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Handgun advice for a newbie?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Knighted, Sep 1, 2010.

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  1. Knighted

    Knighted Member

    Sep 1, 2010
    Hi Everyone,

    I bought my first gun about a year ago - a Glock 19. I chose a Glock based on what I had read and heard about them.

    Now that I have a bit more experience shooting with this weapon and some other handguns (mainly at a training class), I have realized that I just do not like Glocks. Or more specifically - I hate the grip and the trigger.

    I really like the feel of the Hi-Powers and 1911s. I love that nice slim grip and the crisp trigger pull. I may just get one of those models, but I wanted to ask you more experienced shooters first: is there a more modern weapon that would give me the feel I'm looking for in a handgun?

    I will probably start carrying concealed once I get my license this year, so I wouldn't mind the lighter weight of a modern pistol as long as it feels solid and high-quality. I also like the idiot-proof field stripping of the Glock. I am sure that taking apart a 1911 is second nature once you learn it, but as a newbie watching people do it, it looks like brain surgery.

    I'm specifically considering an M&P. I hear those are great. Is there any other weapon I might consider? Sigs, HKs?

    I really appreciate any help you can offer!
  2. wow6599

    wow6599 Member

    Apr 6, 2008
    Wildwood, MO
  3. Skinsanity

    Skinsanity Member

    Feb 2, 2010
    The Glock is a fine weapon, if it suits you, but I, like yourself , dont like the grip angle or the trigger. You have good taste the browning and the 1911 are excellent platforms, as is the M&P. Though I would add to your list any of the CZ-75 series or the Springfield XD, I think you learned from your first purchase, try before you buy, if you have that option, the best pistol on the market, is the one that goes bang when you want it to, doesnt when you dont, and feels good when your doing it.....
  4. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

    Jun 5, 2006
    In a part of Utah that resembles Tattooine.
    By the authority vested in me by......the internet guys, you are hereby absolved from any clinging sense of responsibility you might have whispering in your ear that tells you; "You bought a gun. You did your homework. You liked it at one time. Now you have to keep that gun forever or be thought a fool." It's ok. You can do what you want to. There is no bad karma that follows switching guns. You are in fact allowed to change your mind during the course of your hobby. There. You're good.

    You need to get to a rental range. A couple. Shoot a bunch of different guns, all of the ones you have mentioned and then some more. I'll tell you now, if it's the trigger you like, you will gravitate back to 1911s. Field stripping is no big deal. If you're intimidated by it now, go rent "Scent of a Woman". You will instantly be obsessed to see how fast you can do it with your eyes closed. (Or "Major Payne". You will want to try it hanging upside down and blindfolded to see if you can do it before your nose starts to bleed.)

    The trigger I like best in modern handguns is the XD.

    Oh, and if you change your mind again, you can come back and we will again absolve you and give you permission to change. :)
  5. El_Tortuga

    El_Tortuga Member

    Jun 14, 2010
    I'm a Glock guy (23C), but its all about finding a fit for YOU.

    I did my research of a bunch of options and had pre-selected an XD. However, when I handled and shot a friend's, I realized it wasn't a fit for me. The Glock is a fit, it shoots well for me, and I love the dead simple reliability.

    The best fit instruction I've seen is over at The Cornered Cat:
  6. labhound

    labhound Member

    Feb 8, 2010
    Go to a gun shop and handle as many as you can, go to a range, rent and shoot as many as you can. There are lots of really good guns out there in varying price ranges. When you find one that is a fit for your hand and you shoot well, then come back and tell us what you're considering before you buy it. Everyone can give you their opinions on what you have narrowed it down to.
  7. sonofodin

    sonofodin Member.

    Sep 5, 2006
    Give a Kahr CW 45 a try. DAO but smooth trigger pull. 6+1 capacity in a carry size package.
  8. jackpinesavages

    jackpinesavages member

    Mar 17, 2009
    I did the same thing. First off is to have an instructor show you the proper grip for a revolver vs. autos- at least that changed my course. Then, with your "approved" grip, go shopping for hand fit. (That's what I call it anyway.) I have XXL hands and have found that the ergos and basic fit of a pistol is essential for accuracy and enjoyment. Now, that instruction might seem like a no-brainer but you'd be surprised at how many folks just read reviews here and then order that...... pistol, sight unseen.

