There are plenty of reasons to love the Glock 19, the more compact version of the popular Glock 17, including the size, friendly ergonomics and low-recoil handling. In fact, it is easy to see why it has been a top-selling gun since being first introduced more than thirty years ago.
However, one thing that some shooters don’t love about the Glock 19 is the price—and while it doesn’t fall into the “expensive” category by any means, for bargain shoppers the Glock 19 is just often more than a lot of shooters want to spend.
There are some solid alternatives to the Glock, but one option missing from his list was a firearm that was only made its debut this year. Out of the gate, it is also one that should top any list of handguns worth considering over the Glock 19.
Meet the Palmetto State Armory’s PS9 Dagger
Introduced this year at the annual SHOT Show (Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade Show), the PS9 Dagger is the company’s first strike-fired pistol but it isn’t exactly original in any respect. At first glance, it is hard not to see the Glock influence, but even beyond the fact that both are polymer-framed, magazine-fed handguns, the PS9 Dagger actually has near 100 percent parts compatibility with the third generation Glock handguns.
A few years ago this might have even resulted in a patent infringement lawsuit.
Attack of the Clones
We’re now at that point in the story, however, where just like the automatic-rifle (AR) platform and the 1911 before it, we’re starting to see some great alternate offerings to the Glock. Just as it is possible to find ARs in all sorts of price points from different makers—the same that has been true of the 1911 for decades—now it is the Glock Gen 3 patents that have expired.
That has created an opportunity for manufacturers and shooters alike—at least for those other than Glock.
Palmetto State Armory (PSA) has already made its name for producing low-priced AR and AK parts, and the company clearly has keen-eyed legal experts who watch for patent opportunities—and this has paid off. PSA has swooped in and is among the first companies to have produced a pistol that is a Glock 19 in everything but name. Yet, at the same time, PSA has “improved” upon the design, opting for metal sights instead of the plastic ones found on the actual Austrian-made Glock 19s. The Dagger’s undercut trigger guard also provides the shooter’s hands with a bit more space and allows for a higher grip.
Moreover, despite the fact that this is a budget handgun it doesn’t actually seem to be one. All the internal components are stainless steel, and it is really a well designed, well-built firearm. As with other products the costs are high not only because of the materials and craftsmanship but to recover the R&D costs. When you’re producing a clone you save on those costs in a big way.
The PSA PS9 Dagger ships with a P15 magazine, but shooters can still use their G17, G19 and other 9-millimeter magazines as well. And as noted it is nearly compatible with original Gen 3 parts, which should ensure this handgun can be maintained for years even if PSA stops manufacturing it.
Now, straight to the point with this Dagger, the best thing to love might just be the $299 MSRP. Given all the other factors, if that doesn’t make it a great alternative to Glock, it is hard to see what would!
Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He is the author of several books on military headgear including A Gallery of Military Headdress, which is available on Amazon.com.