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Hey folks,

Next month, I'm going to really start putting my pennies back for my first handgun.

I'll be using this generally for home defense and plinking and will be going with 9mm. I'm looking for a full size pistol, preferably with a metal/steel frame. The Sig 226 is particularly appealing to me, as is the USP.

Trouble is, both of these new are way, way out of my price range, and even the used guns are showing up around the 7-800 dollar range. Of course, given enough time, anything's doable, right?

But are there any cheaper, more entry level options for full size pistols that are both metal framed and have a decent reputation?
 
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Also, if you are interested in 1911s at all, Springfield makes some decent ones for a good price. The STI Spartan model is also reasonably cheap and features hand-fitted internals.

Oh yeah, and if you like sigs, I recommend you look around for "certified pre-owned" models. I got my p229r cpo for $600. It looks almost new.
 
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Coming from someone who has had a few handguns, bought and sold.
I bought a brand new Sig P229 for I think $750 or so and I couldn't be happier. I had a Glock and Beretta before that, and I wouldn't go back for anything. The HK is also a great gun. But personally I love my Sig. And I love the 20rd mags.
The Sig has the tac rail and I purchased the Sig STL900L laser/light combo on Ebay for around $100 and it's a bada-$$ light.

I bought the Beretta because it was cheaper and there are plenty of them, easy to take apart, blah, blah, blah, but has nothing on the Sig.
 
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Coming from someone who also likes sigs, I think the CZ-75 will be a good match for you, I recommend going to a gun store and trying one out to see if you like the feel. The new P-01 model is compact and has a light rail. The manual of arms is exactly the same as a sig. Very nice little gun for the price. I like both sigs and CZs better than berettas but that may just be me.
 
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I have a CZ-85 that I could not be happier with. The stock plastic grips on CZs are not the greatest but the CZ-75 family has been around long enough to have plenty of customization options available.
 
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Take a look at FEG's copy of the Browning High Power. The finish is not quite as nice as an FN, but it's still not bad. Plus, they're accurate and reliable. They can still be found under $400, usually $300 to $350 used. The only "drawback" (quotated because it's not a drawback for everyone), is that it's a single action. It would be my first choice for an inexpensive 9.
 

raftman

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Take a look at FEG's copy of the Browning High Power. The finish is not quite as nice as an FN, but it's still not bad. Plus, they're accurate and reliable. They can still be found under $400, usually $300 to $350 used. The only "drawback" (quotated because it's not a drawback for everyone), is that it's a single action. It would be my first choice for an inexpensive 9.

That's a pretty solid recommendation. For those that do believe single action is a drawback, I'd suggest the Bulgarian-made Arcus 98DAC (or the full-sized 98DA). These are also essentially copies of the Hi-Power but with DA/SA triggers. I got mine brand new for $325, which is pretty typical for these guns. It's been completely reliable with all varieties of ammo and an all-around great pistol.

98dac.jpg
 
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If you're ever in the Seattle area, you can shoot every gun in the case at the Bellevue Gun Club. You buy the lead but every gun in the case is at your finger tips for a reasonable fee. We used to go on Tuesdays because it's ladies night during which my wife paid next to nothing to be there. It's a great way to back-to-back compare the Glocks, Sigs, etc.
 
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Take a look at the Ruger P series (P93, P94) it will be used but many to be found in good condition at a good price. A well built pistol, fun to shoot and manufactured by well respected firearm company
 
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Stay away from the Stogers I bought one new about a year ago and the bluing was so thin that after 2 or 3 range trips it had started to rub off almsot completely on the slide just from minor holster wear. Look for a good used Baby Eagle with the metal fram should be around the 350-450 price range. Great pistols. If you want to go entry level 1911 look at Rock Island they are in that range as well and are a pretty decent pistol for the money.
 
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Hey guys, thanks for the feedback so far.

I'm not looking for a 1911, but much respect to that particular gun. Glocks and other polymers I'm not considering, with the exception of the USPs...

I've heard the CZ's thrown around a lot with good things to say. Wasn't aware they were going to be had at such a price. Might definitely be something to seriously consider.

Baby Eagles I'm just completely unfamiliar with, but have heard the name occasionally.

And the Rugers? Absolutely in the dark in regards to their pistols. Is there a particular reason they don't seem to be as popular as their revolvers?
 
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Baby eagle (aka Jericho 941) is an Israeli clone of the CZ-75. Nice gun, I like them. Profile vaguely resembles a deagle so they got the name "baby eagle" here.
 
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Baby eagle (aka Jericho 941) is an Israeli clone of the CZ-75. Nice gun, I like them. Profile vaguely resembles a deagle so they got the name "baby eagle" here.

Aaaahhh. Gotcha.

So from just a cursory web search it seems there's been a couple different companies importing the gun. Are the guns marked differently, or do they all just have the IMI stamping and marks?

Whats the breakdown on the Baby Eagle v. the CZ its based on? Chevy/Ford or is there some substantial pros & cons in play?
 
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It is personal preference, they both cost about the same and function the same. Personally I prefer the styling of CZ pistols, but I may own a jericho in the future sometime, I enjoyed shooting the ones that other people own.

I guess if there is one fault of the Jericho, it is the slide-mounted safety. Some people prefer frame-mounted. I don't think it is a huge deal. IIRC gun broker tigard has both CZs and Jerichos in stock if you wanted to check them out.
 
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As mentioned previously, Sig CPO(certified pre owned) pistols are about the best value going! You can get a CPO for around $600 depending on the model, and they are factory refinished, so they look brand new. With many of them coming from law enforcement trade in programs, they are ofter shot relatively little. ....Besides, its a Sig!
 
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Maybe I missed, but I didn't see anymore mention the Beretta 92s. Great metal frame guns and they can be had used in the $400-500 range. I think they're about $600 new.
 
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you might want to think about the Witness, Itallian copy of the CZ but you can have one frame and several different caliber uppers. Shoot .22. 9mm,40. 45acp,even the 10mm simply by changing slide'barell and magazine, takes only a few seconds. Offered in both steel and polymer versions. I prefer the steel. very comfortable and accurate.
 
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