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.40Cal
01-04-2010, 4:11 PM
I'm looking to get my first handgun. I have shot quite a few 9mm - 45. But not owned one yet.

I would like to know what you guys think I should get, and I'm not looking to buy more and more handguns down the line (as some people might suggest).

I would mainly use it at the range for target practice, and also being my "only" handgun, keep it for home/self defense. I'm considering a 9mm due to cheap practice ammo, and hi-cap mags available. But am also debating .40 cal, given a little more stopping power for self/home defense. I can't make up my mind... So, what's it gonna be, and Why? Plz help.

Also, if you can suggest some guns as well. (Budget: around $700 +/- a couple).

Thanks in advance... :)

sker13
01-04-2010, 4:22 PM
Too many choices. I would buy a 1911 .45 because I like the way they shoot and no one ever said that a .45 was lacking in the knock down dept. However, I think a Glock 19 (9mm) is pretty much what you need. Used for around 450.00 use the rest to buy ammo and training. My 2 cents! My first was a G27 but I planned on carry.

Fjold
01-04-2010, 4:25 PM
I'm looking to get my first handgun. I have shot quite a few 9mm - 45. But not owned one yet.

I would like to know what you guys think I should get, and I'm not looking to buy more and more handguns down the line (as some people might suggest).

I would mainly use it at the range for target practice, and also being my "only" handgun, keep it for home/self defense. I'm considering a 9mm due to cheap practice ammo, and hi-cap mags available. But am also debating .40 cal, given a little more stopping power for self/home defense. I can't make up my mind... So, what's it gonna be, and Why? Plz help.

Also, if you can suggest some guns as well. (Budget: around $700 +/- a couple).

Thanks in advance... :)

There are no hi-caps (sic) available. If you don't already own high capacity magazines that you bought before the State ban went into effect then you cannot have any.

rgs1975
01-04-2010, 4:25 PM
High cap mags are not a consideration since you live in Hayward. CA law says you can only have 10 round mags at most unless you're a LEO. I don't think you're a LEO because you said you don't already own a handgun. 10 round mags are available for most popular guns in 9mm, .40S&W and .45ACP.

tbhracing
01-04-2010, 4:26 PM
If I had to buy only one handgun for home and self defense, it would be the GLOCK 19, hands down. Its right right size, great for travel, carry, low maintenance, reliable and 9mm has all the stopping power you'll need.

Bobotheclown
01-04-2010, 4:31 PM
If you're looking for a compact, I like both my g19 and p228. The g19 is cheaper new.

blikeandy
01-04-2010, 4:49 PM
U can get a glock 19 or for some more money u can get
a sig p229 in 40 or 9mm both are great firearms

RedFord150
01-04-2010, 4:54 PM
9mm is cheaper to shoot, less recoil, and plenty of good defensive ammo.

Glock 17, 19, or 34.
Springfield XD9.
CZ 75 models.
Beretta 96
Ruger P Series.
S&W M&P and Sigma Series
are all worth a look.

Go to a range and rent several or borrow some. Who knows which one you'll like the best.

Good luck.

bobnfloyd
01-04-2010, 4:55 PM
I would suggest a P226 or P229 in 40. This caliber and gun gives you the flexibility when you get the next gun bug to buy other barrels to give you 4 guns in one. Sig has OEM 357 Sig, and .22 LR for the gun, and you can get a Bar Sto conversion to get a 9mm for cheaper range ammo.

However, for the price of the .22 conversion you are close to the price of a Browning Buckmark and Ruger Mark III .22 pistol.

.40Cal
01-04-2010, 6:28 PM
9mm is cheaper to shoot, less recoil, and plenty of good defensive ammo.
Good luck.

Yeah, that's the reason I'm considering 9mm (cheaper to shoot/practice, and less recoil). However, I'm a little concerned about the "defensive" ammo. Since, I've read the 'def' ammo has high presure and increases the blast. With .40cal you get a lot energy for home 'def'. Then again, how often does one really need to shoot a burglar? It's just a safety precaution, or sense of security...

