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Here's to soon buying my first autoloader!

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by redwhiteblue, Dec 5, 2007.

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  1. redwhiteblue

    redwhiteblue Member

    Dec 5, 2007
    Welcome everyone. I'm new to the forum. I've actually been lurcking for sometime, and just wanted to add that this is an excellent firearm forum. I'd like to think that I have learned a lot here, and have more to learn every day.

    As the thread states, I'm going to soon purchase my first Autoloader. I'll tell you that I do have some experience with firearms. I spent 4 years in the USAF, I'm a NRA member, I belong to a gunclub, I own a S&W revolver, and I just got my CCL 10 months ago.

    I'm a hunter, and own a nice 30-06, I also own a Bushmaster M-4 clone, have a Mossberg 12g for home defense, and I plink at cans with a marlin model 60 .22lr.

    I love handguns, so last year when I began thinking about getting my CCL, being a newbie to handguns, I went the wheel gun route. Being a big guy, I thought it practicle to buy a pocket handgun. I did my research and settled on a S&W 5 shot model 640, and obtained my CCL. I figured that a hollowpoint .38 +P bullet was sure a step up from my knife.

    Fantastic first handgun to start with. Just aim and pull the trigger.

    Now I've been at the range and have tried out quite a few different handguns. I love revolvers, and wouldn't mind owning another one some day, but right now I've been saving up for a semi-auto. This handgun will have many uses, but the main thing is to carry it for CCW, and use it for fun at the range. I think I'll keep the 12g for my primary home defense weapon.

    I've read many different points of views with regard to what to get, and how to buy. I'll tell you what I did. I didn't rush out a buy. Instead I read different ideas on this and other forums, shot different handguns at the range, and saved my money. Now, instead of running down to the gunstore with a couple hundred bucks, and uninformed, I now some ideas and some experience, as well as a budget of about $1000.

    I want to choose a handgun that I can maintain, love, and that I'll still be shooting 20 years from now. I'd like to run some of my experience and likes by you, and see what others might do in this situation. With my range time, I have come up with quite a few opinions. I don't want to step on any toes with my posted likes and dislikes. These are just my observations.

    First and foremost I have chosen a caliber. It will be .45acp. Nothing wrong with other calibers. Simply, this is just what I want, coming from a guy that's been carrying .38 +P.

    There have been many handguns that have made an impression on me. Here's a big thank you, to all the guys and girls at my club that let me shoot there handguns.

    First off, I have been shooting a 9mm BHP. This is a fantastic gun. I don't even know if there is a .45 option.

    I've shot an assortment of Berettas. The 92 is a fantastic fit. It has a Hogue wrap around grip, and shot really well. For those of you who know the Beretta, that grip is a great size for my big hand. The other Beretta I Shot frequently was a 8045 Cougar. Full sized hand grip. I really enjoyed this firearm. Tack driver. Very comfortable. I really like this handgun. Any other suggestions for Beretta 45's?

    Sig Sauer. These are very smooth and accurate handguns. I fired a 220 in .45, it was a full sized handgun, maybe not the best for CCW, but I loved it. Never even a hiccup . I also fired a 229, as well as a 239 with a hogue grip. The 239, was about as small as I could go grip wise with my big hands.

    Glock. Never had a failure, and they were pretty accurate. I have to say I would not own one of these. I did not like the trigger at all. Robert, one of the guys who owned 3 different models, swore by them. I looked them up and know that I was shooting a G17, a G21, and his main CCW a G23. I simply could not get by the strange (at least to me) trigger feel.

    At this point I'm realizing that I Like a DA/SA triggers, but not the Glock trigger. I do not mind a Polymer body. The smoothest shooter was the heavy Beretta. I believe the Sig Sauer has an aluminum body.

    I then shot a Llama .45. I don't want to hurt your feelings if you own one of these, but this gun reenforced my need to save up for a better quality handgun. This one drew blood on my big hand.

    Another guy owned a H&K USP in .45 ACP. What a handgun. It shot Like a dream. I could see myself owning this handgun. It was as as good as the Sig Sauer, and I loved the Sig Sauer. Beretta was still the absolute smoothest.

