The History of the Glock Brand
The Glock brand offers some of the most recognizable firearms and compact pistols in the entire world.
Spending years perfecting their craft, the tenacious company is preparing to celebrate nearly four
decades of success as the leading manufacturer of pistols worldwide. Their carefully engineered arms
are perfectly matched to the increasingly formidable expectations of both national and local military and
police operations across the globe.
What makes Glock so special? Not only is this brand fully committed to excellence and integration of
modern design, but their belief in responsible gun ownership is simply world-class.
Every success story has its origin, and the history behind the Glock brand helps to bring a better
understanding to the company's continuous pursuit of perfection.
The Glock 17 prototype pistol was invented in 1982 by company founder Gaston Glock. An adept businessman, Gaston had no real knowledge of firearms during the development of his first weapon in the late 1970s. However, a 1980 announcement by the Austrian Armed Forces that sought a new pistol to replace their older weapons was too great an opportunity to pass up.
Gathering together a group of trusted manufacturers, scientists, and engineers, Gaston put together a prototype model of the Glock 17 in a little under three months. He took his inspiration from hundreds of gun owners in private and public sectors to create a list of the most desirable gun characteristics available. Even though he knew very little about firearms, Gaston had extensive experience designing elements containing synthetic polymers, using his knowledge to design an anticorrosion treatment for intricate parts with a high risk for rusting.
Two years later in 1982, the first generation Glock 17 outperformed all other pistol competitors to emerge victorious as the Austrian Government's new firearm of choice. Not only did the pistol have an endurance unlike anything else, but its polymer body and sleek construction allowed for reasonable manufacturing and an overall lower price than many of the other designs submitted.
The Five Different Generations of Glocks
Over the course of Glock's forty year reign in the industry, five unique generations of firearms have been released to the public. Each significantly improves upon previous blueprints while also remaining true to the original design.
- Second Generation - 1988: This mid-life update to the Glock 17 added checkering on the front strap and serrations to the back strap. An embedded steel plate in front of the trigger guard was stamped with an individualized serial number, helping to meet new American regulations.
- Third Generation - 1988: This generation saw updates to the frame of the pistols with Universal Glock Rails that allowed spacing for lights, sights, and tactical accessories. As the later years of 'Gen3' progressed, modified safety features like indicators and locking blocks were updated. A locking block pin was added to bolt thrust forces against the locking blocks.
- Fourth Generation - 2010: The Glock 17 has solidified itself as one of the most game-changing pistols ever to have been invented, but the Glock 23 of the fourth generation provided a rare opportunity to surpass it. Released in 2010, this pistol has a heavier build with modified slide, barrel, and magazine capacity. The 13 round capacity is one of the most conspicuous updates.
- Fifth Generation - 2017: With an increased focus on efficiency and reliability, updated versions of the Glock 17 and 19 were released with a characteristic 'diamond-like' carbon finish. The flared magazines and crescent shaping on the grip optimizes this handgun for both use and price point.
Glock is one of the most impressive firearm manufacturers in the entire world. From its humble beginnings to its status as America's favorite firearm brand, the legacies of their pistols are here to stay.