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  1. #1
    Cheetos is offline Junior Member
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    First time handgun

    I have been looking for a while now at handguns. I want something for home defense and occasionally take to the range along with my rifle. I have been looking at Ruger SP101 and GP100 .357 mags and the Taurus model 66 .357 mag. I also like some of the .40 cal semi autos. There are so many out there it's mind boggling. I am looking for suggestions and advice on potential choices for a first handgun.

  2. #2
    hideit's Avatar
    hideit is offline Senior Member
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    9mm for semiauto - least expensive ammo for the centerfire handguns
    .357's are the most popular revolvers

    you have a lot of guns to choose from
    suggest you read more threads on this forum and rent some guns to get the feel that you want for your specific hand
    I like:
    9mm full size - glock 17 or 19 and Beretta 92fs
    .357's - 6" barrel - S&W 686, Ruger SP101
    most readers here will discourage you not to get the Taurus

  3. #3
    genesis is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheetos View Post
    I have been looking for a while now at handguns. I want something for home defense and occasionally take to the range along with my rifle. I have been looking at Ruger SP101 and GP100 .357 mags and the Taurus model 66 .357 mag. I also like some of the .40 cal semi autos. There are so many out there it's mind boggling. I am looking for suggestions and advice on potential choices for a first handgun.
    Hi Cheetos. There really is a plethora of extremely fine guns in today's market. Any of your choices would be fine. Go to youtube and do a search on any gun you're interested in. You will find a ton of gun review videos there. Watching these vids has become addictive for me. Don't just run out and buy a gun. Do your homework and educate yourself. Think about how you would use a new gun (woods carry, self defense, concealed carry, plinking, range gun, etc.) I have a 4" Ruger GP100, which I would never part with. I also have a Ruger SR40C. I have a bunch of guns (both autos and revolvers, and black powder). My favorite gun is always the one I just finished shooting !

    A 9MM is probably a good choice to start with as the ammo is cheaper (relatively speaking). If ya can't afford ta shoot it a lot, it ain't worth having. Visit lots of gun shops and handle lots of guns. Rent some if you can to see how they shoot. Just take your time.

    Start watching those videos ! A good place to start is by watching Hickok45 on youtube. He has almost 700 gun review videos, and does a really excellent job.
    http://www.youtube.com/user/hickok45/videos?view=0

    Don <><

  4. #4
    sgms is offline Member
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    The 9m/m is a good caliber for a first semi auto pistol and the ammunition is the lest expensive center fire cartridge currently.
    The .38 specials and the .357 magnums do cost more per round than the 9 m/m but the revolver is a simpler gun to learn how to use competently. So if you are/can/will not put in the practice time and get some training the revolver might be a better option.

  5. #5
    genesis is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by sgms View Post
    The 9m/m is a good caliber for a first semi auto pistol and the ammunition is the lest expensive center fire cartridge currently.
    The .38 specials and the .357 magnums do cost more per round than the 9 m/m but the revolver is a simpler gun to learn how to use competently. So if you are/can/will not put in the practice time and get some training the revolver might be a better option.
    Well said Sgms. I agree 100%. In fact, my GP100 is my nightstand gun, and my Ruger SR40C with the 15 round mag is my New York reload.

    Don <><

  6. #6
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    goNYG is offline Member
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    Here are just a few suggestions for you to research and try out if you can (I've ignored pricing considerations b/c you did not mention it):
    Ruger SR9
    CZ-75 or P-01 or RAMI series
    Beretta PX4 Storm
    Armalite 24
    FNX-9
    Springfield XD and XDMs
    S&W M&P
    H&K P30

  7. #7
    SonnyMorales is offline Junior Member
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    I also agree with watching Hickok45 videos, he more than likely has a review on the gun you are interested in..and does a good non biased review

    What is the price range? as stated above, its hard to suggest something not knowing how much you are willing to spend

  8. #8
    rex
    rex is offline Senior Member
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    First thing you need to do is shoot a revolver and auto to see which you like better,they're 2 totally different designs.You may like both or one over the other.A revolver is simpler to operate but it isn't safer than an auto.Whatever you're trying needs to feel good in your hand,if you have small hands target stocks or certain high capacity frames may be too big for example.Then start narrowing down models of the design you like.

    Good pick on the calibers,both are good rounds.

  9. #9
    Cheetos is offline Junior Member
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    I have been watching so many videos on youtube my wife asked me if I found the end of the internet yet! I have visited some gun shops to get a feel for what I might be interested in. So many to choose from! I was kind of ruling out the 9mm. I had read and was told it wasn't a good home defense gun. That is why I was looking at the .40 and .357. I really like the way the .357 feels. I am planning on going to a range that rents guns so I can fire a couple to see which I like better. I have shot 9mms, .380s, and .22s and wasn't very impressed with them. My price range is up to $1000.

  10. #10
    SonnyMorales is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheetos View Post
    I have been watching so many videos on youtube my wife asked me if I found the end of the internet yet! I have visited some gun shops to get a feel for what I might be interested in. So many to choose from! I was kind of ruling out the 9mm. I had read and was told it wasn't a good home defense gun. That is why I was looking at the .40 and .357. I really like the way the .357 feels. I am planning on going to a range that rents guns so I can fire a couple to see which I like better. I have shot 9mms, .380s, and .22s and wasn't very impressed with them. My price range is up to $1000.
    well with $1000 price range than you will be in good hands no matter which way you go...this is just my opinion and everyone will have one, but caliber is just a preference thing in my eyes..so dont get caught up in the "this is better HD round than that" non sense...get something that you are comfortable with and can afford to practice with..

    it is no good if you dont know how to use it

  11. #11
    Cheetos is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by SonnyMorales View Post
    well with $1000 price range than you will be in good hands no matter which way you go...this is just my opinion and everyone will have one, but caliber is just a preference thing in my eyes..so dont get caught up in the "this is better HD round than that" non sense...get something that you are comfortable with and can afford to practice with..

    it is no good if you dont know how to use it
    OK so when I go to the range to try out some guns I will try out some other calibers also. I am not new to shooting guns just to owning a handgun.

  12. #12
    genesis is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheetos View Post
    I have been watching so many videos on youtube my wife asked me if I found the end of the internet yet!
    Hey Cheetos! I warned ya that watching those vids can become addictive. But it's well worth the time spent as you educate yourself about handguns. Don't run out just yet and buy a handgun. And don't rule out the 9MM. It's just as good as any of the other common defense calibers. And the 9MM is the cheapest ammo to buy (relatively speaking) at around $10 a box. It's not the gun or caliber, or how much you spend that counts. What will save your buns is your gun skills (practical, tactical, and marksmanship) and your presence of mind. So don't get all caught up in that power trip thing. Get what ever gun you really like (revolver or auto) and can afford to practice with A LOT. 98% of the people who own guns for security can't hit squat because they never or seldom practice. And when they do practice, they practice the wrong stuff. They're living under a false sense of security. In fact, that gun will probably get them killed if they ever had to use it. (i.e. They shoot at the bad guy/s and miss and the bad guy/s shoot back and kill them.) Don't be part of that 98%. Learn how to quickly end a confrontation and not start a gun fight. If you're gonna get a handgun for self defense, learn about tactical self defense with a handgun. It much more than just pointing and pulling the trigger. But don't get paranoid about this stuff. Take it seriously, but have fun with it. Get your wife involved to.

    With that $1000, you could get something like a Ruger SR9C ($400) and 3000 rounds of 9MM practice ammo ($200 per 1000 at http://www.ammoforsale.com/) Hickok45 has reviewed the Ruger SR9C. Check it out. He really liked it. But if you prefer a revolver, then go with it.

    Go to youtube and do a search on "practical shooting", "defensive shooting", "tactical shooting", etc. You get the picture. And tell your wife that the internet is eternal.

    Ain't pick'n out a new gun FUN ! ! !

    Semper Fi

    Don <><

  13. #13
    Cheetos is offline Junior Member
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    Awesome info! Thank you! I will look into the different shooting methods. My wife is starting to get interested in guns recently. She got to shoot a 10/22 and and AR15. I also signed her up for a learn to shoot program where she learned the fundamentals of a handgun and got to shoot a 100 rounds. Now she wants to go gun shopping with me!

  14. #14
    Cheetos is offline Junior Member
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    I committed on a Taurus model 66. It was between the Ruger GP100, S&W 686+, and the Taurus. I have spent 2 weekends with it at the range and she sure is mighty fine!

  15. #15
    BowerR64 is offline Junior Member
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    Ive been looking at some guns also because i inhearited like 15 guns from my dad recently. Ive been shooting a few of them but most i dont think ide ever fire like black powder revolvers and the black powder rifles he had.

    I was thinking about trading a few for a few i would actually shoot.

    a few things i found after shooting them is a few things you might look at.

    Dan wesson 15 revolver, very big gun and needs a good size case to keep it in. I like the way it looks alot but its only limited to 6 shots each time i load it. I like having the options to shoot very mild .38 rounds, medium .38+P of the powerful feeling .357 mag ammo. I also like when done shooting you can simply tilt the cylinder over a bowl and all the shells drop into the bowl no big mess to clean up like the 9mm. I feel im more accurate with the revolver also.

    I have a ruger P89 9mm and i like how cheap the ammo is but when shooting it i still feel like im shooting a very powerful gun. Even though its seems cheap it doesnt feel like a toy when shooting it like a .22. Noq not saying a .22 is a toy but when other shooters are shooting AR15s and 223s in the stalls next to me a .22 sounds and feels like a cap gun.

    I like the hammer on the P89, I like the metal trigger, i like how big it feels. i dont care for its plastic grips BUT i can change them to the hougue or others.

    My friend has the SR9 it feels thin, the slide seems SUPER stiff and hard to pull, no hammer, the trigger is plastic/composit, cant change the grips. I do like that his came with 3 mags that hold 17 rounds each! he put a full box of ammo into his and it all fit into his stock box. ALOT of fire power in that little box. His also has the rails on the front for mounting a light or laser to the front for something extra to dial in. My P89 doesnt have the rails.

    So when i go looking again these are a few things that im looking for if i can find it, a metal trigger, a hammer, more magazines the better, mounting rails, a decent grip that i can change or replace.

    I doubt i could find something that has all these but they are just a few dumb little things i found i do and dont like so far. I wouldnt of thought if i hadnt shot what i already have so far and also shooting my friends

  16. #16
    BowerR64 is offline Junior Member
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    I cant believe it! it didnt take that much searching, i guess i needed to get a little more picky on the things i wanted because i actually found something that had EVERYTHING i wanted. It was a little more then i wanted to pay ofcorse but i think ill be happy with this one.

    I cant wait to shoot it.


  17. #17
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    Masteryoung is offline Junior Member
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    Well the first handgun I purchased was a Highpoint 9mm. I know i will get bashed for this but it was cheap and i didnt want to spend too much if i didnt like it. The next gun i purchased was a Keltec 380. I like them both but having big hands the 380 hurts to shoot.

  18. #18
    bassjam04 is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by BowerR64 View Post
    I cant believe it! it didnt take that much searching, i guess i needed to get a little more picky on the things i wanted because i actually found something that had EVERYTHING i wanted. It was a little more then i wanted to pay ofcorse but i think ill be happy with this one.

    I cant wait to shoot it.

    Probably my next gun purchase! Very nice.

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