Shooters in the United States have often noticed that the label on the Glock pistol case comes in different colors. Why? Well, with everything Glock, there’s a reason. Let’s dive into the meaning of the various colors.
It should be noted that the various colors discussed here really only started when Glock went to the clam-shell style cases. This occurred after the beginning of the Gen 3 pistol production. Early Gen 3 pistols still came in the old Tupperware style cases that were updated to fit pistols with finger grooves.
There are at least seven pistol case label colors used on Glocks seen in the U.S.:
White: Low capacity magazines (mags do not exceed 10 rounds). This was to comply with states with magazine capacity limitations. This includes (at one time or another):
California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Vermont. White label pistols are often now referred to as “California compliant” pistols.
Red: High capacity magazines (high capacity mags hold 10+ rounds)
Blue: High capacity magazines. The buyer must meet blue label requirements to be eligible (see https://us.glock.com/en/buy/blue-label-program). Under the right circumstances, ANYBODY can buy them unless they are in a state with magazine capacity restrictions. Can also be govt/mil contract guns.
Purple: Contract overrun guns. Can be sold to anyone, and are not required to meet MAP pricing. Could be just overseas/export contract overruns. These also don’t usually show the quantity or capacity of the magazines on the label in the normal middle-lower space. And they often don’t show the type of sites or trigger weight in the upper-middle space. It’s also common for the SKU to not follow the typical convention that I have outlined in Product SKU Number Breakdown.
Orange: Factory rebuilt guns. Can be sold to anyone, and are not required to meet MAP pricing
Green: U.S. manufactured for export. These also don’t usually show the quantity or capacity of the magazines on the label in the normal middle-lower space.
Yellow: Rebuilt (in two cases I’ve seen, Gen 4 MOS, and cutaway). I’ve heard that yellow labels are just faded orange labels, or just maybe a different supplier of labels for the rebuilt guns. That’s certainly plausible.
For Gen 3, white and red label come with 2 magazines, blue label come with 3.
For Gen 4 and later, all guns regardless of label color come with 3 magazines. An exception to this is the slimlines, which come with two magazines.
I’ve written before about how the SKU number in the upper right is broken down to signify the details of the pistol. See that info at Product SKU Number Breakdown.
Here is a breakdown of the product/SKU numbers found in the upper right corner of the case label. These only appear on pistol cases seen in the U.S., regardless of where they were manufactured. Label formats are different outside the U.S. There are plenty of deviations from this list from Glock, which should be no big surprise. I’ve documented over 500625 800 different SKUs just since Glock went to this format with the Gen 3 guns. Note that this is constantly evolving, and I’ve even seen some new info pop up just since the 43X and 48 were announced. If you have a label that has characters other than what is listed here, let me know. I’d love to see a case label and info so I can investigate. For more information on the different case label colors and what they mean, see Case Label Colors – What Do They Mean?
Note that it’s common to see SKUs listed that start with ‘GL’. The best I’ve been able to determine is that is a prefix that distributors like Lipseys add for internal use. The ‘GL’ is not part of the true Glock SKU number. Below each SKU is a UPC code that correlates to the SKU.
In the sections below, I break down the various characters, using the example SKU of PI2350202T. The bold items are the ones that are most common.
Prefix 1 – PI2350202T
E = US manufactured for export (green label)
F = Federal agency – non-military (red label on the ones I’ve seen)
G = Rebuilds FET IN (orange label)
M = Military P = AU manufactured U = US manufactured for domestic/Canada
Known anomalies are:
The U.S. manufactured Gen 4 17T, with a SKU of PG1050202, which would indicate Austrian manufacture.
