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New to guns

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by theory4, Oct 14, 2005.

  1. theory4

    theory4 New Member

    Wats up yall,
    New to guns. Have had some break ins lately and decided I need a gun for protection and self-defense. Any suggestions, tips, or info. I am literally a new to guns (have fired a .45 (that was not mine) only a handful of times). Completely open to any suggestions.
  2. Mnemesyne

    Mnemesyne Well-Known Member

    For home defense I'm going with a 12ga shotgun loaded with 00buck...For personal, I enjoy my 45's but everyone on here is different :) Welcome to the forums....
  3. Yes, I like suggesting to people such as yourself to stick with something simple and effective like a good old Model 10 Smith and Wesson .38 caliber revolver. There are some really good self-defense loads available, and practice is cheap with a .38. There are lots of retired police issue Model 10s available, so you should be able to find plenty of good ones for little money. Don't be worried about worn looking guns, because the vast majority of these guns were hardly ever fired, even though they have a lot of holster wear.
    Once you've purchased it, come back here and ask for safe handling recommendations. We'll be happy to help. Don't feel you need to take a course of some kind. All the safety advice you need is available here. Once you know the basics of safe handling, we can recommend practice methods for the local range. The most inherently safe home defense weapon you could buy would be something like the one I recommended, which is a big part of why I recommended it.

    P.S. Welcome aboard.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2005
  4. charby

    charby Well-Known Member


    When you purchase your first firearm make sure to get some quality training and practice, practice and practice.

    Buy something you can afford to put lots of ammuniton through.

  5. Waitone

    Waitone Well-Known Member

    Welcome. You just joined the best forum on the web pertaining to guns and the safe use thereof.

    My suggestion is simple. Forget about guns. Instead enroll in two course. First course is a safety. Find yourself a genuine official NRA safety instructor. You'll learn the proper and safe way of handing firearms which will protect both you and those around you. Safety is first and foremost in importance. You will learn not only safe handing, you will also get your first exposure to various kinds of firearms and the different uses for firearms. A firearm used for home defense may not the be same for personal defense or hunting for sportsmanship. The NRA safety course will get you headed in the right direction.

    The second course is a gunuine official NRA shootings basics course where you will learn the mechanics of shooting and there is a lot to learn. You have the opportunity to learn shooting right the first time.

    Courses are not that expensive and take most likely 8 hours class time per course. If you are enthusiastic about getting into firearms and just have to purchase something, I suggest purchasing ballistic grade safety glasses and the best ear protection you can find.

    Welcome to the world of safe firearms.
  6. sfhogman

    sfhogman Well-Known Member

    What Waitone said!
  7. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Well-Known Member

    Welcome aboard.

    For a first gun for personal defense, I am with others in recommending a .38 revolver, preferably with a 3 or 4 inch barrel. You could also go with a .357 magnum and shoot .38's until you are ready for more recoil. On the other hand, you said you have fired a .45 before so if you are comfortable with that level of recoil and want an autoloader, just make sure you become proficient with it. Auto's certainly don't lend themselves to new shooters quite as well as wheel guns, but offer certain advantages to more accomplished shooters. Good luck
  8. AnthonyRSS

    AnthonyRSS Well-Known Member

    Read every thread on this site. And I second taking a safety course (all in favour, say aye). And then a shooting course. Choice of gun is not nearly as important as training, I tell ya what...
  9. Jubei

    Jubei Well-Known Member


    Take a safety course, and if possible take it with everyone else in the home (SO, kids, mother-in-law...well maybe not the mother-in-law). Learn the workings of your gun, inside and out, and always remember SAFETY.

    And Welcome.

  10. I guess it's politically incorrect these days to come down against a safety course, and I am not really doing that. I do think, however, that there is way too much emphasis on the need for one. There are only a short list of safety rules which need to be memorized and made into a habit, and a course isn't necessary for doing that. Beyond that, the operating manual will tell you what you need to know about a weapon's function, and most also come with a list of safety rules.

    I started shooting rifles when I was eight, and I guess my dad did tell me not to point it at anyone, assume they are all loaded all the time, even when you "know" they aren't act like they are (Amazing numbers of people have been killed by guns someone knew for sure was unloaded), know what's behind your target, keep the finger off the trigger until ready to fire, and I never forgot those simple rules. Nearly four decades later I have NEVER had any kind of an accidental or negligent discharge, and I am hardly ever without a weapon on me or near me.

    Safety is really not rocket science. It mainly depends on being a responsible enough person to find out the rules and make those rules a way of life. Taking a course isn't going to make you into one of those if you aren't already. And if you aren't already, then you probably shouldn't be getting a gun. Just my two cents.
  11. NMshooter

    NMshooter Well-Known Member

    Shoot, shoot, then shoot some more, then after that get out and do some more shooting.


    It often helps if you have someone more experienced to help you along.

    Forget about any particular type of firearm, you do not know what you want or need at this point, you need to shoot them all.

    Or at least as many as you can manage.

    Rent some, try out your friends' firearms, whatever gets you trigger time.

    You may find firearms chambered in .22LR more affordable for high volume shooting, but whatever you can afford is good.

    And do not be afraid to seek guidance if you find yourself stuck.

