The GLOCK® 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol is a subcompact semi-auto pistol designed specifically for concealed carry use, shooting the .45 ACP pistol cartridge, a round with proven knock down power. The GLOCK 30 SF (Slim Frame) has a frame made out of the same high-strength polymer as other full-sized GLOCK semi-automatic pistols, though the circumference has been reduced in the backstrap area, reducing the distance between the trigger and backstrap. The G30 SF handles better for shooters with normal to smaller sized hands, while still using a double-stack magazine of 45 ACP ammo. The frame has checkering on the front and back straps, providing a non-slip surface, and finger grooves on the front strap and a finger rest on the front of the trigger guard aid in fire control. The Safe-Action trigger system makes shooting in high-stressed situations infallible. The milled steel slide and the barrel are treated with matte black Tenifer finish for extreme resistance to wear and corrosion. The Tenifer treated steel and polymer frame make the pistol impervious to corrosion caused by perspiration and humidity when carried close to the body. The slide cycles on 4 hardened steel guide rails within the frame. A white-dot front sight and a white-bracket rear sight provide rapid acquisition in dim lighting situations. All GLOCK pistols fieldstrip easily without the use of tools. The GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol is a reliable, easy to maintain firearm that’s perfect for everyday carry, or a backup for security personnel. The G30 SF comes with 2 double-stack 10-round magazines, and also functions with G30 and G21 mags.
Slim Frame design
Subcompact for concealed carry
Tremendous firepower in a semi-auto
Safe-Action trigger system
Finger grooved non-slip grip
Impervious to corrosion
White-dot front sight
White-bracket rear sight
Fieldstrips without tools
2 double stacked magazines
Shooting Review: The Glock 30S
The first time I picked up a Glock 30 pistol some years ago I noted that it felt like I was holding a potato. The grip filled my hand and seemed fat as compared to other pistols I’d held in my hands. Not bad, just more robust than most. I must have liked that because it was only a couple months later that I bought one.
Full disclosure: most of the pistols I review are new to me and my review is about first impressions. Not so with this one. I owned an original G30 before the 30S was released and in 2014 I sold my G30 in order to get the G30S model. It’s lighter and slimmer than the original model and it’s a gem of a pistol; a .45 caliber thumper in a compact frame that, to me, just feels right. Except for the fact that it’s chambered in .45 ACP, the Glock 30S is perhaps my all-time favorite pistol.
Why Consider the Glock 30S?
The first and last reason to consider a Glock pistol of any variety is the simplicity and reliability. There is no more simple and reliable a pistol on the planet than a Glock. That aside, the G30S is purpose made for concealed carry—it is the compact version of the Glock 21 duty pistol. So you might consider carrying the G30S for its easy concealability (it’s a bit smaller than a G19). BUY GUNS ONLINE
You might consider the G30S for its .45 chambering, as many folks prefer to have fewer large-caliber rounds rather than more smaller-caliber rounds on their hip. If you have larger hands, you might consider the 30S for its robust grip radius. It’s a double-stack .45 so it has a meaty grip that fills the hand. Despite the large chambering, double stack of large rounds in the mag, and meaty grip, the G30S is a relatively lightweight carry pistol at just over 30 ounces, loaded.
Glock 30S Specs:
Caliber: .45 ACP (auto)
Overall Width: 1.27”
Slide Width: 1”
Trigger: ~5.5 pounds
Sights: Polymer “U” dot configuration, rear adjustable
Weight: 22.95 oz. w/empty magazine
Slide Finish: Black Melonite
Capacity: 10+1 (9-round flush magazine is available)
Price: ~$499 – $550 (often found for more and for less)
Compared to the original G30:
The Glock 30S is a slightly downsized version of the G30. The primary features are the slimmer slide width (1” as opposed to 1.12”) and lower slide-assembly weight (it’s a full 3.5 ounces lighter than the G30 slide assembly) and with the SF frame, the 30S has a slightly shorter trigger reach and overall grip radius as compared to the plain G30. BUY GUNS ONLINE
Shooting the Glock 30S
Comfort & Controllability
The Glock pistol frame is not what most would call comfortable. Rather, it’s serviceable, but it has the saving grace of being very easy to contour with a Dremmel sander for perfect fit and comfort. I believe that every Glock pistol frame needs contouring as well as stippling, so that’s how my 30S is set up. So for me, my Glock 30S fits like a glove. BUY GUNS ONLINE
I expect that some will find the G30S grip to be more comfortable than that of other Glock models, owing to the additional girth. I do and my medium-sized find the girth and trigger reach to be just fine.
