the end. That is not an indictment, as the accuracy in the gun doesn’t suffer for it.

Same size mag well as a G19.

We could wax eloquent about the finish and grip texture now if you like, but I don’t think that helps anyone. For all intents and purposes, it is a Gen 5 Glock 19 down chambered to 22 LR. I’m quite confident you have held a G-19, and if not that is an easy fix. It has the same Gen 5 trigger as the other guns, which translates like this. The trigger is better than a factory Gen3, but out of the box, still not a race-tuned 1911. Fair enough?

What does help, and what we all want to know, is does it perform. We are also going to take an unorthodox position on that this time, especially since we are two months behind some other reviews you might have seen. Here are the facts.

Chamber end of barrel and recoil spring.

Number one, I am a Glock fan, generally speaking. I used them as race guns in both USPSA and 3 Gun, and I carried one daily assaulting targets in Baghdad. Then I trained a generation of assaulters on the Glock platform to do the same. Hell, I have even been on a Glock poster.

I’m on the right, much younger and skinnier.

But if you have been a regular reader, you also know I brook no BS. No quarter asked, none given if you make a bad gun. I almost got blackballed from the industry for nuking a major player’s intro to polymer guns, and I regret none of it. I also own several Gen3 Glocks, and one Gen5 Glock, but no Gen4 Glocks. Draw your own conclusions there.

A Google search of G44 problems turns up 4 potential issues, all of which we have addressed. First, some people said that the gun wouldn’t shoot their normal 22LR ammo. This would be a problem for me personally if it was true. I don’t want to buy Eley 10X for my handgun. Also, Glock built an entire company reputation on reliability. I expect the 22LR to be the same. Because of that, I bought 8 brands of ammunition. Ranging from subsonic to hypervelocity, that is a fair test to me. If we weren’t in an ammo crunch, I would do even more.

Right from magazine number one, with no lube beside the copper color grease new Glocks wear, my G44 ran like a sewing machine. The first 6 brands no issue, at two full magazines each, with not so much as a hiccup. That was Gem-tech subs, CCI, Federal in a couple of flavors, and Blazer. It would not eat the Winchester or Remington bulk I had. But still, 6 out of 8 is pretty amazing. Through the next 1000 rounds, I had zero issues with the 6 it liked. Not one malfunction, which would be amazing at that round count in centerfire.

Adjustable sights standard.

I heard some complaints about accuracy, people swearing the G44 shot 7-inches high. My test model would hit a 2 inch by 2-inch steel mini IPSC head every time I pulled the trigger correctly, at 10 meters. Out of the box, it was a smidge left, but it is also wearing adjustable sights. I find that level of accuracy 100% acceptable, and well beyond the ability of most shooters. I only had one test gun, and therefore only one data sample. But from what I see, the problem probably isn’t the gun.

Next, we saw some allegations that the polymer slide was cracking. Well, that is why we ran 1000 rounds out of it, and have 1000 more on tap. For our test gun, a post-shooting tear down showed absolutely no abnormal wear or signs of failure. This also covered the thought that perhaps the firing pin wasn’t durable enough. Ours showed no wear or signs of problems.

No issues with our polymer slide.

In light of the durability test, we will be back next week with a final tally. But so far, so good.

I think right now we can go ahead and draw some conclusions. As a training tool, the G44 is absolutely perfect. It allows you to get thousands and thousands of training rounds downrange, without being sponsored by Uncle Sugar. It fits in your holster, and magazines in magazine pouches. It feels like a Glock, it shoots like a Glock, and it runs like a Glock. If Combat Tupperware is your duty gun, home defense gun, or CCW gun, you absolutely need this. I don’t buy review guns often, but there is about a zero chance Glock is getting this one back. I suggest you do the same.

Upper subparts.
Glock backstraps.
Glock to the core.

For more information visit Glock website.

Buy a Glock 44 on GunsAmerica!

About the author: Clay Martin is a former Marine and Green Beret, retiring out of 3rd Special Forces Group. He is a multi-decade and -service sniper, as well as 3-Gun competitor and Master ranked shooter in USPSA Production. In addition to writing about guns, he is the author of “Last Son of The War God,” a novel about shooting people that deserve it. You can also follow him on twitter, @offthe_res or his website, Off-The-Reservation.com

{ 34 comments… add one }
  • nomen nescio April 21, 2020, 7:44 pm

    “My test model would hit a 2 inch by 2-inch steel mini IPSC head every time I pulled the trigger correctly, at 10 meters. Out of the box, it was a smidge left, but it is also wearing adjustable sights. I find that level of accuracy 100% acceptable, and well beyond the ability of most shooters. ”

    The X ring on a B27 is 2″ wide by 3″ tall. I would hope that most shooters can hit something that large at 10m with a handgun!

