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Thread: Maryland Newbie

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    sje0123's Avatar
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    Maryland Newbie

    I'm new here and to the world of guns. At the moment I am looking around and doing some research. I'd like to get into recreational shooting as well as have a gun available when needed for personal protection (In my home).

    What should I be looking at as far as a starter gun? What are some manufacturers who make guns for a newbie such as myself? What caliber should I be looking at?

    Is there a website or anything that helped anyone along with making choices on guns or desciding what you wanted other than here?

    How do I go about learning my local laws about guns? Where can I find a shooting range near me?

    Thanks everyone, I'll keep browsing around for more info.

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    For laws - check www.packing.org. Of course, there is no substitute for getting it from the horse's mouth. I would research on that site, talk to some employees at your local gun stores (go to a few, incase you get mixed messages), and take a local NRA class, or some other type of gun education class.

    As for guns - Man, I promise you that you will get different answers and suggestions from everyone. U will get advice here stating that you should start w/ a revolver, and also some that says to start with a .22, to get a certain brand, etc, etc, etc.

    The truth is, you should find a place that will rent various guns (I have a local range that rents them for $5 each, but of course you must buy the ammo from the range if U use a range gun). Find out what you like the most. Grip the various guns - see what is most comfortable. Then, try shooting them. A gun might be comfortable to hold, but not necessarily to shoot.

    I don't necessarily buy into the "you have to start w/ a .22 argument" that some here will tell U. Personally, I think I would have found that boring. I have recently taken my 67 year old mother out to the range for her 1st time shooting a gun ever. And, the same for my wife. Both shot a 9mm just fine.

    Any of the brand names are good - Springfield, Beretta, Glock, Walther, Ruger, CZ, and HK, just to name a few. But, by renting and trying the guns, you will see the style you want - a gun with a safty/without one. A gun with an external hammer/a gun without one. A metal gun/a polymer gun. A double action/single action gun, or a gun that is consistent on every shot.

    I have my favorite, but if you really are that new and have no one to show U, then you should seek instruction locally, and also find what works for you. Me telling U what to buy won't do U much good.

    By having someone teach you, U will also learn how to hold a gun. The trick of SQUEEZING the trigger right to the breaking point before you actually fire the gun (not jerking it), how to stand, etc.
    Last edited by Shipwreck; 07-05-2006 at 11:08 PM.

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    Thank you. I understand completely what you are saying. I won't know until I try. At this moment I am browsing around and found a NRA "Basic Pistol" safety course locally. I am contacting the instructor to find out more details. Would this be something good to get me started? I believe there is a range closer than where the class is that i will have to stop in and see if they rent guns.

    Thanks for the help.

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    Welcome, glad you're here! New guy buys the cigars.
    That said, what do you want to do with your gun? Do you want to shoot paper, cans, clay pidgeons, hunt, CCW, home defense let us know what you want to do and we'll be glad to help you.

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    The gun will be for home protection as well as a gun to use as a hobby. I'm not looking to get into competition or anything yet. I just want something new to learn on.

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    Yes, take the NRA class - and before U go, make a list of questions to ask. After the class, or during the break - go ask him your questions (about laws, etc).

    Then, see what he recommends for the next step.

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    Welcome & Howdy from Texas. Much as I hate to say it, a 9mm would probably be a good all around caliber for starters, until, of course, you get familiar with pistols and get your 1911 .45 cal .

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    Howdy!!

    I was in Salisbury MD earlier this spring....

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    Thumbs up

    Hey there,
    there's different folks with different tastes... you need to find out what works for you. Some indoor gun ranges will "rent" you different types & calibers of weapons.... maybe you could "test drive" a few different types...

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    P97
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    Quote Originally Posted by rustycompass
    Hey there,
    there's different folks with different tastes... you need to find out what works for you. Some indoor gun ranges will "rent" you different types & calibers of weapons.... maybe you could "test drive" a few different types...
    Welcome and I fully agree with this post.

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    Thank you for the help everyone. I will be making a trip down to the local shooting range tomorrow to sign up for an NRA Basic Pistol Class.

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    all signed up and ready to go. I start the class August 9th. I can't wait.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sje0123
    all signed up and ready to go. I start the class August 9th. I can't wait.
    Wow, U are lucky. Despite all the stuff in my town, to my knowledge, there is no such course here. Glad U found one.

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    yeah I just went to NRA's website and located a class nearby. I'm lucky to have one. I don't know anyone who would teach me anything and the class shows you how guns work, how to clean them, and shoot them and all.

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    That is great

    I just figured it out on my own over time. But that is good. If you can have someone show U some basics on shooting technique, then U will be set. I sucked badly until someone gave me a few tips.

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    Welcome aboard,as you can see I'm new here myself .You have some good ideas from the other guys around the forum.I'll think you'll see WHAT KIND OF STATE YOU LIVE IN WITH THE N.R.A. COURSE
    Maryland does not appear to be very gun friendly,so it's will be up to folks like you to change things up there.My $0.02 worth,start with lower calibers,.22lr,.38spl and 9mm before you get in the heavys .357mag,.44mag and .45acp. I still follow this rule when I go shooting,like streching before a good workout.Enjoy your new sport and let us help you with any questions you might have.J.R.
    Last edited by J.R.; 07-09-2006 at 07:27 AM.

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    Good advice - back when I had other calibers besides 9mm - if I took a 9mm and a 45 to the range to shoot, I did shoot the 9mm first. Otherwise, if I shot the 45 and then switched to the 9, my aim would be messed up.

    Be aware that you may have some "know it alls" at the class who will tell U to avoid 9mm, and you MUST get a .40 cal, or the newer .357 Sig caliber. For a total newbie, I don't think .40 is a good start. A lot of new people buy it and regret it. Then end up selling the gun and getting a 9mm.

    Once you take the class, and you want to buy your 1st handgun - 9mm is perfectly fine for a semi-auto. If you want a revolver instead, buy a .357.

    .357 revolvers can use two types of ammo - the higher powered .357, but they can also use .38 ammo. That is a good, cheap round to practice with. And, it is still potent. Police carried that round for years. My father had a 357 for years. Of course, the fool kept it in a plastic bag, and probably never changed the ammo for 20 years - When I cleaned it for him a couple years back, I bought him some .38 ammo hollow points for him to keep in it. Less recoil for someone not too used to a gun, and they still do the job.

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    I have been doing a ton of looking around here and all over the internet for information. I think the 9mm Walther P99 is probably at the top of my list at this point. Seems to be a very good gun. Do I have the right idea? Will it be good for me as a first gun?

    I probably will not be buying my own gun for some time as I want to make sure I get the one I want and that I am interested in owning one at all.

    You (J.R.) are correct in saying MD is not gun friendly, but would be more correct saying handgun. You do not need any paperwork to purchase a rifle or shotgun, but have to go through a lot of stuff to get a handgun. However, I think by taking this class and becoming certified I will have it much easier than if I had not taken the class. I will probably never be granted a conceiled carry permit though.

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    Well, the Walther P99 is my all time fav gun. Be aware that there are 2 different trigger styles - the QA is the same on every shot - but a bit too heavy of a trigger pull for my tastes.

    The A/S is the one everyone wants. They were no longer imported after the end of 2005 - so have been hard to find. S&W just recently started to bring some new ones into the country - so, U may have to have a dealer order U one, because they really haven't made it onto the shelves again in a widespread way.

    I got a fullsize A/S 2 weeks ago - dealer had to order it. I already had a compact P99 and a SW99 (basically, a Smith clone of the P99 A/S). Great first choice

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    I figured you would agree.

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