Prefix 2 – PI2350202T
2 = SF ES 1913 Rail Military
3 = SF 1913 Rail Military
4 = ES 1913 Rail Military
5 = 1913 Rail Military
8 = P80 reissue
7 = SF GR MB
9 = SF 1913 MB A = Gen5
C = Cutaway
D = Practice
F = SF GR G = Gen4
H = 21SF RTF2, 30S I = Fxd or Adj Sight / Gen 3
L = Reset
M = M Series
N = Night sights
R = Rebuilds FET OUT T = RTF2 X = Crossover (used on the 19X and 43X)
Pistol Model – PI2350202T
These are just the numbers in the model of the pistol. A Glock 17 would be ’17’, as would a 17C, 17TB, 17R, 17P, 17T, 17L, etc. Known anomalies to this logic are:
0 = Standard
1 = Standard with lock
2 = Standard C with lock
5 = Unknown – seen on the green label Mariner pistols – possible maritime spring cups
7 = Green
8 = Green C
9 = Standard C
A = Threaded BBL
B = Flared Magwell/Practice
D = RTF/SP1
F = Flared Magwell
P = M Practice Series
R = M Reset S = Serrations – seen on newer production Gen 5 pistols with front serrations
SL = Silver Line – used on the 43X and 48
T = M T-Series
Sight type – PI2350202T
0 = No sights
1 = Adjustable 2 = Fixed
A or 3 = AmeriGlo sights
4 = Steel Fixed
5 = TALO / Export Lumi.
6 = TNS
7 = GNS
8 = Non-Glock sights
K = Unknown. Seen on one version of the 19M MOS pistols
P = Practice pistol (unconfirmed) – only seen on a Gen 5 17P
G – unconfirmed – likely an indicator of suppressor sights – seen on Gen 5 guns with suppressor sights and threaded barrels
Options – PI2350202T
0 = Standard
1 = XSS
2 = XMC
3 = XSS, XMC
4 = Steel front only
6 = Screw on TNS
7 = Screw on TNS / XSS
A = (unknown – seen on a 19M with PM195F7A2)
M = Maritime Spring cups
Magazine – PI2350202T
0 = 3x 10rd mags / LE Domestic (blue label)
0 = Special mag Config Export 1 = 10rd or less commercial (white label) 2 = LE/GSSF (blue label) 3 = Hi-Cap / Commercial (red label) – although have seen some blue labels, namely some ‘M’ pistols
4 = Unique Special Order Export Cerakoted Order Domestic; Distributor exclusive
5 = FBI POW Program (although I’ve seen them with a 7 as well)
6 = Engraved/Special Serial #’s (Glock U.S.A.)
7 = Engraved/Special Serial #’s (Glock Austria) – examples include the 20th-anniversary pistols
8 = Unique Special Orders Domestic
9 = FBI / ATF special configuration
A = Orange follower w/TFP
Unique Identifier – PI2350202T (I have seen a pistol that had multiple unique identifiers. The military MK27 MOD 1 has a ‘MOSU’ identifier), and some of the variations on the G45 include MOSTB, MOSTBDE, and MOSTBGF, among others.
2 = (not sure, but used on the G48)
3 = unknown – follows ‘EM’ on the green label Mariner pistols – possibly indicating 3 mags
A = Orange follower w/TFP
AB = AmeriGlo Bold
AC = AmeriGlo Co-witness
AM = Arabic Manual
B = 15rd 9mm Magazines
BA = 9rd 9mmm Magazines
BC = (not sure – used on battle-worn & slide cuts model by Chattanooga)
BFG = Battle Field Green (frame only)
BT = Bold TALO
CS = G23 mag w/10 coil spring
CSN = Consecutive Serial #
D = Dark Earth (frame only)
DE = Dark Earth (frame only)
EM = Extended Magazines
ESB = Enhanced Signature Barrel
FGR = Finger Groove & Rail
FM = French Manual
FR = Front Rail (seen on the 43X and 48 with light rails)
FS = Front Serration
GF = Grey Frame (frame only)
GMB = Glock Marking Barrel
H = Holster
L = Nickel
M = Mag Pouch (also see this on some ‘C’ models)
MB = Mag /Bag Combo
MOS = Modular Optical Sight
MOSC = Modular Optic Sight with factory-installed Shield RMSc optic
MS = Manual Safety
PM = 2+ & 1 Standard mag
PN = 1+ & 1 Standard mag
SL = Glock branded Streamlight TLR-7AH in FDE
T = T Pack
TB = Threaded Barrel
TBF = Tactical Brown Frame
U = UID Frame – These have the UID code on the bottom of the trigger guard. They look like a QR code, and are used by the government to track military pistols. Examples of pistols that have these are the Mk27 Mod 2, which is a Gen 4 G19 MOS made for SOCOM
UTM = Ultimate Training Munitions
X = 4 mags each case
C = Compensated
ES = External Safety
FET = Federal Excise Tax
GNS = Glock Night Sight
GR = Glock Rail
MB = Ambi Mag Catch
NY = New York
POW = FBI Personally Owned Weapon
RTF = Rough Texture Frame 2
SF = Short Frame
TNS = Trijicon Night Sight
XMC = Extended Mag Catch
XSS = Extended Slide Stop Lever
XXX = Non-Glock firearms
1913 = Piccatiny Rail
UPDATE: By the way – I wrote a quick Excel calculator to break down an entered product SKU. Just enter your SKU in the colored field and hit ENTER. The spreadsheet does use macros, but only for the functionality of the buttons. Download it here.
