Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

New to Handguns

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Baldman, Dec 9, 2012.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Baldman

    Baldman Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Messages:
    169
    Location:
    SE PA
    Gentlemen, as the title says I'm new to handguns. I've shot several over the years but never owned one. I'm now looking to finally purchase one and that's where I need your help. I'm pretty sure I'm looking for a 9mm because ammo is plentiful and the caliber will be something my wife can handle as well.

    I'm looking for suggestions that fit the following:
    Reliable [probably an older name brand (colt, s&w, glock, sig, colt, etc)as I'm not up on "new" brands]
    Simple to breakdown / maintain
    Ability to add a laser sight (my eyes aren't what they used to be)
    Easy to handle (not too heavy / easy to aim)
    Price tag +/- 500 - 600

    This would be generally used as a range gun and HD (hopefully never used for that). I don't plan to carry it so a short barrel isn't a must.

    Thanks in advance for your suggestions.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012
  2. mesinge2

    mesinge2 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2009
    Messages:
    2,219
    Location:
    Central Florida
    Adding your price range will help us give you suggestions, but:

    A S&W M&P, Springfield XD or XDm, Glock 17 or 19, Beretta 92A1 / M9A1 or Px4 Storm, Ruger SR9 or a number of other makes will do you just fine.

    The best way to tell is to make a list and try them out until you find one that fits YOU.

    The one you're most comfortable with at the range. I personally prefer the M&P series from S&W and the 92 series from Beretta but a Glock, Ruger, or Springfield will do you just fine if it is what fits the bill.

    Also, my list is far from inclusive as there are many many more, like CZ for example.
     
  3. Skylerbone

    Skylerbone Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2010
    Messages:
    3,379
    My best advice would be to buy based on your wife's needs first. Size, weight, ergonomics and ability to manipulate controls are often bigger hurdles so make sure she spearheads the decision.

    Size. Intuition leads us to compact and that can lead to disappointment. Overcoming an extra 4-6 lbs. of force with a stiffer recoil spring makes for a frustrated wife, I know this firsthand.

    Weight. Lightweight pistols exhibit more felt recoil. Even in 9mm with its snappy signature can lead the shooter to believe controlling the pistol is impossible.

    Ergonomics. It's more than can she grip it firmly or reach the safety. Are the slide serrations too aggressive and "cutting" while racking? Is the magazine release easily depressed?

    If I were privy to the usage of a time machine and could go back a few years my wife might have been shooting a SigPro 2022. I say might because the mission to find her the right pistol left a few wrong candidates on my side of the safe. Still not sure that benefit was worth the frustration and the initial turn-off for her with shooting.

    Bottom line in my opinion, getting her involved means better odds of both of you staying active in shooting. Patronizing as I learned is met with resistance.
     
  4. ku4hx

    ku4hx Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    2,794
    Some ranges rent guns and some gun clubs sponsor new shooter programs. I'd suggest you and wife investigate both.
     
  5. Tcruse

    Tcruse Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2011
    Messages:
    535
    Rent as many as possible, then make your choice.
    My suggested list to try is
    1) Glock 17,19,26
    2) Ruger SR9, SR9C, P95
    3) S&W MP9
    4) Baretta PX4, 92FS
    5) Tarus PT92
    6) Caracal F, C
    7) Springfield XDm (I really am not a fan of this gun, but seems that may like it)

    There are several list on the web, search google "best 9mm Pistol".
    http://www.best9mm.com/ is one list that I have used several times.
     
  6. el Godfather

    el Godfather Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2012
    Messages:
    1,686
    Based upon your conditions- Glock 19 period.
     
  7. BearGriz

    BearGriz Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2011
    Messages:
    182
    Location:
    Utah
    Exactly! Because all other options are ridiculous...I don't even know why other manufacturers even try. What works for some other people is bound to work for everyone. The grip angle, balance, pointing of the Glock, etc. are going work perfectly for the OP because Glocks are da' bomb...period!

    The Glock 19 is a great weapon (my father has had one for years), and I like it a lot. I might own one someday. It definitely should be one that the OP looks at and considers, but I think they would be best served to handle many of the great options out there (as others have suggested) and see what fits in their hand.
     
