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Looking To Purchase First Gun

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Kinzer, Dec 6, 2009.

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  1. Kinzer

    Kinzer Member

    Aug 12, 2009
    So my father and I will be heading to a local gunshop today to have a look at some firearms, hopefully seeing one he'd like to buy. We already have one, a rifle, which was passed down from his father, but this will be the first one bought in a store. My dad seems pretty set on a Glock 21. I told him that he should shoot one first to make sure he's comfortable with it, but he said he's shot a .45 before and can handle the recoil. I said there's more to it than that.

    So my question is, what are the factors we should take into account when deciding on a handgun? We'll rent and fire a few, but what should we be looking at? Also, from my reading on these forums, I've realized that gunshop employees don't always give correct information, either accidentally or purposefully. How can we avoid being taken advantage of by being given false information? I might catch a few things as being wrong, but I don't think it will be best if I try to start correcting people.

    Any and all help will be appreciated.
  2. Straight Shooter

    Straight Shooter Member

    Feb 22, 2009
    You are correct, there is more to it than that. Different guns have different ergonomics. For example The Springfield XD feels different than a Glock 21 (grip angle is different) although they are both .45s.

    Some have thinner grips while other have thicker ones. Some have a longer trigger reach while some shorter, this makes a difference if your father has small or large hands.

    My best advice, handle and shoot as many as your father can get a hold of and see what is most comfortable in his hand. Once he has narrowed it down to a few, then you can use the power of the Internet to find out information about them and what a reasonable price would be. This reduces the possibility of being taken advantage of.

    Hope this helps.
  3. ClayInTX

    ClayInTX Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    We'll rent and fire a few...

    Very good first step.
    Do that.
    Then come back into the forum and get more answers (opinions).
  4. WalkAbout

    WalkAbout Member

    Mar 27, 2008
    Gods Country, USA
    You're on the right path. If you rent several and shoot them, you'll know what you want when you go to the counter to buy. Then you don't need any input from the clerk. ;-)

  5. JoeSlomo

    JoeSlomo Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    1. What is the purpose?

    A firearm is a tool, and as you wouldn't use a screw driver to install spark plugs, you must decide what the purpose of your purchase is...

    Defense? Competition (action / bullseye)? Hunting? Plinking?

    While some firearms can fulfill a variety of roles, others are more specific to a set purpose. For defense I would go with a minimum size of 9mm.

    2. Price...

    You must be realistic about how much you are willing to spend. As with vehicles, firearms have a wide range in price.

    3. Fit and function.

    Some firearms fit your hand better, point better, and are easier for you to operate. You want to choose the models that are comfortable for you to hold, and have controls that you can easily use.

    4. Test for accuracy.

    Once you have an idea of the firearms you are interested in, test fire them if at all possible. While your marksmanship skills can be improved, you may find that a certain firearm just "clicks" in your hands, and you are more inherantly accurate with it than others. Whether due to size of the round, or minor differences in ergonomics.

    Good luck!
  6. medalguy

    medalguy Member

    Mar 20, 2009
    New Mexico
    I would also suggest going to a gun show and handle as many different guns as you can. ALWAYS ask poermission to pick up a gun first and NEVER pull the trigger, turn the cylinder, or open a revolver's cylinder!

    I worked with my daughter for several months to find a gun that fit her hand and felt comfortable to her. Also ended up buying that gun at a show. The selection at shows is far superior to what you will find at any dealer's shop.

    Short answer: Do a lot of looking, and when you find one that feels comfortable, try to shoot that model before making a purchase.
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