    Then I got introduced to some 1911's. Saftey, hammer back in most carry situations??? grip safety. I first fired a Colt. 6". Dont remember the model. It was well worn, and I swear it had a hair trigger. It shot very smooth. SA is amazing. Nice handgun. Then I got to shoot a Springfield Armory "MilSpec"? Very nice. I think it was was 5 inches. I then got to shoot a Kimber Pro Carry II. This was 4 inches, and If I bought a 1911, This would be the size I would buy. I've held a 3", but again 4" would be my choice. The Kimber was by far the most accurate gun I've ever fired. I could not miss with this particular model. I also love the stainless look, but am buying the best quality, not a look. Other than I will not buy a Camo gun.

    I shot a Ruger 45. It was a nice handgun. I had one FTF with this gun. The guy who owned it stated it was his carry weapon. Not bad, but I liked others more.

    Next came a Desert Eagle in .50cal, Awesome look. Just huge. Kicked like a mule when I shot it off hand, one handed, just to see if I could do it. FTF on 2 out of about 15 rounds. Scratch this off the list.

    I also shot .40 S&W sigma. If I was turned off by the Glock trigger, this was worse. Actually a comfotable gun. I noticed that this polymer grip was probably the most comfortable polymer grip that I handled. The thumb divit was perfectly placed for me. Felt really good in my hand.
    Please let me known about other S&W .45's. I believe my Mod 640 is very high quality revolver.

    I shot a Taurus that I believe is a Beretta clone. Smooth, and pretty comfortable. I know nothing about this brand.

    Wow what a rant. I hope I don't get band.

    There are other handguns I'd love to try. I know there are PLENTY of good quality handguns out there. I'd like to comeout of this on budget, With a holster, Extra mags, New cleaning kit, basically, the whole set up.

    So, some of the qualities I liked,

    Beretta, Very smooth, and I like the DA/SA. Are there .45 options beside the 8045? I think there is something called a PX4 coming out?

    Sig Sauer. A top shelf handgun. I think I'd own the 220 in a heartbeat. As would I own that H&K that I fired. Apples and oranges with my very limited experience.

    No Glock or S&W Sigma, just because of the trigger. I'm sure they are top quality handguns, but just not for me. Again, other S&W .45 options?

    No to the Taurus, and I think I'll vote no on the Ruger.

    1911s. I bought the S&W 640 for it's simplicity. These are different. I'm sure I'd pick up on the bells and whistles very quickly, but let's review. Grip safety. Manual safety ( I am right handed), position of hammer for carry? I fired a Colt 6"?, and SA 'Mil-Spec' ? and the Kimber Pro carry. I like the 4" length.

    No to the Llama and the Dessert Eagle.

    Again, I'd like to get the whole package for $1000. I also will need ammo, and CC Premium loads. I've read about different brands and sizes ranging from 165gr to 230gr.

    I'm trying to think of any other characteristic I like or dislike. The only one that comes to mind is that I felt that the 1911 single stack grips felt a touch small in my big hand. Barely, but just enough for me to say something. Something else, I might also like a rail system for an optional light, laser pointer, etc. What are the pro's and cons?

    Thanks everyone for listening.

    Any opinions would be appreciated.

  2. cslinger

    cslinger Member

    Dec 24, 2002
    Nashville, TN
    You can buy a SIG P220 carry which is a slightly shorter P220. There are also older P245s which are shorter in both slide and grip. Many folks find the grip on these too small but other than that they are fantastic .45s.

  3. CountGlockula

    CountGlockula Member

    Oct 1, 2006
    In a Los Angeles coffin.
    Welcome sir!

    I'd like to inquire more about why you didn't like the Glock trigger?

