PER­FOR­MANCE BASED PER­FEC­TION

FOWLER IN­DUS­TRIES CUS­TOM BUILDS PIS­TOLS USED FOR EV­ERY­DAY CARRY, RECRE­ATIONAL RANGE SHOOT­ING AND COM­PE­TI­TION.

Tactical World - - Contents - By Ja­son Davis

Fowler In­dus­tries cus­tom builds pis­tols used for ev­ery­day carry, range shoot­ing and com­pe­ti­tion.

I am pretty sure the first words ut­tered from a very good friend of mine when he learned I’d just bought a Glock were, "Hell truly has just frozen over…”

Let me step back in time and give you a brief jour­ney on my grow­ing up with firearms and why own­ing a Glock was some­what mon­u­men­tal.

In 1978, I passed my hunter safety course at the age of 6 years old. My fa­ther read the ques­tions to me and I an­swered true or false to what he was ask­ing. Fol­low­ing the com­ple­tion of this test, my fa­ther handed me a Colt Gov­ern­ment model that was fit­ted with a 22-con­ver­sion kit. This was the start of my pis­tol shoot­ing and also the start of my re­la­tion­ship with 1911-based pis­tols.

Grow­ing up as a young­ster in the 70s and into the early 80s, IPSC (In­ter­na­tional Prac­ti­cal Shoot­ing Con­fed­er­a­tion) shoot­ing was big in my fam­ily as my fa­ther was a cus­tom hol­ster maker. South­ern Cal­i­for­nia had its fair share of ranges and shoot­ing, and watch­ing peo­ple shoot this game was a weekly doing for my fa­ther and me. Dur­ing this time, pretty much all of the top shoot­ers were shoot­ing some type of 1911-based plat­form, and it was no dif­fer­ent for my fa­ther and me.

Fast-forward a few years, and a 1911 pis­tol has been on my side for nearly two decades in law en­force­ment. The 1911-based pis­tol is some­thing that is merely an ex­ten­sion of my hands, hav­ing fired tens of thou­sands if not hun­dreds of thou­sands of rounds through mul­ti­ple pis­tols that I have ac­cess to on a daily ba­sis.

When Glocks first came on the scene, I raised my nose to this "plas­tic type weapon" and darn near swore that I would never be shoot­ing one of these guns, ba­si­cally be­cause it was not a 1911. Colt was the name of the game that I played, and I pretty much bled blue for that ram­pant pony.

Glocks – and Fowler – on the Hori­zon

As I got older, I started to gain my foot­ing in law en­force­ment, and train­ing and writ­ing both broad­ened my hori­zons quite a bit. Next thing I knew I was at a multi-day course where all of those in at­ten­dance were is­sued Glock pis­tols for train­ing. When in Rome…so I shot with this pis­tol quite a bit over a few days. I was sur­prised by how much I liked the pis­tol. I fol­lowed up the course with a trip to the gun shop where I pur­chased my first Glock pis­tol. That was a few years ago, and now I seem to have a new ob­ses­sion with the pis­tols I used to snub.

Just about the time I started get­ting into Glocks, I was in­tro­duced to Lo­gan Fowler, the owner and chief builder be­hind cen­tral Cal­i­for­nia-based Fowler In­dus­tries. Like me, Fowler grew up in a fam­ily that shoots, and he has been shoot­ing since he was a young­ster as well. His fa­ther, Mickey Fowler, was one of the top IPSC shoot­ers in the 70s and 80s, so Lo­gan Fowler has learned a thing or two in the shoot­ing world.

The younger Fowler and I kept in con­tact af­ter our first meet­ing and be­gan to talk more and more in depth about Glocks and about the pis­tols he was go­ing to start build­ing. His first

foray into the gun in­dus­try was with En­hanced Pre­ci­sion Prod­ucts where he de­signed and built rear sights for Glocks. This rear sight now adorns the ma­jor­ity of the pis­tols that come out of his cur­rent shop, Fowler In­dus­tries.

