September 8, 2013

Glock Model 26 9mm Parabellum, $599

The 9mm pistol was the breakthrough sidearm that ushered in today's massive popularity of the self-loading pistols. One of the ways in which the semi-auto has evolved is its variation in size, making it possible to conceal a smaller version of a full-size carry gun. One pistol with these assets is Glock's $599 Model 26.

The popularity of the Glock pistol is undeniable. It is the preeminent polymer design and the G26 can be found in lots of tight spaces, purses, fanny packs, or inside the boot of a Texas state trooper. The Glock pistol is simple, relatively inexpensive and a natural complement to carrying a full-size model on the hip. But it is stubby and wide, with a short grip that can be a turnoff.

Companies such as Pearce Grip offer a $10 replacement basepad aftermarket to add a third finger groove that makes room for the pinky finger of all but the largest of hands, (pearcegrip.com). We tried using a magazine with such enhancement at the bench, but we did not always find it to be an advantage.

Firing our 115-grain ammunition from the bench left us with five-shot groups measuring approximately 2.5 inches across. We felt that the reason for this mediocre performance was that there just wasn’t much gun to support with the sandbags. The dustcover was very short.

Our best accuracy was achieved by loading the G26 with Federal 124-grain Hydra-Shok ammunition. A 2.4-inch group ruined a succession of sub 2-inch groups to expand the average to about 2.0 inches across.

The Glock trigger actually offers a fair amount of takeup without a strong sensation of stacking or gathering resistance. At the bench we applied even pressure with both hands, read what little light could find its way around the wide front sight and padded the trigger until we felt we had a go.

Elsewhere, we noticed a couple of other nits. Racking the slide to load a round or pulling it back slightly to make sure there was one in the chamber should always be performed by pinching the rear of the slide. Grasping the slide of a short gun such as the G26 forward of the ejection port puts the shooter’s hand dangerously close to the muzzle. In terms of reloading, the wide mouth of the magazine well was easy to fill, but when pressing the magazine release care must be taken not to block the falling magazine.

In our action test we had no trouble landing hits to the A zone center mass in a one-two stroke of the trigger. Even without the support of the basepad magazine extension, the G26 rocked back on target after each shot. Seventeen of our twenty shots to the body were on target. But elevating to the B zone we landed only five of ten hits.

The reason for this in our opinion was simple. We were rushing our shots. Aiming directly forward on to the body was easier than transitioning to a smaller target. Without the support of a full grip we needed to take more time between shots and allow the sights to settle.

To many eyes, Glock pistols have changed little since their introduction. But several design changes have taken place each without any fanfare that we can recall. For example, the grip angle has become more user-friendly, including finger grooves and a palm swell to the rear with added texture to enhance grip. Carefully inspecting our G26, we couldn’t help but notice that the barrel crown was recessed and polished. The cut appeared to be even and flawless, with the recess serving to protect the rifling.


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Reader Comments

I like Glocks. They are very simple and always work. Some people I know are concerned about the lack of a safety and a relatively light trigger. Any definitive data on whether this is a real problem?

Comment by: MICHAEL T | April 30, 2009

In response to Michael T, keep in mind that revolvers have no safeties, either, and no says a modern revolver is a safety hazard. As for the light trigger, but it's no lighter than a single action 1911. Glocks are only dangerous for those who don't know what they're doing and probably shouldn't own a gun anyway. Lock 'n Load!

Comment by: ANTHONY S | April 30, 2009

I prefer Glocks. I used both the Glock 19 and later in an undercover position, the Glock 26. They are simple to use, maintain, and are accurate. I fire a great number of rounds through both and had only one jamb and that was during a training exercise and it was my fault and not the weapon. I agree with the comment made by Anthony S. about safety issues with the Glock. Training is everything!

