Replica Review: Tokyo Marui Glock 19 Gen 3

There will one day be an ATRG review of a replica not made by the Japanese, A pistol not made of plastic and by a company who cares about the market outside of its own funny little island… But today, Today is not that day.

The Glock 19 has proven to be an incredibly popular firearm since it’s introduction, it’s early adoption as the duty carry sidearm of choice for the NYPD followed by many other law enforcement agencies was due to a combination of factors…

Firstly and probably most importantly, Glocks are simple beasts, Easy to train with and ultimately easier to become proficient with. If there’s less work involved in learning how to use something you can focus on how to become good with it. It’s also a light and compact weapon, In the 80’s era of the “Wonder Nine” this pistol retained the same capacity as the heavier and more complex Beretta 92, CZ75 and Sig P22X pistols but in a much lighter and more compact package. It also lends itself well to undercover and every day carry work due to both its size and the relative safety of its Glock Action.

Finally, it’s cheap… Coming in at around half the cost of a Sig P226 it’s easy to guess why the Glock has one by one taken over so many other sidearms in use. Last year it was the 4th best selling handgun in the US and Glock’s most popular in its range… If it wasn’t for cheaper, smaller pistols by the likes of Ruger, Smith & Wesson and Sig I’d suggest that it would have been the number one seller. Certainly with advocates like Garand Thumb and Lucas Botkin of T-Rex Arms its popularity amongst those who follow them will be assured.

GT-Red-dot-Glock.png

So, Glock 19 Users… Who are we going to be able to emulate aside Papa Thumb? Well if we lump Law Enforcement worldwide together and concentrate on purely military it’s a rich bag from the Azerbaijani Special Forces (Yep, Apparently that’s a thing) and the Iraqi Military (The largest Glock contract to date was supplying the Iraqi Army with Glock 19 pistols) through to UKSF (Both SAS and SBS have been seen to use Glock 19s) and US Special Forces units stretching from Navy SEALs and DEVGRU to MARSOC… All have made the transition across to the 19 for the reasons above.

It’s also mistaken for the Glock 17 so often in Film and TV that very often the 17 and 19 are interchangeable scene by scene, The 17 generally takes the credit whilst 19 sits back quietly, Just like the quiet professionals that use it. SEAL Team have swapped between the two, notably when the pistols are suppressed they tend to use the 17 (although this might be legitimate… who knows!)

So, A bit of background on what’s on offer currently and how it’s developed… If memory serves me correctly, the Marui Glock 17 in function is effectively the Glock 26 (Which was the first GBB Glock produced by Marui), the others in the range include the Glock 26 Advance, Glock 18c (a beast on full auto), The Glock 22 and the John Wick‘esque Glock 34… Itself a modernised version of the Glock 17L (I owned the Marui spring powered 17L pistol around 20 years ago!). It’s no wonder that the Tokyo Marui offering has been so hotly anticipated, With impression builders wanting a 19 that works year round with Marui’s dependable performance. So without further waffling, let’s have a look at what you get!

It would have been so easy for Marui to simply place the Glock 17 internals inside a slightly reduced frame and say “there you go”… However, Following on from their recent successes with other pistol lines they have thankfully decided that progress is as important as mere aesthetics. Over the last couple of years there has been a distinct improvement in the performance and resilience of Marui pistols… When you look back at the older designs such as the M92F Military Model Which although skirmishable pistols, Lacked things you’d take for granted on their more modern M9 models such as the M9A1 and M9 Military Model feature an adjustable hop and a functional de-cocker.

With Glocks there isn’t a lot of functionality that can be added… Only minor little details that can be improved upon and in terms of performance, Taking the lessons learned with the M&P9, Beretta PX4, HK45 and more recently the USP (Full size) Marui have tweaked the internals to cater for a larger 15mm bore cylinder, this central change alters the whole character of the pistol… In effect it should allow for a crisper shooting experience and a snappier feel on the trigger.

On opening the box you get the usual Marui layout… A pistol and single magazine lay within a cardboard and polystyrene foam box with a stylish and understated design. You get a few accessories to assist in the safe carriage and use of your toy;

  • A pair of magazine inserts to allow dry firing.
  • A red barrel plug.
  • A small bag of Marui ammo (an exception to the rule of not using ammo that comes with a replica, although I’ve rarely even opened these bags).
  • A cleaning/un-jamming rod.
  • A user manual and warranty card sit inside the lid.
  • Marui have always been good with the literature supplied with their replicas… They have a somewhat unfair reputation when it comes to their non-domestic market, People often saying that they don’t care about anything outside of Japan. However when you look at the literature, many of the important parts are either easy to understand pictures or, as is the Japanese way… Semi-anglicised with numbers and the occasional word thrown in amongst the Japanese script.

    The pistol itself isn’t heavy… It’s what you’d expect from a compact pistol made from polymers. The magazine does add a little weight overall and certainly helps give it a reasonable heft, Although nothing like the KSC/KWA Glock 19 I owned a few years ago…

    The look and feel is an improvement on the 17 that many will be used to, It’s more akin to the USP in how it holds the light and time will probably show that the polymer used will retain its look a lot better than the shiny Marui pistols we all know and resent.

