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View Full Version : Advice, plz... first handgun


Dark&Good
03-06-2009, 1:22 AM
Hi,
I'm about to get my first handgun, I just have no idea what brand/model. I do know my preferences, so please consider these before suggesting:
- legal
- I need it for self/others' defense against humans
- I need it for max. 20 meter (60 ft) shots
- needs to have little enough recoil/muzzle jump to allow for accurate 2nd shot
- ammo for it has to be available "everywhere"
- I'm not reloading
- working, no matter what
- very accurate over the above distance

What do you say?

ThatFishGuy
03-06-2009, 1:36 AM
There's at least a dozen 9mm autos that fit that. some argue the validity of 9mm as a self defense round but there are some really good loads available for it. golcks, xd's, CZ's, berettas, SW m&p, im sure there are a few others but these seem to be the most commonly recommended. if you want more knockdown power im sure people will recommend a 1911 in .45. more expensive round but still widely available. recoil isnt too bad either IMO. Is that as specific as your needs get? MANY guns fit the bill, most experienced people are just going to tell you to go rent a few and see what you shoot best with. And since you dont have any stand-out requirements, thats probably not a bad idea. HTH

Dark&Good
03-06-2009, 1:50 AM
MIGHT need to CC it. I could do the $575 tops version in one piece, the $800 wouldn't be easy... For some reason I LOOOVE 8+ magazine handguns, but I'd rather have something that doesn't need many bullets to do the job. I shot my friends' guns, I seem to be pretty accurate with those 3 models.
Let me put an additional viewpoint in it: from 60 feet, what is the smallest caliber that would always break a human skull?

oaklander
03-06-2009, 1:57 AM
Most shootings happen within a few feet.

You might want to go to a range that rents pistols and try some different ones.

Sobriquet
03-06-2009, 2:16 AM
Let me put an additional viewpoint in it: from 60 feet, what is the smallest caliber that would always break a human skull?

On your 666th post, THAT is the question you ask? lol

Take a class and rent as many different models as you can. Get the one you shoot the best from a reputable brand. If you're going to use the gun for home defense, IMHO, stick to Heckler & Koch, Sig Sauer, or Glock.

9mm, 357 sig, .40 S&W, or .45acp are the acceptable auto self-defense calibers. 9mm is the cheapest and softest recoiling. We're limited to 10 rounds here in California, so extra capacity from 9mm is usually a moot point depending on the model. 357 sig and .40 have a sharper recoil and I'm not a fan. I also don't really see the logic of an intermediate round. If you need more than a 9mm, get a .45.

[Edit:] Come to think of it, how does someone get over 600 posts without owning a handgun? lol

comandante costello
03-06-2009, 2:40 AM
Let me put an additional viewpoint in it: from 60 feet, what is the smallest caliber that would always break a human skull?

:wacko:

Plisk
03-06-2009, 3:28 AM
Let me put an additional viewpoint in it: from 60 feet, what is the smallest caliber that would always break a human skull?

To answer your question, a .22 within decent range. As for home defense, most would agree .45 ACP is the best hands down. If you want something a little lighter, a .38 revolver is a decent defense gun with the right ammo. My buddy bought a Kimber CDP the other day (I'm not sure which model, not full size I know that) for defense and CC, and it's a sweet gun. The price for it is bank-breaking, but it's an awesome pistol.

If you want personal defense with CC capability, a 1911 would probably be your best bet IMO.

kermit
03-06-2009, 3:55 AM
While you're renting guns, try a 357 magnum with a six inch barrel. They are generally foolproof with factory loads and you could always shoot 38 Specials for practice.

IMHO, headshots are not generally recommended in real world situations as the first shot. The target is small and generally moving around; you're adrenaline's pumping; your fine motor skills are diminished, and your vision is "tunneled". Go with center of mass first and head shots if the COM shots are ineffective.

Miltiades
03-06-2009, 4:38 AM
I think it is rare for a civilian to fire self defense shots with a handgun at 60 feet. You would only fire with legal justification if your life were in immediate danger. How would a person 60 feet away be threatening your life? He would have to be shooting at you from that distance. Nobody with a knife or club could really threaten you effectively at 60 feet.

