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Renting S&W M&P 9mm Compact

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by ApronAmy, Sep 12, 2010.

  1. ApronAmy

    ApronAmy Beaverton, OR Member

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    My apologies if this is not the right place to post this question...

    I'm looking at purchasing my very first handgun sometime in the next year. I've picked out the Smith and Wesson M&P 9mm compact from my trips to the gun store because it fits my hands beautifully, is of a weight I can manage, and meets all of my requirements. My dilemma is that I'd really like to try one before I buy it but neither of the ranges near Portland (The Place to Shoot and the Clackamas Public Safety range) has this gun to rent and I don't know anyone who owns one.

    I called The Place to Shoot and the person who answered wasn't sure if the one they had was the compact or full sized. From the way it was described I was pretty sure it was the compact. Turns out it wasn't but I didn't find that out until I was there and in the lane getting ready to shoot. Since this was my first time shooting anything other than a .22 I went ahead and practiced a little just to get over my anxiety and nerves, but the full-sized 9mm definitely does not feel anywhere near as comfortable in my hands as the compact.

    Is there anywhere else near Portland that I can rent the compact 9mm to try it out? Am I just going to have to buy one and hope for the best? Should I just go with the way it feels in my hands and learn to shoot it to the best of my ability?

    Also, being a pretty petite woman with limited shoulder strength/endurance I'm most worried about the recoil...does anyone know how similar the recoil is on the full-sized compared to the compact?

    Thanks for your help!

    Amy
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2010
  2. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

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    Go here to rent and shoot guns in the future, Public Safety Training Center

    The Place to Shoot was once a great place, it is now a clip joint, if you got out of there for less than $75 with fee's, rental, ammo and other misc charges I would be surprised.

    I would also ask what you plan to do with the gun, home protection or CCW? The full sized MP would not be a good choice for CCW. I even find the compact too big but it personal choice. Take a serious look at some of the offerings from Kahr if this is a carry weapon
     
  3. ApronAmy

    ApronAmy Beaverton, OR Member

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    It cost $78 for two of us renting one gun. Last time we ever go there. The incredible noise, smell, and lack of working equipment were enough to put me off as a first-time shooter.

    I called the Public Safety Training Center and the guy said they don't have the 9mm compact... actually he said they don't have "any of those little guns" :laugh:

    Hence my dilemma...
     
  4. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

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    Is this a carry gun? I'm a big guy and I find that even though I have larger guns that I will carry a smaller model like a LCP or a Kahr 100% of the time as opposed to leaving even the sub compacts at home, heck I have a LCP in my pocket right now. :p
     
  5. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

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  6. ApronAmy

    ApronAmy Beaverton, OR Member

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    The 9mm compact would only be for home defense. I want something I can practice and get really good with before I consider carrying. One step at a time, at least for right now. My job does not allow me to carry a weapon - for extremely good reasons with which I have absolutely no argument - so I'm much more focused on something I can have at home to protect myself and my kids.
     
  7. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

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    If you like the MP I would suggest you also test fire the Springfield XD too. I would recommend a Sig too but I find they have a really long reach to the trigger which is not well suited to females petite hands (or guys like me with meaty but short fingers.)

    Congratulations on taking the initiative to be proactive in your own personal security. :thumbup:
     
  8. unionguy

    unionguy Portland Active Member

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    I would highly recommend going with the full-size M&P in that case. You will have less recoil than the compact and that is especially important when learning on your first pistol. The full size might feel less comfortable just holding it, but it will be much easier to manage when firing. You can also try different grip sizes too. Honestly, if that doesn't work, I'd almost recommend you find a larger .380 to shoot. Learning on a compact pistol is less than ideal, in my opinion. Best of luck.
     
  9. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

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    Good point on the full size MP. If it's not a carry gun a full size will be a better choice for the home and the range.
     
  10. ApronAmy

    ApronAmy Beaverton, OR Member

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    I'm pretty stuck on the M&P - especially the compact - because I have very long fingers, small palms, and long fingernails. With the largest backstrap on the M&P 9mm my hands were positioned perfectly and it felt like it was made for me.

    I also have shoulder issues which prevent me from holding a full-sized pistol and aiming with any accuracy for more than about three shots... not so good if I want to practice and get good at it. So basically, I'm looking for something with a beefy grip that doesn't weigh a ton.