I would suggest a P226 or P229 in 40. This caliber and gun gives you the flexibility when you get the next gun bug to buy other barrels to give you 4 guns in one. Sig has OEM 357 Sig, and .22 LR for the gun, and you can get a Bar Sto conversion to get a 9mm for cheaper range ammo.

However, for the price of the .22 conversion you are close to the price of a Browning Buckmark and Ruger Mark III .22 pistol.

If I get a Sig, I will be getting the .22 conversion kit right away. Infact, I saw on Gunbroker.com a 226 in .22 WITH a 9mm kit. I know it sounds like I'm talking backwards, but it's true. They're selling .22 with 226 frame, and offer the X-change conversion in 9mm/.40 (your choice) for around $878 (both). If they were offering it backwards (like it should be, I'd jump on it).

.............. still the debate is going in my mind about WHICH caliber to go with......... But not interested in any plastic guns (Glocks, XD's, etc). I know there are die-hard fans of these guns, but it My personal choice to go with all metal gun (as mention in original post).

Thanks guys.. plz keep it coming... and if anyone wants to sell a gun, they may contact me too...

P.S: Also interested in a fully-built AR Calif. legal.

thegrayham
01-04-2010, 6:37 PM
I would be weary of admitting to that on this forum or anywhere on the internet. If you did not know:
(a)Any person in this state who does any of the following is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or in the state prison:
(2)Commencing January 1, 2000, manufactures or causes to be manufactured, imports into the state, keeps for sale, or offers or exposes for sale, or who gives, or lends, any large-capacity magazine.
(CAL. PEN. CODE 12020)

So while your possession of the magazine would be fine I, like I said would not post that here.

Now to answer your original question: I do enjoy 9mm because its cheap but seeing all those boxes of .40 on the shelf it does make me want one of those too. And how can you go wrong with a .45 1911.

buffybuster
01-04-2010, 6:44 PM
Possibly something in .40cal......

Ironic that your username is .40cal and you don't have a handgun.....

There are many choices, dependent on your needs and application. Go and handle as many as you can to find what feels best for you. Stick to a major manufacturer and take any salesperson's advice with a grain of salt.

Dubels
01-04-2010, 6:46 PM
Hi-Cap mag are illegal to transfer or sell in California. Rebuild kits are a different story though. But if the gun was produced after 2000 it is pretty much illegal to have any hi-caps unless your a leo. There is a thread on this forum regarding the legality of "hi-cap" mags.

I am in the same shoes right now. With the GSSF discount the G19 is only 398+ all the fees. I am most likely going to go with the G19 over its bigger caliber cousins. Like many have said there are plenty of defense ammo in 9mm and it is cheaper to learn to be effective with it. As for 9mm which guns have you taken a look at? All metal guns Sigs, 92fs, 1911s are a few that are really reliable but are all over the price range. What price range are you looking at?

Glocks have .22 conversion kits too. Advantage Arms sells the best ones for glocks but from what I have gathered is that they change the weight of the gun and at $250 a kit when you can get them you are almost better off getting a used Ruger MKII. I don't know how much the Sig kit cost but it might just be more cost effective to go with a dedicated 22 plinker, unless you are determined to train with the 22 in the Sig frame. But if you do get a 22 conversion kit, all you are really going to learn is how to be effective with controls. As the 22 will have less kick and wont react like a 9mm while firing. So you can actually learn everything you can from a 22 conversion kit just doing drills without ammo, just wont be as fun.

PS: There are plenty of decent CA legal ARs in the sale forum right now. Ranging form high $700s to 2000.

Twinkies
01-04-2010, 6:56 PM
I would suggest a P226 or P229 in 40. This caliber and gun gives you the flexibility when you get the next gun bug to buy other barrels to give you 4 guns in one. Sig has OEM 357 Sig, and .22 LR for the gun, and you can get a Bar Sto conversion to get a 9mm for cheaper range ammo.