I would worry more about somebody threatening my life from 10 feet away, or less.

ieballplyr@aol.com
03-06-2009, 7:27 AM
My First gun was a Sig P226 and have no regrets I tried a lot of guns at the range and loved the way the sig felt and shot

duck814
03-06-2009, 9:28 AM
Caliber: 9mm. Here's a good reference for suitable self-defense ammunition http://ammo.ar15.com/project/Self_Defense_Ammo_FAQ/index.htm (my personal preference, Winchester Ranger 147 gr RA9T).

Type: I'd go polymer frame pistols. Glock, XD, HK would all do the job. (XD features a grip safety, trigger safety, loaded chamber indicator, and cocking indicator which could be valuable to a first time gun owner)

downfall
03-06-2009, 9:33 AM
from your requirements a Glock 17C/19c would fit the bill.

fairfaxjim
03-06-2009, 9:37 AM
For your very first, if you intend on using it for self defense, I would recommend a .357 mag. revolver, probably 4" barrel minimum. You can do most of your training with .38 special which is very readily available for decent price. They are accurate, and if you have a decent one, pretty much fail safe.

BTF/PTM
03-06-2009, 9:46 AM
If you go semi-auto, I vote for a P226 in 9mm. If you're using it for defense it'll have hollowpoints in it so you'll have plenty of "stopping power". The extra money you'll spend to buy it will come back many fold. If the P226 isn't in your budget I'd say go for the revolver as mentioned earlier.

fairfaxjim
03-06-2009, 10:37 AM
If you go semi-auto, I vote for a P226 in 9mm. If you're using it for defense it'll have hollowpoints in it so you'll have plenty of "stopping power". The extra money you'll spend to buy it will come back many fold. If the P226 isn't in your budget I'd say go for the revolver as mentioned earlier.

I absolutely love the P226 9mm. That has been my number one go to gun for years. However, for a first gun, particularly for self defense, I believe in the KISS principal, and in learning to shoot, I mean learning to shoot VERY WELL! For self defense situation, the SS in KISS doesn't mean Simple Stupid, it means SUPER SIMPLE! The best tactical weapon and gear money can buy won't help you in a stressed out situation if you can't work it or you can't shoot well under stress. Remember, all of those people who use that stuff for real iin real situations not only put their life in their gear, but in their traning.

I see so many people on here asking about what nifty weapon to buy first, but hardly anybody asking about how to learn to shoot! :confused:

Get a good revolver and put a few thousand rounds of quality training time down the barrel, then move up.

eccvets
03-06-2009, 10:49 AM
9mm cant be found everywhere anymore.

rkt88edmo
03-06-2009, 10:51 AM
glock 19

jmf_tracy
03-06-2009, 11:04 AM
lots of good replies here. um, yeah on the 60 feet. i will help you out on the gun: CZ P-01 it is 9mm (cheaper to shoot, commonly availible, used by various militaries around the world), compact for concealed carry and shoots like a full gun and holds 14 rounds in free states.

http://www.cz-usa.com/product_detail.php?id=28
http://www.gunsandammomag.com/ga_handguns/cz_0620
http://www.handgunsmag.com/featured_handguns/hg_czusa_200803
http://www.cz-usa.com/media_releases.php?m=4&msgid=37
http://www.genitron.com/REV-CZ-P01/CZ-P01.html

eijjie33
03-06-2009, 11:07 AM
i own sig p228,hk 9mm usp and beretta 9mm cougar.of all three guns i'm most proficient with my sig shooting 60'.although like what they have said most shootings happen within a few feet.

zenbubu
03-06-2009, 11:09 AM
My first pistol was a Glock 17. It's easy to find extras parts for and it seems to shoot no matter what.

movie zombie
03-06-2009, 11:30 AM
I think it is rare for a civilian to fire self defense shots with a handgun at 60 feet. You would only fire with legal justification if your life were in immediate danger. How would a person 60 feet away be threatening your life? He would have to be shooting at you from that distance. Nobody with a knife or club could really threaten you effectively at 60 feet.

I would worry more about somebody threatening my life from 10 feet away, or less.

:thumbsup:

mz

Greg-Dawg
03-06-2009, 11:56 AM
Take a class first before you do anything.

