Just as I reached the back of the gun shop that I haunt, one of the owners, Mark, reached into the display case, and asked me: “Have you seen the new Glock forty-five?” Before I could even answer, it was in my hands, and I liked it – a lot. Wow! A single-stack Glock in .45 ACP, and it feels sooo good…” Boy, what I wrong, I should have known better – you can’t tell what a Glock is by the model numbers they assigned to their handguns. I admit that I don’t keep up with all the latest firearms like I used to – just not enough hours in the day for that. So, I had mistakenly believed that this Glock forty-five, was chambered in .45 ACP. Every now and then, the guys at the gun shop pull a “gotcha” moment on me, because they learn about a new handgun before I do.
Needless to say, the new Glock “forty-five”, isn’t chambered in the .45 ACP. Instead, it is chambered in the ubiquitous 9mm Parabellum, but there’s a whole lot more to the story. The gun felt good in my hand, very familiar, to say the least. Had I taken a moment to put on my reading glasses, I would have seen on the slide, that it was marked 9mm, and not .45 ACP. Another thing that caught my eye immediately was that the barrel extended beyond the slide and it is threaded to accept a suppressor. That had me excited. I’ve been thinking hard about getting a sound suppressor for quite some time, even though the Hearing Protection Act has stalled in congress. That proposed law would have treated suppressors much like firearms and removed the Federal registration and the $200 transfer tax.
Many people believe that a sound suppressor is a “silencer” as seen in the movies. Well, that’s not the truth. They don’t “silence” the sound of a bullet leaving the barrel of a gun, they only reduce the sound signature – quite a bit – but they are not true “silencers” – that’s false. Still, they have their place, in the overall scheme of things. One is, the reduced sound helps protect your hearing – a lot. The first suppressed firearm that I fired was an HK MP5, that the late Col. Rex Applegate had in his collection – it was a lot of fun to shoot on his rural property – right out the back door of his Annex building, where he kept his gun and knife collections. To be sure, Applegate had plenty of 9mm submachine ammo – he had no less than 50,000-rounds on-hand for several of his submachine guns chambered in 9mm. And, I couldn’t even count the amount of .44 Mag ammo he had – it took up a small room itself. Impressive! I worked for Applegate from 1990 until 1993, when we moved from the area, and he had no less than 850 firearms in his collection. It was almost a full-time job maintaining his guns and knives every month.
Back to the Glock Model 45: This model has a frame that is the length of the Glock 17, and it’s a full-sized pistol. However, the slide is the length of that found on the compact Glock 19 – however, the barrel is a little bit longer, because of the threading on the end, to accept a screw-on sound suppressor. The slide also has suppressor height sights on it – meaning they are taller than the standard sights, in order to see over the suppressor – very nice touch. However, one drawback is that, with the higher front sight, the gun wouldn’t fit in any of my Blackhawk Products molded Kydex holsters – too tight of a fit. Though it will fit in some leather holsters. I removed the sights and installed a set of standard Glock sights – a perfect fit. But if I ever obtain an over-the-counter sound suppressor, then I’ll re-install the taller sights on the Model 45.
As we look at the slide closely, the front of the slide is nicely, very nicely angled/beveled for easier re-holstering – another outstanding touch. Of course, nice grasping grooves on the rear/sides of the slide for easy chambering of a round, or extraction. Moving down to the frame, we have an ambidextrous slide release/stop – nice touch, but it won’t allow holstering in the skimpy factory-made Glock plastic holsters, without removing a little bit of material on the right side of the holster to accommodate the right-side slide release/stop – an easy enough project. There are no finger grooves on the front of the frame – and I like that. I used to think that the finger grooves were a good idea, but not any longer. I realized that I want my fingers to go where they want to go, when I grip a handgun – not where the grooves say my fingers should be – a small thing, but its important to me.
There are nice tiny “pyramid” protrusions on the grip – all the way around, for a very secure on the gun when you are holding it – not matter what the weather might be. Plus, you get two additional backstraps if you have big hands, or just want a different feel when holding the gun – they are easy to install – just remove a pin, put on the new backstrap, and re-install the pin. I personally like the way the gun felt without either backstrap in-place – felt perfect without either of the extra backstraps installed. Of course, the grip is black polymer, and the slide is all-steel, with the famous black coating that Glock is known for – extremely durable under any weather conditions.
The Glock 45 takes the standard Glock 17-round magazines–with or without +2 extensions–as well as the Glock 3-round or 33-round extended magazines. It also works well with the fairly new ETS, 40-round magazines – outstanding. We are talking a lot of fire-power in a handgun-sized package. Aas a side note: I currently have my Glock 45 fitted inside the CAA Micro Conversion Kit set-up, so it looks more like a submachine gun, than a pistol, and it is accurate out to 150-yards on a man-sized target, yet is very compact and super light-weight as well. With a red dot sight on the top-mounted Picatinny rail, and back-up “iron” sights, plus a light and green laser, it is the ultimate home defense package if you ask me. But that’s another article.
My Shooting Tests
No matter how good a gun might look and feel, the proof is in firing it, and I’ve yet to have a brand-new, in-the-box Glock fail to function of exhibit great accuracy and reliable function. A Glock is one of the few guns, I would take out of the box, load it up and put it on my side for duty or self-defense use, without test-firing it first. However, I always test-fire every gun I own, before trusting it, just the same.
From Black Hills Ammunition I had most of their 9mm line-up, but I was missing a few from their line-up because of a lot of 9mm handgun testing for articles. But in any event, I had their 115-gr JHP +P, 124-gr JHP +P, 115-gr FMJ, 124-gr JHP, 115-gr Barnes Tac-XP +P and their 100-gr HoneyBadger all-copper +P load that is not a hollow point, but just as effective – if not more so. So, I had a great selection to run through my new Glock 45 – that is, once again, chambered in 9mm – not in .45 ACP.
In all my testing along with the help from my lovely wife, as a volunteer shooter – she loves to burn through ammo like it is water…we fired more than 500-rounds though the Glock 45 in a couple of hours. It was especially fun for my wife. She loved going through those ETS 40-round magazines, making rocks jump downrange and destroying them in short order.
Accuracy testing was conducted at 25 yards, with me shooting over a cushioned rifle rest atop a huge boulder. Just using the Model 45, without it in the CAA Micro Conversation Kit, I was consistently getting groups hovering right around 3.00 to 3.50 inches without much trouble at all – and I wasn’t concentrating as much as I should have. Once I hunkered down, I was getting groups hanging in there right at 3.00 inches with all of the loads, except one – that was the Black Hills 124-gr JHP – their standard velocity round, not the +P load. I’ve found this to be an excellent round for use in most 9mm chambered handguns, and it would be a great choice for self-defense as well.
A Quick Thread Protector Fix
As I mentioned the threaded barrel comes with a screw-on thread protector. However, I found that it will shoot itself loose in short order. So I installed a rubber “O” ring on the barrel and they screwed on the thread protector – and tightened it down. It never came loose after that. Strange that Glock didn’t include a rubber “O” ring or similar device on the Model 45. Nor is there any mention in their owner’s manual to address this problem.
If you’re thinking about doing the red tape routine, and jumping through all the paperwork hoops and paying the $200 Federal transfer tax to get a sound suppressor for a handgun, I can highly recommend the Glock 45. It was 100% reliable in my testing. But then again, I wouldn’t expect any problems – it’s a Glock! The Model 45is selling for around $600 – if you can find one, they are a little bit hard to come by!