    I've handled quite a few Glocks, Sigs, and at least one XD but they were either too heavy, the grips were too small, or I just didn't like the way they felt. I'm being kinda picky about this because I don't intend to own more than one gun for quite a while and I want it to be as perfect as possible.
     
  11. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

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    Then you are doing the right thing in going with what works for you, there is no one perfect gun for everyone so when you find what works for you you're golden!

    I see you mentioned kids. I would suggest depending on their ages either now or later attending the Public Safety Training Center's home safety course ($10) with them, either now or when they are old enough. I am a custodial father and I did this with my boys. Another good course strange as it may seem is the Oregon Hunter Education Program, even if you don't plan to hunt, which I don't, it a great course to take with kids, this course costs $10 for 14 hours of training over several weeks, to say that is a bargain is an understatement, plus you will also receive freebies and gift certificates at the end of the course worth well over the small price of the course. This course is very in-depth in firearm safety and near the end of the course you will have an opportunity to shoot at the Johnson Creek gun Club so it's a good opportunity to check it out.

    Good luck in your endeavor into this hobby.
     
  12. spengo

    spengo GLORIOUS CASCADIA Active Member

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    There is a similar outdoor gun club in Dundee, about the same driving time from Tigard. I am a member there, same thing, no staff, members get a gate key. No hours either so if you want to come in the middle of the night to play with lights or night vision, you are good to go. Rifle range out to 100 yards (or 200 if you are there really early) and 4 seperate pistol bays so you can always get one alllll to yourself and drag out the plastic barrels and IPSC targets for some run and gun fun. :) Membership is cheaper too.

    Chehalem Valley Sportsman Club right in the middle of beautiful wine country

    Personally I prefer outdoor because of the noise. And you can shoot things like soda cans and plastic army men if you want (just pick up the garbage).

    IPSC once a month is always fun too, I highly recommend it. Most of the outdoor ranges in this area do IPSC once a month. Tri-county in sherwood, CVSC in dundee, and Douglass Ridge out in Clackamas county. If you want to get really quick with your handgun, IPSC is a really fun way to get in some cool practice. Just be advised IPSC is more about fancy plinking than teaching tactics. No one nearby seems to have IDPA yet unfortunately... You do not have to be a member of the ranges to go to the competitions, there is just a $15-ish fee for the match.

    The only problem is you will never find standing in one place shooting at a static paper target as much fun anymore. :<
     
  13. ApronAmy

    ApronAmy Beaverton, OR Member

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    Thanks to everyone for the great info about the different guns and places to shoot...

    I'm still stuck on my initial question though - trying to find a place to rent a compact M&P 9mm. Does anyone have first-hand knowledge of a place that actually has one for rent? Am I out of luck in trying before I buy?
     
  14. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

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    As another option it's possible that given compatible schedules someone here might let you shoot theirs.
     
  15. spengo

    spengo GLORIOUS CASCADIA Active Member

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    I go to the public safety range to rent, but if you don't like that place, then... uh... well, the way I try out MOST new guns is by going to big shoots with a bunch of people on the internet. :D I dunno when the next nwfa one is, usually I go with a different group. I might go to the next one to try out physicsguy's SCAR though...
     
  16. ApronAmy

    ApronAmy Beaverton, OR Member

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    I don't have anything against the Public Safety Range, they just don't have the gun I'm wanting to rent.

    I'll look around for more information on group outings and such. Thanks!
     
  17. Wenis

    Wenis Tri-Cities, WA Member

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    This doesn't help your M&P search, but consider the 3.8 XDM-9, also with the changeable backstraps but a shorter barrel length and with 19+1 rounds, you will be less likely to need a second magazine for home defense.

    I'm not familiar with the Portland area ranges to aid in your search, but I'm glad you're taking a proactive approach for your own protection and interest.
     
  18. absoluterik07

    absoluterik07 Salem, OR Member

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    The only place that I know for a fact that has the m&p compact for rent is the barons den in Eugene. My brother rented it last time we shot their Tommy gun that they also have for rent. It's a long drive but if you can't find anywhere closer they have one for sure.
     
  19. KenPDX

    KenPDX Portland Member

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    I own an M&P 9 compact, and I shoot at the Johnson Creek Gun Club. Send me a PM if you're interested in shooting it some evening.
     
  20. PBinWA

    PBinWA Clark County Well-Known Member

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    You may want to check out the "Ladies Night" or even the Ladies Pistol Course at Douglas Ridge.

    Douglas Ridge Rifle Club - Ladies Night

    DRRC Ladies Beginner Pistol Class