  • Bill April 17, 2020, 3:48 pm

    From a 20 year military and a subsequent 20 years as a LEO I can clearly see the benefit of this weapon as a training tool. Having a firearm relative in operation, construction, size and feel to the service weapon employed is huge. It does take frequency to maintain overall proficiency. I think we’re all pretty much on the same page in that point. For many the cost can be prohibitive. There’s serious merit in the statement made “not having Uncle Sugar as your sponsor”. This firearm makes it possible to send the needed 1k rounds a month down range and not go broke in the process. On a closing point It would be nice if Glock produced a mag that didn’t cost a bundle, making it somewhat prohibitive to dump e’m on the concrete. I still prefer all metal mag’s.

  • mclark April 14, 2020, 3:47 pm

    what has Glock had to say about the magazine capacity? There seems to be enough room for many more rounds. An engineering issue, magazine capacity issue in some parts of the country?

  • Pat J April 14, 2020, 11:20 am

    I got into Glocks because my first Glock was on sale a long time ago.
    I’ve put well over 100,000 rounds through my G21, G30 and G20, G29 models, and own a conversion kit for the G30. Fortunately I also own a Dillon.
    A man can get used to anything, like Glock triggers. I’m buying a G44 after reading this reviewer.

  • Ted April 13, 2020, 5:01 pm

    It only worked with 6 of the 8 types. Hmm, that means that it only worked with 75% of the ammo tested. And the ammo that it didnt work with was 2 top brands. This is NOT the same as any of the Glock pistols i own. All of my Glocks “eat” anything that i feed them , SO FAR !

    • Steve Basler April 14, 2020, 6:47 am

      So I own a couple .22lr handguns, and Walther P22, and Sig mosquito. I experience malfunctions with Winchester, Remington, and Eley ammo. I would not be able to criticize Glock for their gun not liking cheap ammo.

  • Brian April 13, 2020, 4:36 pm

    It’s a good article I’m gonna buy one. It’s seems great for target shooting. If it’s like my other 22s because it has low kickback you can send more shots down range with accuracy Everybody thinks you need large caliber to kill a bad guy. But the 22 LR will do the job. 22 s shot into the head go thru the skull, brain then hit the other side and bounce back into the brain. Even when it enters the chest or neck it can and has caused death. Don’t underestimate a 22.

  • Old Beast April 13, 2020, 4:24 pm

    What’s everyone’s deal with the 10 round mag? Ruger Mark series pistols have always come with a 10 round mag and nobody says anything about that, and they cost just as much! S&W victory 22’s have a 10 round also along with almost every other semi auto 22 pistol.

  • Steve Grife April 13, 2020, 2:43 pm

    Y’all are losing me on the “not enough rounds in the mag” perspective. Do you practice 15 round mag dumps and that’s why you need more than 10? I shoot 17 & 23 round mags in competition and either reload when I’m empty or plan a stage accordingly depending on the discipline/stage (you don’t get to do this in real life). Using a smaller mag is no different. You use it to practice your draw, double taps, target transitions, etc. If you’re not mentally flexible enough to work with 10 rounds I’d hate to see how you melt down in a gun fight. Maybe someone can explain to me exactly why 10 rounds is such a deal breaker? PS, I don’t own a Glock 44.

  • Gregory G Evans April 13, 2020, 1:35 pm

    I bought one a month ago and in the middle of the third magazine the extractor fell out. I was unable to find it. I have attempted to contact Glock but due to the Covid 19 shutdown I have not received a reply. I will keep on trying. Any ideas?

  • DARKWING April 13, 2020, 1:18 pm

    Hey, Clay put out some dope to ya. If it ain’t yer cup o soup, don’t sit at the table. I remember being stationed in FRG in 60-62 with my father. He had a book at the time that would have been information about training the likes of present day special forces. It talked about how they needed to be familiar with any weapon they might come across in a battle zone and might have to use due to lack of their own weapon. Be it 5,10, belt fed or 1 round, bolt or auto. Shoulder fired weapon or a type of thrown weapon. The point is, any thing that will put a projectile down a tube was/is a weapon. If you were being assaulted and a Glock 44 were laying there, would you pass on it because it was a 10 stack .22.

