You probably know what a Glock is. If you don’t, it’s a gun. specifically, a very popular type of gun. The Glock 44 is the newest addition to the Glock line-up, packing some major heat. Literally and figuratively. This baby can shoot .44 magnum rounds, some of the most powerful rounds on the market.
Plus, it has all the features that have made Glocks so popular over the years: durability, accuracy, and ease of use. So if you’re looking for a serious piece of hardware to add to your collection, or if you want something that will make your adversaries think twice before attacking you, look no further than the Glock 44. Here’s our review of this impressive new gun.
Glock 44 Review: Pros and Cons
- Lightweight and compact size makes it ideal for concealed carry
- Features the Glock Marksman Barrel that offers great accuracy
- Excellent recoil management
- Large magazine capacity
- May be too small for some
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The Glock 44 is a superb entry into the already busy market of rimfire handguns. Built-in the silhouette of Glock’s enormously popular 19, the 44 is the perfect training companion for duty carry, competitive shooting, or personal defense. The Glock 44 is also great for backyard plinking and first-time gun owners.
Glock triggers are a known commodity, and those that don’t like the stock Glock trigger are likely to be unimpressed with the 44. Ditto for the sights. A bountiful aftermarket exists for Glocks, and tinkerers will likely enjoy customizing the 44 platforms.
For armorers and do-it-yourselfers, the 44 field strips like most other Glocks, with a few little twists that are very straightforward to master. Field stripping and cleaning operations are very, very simple.
Glock 44 Review: Short Introduction
Late in 2019 — long before the world knew anything about COVID-19 and what now feels like a lifetime ago, Glock released the 44. The Austrian tupperware company’s long-anticipated entry into the rimfire market had been speculated on for years. Also, the gun’s launch event was chock-full of fanfare and self-laudatory accolades.
Glock’s reputation as the standard-bearer for reliability and simplicity would hinge on the 44 doing its job, and they haven’t disappointed. Like every other Glock, the 44 delivers a robust and proven package.
At first glance, the 44 shouldn’t seem all that remarkable. The .22 long rifle cartridge is a different beast than the more ubiquitous centerfire cartridges that Glocks had thus been chambered in.
Introduced in 1857 by a fledgling company named Smith & Wesson, the diminutive .22 rimfire cartridge (then shorter and filled with black powder) was designed with a large rim. All the better for the revolvers that it was made for. Over time the .22 rimfire grew in length and power, but the fundamental challenges of making the rimmed revolver round work in a semi-automatic pistol have remained constant.
With the market already brimming with excellent choices, Glock still recognized that the lack of a rimfire offering in their lineup was a gaping hole. .22 pistols have long been the “gateway drug” into recreational shooting, and .22 caliber pistols made in the form of their centerfire counterparts have long been used as training tools.
In this vein, it’s fitting to begin with this assessment: if you’re already familiar with the Glock 19, then you’ll be astonished at how similar the Glock 44 feels to the 19. This was a masterful decision on Glock’s part since many operators consider the Glock 19 to be the optimally sized handgun.
The 44 feels like a 19. It shares most of the 19’s architecture: the trigger bar and trigger housing assembly will be immediately familiar to Glock armorers, as will the firing pin assembly. The only real deviation from Glock’s standard form factor is the non-tilting barrel and the composite (part plastic, part metal) slide in the 44.
And, of course, the magazines — which are shaped like the more familiar Glock 19 magazine. They also have a Ruger-style follower with thumb grips that facilitates loading.
Glock 44 Review: Features
The first thing most people notice about the Glock 44 is its lightness. While an empty Glock 19 weighs almost 24 ounces, the empty 44 is a featherweight at less than 15 ounces. The reason for this is straightforward: unlike the Glock 19’s solid steel slide, the 44 uses a composite (plastic and metal) slide — necessitated by the diminutive recoil of the .22 LR round.
I’ve always appreciated pistol magazines with thumb catches on the follower, and the Glock 44 magazine doesn’t disappoint here. Loading it with 10 cartridges is a quick operation that doesn’t require any speedloader. Rounds drop in easily, and my thumbs weren’t chafing after loading a half-dozen magazines.
