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  1. #1
    tmodesto is offline Junior Member
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    Need recommendation for best Pistol

    I need recommendation on best pistol and caliber mainly for indoor range shooting , I have mid size hand and don;t have a good grip of bulky pistols here are my priorities:

    - First and most important I want be accurate (or deadly accurate!)
    - 2nd low recoil
    - third low maintenance and reliable - just want to run a snake once every couple of hundred (and may be field strip clean every thousand or so) fine tuning and bench work is not my work-I want to be driver not a mechanic!!
    - realtively light but not ultra compact (4" barrel I guess)(not more than 28-30 oz)
    - under $1000

    my question what pistol and what caliber (for caliber most important is accuracy than stopping power.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Snowman's Avatar
    Snowman is offline Member
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    Understand that your question is the most commonly asked question on this board, and it's also the hardest to answer. Here is my recommendation:

    If it's only for the range get a .22; if you're opposed to that 9mm is a good choice - low recoil & cheap ammo. Now, go out into the world, Interweb, etc. and look for specific guns that fit your criteria. This board is an excellent place to start, and you can also Google different manufacturers. Stick to quality manufacturers like those named in the Forum section. When you've narrowed it down to a few that fit what you want, ask about them specifically and you'll get customized opinions.

  3. #3
    Joeshwa24's Avatar
    Joeshwa24 is offline Member
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    I have to say your third criteria is a bit of a concern, Firearms and people who don’t want to properly care for them rarely have good relationships. Honestly most guns out there are not that hard to strip and clean. That being said here is a link to how I would guide you to making this decision.

    The "my first gun" question answered.

  4. #4
    hideit's Avatar
    hideit is offline Senior Member
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    get a 22LR or a 9mm
    however the 9mm will require more cleaning
    the 22 is a lot cleaner and can go for a whiile - some people have said for a long while
    since it is only for the range then if it fails - so what - stop and clean it then resume -
    for 22 revolver get a S&W K22 -
    for 22 revolver - whew - long list here but i'll bet most readers would recommend the ruger 6" target maybe with a bull barrell - go to their web site to see their products - more expensive but most recommended is also the S&W model 41
    I'm not even touching the "accurate" topic for the 9mm's....

  5. #5
    neophyte is offline Member
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    unusual

    tmodesto: Sir; quite unusual question. Giving the parameters, only one would come to mind. GP100 revolver from Ruger. You would be able to shoot .38's or .357's. With minimal excuses for not cleaning [which I don't advocate]
    Having average size hands myself, the GP fits and is quite capable of helping absorb felt recoil. With minimal work the trigger can be brought up to any standard. Snakes beware; accuracy from the GP out of the box.
    Available 3'-4'-6' in stainless.
    I would be hard pressed to consider any and I mean any 'Semi' that is not going to be cleaned. You could find yourself in a situation that a 'Semi' might not work; With revolvers; just keep pulling the trigger.
    Maintenance is a way of life; not changing the oil in your car; not washing our bodies; maintenance needs to happen at all levels.
    Follow up with your thoughts.

  6. #6
    Liko81 is offline Member
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    Sounds like you want a target pistol. First of all, a pistol is only as accurate as its shooter; the most finely-tuned, zeroed gun in the world will act just like every other gun if you jerk the trigger, flinch, or anticipate recoil. Understanding that, a fixed-barrel design (blowback) is going to be more accurate on the whole than a tilting barrel (Browning & variants including many striker-fired designs), especially as it ages. The barrel, camblock, receiver and frame will eventually break in, which gives smoother action and avoids further wear as the parts fit better, but the moving parts quite simply aren't as "tight" as the gun off the shelf would be. A blowback design keeps the barrel, receiver, and frame locked together through the entire cycle, and therefore assuming you point the barrel in the right place and hold it there as you squeeze the trigger, that picture will not change until the bullet leaves. A Browning-action by design does start to move before the bullet's out of the barrel, and this makes it inherently less accurate (though good enough for most).

    If you're all about poking holes very close together at 100yds with a pistol, your pistol is a .22LR Ruger or Browning blowback target model, probably with a 10-power scope, aftermarket custom-fit grips and 5" or longer bull barrel (increased front weight decreases kick-up part of recoil). You can start with just the pistol (most 22 pistols have a decent high-mass barrel already), get basic proficiency with it, add a grip to solidify contact between gun and hand, then a scope to sight more accurately downrange. You can customize from there for better accuracy, recoil behavior or whatever else you want.

    If you're into IPSC and IDPA, you have to have a defensive-caliber weapon (usually 45ACP for more bullet mass but 9mm is also common), and the choice becomes harder. The targets in IPSC range from 3 to 20 yards in most cases (certainly no sniper shots), and a wimpy .22 ain't gonna get those metal plate targets to drop. However, MOST hits even off-center with a defense-caliber projectile will, meaning you don't need tack-driver accuracy as long as you have good recoil control and realignment for rapid fire (much like in the real world; a BG coming at you is a big target and what counts is putting lead into the center of mass quickly). In that case almost any full-frame pistol in a caliber that is controllable has the main components necessary.

