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A friend getting into shooting/self defense reasons

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by PaisteMage, Nov 18, 2012.

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  1. PaisteMage

    PaisteMage Member

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    This person hasn't shot anything.

    She wants a gun for home defense. I figured first to take her to the LGS and have her hold some.

    All I own are a Kahr CW9, and a Ruger SR22. Ill can have her shoot my 9mm, it is what I use for carry. She doesnt want a carry gun.

    I thought a ruger LCR in .38 might be a good choice but I wonder if this might be something a little difficult for a new shooter to shoot.

    She might end up just buying a gun. I figure between me and my friend she can shoot a 9mm, .45 acp, .22lr, Makarov 9, and possibly a friends .380 (Walther PPK I believe he just got).

    Unsure which would be best avenue. I thought I wanted a glock, held a few didn't like it. So the obvious first step is to have her hold a few.

    Any direction would be helpful.
     
  2. Ryanxia

    Ryanxia Member

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    Have her try what you have. If she can handle the calibers than that can narrow it down. Look at gun videos online too to help her see some of the pros and cons.

    Best bet is to let her try different guns out, find some friends that can donate a gun for a day.
     
  3. Starter52

    Starter52 Member

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    I would try to find her a decent DA .38 Spl. revolver with a 4" barrel. A .38 is all she will ever need for a house gun. A K-frame S&W would be ideal, IMO.
     
  4. LeonCarr

    LeonCarr Member

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    Either as mentioned a decent 4 inch .38 Special revolver (Another vote for the K-Frame Smith if it fits her) or a IMO/IME a full size 9mm semiauto handgun if she can operate the slide. Let her choose which one fits her best and is most comfortable for her.

    If strictly for the home, has she considered a long gun?

    Maybe a Ruger 10/22 with a 25 round magazine loaded with CCI Stingers, or a Remington 870 or Mossberg 500 20 Gauge loaded with #3 Buckshot?

    Just my .02,
    LeonCarr
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2012
  5. Powers77

    Powers77 Member

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    Agree with having her hold several at a shop and shoot yours in order to get an idea of what she may want.
    Several of our local shops/ranges also rent guns. Think it was like $10/day and you can switch out guns at will. All you have to do is purchase the ammo there and in my case that was the same price or better than Wally World.
    So if you stay with a caliber or two its not that expensive.
    In my case I was pretty sure I wanted another Glock but ended up with my M & P after shooting several different guns. Just fit me best ergonomically.
     
  6. Sock Puppet

    Sock Puppet Member

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    Home defense with zero experience, huh? If you don't think she will put the time into becoming and staying proficient with a handgun, point her toward the Mossberg 500 and Remington 870 and load up on the buckshot.

    If she plans on taking it with her on trips, or carrying down the road, then a handgun is the way to go.
     
  7. Drail

    Drail Member

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    The first step is to have a heart to heart talk with her about if she is absolutely willing to use a gun on another human. This has to come before any decisions regarding type of gun or caliber. If she has any doubts at all she should not consider a firearm. And she must also be dedicated to a practice routine.
     
  8. HorseSoldier

    HorseSoldier Member

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    Step one, in my mind, is a trip to the range to work on things like grip, stance, and basic manual of arms. If someone doesn't understand the mechanics of actually firing a pistol, what does or doesn't feel right in the hand at a gun store may not be a really helpful indicator of what will be a good fit for that person. Start with the SR22 or other .22 cal pistol and work on basics -- ideally with a target close enough that missing entirely won't be an issue, and hits on paper can be easily analyzed for what's right or wrong with fundamentals. Graduate up to non-rimfire calibers after sorting out fundamentals some -- then go to the gun store and look at what feels like a winner, etc.
     
