Glock's and Disability!

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What would you do if you lost some mobility in your hands?

This brief article is just one example of what I did to accommodate my disability to use my Glock.

Everyone thinks arthritis is for the aged, I'm here to let you in on a secret that Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an Autoimmune disease that effects the joints in anyone at any age! I was diagnosed when I was 13 years old, I am now in my mid 50's. I was informed by my doctors I have already lost more than 50% of my hand strength. I have had 3 surgeries on my hands & elbows and preparing for my 4th in May 2016. After so many years of dealing with this disease and the loss of strength in my hands have caused me to rethink my firearm carry, training and practice.

When faced with any disability everything changes in your life, including self-defense. The things you never thought about and took for granted are no longer in your grasp to perform. There are so many health aide products on the market for many different disabilities: canes, walkers, wheelchairs, transportation chairs, transfer devises, modified vehicles to drive with your hands, modified vans to lift wheelchairs into driver seats, modification to car computer systems for the deaf (they haven't done this for the blind yet, just wait its coming), special gripped kitchen utensils, cups & glasses, hearing aids and sound modifiers, even our smartphones are programmable for hands-free operation in or out of our vehicles. I was unable to find a firearm that is designed for a person with any hand limitations. This brings me to why I love my Glock's!

When I moved from New Jersey (the most unfriendly 2nd amendment state) to Florida (a very friendly 2nd Amendment Stand your ground state), I felt it was time I would defend myself in and out of my home.

My first year in Florida I went to my very first Suncoast Gun Show, and I was in awe, I had my mind set on a sub-compact like a Beretta Nano or Glock 26. I learned to shoot on a .38 special and an ex Philly Police Officer's service revolver. I also was able to use my brother's Glock's 17 & 19, along with his Smith & Wesson .357 magnum. I've rented several others and none felt right like the Glock's do in my hands. During this visit my husband (whom I love dearly and he means well) and the sales person from one of the Florida gun stores had a long conversation, (that I wasn't involved in to say the least.) They decided due to my limitations the best firearm for me would be a Beretta Tomcat .32 ACP. I have to say it was a cute little firearm, not what I wanted though it was already bought and paid for by my darling. (Apparently, it isn't proper to refer to a firearm as "cute", after all it is a weapon) Okay, I hated it! I tried it, I didn't like it at all; the trigger was too hard to pull with no hand/finger strength, it would constantly bruise my hand and it had a kick on the recoil that isn't present on my Glock 26 & 42. After a lot of distraught, misfires, costs to unjam the flip barrel I told my husband it wasn't going to work. Eventually he went to another gun show and brought home a Glock 26, the conceal carry gun I was actually happy with.

Glock

Well, sort of happy with it. The factory trigger pull on most firearms, Glock included is 5 lb. Yes, I can pull the trigger but it is difficult to fire multiple shots with the pain in my hands. This led me to consider the following modifications to the Glock 26 with a Ghost trigger and the slide stop extension.

BEFORE, you start modifying any firearm you MUST look into the state laws and repercussions of those modifications, especially the trigger.

Prior to any modifications I spoke with my attorney, she advised me that I should find a physician that is Pro 2nd Amendment (which I already had anyway) and to discuss what I planned to modify and requested he write a letter or statement, have it notarized and keep it on file in her office and a copy somewhere easily accessible by me and my family. This is in preparation if ever engaged in a self-defense incident involving the modified firearm. After all altercations of self-defense involving a shooting the firearm is confiscated and held as evidence for both criminal and/or civil defenses. These attorneys will argue the firearm was modified specifically to kill/harm the assailant. The letter had to state that due to my disability I would have had no other means to defend myself with my own firearm, and other means were out of my ability.

The modifications I made to the Glock 26 consists of: the trigger pull is now a 3.5 lb.

Ghost Ultimate 3.5 Connector Cost: 26.95 + tax (don't forget gunsmiths fee)

Glock

Most training facilities such as Front Sight Firearm Training Institute and most competition groups frown upon this modification. If you have followed the advice of your attorney and have a copy of the physician's letter most will make exceptions.

Glock Extension Slide Stop Lever Cost: 17.95 + tax (again don't forget the gunsmith)

Glock

The modification to the slide stop lever with an extension making it easier to lock the slide, which is a fine motor skill for those of us with finger limitations.

The Glock Store information states: "The Glock Extended Slide Stop Lever also reduces recovery time for both strong and weak hands."