Fowler’s Vi­sion

The vi­sion for Fowler In­dus­tries started a cou­ple of years ago when Fowler be­gan work­ing on his per­sonal pis­tols that he used for con­cealed carry, recre­ational shoot­ing and in com­pe­ti­tions. See­ing how the pis­tols per­formed af­ter send­ing tens of thou­sands of rounds through them over the years, Fowler be­gan to think how he could im­prove upon the ba­sic pis­tol's de­sign. Work­ing on pis­tols, and mak­ing changes to the frame, the slide and the ig­ni­tion sys­tem, Fowler be­gan to build his brand. When the time came to fi­nally spin up and start putting his logo on the weapons com­ing out of his shop, I sent him a Glock 19 that I would start car­ry­ing.

Over the years, Fowler has found what works best on Glock pis­tols and has de­fined the brand with his Mark 1, Mark 2 and Mark 3 se­ries of builds. His com­pany takes into ac­count what a cus­tomer will need and has vari­a­tions specif­i­cally for pis­tols used for ev­ery­day carry, recre­ational range shoot­ing and for com­pe­ti­tion pis­tols. Build­ing per­for­mance-based weapons is ex­actly what Fowler In­dus­tries does and by doing so, it is cap­tur­ing a pretty big spot­light.

Cus­tom-built Mark 1

Prior to send­ing Fowler In­dus­tries my pis­tol, we talked about my needs, their ideas for de­signs and some of the work that would be per­formed on this pis­tol. Be­cause this was go­ing to pri­mar­ily be a pis­tol I would carry off-duty, we de­cided to go with his Mark 1 de­sign. My Glock 19 would see cer­tain slide mod­i­fi­ca­tions, quite a bit of frame­work, an en­hanced trig­ger sys­tem as well as one of his hand fit match grade bar­rels. Sights for this pis­tol would be his En­hanced Pre­ci­sion Prod­ucts Lock Back Rear Sight with a gold bead front, which I have on the ma­jor­ity of pis­tols I carry on and off duty. Once all the specifics were con­firmed, my pis­tol headed out to the Fowler In­dus­tries shop.

If I told you wait­ing for this pis­tol was like a child wait­ing for Santa Claus on Christ­mas morn­ing, that would be an un­der­state­ment. As the weeks went on, I thought about get­ting the pis­tol back in my hands al­most daily. Talk­ing with Fowler on a pretty con­sis­tent ba­sis about what was hap­pen­ing, the stages of the build, and all of the other de­tails that went into this pis­tol made wait­ing even tougher.

“Truly Beau­ti­ful Pis­tol”

When the pis­tol was fi­nally com­pleted, Fowler made a trip down to South­ern Cal­i­for­nia to get the pis­tol back to me. Upon open­ing the case, I re­al­ized I was look­ing at a truly beau­ti­ful pis­tol. I let Fowler In­dus­tries choose the fin­ish of this pis­tol and the de­sign­ers de­cided to sur­face grind the sides of the slide and make the rest a matte black fin­ish. By sur­face grind­ing the sides of the slide, it ap­pears to be al­most a black mir­ror with an obsidian shine to those por­tions of the slide. The con­trast of the matte and the shine made a very el­e­gant look­ing pis­tol.

Tak­ing in ev­ery­thing about this pis­tol, I locked on to nu­mer­ous de­sign fea­tures. Con­tin­u­ing with the slide, the top and side ser­ra­tions to the front of the slide are crisp and pure. They also make for a pos­i­tive grip if you de­cide to pull the slide back from the front. Mak­ing ad­di­tional mass re­duc­tion cuts to the sides and the top of the slide makes re­coil seem quite a bit less and al­lows for quicker fol­low-up shots.