However, for the price of the .22 conversion you are close to the price of a Browning Buckmark and Ruger Mark III .22 pistol.

I'll 3rd this suggestion.. if you want just one handgun.. and can afford it, the Sig is a great choice. Live up to your screen name and get the .40

Colt-45
01-04-2010, 7:59 PM
Ok, back to the MAIN TOPIC OF HIS POST......

Since you plan on only buying 1 gun get a Beretta 92fs or Glock 19 if you want a real light gun. 9mm is a good idea because of the price of ammo and low recoil, I'm not a 9mm guy however I recognize it's a good caliber. The difference between 9mm and 40sw for you could be the fact of shooting more often and more sounds each time, depending on your economic status of course. If money isn't an issue, choose the more expensive 40 cal on a Sig gun.

Go to a gun range where they rent guns and try a 40sw Sig, a Glock 19 and and a Beretta 92fs

ELEVENTH HOUR
01-04-2010, 8:28 PM
My vote is for the 1911.....

The most beautiful delivery system for 230 Grains of lead.

.40Cal
01-04-2010, 8:31 PM
Brands wise, I'm considering: Sig226, Browing Hi Power, CZ 75 series, 92FS ( is a maybe due to large grips). Not interested in any Plastic type guns (Glocks, Sigma, S&W, HK, etc).

Seconly, considering Caliber. And SA or DA/SA...

Hollow Grind
01-04-2010, 8:57 PM
I was in the same boat you are two months ago. I ended up getting a CZ P-01, a compact 9mm in the 75 family with an alloy frame. Great ergonomics, built tough and accurate. I've put eight hundred rounds through it since I got it two months ago and have zero regrets. Your results may vary.

5ohguy
01-04-2010, 9:19 PM
9mm has plenty of stopping power if you get some good defensive rounds. You can shoot for a lot less. If you're looking for a metallic gun, check out Sig. They make great guns.

I personally love 1911s. When I shoot any other handgun they just aren't as fun. I'm not sure why.

.40Cal
01-05-2010, 3:58 AM
9mm has plenty of stopping power if you get some good defensive rounds. You can shoot for a lot less. If you're looking for a metallic gun, check out Sig. They make great guns.

I personally love 1911s. When I shoot any other handgun they just aren't as fun. I'm not sure why.

I would like to know that - why? I know there are a lot of die hard fans of 1911's. I love the way they look and feel. But have 2 questions about them.

1. They are usually Single-action (SA). For Home/self defense: One you got a round chambered, hammer pulled all the way back... they are "ready to shoot" at the lightest touch. If you leave the hammer DOWN, then they're NOT ready to shoot at all... meaning you'd HAVE to PULL/Cock the hammer back (in any SA) to make it fire... hence loosing time, or if you mind gets clouded, you may forget to even PULL the hammer back.. and pulling hard on trigger won't do anything...if you NEED to shoot a burglar in a hurry (to save your life). That's why I am leaning towards DA/SA type guns, where you can chamber a round, decock it into a DA mode......then decide if you REALLY NEED to fire! If no, you can keep the gun back or unload it because it's still safe. And if you NEED to shoot in a hurry, just start pulling on the trigger.... This is of course, my opinion.. that's why I'm here to learn and ask questions....

2. .45 Ammo prices would be higher I assume compared to 9mm or .40 I guess. Also, limited to 8 round Mags... (IMHO)... Also, the recoil might be a little factor - not that it matters much.


Now, back to the original delima.... :eek:

kduly
01-05-2010, 6:01 AM
I would suggest a P226 or P229 in 40. This caliber and gun gives you the flexibility when you get the next gun bug to buy other barrels to give you 4 guns in one. Sig has OEM 357 Sig, and .22 LR for the gun, and you can get a Bar Sto conversion to get a 9mm for cheaper range ammo.

However, for the price of the .22 conversion you are close to the price of a Browning Buckmark and Ruger Mark III .22 pistol.