    Oh, and welcome to the high road!
  12. Lupinus

    Lupinus Well-Known Member

    I'd recomend the safty and shooting course as well.

    Forum's are great but there is nothing like hand's on training in person.

    And no, I havn't taken the course's...yet. Soon as I have money, currently out of work...maybe cause I spend to much time here when I could be looking for a job lol
  13. mnrivrat

    mnrivrat Well-Known Member

    I'm of simular mind here - nothing the matter with safety and firearm courses, but first you need a firearm !

    I'm also going to agree with a handgun for home protection and a revolver for a first handgun. .357 mag is likely best and can be shot with .38 Specials . If a straight .38 special is availabe cheaper than nothing wrong with that choice either.

    A lot of opinions to a question like you have asked , and most have value. In the end ,do what you are comfortable with because as they say - there's more than one way to skin a cat. For home defense I use both a shorter barrel shotgun & a handgun . Either by itself is considered fine by me also.
  14. odysseus

    odysseus Well-Known Member

    Welcome on!

    Hey - other than self defense, I think you will find firearms a fun, healthy recreation to get into. It can like most interests, get expensive. So be prepared if you get the "bug" to want more. As for the self defense aspect, take that as seriously as you do your life -and learn all the aspects both technical and legal on the use of it in this regard.

    Sounds like you don't have anyone of experience to guide you? I think the advice here is very sound on attending an NRA entry course. There is a lot of training out there, and another thing then: get a LOT of ammo when you eventually get your firearm. :D
  15. Ryder

    Ryder Well-Known Member


    Nobody ever suggests hunting but I will. Teaches good gun handling and you can fill your belly at the same time.

  16. El Tejon

    El Tejon Well-Known Member

    Welcome to THR!

    The firearm matters little, you matter a great deal.

    Seek training, allow your software to guide your hardware selection.
  17. Oldtimer

    Oldtimer Well-Known Member

    In this "relatively calm" time that we are in right now, you probably have enough time to sign up for a firearm safety course that will give you the basics of what shooting is all about. Some of those classes actually SUPPLY the firearms to the students for the "hands-on" portion of the training.

    After completion of the safety course, try to find a gun range that rents firearms....and try as many of them as possible. It might be a bit expensive, for you'll also have to pay for the ammo at that range, but it should give you a better overview of what you want to eventually purchase.

    Talk it up with friends/neighbors/family members who own firearms. By going into your local gun stores, you might not find out what you want, for the owner/employees MIGHT merely try to steer you toward buying the most expensive firearm, or ones that aren't selling very well. It's best to discuss firearms with someone who is knowledgeable, but isn't going to profit from passing on their advice/suggestions.

    You might want to start off with a "basic" firearm, such as a .22 rifle, and work on your shooting skills with something that is fairly inexpensive to shoot, before graduating to the next level. Remember, we all learn how to stand up and WALK, as infants, before attempting to RUN! By mastering walking, it makes it a LOT easier to pick up the pace and gain some coordination before running!
    The same goes for firearms, for I doubt if you'd be able to handle, say, a full-auto military .50 BMG, with any amount of accuracy or confidence as your FIRST firearm.

    Ever heard of the "KISS" theory? It stands for "Keep It Simple, Stupid". Firearms can be downright EXPENSIVE, and so can the ammo for them!
    A good .22 rifle will set you back, say, $200. The ammo for it will be relatively CHEAP, though, so you'll get "more bang for the buck", giving you a LOT more shooting practise without having to raid the ATM. By starting out with an "intermediate" level firearm, you can expect to shell out $400 for the firearm, itself....and about $10 for a box of 50 rounds of ammo. If you invest $500 for a good .22 rifle AND plenty of ammo, it's going to go a LONG way! It will also give you something that most shooters overlook.....the confidence in their shooting skills! Besides, a good .22 rifle is something that most shooters DON'T want to give up or sell, for they are downright FUN to shoot!
  18. reagansquad

    reagansquad Well-Known Member

    I agree that you should take a safety class...

    ...But my suggestion for your first gun is different. I suggest a Glock 19 or 17

    -. 9mm is a great round for a beginner, it's a great defesive round, and it's cheap. Cheap round means more practice!
    -A lot of people don't think Glocks are great for a new shooter because they lack an external safety, but I disagree. Remembering to keep your finger off the the trigger until you're ready to shoot is probably THE MOST IMPORTANT safety rule (ok, tied for 1st place with the other 3 main rules :p ). If you can't keep your finger off of the trigger, then go buy some OC and a big dog for defense.
    -Glocks are also good as a self defense tool for a new person. Someone that hasn't had a lot of practice, but needs a self defense tool NOW isn't going to want to have to deal with flipping all the right switches. Glocks are point and click. Keep It Simple Stupid.
    -Glocks are very easy to maintain. They don't need to be cleaned too often, are easy to take apart, great warranty, lots of available support online.
    -Glocks are super reliable.
    -They are fairly cheap for a quality handgun... in the $500 neighborhood.

    This is the most versatile package out there. Home defense, CCW, targets, plinking, hunting in an emergency, easy to use, easy to shoot, reliable, ammo availablility... You can't beat it as a first firearm.


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