Glock 44 Finishing
The Glock 44 offers long-lasting protection with its diamond-hard carbon finish. The coating protects against corrosion and provides excellent scratch resistance. The gun’s coating is useful since it ensures it will fire regardless of the weather or other external factors. The polymer slide also allows the weapon to function with considerably less force.
Glock 44 Magazine Slide
The magazines slide into the magwell smoothly and drop out without needing any coercion. Being limited to ten rounds in the factory magazine will irritate some, but I have not found this to be a practical limitation in my range use of the 44.
Glock 44 Recoil Spring
The light recoil spring and the front and rear serrations on the slide make cycling the action easy, which is a good thing: .22 LR ammunition can be notoriously finicky, and I (correctly) anticipated that I’d be doing a few involuntary rack-tap-bang drills.
Glock 44 Sights
The sights on the 44 are adjustable and classically Glock. The white U-shaped rear sight and a round white dot front sight are debated in Glock circles with religious fervor. Some operators love them, and others replace the sights before the gun ever sees the light of day.
I grew to love the Glock sights years ago, and I would probably only replace them for a set of suppressor height sights. The sights appear to use the standard Glock dovetails, which opens up a world of aftermarket sight options.
Glock 44 Grips
The slide of the Glock 44 has extra serrations on the front for enhanced grip. The serrations on a pistol’s grip make it easier for the shooter to gain a firm hold when charging the weapon. If you need to add accessories, you’ll discover a little rail just before of the trigger. The handgun also has four interchangeable grip adapters, so you may choose one that works with your hand size.
The rest of the controls — the trigger, the magazine release, the slide stop, and the takedown lever — feel identical to every other Glock. I clocked my 44’s trigger at 6.0 pounds, just over the factory’s claimed weight of 5.85 pounds (26 Newtons).
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Glock 44 Review: Shooting Performance
Since the Glock 44 follows the same form factor as the Glock 19, loading it and making it ready for live fire felt the same on the two guns. The lighter recoil spring meant manually cycling the action took less effort, but that’s the only noticeable difference.
The takeup on the Glock 44’s trigger is predictable and linear, and the break comes cleanly. Every firearm has some recoil, and the 40-grain CCI standard velocity rounds let me know that they were there. However, my recovery times were remarkably quick with the Glock 44. The reset on the trigger came with a perceptible and audible click. With a bit of practice, I could fire smooth and accurate 10-round strings with virtually no muzzle rise.
As a training pistol, this is where the Glock 44 is superb: it replaces the feel and controls of the Glock 19, but it lets the operator overcome the urge to jerk the trigger and pull the muzzle down in anticipation of violent recoil.
My Targets After Shooting the Glock 44
At 25 yards, I managed a respectable 3″ by 4″ group, and if I leave out the three shots that I clearly jerked the trigger on, my group tightens up to a uniform 3″.
The occasional dud round is epidemic to .22 LR ammunition. The Glock 44 wasn’t immune. With just over 2,500 rounds through my Glock 44, I’ve probably had about twenty FTFs, FTEs, and rounds that didn’t fire despite the strong primer strikes.
All of these present opportunities to practice “rack-tap-bang” drills, and this is where I appreciated the Glock 44’s polymer slide. The polymer slide was easily grasped and pulled back smoothly, lacking the sharp machine-cut serrations of its heavier steel siblings.
Glock 44 Review: Takedown/ Field Strip
Glocks have long been hailed for their simplicity, and the 44 is no exception. The field stripping sequence for the 44 is like every other Glock: remove the magazine, clear the chamber, depress the trigger, and pull the slide back ever-so-slightly while pulling down on the slide lock.
The slide should move forward off of the frame, whence the recoil spring and barrel can be removed. For Glock armorers and YouTube devotees, detail stripping the 44 can be done in under 2 minutes and requires the same takedown tool used for every other Glock.
Keeping the Glock 44 clean is especially important because .22 LR ammunition is typically well lubricated, and this grease makes its way onto everything in its vicinity. Shooting three hundred rounds between cleanings leaves an impressive collection of grease and dirt deposits. Still, my 44 has gone for over 500 rounds without a cleaning, which has not impaired its smooth operation or accuracy.