+1 This guy has a P229 OEM factory 357 barrel for $50. I got one and it looked brand new.
http://sigforum.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/350601935/m/653101052
9mm also has excellent/proven stopping power especially with today's HD ammo. IMHO, can't beat a Sig.

9mm has plenty of stopping power if you get some good defensive rounds. You can shoot for a lot less. If you're looking for a metallic gun, check out Sig. They make great guns.


+1.

Glock21sfsd
01-05-2010, 6:23 AM
I have a Glock 21 SF(.45) and I love it

DDG
01-05-2010, 6:45 AM
Get a 22, 40, 45 357 38 special or anything else. Don’t get a 9mm. That will leave one less person buying 9mm ammo, resulting in more for me (it’s that simple, right?).

Really, go to ranges that rent guns. Try several different makes, models and calibers. There are a bunch of great guns out there. Find one that feels good to you. Once you have narrowed down your selection, you can ask about specific models to see if there are any issues or concerns regarding reliability, ect.

ALSystems
01-05-2010, 6:53 AM
Brands wise, I'm considering: Sig226, Browing Hi Power, CZ 75 series, 92FS ( is a maybe due to large grips). Not interested in any Plastic type guns (Glocks, Sigma, S&W, HK, etc).

Secondly, considering Caliber. And SA or DA/SA...
You've got good taste in handguns. :D I never liked the Plastic guns either. I have experience with all of them except the CZ.

My personal ranking would be:
Sig 226
92FS
Browning Hi Power

sker13
01-05-2010, 7:14 AM
Cocked and locked is what is great about 1911's. It seems like you have your mind made up so why do you need affirmation

Carpenter 409
01-05-2010, 7:33 AM
I love my Glocks, I have 3 all different calibers.

What I would say to you is get what you can hit the target with. It shouldn't matter if it's a .22 or a .50AE get what fits your hand and is comfortable. A hand gun should be an extension of your body which mean it should take little time acquiring the target. Pointability means a lot and will make shooting and learning easier.
For me I really don't like to shoot Sigs they don't fit me right, they are great handguns but don't work for me. I really like 1911 pistols but I would not recommend this as a first time firearm. I would also recommend taking a firearms class like basic pistol before you purchase this will give you loads of useful knowledge.

There is a lot out there just shoot as much as you can and see what you do the best with then go from there.

Hope this helps

Black Majik
01-05-2010, 8:31 AM
Picking a gun is very subjective. Everyone's going to recommend the guns they own or shoot.

We'll start out with picking a caliber. The three main calibers to choose are 9mm, .40S&W or .45ACP. Each become more expensive respectively. Each also have more recoil respectively. Starting out, no matter how easy the larger calibers seem to be to shoot, one must not fall into the "bigger is better" mentality. Nine millimeter is perfectly fine for defensive situations, especially when only hits matter.

The biggest advantages of picking a 9mm is the shorter learning curve and cost of ammo. Bad habits are easier to pick up with larger calibers no matter whether you feel they're easy to shoot or not. Anticipation of recoil will ruin or destroy your groups. I would say, currently, the only disadvantage right now is how tough it can be to find ammo at B&M shops, but it's possible.

The choices your listed are great. I noticed you inquired about DA/SA or SAO in a different thread. My suggestion would be to rent various models to try, and use them as they're intended. Meaning, if you pick a P226R to try out, shoot it DA/SA and not just SAO without decocking it. See whether or not you can get used to the DA to SA transition.

Once you figure out what type of action works for you, stick with it and become proficient with it. As such, I cannot shoot DA/SA to save my life anymore. I'll always fumble on a draw with a DA/SA looking for a non-existent safety to snick off.

Good luck, that first gun is always the most memorable.

coop44
01-05-2010, 9:20 AM
"I like this" "I like that"
It's like asking us which girl to marry.
pick one that works for you,(and she's gotta be pretty).
If, down the road she doesn't work out, divorce her and try another.

BTW get some decent instruction, BEFORE you buy