A Glock 30 Short Frame Review
I have been provided the materials needed for this review. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.
I like the idea of not trying to be in the first wave of bloggers to review a firearm. I prefer to wait a year after a product comes out to review it because it means I have a chance to request to spend more time with a firearm. That way I get to know it more mindfully without worrying about the other reviewers waiting in the long line to test a firearm out.
I own a few Glocks and my favorite of all of them is my Gen 2 G21 .45ACP 13 round pistol. I requested the Glock 30SF for review about 5 months back, after seeing it at SHOT Show 2014. I have always been someone who loves the .45ACP over just about any other pistol cartridge, because of the size of the round.
I like knowing I have the power and punch that comes with the .45ACP cartridge. The old saying about carry a bigger stick comes to mind. I do not believe that this love of the .45acp affects or deters my abilities to do my job when looking at different calibers with an objective view point. Let’s face it, they are all fun to shoot.
Glock 30SF Specs
Caliber: .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol)
Barrel Length: 3.77”
Trigger Pull: 5.5 pounds
Mag Capacity: 10 rounds (standard) 13 Rounds (using Glock 21 mags)
As I said, I requested more time with this gun to get 1 or 2 more rounds down range. This brought my round count to around 2500 rounds of ball and jacketed hollow points. I never holstered this pistol, as I use a large frame drop leg holster at the range.
When I first pulled the Glock 30 SF out of the box, the empty mags wouldn’t drop freely. I loaded the mags with 10 rounds each and fired all 20 rounds. After that, they had no problem falling free when I hit the mag release.
My groupings were better when I was running my Glock 21 mags out of the pistol because I had more real estate to grip the gun with allowing for better control. The 10 round mags just barely allowed for my pinky to be on the gun, not giving me as tight of a grip. The difference was a stray round left or right after shooting a few mags.
Normally I don’t worry about keeping review guns clean after every range trip. I like to see how they handle and if they slow down as they get dirtier. I didn’t do that with the Glock 30SF because I didn’t feel there was a need to test something that had been shown for years that even dirty, they work.
I cleaned the gun after every range day and the most rounds put through it at any one time was 800 rounds of Federal American Eagle Pistol .45 ACP 230 Grain FMJ which in my opinion is decently “clean” ammo compared to the Wolf and Tula Steel case. There was just really no good reason to torture test this pistol. When I opened it up, I saw exactly what I expected.
One thing I have always noted with Glock is that they typically will shoot any brand or ammo type I run through them. I tested a box of brand new Tula steel case. After 5 light primer strikes without any ignition I switched the ammo to my 1911 and didn’t have any problems with the ammo. I have seen this problem before using the Wolf barrel on my Glock 21. However, when using the factory barrel, this was never an issue. I believe this was caused by the Tula primers being seated deeper than spec.
The brands I used:
· Federal (230 Grain ball)
· Wolf Polyformance (230 Grain ball)
· HPR JHP (230 Grain Jacketed hollow point)
· Monarch Brass (230 Grain ball)
· Monarch Steel (230 Grain ball)
· CCI Blazer Aluminum (230 Grain ball)
· Monarch Brass (185 Grain JHP)
· And a few other brands from people who shot the gun with ammo they brought.
In The Box
1 Glock 30SF
2 10 Round Factory Mags
2 Spent brass from the proofing department at Glock
1 “speed” Loader
1 .45 caliber nylon bore brush
1 Plastic Cleaning rod
1 cable lock
The “Speed” Loader
The speed loader they ship is a good thought, in theory, but in my hands it was slow and frustrating to use. I was always faster hand loading each mag than using the speed loader provided.
When trying to load the .45s into the magazine you still have to push the previous round down as the loader doesn’t offer enough room for the brass to slide in. The efforts are almost that of hand loading the mag without the use of your thumb on the round. This seems like more procedure and steps to just load one round.
I do own a Maglula for pistols I found that I was faster using that then by hand. The speed loader isn’t bad; it just did not work well for me. A few of the other crew members had better luck with it. Everyone did agree, in the end that the Maglula was the fastest.
