All good things must come to and end, and it’s time to wrap up my ongoing review of the Glock 43. I kicked this series off last July with my first impressions of the G43, and then followed that up with a report on the gun’s reliability and accuracy with several different loads. Late last year I also offered a few thoughts on optimizing the G43 as a defensive tool. After that last article, I slowed down the testing process in order to work on some other stuff, but I took a couple of range trips in the past few weeks so I could officially pass the 3000 round mark. Today, I’m offering a few final thoughts on Glock’s single stack 9mm pistol in the video below.
If you’re looking for more in-depth comparisons between the Glock 43 and some of the other popular 9mm carry pistols, check out Jim’s take on the G43 versus the Sig P938. And in the near future, be on the lookout for Melody’s thoughts on the G43 as she compares it to the Smith & Wesson Shield she’s been carrying for the last couple of years.
Video: Glock 43 Final Update
Hey guys, I’m back with one final update on the Glock 43 — the single stack subcompact 9mm. I’m up to just over 3000 rounds through the gun and I’ve got a few observations I wanted to share before I wrap this one up and start reviewing some other stuff.
My last video update was back in the Fall and I talked about accuracy and reliability. The gun was running just fine out of the box, but then started having some problems with the aftermarket base pads I was using. Taran Tactical +1 and +2 base pads would frequently cause failures to feed with heavier hollow point bullets.
After we ran that vide, Scott from Taran Tactical got in touch with me and sent me a couple of the extra power magazine springs they had been working on. They seem to have completely taken care of the feeding issues I was having, and now Taran Tactical is shipping those new mag springs with all of the extended base pads they sell for the Glock 43. So thumbs up to Taran Tactical for being on top of that.
I still highly recommend you test your carry ammo if you use these or any other aftermarket base pads. Not every Glock 43 is going to be exactly the same, and small semi-autos in general are more susceptible to feeding problems than larger guns, so test fire a couple of boxes of your carry ammo anytime you change something.
With the spring issue taken care of, I’m pretty happy with these basepads. I still hate that Glock hasn’t made a factory extended magazine. But for an aftermarket part, these are pretty good. They’re made from solid aluminum, they’re pretty low-profile and don’t seem to be any bigger than they have to be. The +2 base pads seem to be pretty popular, but I actually prefer these smaller +1 basepads for concealed carry. That gives me seven rounds in the magazine plus one in the chamber but it does not stick out any further than the factory 6-round magazine with the pinky extension on it.
A while back, I replaced the factory sights with Trijicon HD night sights. The big orange ring on the front sight is a huge benefit, especially on a small gun like this. It makes getting back on target much easier during strings of rapid fire. One of the best things about any Glock is the aftermarket support, so even if you don’t like the Trijicons, there are plenty of other sight options out there if you need an upgrade.
The major complaint I’ve had with the Glock 43 is the trigger. It has smoothed out a little since it was brand new, but it’s still really stiff, even by Glock standards. I’ve even tried a couple of aftermarket connectors and they helped a little bit but not a lot. I still find myself jerking shots off target really easily when I’m trying to shoot quickly. I really have to make a conscious effort to slow down just a little bit if I want to make sure I’m going to hit the target.
You could say that’s just the nature of shooting these small guns, and that’s true to an extent — they’re always going to be more difficult to shoot. But with the other small nines I’ve carried and practiced with a lot, I was able to get to a point where I could run them almost as fast as a compact double stack pistol and still guarantee center mass hits out to seven yards. That was the case when I carried a Walther PPS and also with the M&P Shield. But I just have not been able to get used to the trigger on the Glock 43.
But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t recommend the Glock. The trigger thing is highly subjective and is dependant on hand size and technique and a bunch of other factors. So I certainly wouldn’t call it a deal breaker, it’s just something to be aware of.
Before working with the Glock 43, I would have absolutely considered the PPS and the Shield to be the best of the super-compact single stack 9mms. Now I would add the G43 to that list. All three of them are really good options for this size category. Even with the trigger issues and the lack of factory 7 and 8 round magazines, I think a lot of people are going to find the Glock 43 just fits their hands a little better and might be a little more concealable. Less experienced shooters are going to find it to be a handful, at least at first, and people with large hands might have a hard time getting used to it. But for those times when a double stack is just too big to carry, the Glock 43 should definitely be on the short list of guns to consider.