    The markings, I’m not a stickler for Trademarks… If it looks good from 6 feet away I’m happy enough… The Marui markings are exactly what you’d expect. On one side you have the Glock 19 trades displaying Make, Model, Calibre… On the other it’s a little less formal, A combination of Real and Airsoft markings… It’s never really bothered me that Marui do this… It’s obviously important for a brand to have recognition and I don’t think it detracts from the overall look.

    Some of you won’t agree, I can understand that… But the stitch counters should appreciate that the words “Tokyo Marui” don’t make this any less a toy than if they were absent.

    The controls are taken directly from the real 19, Anyone whose had time with any Airsoft or real Glock will find this simple to use. A few minor improvements to the Aesthetics have been made, the extractor is now a separate metal part much alike the other recent Marui additions and the moulding is (dare I say it) probably as good as a real Glock.

    The Glock 19 trigger is a slightly redesigned unit from that found on the 17, the biggest noticeable difference is that the trigger itself is textured with ridges on either side to allow in a more tactile feel and less chance of your finger slipping whilst pulling the trigger. The pull feels distinctively harder than the 17, Although it could be a combination of this being brand new and the 17 I’m comparing it against being a long way past it’s prime. It’s not an uncomfortable pull and certainly an improvement on the characterless 17, but it’s certainly not its best asset… However real Glocks are notoriously basic on the trigger front so this in itself isn’t something I can mark it down much for.

    The slide release is virtually identical to that found on the 17… I’m not feeling like taking it apart as I don’t enjoy reassembling Glock trigger/hammer units (Especially on a pistol that I’ve just bought) but I can’t ascertain any differences from what I can see.

    The contact area for the slide release to engage with has however been redeveloped and increased in area, There is now a significant amount of metal on metal, ensuring that the slide catch doesn’t eat through the plastic slide as was the case in my Sig P226 a while back. The 17 was reinforced somewhat but not to the same level.

    The last major control on the pistol is the Magazine release catch, This is of a similar aesthetic to the 17, Both being modelled in Glocks 3rd Generation of handguns. There are a couple of key differences though, Firstly… It’s noticeably more textured, Almost sharp on the edges.

    In addition to this, The 19’s magazine release is a fair amount stiffer, In such a way that I’d not be concerned about loosing magazines even in a soft fabric or leather holster. The inside is also drastically different, a metal frame now provides the magazine release with undeniable strength… No chance of this wearing out!

    There is a hidden safety, The same as Marui have placed on their other Glocks. It’s a transit safety that isn’t on the real Firearm, Located on the frame serial plate under the rail, clicking it back will render the trigger immovable, forward makes the pistol function again.

    The disassembly isn’t quite as smooth as previous Glocks, It works the same way but a reasonable amount of force is needed to nudge that slide forward. Don’t panic if your needing to strip it, But at the same time don’t be “that guy” and wreck a pretty solid pistol by beating it to death!

    The sights are the basic cup and dot Glock design. Taking up a slightly smaller profile than the 17 but being compatible should you wish, with aftermarket tritium or high post sights. I personally prefer tritium sights so once finances allow it’ll be one of the first things on my shopping list.

    The rail appears to be slightly more in line with a real spec rail, My genuine Surefire X300 Ultra fitting perfectly and adding a little weight to the whole package.

    Onto compatibility with its most closely related replica… The Tokyo Marui Glock 17, Please forgive the horrendous 17 shaped abomination… I’m doing a favour for a friend, I offered to burn it and do society a favour but he wants it fixed.

    Internally there’s not much that’s compatible in the upper, As with the M1911A1 and M45A1 the whole slide has been redeveloped internally… Strengthened significantly on the front section and with a captive recoil spring assembly that fits snug under the new outer barrel/hop design.

    The hop has changed over from the older Marui design. The adjustment is now possible without disassembly via the breech/ejection port. A handy addition but not really necessary as the Marui hops tend to stay put once adjusted. It does mean however that current Marui compatible outer barrels won’t fit.

    Field stripping the Glock has become a little tougher than before, A bit of resistance is now present when pushing the slide forward… I’m unsure what is catching but a firm tap does help the slide come free. From there it’s as simple as removing the recoil spring assembly and then the outer barrel assembly. This is as far as you should need to strip your Glock unless installing aftermarket internals.

    Here you can properly see the redeveloped spring assembly, retained front and rear with a dampening block along the rear portion.

    It’s been reported that the sights are Glock 17/18 compatible which should allow the installation of tritium or red dot sights, My replica Trijicon RMR fits on a proprietary Glock mount designed for the Marui Glock 17 that takes the place of the rear sight.

    As for mag wells fitting the 19, Some will and others won’t. Nova make a TTI style mag well that fits with a little effort, The Zev style made by 5KU apparently does not.

    The hammer/striker mechanism looks to have been tweaked… there is now more reinforcement throughout but with the overall design being the same in operation. Spring wise for the trigger and hammer it appears that these would be cross compatible but being Marui they don’t need replacing unless using an aftermarket slide.

