It's amazing what you learn at the gun range..


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InnerVision
June 8, 2012, 10:10 PM
First time visit to an indoor rental/range yesterday..It was a great time. I rented about 8 different guns..many of which I've handled but never shot before..

Turns out, the ones I've wanted based on reputation/feel didn't do a whole lot for me...For instance I've been wanting a G17/19 for a while, but I tried out the caracal and I absolutely liked it the best..along with a cz-75bd..

It also made me realize that I'm happy with what I already have, and I don't really need everything I've been wanting..

It's safe to say that my favorite 9mm so far is the sig 226 and polymer wise, the caracal. The shield is also on my short list for ccw.

Can't wait to make another trip.

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Sky
June 8, 2012, 10:17 PM
I agree totally about holding and firing a weapon; especially a pistol before a purchase. Glad you had a good time.

Captain Brown Beard
June 8, 2012, 10:56 PM
I couldn't agree more. A few years back I just knew I had to have a glock 17 or 19, because they're the best, or so it would appear on the interwebs. Then, I got ahold of a few, handled and shot them, and realized I didn't like anything about them. Not hating on Glocks, calm down Glock guys. Point being, don't ever buy a gun based on hype or recommendation. Handle it first, if possible shoot it.

LightningMan
June 8, 2012, 11:32 PM
Love going to the range myself, as sometimes I get to shoot others guns to try them out. Heres a few examples with my opinion of them; Kimber Solo; The one I shot, was great, trigger was as good maybe better than my Kahr PM9 and my groups were better too. Next a M&P .40 caliber Shield; I liked the feel, but it wasn't as small as I thought, at least not enough to replace my M&P .40 compact. Also a FN-X .45 not sure which model but it had everything, all tan color, threaded barrel, with removable rear sight so it could be replaced with some sort of optics. It was a real soft shooter for a .45 compared to my XD-45 and that isn't bad. If it weren't so pricy, I'd like one of those too. LM

psyopspec
June 8, 2012, 11:36 PM
It's not just what you learned but how you learned it. Tactile experience beats counter talk any day, so good on you.

I lived in Missouri for a brief period. If you're in the KC area, you might try a trip to Overland Park on the KS side and go to The Bullet Hole. It's one of only 2 indoor ranges I've been a regular at that ever felt local to me. It also happens to be the oldest operating indoor range in the US. Good Thai place a couple blocks down for after the shooting.

daybreak
June 9, 2012, 07:43 AM
Point being, don't ever buy a gun based on hype or recommendation. Handle it first, if possible shoot it.

Yup. I wouldn't even buy a gun that I couldn't shoot first

daybreak
June 9, 2012, 07:47 AM
OP,

Can't go wrong with a CZ 75B/BD . I wish the caracal was on the CA ROSTER, but it's not so I haven't had the opportunity to shoot one. Ive heard great things. I personally wouldn't buy a new model anything until its a few years old and been through the paces, but I am excited to shoot one.

I love my CZ however and have become a huge fan.

InnerVision
June 9, 2012, 06:41 PM
psyopspec...No I live closer to St. Louis, so that's where I went.

I'm on the fence with the caracal...it is fairly new, but that gun was the most accurate (for me) between the G17, and cz75. The rest I shot were subcompacts such as the emp, cw9, etc..

Of course, nobody has a shield in stock, but I got to handle the "blue" plastic mold of one. I think it feels just as good as the cw9, but I wasn't very accurate with the cw. I mean..for self defense purposes, the shots were all in center mass..but I couldn't get a tight grouping. I think the shield with its lighter trigger will be way more accurate.

But the caracal was the easiest/softest shooting most accurate gun I've shot so far...

My kimber and the cz I shot were just as accurate, but I was way faster with follow up shots with the caracal. I really want one now..just hope the quality is there.

ExTank
June 9, 2012, 10:04 PM
Where'd you go, InnerVision?

InnerVision
June 10, 2012, 12:22 AM
Top Gun in Arnold.^^^

bds
June 10, 2012, 04:16 AM
Point being, don't ever buy a gun based on hype or recommendation. Handle it first, if possible shoot it.
+1. Holes on target speak volumes.

Especially for defensive/carry pistols, I highly recommend conducting comparison range tests using quick draw/rapid fire at typical combat distances (7-15 yards) and see how the shot groups compare (To be honest, when will you ever do a 50 yard slow-fire defensive shooting? :uhoh:). If you want a range/target pistol, that's different.

