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New to forum & New shooter!! I need advice on my next gun......

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by CCSweetheart, Jul 22, 2010.

  1. CCSweetheart

    CCSweetheart Portland, OR New Member

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    Hey there, I'm super excited to be a part of this forum and the NW Firearm/Shooting community! I'm brand new to guns, period, but have just now found them to be a total passion of mine! I'm in my mid-20's - all my life have been intimidated by guns, but after a recent attack (by another female, and yes I'm ok, but a guy involved that night barely escaped with his life- woke me the f*#@ up!), I purchased a gun for self-defense and realized that I'm in love with everything about them, from aesthetics, to shooting for hobby and sport, to everything about concealing and home defense etc.

    I'll first mention that I'm a fairly good shot in general. I have good spatial sense and hand-eye coordination as well as a steady wrist and confidence once I shoot a weapon a few times. I shot my friend's husband's .40 for the first time today and got 8 of 15 within the black at 7 yards. I know that is far from being a sharp shooter, but I feel pretty good about it seeing as how I am such a novice and it was my first time shooting this particular gun. :p

    I would LOVE you experts' input on what my next piece should be, please let me tell you what I like and don't like about my currents as far as I can tell:

    Charter Arms .38 Special, used for Nightstand/HD-
    +
    Fantastic grip- Soo comfortable, I feel complete control over it in my hand, would be very difficult to grapple away in an up-close confrontation
    +
    Being a revolver I like the fact that it won't jam in the case of an up-close confrontation
    +
    Choice of double or single action
    +
    Reliable as a mother f'er
    +
    Cute (she's pink and stainless)

    --Negatives..
    -
    Only 5 rounds and speedloading for a revolver just seems so unrealistic to me
    -
    I feel like my accuracy is way off... I'm shooting up and to the left with this gal, but in any situation it's here for, I prob won't be as far away as 7 yds

    RUGER LCP- My Wingwoman! (( I am in LOVE with this gun for carry/defense ))
    +
    Profile and size of the piece, paired with aesthetic appeal and conceal-ability for this chamber seems to be unparallelled. I was first looking at the Kel-Tec which looks like a ToysRUs piece of junk comparatively (IMO) and the Bersa Thunder which is not nearly as sleek and conceal-able. I carry large purses and while this is not my first choice of carry method it is very easy to integrate if I feel like my purse is an ok spot at the moment. I found out online that the semi-permanent pocket clip manufactured for the Kel-Tecs fits my LCP- I even enlightened them to that at my fav gun shop, where I purchased it and they kindly installed it for me :) (Shout out to ROY at Clackamas GUN BROKER-- THEY ARE AMAZING at this place! Please give them your money!) The clip is FANTASTIC for clipping in my jeans, purse pocket, or even bra. Much better than a full holster for women especially.
    +
    Very accurate. From what I hear the LCP has a surprising degree of accuracy considering its small size and what it is chambered for- I've only shot one other .380, a Beretta, before this and that's what made me go for the .380- I felt like it was a very managable round for me. One thing is that the sights on this are almost non-existent- I did purchase the laser for this item as it is my primary carry, and that increased my accuracy *only slightly* while shooting in normal position as explained....
    -
    The damn thing is so small, it is even hard for me and my girl friend as well with our small woman hands to grip it securely enough with both hands for an accurate shot at 7 yds. As a matter of fact, at the range today, I discovered I am WAY WAY WAY more accurate shooting this with ONE HAND. Is this normal? It's nearly impossible to cradle my right hand with my left as I normally would shooting a semi-auto.
    -
    The trigger pull is VERY long. My friend almost gave up on a shot today because she was feeling she did not have control over the trigger. With this gun it seems mid-pull you feel you have to move from your second phelange to your first, which really f's off your shot. Keeping your 1st on the trigger seems to help accuracy but can hurt your finger (and always breaks my fake nail). I feel this contributes to more recoil, or anticipated recoil, or flinching, or something. I will say that I was UNBELIEVABLE while shooting with one hand and the laser!! So empowering :)

    I feel like the LCP covers my carry needs, and the .38 maybe covers HD needs for the most part (until I get my double barrel LOL), but I REALLY REALLY REALLY wanna get a .40 or .45 now, both to shoot and to use as my primary HD with the .38 tucked away. I've poked around a bit, and I really like Springfield, Taurus, Walther, and Beretta Models. I do NOT like Glocks. I shot that Springfield XD-40 today, and I LOVED it. I felt really confident in shooting it and like I said I got all of my shots in very well, with a full clip I'm sure I would live to see my grandchildren LOL! I don't really want to spend $5-600 on a new one but I'm not a cheapskate either, I want what will be best for me.

    I would love opinions on what would be an ideal chamber and model for me, a .40 or a .45, and what models are reliable/comfortable? I've shot a couple of .45's and felt maybe they're a bit much for me, but not side-by-side with a .40, is there a huge difference in the same model of gun as far as recoil etc, and is it really a superior stopping round? Is the XD a good choice?

