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Glock 36: Big .45 Auto Power from a ‘Pocket Cannon’

Glock 36
Image: Creative Commons.

What to make of the Glock 36? 

The first thing that jumps out at you about the Glock 36 is its size.

This is a subcompact we are talking about here – a “baby” Glock that has a bite.

If you are looking for a pistol with a large magazine and many rounds, look elsewhere. But if you need a sidearm that is easy to conceal for self-defense, you may want to examine the Glock 36 closer. Glock was attempting to get a subcompact into the hands of any user and the manufacturer wanted the best ergonomics it could create.

Glock 36: Stubby Little Buddy With Power

The main idea was to reduce the width and maintain a slim frame. The Glock 36 has less width on the slide. The distance from the trigger to the grip is small – only 2.95 inches. The Glock 36 has a six-round single stack magazine in .45 auto plus one in the chamber. Glock believes this configuration is simple to use for someone who is more likely to value the G36 for self-protection in a model that can be concealed well. So, for comparison purposes, this is a slim version of the Glock 30.

It Has the Subcompact Dimensions You’d Expect

The barrel length is only 3.78 inches and without the magazine it weighs just under 20 ounces. Overall length is seven inches. When you load it the weight goes up to around 27 ounces – still lightweight like a subcompact should be. The sights are Polymer U-notch.

Don’t Worry About Stopping an Intruder

If you are looking for stopping power in a subcompact, that .45 round will do the job. It is surprising that such a small pistol can pack that much punch. A newcomer to pistols will not need a substantial amount of training on the Glock 36 other than dealing with the recoil from the .45 round. The sidearm is straightforward to use.

No Need for a Revolver

It is also a comfortable carry without too much rough texture on the grip. It’s light enough to not interfere in the type of clothing you are wearing or dig into your side or hip. It may be better than carrying a revolver such as the J-frame Smith & Wesson snub-nose. Beginners can skip firing a revolver and go right to the Glock 36 for self-defense or to keep by the bedstand for home defense.

One Reviewer Gives It Mixed Marks

There has been a tinge of criticism about the Glock 36 from some reviewers. Josh Wayner with the Truth About Guns has a few issues. Wayner said he didn’t like the grip which, while narrower, is still too thick from front to back, in his opinion. This leads to it moving in your hand under recoil, he said.  The lack of aggressive grip texture on the sides makes controlling it more difficult. Wayner also said the trigger pull is “mushy.”

Still Reliable If Not As Accurate As Expected

During testing, Wayner had problems with accuracy on the range but not the pistol’s reliability, which he gave high marks. But he didn’t enjoy himself on the range with the G36 as much as other Glocks that he trains with, even though he admits that Glock was simply trying to make the G36 into a go-to self-defense mini-cannon and the designers succeeded at that.

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Expert Biography: Serving as 1945’s Defense and National Security Editor, Dr. Brent M. Eastwood is the author of Humans, Machines, and Data: Future Trends in Warfare. He is an Emerging Threats expert and former U.S. Army Infantry officer. You can follow him on Twitter @BMEastwood. He holds a Ph.D. in Political Science and Foreign Policy/ International Relations.

Written By

Now serving as 1945s New Defense and National Security Editor, Brent M. Eastwood, PhD, is the author of Humans, Machines, and Data: Future Trends in Warfare. He is an Emerging Threats expert and former U.S. Army Infantry officer.