Finally. GLOCK has introduced the GLOCK .22. Well, the GLOCK 22 has been around for a long time, but that was chambered in .40 Smith & Wesson. Now the GLOCK .22 (as in .22 long rifle) is available as the GLOCK 44.
My head is spinning with these numbers and the internet is abuzz with GLOCK’s announcement. It seems to be primarily folks poking fun at the new rimfire pistol. I can see where the chuckles come from. Heck, I even joined in on a bit of the mockery, but in reality, I think the GLOCK 44 chambered in .22lr is going to be a hot seller.
Let’s take a look at what the GLOCK 44 is and why I think it will be a success.
What is the GLOCK 44?
If you think about a GLOCK 19 chambered in .22 lr with a polymer slide and a 10 round magazine, you pretty much nailed what the Glock 44 is.
I haven’t had the chance to handle or shoot a 44 yet, but based on the information GLOCK shared about the pistol the outside dimensions are virtually identical to the 19. The only measurements that seem to vary are the overall length, (it looks like the barrel doesn’t protrude quite as far from the front of the slide), the trigger reach (which is .04 inches shorter than a 19), and the overall weight which is the only significant departure in the technical data between the two pistols. The 19 weighs in at around 23 ounces where the Glock 44 tips the scales a full half-pound less at about 14 ounces.
The difference in weight is a result of the use of polymer for the slide of the pistol instead of the GLOCK 19’s steel slide. The use of polymer makes a ton of sense in my opinion yet it seems to be one of the easy to chide aspects of the gun. The .22 lr generates significantly less force than a 9mm. As a result, the slide needs to be significantly lighter for the GLOCK 44 to function. In aftermarket conversion kits the light weight is achieved by using aluminum. GLOCK, staying true to form and capitalizing on the likely high volume of sales, used plastic. I mean they make plastic guns so…
Of course the GLOCK 19 has a magazine capacity of 15 +1 with lots of other options available, while the 44 is available in a 10 +1 configuration at this time.
The most obvious difference between the GLOCK 19 (I feel bad that I’m completely ignoring the G23…) and the GLOCK 44 is caliber. GLOCK has always been focused on calibers that are ready to do work. Defensive work, duty work. .22 long rifle isn’t either of those things so why in the world would GLOCK make a .22?
Why is the GLOCK 44 a Good Idea?
I think there are plenty of good reasons that GLOCK has invested the time, effort and energy in building a .22 and I think there are plenty of reasons why consumers are going to snatch these guns up. Let’s be real. The guns say GLOCK on them and for the Austrian companies fan base that is often the only requirement for purchase.
I think there is probably more to it.
A GLOCK 19 Clone in .22 LR
The GLOCK 19 is one of the most popular guns in the world. Having the ability to shoot .22 lr out of a Glock 19 is something people have been making happen for years by buying conversion kits. Advantage Arms has been making .22 lr conversion kits for all kinds of GLOCKs for years. They retail for around $299.00 and are comprised of an aluminum slide and a couple of 10 round mags.
The 44 has an MSRP of $430. When you consider the value of having an entire gun instead of just a slide and mags for just $130 more, it seems like a solid value.
Having a .22 that mimics your GLOCK 19 has a lot of advantages:
- Practicing and training at a reduced cost.
- Introducing new shooters to a defensive platform without recoil and report
- The use of all your GLOCK accessories including your holster
- Hearing safe suppressed shooting (a threaded barrel option is in the works)
- Hunting small game with a clone of your carry gun.
You get the idea. There are plenty of reasons why the GLOCK 44 makes sense as a clone of the 19.
One of the most notable aspects of GLOCK pistols is the reliability that they provide. Again, I haven’t tested this myself, but the word is that the 44 is going to be a reliable gun. G22s are routinely unreliable pistols due to the wide variation in ammo quality. I hope the GLOCK 44 runs like a GLOCK.
G44 Aftermarket Support
There are plenty of .22s out there, and some have solid aftermarket support, but none will compare with the aftermarket support that is already in place for the 44. Remember, pretty much anything 19 will work with the 44. Sights, holsters, mag pouches, etc. This aftermarket support makes the purchase more attractive and at the same time reduces the need for additional purchases for those that already own a 19. Of course the GLOCK 44 magazine is different. It has a ten round capacity instead of the 19’s 15 rounds.
A Real Trigger on a .22
GLOCKs aren’t known for amazing triggers, but they are certainly serviceable. Unless you get into a single action .22, most rimfire pistol triggers are pretty unpleasant. When my two daughters started shooting handguns I spent some cash on .22s in search of something that was light enough for them to hold and had a trigger light enough for them to press. We settled on the 10 round S&W M&P .22 Compact, but the triggers were so so and the reliability was what I expected for a .22.
It seems that we can expect a GLOCK trigger to come with the 44. In the case of my kids the reach is probably still too long for it to be workable, but for the general population that is the normal size, I think the 44 is going to serve them well when it comes to the trigger.
GLOCK certainly surprised a lot of people with its announcement of the GLOCK 44. I don’t think it is a revolutionary gun but I think it will serve both GLOCK and their customers well. For some it will be a collector’s piece, for others a plinker, for some it will be a trainer and for many, it will be the first pistol they ever shoot.
I’m looking forward to getting my hands on a GLOCK 44 to test its reliability and find out if the trigger performs to expectations. Really, the only area where it leaves me wanting is the name… And it has me thinking about a GLOCK actually chambered in .44 special. Maybe they are saving that for the GLOCK 50?
What do you think about the GLOCK 44? They will be on store shelves January 20th, 2020. Will you own one?