When the Glock 17 hit the market in 1986 I had nothing to do with it. I had a Smith & Wesson model 10 revolver in .38 Special which was the most dependable and popular handgun in the 60's, 70's, and early 80's and I had my cool gun, James Bond's Walther PPK, Lastly I had the gun that real men carried: the Colt Government model in .45 ACP. At that point in time we worshiped at the altar of Jeff Cooper and no self respecting disciple would be caught dead using the ineffective 9mm cartridge nor carry it in a double action pistol which Colonel Cooper decried as a solution to a problem that did not exist. So I declined to shoot or even hold a Glock for the first eight years or so after it was introduced in the U.S.
Fast forward to the middle of the last decade and I had found that Glock's "reason for being" was that it was as dependable as the S&W Model 10. You could bet your life on a Glock 19. And, by this point in time Smith & Wesson had discontinued the model 10 which had been the standard bearer of dependability for the last 50 or so years. The Glock model 19 quickly filled the void left by the discontinued Model 10.
So why spend the money to customize a Glock 19? Why would anyone take a weapon's platform that the maker and legion of it's fans deem to exemplify the personification of "Perfection" and give it a total make-over? Simple. The best gun to use is a base platform for customization is one that is already dependable. This is what happened in the '70's and '80's when people took my beloved Smith and Wesson model 10 and turned it from this:
The venerable model 10 was turned into a race gun for competitive shooters and it all stems from the fact that it was already a good gun made better by talented artisans.
So, just like the S&W model 10; the Glock 19, as good as it is, can be improved upon. So let's see the features that Zev Technologies can bring to the table:
1. The trigger.
The heart and soul of any pistol is it's trigger system. The Zev Defender incorporates Zev's Duty Trigger with the red safety bar. This trigger assembly reduces most of the take-up, eliminates over-travel and smooths and lightens the pull. Zev produces 18 different trigger kits for the Glock 19. Naturally, all of them are drop-in assemblies.
2. Front Sight.
Zev uses a red fiber optic front sight which I find to be preferable to a white dot, a black front sight or even night sights. My aging eyes cause me to see two front blades with every sight option except the red pipe. During shooting conditions where there is any light available, the red fiber optic stands out and only shows me only one front sight.3. Rear Sight.
3. Rear Sight
The rear sight is a perfect match for the red pipe up front. The sight is serrated to break up any glare and being plain black my eyes are drawn to the front sight without any visual disruption from anything on the rear sight panel.
4. Extended Magazine Release.
The magazine release is large and really extends from the grip. The top of the release became the resting place for my right thumb and that set-up never caused me to accidentally depress the release and prematurely dump the magazine. Needless to say it is easy to find and can be pressed without having to adjust your hand position. Whether you are using this pistol for competition or self defense, magazine
5. Extended Slide Stop
The extended slide stop is a feature I can live without. If you prefer to release the slide stop in order to charge the pistol you will be glad it's there. If you sling shot the slide to load a round in the chamber you won't take much notice of the extended lever.
6. Grip Reduction and Stippling
Glock grips are known to be rather "blocky", large and the finger grooves can be a little tight. Zev reduces and recontours the grip and shaves down and widens the finger grooves. They then stipple the grip making it more tacky than either the standard Gen 3 or Gen 4 grip. There is no needs to apply skateboard tape in order to get a firm grasp on the Zev grip.
7. Undercut Trigger Guard
Zev enlarges the trigger undercut of which I am particularly fond. The standard undercut on the factory Glocks is too narrow and does not fit my middle finger. This condition produces the malady of "Glock Knuckle" which causes bruising and the formation of calluses on and around the knuckle of the middle finger. The Zev undercut is the remedy for Glock knuckle.
8. & 9. Rear and Front Slide Cuts
The Zev slide is cut with larger rear grasping grooves while the front grooves are wide, scalloped and extend from the front of the slide to the front of the chamber. Regardless of whether you grasp the slide from the front or read of the slide you will obtain a positive hold.
10. Black DLC Slide Coating. The slide is coated with Diamond Like Carbon (DLC) which gives it a 90 Rockwell Hardness Rating. It is non-reflective and it one tough finish.
This entire package gives you a Glock pistol with superior ergonomics, a terrific trigger and sights that provide premium visibility. Naturally the pistol shoots well too!
All shooting was done at the distances noted using a standing two-hand hold and Magtech 115 grain 9mm ammo.
The 40, 50, and 75 foot targets all show some rounds pounding the bullseye. Obviously the pistol can shoot better than I can.
The Zev Defender is a dream to shoot. The good news is that all of Zev's parts are available for ala carte purchase by consumers. You can choose the ones you want to upgrade your Glock or you can send them your pistol for a complete overhaul. Regardless of which path you choose, your good 'ole Glock can be made even better.