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Gun for my parents?

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by Skier, Apr 23, 2013.

  1. Skier

    Skier Beaverton/Washington County Active Member

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    I'd be curious what people might suggest for my parents, given the following info...

    -They'd like to get a handgun for personal/home defense.

    -They would also like to possibly carry it concealed.

    -They sometimes have black bears come through their property, so it would be helpful to have something that might either be reasonable defense against a black bear, or at least powerful enough to drive it away.

    -My parents are in their 60-70s, so they'd like something that won't have a ton of recoil and be excessively jarring to their wrists.

    -They'd like to find something used, to keep the cost down, preferring to stay around $200, but maybe up to $400.

    I know many of the desires above are somewhat conflicting, hence why I came here looking for suggestions. :) Thoughts?
     
  2. DieselScout

    DieselScout S Clackamas County Well-Known Member

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    Tough call possibly a Taurus wheel gun in .357 mag. But a better option might be a 20 gauge auto.
     
  3. Sun195

    Sun195 Pugetropolis, WA Well-Known Member

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    Just off the top of my head:

    1) Either a .38/.357 revolver or a 9mm semi-auto for personal defense and maybe concealed carry (I wonder how much they'll actually do this based on your description). Take them to the gun store and see which they can operate and understand how to operate (possibly two different things). Even better, take them to a rental range and see what they can/like to shoot. An investment at the rental range will go a long way toward picking the "right" gun for them. Back in the "good old days", a S&W Model 10 would probably be fine for their needs.
    2) A can of bear spray for black bears. Alternative to this (and the handgun) would maybe be a 20ga shotgun - choose your type based on what they can handle and understand.

    Good luck - let us know what (if anything) they decide to get.
     
  4. civilian75

    civilian75 Hillsboro, OR Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, but I do not see a single solution to your question. Here is my input:

    Home defense: Get a large 9mm Luger like a Beretta 92FS. A used 92FS may be around $400 in today's prices, but I have not checked. There are other large 9mm. You may check this site: The Best Nines - Best 9mm Pistol Site handgun review test gun dealer 40 S&W

    CC: i can't conceive elderly inexperienced in CC carrying large pistols. I'd advise a a modern compact. Here is another link. Best 9mm concealed carry pistols compact handguns CCW and women They have not updated it with the Shield, or maybe the author doesn't think it belongs there, but I do.

    Bears: get bear spray. Any handgun capable of dealing with bears will have murderous recoil. Worst of all, you have to hit the bear while you are crapping on your pants. But if a firearm is desired, why not a repeater rifle? Marlin 1895?

    I know it is not what you are looking for. Just trying to help.
     
  5. mrblond

    mrblond Salem OR Well-Known Member

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    Glock 29? small size for CC, 10MM could deal with pesky bears but the recoil of 10mm in a small frame like that may be a little rough. oh and its a bit over the 2-400$ price range.
     
  6. Netspirit

    Netspirit Bellevue, WA Active Member

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    Take a look at S&W M&P 9mm Compact - 12 rounds is plenty for both home defense and concealed carrying. If home defense / range fun is more important, consider the M&P full size. If concealment is the top priority, M&P Shield will do the trick (however, good luck finding it these days below $400).

    I would recommend a shotgun if bears are a serious concern - much easier to hit fast-moving targets, more stopping power.

    Gas-operated semi-auto shotguns, such as Remington 11-87 or Weatherby SA-08 are quite forgiving recoil-wise. 12 gauge kicks more (which you can alleviate by purchasing reduced-recoil shells), 20ga delivers 75% of 12ga power with 50% of 12ga recoil, it is lighter and easier to handle. Pump shotguns are much cheaper; Remington 870 with Knoxx recoil-reducing stock (+ Limbsaver/Supercell recoil pad) is quite mild-kicking and requires less maintenance/cleaning than a semi-auto. It comes in 12ga and 20ga variants.

    It looks like your parents need a short and a long gun.
     
  7. deen_ad

    deen_ad Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    I'm 66 and carry one of my Kimber .45's everyday and I shoot them just fine too. In fact I shoot .45's better than the "wonder 9's".

    Don't count us "old" folks out just yet.

    Of course a Kimber is out of that price range too.
     
  8. CascadeSam

    CascadeSam Portland Oregon Active Member

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    I can't see making a recommendation near the budget of $200-400. Maybe arm them both with the most powerful bear spray since it can be used on people too.
     
  9. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    My inital thoughts were a 4" 357 magnum for self defense and bears. A 686 would work well in both areas. Carry not so much it is about the same as a 5" 45 in weight. I think a glock or XDM is a good carry option al though my carry option is a compact 45.
     
  10. ronin223

    ronin223 Portland Active Member

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    There is no gun which fits your needs period.

