THE NEW GLOCK 48 FOR CONCEALED CARRY
Written by Steve Moses, in Section Gun Reviews
At the 2019 SHOT Show I got my hands on the new Glock 48 chambered in 9mm caliber. According to Larry Vickers, the 9mm is probably the best caliber choice for multiple reasons, including mild recoil, added capacity, more affordable practice ammunition, and terminal performance that is similar to that of larger calibers. I transitioned from the .45 ACP to the 9mm over 20 years ago and have never looked back. I became a Glock fan after running 1911s, Browning Hi-Powers, and CZ-75s. My Glocks of choice have been the Glock 19 and the Glock 43, and I cycled back and forth between the two based upon my plans for the day. If my clothing permits me to covertly carry my 19, that is what I carry, and if it doesn’t then I default to the 43. There is just one problem: I occasionally found myself wearing my 43 in and around places where I would like to have greater ammunition capacity and where distances at which an engagement might occur were noticeably greater than belly-gun range, but had concerns about how prominently my 19 would print under my tee or polo shirt.
And then it happened: Glock introduced the Glock 48, possibly the only pistol that a new concealed carrier might ever need and likely a pistol that will be embraced by long-time concealed carriers who desire a handgun that conceals nearly as well as the Glock 43, shoots nearly as well as the Glock 19, and has a magazine capacity of 10 rounds. The width of the grip and distance from the front strap of the frame to the trigger is such that it can be shot well by shooters with both small and large hands, and this makes it something of a Unicorn. The width of the slide is similar in size to the Glock 43, but length and height are close to that of the Glock 19.
The width of the frame is slightly larger in order to accommodate the 10-round magazine, and it may very well be that this one feature is what makes the 48 so easy to shoot for small shooters and large shooters alike. The 48’s slide bears an attractive silver nPVD finish that reportedly resists corrosion and abrasion. Glock added front serrations, which I find attractive and functional. A careful shopper should be able to find them for less than $500.00. I purchased one as soon as I returned from the SHOT Show and shot it the next day. The 48 sports a typical Glock 5.5-pound (more a less) trigger with no creep and a positive reset. On this same range day I shot both a 19 and a 43, and my subjective opinion is that the recoil is only slightly more noticeable than the 19 and significantly less snappy than that of the Glock 43.
A flat-profile pistol without a quality flat-profile holster simply defeats the purpose of effective concealed carry. Before I left the SHOT Show I put a call into my long-time friend, outstanding shooter, and master holster maker Spencer Keepers, and by the time I arrived in Texas I had two of his outstanding Keepers Concealment kydex appendix carry holsters sitting on my dinner table. If you don’t know who Spencer is, you should. Spencer is an excellent instructor, and several years ago when I decided to transition from traditional hip carry to appendix-carry I enrolled in his Appendix Carry Skills class. The holsters I referred to above are his “Keeper” and “Errand” models.
For those of us who don’t always know what we don’t know, a properly designed appendix-carry holster requires different features than a normal Inside-the-Waistband holster in order to make it concealable, comfortable, and fast from which to draw. After much trial-and-error, Spencer came up with a model that on a scale of 1-0 is an 11. I wear my Keepers Concealment holsters almost anytime that I am clothed. The “Errand model” I referred to above features a quick-detach plastic clip modified so that in can be worn without a belt, which is a big plus for females and a nice touch for guys hanging around the house in sweatpants, shorts, etc. since no belt is required. However, when I leave the house I make sure that I wear it with a belt in case I end up in a tussle simply because of the extra retention that the belt adds.
One last caveat: extremely short-waisted persons might find that the Glock 48 is slightly too long to comfortable appendix-carry. Should that happen, then Glock has something for them, too. The newly introduced Glock 43X features the same frame and 10-shot capacity of the 48, but the Glock 43X slide has the same dimensions of the proven Glock 43. I have not shot one yet so I am refraining from making further comments, but I would think that this pistol deserves consideration if the 48 is not suitable.
As always, pistols like these are still only tools, and it is up to the user to maximize their performance. Train when you can and practice even when you don’t want to. As Cliff Byerly of Hill Country Combatives said: “The day chooses you.”