    I can't wait to hear your thoughts!
     
  2. absoluterik07

    absoluterik07 Salem, OR Member

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    Welcome to the forum and let me say, if you are in the market for a .45 I would highly recommend getting a 1911. The recoil on my 1911 is comparable to my friends glock 22 which is chambered in .40. They are a blast to shoot and fairly concealable due to their thin profile. Hope you get what suits you best!
     
  3. BuckWallace

    BuckWallace Gresham New Member

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    I have a Springfield XDsc (sub compact) in .40 and LOVE IT! With the shorter barrel, the .40 sc has more of a "snappy" recoil, while a full-size .45 is more of a push. I was really nervous from hearing all the stories of the snappy recoil before I got a chance to shoot my XD, but when I finally got the chance I had no problem with it. Plus, the XD was amazingly accurate right out of the box. Anyway, that's my view on the XD. Good luck!
     
  4. LibertyorDeath

    LibertyorDeath Western Washington Member

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    Glock 26, 27, 30, or 36.
    Smith and Wesson M&P9c, 40c, or 45c.
    Heckler and Koch (HK) P2000, USPc, or HK45c (Expensive guns though)
    Sig Sauer P220 Compact.


    FYI, The 9MM has more power than .38 Special
     
  5. Phillyfan

    Phillyfan Oregon City, Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Welcome to the forum. In my opinion the Springfield XDm is one of the best bang (excuse the pun) for the buck guns out there. They have adjustable grip sizes, are extremely accurate, and have a great reputation for reliability, plus they come with a nice accessary package. I would mention that if you plan to shoot a lot the 9mm caliber is much cheaper and a proven defense round (think the full size XDm 9 holds 19 rounds). You can pick up a new one for between 5-600 dollars.

    Also was going to mention that I have read that out of a short barrel (2 inches or less) that the .380 is more powerful than the .38. Some of the guys who now more about this than me on this sight may be able to varify or dispell that.
     
  6. Cougfan2

    Cougfan2 Hillsboro, OR Well-Known Member

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    First, welcome to NWFA and congratulations on making the decision not to be a victim and preparing to be able to defend yourself.

    I would highly recommend another site to you, particluarly since you are a woman that has made the decision to carry a handgun for protection. The Cornered Cat is a great site that discusses women and armed self defense (a good resource for men too I might add). Enjoy.

    Cornered Cat
     
  7. Phillyfan

    Phillyfan Oregon City, Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Never knew this site existed. Good advice, Coug.
     
  8. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    I AM IN LOVE. This is my kind of woman
    I love my XD-40
    I really love my H&K 40
    I really really love my Kimber 45
    I totally gush over my S&W 357 Mag. model 686
    each if these are awesome guns.

    Best advise go to a range that rents guns and fire them or make nice to some folks here and sit up a shooting date.

    Experince well give you the best method of choosing your weapon(s).
     
  9. motoman98

    motoman98 Gresham, OR Active Member

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    Hello and welcome to the forum, lots of info here and "advice", too....
    Be sure to look at and handle the Sig Sauer line. Reliable, accurate, quality, I have several and now for a carry piece, I am now using the dao P250. You can find them in three sizes: subcompact to full size and three grip sizes. Perfect to find the 'fit' you are looking for.
    I have an XD and like it, but I kept looking. just me. Good luck!
     
  10. CCSweetheart

    CCSweetheart Portland, OR New Member

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    Thanks for the kind reception and advice people! I feel like I've already been talking to my friends who shoots' ears off, it's great to be able to get so much information and opinions.

    So I suppose I should really be looking for the XDm 9 it sounds like. I love shooting that .40, but I have a feeling this is going to turn into a very expensive habit. I just quickly compared some .40 and 9mm ammo prices online... The way I'll be blowing thru rounds at the range, I guess I'll probably get to a .45 or something a little later :) Are these 9mm rounds going to be similar in effect to the .380s out of my LCP? If not, what will be the difference? One thing I'm not really getting the hang of is understanding everything about bullets- it seems there are SO many variables? Jacketed/not, hollow point, aluminum, brass, and then what kind of gun it is coming out of contributes to the effect as well?! Seems overwhelming but I really want to figure it out.

    I am planning on going to a range that rents guns and trying out a few soon, my range is pretty bare-bones and doesn't offer this (although it is practically my next-door neighbor and I can go whenever I want which is nice).

    Thank you for the link to the Cornered Cat--- actually, it's very funny, I happened across this site a few weeks ago while Googling around on carrying, etc, and I posted the whole schpeil that they have on the front page to my Facebook, it perfectly articulated my whole ideology on fighting and self-defense (I don't go looking for it but these claws will rock you if that's what you want LOL), that and I am a crazy cat lady :)

    Does anyone know of any local female gun interest groups, especially catered toward younger generation, or do I need to start one?
     