Comment by: Eugene C | April 30, 2009

This Glock is a perfect replacement for a J-Frame S&W revolver like a 5 shot Chief's Special. Small grip, no safety, short barrel, similar cartridge, goes off every time you pull the trigger. It is designed for home defense and concealed carry and it is an excellent choice for either application.

Comment by: keyaz | April 30, 2009

The Glock Pistols have been a favorite of mine for a while now. I use a Glock 19 for work. I have never had a malfunction with it and it is more accurate than I am. I have shot the 26 and found it has the same qualities save for the shortened grip. One interesting thing I have noticed is that people who carry a full size Glock (17,22) for work and a baby (26,27) off work are more accurate than with their baby Glocks than their full size counterparts. Strange to see and hear, but, I have witnessed it and have also heard other anecdotes about it. In summary, I think Glocks are great handguns and I think the only semi-auto that may be coming close is the S&W M&P.

Glock Model 26 9mm

Courtesy Gun Tests

Our G26 performed without a moment's worry and carried 10+1 rounds. The Glock 26 was never meant to be a target pistol or a primary weapon. But as a hideout gun or backup pistol, the Glock 26 is a solid choice.

Comment by: TJ L | April 30, 2009

i had a glock 26 as a concealed carry but sold it for a SW 637 w/ a bobbed hammer and barami hip grip. the glock has too short a grip for my hand and getting an extended mag or other attachment defeats the "size" purpose in my opinion. i never had a mis-fire w/ the glock ... just found something better suited for my purpose. the barami hip grip is a very effective way to carry my 637 and i also carry a bianchi speed strip. isn't having choices great?!

Comment by: BILL K | May 1, 2009

Yup, choices are great, even though I love my Glocks, I still have a couple of snub nose revolvers that I will carry around in certain situations.

Comment by: TJ L | May 2, 2009

Glocks actually have internal(including the trigger) safeties and the gun will not go off unless the trigger is pulled. I have a 22 and a 27. I have found that I can shoot as well or better with the 27 load with the same ammo. Glock makes a reliable handgun at a reasonable price that will never let you down. For personal protection or combat I wouldn't choose any other pistol. For target shooting or looks there are other choices (Kimber 1911's, ect.) but they are more expensive and not as user friendly (w/o practice).

Comment by: dwave | May 2, 2009

Though I've owned as many as 8 Glocks at a time, I'm down to 4 now, including a G-26. You can (for now) buy 12-round mags fore the G26. Give you a little more grip and 13 rounds of protection in a smaller package.

Comment by: Marine56 | May 4, 2009

I believe the Glock Model 26 is an excellent back-up or off-duty concealed carry pistol. For comparison purposes, in contrast to a Sig Sauer P232, .380 ACP pistol, the Glock Model 26 in 9 mm, offers more rounds, significantly better ballistics, just slightly more weight (2.4 ounces) and the factored size (Length X Height X Width) or concealability factor, is 10% less than the Sig. Even when compared to a light-weight revolver such as a S&W Chief’s Special, the Glock Model 26 rates very favorably and it has twice the rounds capacity as a five shot revolver.

Comment by: jdpress | May 4, 2009

I also own a G26 and can attest to the worthiness and reliability of it.It has never malfunctioned in any way with any type of ammunition. Outstanding backup Best part is,I have a small hand.

Comment by SG Delaney I make no secret of my love of Glocks. I own a 17L,19,23,30sf,and a 32. I have shot thousands of rounds through all and never had a failure even when shooting Russian ammo. I carry one daily and have complete confidence in all of them. I'm lucky I live near the home office in Smyrna,GA and I take all mine in for a good going over yearly, but I'm confident I could shoot any without maintenance and still get unfailing operation.

Comment by: TBILL | May 5, 2009

I own a glock 26 as a carry weapon in a fanny pack. It is well compact. I do not put a round in the chamber because of safety issues with the trigger. In firing it does have a definite "kick" to it and there are times I wish the grip would be longer. Overall I am happy with it.