One more ad­di­tion that Fowler In­dus­tries does to its slides is to ma­chine and area for a Trijicon RMR op­tic. This area is then cov­ered by a plate that comes stan­dard on the builds. Once re­moved, you can place an RMR onto this slide, which gives you an­other op­tion for sight­ing.

frame­work and me­chan­ics

Mov­ing on to the frame­work and to the in­ter­nals of the ig­ni­tion sys­tem, Fowler In­dus­tries takes its time, and per­forms flaw­less tex­tur­ing and makes needed cuts to a Glock frame. The un­der­cut made on my pis­tol is re­ally help­ful, as I have size 4X hands, which not a lot of pis­tols fit into. The cut Fowler In­dus­tries makes al­lows for the pis­tol to sit down into your grip. This al­lows per­fect sight align­ment when fully ex­tended and ready to shoot. The mag­a­zine re­lease area is scal­lop cut, and is the most gen­er­ous of all of the cuts I have seen on cus­tom Glocks. Again, a great ad­di­tion for some­body with hands that ri­val those of a Yeti. The tex­tur­ing on this pis­tol is not su­per-ag­gres­sive and does not wear against your skin or

“BY SUR­FACE GRIND­ING THE SIDES OF THE SLIDE, IT AP­PEARS TO BE AL­MOST A BLACK MIR­ROR WITH AN OBSIDIAN SHINE…”

cloth­ing if car­ry­ing con­cealed. This is nice, as you do not need to con­stantly worry about fray­ing cloth­ing or plac­ing ban­dages on af­fected ar­eas of your body nightly.

Get­ting into the in­ter­nals and bar­rel, one starts to re­al­ize why this is not only a beau­ti­ful look­ing pis­tol, but also func­tion­ally flaw­less and su­perbly ac­cu­rate. Fowler In­dus­tries works some sort of magic with their pol­ish­ing and hon­ing, giv­ing the trig­ger an amaz­ing 4- to 4 ½-pound pull that is as smooth as silk. One of my gripes for years with a Glock trig­ger has been the trig­ger pull weight, fol­lowed by grit­ti­ness and some­times a hump that you must over­come dur­ing a trig­ger press. I felt none of that is felt with the Fowler In­dus­tries build. Add their En­hanced Glock Pin Set, and you can start to imag­ine how this trig­ger will func­tion for the shooter.

The U.s.-made Bar­rel

One last item on this build – and a pretty im­por­tant part – is the Fowler In­dus­tries bar­rel. Built to its spec­i­fi­ca­tions, Fowler In­dus­tries has its bar­rels made by a U.S. man­u­fac­turer, and they come to the shop in a con­fig­u­ra­tion that al­lows the com­pany to complete the fit­ting. Each bar­rel is fit in its shop and they are done so to the most minute tol­er­ances. The bar­rels on the Fowler In­dus­tries pis­tols have off­set box flut­ing, a re­cessed crown, cham­bered muz­zle and are usu­ally fin­ished in a black ni­tride, though other op­tions are available.

When is was time to cre­ate the color scheme of this weapon, Fowler de­cided to keep the bar­rel on my pis­tol raw stain­less steel, which com­ple­ments the rest of the pis­tol very nicely. The colors com­ple­ment each other in­cred­i­bly well; the matte black slide with a lit­tle bit is shine where it was sur­face ground is fol­lowed by the pure stain­less steel of the bar­rel.

“I FI­NALLY FOUND A PIS­TOL, OTHER THAN A 1911, THAT WORKED WITH ME AND WHAT I WAS DOING.”

At the Range

With the build complete, pis­tol in my hand and a full belly from lunch, I could not get to the range fast enough and start load­ing mag­a­zines to feed my new Fowler In­dus­tries Glock 19.

With a hand­ful of mag­a­zines and more than a few boxes of am­mu­ni­tion, I jammed them to ca­pac­ity as quickly as I could grab rounds from boxes. With five mag­a­zines full of PRIME Am­mu­ni­tion's 124-grain FMJ loads, I started shoot­ing from a few dif­fer­ent cour­ses of fire that I shoot to judge my abil­i­ties on any given day.