The .45 ACP round has a bit of a punch as compared to 9mm and any .45 shot from a compact, polymer frame is going to deliver a bit of pop. That said, the G30S is in no way harsh or uncontrollable. The slightly wider-than-normal grip and the softness of the plastic render the pistol quite tame. I have no trouble whatever shooting an accurate Bill drill as fast as I can pump my finger with this pistol and, provided your grip is proper, this is an easy to control gun. As with comfort concerns, one can contour the frame to allow for better purchase of the support-hand thumb to assist with recoil management.
One thing I’ll point out is that while the 10-round magazines allow for a full grip on the pistol for just about anyone, the 9-round flush magazine leaves a short enough grip that one’s pinky might not have good purchase on the grip. For those with large hands, the pinky might have no purchase at all. The result is not so short as, say, a G26, but the fact that this is a .45 may mean that some folks will desire the full grip provided by the 10-round magazines to help with managing the recoil impulse. GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol
Concealability & Capacity
I’m used to carrying a Glock 19 all day and I find that the G30S conceals even better than the G19. This fact is mostly due to the shorter grip. The slide is about the same width as the G19, but the frame is slightly wider, but only just so and the concealability difference is nonexistent. Overall, this is an easy-to-conceal pistol; and only a tiny bit heavier than a G19. The G30S is actually a bit lighter on your belt if you carry with the flush 9-round magazine. BUY GUNS ONLINE
The typical, extended-looking magazines are 10-rounders, allowing for 11 in your gun. This capacity is not at all bad, especially considering the compact package and length of the grip. No complaints here.
Components and Materials
Well, it’s a Glock. The Glock 30S is built like every other Glock pistol and the frame has Gen 3 styling. The recoil spring is of the captured dual-spring variety. Like most Glock pistols, the G30S comes with polymer sights with the rear U-notch. You’ll likely want to replace these stock sights with some sort of iron sights. BUY GUNS ONLINE
The 30S slide has the bull-nose contouring at the muzzle port, but otherwise is like any other model. The slide-lock lever and takedown tabs are very low-profile, providing the simplest and sleekest external–controls complement in the business.
Despite its simplicity and reliability, customization is a Glock’s best friend. Virtually every after-market manufacturer on earth makes replacement parts and accessories for Glock pistols and if you are of a mind to replace or augment components you’ll have the widest range of options from which to choose. BUY GUNS ONLINE
Note, however, that unlike some Glock pistols the G30S does not have a reversible magazine release. If you’re a lefty, the G30S requires you use the magazine release as is. That’s no great hurdle, but it is a departure from nearly every other contemporary Glock model.
ome Customization Recommendations:
Do use a Dremmel tool to contour the bottom/side of the strong–hand side of the trigger guard junction with the frame. It makes a HUGE difference in comfort.
Do stipple the frame; both the grip and the forward area for your support-hand thumb. There is no pistol in the world (except the Glock RTF texture!) that has a frame texture that allows for enough grip purchase when your hands are wet (from rain, sweat, or blood) and the G30S is no exception. A stippled pistol is highly controllable and comfortable, to a degree not found on any non-stippled pistol. And, no, do not use adhesive grip tape. If you don’t train enough to melt or otherwise scrap it off, the tape’s grippiness is not going to help you much.
Do replace the plastic sights with iron sights of your preference.
Do not replace the slide lock with an extended slide lock. It’s a LOCK and not a release. An extended slide lock will get in the way of your manipulation of the pistol making it prone to not lock open on the last round of a magazine.
Do not put a plug in the bottom of the grip. That opening is there to allow for your thumb’s access to help remove the stuck magazine in the event of a double feed malfunction.
Do not replace your slide stop with a trapezoidal, extended slide stop. These extend too far out from the frame and are both uncomfortable for your hand when shooting and will destroy your holster…and will catch on things when you are manipulating your pistol. As for easy fieldstripping, you don’t need to do that so quickly that an extension matters. GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol
As for Maintenance:
Do replace your recoil spring every 5,000-8,000 rounds – and use a factory replacement (only), not an aftermarket model of any kind.
Do replace your trigger spring and slide-lock spring every 10,000 rounds.
For more maintenance advice, see this article on maintaining your Glock.
Carrying the Glock 30S
I carried the Glock 30S a couple of years ago and it was my daily carry pistol for about a year. I wore the pistol inside the waistband in the 5 o’clock position with a 9-round flush magazine in the gun and 2 10-round mags in an OWB mag pouch on my left side at about 8 o’clock. This rig concealed very well under a simple t-shirt, due in part to the compact nature of the G30S with the flush magazine. Even with the full-size magazine, the G30S has a shorter grip than a G19 (which is my daily carry now) so it is quite concealable no matter your carry location. BUY GUNS ONLINE
Fully loaded, the G30S is less than .4 ounces heavier than a fully-loaded G19, at 30.36 ounces. That’s not terribly light, but for a double-stack .45 pistol, it’s rather remarkable. I find that so long as you have a good carry belt it’s easy to forget you’re wearing it. And that’s not a glib platitude, but a fact based on prolonged experience.
