Although an old news item now, the replacement of the Browning pistol with the Glock 17 for British Forces http://www.army.mod.uk/24697.aspx is worth a mention in our update as it was a significant event. The Browning has been the British military pistol since 1967 – quite an achievement for a weapon which was designed nearly 100 years ago. It certainly serves to demonstrate that pistol development over past decades has been through small improvements rather than major leaps forward.
The most important benefit of the Glock 17 over the old Browning Hi-Power is that it can fire 5 rounds inside 2 seconds, whereas the Browning would take 4 seconds to fire its first round. This speedier deployment derives from the fact that the Glock’s safety arrangement permits the weapon to be carried with a chambered round. In contrast the Browning was not permitted to be carried with a round in the chamber for fear of an accidental discharge.
Picture source: glock.at
It is interesting to compare the Browning, the US military handgun (the Beretta M9) and the Glock 17.
Browning Hi Power
Barrel Length 118mm
Weight 885 g
M9 stats (army.mil)
Barrel Length 125mm
Weight 953 g
Glock 17 stats (glock.at)
Barrel Length 114mm
Weight 625 g
From the comparison it is clear why the writing was on the wall for the Hi Power as far as the British military were concerned. Not only do the improved safety features enable users to react so much faster with the Glock, but the huge weight saving from the polymer construction helps to ease the burden of the individual soldier.
But FN/browning.com are still marketing the HP MkIII as a classic weapon for the discerning owner so this weapon’s time is far from over.
FWS has many different alternative ways to safely store both the Browning HP, the M9 and the Glock – please contact us for more details.