Differences - Glock Gen 3 and Gen 4


GHF

New member
I am planning to purchase, for my son's 41st birthday, a Glock 19 in 9mm. He got his Florida FCWL on Christmas Eve.

What are the differences between the Gen 3 and Gen 4, beyond fitting his hand. He wants a Glock.

So far, I understand that the backstrap has changeability, and that the mag release can be switched - something that is not important for him, since he is right handed, on the Gen 4.

Are there different magazines for the Gen 4 only. I saw some indication on Cheaper Than Dirt about that. He will need an extra magazine as a range mag, keeping his initial two for carry.

Any comments or advice or suggestions welcome.
 

NYwill15

New member
The Gen 4 also has a better recoil spring. You're right about the backstrap being adjustable. I think having it gives it a better resale value if he ever decides to sell it. Maybe someday he'll want to change to a 40 cal or a 357 sig. You never know. As far as the magazines are concerned, if he keeps it set up for a right handed magazine release then any G19 magazine will work in the gun. It's only if the mag release is switched to the left that you would need gen 4 magazine's.
 

wolf_fire

New member
The guide rod and recoil spring are better in the Gen 4 as well, as NYwill mentioned.

Also, concerning the mags, there are two notches on the Gen 4 mags to accomodate a left hand or right hand mag release. The mags used for Gen 3's only had one notch. If you maintain a right-handed mag release any Gen 3 mag will work in a Gen 4 gun. All Gen 4 mags work in the Gen 3 guns. What won't work is a Gen 3 mag on a Gen 4 gun that has been outfitted for a left-handed mag release.

You really don't have to worry about this if you buy the Gen 4. Glock only makes Gen 4 mags anymore. If you buy a Gen 3, chances are you'll have the older (one notch) mags in there.

If you ever try to sell this down the road, this may become a stumbling block for you.

I personally like the back straps that the Gen 4 has. I have large hands and replaced my Gen 3 with a Gen 4 since it is more comfortable now.

Here's a pic of the different mags:
Link Removed
Here's a pic of the different guide rod/recoil springs... Gen 4 is on the left.
Link Removed
 

Geofrey

New member
Smart move buying a Glock. I was all set to purchase a Glock 19 until I compared the size to a Glock 26. The Glock 26 is much smaller and more concealable. I would reccomend the Glock 26 gen 4. In my opinion the 19 is to big for conceal carry.
 

GhostRecon21

New member
The grip texture is different between Gen 3 and Gen 4 as well. See the very first result on Google when searching "glock gen 4 vs gen 3":Gun Reviews ? Comparing the Glock Generation 4 to Generation 3

Also, new Gen 4 Glocks come with 3 magazines, while new Gen 3 Glocks come with 2 magazines. This makes up some of the price difference.

White and red label Glock's only ship with 2 magazines. It's the blue label models that ship with 3. This goes for both Gen 3 and Gen 4 models.

I don't know where this "Gen 4 ships with 3 magazines" rumor started but it needs to end. This is incorrect and causes confusion to new buyers! If they qualify for the blue label program they will receive 3 mags with their new Gen 3 or Gen 4 glock. Otherwise all new glocks ship with 2 mags.

Something that wasn't mentioned is that the Gen 4 will have less felt recoil due to that double spring system. Gen 4's produced in mid 2013 and later will come with 4 interchange back straps. 2 standard and 2 beavertail. Earlier Gen 4's will only come with the 2 standard back straps.
 

wolf_fire

New member
White and red label Glock's only ship with 2 magazines. It's the blue label models that ship with 3. This goes for both Gen 3 and Gen 4 models.

I don't know where this "Gen 4 ships with 3 magazines" rumor started but it needs to end. This is incorrect and causes confusion to new buyers! If they qualify for the blue label program they will receive 3 mags with their new Gen 3 or Gen 4 glock. Otherwise all new glocks ship with 2 mags.

Something that wasn't mentioned is that the Gen 4 will have less felt recoil due to that double spring system. Gen 4's produced in mid 2013 and later will come with 4 interchange back straps. 2 standard and 2 beavertail. Earlier Gen 4's will only come with the 2 standard back straps.

Is it not true that in addition to the LEO (blue label) Glocks having three mags, that red label Gen 4 Glocks also ship with three? It was my understanding with Gen 4's the only Glocks that don't have three mags now are the white labels.
 

Timothy Bryant

Avoidinyew
I'm facing this same dilemma as I'm also looking to purchase a Glock 19 and this would be my first Glock purchase. I was unaware of the differences in Gen 3 and Gen 4 until I started looking into purchasing one myself. So far what I've found to be different is the inclusion of interchangeable backstraps (for better grip options) and the inclusion of a dual recoil spring assembly as opposed to the Gen 3's single spring. Personally I plan to go with a Gen 4 for the (supposedly) lessened recoil with the new springs and because I've grown accustomed to the interchangeable backstraps since I already own a couple M&Ps.

