If you like the .45 ACP cartridge, and you happen to like Glock pistols, then there is a long list of Glock pistols in that particular caliber: the G21, G21 GEN4, G21SF, G30, G30 GEN4, G30S, and the G36 with which to play.
The newest addition to the Glock .45ACP lineup is the G41, which is touted as a “practical/tactical” pistol, according to the Glock website. The G30S and G41 GEN 4 are the “slim” versions. I do like the G30S over my G30SF, due to the slimmer slide and I though that I would like the G41 GEN 4 version as well. Although I have not shot the G30S, I had the opportunity to handle and shoot the G41 GEN4 recently, a range pistol no less and I thought that I would pass my impression of this pistol on to you.
My interest in the G41 stemmed from my ownership of a GEN 3 Glock 21, which is a companion to the GEN 3 Glock 30SF and the GEN 3 Glock 36.
The Glock G41 is supposed to have a slimmer slide and longer sight radius than the G21 and I was interested to see if this really made a difference compared to the G21.
As a side note, I am usually writing reviews for new firearms. I started thinking that writing a review on a firearm that has been well used might be more useful to those who would consider purchasing a new firearm, or would be looking at a used firearm, and would like to know just what the firearm would be like down the road.
Hopefully, throughout 2018, I will be concentrating on gun reviews of “range guns;” the firearms that have been put through hell and high water by experienced and inexperienced shooters. Range guns are, for the most part, neglected and all manner of ammunition is being put through them. I know for a fact that some “hand loading types” use range firearms as test beds for their latest creation. In some case, the loaded cartridges may not even be adequate to cycle the slide properly. In other case, the cartridge may test the boundaries of what we would consider good sense. Recoil springs weaken and parts get battered more so that with our personal firearms upon which we place an enormous value. It is usually better to batter somebody else’s firearm that our own. Best case is that the firearm survives with no issues. Worst case is that the firearm needs to be repaired or replaced after some yahoo loads up a round that was never intended to be put through the barrel of the firearm. This happened recently with a Ruger Redhawk range revolver that was chambered in .44 Magnum that was thrown out of time by hot loads; you really have to push a Ruger for one to fail, but apparently it can be done.
Lest I digress further, let’s get to the matter at hand – reviewing the Glock GEN 4 G41.
First up, let me say that the frame of the G41 is the same as that found on the G21. The major difference is the width of the slide and the length of the sight radius. The slide of the G41 is thinner both in outer width and inner thickness than the G21. As shown below, the sight radius is longer than the G21. The G41 sight radius is 192mm as compared to the 172mm sight radius of the G21. The barrel length of the G41 is 135mm as compared to the 117mm barrel length of the G21.
It should be noted that the G41 is touted as a pistol for competition; whereas, the G21 claim to fame is in the “general” category. Both are in the “Service” pistol category and many law enforcement agencies carry the G21 as such.
The loaded weight of the G41 is approximately 2.3 ounces lighter than the G21. When carrying a fully loaded duty belt any drop in weight is a good thing. However, there is not enough difference here to, well, make a difference. Both the G41 and the G21 carry the same 13 rounds of ammunition.
Other than the slide width and length, the barrel length, and the increased sight radius there are no other features to speak of. The grip incorporates the finger-grooves, the slide-lock is the same, and take-down/assembly is the same on both pistols. Both the G41 and the G21 share the same polymer sights. So, what you are getting, essentially, is a G21 with a better profile. I actually like the changes in the G41.
One of the things that I do like about the G41 is the lack of slide cutout to reduce mass, as is seen with quite a few competition pistols. I have a Springfield 5.25 with a cutout slide and it is not a firearm that I would carry although it is an excellent shooter. Of course, one could say that it is not any different from carrying a Beretta 92 (M9) with its open slide design. However, the Beretta slide is fitted better to the barrel; whereas, the Springfield 5.25 slide has quite a bit of gap between it and the barrel. In other words, the design of the Springfield 5.25 allows more debris to collect between the slide and barrel as compared to the Beretta.
The Glock 41, having a longer dust cover than the G21, incorporates a rather substantial opening at the bottom of the dust cover, which makes for a nice escape opening for foreign objects.
