I chose the 26
Chiming in on this thread because I am a woman and I just chose a gen3 g26 over a Kahr CW9. I had researched the single stack 9mm's out there and couldn't find a S&W M&P Shield to save my soul (I'm also a bit wary of buying the very first run of most any product). Failing that I wanted to compare the Kahrs with the Kelt-Tec PM9 and the Ruger LC9. So I drove to the "big city," and checked out a few gun stores.
I'm a Ruger fan, but the LC9 felt like a plastic toy, had a poor grip, a trigger from hell, and safety that is pretty sticky to use. Next up, the Kel-Tec Pm9. No safety, a bit better trigger (all the single stack 9's seem to have DA trigger), but I was just afraid of relying on it due to the many problems reported with spurious mag ejections.
So it came down to the Kahrs. I knew they are built cheaply and aren't built to last, but I reasoned that a carry pistol needn't last for 10,000 rounds anyway. The problem was, I picked one up. I'm sorry but I need to be able to practice a lot with any carry gun before I potentially rely on it for my life (especially so with these DA only triggered pistols). I just cannot imagine putting hundreds of practice rounds through any of these tiny single stack pistols. My hand gets sore with my full-sized 9mm's after an afternoon at the range. I think they'd get bloodied if I tried to shoot one of these tiny pistols for any reasonable practices sessions.
OK, so there's the handling issues, and those pesky potential reliability problems. But it's still "just" a carry pistol. So I am standing at the gun counter with a Kahr CW9 in my hand. Having handled the other pistols I mentioned, I saw a gen3 G26 on the wall and asked the sales guy to let me compare it to the Kahr, mostly just as a "reference point." Alright, the 26 was a ~bit~ bigger in all dimensions, but to my surprise, it seemed to actually be a bit lighter! So, the 26 immediately entered my arena of carry-capable 9mm semi-auto pistols.
As I say, the 26 wasn't even on my radar when I went shopping. But I am standing there with a Kahr CW9 in one hand and a Glock 26 in the other, wondering, "why am I even considering getting a pistol with questionable quality and reliability (and one that I am convinced would be difficult for me to shoot well) over one with a sterling world-wide reputation for quality and reliability when there is such a slight difference in size and weight?" The facts that the 26 was a slight bit fatter (measured in fractions of an inch) and $150 more compared to the slimmer single-stack seemed to diminish greatly when I asked myself that crucial question.
So I came away with that gen3 G26 and have never looked back. In spite of my initial concerns, the short grip is absolutely no problem for me. I added a Pachmayer grip sleeve and I am shooting this little Baby Glock better than I am my full-sized Walther PPQ 9mm. 500 rounds later , it has eaten up everthing I've fed it without a hiccup, and it conceals quite nicely in my purse, too.
The added confidence I now have in the 26 is worth every penny and ounce. I wouldn't trade my G26 for anything!
Glocking in Western Colorado
g3 26, g4 34