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Beginner to intermedia handgun recommedations

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by RifleEnthusiast, Jun 9, 2012.

  1. RifleEnthusiast

    RifleEnthusiast Close to Oregon City Active Member

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    I am looking for caliber and handgun model recommendations for a newbie, I want something that is not expensive to shoot, is of good quality, reasonably accurate and is mostly for shooting at the range. I hear quite a bit about Glock but I have no idea.
  2. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    Newbie gun, one to keep for a life time of fun:
    Pistol Ruger 22/45. Ruger mark 3, both excellent fun and super training firearms. current price under 4 cents a round with average ammo.
    You shoot a lot cheap.
  3. biggie24420

    biggie24420 Beaverton Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Glocks are for "professionals" (people with experience)..... IMO it's because it has no external safety you can turn on and off. If you learn about the Glock and don't do something stupid like carrying condition 1 (one in the pipe) without a good holster, you will be fine. So if you practice gun safety and fallow the rules a Glock can be a good beginner gun because they are priced decent, SIMPLE, and reliable.
    I think a Glock 19 would be a great choice.... or a Glock 26 if you have small hands. If you use good personal defense ammo for conceal carry, the 9mm will be just fine (don't get in the caliber hype). I personally have a Glock 23 that is a compact like the 19 and it shoots the .40 cal. I have a conversion barrel and I can shoot 9mm so it's like a Glock 19...... I have two pistols in one. You have options when you go with a Glock in a bigger caliber because you can shoot different calibers by having conversion capabilities. With my G23 I can shoot 9mm, .40, .357 sig. I can go from 11 round all the way up to 33 round capacity in 9mm or 9 to 22 in .40 caliber...... options options options.

    My way of thinking is a "system" way of thinking..... I have same caliber Glocks, use the same mags, ammo, conversions barrels, holsters, lights etc. So I want to get the most bang for my buck.
  4. slicediceputinrice

    slicediceputinrice SE Portland Active Member

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    So someone who is not a "professional" and has access to a Glock is more likely to point the weapon at his self or another person and pull the trigger because it has no external safety? Whatever happened to keeping your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot and always keeping the muzzle pointed in a safe direction? or do you have to be a professional to know basic gun safety?
  5. RifleEnthusiast

    RifleEnthusiast Close to Oregon City Active Member

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    So is the 17 the bigger size vs the 19? I am also seeing a 19 vs a 19C. I definitely do not have small hands.
  6. biggie24420

    biggie24420 Beaverton Oregon Well-Known Member

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    No what I am saying is that a lot of people say OH NO DON'T GET A GLOCK, IT'S NOT SAFE. I think that is BS just because the gun does not have an external safety. I personally don't like external safety and I think it can cause a deadly delay. I hear a lot of people recommend to beginners that they should get something with external safety because the gun is safer.

    No you don't have to be a pro to know basic gun safety. I was trying to be funny by saying you have to be a pro because that is what I used to hear from a lot of people. I was told to avoid a Glock because it has no safety, before I go my first Glock and I was new to guns.

    So as a beginner, one should be educated on what they intend to carry and not worry about physical safety on the gun but understand how the firearm works and act in a safe manor.
  7. biggie24420

    biggie24420 Beaverton Oregon Well-Known Member

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    The 17 is the full size "duty". The 19 is the compact, and the 26 is the baby Glock/subcompact.

    So since you got bigger hands, a G17 would work. They also have the Glock 34 Glock 34 | GLOCK USA but it's a full size grip with a longer slide.

    The 19 and the 19C.... the 19c is compensated I believe so it helps with muzzle flip but on a 9mm pistol I don't think it's that big of a deal to have compensation. I did have a .40 caliber pistol compensated, it shot smoother because it had less muzzle flip but it was a .40 cal and it was snappy. I think a G19C would be a second type of cool, and if you can get your hands on, I'd say go for it.
  8. M67

    M67 NW Oregon Active Member

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    I depends on what your primary use of the handgun will be. If you plan on just plinking/target shooting a 22LR handgun would be the best bet.
    But if you plan on using the handgun for home defense,concealed carry or hiking in the woods, etc... that is a different matter.

    Once you decide on a caliber, go to a large gun shop or gun show, or shooting range where you can rent handguns to shoot, so you can handle and shoot the firearms as much as possible to see what you prefer and works best for you.

    Here are a few models of 22LR and 9mm's i could think off the top of my head, and all are excellent quality handguns.