The G41 is a hand-filling piece of work. After all, the frame is still a G21. However, I had no issue with releasing magazines or slide with the grip adapter provided on this particular piece. The texturing on the G41 is not different than other Glock of the GEN4 series, which means that it is adequate for most – including me.
The grip of the Glock has always evaded my comfort zone. That is not a fault of the Glock. It is just many years of carrying 1911 pistols where my hand is acclimated to a different feel. The trigger is a Glock and that, again, gives me problems. Not that the Glock trigger is any better or worse than any other trigger, it is just different from what I am used to. That means more trigger time is necessary for me to acclimate to the Glock in general. That is a good thing, because I would rather say that after getting used to a pistol different from my normal I began seeing some accuracy in my shooting rather than saying that I cannot shoot the darn thing at all. The question for me was, “How long it is going to take?”
I shot the Springfield well. I shot the S&W Shield well. But, there I was shooting low and left (at first) with the Glock 41. I can’t blame the G41 as it is only doing what I told it to do even though I didn’t know what I told it. The G41 has a nice balance to it and it came down to what I perceive as a communication failure between the ergonomics of the G41 and my hand and trigger finger. Since I could not adjust the ergonomics of the G41, I had better adjust my way of gripping, sighting, and pulling the bang switch. I decided that another trip with the pistol was called for.
Two weeks later, the range G41 GEN4 was pulled off the shelf and into my hands for another session. I was shooting 230-grain FMJ ammunition from Perfecta; a brand that I shoot regularly in my 1911-pistols.
My first two shots were left and low, which is normal for me when shooting a Glock (as well as some others for the first time). I decided to start playing with my grip and I had no doubt the pistol was shooting as it was supposed to. I found that if I pressed my left thumb against the frame, my shots were starting to be in the general vicinity of where I wanted them and rounds were no longer impacting low. However, the shooting left still persisted. Glancing at the rear sight, I noticed that it was at the edge of the slide on the left side; far from being centered on the slide. Being a range pistol, I accepted it for what it was and began compensating by shooting slightly right of my desired point of aim. From that point, bullets started impacted in the area of my desired point of aim. I was starting to shoot consistent with the G41 GEN 4 and by the end of the session (50 rounds) I managed to most of the area above the X. The average “Group” size was 3.5″ at 7-yards (21-feet). Some folks can do that at 25-yards, but I am not one of them.
Because of the G41’s weight, or lack of, I did find myself gripping the pistol more tightly than I would with any of my 1911 pistols – even the lightweight ones. The G41 took a lot more of my concentration to operate correctly. The pistol shot a wee bit high and I had to pull my sight picture down a wee bit to compensate for this. I like to have the bore aligned with what I want to hit at fighting distances. This was more of a “text book” 6 o’clock hold, but that was alright, because I strive to persevere.
The trigger on the G41 GEN4 is typical Glock and, as usual, I usually have a fight with the stock Glock trigger. If this were “my” range gun or competition piece, the trigger would definitely be worked over (I have a shooting buddy that has a G19 GEN4 with a trigger closer to a 1911 than any I have experienced so far in a Glock pistol).
So, would I buy the G41 GEN4? Since I have a G21 GEN3, the answer is no. However, if I did not currently own a G21, then I would probably have a G41 GEN4. Of course, if I didn’t already have a G30SF, I would probably opt for the G30S that, to me, is a better carry option for CC than the G41 GEN4. With that said, some folks could get by with the G41 GEN4 for CC.
It is unfortunate that the price of Glock pistols is pretty much regulated and strictly enforced by Glock and there is little, if any, bargaining power to be had at dealerships.
MSRP on the Glock G41 GEN4 is around the $679 mark. And, that is without the MOS feature. That is a healthy chunk of change by anyone’s standard. But, if you definitely want a Glock you have to pay to play. It all comes down to if the G41 GEN4 is worth the money to you.
I like “long-slide” pistols and the G41 GEN4 certainty fits in that category. I am almost tempted to trade my Springfield XDm 5.25 for one, but that temptation has not quite got a hold of me yet.
DON’ TAKE MY WORD FOR IT!
Massad Ayoobs take on the G41: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5_Sd5gcq7Q
Hickok45’s take on the G41: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95YAUBUK4rA