Head spinning, help!
i am in the market for a new 9mm pistol. i did a google search for handgun forums, spent some time on a few, and it seems like this is the place i need to be, seems like a great site with some good members.
on to the questions- i am looking for a quility made, reliable, fun to shoot, accurate, concealable 9mm. i have some experiance with handguns and own a Berreta neos .22 (great little gun). i think i have it narrowed down to four- S&W MP9 (full size or compact, don't no yet), Springfield XD9sc, Glock 19, and the Ruger SR9. the M&P has the best deal right now with the free mags. and rebate but i don't know if i will ever be ok without having a safety on a gun. it along with the glock have internal safeties, (can someone explain how they work) but for my peace of mind i think i need an external safety. you think with time and confidence i would be ok with no manual safety? i have 2 little girls and heaven forbid if i ever accedently left it within reach i want to be sure they couldn't just pull the trigger! i really like the xd9's backstrap safety, i think its a nice feature. the ruger felt good but still new to the market so that worries me a little. i would also like to be able to shoot competition someday, so accuracy is an issue. i am a pretty good shot, but need the gun to cooperate as well. i will not carry the gun everyday but would like to be able to if i feel the need. is there any other guns out there i am over looking? alright sorry for the novel but i need some advice and steering in the right direction. thanks for the help.
P.S. i want to stay in the $500 range or cheaper.
The M&P is a good pistol, but don't be swayed too much by rebates and free goodies. Choosing what you like the most, and what is the most logical for you, is the best course of action in the long run. If that happens to be the M&P, then the free stuff is just gravy.
Originally Posted by 03mossy
Without going into a long technical explanation, none of them will fire unless the trigger is pressed.
it along with the glock have internal safeties, (can someone explain how they work)
That kills the Glock, the M&P, and 99.99% of XDs. But of course an external safety is redudant if you simply commit yourself to the Cardinal Rule: Keep your booger hook off the bang switch until you're ready to fire. Train accordingly.
but for my peace of mind i think i need an external safety.
No, but I think with proper training you will be. Good training inspires confidence.
you think with time and confidence i would be ok with no manual safety?
BZZZZZZZZZZT! Wrong answer! You do not, cannot, must not rely on the pistol to safeguard your children. Only you can do that by acting responsibly with your weapons 100% of the time. Not 99%. Not 99.9%. Not 99.99%. 100% - or nothing.
i have 2 little girls and heaven forbid if i ever accedently left it within reach i want to be sure they couldn't just pull the trigger!
If you cannot commit to being aware of the gun's location and condition at all times, do not own a gun. With small children around, the gun must always be safely stored under lock and key, or in your immediate physical control. It must not ever be anywhere else.
I know extra safeties appeal to newer shooters, but grip safeties do nothing to enhance safety on a modern pistol - unless you do something really dumb like carry it with a loaded chamber stuffed in your pants without a holster. Guns don't just discharge on their own. Negligent discharges happen with the pistol in hand, when the grip safety will be depressed and deactivated anyway. All modern guns are safe when dropped, so the grip safety buys you nothing there.
i really like the xd9's backstrap safety, i think its a nice feature.
As you note, the Ruger remains unproven. The other guns are proven to greater and lesser degrees - the Glock the most, the M&P the least, and the XD in the middle. Of these guns, Glocks are most popular in competition, followed by the XD.
The Glock has the advantages of low bore axis and shorter trigger reset compared to the others, but these are things that go unnoticed by new shooters. The XD or the M&P may fit your hand better. You may prefer their trigger actions, as well.
Best idea is to try to shoot them all. Handling them in a gun shop is okay too, but it gives you very little idea about how they behave when actually fired. Good luck with whatever you choose!
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Given the nature of your questions (peace of mind, safety of children, gun safeties), DO NOT BUY A GUN RIGHT NOW!!!!
First attend a local NRA Handgun Safety course. This will familiarize yourself with ownership issues and handling of pistols.
Second, attend a basic handgun defense course. You will learn skills that will affect your choice and preferences in pistols.