    There is a lot of quality 22LR handguns to choose from, like -

    Sig Mosquito
    Smith & Wesson 22A
    Ruger 22/45
    Ruger mark 3
    Browning Buck Mark

    As for a larger caliber handgun in 9mm which are the cheapest centerfire to shoot and much better for home defense/concealed carry, some of these would be excellent choices -

    Keep in mind that some of these 9mm's have different size grips that come with the handgun or are available, to accommodate shooters with small, medium or large hands.

    Sig Sauer sp2022
    S&W M&P

    Have fun with your search and take your time, so you get exactly what you want.
  9. Ironbar

    Ironbar Tigard, OR Well-Known Member

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    To the OP:

    1) Go to the Clackamas County Public Safety Training Center
    2) Fill out requisite paperwork
    3) Rent pistol of your choice in caliber of your choice
    4) Shoot pistol at their range
    4a) If you don't like that particular pistol/caliber, repeat steps 3 and 4
    5) Decide which pistol and caliber you like best
    6) Go to sporting goods or gun store, and purchase pistol
    Wifey and (deleted member) like this.
  10. EZLivin

    EZLivin SW of PDX Well-Known Member

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    Yup. Intended use, and what feels good in your hand.

    Those who are concerned about Glock-style safeties might consider getting a Saf-T-Blok. It is simple, effective, and fairly inexpensive.
  11. Redcap

    Redcap Lewis County, WA Well-Known Member

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  12. M67

    M67 NW Oregon Active Member

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    jmho- But that is just crazy talk. Lots of handguns like, Glock, Sig Sauer, S&W's, etc.... do not have external safeties and are carried by millions of people without any problems. They are no different than carrying a double action revolver.
  13. Misterbill

    Misterbill Yakima County, Washington New Member

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    I would recommend a gun that has a main caliber and a conversion kit (a slide, barrel, recoil spring, guide rod and magazine) for .22.

    A SIG Sauer P229 would fill this bill very well and give you a solid 9mm or .40 carry piece that you can also train with using .22 for essentially zero cost for a day at the range.

    If you're looking for a straight centerfire range-only gun that will be an excellent learning platform and relatively cheap to shoot, I would highly recommend a Beretta 92FS in 9mm. Mine has had thousands of rounds through it with not a single FTE or FTF and I can shoot apples with it at 25 yards effortlessly.

    Another less expensive recommendation would be a Springfield XD (full-size) in 9mm.

    As for Glocks, I love them, but the new triggers on the gen fours frankly suck.

    As a new pistol shooter, you need to remember that every element you put in adds challenge to how well you're going to do.

    1. Caliber
    2. Weight of gun (airwieght guns are NOT fun to shoot with higher-caliber ammo due to relative recoil)
    3. Sight radius (distance between front and rear sights)
    4. barrel length (longer is easier, in general)
  14. jonn5335

    jonn5335 Longview Active Member

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    Have you thought about a wheel gun/revolver I would say that would be a very good choice for a beginner pistol in whatever caliber you seem fitting
    ogre and (deleted member) like this.
  15. FortunateSon

    FortunateSon Marion County Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Ruger P95 - The gun is built like a tank and will shoot anything you feed it, is full-sized for larger hands, and 9MM ammo is pretty cheap, especially if you shop the sales and stock up. This is a great gun for beginners and will cost you only slightly more than 3 bills.

    +1 on the Ruger 22/45. The gun is affordable and ammo is dirt cheap. These are a blast to shoot.
  16. Vantage

    Vantage Pacific Standard Time Active Member

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    This is the best answer.

    If you lived more south I'd say to go to Baron's Den and rent/shoot there.

    when you ask a "Best Gun" question you are going to get the phone book for answers. It's like saying, "What's the best vehicle to own". In the gun community there are those that are loyal to a specific caliber, there are those that are big fans of a specific brand, or model of gun. There are those that are adamant about Concealed Carry and there are those that are adamant about Open Carry.

    Things to consider: And these are "General Statements"...

    The larger the gun the bigger the capacity to hold more rounds. Which means less time to reload a new magazine when you're mowing down hordes of zombies.
    The larger the gun, the heavier it will be.
    The heavier it is, the less felt recoil you will feel.

    The smaller the gun the easier it is to conceal. Maybe that's a concern for you maybe it's not.
    The smaller the gun the less it weighs. and again, the easier it is to conceal.
    The smaller the gun, the less ammo it will carry.
    The smaller the gun the more recoil you're going to feel.