    I have GLOCK model 35 with 3.5lb connector and NY1 Trigger spring (Glock anatomy lesson:D), and it makes the trigger feel like a revolver trigger. Plus, GLOCK offers a trigger reset for better follow through.
  4. Black Majik

    Black Majik Member

    Sep 13, 2003
    Orange County, California
    Welcome aboard. Don't feel bad regarding the Glock. I like Glocks too and I also hate the stock trigger, but a 3.5# connector with new spring kit will really lighten up and make the trigger sweet.

    The HK, SIG Sauer, Beretta are all very popular and top quality DA/SA pistols. I'm glad to hear you got to try a 1911, they're definitely something else.

    Stick around, read a bunch of posts. You'll start to formulate your own biased opinions as all of us have. We all have a platform we're "one" with.

    See ya around :D
  5. Geno
    • Contributing Member

    Geno Member

    Jun 11, 2005
    I have the 3.5 Lb and quick rest in my G19C! Fun, smooth, reliable.

  6. redwhiteblue

    redwhiteblue Member

    Dec 5, 2007
    Count Glockula

    Thanks for the reply.

    Like I said, I believe that Glock makes a fine handgun. I don't know how to say it, other than I simply didn't like the feel. It was a steady, I believe he said 6# pull, but it just felt strange. There were other triggers that instantly said, Yes, Like the Sig Sauer, H&K, and even the Beretta. Is it just like the difference between lets say a Beretta and a 1911.

    Nothing personal about Glock, it's just not going to be my choice at this point.

    Don't think I'm still not going to fire them when they are offered.:D
  7. glockman19

    glockman19 Member

    Mar 16, 2007

    Welcome to THR.

    I too ama glock fan and have the #3.5 trigger. Feels a lot like my 1911 now. Teh S&W 640 is a fine revolver I plan on adding one to the collection soon.

    If you've decided on a .45 caliber I'd have to say to stick with a 1911 style auto. Colt, Springfield, Kimber are all great guns to look at. I have Kimbers in my collection and just picked up a Pro Carry II. I'd highly recommend it. It's a great gun ans fits in yout budget. I have a FFL in Texas who is a Master Dealer where you can get on efor $693. They are a little more with night sights. I'd add them. also a Ambidextros safety. You'll still come in at under $800. Contact:
    Jim @ Jims Firearms and Shooters Supplies
    State: TX
    Phone Number: 409-722-4000
    FFL Dealer: FFL Dealer

    Tell him I sent you.

    Please let us know what you ultimately decided on.
  8. Lonestar49

    Lonestar49 Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    So. Calif.
    Couple of thoughts for ya..


    Not in any particular order..

    First, I have a Beretta Px4 40cal.. love it, 5500 rounds and not any failures, just 100%. One of, if not, the *easiest guns to disassemble, inspect, clean, and reassemble out there, bar none. Same thing about field stripping of Sigs.

    *Easy, fun, short time, cleaning, reassemble, is a bonus in my book.. IMHO.

    I don't think the Px4 in 45cal is going to be coming out anytime soon, so ya might want to either go Cougar 8045 or pass on Beretta and go Sig.

    Easy, fun, short time, cleaning is a bonus in my book.. IMHO.

    As mentioned, you can try a Sig P220 Carry, about an 1/2" shorter, but slightly wider/slide, same grip, and same load-out.. 8+1 in 45.

    But you might want to look at a Sig P226 in 40cal, as it is thin, same as the slide on the full size P220, but you will have a double-stack mag, instead of the P220 full or Carry's signal-stack mags..

    Not sure what your State limits are on mag loads for hand guns, but here in Calif, we can only have 10 round mags, max, with any new gun purchase.

    If your state allows 14 round mag loads, then you could have the best of both worlds IMHO, and go with a Sig P226, and maybe even a Sig P229 in 40cal, and get both, a grip you like for your hands (not too small) and have more rounds, than any of the 45's.

    Tough choices, as all guns mentioned, work flawlessly out of the box, and all are REAL accurate as well, along with Sigs come with real night sights.

    All models I was referring to, come in DA/SA, and a couple come in SAO, which IMHO, carrying cocked and locked, with thumb-slide-safety ON with the same light, consistent (but not hair trigger) pulls is the best of all worlds.

