A revolver for a real mother.


April 16, 2009, 04:19 AM
My mother has filed all the proper paper work with our local police department and is now ready to purchase her first firearm. A pistol for self-defense.

The fact that her hands are too weak to operate the action on my Glock 30 has lead me to believe that a revolver is the only way to go. First and foremost, the gun has to be simple and easy to handle. Everyone I've spoken to in regards to this has said a .38 special is the way to go.

I just want it to be easy for her to make a big enough hole in anyone who would try and defile my mother. Thoughts? Suggestions?

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April 16, 2009, 05:02 AM
Assuming you don't wish to conceal it on your person, you may wish to consider a used S&W Model 10, which can often be had on the cheap. They're 100% reliable, easy as any to operate, and have very nice DA trigger pulls; at least in my experience. I'd avoid snubbies and diminutive DA autoloaders like the Ruger and Kel-Tecs, as they are quite a handful with recoil and sometimes trigger pull for weak hands. If you can find a gun dealer that will allow you to dry-fire a sampling of models, all the better.

The very best thing you can give your mom, however, is defensive training, not just the requisite concealed carry course or punching holes in paper.

Good luck to you, sir.

April 16, 2009, 05:09 AM
I bought my Mother and my daughter 38 Special revolvers. Keep it simple. A fixed sight 5 shot Smith J frame or a Rossi 68 with a 3" or 4" barrel should be fine. (note- I did not say just any Rossi, I said a 68)
Any auto can jam, and you better be able to clear a jam if you are going to shoot one. Most decent revolvers are good for at least one cylinder full.

April 16, 2009, 05:09 AM
Doesn't Berretta still make some tip up barrel models? That might be a good choice for weak hands, with less recoil than a comparable revolver. Just a thought.

April 16, 2009, 07:28 AM
"My wife can't always rack the slide, so even though she wants a semi-auto, I am going to insist she gets a revolver."

"I like my revolver okay, but I'd sure like to try a semi-auto. Problem is, I can't pull the slide back."

"I can almost pull the slide back, but not far enough to lock it open."

"I'm not strong enough to do the slide ..."

If I had a nickel for every time I have heard variations on that theme, I'd be a wealthy woman today. Despite this, it is my contention that healthy adult women who really-and-truly cannot be taught to rack a slide are very, very, very rare. I'm almost tempted to say there are none at all.

A lot of men who have shot for years have never learned how to rack a slide without using a lot of muscle. They have not learned the easiest techniques, because they haven't needed to. As a result, when these men become informal instructors for their female loved ones, they don't know what to do if a woman can't just muscle the slide back in the same inefficient way many men do. Soon these men become convinced that "Women just can't ..." And their female loved ones buy the lie, thinking of themselves as too weak to run a modern firearm.
(bold mine)

I'd suggest a visit to www.corneredcat.com before proceeding too far along this "pick one for mom" path.

Also, I suspect that many of us forget that a snub-nosed "J" can be one of the single most miserable platforms to become proficient with and can make a horrible choice for someone unlikely to practice extensively.

A revolver of some type may well turn out to be the best choice but it's a choice that ought not be made by anyone other than your mom. Most certainly, not people posting to an internet gun board that have never once met her.

April 16, 2009, 09:12 AM
I'd suggest a visit to www.corneredcat.com before proceeding too far along this "pick one for mom" path.

I would second the opinion that you visit this website. I discovered it about 2 weeks ago and sent the link to my wife. She has been carrying a handgun for about 2 years. She loved the website and passed it on to other friends and family. It's a great read for men, women, and parents. Lots of information.

How does this relate to the original question? Go to the website and it will provide answers to many questions you didn't think about yet. It will help in your decision as to which handgun will be best for your mother.

April 16, 2009, 01:13 PM
My Mom is dead now, but before she went she caught two guys trying to steal one of her boats. She told them to stop and they ignored her. A shot in the ground between one guy's feet changed their attitude greatly. My daughter can hit a can 5 times at 15 paces easier than I can anymore.
Anyone who is not going to practice at all, or is not prepared to shoot someone even in dire circumstance, should not even have a gun.

April 16, 2009, 01:59 PM
A used Smith and Wesson Model 10, either the 4" light barrel of 2" snub should do fine. Try different grips to find the best fit and experiment with different ammo to find the best load that will accommodate her recoil tolerance.

I also highly recommend having a quality trigger/action job done on the gun and paint the front sight a bright color.

If you have a local range that has rental guns, take advantage of that and have her try all the different options. She may be able to shoot a steel J frame better than the Model 10.

April 16, 2009, 04:42 PM
I recently went through the same quest, for both mom (my 63 yr old wife) and my 27 year old daughter. Both got their concealed carry permits. My wife chose a S&W MP compact 9mm.

The M36 Chiefs special I first suggested had too hard of a trigger pull, even after a trigger job. I have since learned that the newer airweights have decent trigger pulls right from the factory, at least the two I bought did, but I don't know why.

My daughter after trying about 10 different handguns chose a S&W 642.

Both girls shoot coke can size groups or smaller from 5 yards, rapid fire and they're both happy with their choices, but my wife leaves the MP in the drawer at home. When she walks around town or travels out of town. I think it's a little too big or too heavy to slip in her pocket. I think I'll get her to try an airweight.

good luck stan

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