The Glock 30S is an easily concealable, compact .45 with good capacity vs. size and weight. It is as reliable a pistol as was ever made and it’s easy to customize; with a wide variety of after-market components and holsters available.
Some with smaller hands may find the grip to be uncomfortably wide. The polymer sights just beg to be replaced with irons. The price may be a bit high for this pistol. GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol
So for rating the Glock 30S…
It’s a Glock. It’s easy to operate and easy to shoot.
The Glock 30S is likely the most comfortable compact pistol Glock makes, but it still requires some slight modification to be a truly comfortable gun.
It is likely more accurate than anyone shooting it. I’m confident with it out to 50 yards.
There is no more reliable a pistol in the world.
The Glock 30S is among the most customizable pistols on earth.
The Glock 30S is perhaps not for everyone, but everyone should try it. If you like the .45 ACP round and don’t mind its recoil profile, I think the G30S provides the perfect combination of size, weight, capacity, reliability, and concealability.
Gun Review: GLOCK 30S
GLOCK officially introduced the 30S in 2013, but it has existed much longer. The original versions of this pistol were cobbled together by GLOCK enthusiasts who would put the slide from a GLOCK 36 (a single-stack .45 ACP) onto the frame of a GLOCK 30 (a double stack .45 ACP). The result retained the 10+1 capacity of the G30 while shedding weight and slide width. GLOCK eventually recognizing a good thing when it saw it, began producing this mix-and-match pistol as the 30S and had an immediate hit. The 30S provides an outstanding option for those who want to a .45 caliber pistol for concealed carry, and it does so with more capacity and a lower price than a 1911 . . .
Comparing the 30S to other variants of the G30 (like, say, the G30sf), it might seem that the thinner slide is just a gimmick: losing about 3.5 ounces and 1/8 inch off the slide may not seem significant on paper. However, when compared side-by-side with other versions of the GLOCK 30 (which I was able to do when buying) the difference is significant. Sleeker and lighter is the way to go in a gun that will be tucked inside your waistband or hanging off your belt all day.
I’ve had my G30S for the better part of a year now and have carried it frequently. It is is a year-round gun as it is small enough to be a valid option for summer concealed carry, especially with the 9-round magazine. I can carry the pistol and a spare mag all day in reasonable comfort, and it has become my go-to gun for road trips. The holster options are extensive, but I tend to stick to a simple Blackhawk! IWB nylon holster. It just works for me. GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol
Functionally, the 30S is like almost all other GLOCK pistols: it has the same good, but not great 5.5 pound “safe action” trigger, same lack of an external safety, same easy takedown, same stock sights (usually the first part to be replaced), and so on as all GLOCK models. If you love GLOCK pistols, you’ll love it; if you hate them, you’ll hate it. If you’re somewhere in the middle and are looking for a good concealed carry gun in a heavy-hitting caliber, give the 30S a shot.
Out of the box (which is GLOCK’s usual foam-lined, hard-plastic offering) the 30S comes with two 10-round magazines that extend past the bottom of the grip and have a built-in grip extension. The grip itself is that of a Gen3 30SF (short frame), which makes holding a double-stack .45 caliber pistol more manageable for shooters with smaller hands. The 30S also has an accessory rail, so you can stick a light and/or a laser on if you like, though it might stick out past the muzzle. One complaint is that GLOCK’s .45 ACP magazines tend to be stiff and your thumbs may get a workout filling them to capacity, especially at first.
However, GLOCK uniformity has its benefits. In addition to the 10-round magazines that come standard with the various GLOCK 30 models, GLOCK also makes 9-round magazines that sit flush with the bottom of the grip and provide an even smaller profile (these were scarce for a while, but now seem to be readily available). Furthermore, the 13-round magazines made for the full size .45 GLOCK models will fit in the G30 models, and aftermarket grip sleeves can be used to provide a full, comfortable grip (13-round magazines not available in states where the Constitution is seen as expendable).
With these magazines you have the capacity of a full-size GLOCK .45 available for your 30S. Compared to their less-capacious brethren, the 13-round magazines significantly increase the profile of the pistol; however, they are only slightly harder to conceal as backup magazines. Also, with a light/laser combo and a 13-round magazine the 30S becomes a very potent home defense pistol. GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol
Like every GLOCK pistol, the 30S is highly customizable. I recommend putting night sights on if you’re going to use it as a carry gun—if you have to face bad guys in the proverbial dark alley a quick and bright sight picture may save your life. Other than that, you can modify it as much or as little as you like, with a cornucopia of aftermarket parts to choose from. One knock on the 30S is that, unlike other GLOCK 30 models, the slide design has prevented easy conversions to other calibers. Instead of simply buying an aftermarket barrel, you’ll need to buy a whole new slide as well.
