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New Handgun

Old 03-13-2009, 11:05 AM
  #1  
Fork Horn
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Default New Handgun

Hey all. Just a few questions. Im thinking about buying my first handgun and was looking for some input. I currently own a S&W 357 that was my dads. I rarely shoot it and im not real into handguns or revolvers for that matter.

Just joined a local gun club and they have an indoor pistol range, so im looking for something to just shoot there recreationally, but also serve as home defence.

Im not real familiar with what is available, but im looking for a reasonably priced gun that will serve me well. IT doesnt have to be stainless steel or fancy.

I was thinking about a 9mm, 40cal, or 45acp
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Old 03-13-2009, 09:12 PM
  #2  
Typical Buck
 
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Default RE: New Handgun

If you go with a 9mm, I suggest getting one that is approvedby the manufacturer for at least +P ammoif it isto also serve as a house gun. Being approved for+P+ would even be better. With a 45, being approved for +P is a nice option. If you go with a 45 make sure it is a 45ACP and not a 45GAP or some other 45 cartridge in a semi-auto.

I don't like magazine disconnects on a defensive firearm. I also do not like internal locking mechanisms designed to keep unauthorized people from firing the firearm. Handguns from more than one manufactuer with an internal locking mechanism has failed at my club. I also do not want a safety on a defensive handgun unless it is a single action 1911 - realize that I have had quite a bit of training and experience, andI still continue to take certified and non-certifiedcourses.

Since you are new to handguns, I suggest a striker-fired handgun. I would also suggest a loaded chamber indicator and a cocked indicator. Night sights would also be good. Night sights can be added later, but checkto see what the cost would be for night sights on the after-market. Some guns use a non-standard sight mounting system sonight sights for thosehandguns will be higher and may be harder to find. A picatinny railmay come in handy for a light or laser.

Take a look at the Springfield XD and XD(M) - be aware that mags are not interchangable between the XD and XD(M). H&K also makes some nice handguns. Glock is another option - beaware thatpeople either love or hate Glocks. Personally, I do not care for Glock. Finda firearmthat fits your hand and natural point of aim well. You mentioned belonging to a club. See if you can shoot several different models in the different calibers (you provide the ammo). Find out if the firearm is stock or has received custom or after-market work. Sometimes people have a trigger job or some other type of work done on a firearm. If you have instructors at your club, I would ask more than one ofthem their opinion on how the gun fits your hand.

A standard pressure9mm will have less recoil than a 40S&W or 45ACP. Also be aware the recoilof a 40S&W is more of a snap, and the recoil of a 45ACP is more of a push. If you have no problems with the recoilfrom a 357 mag with a 4 inch or shorter barrel, you should have no problems with a 9mm, 40S&W or 45ACP.

I strongly suggest you receive proper training. The NRA Basic Pistol course would be a good starting point. At my club, we also work on accuracy in this course.
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Old 03-14-2009, 05:55 AM
  #3  
Giant Nontypical
 
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Default RE: New Handgun

I guess "reasonably priced" is in the eye of the beholder. There are many nice M1911A1 .45's from various sources out there, and they don't all cost an arm & a leg.......
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Old 03-15-2009, 07:24 AM
  #4  
Typical Buck
 
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Default RE: New Handgun

Check out Springfeild XD pistols. they are very good firearms at a reasonable price. But before anything, worry more about the gun that fits your hand and that you are comfortable with. Don't get a "glock" to be cool like other glock owners. Are the poster above mentioned, either you hate them or love them. I hate then as the angle of the grip is awkward for me. But they are a great gun. Again, find a gun that fits you, and worry about caliber and price second. Todays 9mm ammo is fine for a defense gun and i think 9mm is fine for a defense situation. My XD can hold 17 rounds of which i can fire off with out a problem. To me this is important. I have seen women bring 357's to the range only to figure out they can't hit paper at 15 feet due to recoil and being "too much gun".

remember, just find something that fits you.
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Old 03-15-2009, 10:38 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Default RE: New Handgun

CarpetBagger- I just bought my first handgun a couple of months ago. After doing a lot of research and looking around, I chose the XDm in .40 caliber. It's not the cheapest one out there, but like others have recommended, I chose the one that felt the best in my hand. Almost every review that I read on the XDm was positive too, so that just helped to support my decision.

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Old 03-15-2009, 02:56 PM
  #6  
Fork Horn
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Default RE: New Handgun

Let me revise my original post a bit.

I am familiar with handguns and have shot a few.

I have shot the 357 a bit, but reason being why I dont shoot alot is the lack of a place to discharge the firearm. Same withmy rifles..Being a member of the local gun club here will allow me to shoot more and shoot more often since its only about 2 miles from where I sit. Im pretty excited to have a place where ill be able to shoot on a regular basis.

Im leaning more towards a 40cal just cause its in between the 9mm and 45 and think its a nice middle ground. I havent really gone too far yet to go out and buy or handle any of them yet, but i know that if i do buy oneI would prefer it to be American made.

I do like the look of the S&W M&P as well as the XD Springfields you posted above.

Im looking somewhere in the $500 range. Hoping that can get me a nice solid pistol for years of problem free shooting.

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Old 03-15-2009, 06:33 PM
  #7  
Typical Buck
 
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Default RE: New Handgun

If they don't allow 357 Mags to be shot at your club, you can shoot 38 Special in a 357 Mag.

If you are looking for an American made gun, another consideration is Ruger. Ruger generally is not a tack driver sofew are used for competition. However, the P Series are built like a tank; and IMOthey are very reliable. I personally don't know anyone with a RugerP Series that had feeding, ejection or failure to fireproblems, and the accuracy is good. The RugerP95(9MM)is used by some divisions of the U.S. military, andit is also used by military personnelof some other countries. The grips on aRugerare not the greatest, but you can add a Hogue Handall for under $10. IMO,the Hogue Handallmakes the Ruger P Series a much better handgun, and it is likely your accuracy will improve.
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Old 03-15-2009, 07:13 PM
  #8  
Fork Horn
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Default RE: New Handgun

No they allow the 357 rounds...I can shoot 38s out of my 357 too...Im just not a huge fan of revolvers. and the 357 has a 6in barrel so its a little big IMO.

Just looking for a nice all roundsemi auto to shoot.
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Old 03-15-2009, 07:33 PM
  #9  
Typical Buck
 
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Default RE: New Handgun

ORIGINAL: semi

I have seen women bring 357's to the range only to figure out they can't hit paper at 15 feet due to recoil and being "too much gun".

IMO, everyone should start off with a 22LR (handgun and rifle). Doing this gives an opportunity for a new shooterto work onproper form without any recoil issues. Oncethey consistantly use proper form and have good/consistant accuracy,they canthen move up in caliber and recoil. You will pay some extra money initially by buying a 22LR first, but you will more than save this money when you move to a larger caliber. The money will be saved in ammo, beinga more accurateshooter, building more confidence and having more fun. A person can do most of their shooting with a 22LR to continue working on their form and accuracyand some shooting with the larger calibers. If the next gun for a person after a 22LRis a 357 Mag, they should start with 38 Specialthen progress to 38 Special +P, a light 357 Mag, a medium 357 Mag and finally full power 357 Mag (if needed).
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Old 03-15-2009, 07:38 PM
  #10  
Nontypical Buck
 
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Default RE: New Handgun

I am loving my Springfield XD in 45acp. It fits my hands well, doesn't cause blisters with repeated firing and its easy to shoot well.
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