Glock

Eventually even the 26 became too heavy for me to use as everyday carry, so once again hubby decides to help: He then traded the Beretta Tomcat 3032 for a Keltec P-3AT, (yes the guy who bought his wife the Keltec didn't like it so the two of them thought the switch would satisfy both of us. NOT A CHANCE.) The Keltec is basically a Ruger LCP with a different manufacture, the specifications are almost identical. Now, after using my husband's Ruger SC9 it was agreed that I have a tiny bit of a wrist snap that with EVERY SINGLE SHOT of the Ruger it jams, this has happened on every Ruger I have tried. I carry the Keltec only on occasion such as when walking the dogs in the neighborhood. I don't have much fear of 2 legged assailants in the neighborhood, we have 4 legged assailants; coyotes and bobcats roaming around, so the Keltec is fine for the conceal as it is low profile for pocket carry.

Glock

The size difference is visible as in this photo:


Glock

After this debate with my husband I was able to order a Glock 42 a few months after its release from The Glock Store. Glock 42 is my everyday carry pistol and I love the accuracy of it, even without any modifications. It is light weight so I haven't modified to the pistol, the low recoil profile makes it easier for me to fire with my disability. There was an article called The 42 A Year Later, it described the accuracy of the 42 and how much easier to handle and is becoming very popular among women.

My Glocks

Glock

HINT: NEVER BUY ANYONE A FIREARM WITHOUT THEM AGREEING ON IT. IT IS LIKE BUYING SOMEONE A WALLET/PURSE ITS TOO PERSONAL!

Sources and Links to referenced sites:

http://www.floridagunshows.com/

http://www.beretta.com/en-us/3032-tomcat-inox/#Features

http://www.glockstore.com/Ghost-Ultimate-3-5-Connector-drop-in

http://www.glockstore.com/Glock-Ext-Slide-Stop-Lever


http://www.keltecweapons.com/our-guns/pistol/p-3at


http://www.gunsamerica.com/blog/the-glock-42-one-year-later/


http://www.frontsight.com/


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13 COMMENTS
Posted: 
July 21, 2016  •  03:37 PM
Great article! Thanks for sharing your experiences!
 
Posted: 
August 29, 2016  •  10:22 AM
I have arthritis in my basal joint in both hands. The lift hand was "fixed" and I still have issues with strength and dexterity. Went to a Mag-30 class earlier this month for the first time and found the limits of my hands and weapons. Ruger P95, Glock 30 and a S&W model 15-2. Shot so much with the semi autos that they got to dirty to function. My hands gave out and I was not able to finish the qualification. Good to know my limits and those of the weapons.
 
Posted: 
September 1, 2016  •  01:36 PM
GunTottinGranny....I am so glad to read your article and the others...I'm a 75 young gal who has been shooting and riding horses all my life...very active and next month I will be 75 and NOW I have wrist and thumb Osteo!!! First off, I don't tell any of my doctors that I shoot, etc. don't want anything in my file the way things are, so when he asks me my activities I include ARCHERY!...I get a shot now, just every 6 months that helps me with inflamation all over my body and it works for six months....yeah!...I just went to a local gun show because MS had TAX FREE DAY for guns and ammo....and I refused to like the Glocks...then I shot with several, one at a time, and couldn't get more accurate, so I thought, that's it, I'm tired of recoil, wrist pain, screamin out when racking, etc....so I looked for the new Glock 42...which you said you liked...thanks, I love this gun...my instructor told me NOT to get the 42 to get the 43, like I ever listened to a man, hahaha...I got it in the Dark Earth color...and am once again happy to get up each morning and go shoot my GLOCK!...I'm going to Glock everybody to death (no pun intended).....getting glock tees, glock stickers, glock holsters...we older girls are matchy matchy girls...so will get everything that goes with Dark Earth! lol, just wanted to say THANK YOU FOR A GREAT COMMENT and advice...love it! Also glad you reviewed the Tomcat cause I had shown one to one of my new shooting friend...and glad she didn't want it...and like you said, It's so cute!...lol
 
Posted: 
September 11, 2016  •  03:04 AM
Thank you so much for this article. I am a 53yr USAF disabled Vet. My hands were hurt in a accident. Also I have an amputated trigger finger. Glocks are the only gun so far that fits my hand. I do have a S&W J frame 640-1 .357 mag. She is a little beastie. So with her I only do .38's, but in training I do .357. I might look into the G43. However, my G19 gen4 has served me well. No complaints, with her ugly cute self.
 
Posted: 
September 29, 2016  •  11:42 AM
@BuzzinSATX thanks I am glad I could share my experience with others.
 
Posted: 
September 29, 2016  •  11:49 AM
@CSparky Sorry to hear about your limitations during a shoot. I know that having difficulties with our hands is much more than just shooting. It changes how we perform a lot of daily activities. My husband and I have changed so much in our lives because of my disability, for both hands and legs.

