I should just start this off by saying – I’m a GLOCK guy. I love GLOCKs. So this review will be coming from that standpoint. If your coming from a 1911 standpoint or you just want to read a great review, MaxVenom did a review HERE.
When I first thought about getting a handgun, everyone I talked to told me to get a GLOCK. I didn’t listen and I bought an FN pistol because I wanted (thought I needed) a physical safety and in my inexperience I thought the GLOCK didn’t fit my hand.
Well the trigger on the FN was not the best, I never used the safety I thought I needed, and it was a double-action/single-action pistol that was hard to train to. It had a long trigger pull for the first shot (double-action) and then a nice short trigger pull onwards (single-action). It was a good gun and it did a good job of showing me the way.
I’m a bit of a nut when it comes to firearms safety. And once the light bulb went off in my head that my two main safeties are my mind and my trigger finger, it seemed like the mechanics of pistol safety’s just got in the way. This is what led me to GLOCK. There a number of reasons to buy a GLOCK but for me it comes down to reliability, ease of maintenance, and dare I say, the trigger reset. Jerking the Trigger has a great write up on “why GLOCK” – HERE.
Anyways, reliability; the GLOCK is the AK of handguns- rock solid. Ease of maintenance; maintenance on a GLOCK is a joke, you can field strip and clean a GLOCK in about 5 min. And last, there is the trigger reset. Not the trigger pull itself, or its smoothness, because these not much there, a GLOCK trigger is grainy and rough. But the trigger reset is the same every time and has a fast positive reset.
Early on, I tried to get rid of some of that graininess in my GLOCK trigger and did the inevitable $0.25 trigger job. You are essentially polishing up the trigger mechanism to smooth things out. For future reference you can also do this by putting a couple thousand rounds downrange. The trigger on my GLOCK 19 smoothed out both from the trigger job, which is a nice way to learn all the components of you handgun, and a LOT of shooting. A great DVD to learn more about the trigger job and the GLOCK itself is AGI Making GLOCKs Rock.
So I own a few GLOCKs and I like the trigger on all of them because they are all the same. You pick up a GLOCK and you know what you are getting. I was never one of the guys that wanted to install a new trigger.
How does all this get us to the Haley Strategic Skimmer Trigger? Well I have been a fan of Magpul for a while and thought it was interesting when Haley and Costa left to go start their own gigs. Because of that I subscribed to Haley’s blog and one day a video popped up of Haley explaining the skimmer (UPDATE – sorry, Haley pulled the video a little while back for reasons I don’t know).
First off, he is saying it’s a carry trigger. That’s kind of huge as most (not all) replacement triggers are for competition or trying to lighten the trigger pull. This trigger was designed from the start to be a carry trigger. I use my GLOCKS as tools and carry them often so this made me think a bit.
GLOCK Triggers and Jeff Wilson have a reputation of putting out quality stuff and I’m always down with increase hit probability and reduce operator error. So I decided to poke around and try to find some reviews. Two things I found crawling the interwebs: 1) people who have tried it, love it and a lot who haven’t, hate it, for a multitude of reasons, 2) there weren’t that many in-depth reviews out there.
I wondered if we should do a review. At the time GLOCK Triggers website said they didn’t have a Gen 4 model out yet (Coming soon in Gen 4 ). If I was going to do it, I wanted to install the trigger on my GLOCK 19 Gen 4 as I use it for carry and shoot more with my 19 than any other GLOCK I own. Being inquisitive, I decided to email GLOCK Triggers and see what was up with the Gen 4 version.
I emailed (at 7pm EST on a Friday night) Jeff at Glocktriggers.com and asked if they made a Gen 4 version. Jeff immediately got back to me and said “There is a Gen4 Skimmer. The Gen 4 uses different parts than the Gen 3. I am sold out at the moment.” We traded emails back and forth and let him know that when he gets them back in stock to let me know because I would probably pick one up. Jeff emailed later on that night to tell me he checked his inventory and had two in stock if I wanted to pick one up. This was on a Friday night by the way = awesome customer services.
