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Article The .45 GAP

By Overkill338, Jan 24, 2017 | | |
  1. Overkill338
    Created by Ernest Durham in 2002, an engineer with Speer at the time. He did so at the request of Glock to create a cartridge with equal power to the .45 ACP, but be stronger in the neck area to lower risk of blow outs there, and also let it fit in the 9x19 & .40 S&W sized handguns. Of course GAP stood for "Glock Auto Pistol". No sooner than this cartridge hit public knowledge we started hearing "it will be gone in 10 years". I laughed just last week as I was in a local gun store and heard the same thing. "the .45 GAP will be obsolete in 10 years" and I couldn't help but reply with "yeah, that's the same thing they said in 2003.

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    The .45 GAP operates at the same PSI as the .45 ACP +P pressures and pretty well matches the standard ACP's performance. The Glock 37 holds 10+1, the Glock 38 holds 8+1 (yes same as a 1911 in a smaller lighter package), and the Glock 39 holds 6+1. I personally carried a Glock 39 for several years and never felt under gunned with those 200 grain Gold Dots. Then there is extra comfort in having a Glock 37 mag as your backup. Maybe it was just me but I always found them to be very soft shooters considering they match the ACP +P pressures, and accuracy always came easy as well.

    GT 45.jpg

    The .45 GAP has a lot going for it when you really break it down. Sure , I know you're probably thinking "why do we need another .45 Auto when John Moses gave us the most perfect invention since sliced bread". Now why I do agree, J.M. Browning was a genius far ahead of his time, I do believe he would have liked the .45 GAP and may have been right there with the gunny pushing it. Lets look at this from a perspective recently brought up in a Glock Talk conversation. The .45 GAP is to the .45 ACP what the .40 S&W is to the 10mm Auto. Who's to say if the .45 GAP had hit first, that the .40 S&W might be barely holding its nose above water? You get smaller frame guns that almost any fingers can grip, plus, the GAP isn't as down on power vs the ACP as the .40 is to the 10mm. Had that one butterfly in China had flapped its wings at the right right time, our 1911 grips would be smaller, Glock 37/38/39 would be selling like hot cakes, and us 10mm lovers wouldn't have that horrible .40 Short & Weak bothering us.

    GT 45 2.jpg
    There are many LEA's carrying the .45 GAP, but I cant seem to find a master list. I think the Alaska St Troopers do, as do the city police in Mt Airy, NC, I think GA is on that list as well.

    I do recommend you give one a try at least once. If you can carry a Glock 19/23/32, then you can carry a G38 just as easy. The slide of the GAP's is a little wider 1.18" and loaded a G38 weighs 31.95oz, try that with a 1911! Lets face it, as gun enthusiasts, we hate to see any gun disappear, or go into expensive collector only status. Go out, find someone who still rents them, or watch GunBroker for deals. I got my OD Green G39 for $380, and found it well worth it.

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    slamdunc, bmrtoyo, AgentM79 and 4 others like this.

Recent User Reviews

  1. BlueStateSaint
    "Good and informative"
    I know that the New York State Police have used them for a decade or so. The one shooting that I know of using the .45 GAP was last spring, where the firearms instructor for Troop B in Ray Brook (west of Lake Placid) hit an escaped felon with two rounds. The first one was a 50-yard, quartering away shot; the second was at 55 yards, as the felon was falling to the ground.

    Good article on the backstory of the .45 GAP.
  2. AgentM79
    "45GAP; still a good idea!"
    This article gives a brief summary of the virtues of the .45GAP cartridge. I like the round in my G39, but see the round's future as uncertain. If Glock makes the guns that fire GAP fit 9mm holsters, it will likely see increased LE use. If they ever make their 45ACP guns fit those same holsters, though, I think GAP will be an enthusiast's round only.
  3. Sherlock Glock
    "The Great 45 GAP"
    Super artical. I bought the first G37 that came in the DFW area. I also bought 2,000 rounds of ammo. When I worked the GSSF, I always ask only for the 45 GAP brass. I now have over 7,000 rounds of brass. I have many good loads that shoot very accurate. I have short fingers and the standard frame fits fine. I have both the G37 & G38. Had the G39 but traded it


