New to guns and looking for advice

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    1. #1
      Junior Member 1986pacecar's Avatar
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      New to guns and looking for advice

      I never thought I would be interested in guns but the other day I took a beginner's handgun training course through the local NRA and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I took my el cheapo semi automatic Phoenix that I've had for years but didn't use and I didn't really like it but one of the instructers let me use their .22 caliber revolver and I loved it. I like the relative simplicity of the revolver over the semi and shot much more accurately with it. My question is would I be better off getting a similar 22 caliber or will a .38 or .357 satisfy more over the long run? Also please give me some ideas on which revolvers are the best at a fair price and about how much they cost. I plan on going to the sporting goods store Friday and picking one out and I'd like to not look like an idiot so what should I ask and look for at the gun shop? Thanks in advance for any help.
      Last edited by 1986pacecar; 05-15-2007 at 06:41 PM.

    2. #2
      Member Queeqeg's Avatar
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      Exclamation

      I'd ask for a brand new Ruger GP-100 in .357 magnum

      it'll shoot .38 specials for target practice and can chamber the .357 magnum round for use against wild predators

    3. #3
      Senior Member Mike Barham's Avatar
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      It really depends on what you intend to do with the gun. If it is strictly a "fun gun" for range practice and plinking, there's absolutely nothing wrong with a .22. The ammo is super-cheap so you can shoot a lot and become skilled - and a .22 is the best way to do that, since it has zero recoil, allowing to to concentrate on the fundamentals without the distractions of noise and kick.

      If, however, your gun will double for home or street defense (or for "wild predators"), a good double-action revolver in .38 Special or .357 Magnum (which will chamber and fire .38 Specials) is probably the way to go. Using .38 target loads ("wadcutters"), it has minimal recoil and blast, and is a pretty good way to learn to shoot, though a lot more expensive to shoot than a .22. Once you become reasonably skilled, you can then load with .38 hollowponts for defense.

      Stay far away from Magnums until you have some experience under your belt - shooting them will do nothing to help your shooting, and will more likely hinder your progress as a shooter.

      There are many good revolvers out there. Get adjustable sights on whatever you choose. My preference, in order, is Smith & Wesson, Ruger, then Taurus. There are also good used Colts out there.

      A Smith K or L-frame revolver in .38 or .357 is a great place to start, especially if you can find an older one without the silly "safety lock" that now comes standard. My experience is that Smith revolvers have by far the smoothest out-of-the-box trigger actions. Every Ruger I've owned or shot has had a somewhat clunky, "stagey" trigger in double-action, so I quit buying them in the early 1990s.
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    4. #4
      Member Old Padawan's Avatar
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      wait a sec...!!!

      Quote Originally Posted by Mike Barham at Galco View Post
      A Smith K or L-frame revolver in .38 or .357 is a great place to start, especially if you can find an older one without the silly "safety lock" that now comes standard. My experience is that Smith revolvers have by far the smoothest out-of-the-box trigger actions. Every Ruger I've owned or shot has had a somewhat clunky, "stagey" trigger in double-action, so I quit buying them in the early 1990s.

      You owned a revolver? Other than a J frame? You are like an onion, many layers.

      I agree with Mike on this one. A 22 for fun and learning, a .357 for other stuff. I would go with a 4" as it shoots well and you can conceal it.
      "Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it." -Mark Twain

    5. #5
      Senior Member Mike Barham's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Old Padawan View Post
      You owned a revolver? Other than a J frame? You are like an onion, many layers.
      Do you think I'd be so opinionated without actual experience?

      I have owned S&W revolvers in every frame except X. I once gave an A-class IPSC shooter a serious run for his money in a charity falling plate match - me with a borrowed 586 and he a custom hi-cap .38 Stupid. I've had several Rugers in DA and SA, but was never really happy with any of them. They're rugged and durable, but not slick and smooth like a Smith.

      Any other questions, my apprentice?
      Employed by Galco Gunleather - www.galcogunleather.com / Veteran OEF VIII

      Donate to the Christian and Stephanie Nielson Recovery fund: http://www.nierecovery.com/.

      All opinions, particularly those involving politics and Glocks, are mine and not Galco's.

    6. #6
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      Smile 22 revolver

      As mentioned before, a 22 can cheaply be used for training. Once you get the bug and feel competent enough, You should get a 357 perhaps used for about $350 - 400.

    7. #7
      Junior Member 1986pacecar's Avatar
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      Thanks guys. You've given me some good ideas. Now it's time to go shopping

    8. #8
      Junior Member 1986pacecar's Avatar
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      Well, I bought a Ruger Single Six and just shot 50 rounds at the range and this baby is nice. It's easy to use and very accurate for a novice like myself. Pretty soon I'll be asking for advice on a larger caliber pistol

    9. #9
      Supporting Member rfawcs's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by 1986pacecar View Post
      Well, I bought a Ruger Single Six and just shot 50 rounds at the range and this baby is nice. It's easy to use and very accurate for a novice like myself. Pretty soon I'll be asking for advice on a larger caliber pistol
      As others have suggested, a .357 Magnum revolver is one of the most useful revolvers to have. Start keeping yours eyes open for one these; they can be had, used, for reasonable prices: S&W Model 586/686, Colt Trooper MK III, Ruger GP-100. Although a 6-inch barrel revolver has a longer sight radius and thus potentially is more accurate, you'll probably find a 4-inch barrel is more useful overall.

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