    The M&P line is fantastic. I have 3 of them, but they fit my hands and are a joy for me to shoot. Go with the ProSeries if you can, in either the .40 or 9mm. If you like the 1911s go with an STI.
  9. gwnorth

    gwnorth Member

    Sep 3, 2008
    North Carolina
    From your op it sounds like you prefer the slimmer grip of a single stack pistol. You should try some single stacks other then the two you mentioned to get a real comparison in your mind. A Sig P239 might be an option to look at, for example, or a used P245. Just find ones you can handle or better, shoot and get a sense of what you like or dislike.
  10. BlindJustice

    BlindJustice Member

    Jul 26, 2007
    Pullman, WA
    I've shot my buddys' Glock 19 - accurate and reliable but I didn't care for the Grip, other controls, or sights. I impressed with the M&P .40 Standard size enough that I have put an M&P 45C on the top of my Want one list. & the M&P comes with 3 intercahngeable back straps for
    varying the grip to your taste.

    I have a S&W 1911 and have owned a BHP. Nothing can beat a 1911 in a service sized pistl. -and- the .45 ACP is low pressure big bullet
    Boom like a Push instead of the snappy 9mm. Teh BHP with the trigger
    being tied to the magazine disconnect is heavier than most.
    I carry my full size 1911 a lot, I have a MIlt Sparkks rig.

    I'd recommend the DA/SA CZ 75B It can be carried Condition 1 for a Single Action SA first shot with the thumb safety engaged or manually drop the hammer to half cock for a Double action first shothen it reverts to
    SA for subsequent shots. My 75B has a curved backstrap thatt really
    feels goo / fits ME. VERY reliable and silly accurate easy to
    dissaemble and reassemble

    One variation on the 1911 platform is the shorter grip frame from the
    Officers MOdel but with the Commander 4.25" Bbl./Slide Colt used to
    make one called the Combat Carry Officers CCO. S&W now offers a CCO
    format gun, called the SW1911 ES. SIg makes 4 different models &
    others Or a Colt 19911Series Commander size variant might be the ticket

  11. Strahley

    Strahley Member

    Oct 30, 2009
    I'd get a quality .22LR next (Buck Mark, 22/45, etc)
  12. Manco

    Manco Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    The M&P is a great alternative with different ergonomics that will appeal more to some people. Keep in mind that if you don't like the palm swell of the default backstrap, there is a "small" backstrap that does away with that while maintaining the grip's rounded profile; there is also a "large" backstrap that increases the size of the palm swell, which some people prefer.
  13. TexasGunbie

    TexasGunbie Member

    Aug 23, 2010
    You have mentioned you wanted a light gun for coneal carry. You will definitely want to look into Kahr line of guns if you want something slim. In my opinion, any time you step away from polymer and go full metal, it won't be as pleasant to carry. There are guys out there that say they have no problem with a heavier gun, and that's all dependent on you. How do you like shooting the 45? Because for some people, stepping up from a 9 to 45 is a big step. Definitely XD comes to mind when you want to go to 45 because of they are quite reliable. The trigger is nice, but some people don't like the grip angle.
    Instead of thinking about buying another gun, the glock 19 do quite well as a conceal weapon, maybe you can add a hogue grip on it. A lot of XD shooters have added a hogue grip on theirs. I also have heart a lot of good things about the FNP 9 and 45 pistols. You may want to rent one and give it a shot.
    A main lesson I have learned over the years as a gun owner is that instead of buying multiple pistols, you may want to focus on just one gun and be very very proficient with it.
  14. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Member

    Jul 30, 2006
    Johnson City, TN
    I've often called the M&P a "better feeling Glock." :D Too bad there isn't a Glock 19-sized offering in the lineup that splits the difference between the compact and full sized. I would be all over that. The 9mm compact I had did function 100% perfectly from the very first round. :)