  8. Tcruse

    Tcruse Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2011
    Messages:
    535
    Well, lets not forget about the Glock 17 and the Glock 26. The last person that I convinced that the G19 was the right choice, did not like it at all. Instead, he picked the Gen4 G17.
     
  9. Ehtereon11B

    Ehtereon11B internet infantryman

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2012
    Messages:
    983
    Since when is Glock an older name brand? Compared to Colt, Smith, and Springfield...Glocks are the angry punk teenagers with purple mohawks.

    I will say go off your wife's needs first. If it is going to be a firearm that you both are going to be proficient on, it will be harder for her to find something she likes. Just don't get something all pink to appease her. It doesn't look good at the range.

    Reading your criteria I can't help but think J-frame. Then I see 9mm, that makes it harder. Taurus makes a 9mm revolver called the 905. Would fit all your needs including the ability to add a grip laser.

    Larger pistols such as G19, 17, 92FS will be harder for your wife to use since they have a much larger grip. I would recommend a pistol with removable back straps which narrows down the list quiet a bit.
     
  10. BearGriz

    BearGriz Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2011
    Messages:
    182
    Location:
    Utah
    I love my Taurus 905, but I have to admit that it kicks pretty hard (harder than a semi). The wife might not like that. Also, don't let 5 round capacity on the 905 scare you. They have some moon clips that make reloading wicked fast.
     
  11. Plan2Live

    Plan2Live Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1,681
    Location:
    Columbia, SC
    Take a look at the XDm 3.8 Compact. It meets all of your criteria. It is nearly identical in size to some of the other suggestions but has some extra features one brand in particular doesn't have. The grip safety on the XDm adds a certain peace of mind, especially when holstering if you do it the right way and take advantage of the grip safety. The visual and tactile loaded chamber and cocked indicators beat the heck out of a "press check". And, you don't have to pull the trigger to take it apart for cleaning. We had a 62 year-old gentleman fatally wound himself less than two weeks ago at a local indoor shooting range while "disassembling" his.....extremely popular semi-automatic pistol that requires the trigger to be pulled to take the slide off the frame.

    My XDm Compact has been 100% reliable, is easy to take apart for cleaning and feels like a tank. Take a look, you wont be disappointed.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012
  12. Walking Dead

    Walking Dead Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2011
    Messages:
    491
    Location:
    North Texas
    I think you just described a Glock 19.
     
  13. Kabal

    Kabal Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    Messages:
    106
    Location:
    Germany
    I wouldn't propose a compact handgun for the range or home defense.

    Neither situation requires the pistol to be particularly small or light-weight.
    On the contrary. In general, handguns with longer barrels/slides and a little more weight are easier to shoot accurately. They also tend to have less recoil, which might be good for the wife.
    My girlfriend weighs 105 lbs and has no problems shooting my CZ Viper, which weighs close to 3 pounds with a few rounds in the magazine.

    I'd take a steel frame gun over a polymer gun. My vote goes to the CZ 75 SP-01 Shadow.

    However, personal preferences seem to be quite different (cf. http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=685886), so the best thing to do would be to try out as many of the guns mentioned here as possible before buying one.
     
  14. BYJO4

    BYJO4 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Messages:
    1,776
    Based on your price range and intended use, a Glock could very well meet your needs. Several models to choose from. Good luck finding what you like.
     
  15. Shadow 7D

    Shadow 7D Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Messages:
    7,005
    Location:
    Frozen North
    A RANGE THAT RENTS GUNS
    seriously
    you are going to buy one,
    find out what you like better
    buy another
    then another

    the perfect gun don't exist, but it's fun looking....
     
  16. el Godfather

    el Godfather Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2012
    Messages:
    1,686
    Beargriz, ha ha aha. Thats all I can say.

    To OP, again, "based upon your condition" in mu opinion Glock 19 period.

    For FYI
    I own over 100 handguns and they are not all Glocks. I recommended Glock because in my opinion it fits the bill. Had he more budget an want gun for some other elaborate use I would have recommended something else.

    Just saying go try them all is just passing the damn buck. Off course he can and should try other pistols, but he is here on THR and asking for our advice rather. Which is what we would pick under the conditions laid out by the OP, and everyone here has the right to respond- OP has the option to go with the advice he finds best for him.
     
  17. tarosean

    tarosean Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Messages:
    5,403
    Location:
    TX
    You meant Zikha & Co., Saf-T-hammer, and Reese Surplus? Their names live on, but all are relatively "new"..


    As for the OP, go to the largest dealer you can find and hold every gun in your price range.
     
  18. ActionJax

    ActionJax Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2010
    Messages:
    83
    For DA/SA, Sig p229 (or p226) in 9mm. Also available is a .22LR kit for practice, cheap ammo, and wife-friendliness. I have one and love love love it.

    For extra simplicity, a Glock G17 would be my second choice (or similar Springfield XD)
     
  19. Hunter125

    Hunter125 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2009
    Messages:
    599
    Location:
    central IL
    Be cautious with the Caracal, they were recently recalled for not being dropsafe. If you are interested in a Caracal be sure to do your research.
     
  20. coolluke01

    coolluke01 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,041
    Location:
    MN
    I'm looking for suggestions that fit the following:
    Reliable [probably an older name brand (colt, s&w, glock, sig, colt, etc)as I'm not up on "new" brands] All those are good brands, but some have guns that will not fit the bill for you. Most make a reliable gun that will suit your needs

    Simple to breakdown / maintain There is nothing more simple than a Glock to detail strip

    Ability to add a laser sight (my eyes aren't what they used to be) I would say Glock again. Front rail and more aftermarket parts than any other gun

    Easy to handle (not too heavy / easy to aim) Most polymer guns will fit this. Low bore axis and grip angle will be things to look at. Learn a proper grip before choosing a gun. Testing a gun with a poor grip will not likely lead you to the gun you should have.

    Price tag +/- 500 - 600 There are many guns that will fall in your price range. You don't need to spend more to get what you want. You could buy used to save some money.

    I would look at the Gen 4 Glocks for the replaceable backstraps. This will help you and your wife shoot.

    Good luck and shoot as many as you can before you choose. Don't worry about used guns. It can be a good way to get a first gun.
     
  21. Plan2Live

    Plan2Live Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1,681
    Location:
    Columbia, SC
    Since the OP is new to handguns, let's keep him focused and provide full disclosure.
    Detail strip differs from field strip. Field strippping is all most shooters will ever need to do to keep their guns clean and functioning properly. With that in mind, the XDm field strips easier than the G-lock because the XDm does not force you to pull the trigger to remove the slide. On very important step eliminated.

    A rail is a rail. A rail mounted accessory does not care which frame it is riding under.

    As many have stated, there are numerous options for you. As you described your situation you need to meet the needs of two people. So the two of you need to go out and SHOOT as many guns as possible before making a decision. Find a rental range and rent a few different platforms including Double Action triggers, Single Action triggers, Hammer Fired guns and Striker fired guns or go to a local public range and watch other people shoot and ask them about their guns, many will probably offer to let you shoot their guns.

    Then, go on Youtube and search your top picks. Search things like field stripping. Watch closely and make sure you want to perform each of those steps as a new shooter.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2012
  22. Baldman

    Baldman Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Messages:
    169
    Location:
    SE PA
    Thanks

    Guys,

    Thanks for the responses, sounds like I've got more options them I thought. Looks like we'll be doing some test driving some guns in the next few weeks, I think that might be just a little bit of fun. I'll let you know what we end up with.
     
  23. Kahr33556

    Kahr33556 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Messages:
    210
    Location:
    USA
    smith M&P 9, springfield XD 9,Glock 19, CZ also makes a nice gun
     
  24. Tcruse

    Tcruse Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2011
    Messages:
    535
    "Since when is Glock an older name brand? Compared to Colt, Smith, and Springfield..."
    Yes, but Springfield that is on the market today is only an importer (and some assembly/fitting on the high end 1911s). They make nothing, just import guns made in countries with cheap labor. SpringField XD is made in Coatia and was orgininally sold for much less before the "Springfield" label was added.
    When speaking of modern non-metal frame guns, Glock is the first that has been successful.
     
  25. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2011
    Messages:
    3,464
    A small suggestion: when you buy your 9mm, go ahead and buy a .22 pistol along with it. You will learn to be a much better shooter if you spend most of your time with the .22. Ammo is so cheap that it's almost free (~$8/100 rounds for very good quality stuff), so you'll practice more, but you'll also be able to overcome any flinching issues you or your wife may have much faster if you have a .22 to work with.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page