Glock, Glock, Glock, you own the market, and you know it. Glock’s popular pistols dominate the law enforcement and concealed carry world, and heck, a vast number of military forces carry Gaston Glock’s plastic fantastic. Glock’s entry into the single stack world started years ago and continues to this day with the latest two guns, the G43X and the G48. Today we are taking a peek at the very irregular Glock 43X.
The Glock 43 was a real winner for Glock and marked the first time they designed a single stack 9mm. Glock expanded on this concept, and I mean that both literally and figuratively. They expanded the single stack grip to accommodate a ten-round magazine rather than a six-round magazine. When they were released, I saw the point of the Glock 48, and it was a single stack Glock 19 essentially.
The Glock 43X left me perplexed in its design. It utilized the same barrel length as a Glock 43 but the grip length of a Glock 19. That’s what drew me to the gun, and I needed to find out exactly why the G43X exists. So I got my hands on one and hit the ground running. Well, I guess I should say I hit the range running.
Glock 43X – First Impressions
The Glock 43X looks odd and reminds me of that N-frame S&W 8 shot revolver. It’s got a big grip but a stubby little barrel. We get a short slide with a 3.41-inch long barrel with an overall length of 6.05 inches. With an empty mag, the gun weighs a light 18.7 ounces. It’s 5.04 inches tall, and the grip absolutely fills my hand.
I won’t lie, it’s quite comfy in hand. I hate a hanging pinky, and the Glock 43X doesn’t leave my little digit ignored. However, it’s no pocket pistol. Don’t expect to shove this thing into a sticky holster in your pocket. It’s too big for that, but not too big for a standard holster. At its widest, the gun is 1.10 inches wide, and it’ll fit right into an IWB or AIWB holster naturally and comfortably.
These single stack magazines hold ten rounds and fit flush inside the grip. I’m not going to lie, and this isn’t impressive to me. The SIG P365 is shorter and holds the same amount of rounds. However, the Shield S-15 magazines pack a punch with 15 rounds in a flush-fitting magazine. However, that’s an aftermarket option and not something Glock came up with.
Finally, as you’d expect, you get the same Glock sights Glock has always used. If I was going to change one thing on this gun, it’s the sights. To hell with them! Why Glock clings to this idea of cheap plastic sights on combat pistols blows my mind.
At the Range with the Glock 43X
The gun comes with two magazines, and I loaded them up to capacity and hit the range. While I complain about the sights, they are functional on a square range. At 15 yards, I began practicing with some headshots from the low ready. That poor IPSC target didn’t stand a chance, and he’s now resigned himself to a short life of being a paper target. The sights are easy to see and track between shots, and scoring accurate hammer pairs made it fairly easy to engage the target rapidly at this range.
After I warmed up, I began shooting one of my favorite drills, Dot torture. Dot Torture tests a wide variety of skills, including slow fire, one-handed shooting, drawing, reloading, and more. It gives you great training and is a great way to evaluate a firearm. I blasted my way through the Dot Torture target and shot it almost perfectly clean. My biggest weakness being one-handed shooting with my non-dominant hand.
I ran through Dot Torture and felt impressed with the Glock 43X. In the accuracy department, I had zero issues putting 9mm holes into those two-inch circles. The big grip made the gun very easy to control, and I’ll admit the short barrel made the weapon well balanced for one-handed shooting.
Recoil is slightly snappy, but no more so than any other small firearm. The weapon was extremely comfortable to shoot due to that long grip and also easy to draw. The big grip made establishing a good, solid grip on the gun possible before I drew.
Built For Comfort
I committed several different drills with the Glock 43X. I ran four gongs in under five seconds, shot a decent failure to stop drill, and passed a 10-10-10 drill. Admittedly I just barely passed the 10-10-10 drill, but I passed, dang it! My hand never felt beat up, beat down, or tired. The gun never failed, faltered, or gave up on me either. It’s got that Glock reliability we all know and love.
Over the next few hundred rounds, I came to a realization. This is a gun built for comfort. It’s comfortable to shoot and easy to carry. The shorter barrel pokes and prods less than most and provides a weapon that’s comfortable to carry. The Glock 43X’s longer grips make it easier to control and less snappy than most.
It’s all about comfort. In all honesty, it’s a great option for new concealed carriers and those who are looking for a competent firearm that’s just comfy. The shorter barrel ensures you can comfortably carry the weapon in any way you choose, including OWB. When carried outside the waistband, the shorter barrel keeps the weapon concealed, but the big grip makes it easy to grip, rip, and rock and roll.
Keep The Gun Comfy
The Glock 43X provides shooters with a compact, easy to carry, and easy to shoot firearm that also inhabits that famed Glock reliability. I started confused by why the gun exists, but now I get it. Why couldn’t a concealed carry gun be focused on being comfortable and competent?
That’s exactly what the Glock 43X accomplishes.
It’s admittedly not as impressively small and as competent as the Micro Compact firearms, but it’s carved its place into the concealed carry world. What say you? Does the Glock 4A3X appeal to you? Let me know below.