My Sister and the .45
After getting out of college, my father and I figured if my sister was going to be living alone she needed a pistol to keep at her place. My sister has grown up around guns. She enjoys shooting with me every now and then.
She likes my Glock 21 and is a fairly decent shot with it. I did not want to part with my Glock 21. When I heard one of my friends was selling his Glock 22, I jumped on it and picked it up for a really great price. I thought about giving it to her, but I just like it too much.
My sister has always lived within a 40 minute drive from my folks so we were never worried about her. Recently she has been looking for another job outside of the state. She has also been expressing more and more interest in getting her conceal carry.
I looked at a few pistols for her but it always came back to wanting the .45acp. I view conceal carry pistols as something you should WANT to shoot. If you enjoy shooting it, you are more likely to train more with it than something you just carry because you were told to.
I have taken her to the range with us a number of times to get some trigger time with this pistol and her comment is always the same “so this is my new gun right”? “You are letting me keep this one because it fits me and I like it”
For Christmas I have ordered a Glock 30SF for her but now I am sitting here wishing I had ordered one for myself. You just can’t have too many guns, right???
The Glock 30SF has a rail for a light or laser mount. I don’t currently own any pistol lights or lasers due in part to the fact that I haven’t found one that has sparked my interest yet. I honestly haven’t looked that hard either. I am always open to recommendations.
I would equate the recoil to that of the larger Glock 21. This surprised me the first time I shot it as I was expecting a little harsher recoil. Later, I put one in each hand (the 21 and the 30SF) and I could feel that were pretty close to the same weight. I guess I should not have been surprised.
Conceal Carry Note
At this time in my life I do not conceal carry. 90% of the time I leave the house, the place I am going will not allow me to enter with a pistol. This makes for a tough choice for me, do I carry in my truck and risk someone breaking into the truck because it is older or do I leave my gun at home and just pray I am never in a place where I need it? I tend to keep my gun at home. One of the crew members is a police officer and I am normally within arm’s length of him. On top of that I live in a good area with very low crime.
I want to tell you that my shot groups looked like I only hit the target with one round. The truth is, even if the gun was that accurate I am not that skillful. The subcompact design is not meant for competition shooters, it is meant for conceal carry. In a conceal carry situation you are not going to try and engage the target at 300 yards like you see in the movies. This pistol, for me, was just as accurate as any of my other Glocks. I can hit a man size silhouette at 50 yards.
I have been a fan of Glocks’ for years (I know, you couldn’t tell). The subcompact Glock 30 SF is just another in a long line of quality pistols they are known for. While picking up this pistol from my FFL I was asked if I wanted to purchase their Glock 43 Single Stack 9mm. My only comment was, why mess with 9mm when you can have the power of a .45acp?
I wish I could get more range time with this pistol just because it is fun to shoot. If you get the chance to send some lead down range running this pistol I highly recommend it.
Gift Giving Suggestions
As said earlier in this article, I will be gifting this gun to my sister. That being said, she has shot many different calibers and pistols. She knows how to handle her firearm and herself. She knows she prefers Glocks. This was an easy choice for me.
As it is getting closer to the holiday season I would like to add this word of advice to anyone thinking about buying any pistol as a gift. If the person you are purchasing for owns a lot of firearms as it is and you know for fact they are comfortable with different pistols, go for it. If not, please think about taking them to a store and seeing if they like the pistol first.
I have seen too many couples at the range, where the guy bought a pistol for his significant other without letting her size the gun up first. I see them getting into situations that makes everyone uncomfortable. It can occasionally put them and others in harm’s way since they cannot handle the firearm yet.
Buying a caliber that someone is not comfortable with shooting yet can cause people to be turned off by shooting. It can even cause them to mishandle the firearm and put themselves and other people in a dangerous situation.
Introducing someone to a firearm first is always the safer bet so they get a chance to have some hands on time. They can say whether they like the weight and if they like how the gun shoots. I know you are not always able to test first a gun before you buy it, but it is worth renting that caliber firearm first. I strongly recommend letting the gift receiver try it out at the range to see how they respond. This is always a smart idea. Firearms make a wonderful gift, just make sure it’s a wonderful experience.