    If you can, try renting identical or similar guns at a range. This is how I got turned on to the M&P (the one I shot was a full sized 9mm). I was somewhat underwhelmed by the XD I tried immediately prior.
  15. handle02

    handle02 Member

    Jun 7, 2009
    I had a glock 23 but, had to sell due to hard times,now I have an m&p .40 and couldn't be happier!! The grip on these pistols are just amazing, the most comfortable gun that I have ever handled.
  16. TexasPatriot.308

    TexasPatriot.308 Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Luling Texas
    any 1911, if a young GI can learn how to handle, shoot and clean one, surely you canand it is a proven stopper.
  17. millertyme

    millertyme Member

    May 22, 2009
    Glock? Well, according to the post up in the general gun discussion section you need to make sure the muzzle is ALWAYS pointed in a safe direction and when you begin to strip it to clean it never pull the trigger without first clearing the chamber!

    And on a side note, I believe the Browning Hi Power to be the pinnacle of JMB's designs in fit, form, and function. That being said, and given my nearly destitute disposition while in law school, I opted for a CZ 75B for its nearly identical feel and significantly lower price point.
  18. Zerodefect

    Zerodefect Member

    Mar 28, 2009
    Yakutsk, Sakha Republic
    I carry a Glock 23 or a 1911 or a Kahr P380.

    Make sure your useing a proper modern combat grip on that Glock. Isocoles stance, well at least for your arms, it don't matter where your legs go.

    The Glocks feel better to me due to the fatter grip. The XD, Glock, and M&P all seem to have fatter grips than my 1911's. Those guns are light so they need that area to soak up recoil.

    The skinny 1911's, like my CDP with thin Alumagrips are probally the easiest to carry fullsize .45. Very thin. But that leaves less room on the grip for my support hand. I have to think about my grip on my 1911, on the Glock I'm more natural. The thicker regular grips are on my 1911's that are for a secondary to my rifle (OWB open carry, classes, comps, range time, OWB concealed way outdoors carry etc.) But i prefere my heavier 1911's to my lighter Al framed models. The weight makes them sweeter to shoot.

    The 1911 trigger is the best out there.

    Still I go back and forth between the Glocks and 1911's, but the edge usually goes to a Glock for closer ranges, and more intense competitions with longer ranges go to the 1911. The Glock seems faster from target to target. And it's horrible trigger disappears under stress and works fine. My 1911's need constant practice If I want to kep up with my Glocks. Without practice the 1911 gets slower to aim, draw, and transition to different targets. Just not as natural for me as the Glock.

    So I wouldn't give up on your Glock yet. Don't trade it or sell it. And get a 1911 if you want to. I recommend Dan Wessons Valor.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2010
  19. Atticus the Finch

    Atticus the Finch Member

    Aug 28, 2010
    the gun restricted state of New York
    I too am not a fan of the Glock grip angle at all. As I've seen before and as many people told me, try out all of the guns you're thinking about at a range first. The only opinion that matters is yours.

    When I picked up my SIG I thought for sure I wouldn't buy another gun after it. But all of a sudden I started thinking, "maybe I need a striker fired pistol, the m&p's look nice, ooo a walther P99 is really comfortable." I'm sure it won't be the last time either you start thinking about other options.
  20. Squidbert

    Squidbert Member

    Jul 17, 2010
    Spokane Valley, Wa
    Another vote for the M&P line - I absolutely love my M&P9 compact! I've also previously owned an XD and they're great guns too. If the pistol will be used for carry, short of going for a single stack sub-compact, the M&P is a fine choice and carries very well for me in my MTAC holster.

    I'd definitely go to a range, fondle and rent a few guns, and see what ya like. 1911's and hi-powers are great guns, but being all metal, they're gonna weigh significantly more than a polymer framed pistol.
  21. killchain

    killchain Member

    May 30, 2010
    Washington State
    If you like the 1911 grip style, look into the FNP series of pistols.
  22. Full Metal Jacket

    Full Metal Jacket member

    Dec 11, 2009
    hiding in your bushes
    that's how i felt about my m&p's. sold them and bought more glocks. to each his own. :)

    my m&p's never jammed, but the mp40c had a slide lock with a mind of it's own. 3 trips back to s&w never resolved the issue. i could never shoot the m&p's very well either. no where near as well as my glocks. the grip + trigger pull made them both shift horizontally in my hands while pulling the trigger.
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