The single most common upgrade to the Glock 44 is the factory threaded barrel upgrade kit. A drop-in replacement, it adds about three quarters of an inch of barrel length and lets the operator attach a suppressor.
Suppressed .22 caliber pistols have long been a recreational shooter’s nirvana, and the Glock 44 doesn’t disappoint here. With a suppressor, the Glock 44 feels more like an air pistol. The threaded barrel also comes with a thread protector and an adapter to go from the barrel’s curious M9x0.75 thread to the industry standard 1/2″-18 UNEF suppressor thread.
Glock 44 Review: Joining the Glock Family
The Glock 44’s real appeal goes beyond the gun itself: it’s a part of the Glock family, which has ubiquity among law enforcement circles and a fiercely devoted following of enthusiasts and competitive shooters.
Being a member of this family has its advantages: holsters and mag pouches, for instance, can be interchanged between the Glock 44 and the Glock 19. Since the 19 shares critical external dimensions with many other Glock handguns, it’s possible to use one holster for upwards of ten different Glock handguns.
Joining the Glock family also opens the door to the Glock Sports Shooting Foundation, whose shooting league has introduced legions of novice shooters to competitive marksmanship. Membership in the GSSF allows the operator to attend Glock’s armorers class.
The one-day class teaches the operator to detail strip the Glock frame and slide and to diagnose and troubleshoot most problems. Armorer’s classes are available from other firearms manufacturers but are often restricted to military and law enforcement clientele. Glock’s outreach to recreational shooters is impressive, making the Glock 44 even more compelling for novice shooters.
Lastly, Glock has a rabid aftermarket. So extensive is the aftermarket that a Glock clone can now be made entirely from aftermarket parts. I’m generally not a fan of running non-factory parts in my guns, but for many tinkerers and enthusiasts, Glock’s vibrant aftermarket will make the 44 all the more appealing.
Glock 44 Review: Competition
As I mentioned in the introduction, the Glock 44 joins a crowded field of competent and proven .22 pistols. The superb Taurus TX22 (perhaps the Glock 44’s closest competitor) was released earlier in 2019 and has received many well-deserved accolades for its crisp trigger and 16-round factory magazine. This is the most common point of criticism for the Glock 44: its factory magazines top out at 10 rounds.
The field of .22 caliber pistols is generally bifurcated into two categories: pistols like the Glock 44 that mimic their centerfire siblings, and dedicated target pistols that are more purpose-built for competition.
In the former category, the Glock 44 competes with the Smith & Wesson M&P 22, the Beretta M9 22LR, the Walther P22, and various .22 caliber 1911’s that have been offered by companies like Sig Sauer and Browning. For most people, the choice between a Glock 44 and any of these other guns will come down to the rest of the guns in the operator’s arsenal.
Someone that already owns and enjoys a Smith & Wesson M&P in 9mm would be more likely to choose the M&P 22, while someone that owns and enjoys a Glock 19 would logically choose the Glock 44 for a rimfire trainer.
The other category of .22 pistols are the purpose-built target pistol. These include the Beretta U22 Neos, the Browning Buck Mark, the Smith & Wesson Model 41, the Ruger Mark IV, and many others.
These target pistols generally have longer barrels and are more suitable for precision target shooting. These are all superb pistols that have a place in the recreational marksman’s arsenal, but they won’t have the versatility of a gun like the Glock 44.
Wrap Up: Is the Glock 44 a Good Gun?
The Glock 44 is a solid performer in a crowded field of superb .22 pistols. Consistent with Glock’s reputation for reliability and simplicity, the Glock 44 does its work with Teutonic efficiency. Also, it slots nicely into the Glock family. It mimicks the Glock 19’s proportions, making it an ideal trainer for operators that carry a Glock 19 on duty.
Glock‘s excellent customer service and ubiquity in the firearms marketplace mean that parts and support for the 44 will be available for a long time.
The Glock’s affordable retail price makes it an attractive option for anyone’s arsenal. Sworn law enforcement, EMS, and active duty military can purchase Glock handguns at a discounted blue label price.