Desert Rat
03-06-2009, 12:42 PM
.......................... If you start firing at 60 feet at a human with the intent of breaking his skull, rest assured, when all the smoke clears, you will more than likely be spooning with Bubba in the Graybar Hotel, wishing it were you that took the round to the skull.

I think it is rare for a civilian to fire self defense shots with a handgun at 60 feet. You would only fire with legal justification if your life were in immediate danger. How would a person 60 feet away be threatening your life? He would have to be shooting at you from that distance. Nobody with a knife or club could really threaten you effectively at 60 feet.

I would worry more about somebody threatening my life from 10 feet away, or less.

j1133s
03-06-2009, 3:19 PM
Hi,
I'm about to get my first handgun, I just have no idea what brand/model. I do know my preferences, so please consider these before suggesting:
- legal
- I need it for self/others' defense against humans
- I need it for 20 meter (60 ft) shots
- needs to have little enough recoil/muzzle jump to allow for accurate 2nd shot
- ammo for it has to be available "everywhere"
- I'm not reloading
- working, no matter what
- very accurate over the above distance

What do you say?

Legal is easy, any pistol you can buy in a store is going to be legal.

Ok, good, you want to hurt people easily, so that limits you to center fires.

Good group at 20 m means how big? I did some testing w/ my HD pistols a while back and they give < 3" groups at 25 yards. I'm not good at shooting pistols off a rest. These are just plain old off the shelf combat pistols.

I actually find that I shoot the 9mm and .40sw cartridges quicker than the .45acp. The front sight goes up and back down quickly allows nice follow up shots.

9mm, 40sw, and 45acp are everywhere.

Good for you, I hate reloading too.

HKs will work if you take their slide stops out, Glocks won't work if they aren't fully assembled. Nothing will work if you don't put in their barrels.

"Very accurate" means different things to people. what's your definition? 3" at 20m? then anything will do. 0.5" at 20m? then very few can.

Goodluck buying your first pistol. Remember, the gun is only a tool, you'll have to put in some learning time to allow it to hit things.

Dark&Good
03-06-2009, 3:28 PM
The 60 ft is not a general or random idea, guys; it's not the "intended" or "likely" range. It's the MAXIMUM distance I'm looking at, in the particular place where I might need to use the handgun. Sorry, English is my second language.
Obviously, headshots at 60 ft are not my best scenario, but has to be counted with. A kid might be taken hostage, for example, held by a BG pointing his gun at a grown-up.

Thank you for your advices, I'm looking at the guns you suggested right now.

(I didn't mention the training since I'm perfectly clear on it's importance; I only ask what I don't know)

Dark&Good
03-06-2009, 3:34 PM
"Very accurate" means different things to people. what's your definition? 3" at 20m? then anything will do. 0.5" at 20m? then very few can.



Yeah, more like 2"-2.5" at 20m.

j1133s
03-06-2009, 4:07 PM
I've actually tested my pistols at 25 yards and get < 3" groups. This was a few years back, but I think I was able to get 2" w/ my HK USPc 9mm shooting the winchester black talon 124gr +P, and that was my best group off a sandbag rest. The pistols I shot were HK USPc, Glock 19, and Sig P229. I was trying out different defensive ammo for function and accuracy.

FYI: I think your scenario of head shot is not realistic because if you are concerned about the hostage, then you wouldn't shoot the BG w/ a pistol. (I'm not saying you're wrong in your thinking, just that I've shot pistols for a few years and you're looking to buy your first.) Pistols are hard to shoot and your accuracy is going to suffer under pressure, so that head shot at 20 meters is going to be hard. (Also, just the head isn't good enough, you want to cut the spine or hit the brains, even smaller target.)

Dark&Good
03-06-2009, 4:25 PM
Anybody knows the Bersa .380 or the Bersa 9mm?

Sobriquet
03-06-2009, 5:48 PM
Anybody knows the Bersa .380 or the Bersa 9mm?

I've personally never heard of a Bersa, but you don't want anything smaller than 9mm for self-defense.

comandante costello
03-06-2009, 5:56 PM
Obviously, headshots at 60 ft are not my best scenario, but has to be counted with. A kid might be taken hostage, for example, held by a BG pointing his gun at a grown-up.