    Either way, try anything and everything you can in the calibers available to you before you buy. If you know other shooters, have them take you out to the range (offering to buy the ammo tends to convince more hesitant shooter friends) and shoot their guns. Figure out what you like and what you don't. Then start looking for a stock gun that has most of what you want (few have Hogue grips, for instance, and the grips are between $10 and $40, so you can do like everyone else and buy them aftermarket; they won't break the bank). Test fire each candidate, and make your decision. None of us can tell you which gun is right for "you"; if that were possible there'd only be one gun ever made and it would be perfect for everybody.

  7. #7
    Mike Barham's Avatar
    Mike Barham is offline Senior Member
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    Cleaning every 1000 rounds is more than I do with my Glocks back home, and they always work fine. I clean 'em every six months or so. So if you are lazy like me, and have zero interest in cleaning guns, you might look at Glocks.

    But, yeah, you need to shoot some different guns. I like Glocks, but other guys like 1911s, XDs, M&Ps, Berettas, SIGs and lots of others. A Glock 17 or 17C would seem to meet all your criteria.
    Employed by Galco Gunleather - www.galcogunleather.com / Veteran OEF VIII

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  8. #8
    tmodesto is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks every one for recommendations - although I want buy something mainly for range but I one something that I can put it in my night stand too so .22 is out. I rented and shot more than half dozen different guns at range (more than 1000 rounds total)but honeslty I think shooting 50 rounds of reload ammo specially with rent guns does not justify a gun qualification i.e. based on my range expereince CZ is POS! while its listed as a good gun (and might be true). (BTW the most accurate I had was with 1911, different models and I had awsome results, but gun weight, recoil plus a good one cost north of $1000 for now I made it off of my list .)

    So I am leaning toward 40 or 9mm for caliber (I still can;t tell which one is more accurate), and I guess plastics have better recoil and are low maintenance than metal frames. The only metal I liked the grip and weight together is S&W 910S or 410S but couldn;t find lots of feed back about this gun. I guess my list would be:

    - Smith Wesson 910S or 410S (only metal candidate)
    - Glock 19 or 23
    - XD service 9 or 40
    - M&P 9 or 40
    - SIG 229 ( 226 is bulky for me)

    my question from expert based on my criteria which gun and what caliber? Thanks again

  9. #9
    TOF's Avatar
    TOF
    TOF is offline Senior Member
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    The M&P9 has 3 different grip sizes in the box a 4.25" barrel, is accurate and 9MM is the most economical SD/HD pistol round available. I thought it would be a good choice and a few thousand rounds later still do. The M&P40 ammo is more costly but I also thought it would be a good choice and a few thousand rounds later it also remains a good decision for me.

    Good luck with whatever you get.


  10. #10
    Snowman's Avatar
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    Just based on your criteria, it sounds like you want a 9mm. The gun you choose is far more important to accuracy than the round it's chambered for, so don't make a caliber decision based on that. 9mm is cheap, and has mild recoil out of most guns.

    I have no experience with any of the guns you listed. I have shot both Glocks and XDs, however, and they're both excellent.

  11. #11
    Liko81 is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmodesto View Post
    I guess my list would be:

    - Smith Wesson 910S or 410S (only metal candidate)
    - Glock 19 or 23
    - XD service 9 or 40
    - M&P 9 or 40
    - SIG 229 ( 226 is bulky for me)

    my question from expert based on my criteria which gun and what caliber? Thanks again
    Any of the above would be a very serviceable, accurate weapon for a variety of applications from range to competition to nightstand. As Mike said, Glocks are very popular and if you like the feel you really can't go wrong. They are however not for everyone; I found fault with the feel of the grip (very square), the sight picture (I prefer 3-dot; the stock sight is dot and bracket which is highly visible but hard to align IMO) and the slide lock (very difficult to manipulate one-handed) so I went with my Ruger as a first handgun. You might take a look at the P-series; I say that to everyone but the 89, 90 and 95 really are quite good and a great value; the gun is definitely more accurate than I am (4-6" diameter groups at 15 yds; only 3 range trips, less than 600 rounds spent and I still get rogues so accuracy is definitely a personal problem ).

    Size is an issue; you've listed some full-frame, some mid-frame and one or two compact/subcompact models. From an accuracy standpoint, a full-frame weapon in general will be best; higher mass means less recoil, the fuller grip is more stable and the longer sighting distance along the barrel means you can aim more precisely. As you get smaller, you lose these advantages for added concealbility (though a smaller grip can also be advantageous to smaller hands). Polymer-frame weapons are less durable than metal (though this is negligible; an abused gun will show it whether metal or polymer) but the frame is lighter and they do have reduced recoil. The center of gravity is more out-of-line with the hand, but that means the moment of inertia (the gun's resistance to rotation due to mass distribution) is higher so it will rotate less.