If I could say I was lucky to have known about my disease early in life isn't really luck, but it made a difference on how a lived my life and how much better prepared I am than those just finding out.

Modifications of any firearm can be used against us in court but if you have an attorney you can trust, let them know now why you have modified. I am lucky that in Florida my doctors are all pro-gun. Not sure on my Rheumatologist she is from Switzerland so not sure how their Socialist country handles firearms.

I remember reading one of the countries: Sweden or Switzerland require everyone to own a firearm in their home and their crime rate is Null and void of violent crimes.... i'll have to research that one.
 
Posted: 
September 29, 2016  •  12:03 PM
@RamBow I am so glad you have become a GLOCK Gal! The Glock Store sells a T-Shirt Glock Girl fairly inexpensive...I have several.

@RamBow and @Progresstruth you should both check out a The Well Armed Woman gun organization that is nationwide. I bring this up because they are sponsored by Glock and as a member you are entitled to discounts on Glock Firearms.

http://thewellarmedwoman.com/

The membership is $50.00 per year, see if they have a chapter near you. They have three near me and we can get co-memberships for an extra 15.00. They do that because of so many seniors here in florida belong to them here and in their home states. Check it out I love the monthly meetings, the additional articles geared towards women, especially the holster's and self-defense.

When I was younger and living in Philly and New Jersey I always thought i wanted a Walther PPK .380 but shot it and didn't like it... i have to say i do like my Glock's...

An Glock Armorer explained that Glock's will stay functional even after 1000k rounds shot through them. It's not advisable but possible. Glocks are very forgiving on its ammo, except: stainless steel... always use brass. Im not sure I have to check certain Ammo can void the warranty.

Another important thing to do...make sure you register your Glock with Glock.Com for the warranty. If you do not register it when there are recalls you will not be notified! Think of it like your vehicle you want notification of all recalls due to safety reasons, its the same for you firearms, as a firearm is just as dangerous to let go with out the proper maintenance.

@progresstruth Thank you for your service, it is an honor to make your acquaintance. I have family members still active in the military and pray for all of you every day!
 
Posted: 
October 10, 2016  •  12:20 AM
@BuzzinSATX This article really hit home... I have severe arthritis also and I've had to accommodate accordingly... Thanks for sharing
 
Posted: 
December 20, 2016  •  01:09 AM
While I haven't found one available for the 42/43, the AmbiPlate slide racker assist might be a good option to help those of you with similar afflictions or limitations...

https://www.amazon.com/Glock-Speed-Racker-Optics-Models/dp/B00N53XF0G

I have one on my G22 and like the added grip when pulling back the slide.
 
Posted: 
February 17, 2017  •  02:03 AM
Great article, I have a thumb joint out of wack for some time now.
I've also been looking at the 380 as a defense carry in the Glock 42. I'm thinking the popularity of the 380, technology will advance like the 9mm has.

We don't get to the range much. But I have acreage that I can practice a few shots as needed. Along with enough Kel-tecs to supply a small gun store. As soon as the snow goes we will be shooting the P3ATs, P32s, P11s and others!

Thanks for the encouragement
 
Posted: 
February 26, 2017  •  03:40 PM
Good article, thank you. I just turned 50 and I'm a retired police officer. I've been retired for five years now but a year into my retirement I was diagnosed with Systemic Lupus so I kind of know what you're going through. Just stay strong man.
 
Posted: 
March 31, 2017  •  09:21 PM
Have you ever tried the G43? If so, what did you think of it compared to the G42?
 
Posted: 
April 2, 2017  •  09:30 PM
MisterX: I can only tell you when I told my instructor I was buying the G42 he screamed "get the G43 instead" then I made the mistake of asking him "why?". So he couldn't hit the broad side of a barn with the 42 and could hit everything even with his eyes closed! Yep, I still wanted the 42. Sorry guys, but there are very few men who can make decisions for me! lol...hard headed young 75 year old that I am...so my Glock 42 NEVER misses where I am aiming and NEVER FTF....at xmas we have a shooting frenzy, with family and friends over, all shooters, some Marines, active and retired and one National Guard Army....about 10 people shot my Glock...everyone of them were as accurate as can be, some newbies, etc. but did anyone mention how "cute" it was? Ha, I don't care, I have total confidence when I carry it each day!..oh, I added two extra bullets to the magazines...and installed them myself...almost lost my mind, but got it done...so instead of six, I now have eight rounds and in a very nice color!!! How cute! lmao
 
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