Us­ing the NRA "bull’s-eye" tar­get as my go-to, I quickly found my­self shoot­ing be­tween 3 and 25 yards. I need to call my­self out here – I am not a per­son who can shoot 290s or above on the FBI qual­i­fi­ca­tion course. I can pass, but I can­not shoot tiny groups at 25 yards. That said, with this pis­tol I shocked my­self with my shoot­ing per­for­mance.

While shoot­ing the Mark 1 pis­tol for the first time and go­ing through the first few of sev­eral mag­a­zines, a rev­e­la­tion or two oc­curred. I fi­nally found a pis­tol, other than a 1911, that worked with me and what I was doing. How could this be for some­one who has pri­mar­ily shot 1911-based plat­forms for the ma­jor­ity of his life? How could I like a "plas­tic" gun? It just so hap­pens that this Fowler In­dus­tries­built Glock 19 is now one of my go-to pis­tols off duty and on the range, whether train­ing or shoot­ing for fun.

Shoot­ing this pis­tol is very easy and the per­for­mance is just about flaw­less. What Fowler In­dus­tries has done with its ma­chine work on the slide with re­gard to light­en­ing makes re­coil seem much less and al­lows for the shooter

to get back on tar­get very quickly. Whether shoot­ing the 124-grain PRIME Am­mu­ni­tion or 147-grain Fed­eral, both loads per­form and func­tion con­sis­tently. With the frame­work that is done on the Glock plat­form, the pis­tol sits down into my hands and it al­lows a much truer grip than a pis­tol that is stock. Work­ing through a hand­ful of drills on the first day shoot­ing this pis­tol, I was im­me­di­ately over­joyed with the per­for­mance, ac­cu­racy and abil­ity of this plat­form.

Con­cealed-carry Friendly

Car­ry­ing this pis­tol is rather easy; it hides very well and does not print what­so­ever. I carry the Mark 1 in a cou­ple of dif­fer­ent ways and in a few hol­sters. One hol­ster I use for ditch­ing this pis­tol is the "Deep Con­ceal­ment Hol­ster" that is sold by the Sher­iff of Baghdad (Sergeant Ma­jor (ret.) John “Shrek” Mcfee) at www.sob­man­swag. com. This par­tic­u­lar hol­ster covers the muz­zle and the trig­ger area of the pis­tol and pretty much al­lows, as the name of the hol­ster states, for deep con­ceal­ment by ditch­ing a pis­tol ei­ther via an ap­pen­dix carry or to­ward the rear of your strong or sup­port side.

Two other hol­sters I am us­ing with the Fowler In­dus­tries pis­tol are both made by Tap Rack Hol­sters of Fresno, Calif. One is its In­side the Waist­band (IWB) hol­ster and the other is its full-size hol­ster. Both are in­cred­i­bly well built Ky­dex hol­sters, and I use its cor­re­spond­ing mag­a­zine pouches as well. What I am doing or where I am go­ing pretty much dic­tates what hol­ster set up I will be us­ing. TW

“SHOOT­ING THIS PIS­TOL IS VERY EASY AND THE PER­FOR­MANCE IS JUST ABOUT FLAW­LESS.”

Grip stip­pling, an­gled front ser­rar­tions and a black ni­tride fin­ish are just a few things that make this this Fowler cus­tom Glock one sexy beast. LEARN MORE For more in­for­ma­tion about Fowler In­dus­tries, visit www.fi­guns.com, or call 209-328-2675.

Mass re­duc­tion cuts, trig­ger guard un­der­cuts and pyra­mid rear ser­ra­tions not only look good but in­crease a base Glock’s per­for­mance.

Pre­ci­sion is the name of the game at Fowler In­dus­tries. Here, a trig­ger guard is dou­ble un­der­cut with per­fect radii.

Not just a re­worked stock bar­rel. Fowler In­dus­tries cus­tom builds also fea­ture a pur­pose built and fit FI BLK Match bar­rel.

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