Awhile back Dane and I decided to take pistol shooting more seriously. We had gotten so caught up into shooting, competing, building and hand loading for precision rifles we were neglecting our pistol shooting. My Dad would harp on us about working pistol shooting into our precision rifle practice sessions. He advised after practice to shoot at least 50 rounds to keep current and work on fundamentals.
Earlier we had standardized our precision rifles and it was working out great for us so when it came to pistols we decided to do the same thing. Down the road we foresaw participating in IDPA and 3 gun so we wanted to select a pistol that would work for those forms of competition. We also planned to participate in precision rifle matches that incorporated pistol stages like the Utah State Sniper Shoot and Wyoming Tactical Rifle Championship. With our precision rifles having the same cartridge, load, action and magazines has proven to be invaluable so we wanted to replicate that and run the same pistol.
We are both fans of Glock pistols and decided to go with sequential Glock 34 9mm’s. We figured 9mm would get the job done and be inexpensive to shoot versus shooting something like .45 ACP. In the future we could always load it ourselves if we choose which would further bring the cost down. Glock has had a solid reputation since they started so we felt very comfortable with the selection we made.
The G34 is a enlarged G17, it uses the same 17 round magazine and has the same frame. The G34 utilizes a 5.31″ barrel and has 8.81″ slide. The longer slide increases the pistols sight radius (7.55″) aiding in its accuracy. The top front portion of the slide has been removed to decrease weight and allows for after market ported barrels without having to send it off to the gunsmith. On the frame of the pistol it comes equipped from the factory with a extended magazine release and slide release. Because of the longer barrel, size and weight of the pistol recoil is extremely controllable and its very fun to shoot. If you like you can attach accessories to the frame below the front of the slide the same way you would on any other Glock.
Glock’s have a reputation for being very reliable and we can attest to that. We have both ran thousands of rounds through them since we bought them. We have shot them so much we have lost count. The pistols have chewed through self defense ammo, factory loaded ammo and factory reloaded ammo. We have shot different brands and bullet weights and they haven’t been picky with any of them. Malfunctions are so rare we jokingly note them to each other. We don’t often clean our pistols after shooting so that further proves their reliability. I recall cleaning my G34 maybe on two or three occasions and “whipping” it down on a few more. That is all the maintenance mine has undergone. I am good about keeping it lubed though (inside joke).
I have grown very comfortable with my G34 and practicing pistol shooting has gone from a chore to something I enjoy and look forward to doing. At first I thought the long barrel and slide was awkward looking but I now appreciate its weird appearance. The pistol is great the way it is but I am looking forward to sprucing it up a bit with Trijicon sights and maybe a thorough cleaning. I am a bigger fan of Glock pistols than I was before and highly recommend them.