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  1. Shaquanda
    baah humbug long live the 9mm
  2. BigMick
    I'm going to try to pick one up as soon as I finish spending money on a couple other projects. I have always been curious about the gap and it seems like a good idea. The only problem I foresee with it is ammo availability and cost.
  3. Joseph Senko
    I own one that has the chrome slide, SS barrel and a SS Guide Rod. I added night sights. Used this as my duty pistol when I did high risk security in the streets of Charlotte. Easy to carry, two extra mags. It is accurate to a fault because of the barrel is match target. The carry ammo is from Mag Tech 230 gr. 1100 fps. and about 545 ft. lbs. That is hard hitting. It a +P+ and the 37 digest this all day. Love this firearm.
      bmrtoyo likes this.
  4. ssgrock3
    I got a 37 also and would love a deal on a 38. At least an article about the Gap.
  5. bmrtoyo
    i must be odd ,,ive got a 37 ,and i like the gun and the round .soft shooting and it packs a punch ,and the gun is just accurate , ive got it on the nightstand on bump in the night duty ,loaded with federal 185 gr hydra-shock's ,, 1090 fps and 490 ft pounds ,, i always like the underdogs they say the 10 mm is going belly up and im never parting with my glock 20 either .
      StLJohn likes this.
    1. Overkill338
      The 10mm is going right the opposite. Back to the top, to shut up all the "45 Acp" is king crowd. Underwoods 200gr 45 Acp +P from a 5" barrel gets 1100fps. My Glock 29 averaged around 1140 fps with Underwood 200gr bullets and that's from a 3.78" barrel.
    2. bmrtoyo
      yes i think the 29 sf is next on the list along with a 30 sf lol decisions decisions .
  6. ca survivor
    I understand that the FHP is not too happy with their GAPs
  7. StLJohn
    Don't own one now, but intrigued by its potential. Love my 30S, so doubt a GAP would split up that romance? Not being a reloader, I would hate to see it's availability dwindle even more. But Speer seems to have gone all in with this round, so probably not an issue for as long as this old boy has left to shoot?
    1. bmrtoyo
      Im not saying its the invention of the decade , but the slimmer grip and the accuracy are great , i just stumbled on mine ,it works ,time will tell . if a 39 came up at the recent police trade in prices id pack it . { i have no idea what the lines thru my post are about?}
      StLJohn likes this.
  8. erichensler1967
    Thanks for taking the time to write on this subject. I had written the GAP off because my local gun store owner asked me why the heck (sanitized by me :)) I would wanna buy a Glock chambered in such a weak round. I figured he knew of which he spoke so I skipped the GAP (I can't remember which model). As I recall it was at a really good price too. Live and learn.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. Overkill338
      Always do your own research. And also study your LGS as much as possible. Ask questions you know the answer to, to see if they know their arse from a muzzle hole.
      StLJohn likes this.
    3. bmrtoyo
      I Am my local lgs ,,most of those kids in there are to busy strolling around ,this kid tells me " browning high power's are junk" , i said son ive been shooting guns before youre daddy hatched you out of the egg crate, and you really have no idea what you are saying do you ?
    4. Overkill338
      I've done my dues at Gun Shops, and gun shows, and I tell ya, the Call of duty kids are the worst. "Can I see the Scar, can I see the scar?"
      StLJohn likes this.
  9. BlueStateSaint
    The New York State Police use the round as their service handgun round. Last spring (June 2016, IIRC), the firearms instructor for Troop B fired two shots from his Glock 37 and hit an escaped murderer both times at ranges of 50 and 55 yards. The escaped murderer was quartering away from the trooper at the time. (He was less than two miles from the US/Canada border as well.)

    I thought that the NYSP should never have gone from their Glock 17s to the 37; but, they knew a tad better. Now that the FBI has decided that the 9mm Parabellum is the ultimate handgun round, I wonder if the NYSP will go back to it (in the G19 form this time).
    1. 762DM
      No, they are transitioning to the G21 Gen4 for uniform and G30 Gen4 for plain clothes carry.
  10. Grovenator
    I have the same words for the .45 GAP as I've had for the .40 S&W, every "short, super duper, extra fantastic mag." rifle that ever came out and many other gadgets and such. Nope, nope and nope. I'll stick with what I KNOW works and that I already have all the kit for. It's just to sell more guns and such. Marketing.
      SwabbyK likes this.