I am a huge fan of glocks. I learned to shoot on a Glock, so the grip angle is the one I am most familiar with. I have my bias. Having said that, I consider the Glock G23 in .40 S&W to be one of the best possible options for Concealed Carry for anyone planning on carrying on their belt line.
The G23 is the compact version of the Glock G22. Glock models are numbered in the order they came out, starting at 17, so you can see this came right on the hills of it’s larger brother, or to be more precise was released at the same time. It is less than an inch difference in length and height, with the same width. But that difference is what makes the G23 just right for concealment. The G23 and the G19 are the same dimensions, the G19 being the same gun in 9mm. The G27 is even smaller, but my experience is that it has sacrificed comfort and controllability to get to that point. The G23 has plenty of room to rest all fingers on the grip and enough sight radius to be accurate at range. It is comfortable, as long as your hands are large enough to find glocks comfortable.
The G23 holds 13+1 rounds of .40 S&W ammunition. Larger than a 9mm, able to hold more rounds in a slimmer package than a .45, with less recoil than a 10mm, the .40 is the ultimate compromise round. It sits squarely in the middle of the “acceptable” self defense rounds and very few people would consider it a bad choice. The internet is rampant with opinions on which round is the best, and my personal opinion on the matter is the subject of a different article. Recoil with this round from the G23 is snappy but manageable for all but the most recoil sensitive shooters. The beefy slide and the polymer frame each do their part to reduce the recoil and muzzle flip allowing faster second shot aiming.
Glocks in general are famous for being rugged work horses (search for Glock Torture Test). Although slow to gain acceptance, only die hard all metal fans will argue against them anymore. They have become so commonly adopted that they are instantly recognizable by even people who have never handled a firearm in their life. A gun does not get to this point by failing to go boom when the trigger is pulled.
Because Glocks are so common, there is no shortage of accessories available. If an accessory is made, it’s probably available for a glock, this isn’t true for some of the other firearms I will be reviewing.
A holster is obviously the most important accessory if you plan to use this firearm for concealed carry. As I mentioned in the opening, I consider the G23 to be ideal for belt carry. Every other method I have tried has not given convenient results. Forget ankle carry, or even “deep concealment” such as Thunderwear or SmartCarry, the G23 is just to bulky. My absolute favorite holster series for a gun of this size is the Comp-Tac line. But there are plenty of good choices available.
I like a little more grip than what came standard in the Generation 3 series of glocks. The G23 pictured has precut sandpaper grip panels applied. These come in both “skateboard tape” and rubberized. I prefer the “skateboard tape” variant. If you use these grips, you will want to make sure there is some cloth between your side and the grip, they are made of sandpaper.
An extended slide release is another piece it’s difficult to go wrong with. They are easy to self install, and make dropping the slide much easier.