:wacko:

hellraiser
03-06-2009, 6:46 PM
My first pistol was a Glock 17. It's easy to find extras parts for and it seems to shoot no matter what.

i agree!!! and the only place that seems to ever run out of 9mm is wallymart...or gun shows were people buy 10 cases at a time....

Danield
03-06-2009, 6:57 PM
Obviously, headshots at 60 ft are not my best scenario, but has to be counted with. A kid might be taken hostage, for example, held by a BG pointing his gun at a grown-up.



I'm not sure I like where this is going? Are you planning on taking a hostage or being in a situation with hostages? Are you planning on being a cop? I'm confused.

Dark&Good
03-06-2009, 6:58 PM
LOL

I'm a teacher at a school.

Danield
03-06-2009, 7:03 PM
LOL

I'm a teacher at a school.

And you are going to be allowed to have a gun on school property?

j1133s
03-06-2009, 7:20 PM
Definitely don't get the .380acp because it doesn't meet many of your criteria: ammo everywhere, stopping power, accuracy (lack of decent ammo).

I don't know about Beras, so I can't tell you if it'll meet your criteria. But I looked at their web site and frankly don't think it'll meet your criterias.

If price is important, you should look into Rugers, although I've never owned or fired one, I have friends who say they are reliable.

Another advise for you: in order for you to shoot decent, you'll probably have to spend $1000 in ammo, maybe training, and range time. It'll make the price of almost any pistol look cheap, so dont limit yourself to the Beras.

Also remember schools are gun free zones, so you may not be able to have a gun there. I.e. make sure you can use it beofre buying.

Zervaman
03-06-2009, 7:37 PM
According to your criteria for ammo which will be available everywhere, I'd highly suggest a 9mm. Also, 9mm hollow points will be effective man stoppers.

I'd suggest a glock 17 or a glock 19. Go for the G17 if you don't have a need to conceal the handgun, the larger size will have a larger sight radius and will negate recoil more effectively than the G19. If you do plan on concealing the gun, go for the G19.

Also, I'd suggest spending the extra $$$ for night sights.

hamster
03-06-2009, 7:46 PM
Sig P229 in 9mm!

slvrbulit12
03-06-2009, 8:08 PM
My first handgun was a Smith & Wesson 4" revolver model 15, 38. Ammo was cheap and I have fired thousands of rounds through this gun over the years. I still reach for this gun when things go bump in the night. I also have a Browning hi-power and a Sig 228 but I have more practice with the revolver so I feel more confident with my ability to hit what I shoot at.
Good luck with what ever you decide.

Sam
03-06-2009, 9:23 PM
a headshot at 20m against a criminal with a hostage under pressure seems like a tough shot to me.

Dark&Good
03-06-2009, 10:01 PM
And you are going to be allowed to have a gun on school property?

I have another thread already in which we can discuss the legalities. Check the 2A section.

Dark&Good
03-06-2009, 10:02 PM
a headshot at 20m against a criminal with a hostage under pressure seems like a tough shot to me.

To me, too.

kermit
03-07-2009, 4:27 PM
Given your stated use, I would suggest the Sig or Glock 9 mm rather than the Bersa. IMHO, while they are more expensive, they would provide better reliability, accuracy, and durability compared to the Bersa and you will want to put in a lot of range time if you are considering headshots, under stress, at 20 meters. If possible, rent a few and see which you prefer.

Danield
03-08-2009, 9:20 AM
I have another thread already in which we can discuss the legalities. Check the 2A section.

I have no interest in reading your other thread. But it seems a bit crazy to be asking about buying your first handgun and making a 60 foot headshot, under pressure. If you already don't own a handgun and haven't shot one much, I wouldn't expect you to hit a car at 60 feet under pressure, with a gun pointed at you. But if you do want to be a civilian dirty harry, I'd say get a glock.

Dark&Good
03-08-2009, 2:22 PM
Well, thanks for the +1 for a Glock.
If you have interest reading this thread, read it carefully, plz.
I do practice with handguns, as stated in post #4 here.

tortoisethunder
03-08-2009, 2:50 PM
Rent first! Shoot different types first. If you really want to just go and buy, I would recomment a revolver in 357 caliber, and shoot 38 specials thru it, load it with 38 +p or 357 mag for personal defense. By the way get a 4" barrel,

S&W model 686 plus lets you have 7 rounds...not bad, cheap to shoot, accurate, reasonably priced.