I went ahead and ordered it late that night and it was in my hands by Tuesday. The trigger comes pre-assembled in a small tube with links to Glocktriggers.com for instructions in video format and also by PDF if you want to print them out and go step by step. Install is a breeze and if you have never gone that deep into your GLOCK’s internals it’s a great learning experience.
The Skimmer comes with the trigger already configured with a zip tie holding it together for shipping. The trigger is made up of all GLCOK parts – the Trigger with trigger bar, Trigger mechanism with ejector, Trigger spring, and the minus Connector. The kit also comes with the following additional parts polished for maximum smoothness:
- Firing pin safety
- Firing pin safety spring
- Firing pin safety spring cups
- Firing pin spring
If the price seems a little steep, not only are you getting the Skimmer but the kit contains a refresh of most of the GLOCKs internal parts. For those of you that have an older Glock with thousands & thousands of rounds downrange it may be time to start swapping out some of those older parts and replace them with new ones. The Skimmer is one option for doing this.
Install takes about 20 min and is a simple drop-in unit except for the parts in the slide. The slide will need to be completely stripped down to all it component parts. There are a lot of great videos on YouTube showing this step by step. One of my favorites is How To Detail Strip A Glock Pistol (Glock disassembly) – the slide disassembly starts at 5min 30sec.
Once you get your pistol back together, do some function checks and make sure everything is working properly. The first thing you will notice is there is no longer any pre-travel to the trigger. The trigger is now at the reset wall. Pull the trigger and let it reset and you are back where you started.
Here is a video of the Standard GLOCK trigger:
And here is a video of the Skimmer Trigger – notice that there is no slack to take up in the trigger:
I purchased this Kit back in May and I was planning on doing the review after about 1k rounds. I generally shoot 1k in about a month. As you can tell from reading this in early December there was some additional shooting to say the least. At this point we have probably put 5 to 6 thousand rounds through this trigger. We also did some crazy testing on the trigger & drop safety to verify it’s safe.
So what’s the deal? It’s a pretty awesome trigger! When I started the testing I went through this phase of weird shooting where I was missing the reset. I can’t tell why this happened other than you need to get used to the trigger. It’s a GLOCK trigger without the slack but the reset is crisper so you need to put rounds downrange to get used to it. Going back to the stock trigger or the trigger on my 17 is no issue but it took a little getting used to. I would miss resets misjudging where the reset would take place. When that happens you have to let the trigger out all the way again. It made me shake my head a few time but you quickly get the feel of it.
I guess you have to start with what on a GLOCK trigger is good. The nice click and tactile reset along with the consistent trigger pull is why I love the trigger. The slack you have to take up before the real trigger pull is the part that sucks. The Skimmer essentially eliminates this. There is no slack, it’s kind of awesome! Why do I say kind of, because I have been shooting GLOCKs for years and train to the reset. So really the only shot you notice the slack on is the first one. But that first shot is now very nice, and as I said before it’s very crisp.
I have a laser light combo on my 19 for my wife. She shoots enough to be proficient but the laser helps her with natural point of aim and training. I like the laser because when I dry fire, I can see if I’m jerking the trigger. The skimmer has the same effect, it makes you a better shooter because you know where the stop is and your not letting the trigger ride your trigger finger forward after the shot, it just stops, making it easier to train to the reset.
I originally thought I would purchase the Skimmer and sell it after the review if I didn’t like it. It’s not a cheap item. For the price ($160) you get an excellent trigger along with a refresh of your internal parts, in my case some of those parts are updates to the Gen 4 line from GLOCK. We did a lot of testing with thousands of rounds downrange and the Skimmer is a joy to shoot. I can say matter of factly that it is staying in my 19.
As I get older, I just don’t have the time anymore to spend hours messing with a trigger to get it where I want it. If the trigger is that bad, I will send it to a gunsmith who knows what they are doing and I will get a solid result. In my case I don’t think the GLOCK stock trigger is all that bad but the Skimmer is one hell of an improvement. It’s an expensive piece of kit but it does what it says and if you are looking for the end result of a crisp trigger with no take-up, there is no easier way to get there. I really have fallen in love with this trigger and I highly recommend it.
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