When I began shooting handguns, one of the first problems I encountered was the difficulty in being able to properly rack my pistol. I was first taught to utilize the slingshot technique, which I immediately found I could not do quickly, due to my inability to get a good grip on the rear of the slide, and just plain lack of strength. Now I always use the overhand grip, but I still sometimes find that my hand slides a bit on the barrel, especially if it is not completely dry. When I was first contacted about reviewing the Hatfield Tactical Racker, I’ll be honest, I had no idea what it even was. Once I learned that it was specifically designed to improve the shooter’s ability to manipulate the slide, I was ecstatic. This could solve my fear of being unable to quickly clear a jam in an emergency situation.
Hatfields Gunsmithing designed the tactical racker in two different sizes to fit all GLOCK pistols. When I first received it, I had no idea how to attach it to my pistol. I realized that I needed to remove the slide cover plate and replace it with the Hatfield Racker; the problem was that I had no clue how to do this. There were no instructions on the packaging, but a quick search on Hatfield’s website led to a short demo video. After watching the video, I was easily able to remove the slide cover plate and install the Hatfield Racker in less than five minutes on my GLOCK 19.
When I went to the range, I took along a second GLOCK 19 that did not have the Hatfield Racker installed so I could really get a feel for the difference. The first thing I noticed was that I could easily utilize the slingshot method on the gun with the Hatfield Racker; I still struggled to do so without it. Because I am accustomed to the overhand method of racking, I knew that even with the Hatfield Racker attached, in an emergency situation, my habitual method would not change. I quickly noticed, however, that the Hatfield Racker also helped with this type of grip as it stabilizes your hand by giving you a place to rest your thumb.
Another benefit that the Hatfield Racker brings is the ability to rack your pistol with only one hand. I tried this out by holding the pistol in my right hand, and resting the Hatfield Racker on the edge of a picnic table. The Hatfield Racker easily held the slide, so that when I pushed the gun downward with only one hand, it quickly chambered a round.
GLOCK has a reputation for being tough and durable; the same appears to hold true for the Hatfield Racker. It is machined from billet aluminum then hard anodized for a tough finish. It has a solid feel to it, and when installed on my pistol, I could tell it was secure.
This product was provided to reviewer for review.
Jennifer Yoder is a Pennsylvania freelance writer that also shoots competitively. View all posts by Jennifer L Yoder