  9. bigfatdave

    bigfatdave Member

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    acquire a pile-o-guns

    if you don't have a pile-o-guns, your job is to help her get to a pile-o-guns, and provide range time
    if you don't have a range, get someone who does

    come back after you've had her try a few examples (each) of autoloaders, revolvers, rifles, and shotguns - at this point there's nothing to go off of, and we just have a variation on the "what gun should I get for my girlfriend" thread
     
  10. bigfatdave

    bigfatdave Member

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  11. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator

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    First stop, The Cornered Cat.

    Second stop, get her into an NRA Basic Handgun class.

    She'll then have a good foundation and can start deciding what would work best for her.
     
  12. 9MMare

    9MMare Member

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    Well if you go with a hand gun for a house gun, I recommend one that is easy to shoot...meaning points well and doesnt have alot of kick.

    Such as a S&W M&P, the fullsize. 17+1, changeable grip sizes, and if she is comfortable with the medium palm grip, Crimson Trace makes a laser for it which is a great training aid (esp. since she is new to guns) and can be helpful in nighttime situations.

    And not looking to start the 'laser debate.'

    The M&P is a nice 9mm to shoot....for a house gun there's no need for something smaller that will be harder to handle. You can also get it with a safety.
     
  13. BSA1

    BSA1 Member

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    When you say this person hasn't shot anything do you mean she has never fired a gun and has zero firearms experience?

    If so Frank has the best advice....actually I think Frank has the best advice regardless of her experience level.
     
  14. dusty14u

    dusty14u Member

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    Take Franks advice and have her read the Cornered Cat and get her to visit the website. I bought my then fiance, now my wife, the Cornered Cat before we ever hit the range. She was so scared of firearms she would shake just holding a gun. After giving her plenty of time and coaching when she requested it she has chosen my Ruger SP101 as hers. She tried K-frames, 1911's, CZ 85, PA63's etcc... and ended up choosing the Ruger. I tried to get her to practice with a Ruger MKII but she just grabs her snubby and her lane at the range and I leave her alone with a box of handloaded 38's and shoots as long as she wants to.
     
  15. Shawn Dodson

    Shawn Dodson Member

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    I recommend a revolver for someone who isn't a gun enthusiast.

    I'll recommend an auto pistol if the person is able to physically work the slide with little effort and who is willing to devote time and effort in learning how to clear malfunctions quickly under stress, and maintaining this perishable skill.

    For someone who wants a long gun for home defense but who isn't a "shooter" I suggest a five shot Rossi Circuit Judge .410 revolver "shotgun" loaded with Federal Personal Defense 000 buckshot. Again, the revolver design eliminates the need to know how to clear malfunctions or the possibility of shortstroking a pump action, and the four pellet 000 buckshot Federal load provides the best terminal performance. In addition, a long gun is easier to shoot more accurately under stress.

    Good luck!
     
  16. RFMan

    RFMan Member

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    I third Frank's advice. And if that is too much to ask, skip the website and go directly to an introductory class; maybe a lady's intro class. There are almost certainly basic information and mindset issues here.
     
  17. Baba Louie

    Baba Louie Member

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    What Frank said.

    Then, take friend out shooting with your .22. Keep it fun. None of this "Can you Kill or Shoot another Human"... yet (One shoots to STOP lethal force in SD moments). Just let her get over any newbie heeby jeebies, enjoy the moment(s) and gain confidence in putting little holes in paper. When she's ready to step up from the .22, a 9mm is a good way to go.

    Stress safety always, of course.

    You can discuss layers of self defense concept for the home, etc.

    As for any new shooter using a revolver for the first time, index finger strength and pistol control in DA is interesting to watch as most new shooters will want to cock the hammer first for obvious reasons as the SA trigger is easier to master. Might take a few hundred or thousand dry fire sessions to get that finger strength and pistol control down for DA, which can be off-putting for some.

    But then again, elderly grandma types have had no problem blasting a hole or two in ner-do-wells who come acreepin in the middle of the night using their late husbands model 10 with no training whatsoever.
     