Many times I have seen where someone wanted XYZ brand pistols based on recommendations and/or hype but after doing first-hand comparison range tests, end up shooting another brand pistols much better (often, it's not the most expensive pistols that shoot the best :eek:). When they ask for my recommendation, I tell them to look at the holes in their targets, not the price tag on the pistol. ;)

If your/family's life is on the line, missed shots don't count!

RH45
June 10, 2012, 05:33 AM
Over the years, I've bought handguns without even seeing them first. Sometimes they've worked out, sometimes not.

Not everybody's hand has the same grip strength, or the same size. Shooting them, especially when using a shot timer is the best way to go.

boylit
June 16, 2012, 09:34 AM
i've had my caracal for a few weeks now... very happy with it...

planning to start joining fun shoots and some club matches so i had an alloy speed holster machined for me...

http://i33.photobucket.com/albums/d64/boylit/_DSC9069.jpg (http://caracalshooter.blogspot.com/2012/06/custom-competition-kit.html)
clicking the link will take you to my blog (http://caracalshooter.blogspot.com/) with more pics.

mavracer
June 16, 2012, 10:38 AM
It also made me realize that I'm happy with what I already have, and I don't really need everything I've been wanting.
Ya but stoping when you have everything you need is nowhere near as much fun.
I agree that you really need to shoot some before you really know if you like them. But I got no problem buying sight unseen it's not like your getting married you'll only loose a feww $ on a gun not 1/2.

Wanderling
June 16, 2012, 11:54 AM
I think most modern guns are so good that it's really just down to personal preference, and it's an absolute must to try first.

I wanted Beretta 92, found out it was too wide for my hands. And I have average hands.

Px4 Storm - a beautiful gun I couldn't shoot straight with, for whatever reason.

G19 - grip grooves pinched my pinky.

G17 - despite grip being nowhere near as comfortable as Px4, that's the gun I shot the best every time I rented it & ended up eventually buying as my firsrt. Even though at first I didn't like the grip and the looks all that much. But it ended up being the best gun so far for me to shoot, the one which lets me concentrate on the target and forget about the gun.

After that experience, I will never buy a gun without trying it first. Not unless it's a real good deal & can be resold later.

Cherokee
June 16, 2012, 03:26 PM
psyopspec - I was there the first saturday "the bullet hole" opened in '69 or 70 and I have to say, it is not the oldest indoor range in the US. Don't know what it's like now but it was really a great range back then.

OP - You might give the XDM 5.25 a look. I rented one and ended up buying one, great gun for me. YMMV

Walt Sherrill
June 17, 2012, 10:44 AM
It also made me realize that I'm happy with what I already have, and I don't really need everything I've been wanting...

Most of us don't have access to ranges that have a wide variety of rental guns. You were able to learn, quickly and cheaply, what most of us learn only over time and after much expense: what we already have is often quite good.

Fads pervade food, clothing, housing sales, and everything else humans do. They also infest gun offerings.

MedWheeler
June 17, 2012, 11:38 AM
I learned that Glocks (at least, the M17) don't "fit me" when a friend let me try his. I have rented one gun before, and it wasn't that long ago. It was a Sig 1911 that had had some custom work done on it. Very soft shooter, but hard to truly assess, as I am left-handed and the gun was not made for LH-ed use. But, I had never shot a .45 before, and was wondering if I'd want one. I did have a good time with it, but have not yet decided I want a .45.
Always fun to try out new stuff, but I find that it frequently makes me feel better about what I already have as well. In fact, I used to notice that even when test-driving cars.

beatledog7
June 17, 2012, 12:43 PM
Wanting what you have is way more satisfying than having what you want.

But I still want a 25-06.

coalman
June 17, 2012, 02:04 PM
The CZ is a fine shooter. And, the Caracal seems promising. Smart move testing before buying.

psyopspec
June 17, 2012, 08:03 PM
psyopspec - I was there the first saturday "the bullet hole" opened in '69 or 70 and I have to say, it is not the oldest indoor range in the US. Don't know what it's like now but it was really a great range back then.

Good catch Cherokee. I went back and fact-checked myself - turns out The Bullet Hole is the largest indoor shooting range (at the time it opened in DEC 1967). It is NOT the oldest.

The history blurb on the ranges' web site makes it sound like it would have been a fun event. Stewardesses and expo shooters... I bet a good time was had by all. You should consider writing a thread about it if you have time. I, and I'm sure others, would be interested to hear about it.

As for how it is now: Clean, safe, very friendly staff. A little pricey on guns and ammunition, but by no means the worst I've seen. They allow outside ammo, so I can handle the markups by bringing my own. 5 dollars lets you rent all the handguns you want for a range session.

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