I'm fairly new to the whole handgun thing. I've shot them before, I've got rifles and shotguns so guns as a whole are not new to me, just pistols. Anyway, I'm about to buy my first handgun here at the end of December and I've narrowed my search down to two guns that I like, a Kimber .45 1911 or an HK .45 USPct. I'm looking for a gun that functions well in the outdoors(backpacking, hunting, cold weather(as in Alaska's lovely -40 F temps), warm weather), is accurate and a gun with good recoil. I'm hoping, based on my desires above, I can get some good opinions on here.
I've shot the HK I'm looking at before, a friend has it, and I love shooting it and it feels great in my hand. I however don't like the HK's trigger in comparison to the Kimber's, but I'm always hearing 1911's are kind of fussy when they get dirty and for what I like to do in my freetime, I need a gun that's going to shoot and pretty much most, if not all, of the situations I'm going to be in. I know both guns are accurate and the differences, especially for someone new to handguns like me, the differences are minimal. I'm just curious concerning that aspect.
I'd have to say the biggest deciding factor for me though is going to be which one can take the best beating and get dirty and still function well. Thanks for any replies ahead of time.
Think "Revolver". If you're going to be in the Alaska wilderness you'll want a large bore, reliable side arm. Check this out: http://www.cz-usa.com/product_detail.php?id=79
It has user changable barrels and alows the use of different levels of power according to the surroundings.
There's even a special Alaskan variant with a compensated barrel. http://www.cz-usa.com/product_detail.php?id=78
Can you say "BOOOOOM"?
I have to agree and say large bore revolver. At least a .44 Mag. I am partial to Smith and Wessons.
If it was simply for a defense pistol, I have both Kimber Eclipse and a HK USP. I have carried them both, I love them both. I can't say which I love more. For functionality under any conditions, nothing beats HK. And I have shot slow fire groups at the range with the HK as tight as any shot with the Kimber, but not as consistently as the Kimber. The Kimber I can shoot rapid fire groups at 15 yards and punch one hole in the center of the target. I carry the Kimber now, or a newly acquired HK P30, depending on where I'm going.
If the Kimber was reliable, which is sometimes questionable with Kimbers, I'd take that. The Kimber will have a much better trigger that the HK, and a good trigger is the most important component of precise shooting. If you plan on fighting big bears with a puny .45, you'll need all the accuracy you can muster to avoid becoming a bear snack.
1911s are definitely fussier than more modern designs like the HK, but they are also usually far easier to shoot fast and well.
I, too, support the notion of a revolver in at least .41 Magnum caliber for wilderness carry if bear encounters are a realistic possibility. There's really no comparison between a piddly .45ACP and a big-bore magnum when it comes to warding off a big beast that wants to dine on your thigh.
Then again, if I was seriously contemplating a bear attack, I'd probably bring a .45-70 lever gun.
Well the whole bear argument factors little into my decision really. I can deal with bear encounters just fine without bothering with a gun, but of course the gun is a last resort defense against a possible charge. Anyhow, I'm leaning towards the HK now more than ever for the simple fact that I need the reliability in dirty conditions. I'll carry it concealed in town and all, but my chances of using it there are lower than if I were in the middle of nowhere. This is why I was looking at the USPct, but I can find a Kimber with a 4 inch barrel that's concealable as hell too. We'll see here shortly, I think I'll be making the buy tomorrow.