NOTE: This spreadsheet doesn’t take into account some of the anomalies or recent changes listed above.
Different Style Labels Outside of America
For pistols made outside of the U.S. that are not destined for the States, Glock uses an entirely different label format and SKU. The SKU number appears to just be a 4 or 5-digit number.
This is a running list of things I’m actively looking for. This is a living post and will be updated as needed. Please contact me if you have any of these items and are looking to part with them or know where I can obtain them. All firearms transactions MUST go through an FFL.
Note: Items that are strike-through are items I’ve purchased but have not yet received.
These are publicly released pistols that I’m actively looking for. Many are fairly hard to find. I prefer those pistols with the original case, including the matching case label, and all case contents (loader, brush, rod, lock, correct manual/packet, spent casing, etc.). But I’m willing to discuss any opportunity.
Glock 17 Gen 1 chambered in 9×21 IMI
Glock 17 Gen 1 chambered in 9×21 IMI with “CAT. 5180” stamp
Glock P9M Gen 2
Glock 17 Gen 2 chambered in 9×21 IMI with “CAT. 5180” stamp
Glock 17L Gen 2 ported
Glock 20C Gen 2
Glock 20CC Gen 2 – must include the original case with a matching label
Glock 21C Gen 2
Glock 21CC Gen 2 – must include the original case with a matching label
Glock 22CC Gen 2 – must include the original case with a matching label
Glock 23CC Gen 2 – must include the original case with a matching label
Glock 29 Gen 2
Glock 30 Gen 2
Glock 31 Gen 2
Glock 31CC Gen 2 – must include the original case with a matching label
Glock 32CC Gen 2 – must include the original case with a matching label
Glock 34 Gen 2
Glock 20C Gen 2.5
Glock 20CC Gen 2.5 – must include the original case with a matching label
Glock 21C Gen 2.5
Glock P9M Gen 3 used by Germany’s GSG9
Glock 17 Gen 3 chambered in 9×21 IMI with “CAT. 5180” stamp
Glock 17 Gen 3 chambered in 9×21 IMI without “CAT. 5180” stamp (just caliber)
Glock 17AO – Australian Gen 3 G17 with threaded barrel, in Olive Drab (GLOCK17AO)
Glock 19 Gen 3 chambered in 9×21 IMI
Glock 26 Gen 3 chambered in 9×21 IMI
Glock 29 Gen 3
Glock 31C Gen 3
Glock 34SC (“Sport Competition”) Gen 3 chambered in 9×21 with “CAT 10861” stamp – sold in Italy
Glock 35C Gen 3 – even though there were only 2 of these made, and they’re both owned by a collector I know, I can always wish, right?
Glock 17MB/19MB/21MB – Gen 3 ambidextrous mag release pistols from Europe. Not sure if the 21MB is the same 21SF pistol with ambidextrous mag release and Picatinny rail that was briefly available here in the U.S. I suspect not. The 17MB is also available in OD.
Glock 30 RTF2 FDE – yes, I know only 1 was made
Glock 30SF RTF2 FDE – only one exists
Glock 32 RTF2 (no gills)
Glock 17 Gen 4 chambered in 9×21 IMI with “CAT. 5180” stamp
Glock 17C Gen 4 chambered in 9×21 IMI
Glock 17 FTO Gen 4 chambered in 9×21 IMI (120mm-long threaded barrel)
Glock 17 LCS Gen 4 chambered in 9×21 IMI (milled slide cuts)
Glock 19 Gen 4 chambered in 9×21 IMI
Glock 19 Gen 4 MOS chambered in 9×21 IMI
Glock 19C Gen 4 chambered in 9×21 IMI
Glock 19 FTO Gen 4 chambered in 9×21 IMI (threaded barrel)