You do not need a gun to attend these courses as your trainer can rent/supply you with one.
Exactly what I was thinking as I read the post. I have 2 small children. My guns are either under my control or they are locked up, unloaded. No other option. Kids will figure out how to disengage a safety, they're smart little buggers. Additionally, a safety is nothing but a mechanical device, it can fail. On top of how it would destroy you mentally if your kids were to shoot themselves or another with your gun, in a lot of states you are also criminally liable. Don't take the chance.
Originally Posted by Mike Barham
Excellent advice! Take a class or two and get comfortable with a gun before you bring it into the house.
Originally Posted by submoa
Originally Posted by submoa
i see your point, but my personal comfort level with a gun is not the issue!!! i own many guns(just only one pistol). my dad has had me out in the woods and taught me the corect way to handle a gun since i was a little as i can remember. i have attended a basic handgun class, the NRA home defense course, and have past all my tests for my permit to carry. so again i am very comfortable with a gun, i just do not have that much time carrying a pistol in a holster. i carry my neos holsterd while deer hunting but thats it and that has a manual safety so i know its not going to go bang on my side. i guess i am more worried about it going off if i bump into a tree while out in the woods or hit a bump to hard on an atv, since i have no experiance with a gun without a traditional safety.
Unless that bump somehow pulls the trigger, I think you're safe. I've hit door jams, the car, and other things with my XD (always loaded) on my hip and haven't shot myself. Hell, I hate to admit it, but I've even dropped it once. It didn't go off. Guns don't fire unless you pull the trigger. All that crap you see and hear on the media about guns going off accidentally is just that ... crap. Get yourself a good holster that fits you, the gun, and the activity you're doing with the gun, and you'll be all set.
Originally Posted by 03mossy
Last edited by Todd; 03-05-2008 at 11:55 AM.
They tested some HK pistols with the hammer cocked and safety off. Dropped them onto a concrete slab directly on the hammer. The gun didn't fire.
Originally Posted by Todd
That being said any modern firearm is pretty safe. That is, if you do your part on safety.
As far as what to look for it's up to you. Try to find someone that owns one of the ones you're looking at and shoot it. See what you think. Maybe rent one and try it at a local range. I personally like HK pistols a lot, but they are pretty high above your price range. The cheapest HK is about $200-$300 above your set $500 limit. If you are pretty set on a striker fired pistol it's hard to beat a Glock. Many people dislike them for lack of safety, but they're as safe as any gun. You just have to be aware of yourself at all times. You can even ND (negligent discharge) a 1911 if you somehow forget to turn the safety on and you grip the pistol which engages the grip safety. You are in charge of the safety of yourself and those around you, not the gun manufacturer.
Think about this. You're in a self defense scenerio at your home, you wake up to an intruder. You reach for your gun and in the heat of the moment you forget to turn off the safety. Ugh...imagine that feeling. Now, it should be said that you have to practice turning off the safety if your gun is equipped with one. Those kinds of drills will make it second nature to "wipe the safety off".
Should have been covered in your basic handgun class.
Originally Posted by 03mossy
There are no kids in my house anymore, but I still subscribe to all the safety issues as if there were. I remember my apprehension when buying my first Glock and the "no external safety" issue.
Then I realized that almost all autos are really like revolvers. If you pull the trigger, they are going to fire. If you don't, they won't.
My suggestion would be to buy the pistol you like the most. (Once I decide on a gun, it's going to be mine for a loooooong time. I don't buy them and then trade up.) Then buy at least 2 good holsters. My favorites are Blackhawk Serpa and Galco Concealables. I don't like IWB.
But, before you do any of the above, buy a small safe with a digital and key lock. They are not expensive and will give you a lot of piece of mind. Then, just always have the mind set that there is no such thing as an "unloaded" gun.
When my kids were big enough to pull the trigger.....they did just that. I showed them all, what my revolver was all about and took all the mistery out of it. They all respected it for the power it wheeled. I stored it up high in my closet and they knew it wasn't a toy. I never had a problem. Most guys I know or have talked to who have a LOT of firearms trained their kids early and shot with their kids on a regular bases. One now has a daughter who was shooting IDPA at 16 and is now in college on a shooting scholarship. She can out shoot her dad and most of the guys now! Train em right and be a responsible gun owner and you will have no problems.