    Anything which will be effective against a bear would have too much recoil AND be too large for conceal carry

    Under $200, impossible


    I have to agree with a previous poster who recommends bear spray, under $200, low recoil works against bears and can be used for personal defense. Somewhat concealable, but may be illegal against humans
     
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  11. CascadeSam

    CascadeSam Portland Oregon Active Member

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    According to the ex-PDX police officer and now a sheriff's deputy who taught my CHL class last year, bear spray can be used on people if that is what you have for self-defense. My question was also asked in the context of being out in the woods camping and can bs be used against humans. BTW, cops can be wrong about the law and I'm not a lawyer and people should not rely upon my comments for legal advice.
     
  12. coop44

    coop44 Tacoma ,WA Well-Known Member

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    as far as getting one handgun good for everything, it isn't going to happen. what you seem to be looking for is the best compromise. A good revolver with a 4 inch barrel preferably a smith and wesson in 38/357 would be my choice. no autos, operating the slide can be difficult with limited strength and joint problems. a revolver can be left loaded until the bullets turn green and still fire, if it does misfire just keep pulling. No safeties no controls, a no brainer.


    contrary to opinion a taurus is a "just as good as..." piece of crap
     
  13. iGun

    iGun Pacific NW Active Member

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    Some good advice already... A few more thoughts:

    Smaller, lighter guns are generally more unpleasant and more difficult to shoot. As well, a small gun in inexperienced hands is more easily pointed in the wrong direction. For all these reasons, an all-steel revolver like a Ruger GP-100 or SP-101 is probably the best option.

    But unless they're willing to invest some time and money in at least basic training, OC spray will probably be a better and more effective option.
     
  14. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    Tell your folks to keep all garbage inside or otherwise unavailable to the bears. Black bears tend not to bother people unless they are crowded

    For defense against other attackers I recommend a compact 9MM such as a Glock 19, Springfield Armory, S & W - M & P, etc. Load it with Speer Gold Dots

    Taurus are junk, forget them
     
  15. trainsktg

    trainsktg Portland OR Well-Known Member

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    I STRONGLY encourage that if your parents are up there in years and are not prone to strenuous physical activity that they eschew any semiauto pistol as a defense weapon.

    My Mom and Dad are in their early 70s, Several years ago Mom called me (they live in PA) and was very proud to report that they had just bought a new .380 pistol for home defense. I congratulated her and left it at that. Fast forward a few months later when I had a chance to visit their home and I discovered that neither one of them had the hand strength to cycle the slide to load a round. By the time I left a week later, they has a nice new Smith .38/.357 revolver and planned on selling the semi.

    Keith
     
  16. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    If they lack the strength to cycle the slide there is an alternative method using the knees.. and if they lack the strength how are they going to pull a 12 lb S & W revolver trigger, quickly, or handle .357 recoil? (assuming they use .357)
     
  17. netcarrier

    netcarrier Portland, Oregon Active Member

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    Hi Skier,
    I would think it was be a good thing to maybe take them to a shooting Range were you can rent a gun that they can try frist. to fine out what they can handle. There are shooting place in Tualain, North portland, Clackamas. As for the cost not so good, most of the good gun are going for over $400.00 now a days. As for which cal. to get .357 up but no 9mm 380 or 32. Shotgun maybe the way to go, but it would be in the Price range too.
    Hope this helps,
    Tony Portland, Oregon Area
     
  18. ocarolan

    ocarolan Portland, Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Recently I gave a pistol to my mother, and while teaching her on it, realized it was a bad idea. She harbored a number of misconceptions (warning shots, leg shots, etc) about when lethal force was justified, and the legal aftermath of a shooting.

    Anyway, I ended up exchanging her pistol with a Kimber Pepperblaster, until she can get professional training. Call me elitist, but I would not recommend my parents carry until they've have had at least DF2+CC-level training, either in-person, or with DVDs and personal practice. This is for their own protection. In today's world, a carrying citizen actually needs more training than a police officer.

    Regarding cost, I found the handgun is actually the most inexpensive item. Training, ammo, legal retainer, and even holster/belt costs end up dwarfing that.
     
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  19. Kevinkris

    Kevinkris Aloha Well-Known Member

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    unfortunately i dont think you will be able to get a handgun that will cover bears and have low recoil. you will need to have 2 different guns for such a situation. as far as a handgun a 9mm or .38 will do well in self defense and is easy to handle. as far as the bears, i wouldnt chance anything less than a 12 ga. on the plus side a 12 ga. is probably the most cheered home defense weapon and would be great for bears, the downside is you cant just carry a 12 ga. without having people harass you.
     
  20. trainsktg

    trainsktg Portland OR Well-Known Member

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    Well they seem to be managing because they shoot with it regularly now at their local range.

    Keith