  11. Cougfan2

    Cougfan2 Hillsboro, OR Well-Known Member

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    I think once you start researching it a little bit more you will find out that the 9mm, particularly the +P and +P+ loads offer significantly better downrange terminal performance than the .380. Not hatin' on the .380 here, but the numbers tell the story.

    As far as 9mm pistols I have a Sig 229 that I love.
     
  12. Phillyfan

    Phillyfan Oregon City, Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    In case you didn't know, the "downrange terminal performance" that Coug mentions is "the behavior of a projectile when it hits its target. It is often referred to as stopping power when dealing with human or other living targets." (from Wiki)

    The 9mm has much better stopping power than the .380, and the ammo, in most cases, is also cheaper than .380 and .38
     
  13. Cougfan2

    Cougfan2 Hillsboro, OR Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, Phillyfan. I should have stated it more simply. Stopping power is an easier concept to understand particularly for someone new to guns.
     
  14. deen_ad

    deen_ad Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    I got my wife to the range once, to an NRA Woman's shoot. Took my stepdaughter (now deceased) too. Can't get the wife back to the range. Even bought a LadySmith for her, finally traded it off.

    I had an ex-gf that I bought a .38 for, she was a GOOD shot. The rangemaster wanted her to go pro in fact.

    I've asked my wife to go out shooting but she says without her daughter there it just wouldn't be the same. It's been about two years since her daughter died and I keep hopeing that she'll get over it.

    At least she's not totally against guns like she once was. If we get into a bad area she used to ask if I was armed.Now she KNOWS I am and she doesn't bother asking anymore.

    Need to find a few women that she likes and get all of them to the range, maybe my wife would take to it.

    Deen
    NRA Benefactor/Recruiter
    WAC Member
    ACSWW Member
     
  15. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    Cabela's in Lacey has a woman NRA class in a couplle of weeks.

    cougfan makes good points,

    :bluelaugh::bluelaugh::laugh::banana:
     
  16. deen_ad

    deen_ad Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    on the loads! Put Hornady Critical Defense rounds in the .38 and practice rounds in the 9mm and see how the stopping power compares. The same goes for most comparisons!

    Personally I use the Hornady Critical Defense in .45 for my carry.

    Deen
    NRA Benefactor/Recruiter
    WAC Member
    ACSWW Member
     
  17. timbernet

    timbernet Boring, Oregon Member

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    Depending on where in Portland you are located, this is a good deal: Public Safety Training Center
    Every Friday night is "Ladies' night" -- meet other women shooters, etc - rent guns ($8/gun + ammo) BUT: you need a gun of your own to rent one, they got tired of cleaning up and filling out paperwork for people that would come in off the street, rent a gun, and commit suicide. They figure if you bring your own gun in you wouldn't bother renting one to commit suicide...

    Also, the Gun Broker shop in Clackamas has a few women shooters on staff (2-3 of them are less than 30 years old) -- they aren't just pretty faces, they all shoot and know the different guns quite well and would be able to lend advice based on what they like to shoot, etc.
     
  18. turq

    turq Molino,oregon Member

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    I will mention a great gun for you to try.
    CZ PCR 9MM alloy Lg. Mag cap. Reliable. See CZ Custom for models ect.
    This PCR model has a de-cocker lever SA and DA Many grips and other mods to personalize it to your liking.Try Keith's to see CZ pistols.
    All metal guns; the 'old school option'
     
  19. CCSweetheart

    CCSweetheart Portland, OR New Member

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    Is that really why they have that policy? That's horrifying. It seems like an obvious general liability but that's pretty morbid. It does make sense though.

    I love the Clackamas Gun Broker (haven't been to the others yet), ALL of the employees, and especially the younger ladies there that I've talked with have been very very cool... It's been nice to be able to ask them a few female-specific questions and get their feedback. I can't say enough good things about that shop in general, they have amazing service and Roy the owner sure knows how to run a business and take care of his customers. I'll be a lifelong customer and send everyone I can there, from the way I've been dealt with there. Just awesome.

    I will definitely have to check out the Ladies Nite over there very soon, it sounds like a ton of fun! Is it usually busy, has anyone checked it out? Are there even any other females on this board LOL

    That CZ PCR is a nice lookin' gun!!
     
  20. pyromancer

    pyromancer Portland Freelance Graphic Designer Bronze Supporter

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    If your looking at 9mm now which it sounds like you are. (good choice if you like to shoot in my opinion, fairly cheep ammo, and a 9mm home defense round will get the job done). I second looking into the CZ's. I have an EAA witness-p that I picked up recently at gun broker tigard, its a CZ clone with a polymer frame made by Tangfolio. I absolutely love it, and have been told the CZ's are even better. An important aspect of buying it for me was how it felt in the hand, I took my girlfriend with me as she likes to go shooting with me and we both felt it felt the best in our hands compared to other 9mm's

    Also check out the classifieds on here sometimes you can find good deals.