Glock 23 vs 27 - Here's Everything You Need to Consider

Glock 23 vs 27: Here’s Everything You Need to Consider

For a survivalist, a handgun serves various purposes ranging from self-defense to home security. In the pool of handguns, Glocks are quite popular among the preppers because of their simple design, fire mechanism, and easy-to-use features. Two main firearms from the Glock family are Glock 23 and Glock 27.

Belonging from the reputed family of Glock, both Glock 23 and Glock 27 have certain similar specialties, which include their safety system and reliability. They both also have a polymer grip and a .40 S&W caliber. However, some key differences that can affect the choice of preppers are as follows –

Glock 23:

  • Compact Mid Size gun
  • Magazine can hold 13+1 bullet rounds
  • Long range of approximate 50 metres
  • Better recoil absorption and less muzzle flip

Glock 27:

  • Subcompact, small size gun
  • Lighter weight with deep concealability.
  • Magazine can hold 9+1 Rounds
  • Small length of barrel and grip.
  • Medium range of approximate 30-35 metres
glock 23
(Glock 23)

Specifications Table

Glock 23 Glock 27
Caliber .40 Smith & Wesson .40 Smith & Wesson
Action Semi-automatic Semi-automatic
Capacity 13+1 9+1
Barrel Length 4.02 inches 3.43 inches
Frame Black Polymer Polymer
Grip Polymer Polymer
Sights Fixed Fixed
Length 7.36 inches 6.50 inches
Height (including magazine) 5.04 inches 4.17 inches
Width 1.26 inches 1.26 inches
Weight (w/o magazine) 21.16 oz. 19.40 oz.
Weight (with loaded magazine) 31.22 oz. 26.46 oz.
Trigger Pull 28 N 28 N
Trigger Distance 2.80 inches 2.83 inches
Line of Sight (Polymer)
6.02 inches 5.39 inches
Line of Sight (Steel) 5.98 inches 5.35 inches

Frame, Weight, Grip, and Round Capacity

glock 27
(Glock 27)

The frame is a metal housing to which all the parts of the gun are connected or contained within it. The frame holds special importance as the gun’s length, weight, and capacity to absorb recoil are dependent on it. Since both Glock 23 and 27 belong to the reputed Glock’s group, they follow the “Signature” boxy shape with a high-strength polymer frame that’s resistant to shock, liquid, and corrosion.

Glock 23 is a mid-sized, compact gun with an approximate length of 7.36 inches. It weighs slightly heavy – around 31.22 oz with loaded magazines, and fires the potent .40 S&W cartridge. The noteworthy point is its high-capacity magazine which can carry 13+1 rounds.

Glock 27 is a subcompact gun with a small length of 6.50 inches that facilitates deep concealability and easy portability without being detected in a coat or the Pant’s pocket. Due to its small size, it is called “baby Glock”. It weighs around 26.46 oz with a loaded magazine and fires the same .40 S&W cartridge. Due to its small length, Its Magazine can hold 9+1 rounds.

The Glock 23 offers a long grip with a backstrap design that enables the user to customize the grip for a better feel or control. Its long grip and weight softens the recoil and reduces the muzzle flip that facilitates follow-up shots.

On the other hand, Glock 27 has a comparatively small grip. So, although it helps in concealment, a higher recoil is expected. However, in the recent models, a dual recoil spring is provided to lessen the impact of recoil.

Barrel Length

The barrel of a gun determines its range, accuracy, and final weight. Also, it affects concealability, which might be of primary importance in a particular situation. Now both long and short barrels have their pros and cons. While a long barrel means more power and accuracy, one with a shorter barrel is lighter and easier to conceal.

The barrel length of Glock 23 is slightly longer than that of Glock 27. 23’s length is 4.02 inches, and on the other hand, 27’s is 3.42 inches.

Other Specs

For acquiring targets quickly, Glock 23 has adjustment sights that include a ramped front sight and a notched rear sight. Whereas Glock 27 allows for factory Glock night sights.

sight comparison pistols
(Glock 23 Sight)                                                                                                                (Glock 27 Sight)

In terms of pricing, there isn’t such a huge difference. For 23, the prices for new and old are $643.93 and $574.45, respectively, and for 27, they are $603.98 and $558.82, respectively.

Safety Lock

Both the Glocks are equipped with a strong “safe action” system, which includes 3 mechanical safeties which are passive, automatic, and independent.  These safeties disengage automatically as soon as the shooter presses the trigger. Being independent in nature, one can bypass one safety without affecting the other two. These 3 safety elements play a substantial role in protecting the prepper against all safety hazards.

Trigger safety is the first element of the safety system. It is a small lever incorporated into the trigger that blocks its rearward movement. The user needs to depress both the liver and the trigger at the same time to fire the pistol.

The second safety is the firing-pin safety. It is a device that halts the forward movement of the firing pin in the ready-to-fire condition.  If one releases the trigger without firing, this safety automatically re-engages due to its mechanically designed spring structure.

The final safety is the trigger bar safety which is based on the safety ramp mechanism. This safety uses the cruciform-shaped rear part of the trigger bar. The firing pin is prevented from sliding forward by this safeguard. When the trigger is pulled, the trigger bar lowers and allows for the release of the firing pin. All safeties automatically re-engage after firing.

Further, the Glocks (of both kinds) produced after 2001 have an internal lock system that can be activated through a small keyhole near the magazine frame. After activation of the lock, the trigger can’t be pulled, which ensures protection in case the children accidentally put their hands on the gun.


disassembled glock pistol

In terms of performance, both the Glocks give cut-throat competition to each other.

The Glock 23 has an effective range of 50 meters with an interchangeable magazine release catch, which the user can move to whichever side as per his/her comfort. Now, although Glock 27 covers a distance of approximately 30-35 meters, its grip includes an ergonomic hold as well as an integrated trigger guard to facilitate its user in aiming the target.

The main difference between the Glocks lies in their round holding and recoil absorption capacity. 23’s magazine holds a typical 13 rounds, which enable the user to use it for long durations. Further, due to a large grip and a long barrel, it absorbs recoil better and gives the user an extra second for sight acquisition.

However, the Glock 27 is equipped with a 9 round magazine and is not suggested for long-duration use. Further, due to comparatively low absorption of recoil, the user finds it difficult to use it on continuous successions.

Which to pick?

pistols display variety

The choice largely depends on the purpose of the gun and the person’s preference. While Glock 23 has more range and accuracy, Glock 27 is better in concealment. Also, for everyday carry, 27 is a good choice as it is short and lightweight, but for those frequently indulged in shooting, 23 is better since it serves more rounds (hence fewer reloads) along with better recoil absorption. So, in a nutshell, the need determines the choice.

Chris Green

Chris has always had an adventurous soul, and his love for the outdoors eventually led him to become a professional life skills advisor. He explains a multitude of different topics ranging from disaster preparedness and wilderness survival to self-sufficiency.

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