I don't know how old your kids are but if you feel you need a gun of some type for home and self defence you need to figure out a safe compromise between safe and ready. I would sleep with my loaded pistol either under my pillow or on the bedside table and unload it every morning and put it away on the top shelf of the closet for the day. A good gun safe is a good option also. If you get a concealed carry permit then you can just keep it with you most all of the time and then you know it's safe from little fingers. I still think that training your kids is the most important part of the whole thing. If you make it a big TABOO it will only spark their curriosity to explore when dad and mom aren't around. If you show them its distructive power on grapefruits and milk jugs full of water they will get the message!
If you have never shot a milk jug of water with a pistol then make sure you take more than one cause it's pretty neat stuff and one ain't enough!
I don't have much to add to the excellent responses here. My Glock is either locked up or on me and I too have showed how it operates to my seven year old daughter. She's so use to seeing me with it that the curiosity is gone from it. That said, complacency kills so I am very anal about where my guns are at all times.
I like the fact that my Glock does not have an external safety. I carried a M16 for four years everyday in the Air Force so I got use to the safety, but we also carried .38 revolvers at that time which do not have external safeties. The only time there was any problem was when I was training with another guy on a special operations team. He, for some reason, cocked the hammer and then shot the hostage by accident. Luckily it was an excursive so no one was hurt. But lesson learned.
Train with what you are comfortable with. There is no perfect gun.
Where to put the pistol when it is not on your person?
Keep the pistol loaded, 24/7. Just as the most dangerous part of flying an airplane is take-off/landing, the most dangerous part of shooting is loading/unloading. There is no reason to unload your gun when you put it in the safe, and then load it again. That's just tempting fate. As long as you keep your finger off the trigger, the gun won't fire.
The second most dangerous time is holstering/unholstering. Get a QD holster (snaps, not spring clip). When it's time to put the gun into the box, take off the holster and put the holstered gun into the box.
BTW - what's wrong with the photo of the Mini-Vault? The gun is backwards (for a right-hander). Whenever you set your pistol down on a flat surface, it should be in a position where you can pick it up by putting your shooting hand on top of it, with finger off the trigger.
The gun is in there PERFECT! (I'm a lefty )
Originally Posted by milquetoast
I've had to many problems with Ruger pistols for me to recommend one. The XD is a really good pistol, my only negative is that their bore axis is a bit higher than the others on your list, this causes more muzzle flip, in my opinion. Glocks are as reliable as any pistol can be, they are also accurate enough to do the job. The main issue I have with Glocks is that they just don't fit my hand as well as some. I really like the S&W MP pistol, have no problem owning one. You might want to check out the Walther P-99, an excellent pistol that not heavily marketed. HK pistols are nice but overpriced, especially their magazines. Personally, I'm a single action man, prefer the Browning HiPower in 9mm and .40 cal, the 1911 in .45 acp.
going to a range/shop sat. they have the xd to rent and also the glock and a bunch of others just no mp, i have no idea where to try one before i bye so that might be out of the question. any others you guys recomend i take for a spin?
My vote is for the Ruger SR9. I have 700 rounds through mine and it's been 100% reliable for me. My
wife experience a FTF due to limp wristing. The fit and finish IMO is much better than the M&P. It was
a little tight and hard to rack the slide when new, but has loosened up since.
A word of caution on the M&P pistols... there has been an issue with them dropping the magazine on
their own when being fired. It is due to a bad design of the mag release button. S&W is well aware of
the problem and sends a newer beefed up mag catch to you if you're having the problem. I bought my
M&P new and it started dropping mags at 30 rounds. The issue is not wide spread, but it happens
enough that there has been some concern on the M&P forum. I ended up trading it after it came back
from the factory for repair of the mag catch.
And my old M&P40 compared with my SR9....
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