    • clay martin April 14, 2020, 10:38 am

      not in the slightest. while 22LR isn’t my first choice, I would absolutely choose it over a slingshot, spear, brass knuckles, or bad breath.

  • Don April 13, 2020, 12:50 pm

    If you want to test a pistol , put it in a rental case at a public range. We ( the owner and I ) took sweep-ups of any brand loaded the NEW ( never ever worked ) G-44 ,and shot it . Instant love . It burned thru anything you could stuff in it. SOLD

  • Jerry Antrim April 13, 2020, 12:20 pm

    Just another ugly black plastic pistol in an over crowded field. Who needs it ? There are several really nice revolvers out there-single or double action. Why own an ugly gun ? Go play Rambo somewhere else.

    • Old Beast April 13, 2020, 4:16 pm

      Why did you even read the article then? Go troll somewhere else!

    • JazmoAZ April 13, 2020, 9:57 pm

      Jerry, Rambo never shoots a Glock. Either you don’t know much about Rambo, or all “ugly black pistols” look alike to you…

  • Robert Wade April 13, 2020, 11:28 am

    I like the review, think this is probably a fair summary, especially if you like Glocks in the first place. I happen to think the Taurus is a better gun. Over 3500 rounds fired, not a SINGLE FTF or FTE. I know people say long term the Taurus will fail, QC is bad, CS is bad, etc. I can only speak of one gun, mine, and at this point it serves me well.

  • dave brown April 13, 2020, 11:09 am

    Some of USA just like to whine, and we would whine if we got hung with a used rope. I have been training since age 12, had a draft # of 252 in 1970 to Nam, and got the right to vote and drink 3.2 beer legally in SD the same year. So shooting since 12 or 55 years, and the truth is shooting before 12, but the early years don’t count. I am not a big Glock Guy, but they are a great gun. As for only 10rd mag, this and that whining just go play with your Glock the way you want to, and let those of US that know the Joy of just having Fun with a 22 shoot the crap out of it. I have taught my kids and their friends to shoot with a 22, and now it is time to teach my Grand Buds, both Girls to shoot starting with a 22. So far they both have some guns coming their way, Wilkison Arms 22lf mini, and the 9mm from The Plant Of The Apes, and of course life would not be complete without their TakeDown Rugers. My Old Ruger has be around for about 50 years so they cannot have that. Anyway, point is WE all know so many of U are The Best Gunners Around, and also The Best Whinners. Enjoy ur shooting and you will become part of the gun that you have in your hand at the moment in time. God Bless Us All, even that clown over there………….

  • Frank Dilatush April 13, 2020, 10:48 am

    I always enjoy your reviews Clay and this was no exception. Got a G44 a month ago and for $375 all in I think it’s a marvelous value. Haven’t had a chance to wring it out as you have but all indications are that it’s going to be a fine little mouse gun.

    As far as magazine capacity I’d rather have dependable feed on a rimmed cartridge than put up with FF/FEs for the sake of an extra 5 rounds.

    Semper Fi,

    Frank

  • R Brown April 13, 2020, 10:11 am

    Last thot. The 22 does not replace the CF in training. I use it for draws, double/triple taps, reload and FTF drills, and transitioning between multiple targets, then finish with my G17 CF. It supplements your training with CF, does not replace it. And it was only some $300 with no paperwork. And its fun to shoot when all you want is a gun that is fun to shoot. 10 round mag, no problem.

  • Lonny O. April 13, 2020, 9:57 am

    Great read bud.

  • R Brown April 13, 2020, 9:53 am

    I have been using an Advantage Arms conversion kit for over seven years. Aluminum slide on a G17 frame. Love the gun and have shot the poop out of it. I try to shoot every week. Use it as part of my of self defense drills to shave the cost of ammo. It is 99.9% reliable and damn accurate. 22 LR is dirty but this kit does not need to be spotless to run reliably , I use only Remington Golden Bullet and the restricted ammo requirement might be its only limitation. Remington and CCI only instructions say. Cannot say enough good things about it. A great alternative and maybe a better alternative than the G44.