Comment by: DOUG S | May 8, 2009

Obviously, using a G26 with a G19 or G17 magazine solves some of the "short grip" challenge (or one can use the 33-rd mag if in the midst of a Zombie Apocalypse).

Comment by: David C | December 9, 2010

My duty sidearm is a G22 with a G27 in a rear pocket. It is a "system".

My concealed carry is a G27 with an 11 round magazine that also gives me a pinky rest. My reload is a G22, 15 round magazine.

The Glock is totally safe if the trigger is protected.

I personally prefer the 9mm over the .40 cal for civilian carry. I had to use the .40 because of the law enforcement duties.

Comment by: RICHARD H | December 9, 2010

Glock is the 1911 of the 21st century.

Comment by: jocor | December 9, 2010

This Glock is a perfect replacement for a J-Frame S&W revolver like a 5 shot Chief's Special. Small grip, no safety, short barrel, similar cartridge, goes off every time you pull the trigger. It is designed for home defense and concealed carry and it is an excellent choice for either application

Except that Glock will only fire through your pocket 1 time My S&W 640 .357 will do that 5 times.

Comment by: pitdogg | December 9, 2010

I have the Glock 34 in 9mm and had the Glock 27 in 40 caliber and the Glock 36 in 45ACP, all great handguns. I wish Glock made single stack handguns in each of the same handguns including the model 19 to compete with the single stack Kahr firearms with Glock reliability.

Comment by: PH/CIB | December 9, 2010

I have 3 Glocks. A 19,23 and a 26. I use a two hand hold. With the 26 my left hand would always slip of when firing. Changes in my griping were of no help. The Pearce grip was the perfect solution.

Comment by: GERALD LARSEN | December 9, 2010

Currently carry 19 off-duty and a 21 for duty. I've owned both the 26 & 27 for concealed carry and they are excellent choices for that role. I now carry the 19 simply for the longer grip and sight radius; it seems to conceal just as well.

Comment by: exdetsgt | December 9, 2010

Regarding what TJL said, I think the only semi-auto that may be coming close is the S&W M&P; I own both; and there is no doubt in my mind that M&P is at least equal. Regarding the statement by GT -- "The Glock trigger actually offers a fair amount of takeup without a strong sensation of stacking or gathering resistance." That's what turned me off about the Sig 239 -- there was too much mushy play -- However that was not at all a problem with my Glock 32.

Glock Model 26 9mm Parabellum

Courtesy, Gun Tests

The standard Glock fixed sight on our G26 was drift adjustable and accented by a bright white outline. On bigger guns with a longer sight radius, focusing on the front sight might push your vision so far ahead of the rear sight that a white outline can go unnoticed, especially under stress. But on the little G26 we never lost sight of the outline during our fast-action drills.

Comment by: tovlogos | December 9, 2010

I have carried a G17 for years, but my primary CW turned into the Walther PPS, mainly due to the thin frame. The Glock in its factory plastic holster is very comfortable but the PPS is super thin and prints far less. The action is very Glock-like while being single stack thin with 7 shots available. I love them both.

Comment by: Robert V | December 10, 2010

Had a G26 for backup/hideout carry, was happy that the mags for my off-duty G19 also fit, both the factory and aftermarket versions. Great b/u piece but traded it for something I thought I wanted more...wrong!!!!! My only bitch was the frame length. Yes, the grip WAS better with the longer mags in place but who carries a concealment piece with a higher-cap mag in it unless you just reloaded, and if you're at that point... you better hope SRT is on the way!!! Works great in an ankle holster or in your front pocket with a pocket holster or just in a coat. NEVER had any problems with mine. Problem now is finding another!