Dark&Good
03-08-2009, 2:53 PM
I scheduled a visit to Jackson Arms, gonna rent a few there ;)

tortoisethunder
03-08-2009, 2:56 PM
I scheduled a visit to Jackson Arms, gonna rent a few there ;)

Perfect...you will then know after shooting which felt the most comfortable. Good luck and have a good time.

Dark&Good
03-08-2009, 3:09 PM
Thank you :)

TMILLS
03-08-2009, 3:28 PM
You can't go wrong with a SIG or a Glock.........9mm isn't as easy to come by these day's.......I would say Glock 17 or 19 (9mm) or a Sig P226 or P229 (9mm). From what you stated, I would go with the Glock 19. Just because of price, but if you have the cash I would go for the Sig P226.....one of the best platforms for a great out of box shooter!!! :thumbsup:

beerup949
03-08-2009, 3:42 PM
Anthing H&K you will pay close to $1,000 for any one of their models with tax and DROS but they are well worth it. Look 'em up. SIG's would be my second choice and then for classic style (1911) I would go for a Kimber.

I don't think anyone would disagree. :)

Fobjoe
03-08-2009, 3:53 PM
Anthing H&K you will pay close to $1,000 for any one of their models with tax and DROS but they are well worth it. Look 'em up. SIG's would be my second choice and then for classic style (1911) I would go for a Kimber.

I don't think anyone would disagree. :)

I choose to disagree :) bought my hk usp 9mm for $400 last year (from a crackhead...long story). I couldn't stand the mushy SA trigger or blocky grip so I traded it for a gun that I sold for $600, which I in turn used towards my Sig p229. Better trigger, slimmer grip, marginally lower bore axis, don't have to worry about depressing the safety while firing, and 3 barrel conversions for 9mm, .357 sig, and .40sw. GO SIG

Kid Stanislaus
03-08-2009, 4:19 PM
.........working, no matter what
- very accurate over the above distance.


You're look'n for a 38 spec. revolver.

Kid Stanislaus
03-08-2009, 4:23 PM
For your very first, if you intend on using it for self defense, I would recommend a .357 mag. revolver, probably 4" barrel minimum.

He expressed concern about accurate follow up shots.

1lostinspace
03-08-2009, 4:29 PM
Glock 19 you know you want one. Trust me you ll thank me later.

Kid Stanislaus
03-08-2009, 4:31 PM
Glock 19 you know you want one. Trust me you ll thank me later.


One person's stepping stone is another person's stumbling block.

Dark&Good
03-08-2009, 4:38 PM
Well, no problem, as long as everybody keeps cool and posts facts and inoffensive private opinions :D
The list isn't very long, so I'm going with it to Jackson Arms for personal evaluation.

1lostinspace
03-08-2009, 4:45 PM
Well, no problem, as long as everybody keeps cool and posts facts and inoffensive private opinions :D
The list isn't very long, so I'm going with it to Jackson Arms for personal evaluation.


Your right look at this and stop listening to private opinions
http://theprepared.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=90&Itemid=1

then check this site out
http://www.theprepared.com/

Dark&Good
03-08-2009, 4:58 PM
Your right look at this and stop listening to private opinions
[

Why would I stop listening to them? I like them :)

Thanks for the links, I'm checking them out :D

dgey
03-08-2009, 4:59 PM
Really accurate doesn't mean anything when you are in a situation that requires a gun. You're so juiced up with adrenaline that 50% of what you think you can shoot is all you'll be able to do... follow up shots mean nothing... to do what you want to do will require lots of training..., I mean many hours of training and more training after that. Most people on this board believe that they have the skill set needed to survive a gun fight. They're all wrong. Only the LEO's and military personell really have adequate training, and alot of the time they don't..., and or the few that can afford the classes for this type of training. Classes, training, and practice and you may be one of the lucky few... starting to get the picture...?

Dark&Good
03-08-2009, 5:07 PM
Sure, thank you.
I still have to do my best if such situations arise at this school, and I will. Right know, the best I can do is 1) get a gun, 2) train continually.