    As for slides, There’s certainly scope for development… If a good copy of Unity Tactical’s Atom slide appears or something with a lower RMR mounting option I’ll certainly be making a “Roland Special” type build.

    The other main area of compatibility is the one which most people care about… Magazines. This will work with any magazine that is designed for the Marui Glock 17, that means your able to choose from the 25 and 50 round mags if you should desire more than the 19’s capacity of 21.

    Speaking of magazines, the supplied magazine has been overhauled as per Marui‘s current trend. A dual pinned bottom plate now replaces the longitudinal bolt that secures the 17’s bottom.

    This is an area of contention… it’s a primary cause of leaking within the MP7 and M&P9 magazines… However the M45A1 and USP which share this design have yet to spring a leak so maybe they’ve realised that there was a fault and fixed it (highly likely knowing Marui), One things for sure is that the bolt design certainly decreases gas capacity, It also results in a spectacular failure if the thread strips… Something that happened to the dipped abomination I’m trying to save (Rest in peace balls).

    So how does it shoot?… I’m not going to sugar coat it and say it’s the best pistol on the market, That’s simply not the case… It’s certainly better than Marui’s other Glocks by a clear margin and in my opinion its the best airsoft replica of a Glock full stop.

    But… It doesn’t quite match the bark and bite of the USP or HK45, Arguably the two best performers Marui currently offer outside of the Hi-Cappa range.

    That’s not to say it’s disappointing… It’s certainly a great sidearm, I’ve already recommended it to a friend who is considering this amongst a few other TM pistols and I’d certainly not do that if i thought it wouldn’t live up to his expectations.

    It’s a fun pistol to shoot, Efficient and consistent… The low recoil combined with a relatively short trigger reset allows for rapid and accurate shots. The balance is rather rear-biased but with a weapon-light on the front and a high, tight grip it’s reasonably nice to hold for most people, however It’s a small framed pistol… If I didn’t have a +2 base-plate on the magazine I’d probably struggle to hold it comfortably as I’ve got relatively large hands.

    It’s worth pointing out that I’m not a Glock fan, I’d much rather shoot a 1911 or Beretta or virtually anything that aesthetically has a little bit more going for it… However I appreciate that the Glock design hasn’t become popular because of its looks, Rather in spite of it.

    MARSOC, DEVGRU, SAS, SBS… They don’t choose something for how it looks, The Sig, Hi-Power and M45A1 being ditched in favour of a pistol that shoots just as well, Costs less, Weighs less, Holds more rounds and is a hell of a lot easier to train on.

    I’m happy enough to add it to my collection purely because a Glock is almost mandatory when looking at a pistol collection… Having sold on my 17 a few weeks ago I was eager to have something to replace it, And what better than the sidearm used by the aforementioned SF units that many of us emulate in our load-outs.

    So, final thoughts… Should you buy one? Well if your specifically looking for a skirmishable Gen 3 Glock 19 then the answer is undoubtedly yes! It shoots as well as most other Marui pistols out the box bar one or two, the addition of a red dot doesn’t appear to slow it down much and it looks great, I was able to dump a full magazine in relatively cold weather with an overly heavy RMR attached without it venting or becoming sluggish.

    Overall it’s a worthy addition to the stable, The only thing that’s soured my experience is that through my eagerness to be one of the first to get ahold of this new design I placed an order directly from Japan through Impulse101, I’m not going to hold them accountable for the delay but due to a typhoon in late September the Japanese end of the delivery process was a little slower than usual…

    I ended up getting my Glock exactly 2 weeks after the initial dispatch. Doesn’t sound like long but when you want bragging rights it’s a long, long time! Also paying £146 in total and receiving it on the same day as the customers from UK shops did has certainly made me question whether I’ll be doing the same with future releases… It’s kinda like going to a midnight game release only to realise you have work in the morning and can’t play it for another 16 hours anyway…

    At time of release there’s only a handful that have been released in the UK… Eagle 6 and Wolf Armouries being the two initial shops to have then in stock, CAMOraids (odd name) and Dave’s Custom Airsoft (pretty straight forward name) have also indicated that they will be ordering in these pistols as soon as stock allows. I’d imagine the regulars like Zero One and Fire Support will follow suit if they haven’t already and newcomers Typhoon Airsoft certainly appear to be Marui fans as well. Just remember, Enter the code ATRG19 at the check out… You won’t get anything off but it will make the guy fulfilling your order scratch his head. 😂  I look forward to seeing more of these out there in the wild, I’m sure they’ll be a big hit.

    8 thoughts on “Replica Review: Tokyo Marui Glock 19 Gen 3

    Add yours

    1. Great stuff. To my horror I had my WE G19 exit it’s CP Gun Clip in an unplanned way yesterday but fortunately found shortly afterwards…

      … I now have it being prepared for a lanyard hole to be drilled on the back grip. Cannot be having those arsehole-clenching shenanigans again.

      I assume this model has a lanyard hole?!

      Like

    Leave a Reply

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

    WordPress.com Logo

    You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

    Google photo

    You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

    Connecting to %s

    Blog at WordPress.com.

    Up ↑

    %d bloggers like this: