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  1. #1
    hickracefan is offline Junior Member
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    looking for a .40 S&W

    Hello! I'm looking to purchase my first handgun and considering a .40 S&W. I've never been around handguns but alot of people have recommended a 9mm for a person new to handguns but i want something a little bigger. I'll be using it for personal defense and just to shoot. Once i get aquainted with the gun i will get conceal and carry. My question is about what is a good and reliable brand/model? I like the looks of the CZ 75B and the Springfield XD's...just looking for a good gun that reliable and has good quality and service! Thanks

  2. #2
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    If you like the CZ 75, which I don't believe has a .40 counterpart, you may want to consider a Beretta 96fs. It is the .40 cal version of the 92 and a close metal-framed competitor of CZ. If you like polymer guns like the XD, consider a S&W M&P .40, or a Glock (not sure which model is the .40. Someone will tell you) Those are the first ones that come to mind and the S&Ws and Glocks both have compact versions.

    Edit: Oh ya, duh, the XD also comes in a full or compact .40!

  3. #3
    HK Dan is offline Member
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    Hey guy! .40 may not be the best caliber to start with.With your experience level it is a recipe for developing a flinch. I would echo the advice to start with a full sized 9mm or maybe even a .22LR like a Browning Buckmark or Ruger Mk III. The .40 has a snappy recoil that borders on vicious. It doesn't hurt, but it is so sudden and so sharp that many people new to guns consider it unpleasant. That's because the .40 has such a high chamber pressure compared to other loadings--some break 36000psi, where 9mm is only 20000 to 25000.

    With regard to models--the right gun to start with isn't the right gun to carry. A Beretta 96 is a great gun to start with and a horrible gun for carry, for instance. Something like a GLOCK 23 would be a fantastic gun for carry, but not so good to start with. So, my advice is to buy a starter gun now and a carry gun when you're ready for that evolution. Baby steps, brother, baby steps. I would honestly--truly--pick up a Buckmark and learn to shoot well and have fun. Then, get a 9mm and move into centerfire (it's also a great carry caliber, though I carry .40....LOL)

    That's my advice!
    Dan

  4. #4
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    CZ does indeed make a .40 S&W version of their 75 series, I'm actually considering a CZ85 Combat (in .40 S&W) as my next semi auto. I own a CZ75BD (9 mm), a fine weapon. I also own a XD40SC, it's one of my carry guns. XDs are fine weapons.
    As stated previously, a .40 may not be an ideal first handgun. If you insist on pressing forward with a .40, I would recommend that you test fire a few to see how you like it. My XD40SC isn't horrible but it does take a fair amount of practice to shoot well.
    Can an inexperienced person get proficient with a .40 S&W? Yes. But it will likely take more effort and ammo.
    I recommend the CZ in either caliber (though 9mm is probably the better choice), & you immediately consider the CZ Kadet Kit (.22). It is a bit pricier than some kits. IMHO it's worth every cent, accurate and reliable. It will give you the opportunity to put thousands of rds through your gun for a fraction of the price of centerfire ammo.

  5. #5
    hickracefan is offline Junior Member
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    Yea, i'll take yall's advice and start with a 9mm to get the "mechanics" down and learn to shoot properly and get comfortable with it and then jump up when the time is ready. A lot of people say the 9mm has no knock down power should someone break in or whatever and always recommend something bigger regardless of my experience level...to me its about where you hit them.

  6. #6
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    ozzy is offline Member
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    I would try to find a gun store with a range and handgun rentals and try a few out first. The larger calibers might be ok for you maybe not. I myself prefer a .40

  7. #7
    Packard is offline Senior Member
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    My recommendation for a first weapon tends towards a mid-sized .380 or a full sized 9mm.

    A .380 like the Bersa or a Walther PPKS or a Beretta Cheetah is a good starting weapon. The recoil is mild, the weapon has a full sized grip and is fairly heavy so as to minimize the felt recoil. And they can be carried concealed fairly easily.

    The 9mm alternative might include any of the full medium sized Glocks or any of the better full-sized or compact weapons from Sig, S & W, Ruger, etc.

    Starting with a .40, a .45, or a 10mm will probably slow your progress rather than speed it.

    Also starting with a subcompact like the Ruger LC9 or a Kel-tec PF9 may also slow your progress as the weapons are too small to get a really good grip on and light weight enough that the felt recoil will be very substantial.

  8. #8
    HK Dan is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by hickracefan View Post
    A lot of people say the 9mm has no knock down power should someone break in or whatever and always recommend something bigger regardless of my experience level...to me its about where you hit them.
    There is wisdom in your words Sir. I have never felt under armed when carrying a 9mm. Reknowned instructor Dr Jim Williams put it best--"You can't tell from the wound channel whether he was shot by a 9mm, .40, or a .45. The wound is the same for any service caliber handgun." They don't vaporize when ya hit 'em with a .45, and they don't chuckle when ya hit 'em with a 9mm. Same/same and all that matters is where you hit him and how often he gets hit there. Consider a GLOCK--the have really nice .22 conversion kits available so you can shoot 9mm at the beginning of a range session and .22LR at the end (or how ever you want)

  9. #9
    hickracefan is offline Junior Member
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    Yea i'm gunna go to a gun store across town that has a shooting range upstairs and see if they will let me shoot something and see what feels good. I really like the look of the springfield xd's, both black and black/silver, and they come with a case and some accessories which is nice. We have a couple gun shows coming to town within the next month or so and plan to check them out for some deals on new firearms.

  10. #10
    hickracefan is offline Junior Member
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    I went and looked at some guns, but was unable to fire any. I was impressed with Smith and Wesson M&P 9mm and the Springfield XD 9mm, they felt good. Both guns come with a little kit of extra mags and etc...anyone know much about these two guns and have first hand experience?

  11. #11
    ozzy's Avatar
    ozzy is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by hickracefan View Post
    I went and looked at some guns, but was unable to fire any. I was impressed with Smith and Wesson M&P 9mm and the Springfield XD 9mm, they felt good. Both guns come with a little kit of extra mags and etc...anyone know much about these two guns and have first hand experience?
    Both are well made guns and you found out something I forgot to mention, you like the feel of them. That's very important, I myself have a Taurus PT 140 because it was the only pistol that felt right to me. I've put many rounds through it without any problems and I can shoot it very accurately. If you don't like the gun you may not carry it, good luck in your choice.

  12. #12
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    I just bought the M&P 9 Carry and Range kit (holster, mag pouch, extra mag) a couple months ago. Great gun, great deal! Shot before I bought, easiest buying decision ever!

  13. #13
    hickracefan is offline Junior Member
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    I also forgot to mention the Walther P99 was a pretty nice gun too. The guy behind the counter said Walther has a lifetime warranty, but didnt see that on their website unless i over looked it?

  14. #14
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    Walther is distributed by Smith & Wesson. Smith & Wesson has a lifetime warranty. Guess that means Walthers do to.

  15. #15
    HK Dan is offline Member
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    I'd stay the Hell away from Taurus autos, and I'd likewise disregard XDs. M&P? That's a gun. GLOCK--there's a keeper. XDs sit too high in the hand and have a grip safety. They are slower than GLOCK or M&P and I can show you how much slower on a shot timer. Taurus are simply put, crap guns. THis is from personal experience when I was new to the game, and they will never see another thin dime of my money.

  16. #16
    Old_Sport is offline Junior Member
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    The .380 Cheetah would be a good choice but slid is very stif your wife won't like it. I have a Browning BDA and wife can't work the slide A Sig P226 or 229 in 40 S& W is a fine pistol heavy gun so recoil is not that bad. The Beretta 92fs (9MM) or 96fs (40 S & W). are both fine pistols. These are all guns you can depend on being acurate out of the box. Caliber won't matter. if you invest in time and practice . Don't be afraid of the .380 or 9 not having "it". Its where you place the round. My choice for anyone is the Sig P226 40 S&W. Take this with a grain of salt, there are as many diferant ideas on this as there are gun models. Do your reserch and be satisfied with YOUR choice.

  17. #17
    Packard is offline Senior Member
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    A little heresy here. A small revolver might do the trick. Light and easy to carry. No safety to worry about. As nearly perfectly reliable as is possible for a handgun. Shoots a major caliber. And no difficult slide to jack back.

    But...only 5 rounds then time to reload.

    Personally I think a revolver is an excellent choice for a first weapon. The battery of arms is as simple as possible. The full shroud makes it DAO. It's just point and pull the trigger.

    I would choose a fully shrouded weapon, preferably with laser sights. Both S & W and Ruger make resin versions that have recieved good reviews.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Packard View Post
    A little heresy here. A small revolver might do the trick. Light and easy to carry. No safety to worry about. As nearly perfectly reliable as is possible for a handgun. Shoots a major caliber. And no difficult slide to jack back.

    But...only 5 rounds then time to reload.

    Personally I think a revolver is an excellent choice for a first weapon. The battery of arms is as simple as possible. The full shroud makes it DAO. It's just point and pull the trigger.

    I would choose a fully shrouded weapon, preferably with laser sights. Both S & W and Ruger make resin versions that have recieved good reviews.
    Packard has a good idea to consider.
    A year ago last September I bought the exact revolver he describes.
    The S&W 642 Centennial .38 Special. Aluminum frame, concealed hammer, weighs 15 oz. unloaded. $400. I added Crimson Trace laser grips for $218.
    The "plastic frame" Ruger LCR is a similiar snubby, and can be had with laser grips. I've fired one a bunch, and like it. Under $400.
    The "new" plastic frame S&W Bodyguard .38 Special snubby also comes with a laser. More expensive, I think ?
    A laser is highly recommended. Both for dry-fire and live-fire practice.

    My snubby is a very good friend and keeper.
    But, I'm fickle. I just added a SIG Sauer P290 9mm "sub-compact" semi-auto for CCW.
    You can never have too many guns, or too much ammo.

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