  • Big John April 13, 2020, 9:52 am

    Welcome back Brother, hope all is well- you’re looking good, thanks for the review…enjoyed it.

  • Slim April 13, 2020, 8:35 am

    Not a bad review, but I as well am not sold on the lame single stack 10 round mag. A mag fed gun is only as good as its capacity in my eyes and then rounds in a real world situation is just not enough. I don’t see the benefit of buying this $450 plus shipping fees that’s are always $40 plus and FFL fees which are in my area $30 per gun even if you buy ten it’s still 30 each! Just not worth it when the end result is the same price as a real deal big boy GLOCK that would absolutely resell so much faster than a fun\training aid 22LR. pistol.

    • 1911cdp April 13, 2020, 10:35 am

      You seem to be missing the “training tool” aspect. You can train with gun and send 1000’s of rounds downrange for pennies on the dollar.

    • Jake April 13, 2020, 2:54 pm

      I wager you are wrong about which would sell faster used.

  • Robert P Hall April 13, 2020, 8:00 am

    10 round is a Deal Breaker …Too Bad!

  • Will Drider April 13, 2020, 2:01 am

    A handgun getting accolades as a “Trainer” for your CF Glocks. However, it fails miserably since you can’t fire the same Shot Strings due to the 10 round capacity. All that G19 equivalent magwell volumn and Glock single stack ten rounds. No double or off-set stack? Keltec did it so long ago twith the .22 mag thd Patent is expired! Would you buy an AR Trainer that was limited to 10 round capacity mag if you weren’t in a gun grabber State? Hell No!

    In the video, you mentioned the capacity shortfall and maybe Glock (or Pmag) will address it. Until that time, it’s a deal breaker for me. Train as you fight, not train with 10 and adlib: I can adlib with any .22LR pistol and not bother buying a G44.

    • Bob Clark April 13, 2020, 6:30 am

      Yep.

    • FAL Phil April 13, 2020, 6:31 am

      Train as you fight? That would mean training with the same recoil and sight picture recovery. Not possible with a rimfire – unless you fight with a rimfire. The G44 is a great training tool for someone starting out, making the transition to centerfire easier. Be honest. If you train as you fight, you train with the tools you fight with.

    • MagnumOpUS April 13, 2020, 7:05 am

      Good point.

    • Link Lackluster April 13, 2020, 9:51 am

      Dumb. Buy more magazines. It’s about the shooting. At least you’ll get more magazine change practice. I’d respect Clay’s views over your “My magazines don’t have enough rounds!” narrow view any day.

      • Jake April 13, 2020, 3:08 pm

        I’m with you on that. My Walther PPQ M2 .22LR has mags with “only” 12 rounds while my Q5’s have 15 rounders and I can even use 20 rd. Canik mags in them. I guess I should get rid of it and get what?
        This brings up a new problem. What to do with my ten round and six round .22 K frames. After all, I have no 10 round .357’s, but I do have a seven and a six. What to do? LOL!
        You guys who think some fella shooting hundreds or thousands of rounds of .22 in practice is not more likely than not to put the first round on target when you hand him a centerfire are fooling yourselves.

    • Scott April 13, 2020, 4:38 pm

      I like Glock’s. I am their biggest fan. I’m with you though Mr Will Drider. Glock screwed the pooch with dumb capacity in the 42/43 too so nothing new here, they’ll just lose market share to KT and the Brazil crew, like they lost to SIG’s P365. Glock cares not though, because….Glock….and Glock knows best and also knows most Glock owners would even buy it if the magazine capacity was five rounds, which would only be one less than their idiotic capacity decision on the two aforementioned models. I bet it was even considered by their engineering team. So they will only sell five million 44’s instead of six million. No big deal to them. Still, the whole back and forth on magazine capacity is amusingly similar to the back and forth on many things until opinions meet reality. No-one wants less rounds when SHTF. Then again most negative points about range toys are moot. Except the capacity point, that one is right on. Because less capacity is not more with handguns, less is dumb. Anyways, yay Glock. I bought my first one in 1988, and I’ll be carrying and shooting it until I’m dead, unlike the 1911’s and M9’s I had to use for work. Nice article as usual and thank you for your service. And I’m not bitter about Glocks stupid design capacity deficit as of late, just annoyed.

Leave a Comment

Send this to a friend