    But I have just as much confidence in my DA/SA guns for HD/SD as well.

    Enjoy the journey..

    Px4 40cal
    Sig P220 Carry 45cal
    Sig P229 40cal

    Any one of these 3 are excellent, in size, length, for CCW IMHO.

    Oh, I remember what I wanted to share with you. The other week, the guy in the next lane was firing a DAK Sig, which by its looks, to me, was a full size P220, but turned out to be a P226 40cal. But when he loaded it up and let me shoot it, I really thought it was a 45cal, until he corrected me ("it's a 40cal") when I said "that was a great DAK trigger in 45cal.. lol

    GREAT shooter, just like my P220, with no perceived difference in recoil to me.

  9. redwhiteblue

    redwhiteblue Member

    Dec 5, 2007
    Thanks glockman19

    I can't say enough about the S&W 640, with some good quality .38 +P loads. Pocket holster, on my dominant side, and I can have it out instantly. Love the internal hammer. No snags.

    When it comes to Glock, sounds like I've only experience the stock trigger.

    That Kimber Pro Carry II suprised me. More accurate than I am. Everyone might find that one gun that they could tack drive with. For me, it was this gun. Maybe, if I bought my own, it wouldn't be as spot on as this guys model. I'm telling you it was scary accurate. I also like that 4" length. Good looking gun too.
  10. Texastbird

    Texastbird Member

    Jul 20, 2007
    Wow, it looks like you really have been doing your homework. Some Hogue wrap around grips might make the 1911 style pistol easier to hold onto with a large hand. I have them on my Ruger P89 and they make all the difference in the world. I'm thinking about getting some for my Taurus PT1911 to try out. If you want a striker fired pistol, my daughter in law has a XD45 that everyone that shoots it is impressed with. I like my Taurus, but if I would have wanted to spend more money, one of the Kimbers might be nice. I've heard good things about the Dan Wesson also. Have fun finding what you want.
  11. Baneblade

    Baneblade Member

    May 20, 2007
    Northern Arizona
    Looks to me like you already found your gun, a 1911. You liked the Kimber, it was accurate, and you only compalint was that it was a little small. I think that would be a sound choice for you.
  12. varoadking

    varoadking Member

    Jun 22, 2003
    P220 Carry Stainless Elite with the SRT trigger system. It will not leave you wanting...

  13. redwhiteblue

    redwhiteblue Member

    Dec 5, 2007

    That is one fine looking handgun. The 220 that I shot was not stainless, didn't have the SRT trigger system (which I'm going to look up now, Like I said, I'm here to learn), and it even has a rail system if I wan't it.


    I think the Sig 220 is in my top 3. I like the Kimber Pro Carry II, And still like the H & K USP

    I've got some very positive feedback on the SIG's and the 1911's.

    Anyone out there with more H & K experience?

    Thanks for all the feedback everyone.
  14. redwhiteblue

    redwhiteblue Member

    Dec 5, 2007

    I will look into wrap around hogue grips for the 1911. If I end up going with the Kimber, or another brand, your suggestion might make the difference.

    How would they work with the palm safety? I haven't even looked them up yet.

  15. Setzer77

    Setzer77 Member

    May 11, 2007
    If you found the 1911 grip just a touch small, I'm almost positive the Hogue wraparounds would do you justice. If not, pachmayr makes a grip called the american legend, it features wood grips with a rubber front wraparound. Hogue also has palmswell grips that add a little girth to the 1911. Being a 1911 fan myself, I can tell you they are wonderful pistols. The grip safety that you mention is completely passive, and you should have no issues depressing it. If you like 4" models, take a look also at a springfield loaded champion. Such a pistol should be right within your price range (and leave money for magazines, ammo, and a good holster. C&L (cocked and locked) is generally the preferred way to carry the 1911, and once you understand how it works and how easy it is to bring into action, I'm sure you'll be more comfortable with it. Good luck on your first purchase, there are a lot of top choice firearms out there to choose from, and I'm sure you'll find one that'll fill your requirements and that you'll enjoy for years to come.
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