  18. Skribs

    Skribs Member

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    "If she's not willing to train, just get her a shotgun"...except you need the same safety training to use a shotgun, and you still need to know how to hit a target with a shotgun. I do agree, though, that if it's strictly for HD, a long gun might be a nice alternative to a handgun.

    My issue for revolvers for women (and this is a gender thing, because women typically have smaller hands) is that you either have a small revolver (typically lightweight and with a decent amount of recoil) or you have something that's big and clunky. The DA trigger pull can be really daunting if the hands aren't up to it, and manipulating the hammer gets more difficult as the gun gets taller.

    My Mom started off on a revolver, but now she uses a single-stack semi-auto because she realized she could manipulate the trigger faster on that than firing a revolver in SA mode. But, in the end it's up to the individual. I would recommend a 9mm semi-auto, personally. One that she can carry, but is heavy enough to absorb some recoil.
     
  19. InkEd

    InkEd Member

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    The CW9 is really a great gun for anyone. It's a good caliber, quality, size and price. It can fill both CCW and HD roles just fine.
     
  20. jtischauser

    jtischauser Member

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    .38 revolvers are what my wife prefers because it's so basic. She can see where the bullets go, see the cylinder rotate, see the hammer go back and forth. She doesn't have to think about safeties, magazines, etc.
     
  21. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    The small snub-nose revolver is a challenge even for an experienced shooter. For home defense concealing is not an issue, so why would you suggest a handgun at all? Go with a carbine. It's far easier to aim and far easier to hit what you aim at. Recoil is a lot less, as well. If safeties are a concern she can simply train with an Israeli presentation, slingshot one in or rack the slide when there's trouble and never bother with the safety as a regular part of drill. That's how I do it.

    Handguns are a poor choice for any self defense scenario if you have any alternative. For concealed carry you really don't. But for home defense, they make little sense. When you add the problems of a novice shooter into the mix, they make even LESS sense. With a day of training she can be nailing bulls at 100 yards with an AR. But it will take months or years to get good enough to do that with a snub at 20 yards, if she ever manages to do it. And that's stationary, visible targets that aren't shooting back or kicking in doors.
     
  22. PaisteMage

    PaisteMage Member

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    Well I did tell her we should sit down and talk about things. Explain the responsibility of owning a gun to yourself, and your neighbor, and what USING a gun entails.
    I was going to take her to the range let her shoot my 9mm, and SR22 to get an idea about firing.
    I already told her she should take the NRA basic Pistol safety course to get an idea. My friend is a certified instructor.
    I thought of the shotgun idea. ANOTHER friend of mine has a pump, so shooting that would also give her an idea.
    I will direct her to that cornered cat website.
    I want to ease her into it, and make the interest in firearms a longstanding one , not a flash in the pan buy a gun and sell it in 6 months kind of thing.
    Also she is the one who mentioned a handgun first. I told her if it is strictly a HD gun to go for a shotgun.
    In my neck of the woods a used Mossberg can be had for right around 200 , all day. Especially right before and after the seasons.
    I do see a previous point about caliber and revolvers going up in size and the difficulty.
    There are a lot of parameters to encounter.
    I do agree with what Frank said, and have directed her to the website.



    Thanks so far for all your replies.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2012
  23. Arkansas Paul

    Arkansas Paul Member

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    I would definitely want her to try one of these as well. That's what we ended up getting for my wife. A Taurus 82 police trade in for $229. She handled it in the store and liked the way it felt. She was having trouble flinching with my .40 but has no issues with my handloads with the .38.
     
  24. PaisteMage

    PaisteMage Member

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    Im going to start reloading come the new year, so the possibility of her getting a .38 would be beneficial for both of us!

    I did kkind of lean heavy on the shotgun side though for strictly HOME DEFENSe.

    She did make a remark about possibly getting a concealed carry license. She has thoughts from all directions in her head.

    To clear the air I figure we would have a relaxing day at the range , to see if she can hit anything, and see her reaction from accomplishing this goal.
     
  25. LegalAlien

    LegalAlien Member

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