    As far as caliber, any of the 3 main "defense" calibers (9mm, .40S&W, .45ACP) would be just fine in any situation. For range/target, which will be the overwhelming majority of rounds sent through your gun, cost will probably be an issue and 9mm FMJ wins all day in that regard; for any given brand any other caliber will likely be at least 1.5x the cost. 9mm defense rounds (Hydra-Shock JHPs and similar) have advanced far beyond the rounds available when many professional opinions were publicized, and they will do the job. You can argue .40S&W and .45ACP, and they do have advantages, but 9mm is inexpensive and effective, and that's a good combination for a "do-all" handgun.

    Now, a shotgun beats any handgun, and a 12-gauge 3" cartridge of 00 buck is probably the only thing short of an automatic weapon that will put a BG down regardless of the chemicals in his system. Therefore, if your handgun will be as much a home defense tool as a range toy, consider supplementing it with a Mossberg or Remington 18" 12-gauge.

  12. #12
    Joeshwa24's Avatar
    Joeshwa24 is offline Member
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    It sound's like you have done your homework, props for that. You can’t go wrong with any of the guns you listed. So I would say at this point the rest of us really cant help you anymore, it comes down to personal preference and we can't tell you what you like (not that I think you are asking us to) Go buy the one that you like the best in the Caliber that is the most comfy for you. Oh and if you have never done it before take a certified NRA handgun course that is the absolute best thing you can do when you are starting out.

  13. #13
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    Shipwreck is offline HGF Forum Moderator
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    1 of the lowest recoiling 9mms I have ever shot has gotta be the Beretta 92FS

  14. #14
    neophyte is offline Member
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    Liko81: Sir; I don't know how the 'quote' thing works: I'll only refer to paragraph in your last posting. 2nd paragraph.
    Accuracy, handling, shoot ability, recoil, sight alignment, sight radius,
    only in part; is the thought accurate.
    Your choices are good, your thinking is good, exploring is good, comparing is great.
    Each of us have parameters: understanding recoil, plus the other stuff that takes place during 'live fire; give consideration Glock has a lower i.e. higher sight radius vs the XD. Glocks ?felt recoil? is considered less? I don't know how this is figured. Glock sight radius is different from the XD.
    Now to the crux.
    Having G models my shooting partner has the XD's I have had the opportunity to blast away with both. I've lobbed 100's down range. I pick one up while he is shooting and back and forth. Can I tell the difference in reality? NO. Do I routinely hit my marks? [target] We shoot at golf balls. Golf balls are not safe out to and beyond responsible range. A normal outing I cannot tell the difference, between the two.
    For info. 9mm-.40-.45 units.
    You have figured out cost accountability; will the 9mm serve you well? My not so humble opinion; accuracy outweighs any caliber. Thereby; cost accountability. Shoot the mess out of the 9mm can be expensive.
    shoot the mess out of anything else and double your pleasure. Shooting the 9mm on a regular basis, get where you can enjoy knowing that the target can be safe
    Would 'I' have an XD? No. I shoot Glock. Do 'I' think one is better than the other? NO. Why Glocks then? "Gaston"

  15. #15
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    scorpiusdeus is offline Supporting Member
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    Here's my opinion based on what you've posted so far.

    1) Sig P229. One of the finest handguns ever made.

    2) M&P. I have held it owned it for a hot second, and shot it. As a confirmed Sig Fan Boy, I was blown away by this firearm.

    IF you REALLY only want to shoot it at the range, go 9MM.

    IF you think you might use it for Home defense, go .40 S&W

    Here's what I like to call the (mini) evolution of a gun owner. You start off unsure, you find a weapon that fits you and that you love, now you become a gun junkie. You start buying more guns. You'll subscribeto every gun rag and internet forum about guns. You must have the best, no wait, the smallest, no wait, the highest capacity, oh wait, the largest caliber. You're only going to use it at the range... well, maybe at home, some... oh jell, you're getting your CCW permit.

    Before you know it, you own 7 Handguns, 2 rifles (they'll be an AR and an M1A) and a Shotgun, most likely a Remington 870 or a Mossberg 550.

    You'll own all of these because you'll come here and ask us and that's what we will recommend.

    I've skipped a lot, but that's the readers digest version.

    My advice, just go with it, don't fight it.
    Last edited by scorpiusdeus; 12-07-2007 at 02:38 PM.

  16. #16
    Spartan's Avatar
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    92fs

  17. #17
    Mike Barham's Avatar
    Mike Barham is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by scorpiusdeus View Post
    Before you know it, you own 7 Handguns, 2 rifles (they'll be an AR and an M1A) and a Shotgun, most likely a Remington 870 or a Mossberg 550.
    Heh heh, there's truth in that. But then you may eventually reach the point I did, and start selling most of those guns because you don't have a real use for them. Now I could live quite happily with maybe four or five guns total, since they are the guns I actually shoot and use, so I am in the process of emptying my safe rather than filling it.

    But yeah...it seems like everyone goes through that acquisition phase while they decide what they like and need for their own use.
    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.

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