Comment by: Tower gunner | December 11, 2010

I am not a 9mm fan nor a Glock fan. My finger rubs on the bottom of the trigger guard and I find them uncomfortable in that respect. BUT... an older fellah in my last CCW class had one. He consistently shot the smallest groups from all ranges. Outstanding little gun if you like the 9mm

Comment by: Markbo | December 19, 2010

Markbo: 9mm has its place, esp with regards to size of wpn and/or weight. Also, some agencies may have some bizarre off-duty weapon re-quirements and you may be stuck. We haven't been yet... Good ammo helps too. Some is almost as good as .357 SIG or .45ACP rds. One thing which doesn't bother me, it's just un-necessary, is the 'hook' on the triggerguard. Never seen a need since I don't use it to shoot but some may. LOL!

Comment by: Tower gunner | December 21, 2010

Glocks are "relatively inexpensive"? Really? Not where I live. Simple, yes. I hate the way the grip is on this pistol. Too short and fat. As a BUG I much prefer the PF9. Better grip purchase and you can buy two for the price of the G26. And they're just as durable and simple.

Comment by: 469shooter | January 13, 2011

If I lost my guns in a fire and I had a ton of money, I would probably NOT get another Glock. I, also, am not a fan of the grip as well as a few other design items.

My department's choice of the Glock 22 was what I had to work with as what everyone else was carrying. Having weapon commonality was a consideration instead of going with what I personally preferred. Now that a have my Glocks and concealed carry accessories I am not wanting to make a change from something that has worked and become familiar.

Comment by: RICHARD H | January 13, 2011

I've had a S&W j frame over 45 years, I won't say carried becaus I live in a communist state that doesn't want their subjects armed. I bought a model 26 and liked it but let a young lady talk me out of it. I've got to get another one.

Comment by: cat killer | January 14, 2011

I own a couple of Glocks 17,34,26 and a 17L. I love because their are Eloquent with their simple design, they we eat anything and everything that I can feed in to it. I find the 26 to be the most amazing, due to its small size. Recently, I brought the 17L and the 26 to the range, I was surprised how the 26 with a 4.49 barrel was just as accurate as the 17L with a 6.02 inch barrel. I find the grip to be a little short, so I use a 17 rd mag and the extension is real nice for a little more grip, plus it holds extra rounds.

Comment by: NRARI | January 22, 2011

I extended the grip on my 26, which caused absolutely NO problem unholstering. It did however add significantly to safety as I had another finger on the grip. I also bought a little known trigger lock that is infallible and can be removed by ONE finger and make the gun usable. It costs less than $7.00 and is unbreakable. It is made by SAF-T-BLOK it fits behind the trigger providing a positive trigger block. The Grip extender was about $9.00 and made by Pearce Grip. These two pieces of safety equipment made the 26 almost completely trustworthy. I only say almost because it still is a Glock after all.

Comment by: BIMMER | January 27, 2011

I extended the grip on my 26, which caused absolutely NO problem unholstering. It did however add significantly to safety as I had another finger on the grip. I also bought a little known trigger lock that is infallible and can be removed by ONE finger and make the gun usable. It costs less than $7.00 and is unbreakable. It is made by SAF-T-BLOK it fits behind the trigger providing a positive trigger block. The Grip extender was about $9.00 and made by Pearce Grip. These two pieces of safety equipment made the 26 almost completely trustworthy. I only say almost because it still is a Glock after all.

Comment by: BIMMER | January 27, 2011

Adding a Glock +2 magazine extension solves the short grip problem and gives you 12+1 firepower. The gun is too heavy and bulky for pocket carry in a sport coat, but that is what .380 autos are for.

Comment by: Nobody | April 10, 2011

My G-26 has all but been retired as a carry gun except on rare occasion. I use extended mags. for more firepower but that is made possible buy having had a crossbreed deep tuck made for it. My favorite carry now is an FNH FiveseveN. a larger but markedly less heavy firearm. Uses a 5.7x28mm rnd and carries 36 of them. I also had a crossbreed made for that and it leaves absolutely no imprint and weighs considerably less.Unbelievably accurate also. Unlike any Glock there is a safety.No more Glocks for me.


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