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Range Report: Gen 3/Gen 4 Mod 23- .40 cal

Discussion in 'General Glocking' started by Pier23, Mar 17, 2012.

  1. Pier23


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    Feb 26, 2012

    Just got back from the indoor range where I was able to do a quick comparo among my Gen 3 23, Gen 4 23 and my cherished Beretta 9000S .40 cal.

    Now, I had better claim my biases up front. I love the Beretta... always have loved Berettas. The 9000S is a stunning piece of industrial design, a beautiful piece to look at. I have one of the four pieces sold... a guy purchased one for Tom Cruise to use in the movie "Minority Report" -- Beretta and I are stilll looking for the other two puchasers. In short, the 9000S was not a commercial success for Beretta and has since been discontinued.

    Perhaps for good reason, for in this modest shootoff of 200 rounds, the Beretta faired the worst of the three. But I am getting ahead of the story.

    The Gen3 23 is a lightly-used NYPD castoff. The Gen4 is NIB, this was the first time I had put any rounds through it. The Beretta has maybe a 1000 rounds through it in its life.

    In terms of dimensions, the Beretta has perhaps a 1.5 inch shorter barrel, is substantially heavier being all metal and holds 10-.40 cal rounds in the thumb-released magazine. It is a conventional hammer-operated weapon with a manual safety/decocker on the left side. The Beretta also features a tip-barrel not unlike the Glock, but perhaps a bit more pronounced. I have never had feed/extract issues with the Beretta.

    The ammo used was PMC Bronze, 180 grain FMJ-FP - considered range ammo by my dealer/range operator.

    I had three very arbitrary experiments: working combat range at 15 feet, close quarters rapid-fire range at 7 feet, and the what the hell, let's see what happens at 75 feet, the furthest distance the range offered.

    Now, here is what I found interesting. Both the Gen3 and Gen4 ate the PMC Bronze without issue. I had no failures of any kind, and each has perhaps 80 rounds run through them. The Beretta had perhaps 40 run through it, 200 rounds total.

    The Gen3 and Gen4 proved well mannered and well-suited -- for different types of situations - and here was the surpirse. For example, at 7 ft rapid fire distance, my Gen3 was significantly - though not devastatingly - more accurate than the Gen4. Now... of the 10 rounds fired, I had 8 of 10 rounds in the black with the Gen3, two of those in the X ring. The Gen4 offered 6 in the black, none in the X ring.

    This was rapid fire, point and shoot, one-handed, I was feeding my inner gansta, though the weapons were pointed vertically, not horizontally.

    The Gen4 does have the medium backstrap on it, so the grips are a bit different.

    As for longer ranges, the 15 ft. plinks, the Gen3 and Gen4 were remarkably similar. The Gen3 results tended to be a little higher and left than the Gen4. But in terms of groupings, the Gen4 groups tended to be tighter than the Gen3. Now, I say this with some "groups" being defined roughly by the size of the target. I am not being courted by GSSF to head the national team at present. But, I am good enough to see where the lead is flying, and in general, the Gen4 is giving me tighter groups than the Gen3.

    I don't know if this is due to the grip adapter, or the new spring or the different sights.

    In terms of recoil, the Gen4 does have a gentler feel, but not radically so. In a sense, the Gen4 recoil is more of a longer push than a sharp thrust. Noticeable if the Gen3 and Gen4 is each fired back to back, but not dramatically different from one to the other. Each recoil has a different flavor, but the meal is the same, if that makes sense.

    At the 75 ft. range, the Gen4 was grouping more tightly for me than the Gen3, but again, not dramatically so. And at that range, the inclination of the Gen3 to drift left was more pronounced. And here I am not faulting the weapon, this left drift was just the way I was landing the slugs. So I am thinking this might be a grip difference or the sights. I do like the Gen4 sights better than the Gen3.

    Which gets us back to (doubtless you were wondering) the Beretta. If it worked for Tom Cruise in "Minority Report", surely it would have been marvelous fun to fire.

    The recoil is substantially sharper than the Glocks, possibly due to the shorter barrel and the shorter grip. My groups tended to drift right and low, at 75ft, this amounted to about an 8 - 10 inch low hit area from point of aim.

    But, at the 15 ft range, I was getting 7 of 10 rounds in the black, though none in the X ring, and the groupings were substantiallly less clustered. Meaning, I was pretty much landing lead all over the place. But in combat terms, I would have taken out the opponent , so I am not incompetent with the Beretta, but I clearly have better results with the Glocks.

    To those who are debating "Gen3 or Gen4" I am personally leaning toward perferring the Gen4, but the margin is narrow.

    As a first-time Glock user, this was an interesting experience for me. And I wonder what will happen when the Gen4 loosens up?

    I didn't notice a big difference in either the Gen3 or Gen4 trigger.

    BUT... after firing the Gen3, then the Gen4, I picked up the Beretta and squeezed the trigger, and heard ..... nothing....

    Oh... yeah...manual forgets things like that when dealing with an "always on" piece like the Glocks....
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2012
  2. plouffedaddy


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    Apr 1, 2011
    Glad to hear you were feeling you inner gangsta! :rofl: Good report brother.:thumbsup: