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what is the best carry gun for females??

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Safety First, Jan 3, 2003.

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  1. Safety First

    Safety First Member

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    OK guys and gals,What carry gun do you reccomend for the fairer sex?? or at least the prettiest! I would like to teach my wife to shoot and many people seem to think a wheel gun is better for the ladies as the slide on most auto's is a little difficult to chamber.. would appreciate your thoughts...
     
  2. Tamara

    Tamara Senior Member

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    Well...

    I like my 3" 629 loaded with Georgia Arms 240gr Gold Dots... ;)

    How big are her hands? How strong is she? How much shooting experience does she have? How much practice is she going to put in?

    Saying "what's a good gun for females?" without the above data is kind of like saying "what's a good gun for males?"
     
  3. 2dogs

    2dogs Member

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    Seems that whatever she feels most comfortable with would be best- if it were me I'd have her try several and let her decide.
     
  4. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    I agree with Tamara that it is hard to generalize, but I'll go with the revolver. I think the one I used to carry, a 3" barrel .38 Chiefs Special, would be a good choice. The longer barrel gives better pointing characteristics, and that is the usual situation when a woman needs a gun. Women (police and military aside) are not usually going to engage targets at 25-50 yards; they need a gun when things get up close and dirty. Still, a very short barrel, though less likely to be snatched, is poor for pointing.

    If a larger gun is an option, the K frame .357 (Model 19) is OK. IMHO, "ladies' guns" (.25 autos and the like) are worse than useless and give false confidence. They are guns for experts.

    FWIW, I don't recommend purse carry unless there is no other choice. The purse itself is the target of thieves and it can be left behind (although my wife says no woman EVER forgets her purse!).

    If wearing a suit, carry choices are the same as for men; with a skirt, an inside thigh holster (does anyone make them any more?) works well. Slacks and a sheer blouse leave only an ankle holster as a reasonable choice, since women's slacks don't have the loose fit men's trousers have. I know about more exotic carry locations, but most are just not practical.

    Women have a problem men usually do not. Namely that a man can usually avoid being "made" even if there is a slight bulge, because no one is really looking. That may or may not be the case with a woman.

    Jim
     
  5. priv8ter

    priv8ter Member

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    Delicate ground

    Well, since I have seen some females at the gun range that enjoy recoil a lot more than I do, I am going to stay away from much talk of caliber.

    The only female I can really talk about is my wife. SHe has proven herself to be a competent shot with both my H&K .40, and 'her' Ruger Mk II. Of those, she enjoys shooting the Mk II much more, but knows that while a .22 is deffinetly a killer, it is not the mind of stopper she should carry.

    So, right now we are looking for something in one of the following calibers for her:

    .32 H&R Magnum
    .38 Special
    .380 ACP
    9X18 Mak
    9mm Luger
    I'm not sure she would shoot a Kahr sized .40 enough to get good with it.

    As for the 'prettiest' gun. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But, all the same, my wife is attracted to the asthetic qualities of a firearm, which is strange, since it is for CONCEALED CARRY, and no one is supposed to it. That being said, because I want to keep her happy, we are leaning towards a Taurus Model 85 UL that my local gun shop has in stock, with the rosewood grips, and gold trim on the moving parts. Very attractive gun.

    Good luck to you, and make sure you have her hold it before you buy it for her. Even better would be shooting it, but I have found that the rental range's around here don't always have what I would consider 'carry' guns for rent.
     
  6. Felonious Monk

    Felonious Monk Member

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    I'm going to tell you my current experience, and hope you will understand that's ALL it is. People are not all the same, and you have to take the individual into account.


    I bought a P32 for my wife for Christmas.
    We're going 'r e a l' slow with the process.
    She's been handling it, pulling back the slide, lining up the sight picture.
    She's asking questions.

    I'm giving her an understanding of Jeff Cooper's 'color code', having her balance a dime on the slide as she lines up the sights, and introducing the 4 rules.

    We're going to shoot my little HP22 first, with full eye and ear protection. When she's comfortable with that, we'll graduate to her P32, and make sure she's comfortable with it. Once she's doing well with it, we'll also shoot the rest of the arsenal. If she decides she likes one of the revo's better, it's hers. If she likes the P11 better, ditto.

    In any case, I would feel TOTALLY unable to steward this process, without the time I've spent at TFL and THR. Thanks to all, and please provide input if I'm leaving anything out of the teaching process.

    Safety First, Tam's a PhD, I'm in grade school when it comes to this stuff. Hope this helps.

    Thanks,
    FM
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2003
  7. JPM70535

    JPM70535 Member

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    I'm not sure I would recommend a J frame revolver to a novice shooter,especially a woman. Recoil with the J frame snubbies is considerably sharper with factory 38s than a K frame like a model 19 snubbie. The extra weight isn't enough to prohibit its use as a carry piece, but it will dampen the felt recoil. Concealed carry on person by a female is much harder to accomplish due to the female anatomy but with proper clothing it can be done. Purse carry IMO should be a last resort, since if the purse goes bye bye so does the gun.
     
  8. Tamara

    Tamara Senior Member

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    For example...

    Among fellow female HighRoaders, I know of a G26, an SP101, a couple of USP 45Cs, and a Kimber Classic Custom, among others. I have a friend who doesn't tote often, but loves her Witness Silver Team.

    My daily CCW is a 296Ti in my purse (aluminum/titanium DAO .44 Special L-frame) and a Beretta 950BS Jetfire in a pocket, usually accompanied by something or other on my belt.

    Here's the 296Ti...
     
  9. P12

    P12 Member

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    My wife is a good shot with my Commander (when I had it) my P12-45, my Llama Micromax 380 and her Taurus 85.

    She's ok with the 45s. (when she shoots her CHL qualifier she will use my P12)
    She hates the Micromax (hurts to much)
    She likes the Taurus because it cuter.

    She cant get into the "semi" thing. To complicated.

    What ever you do, don't choose for her! :uhoh: Of course that way you could wind up with some extra toys, after she rejects them.

    Hmmm, I think I'll go shoping!:D
     
  10. Forseti

    Forseti Member

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    If she is inexperienced, best to go to a range that rents, and rent a hammerless snubnose .38, and let her try it out against a compact 9mm semiauto of some type.

    Let her do ALL the work with both guns...loading, slide manipulation on the semiauto...show her how, but let HER do it.

    Most gravitate to the revolver at that point, simply because they can manipulate it better (in the case of some semiautos, some just can't move the slide).

    There are a lot of companies that make this type, but I prefer the concealed hammer .38 for most (not all) women. Mostly because its a reasonable shooter, and they can use it/load it without much trouble.

    Lots of companies make them in different variations...here is an example from Taurus (easiest one for me to grab a pic from...check out the other manufacturers as well) I like hammerless for consistant trigger pull when practicing (most people start to "cheat" while practicing by pulling back the hammer first...unlikely in an emergency), and the prevention of hooking on stuff in a purse.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2003
  11. braindead0

    braindead0 Member

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    You might try finding a handgun defense class for women. My wife took one (well, it was coed and she made me go too) and they had dozens of different revolvers, encouraged everyone to try different ones..

    A few months later, she took the semi-auto class and got to try a bunch of different semis... (I helped out at the range on that one).

    Plus, it helps a lot.. I think.. to have a 3rd party involved..
     
  12. sm

    sm member

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    Tamara

    Makes a good point about the "myth" of what women shoot. Notice what she and her friends carry?

    Females:
    New shooters I'm familiar with are normally CHL students, Husbands and BF's sometimes makes the firearm choice, intimidate themby teaching... etc--A lose-lose deal. With real good hearing protection we'll start off with aModel 18 (22lr) then move to a semi 22lr. Early on the lady gets a feel for MOA.
    We go to larger calibers, MOA. When a female finds HER preference in a platform in a caliber with consistent hits--BINGO!
    We have someone that will practice, and continue to learn. They get a good carry set up (s). They learn a BUG or something when wardrobe dictates. Actually better than some men about always carrying.
     
  13. Diesle

    Diesle Member

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    My wife digs her Taurus pt-25. I like it too. Easy for a 'chick' because you dont have to rack the slide to fire it.

    Similar to a Baretta m21.

    Diesle
     
  14. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    Tamara is right. More over, whether or not the person who intends to get the gun is a male or female is not all that relevant. Relevant factors would include gun handling experience, body strenght, hand size, hand strength, vision (relative to sights), how they plan on carrying the gun, whether or not they intend to practice with it, etc.

    My wife doesn't carry, but her favorite is a full-sized 1911 and she has a belt and holster she uses while at the range.

    My mom who is in her late 60s decided to go with a gun that several people told her might not be a good choice because of the amount of recoil. That gun was a Glock 26 or Baby Glock - a small 9 mm gun. She found she could shoot it better than any of the larger 9 mm Glocks (which seemed counter intuitive since the larger Glocks would have less felt recoil, but the clincher was the grip size fitting her hand).

    Given those constraints, a good rule of thumb to consider is that she carry a gun of the largest caliber that she can handle very well, in a gun that is very reliable, and one that is suited to her carry needs and constraints.

    For my mom, we took her to a range that rented guns and tried several. Then, a young lady in the lane next to us had heard us discussing which to try next and she offered to let my mom shoot her Glock 26. As if blessed by God, the first 8 of 10 shots were perfect and the two bad shots weren't all that bad and would have still been in the A zone. The distance was 7 yards. That size and configuration just meshed very well with her size of hands, body strength and even arthritis. That is what she has and she continues to shoot it well.
     
  15. Kahr carrier

    Kahr carrier Member

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    Interesting subject ,my sister likes shooting my Combat Commander 45 acp and my mom has been know to shoot my Redhawk 44 Magnum . I think all new shooters could benefit from a firearms safety class to start. Then I would start them out with a 22lr and let them get comfortable shooting and then I would find a range that has gun rentals and let them try different types of guns and calibers to see what they are comfortable with. Also Tamaras 44 Smith looks like an interesting hide out gun.:what:
     
  16. sixgun_symphony

    sixgun_symphony member

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    S&W K-frame .38 Special revolver with four inch barrel would be a good defensive weapon for anyone.
     
  17. pax

    pax Member

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    Everyone's pretty well covered the salient points: don't pick a gun for her, but let her pick her own. Every woman is different. Her gender doesn't matter as much as her hand size, experience, hand and arm strength, etc.

    I don't really agree with pushing a new shooter toward a revolver, unless she gravitates that direction herself. Partly that's because revolvers just never appealed to me, personally. More than that, though, is the thought that if she doesn't end up deciding what she decides because she decided it, she won't be happy enough with the choice to practice regularly and get good. She'll be unhappy when the gun comes out, and make all kinds of excuses as to why (not wanting to hurt your feelings).

    If she likes the look & feel of a semi-auto, but has a hard time with the slide, remember that racking a slide is not so much a matter of strength, but of familiarity and technique. If she tries to muscle it back with just the strength of one hand, she may not be able to do it; but if you show her how to push with her right hand while holding or pulling very slightly with her left, it won't be nearly so difficult. (Something easier shown than told -- I hope that sentence made sense....)

    I've got friends who just love the magic little mag-loader gadgets that take a lot of the painful work out of loading a stiff mag. If she has a hard time loading a mag, by all means get her the gadget and let her use it. The chances of her needing to load a magazine (as opposed to replacing a spent magazine with a previously-loaded one) under duress is vanishingly small.

    Me? I carry and love my G26 in 9mm. Fits my hand, yes. But I fell in love with her because she's so doggone cute.

    And yes, cute matters. :D

    pax

    I declare to you that woman must not depend upon the protection of man, but must be taught to protect herself, and there I take my stand. -- Susan B. Anthony
     
  18. sm

    sm member

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    Reading this thread again

    We actually have covered points for choosing a gun for anyone, regardless of gender, age, physical condition, experience.

    Asked why we start with a 22 revolver for new shooters, I'll clarify. Simply the new shooter can visually see if loaded, how it works and takes some of the mystery and misconceptions away. Also its easier for trigger control because we put a dime on front sight and let them run a cylinder (s) through with out falling off--revolver allows this. Coupled with good hearing protection, and 22lr , no percieved recoil and focus on trigger, sight, techniques.
     
  19. Captain Bligh

    Captain Bligh Member

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    I generally try not to comment on women's issues because I don't have the parts for it. But, I think the best carry gun for a female is the one she shoots the best, likes the best, and can conceal the best.

    By the way, Tamara, I know beauty is in the eye of the beholder but that humpback is one ugly gun! ;)

    RJ
     
  20. Baba Louie

    Baba Louie Member

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    Buy her one of each, let her try each one out, keeping the one she likes best.

    You keep the rest.:D

    Adios
     
  21. Mastrogiacomo

    Mastrogiacomo Member

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    Advice from another woman shooter -- let the wife decide. I was pushed to a .38 model 442 S&W and I HATE THE :cuss: GUN!! Later I came to my senses and bought a Beretta compact type M, which was so beautiful at the range, I went out and bought another one in black! Never assume you know what a woman should use. If she's firing the gun it should be her decision. The arguement about a revolver can stay in the closet forever and doesn't need maintence is a load of :cuss: A gun that doesn't get used won't do a damn thing when the time comes to take it out. A pistol isn't the hardest thing in the world to maintain (such as the Beretta which is easy to up keep and use). If you can find a place to rent guns, let her give it a try and make her own mind up. :D
     
  22. Ala Dan

    Ala Dan Member in memoriam

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    Greeting's Safety First-

    Hey, that's a catchy handle my friend! It all depends on
    what a female feels her needs are; plus what type of
    firearm she shoot's the best, and as a secondary note
    what she feels most comfortable with? I've help train some
    gal's that simply could not handle a .22 LR; either semi-
    auto or revolver!:scrutiny: On the other hand, I've seen
    some women that were really proficent with the 9m/m Glock
    19's and SIG P228's. A female police officer (friend of mine)
    routinely carries a .45 caliber Glock 21; on and off duty.
    You had better believe, she knows how to use it too!

    Most women, want something lite weight and kind'a
    compact; such as the aforementioned self-loader's, or
    a small J frame size revolver. One thing for sure, I think
    I would have any female stray away for the Ti and Sc
    revolver's as made by Smith & Wesson and Taurus.
    Simply put, they are very erratic in trained hand's;
    and uncontrolable in the hand's of petite
    female's. If they desire a revolver, look at something
    along the lines of a Smith & Wesson 2" barrel model
    36 or 60. If they want a .357 magnum (which a lot of
    'em do), I would recommend the S&W model 19 or 66
    with a 2.5" barrel. Ultimately, patience and practice
    will help anyone become proficent with the handgun!

    Best Wishes,
    Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member
     
  23. Mastrogiacomo

    Mastrogiacomo Member

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    Have her fire the revolver first if she's leaning towards one. That might change her tune quick when her hands get a taste of the bite. :D
     
  24. QB

    QB Member

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    VERY VERY good posts so far. I love this forum!!!!

    I am 5' 6" & I guess considered medium build. My older sister is 4'11" (she says 5' of course) and of small build. We both shoot anything from a .380 to a 10mm (in fact I just picked up a Glock 20C today).

    We are both semi-auto people and absolutely hate revolvers (please, I'm not bashing revolvers). Just something about semi-autos that we love.

    With that said, I carry different guns depending on my dress but they range from an HK45C to a Colt Pony Pocketlite.

    Of all my guns, the .380s (blowback or not) are the hardest to rack the slide. My sister can rack the slide of all my guns (10mm, .45, 9mm) EXCEPT for my .380 caliber Sphinx. She just has trouble with that gun for whatever reasons. Yet she grabs one of my Colt Special Combats and just racks the gun with ease. So please don't steer a female to "revolvers" based on the perception that it is hard for a woman to rack the slide. It really depends on the gun & as someone else mentioned, it's a lot about technique rather than strength. It's also about familiarity and not being timid about handling the gun. Some of the new females shooters I have taken to the range begin out my handling the gun like an egg....afraid it's gonna break. By the end of the first lesson they're slamming the mag in the gun and slingshotting the slide like a banshee....ha ha ha!!!!! I think they rather get off on their newly found "power" :eek:

    I must admit that I am OBSESSED with my guns so I practice alot and handle my guns alot.

    Hope your wife finds what she likes but if not, try something else. I've churned guns for years now and still buy some that I don't like for one reason or the other. I just "take the loss" and trade em in on something else. I found that I don't shoot what I don't like!!!!!

    Good luck.
     
  25. sonoranjack

    sonoranjack member

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    Every new shooter should start w/ revolver .38 cal w/ 4" barrel. This should be a learning handgun until the new shooter learns to put into practice the safety rules. Once the new shooter learns to put into practice the safety rules. Then the new shooter should get what ever handgun the new shooter likes.
     
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