I think the G19 is the perfect concealed carry pistol and is a much better purchase than the G26. For me, the grip is much too small on the G26 and would hinder both my draw speed and wouldn't allow for adequate controllability in a rapid fire engagement. Not to mention the fact you are still retaining a 15 round capacity rather than the 10 round of the G26.
 

bofh

Banned
White and red label Glock's only ship with 2 magazines. It's the blue label models that ship with 3. This goes for both Gen 3 and Gen 4 models.

I don't know where this "Gen 4 ships with 3 magazines" rumor started but it needs to end. This is incorrect and causes confusion to new buyers! If they qualify for the blue label program they will receive 3 mags with their new Gen 3 or Gen 4 glock. Otherwise all new glocks ship with 2 mags.

This may be true for Gen 3 Glocks, but definitely not for Gen 4. My red-label Glock 19 Gen 4 came with 3 fifteen-round magazines. I bought it at a TN Gander Mountain last year in June. I do not qualify for Glock's Blue Label program.

There are a small number of reports on the Internet about customers getting only 2 magazines with their Gen 4 Glock. They may have been ripped-off by their gun store. It is also possible that Glock messed up.
 

bofh

Banned
Quick description for those unfamiliar with Glock labels:

Red label = Magazines with more than 10 rounds
White label = Magazines with equal or less than 10 rounds
Blue label = Glock's LEO/first responder purchase program: Glock Blue Label Program | GLOCK USA

This literally describes the color of the label on the grip at the outside of the plastic box a Glock handgun comes with. Red label Glocks are not sold in states with a magazine capacity restriction of max. 10 rounds.
 

RossA

New member


He will need an extra magazine as a range mag, keeping his initial two for carry.



Maybe it's just me, but I make sure to shoot my carry mags at the range, as well as any spare "range mags." I want to know for sure that any mags I carry are still functioning as they should. In fact, I believe that any mag I own should be suitable for carry. If a mag isn't good enough to carry because it malfunctions or for whatever reason, then it's probably not good as a range mag, either.
 

Rocketgeezer

New member
I have both gen3 and gen4, I have small hands so the backstraps are a none issue, I use the smallest, I guess the diff recoil spring is a good idea, but Glocks have been around for going on 30 years, with the same style of recoil spring, with no out of the ordinary issues, and personaly I do not care for the rougher finish on the gen 4, in fact on my gen4 19 I sanded the rough texture and finger grooves off and put on a hough rubber slip grip, everybody will not like it but it my gun and I fixed it so I could shoot it
 

BigSlick

New member
My father in law bought a gen 4, 22 when they first came out. He already owned the gen 3 of the same model. After putting about three mags down range I didn't care for the factory stippling. My gen 3 grip feels better to me. As for the recoil spring, Wolfe makes a replacement guide rod and spring made of titanium that works real nice. I changed mine out years ago when the factory guide rod needed replacing.
 

Ringo

A WATCHMAN
The Glock 21 Gen 4 works for me. Added the back-strap ( large hands) and grip boot sleeve for a great feel.
 

BUmmedic

New member
Smart move buying a Glock. I was all set to purchase a Glock 19 until I compared the size to a Glock 26. The Glock 26 is much smaller and more concealable. I would reccomend the Glock 26 gen 4. In my opinion the 19 is to big for conceal carry.

Buy both :biggrin:

FWIW, the Glock 19 outsells other Glocks three to one, and plenty of people conceal it (and bigger guns).
 

RossA

New member
Amen. I regularly carry a full size 1911 and I'm a little guy. I'll never understand where everyone gets the idea that you can't conceal full size guns.
 

BUmmedic

New member
Amen. I regularly carry a full size 1911 and I'm a little guy. I'll never understand where everyone gets the idea that you can't conceal full size guns.

I did that for a while, but usually go for something a bit smaller. Today, XD-S 9mm with 26rd HST 124g(+P).
 

wolf_fire

New member
I conceal a G22 (full size .40) everyday without a problem.

However, that didn't stop me from buying the cute baby brother (G42) recently.
 

wolf_fire

New member
Maybe it's just me, but I make sure to shoot my carry mags at the range, as well as any spare "range mags." I want to know for sure that any mags I carry are still functioning as they should. In fact, I believe that any mag I own should be suitable for carry. If a mag isn't good enough to carry because it malfunctions or for whatever reason, then it's probably not good as a range mag, either.


No, it's not you. I number everyone of my mags with a sharpie. I never know which mags will be my "carry" mags. Whichever one that I put into the firearm is my carry mag. However, at the range, if I get misfires and they keep happening from one mag, then I change its spring. Problem is solved. I always keep a few extra springs around. They're cheap and easy to replace.

To not know how the mag you are carrying is going to function is, in my opinion, dangerous.

I completely agree with you RossA.
 

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