    There are exceptions to almost every item that I have listed, but generally speaking they are correct.

    After all of that... some guns just feel better in the hand to one person than another. It's just a matter of personal taste. And what feels good when held in your hand might not feel so great after you shoot it. So find a range that rents guns and handle as many as you can, and then shoot as many as you can.

    My suggestion to you would be to get a Ruger SR22. or a Smith and Wesson M&P 9c

    and here are my reasons why.

    The Ruger SR22 is a .22lr DA/SA pistol (Google that if you don't know what it means)
    *Unlike some of the other .22lr models listed, the SR22 looks, feels and operates much like a regular carry pistol would look/feel/operate.

    * It has ambidextrous controls so if a wife/girlfriend/friend who's a lefty, and wants to shoot with it, they can work the controls just like you can.
    * .22lr is so cheap you can buy 500 rounds for $17.00 and shoot ALL DAY LONG and have a blast doing it.
    * It's not the greatest caliber for self defense but any gun is better than no gun. Plus you can always trade it or sell it after you feel your ready to move up to a larger caliber.

    Next up the Smith and Wesson M&P9c

    * If you are new to shooting then you need to shoot as much as you can as often as you can and the cheapest round to shoot (other than .22lr) in large quantities is the 9mm. The 9mm is also considered (by most) to be as small as you want to go for a defensive caliber. On sale you can get them for about $10.00 for a box of 50. Retail, the price goes up from there depending on what you want to buy.
    * The M&P9c is middle of the road as far as size goes. It's not the biggest and it's not the smallest. My wife did not like shooting my full size M&P, but she likes the m&P9c. Plus, you can buy extended magazines that have grip extensions that turn it into a full sized grip for when you're at the range or whatever.
    * The smaller size is also a good fit if you ever decide to get a Concealed Carry license. No change required.

    * The M&P has ambidextrous controls as well. The safeties are on both sides and are easy to keep your thumb on when firing.

    The Rugers SR22 is available at my local gun shop for $340.00
    The M&P's are around $475 to $500.

    Both models come with adjustable grips to fit different hand sizes.
    My .02

    Ruger SR22
    Ruger SR22 Pistol Review - YouTube

    .22 Handgun for Self-Defense? CCI 40 gr Mini-Mag Test - YouTube

    S&W M&P9c
    Smith & Wesson M&P 9c - Full Review of an Exceptional Pistol - YouTube
  17. bikejunkie

    bikejunkie Salem Well-Known Member

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    I started my wife out on a Sig Sauer Mosquito- but she greatly prefers to shoot my Sig Sauer P238HD 380ACP carry pistol. I personally started shooting pistols with the Beretta M9 9mm in the Marines, bought my first pistol (A Glock 22 .40S&W), and I managed not to shoot myself or others with it. I still do not like the DA/SA type pistols for the heavy DA trigger pull. Currently I have a Springfield Armory XDm compact in 9mm that I love- better ergos for me than a Glock and I appreciate the additional grip safety even though I don't find anything wrong with how Glock does it.

    Trying a bunch of pistols out would be the best way- but if renting some to try isn't an option, then go to a bunch of gun stores and see what fits your hand best, what seems to point naturally. Read up on the different actions/styles/calibers and decide what's best for you. While I agree that for self defense 9mm is about as small as you should go, I think in the summer time when people aren't likely to be wearing a ton of thick clothing, .380ACP (9mm short) is good to go, and a P238 is super easy to disappear on my body, and I'm not a big dude
  18. duran21

    duran21 Lacey Active Member

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    if your going to the range only with this pistol, then get it in 22 LR... 22 can be used for self defense, however I do not believe it is powerful enough to stop an attack... (it will make most attackers think twice if you pull any gun)

    9mm is a good solid defensive round that is cheap and easy(ish) to fire.
  19. NewInTown

    NewInTown Clackamas Member

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    Just a heads up, you CAN'T rent a pistol at the range in Clackamas if you don't bring one of your own. New regulation following shooting/suicides at ranges. Just didn't want anyone to make this plan to try and figure out which pistol they liked best. Good luck in your search.
  20. Zepoll

    Zepoll Keizer Active Member

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    You CAN rent at The Baron's Den in Springfield.

    Or just go and find one that fits your hand and buy it. If you don't like it you can always trade it or sell it for something else.
    Redcap and (deleted member) like this.