1lostinspace
03-08-2009, 5:07 PM
Really accurate doesn't mean anything when you are in a situation that requires a gun. You're so juiced up with adrenaline that 50% of what you think you can shoot is all you'll be able to do... follow up shots mean nothing... to do what you want to do will require lots of training..., I mean many hours of training and more training after that. Most people on this board believe that they have the skill set needed to survive a gun fight. They're all wrong. Only the LEO's and military personell really have adequate training, and alot of the time they don't..., and or the few that can afford the classes for this type of training. Classes, training, and practice and you may be one of the lucky few... starting to get the picture...?

he is right you need to practice both hands, point shooting, laying down, even shooting as fast as you can 4 feet away simulated jams and so on.

Joe
03-08-2009, 6:09 PM
glock 17/19 imo

Seed
03-08-2009, 7:16 PM
S&W 686 357 7 shot revolver with 38s and 4" barrel. I don't find the magnums to offer that much kick in this medium frame beauty either.







It's not like I have one or anything.

GrinderCB
03-08-2009, 9:50 PM
I'll throw my 2-cents into this one since I recently asked many of the same questions.

First, my personal preference is .40 S&W as it kicks only negligibly more than 9mm and ammo is much easier to find. Second, choose the specific gun based on comfort in the hand. Lack of comfort will translate into awkwardness when shooting and lead to missing more than hitting. Next, make sure you're comfortable operating the mechanism. You should be able to load a clip and cycle a semi-auto's slide or pop and load a revolver's cylinder easily. Finally, do a little online research before purchasing. I Google'd the model of what I was considering and the word "review" and usually find loads of helpful info. You might find a magazine review or a forum thread discussing a gun you're considering that contains trivia like reliability, or feed problems, etc.

Good luck with the search.

Sam
03-08-2009, 9:54 PM
Only the LEO's and military personell really have adequate training

and many LEOs only dust off the pistol for quals every year.

getback
03-09-2009, 1:28 AM
I choose to disagree :) bought my hk usp 9mm for $400 last year (from a crackhead...long story). I couldn't stand the mushy SA trigger or blocky grip so I traded it for a gun that I sold for $600, which I in turn used towards my Sig p229. Better trigger, slimmer grip, marginally lower bore axis, don't have to worry about depressing the safety while firing, and 3 barrel conversions for 9mm, .357 sig, and .40sw. GO SIG

HK will give you quality, reliability and accuracy for a price, unless buying from a crackhead... The USP is pretty uncomfortable to grip but the trigger is much improved on the USP Expert. The grip has been improved on the HK45, P30 and P2000. And if you don't want a safety, you don't have to have one with all the variants available including LEM. Unfortunately, the HK45 and P30 are not on the CA list. And the excellent triggers, grips, lower bore axis, and safety or lack thereof of the P7M8 and P9S Target are no longer made.

I own a USP, Expert, HK45, P7M8 and P9S. The USP is my least favorite. The DA/SA on the Expert is great. HK45 is very comfortable to hold. P7M8 with Nill thumbrest grip is probably the best of all for comfort, safety, consistent trigger. But the best SA is the P9S Target with trigger stop.

I don't think a service type Sig (non-P210) could surpass any of those HK's in accuracy especially since the Expert can be a competition gun and the P7 and P9 have fixed barrels. That said, my home defense gun is a Sig Sauer P6 with night sights and a new Bar Sto barrel because it's easy to point and operate, reliable and cost much less than any HK I own. It wouldn't bother me if anything happened to it which I can't say about an HK.

ScottyBear
03-09-2009, 2:44 AM
What about that new Ruger SR9? Looks nice, tactical flashlight rail (nice for home defense), has safety features, and can be had new for under $500

Dark&Good
03-09-2009, 11:19 AM
What about that new Ruger SR9? Looks nice, tactical flashlight rail (nice for home defense), has safety features, and can be had new for under $500

I came across it, too - looks like a possibility... I hope Jackson Arms will have a wide variety of 9mm-s.

radioburning
03-09-2009, 2:17 PM
I recently shot the Bersa .380. In my opinion, even though the .380 round is a weaker round than 9mm, the Bersa seemed to kick more than my Sig in 9mm. Stick with the 9mm or above. Besides, 9mm is cheaper and way more abundant than .380.