My first-ever shot with this pistol was dead center, and while I haven’t always shot that well, that isn’t the gun’s fault. For this review I took it to the range with a box of Herter’s 230 grain brass-cased ammo, slapped an 8-inch target on a cardboard box, and took my first three shots from a bench at about 10 yards. They clustered close to each other (see below).
After those, I stood up and took my shots in a variety of ways from 10-12 yards: slow single shots, rapid strings of 4 or 5 shots, double-taps after bringing the gun up from a low ready, and even a few from the bench again. Most of my shots were on the target, and of those that missed, a majority were within an inch or two of its edge. This was not great shooting, but hopefully it will be good enough if it ever matters, and it is consistent with my skill level. The flyers came in two distinct ways: 1. A few high shots while firing rapidly; and 2. Shots that missed down and left while using the 9-round magazine.
In the latter case, I noted that the magazine wasn’t perfectly flush, and that my little finger, as it tried to hang onto the baseplate, was getting pinched, causing me to pull shots in anticipation. I didn’t have this problem with the stock 10-round magazines nor with the 13-round magazines with the grip sleeve, even though they too leave a small gap between the bottom of the grip and the magazine grip extension. Such problems are dependent on hand size and grip, so I can’t make any predictions as to what, if any, difficulties others may have with fingers getting pinched in the gap, except to note that it’s a possibility. However, the problem is not severe enough that I’ll stop using the 9-round magazine when I need the pistol to have a slightly smaller profile. GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol
The recoil is quite manageable for a compact .45. While heavy, it seems to mostly push back up the arm toward the shoulder, thereby reducing muzzle flip. Although a .45 will always be too much for some shooters, the 30S mitigates the recoil very well for a pistol of this size. The recoil spring assembly has been upgraded to a Gen 4 style, which also helps alleviate the kick of shooting .45 from a light pistol. While I prefer the G30 Gen4 grip, I find the Gen3 grip of the 30S to be adequate, and for those who wish to modify it, there is no shortage of aftermarket options.
As for reliability, this gun goes bang every time I pull the trigger. I can’t recall a single failure out of the hundreds of rounds I’ve put through it. Whether it’s Herter’s aluminum-cased nylon-jacketed rounds or Blazer brass or Federal Hydrashocks or Hornady critical defense, it eats them all. There might be something out there that won’t cycle in this gun, but I haven’t found it yet.
Overall, this is an excellent pistol that I highly recommend to anyone who wants a compact .45 as their carry piece. With all due respect to the venerable, beautiful, and often very expensive 1911 design, guns like the GLOCK 30S are guns for the people. The 30S provides reliable firepower in a compact, accurate and affordable package that conceals easily and shoots well. GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol
Model: GLOCK 30S
Caliber: .45 Auto
Magazine capacity: 10 (stock), 9 and 13 available
Materials: Stainless steel slide and barrel, polymer frame
Weight empty: 22.95 ounces
Barrel Length: 3.77″
Overall length: 6.96″
Sights: Plastic, Dot in a U
Action: Striker Fired
RATINGS (out of five stars):
Style * * *
It’s a GLOCK. Its style is found in looking exactly like what it is: a good, reliable pistol.
Accuracy * * * * 1/2
It shoots better than I do. It may not have the mechanical accuracy of a custom 1911, but it’s all you’ll need in a $600 carry pistol.
Carry * * * * *
This is about as comfortable as it gets to carry 10+1 in .45, and there are a lot of holster options available.
Ergonomics * * * *
The grip is comfortable (even if I prefer a Gen4 grip) and the recoil is very manageable for such a lightweight .45. Shooters may find that some magazine configurations suit them better than others. It would have been nice had GLOCK included the Gen4 magazine catch, and the magazine springs are annoyingly stiff as well. GLOCK 30 SF Semi-Auto Pistol
Reliability * * * * *
I don’t think I’ve had a failure yet from this gun. There is no break in period; it works right out of the box.
Customize This * * * * ½
There is a thriving market for GLOCK aftermarket pistol accessories and modifications. I’m deducting a half star for the lack of caliber conversion barrels. BUY GUNS ONLINE
OVERALL * * * * 1/2
This is an outstanding self-defense pistol. It’s powerful, accurate, reliable, customizable and affordable. Only a few quibbles keep it from a full 5 stars.