The Palm Beach sheriff’s office in Florida has reported a series of malfunctions with their Glock service pistols. The official report cites a “Firing Pin Issue” that was causing misfires.
This is terrible news for the Austria-based gun manufacturer. Glock has had a long and trusted relationship with U.S police organizations. The company estimates that as many as 65 percent of U.S. police officers carry Glock service pistols. The company’s motto is “Perfection,” alluding to the streamlined gun design that has as few parts as possible. This simplified design leads to a reliable firearm … most of the time.
Glock acted swiftly to replace the firing pins. Glock flew representatives to Palm Beach to deal with the problem and replace all of the firing pings.
Speer, the company that makes ammunition, is also working with Palm Beach police to address the issue. A Speer representative said, “We have been working directly and swiftly with the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Department and their firearms manufacturer to determine a solution for their concerns about premature firing pin erosion. We are confident that we’ve jointly addressed their concern.”
It is currently unclear what is causing the firing pins to chip and crack, but local gunsmith and police officer Robert Hasmi has a hunch that the problem is either the use of metal-injection-molding for the striker or soft metal. "Remember these are all working metal parts rubbing against each other constantly, that’s how a gun works,” he said. “The slide rubs against the frame, the barrel rubs against the slide when it, when you form its actions. It’s metal rubbing against metal.”
These malfunctions could shake police agencies’ faith in Glock. Law enforcement groups are attracted to Glock because the guns perform well over long periods of time and repeated use. Similar glitches may cause gun manufacturers to look at other options, dealing a hefty financial blow to the Glock manufacturing company.
Until Glock fixes the problem, they may want to amend their motto to, “Nearly Perfection.”