RIA and High Standard make .45acp 1911's in the $500 range. Every gun enthusiast should have a 1911.

tortoisethunder
03-09-2009, 2:18 PM
What about that new Ruger SR9? Looks nice, tactical flashlight rail (nice for home defense), has safety features, and can be had new for under $500

Just be careful when selecting this handgun, pay attention to the trigger feel. Some people hate the trigger, I have heard Ruger improved the trigger recently, but make sure this trigger is good for you...I am not trying to talk you out of it at all, I have felt this trigger and it would need alot of getting used to on my part.

The Wingnut
03-09-2009, 2:51 PM
I'm going to throw my hat into the ring with the .357 revolver crowd. If this is your first handgun and you want something accurate, reliable and right at the $600 mark, a compact .357 will do the job perfectly. A revolver doesn't jam, will feed just about any type of cartridge / bullet profile, and .357 and .38 is pretty easy to find and relatively inexpensive. I love the idea of being able to run .38 wadcutters for practice through the same firearm that will blast out full house .357. Power and economy in the same package.

Have a look at the S&W model 60 and related variants. I personally want a model 19 with a 2 1/2" barrel. The 60 is the same weapon in stainless.

I'll agree wholeheartedly that no firearms enthusiast should go through life without at least one 1911. It's probably the most tried and tested pistol design in existence.

Dark&Good
03-09-2009, 7:01 PM
Thank you.

How about a Ruger P95? Anybody owns/shot one?

Haplo
03-09-2009, 8:00 PM
Just get something you can afford to practice with regularly. A .357 magnum won't do you any good if you can't afford to buy ammo to practice with. You have to be able to "hit" the target, that takes practice, which takes ammo, which costs money. Lets say get whatever you can afford to shoot at least 100rds every weekend with some instruction to guide you.

rtlltj
03-09-2009, 8:34 PM
Glock 19, its easy, simple, and cheap.

Dark&Good
03-09-2009, 9:50 PM
Also looking at FNP-9...

dilligaffrn
03-10-2009, 10:14 AM
Did someone say GLOCK 17 yet...

LOL

bombadillo
03-10-2009, 10:31 AM
Under 600 bucks, I'd say a springfield xd-9 or xd-40 would work and allow for "quick" follow up shots. .45 anything really compact starts to work against you for follow up shots. If its for everyday CC go subcompact either glock or XD would suit you fine. Kahr CW9/PM9 would do fine if you could get a used one. Love my Ruger P345D if you want a more full sized feeling gun in .45. Other than that, just go down to a rental place and shoot a few and see what you think. 60 feet is a freaking long distance to threaten somebodies life at.

Dark&Good
03-21-2009, 1:26 AM
All right, a week from now I'm trying out a few more handguns. I shot a .45 last weekend for the first time. It wasn't an awful experience :D although I need lots of practice - I put 14 out of 15 bullets in a 6" diameter circle, pretty evenly, at 10 yards. But the recoil wasn't annoying at all.
I was told that a .357 revolver will recoil significantly more than a 9mm, what is your experience with that?

tortoisethunder
03-21-2009, 2:29 AM
All right, a week from now I'm trying out a few more handguns. I shot a .45 last weekend for the first time. It wasn't an awful experience :D although I need lots of practice - I put 14 out of 15 bullets in a 6" diameter circle, pretty evenly, at 10 yards. But the recoil wasn't annoying at all.
I was told that a .357 revolver will recoil significantly more than a 9mm, what is your experience with that?

In no way does a 357 magnum "significantly" have more recoil than a 9mm imo. A medium/large frame steel revolver (not alloys) with a 4" barrel with have roughly the same recoil as a polymer framed medium 9mm. Plus for self defense some load their 357's with 38 +p's. Shoot both the 357 magnum revolver with 357's and 38's then shoot a medium polymer 9mm. I bet you shoot the revolver more accurately and have a little more control for follow-ups. To each is own. You are going down the right path by trying first.

drummerchris
03-21-2009, 8:55 PM
My first gun... Sig P226 in 9mm. Don't really need much more than that. Maybe .40 caliber?