I've owned a few revolvers but over the years of trading I have none now.For pure simplicity you really can't beat a revolver for range practice and the home.I prefer not to carry them due to the width of the cylender but the small 5 shots are do-able.
At present I'm down to a few 1911s,a Beretta 92,an HK USP45 and a Hammerli 22 sold through Sig for a shot period.I've always been a 1911 lover but the HK could possibly replace the 1911 as my favorite pistol.It's quite a large gun but I see it as an improvement on the 1911 design.A lot of people complain that they aren't cheap,and at face value they aren't,but when you actually think about it they aren't really expensive.
But back to an earlier point "by the time you draw, rack the slide, decock, safety off..."
It makesuch more sense to CARRY with a round already chambered and the safety off (my pref) or on, than to carry chamber empty. MANY debates on such to be found on here. Kind of like loading the cylinder on a revolver before holster in it.
The thing is... I'm not carrying this for concealed weapon concerns. I want this at home in case of a huge disaster. I'm not afraid to sneak up on me at any minute. I'm a first time gun owner, maybe eventually I'd feel confident in "stage 1" carry but I think for now a gun with a few safety interlocks isnt a bad thing? right?
This is strictly my opinion, and has worked in many years of firearms training, and for men and ladies alike.
Get some basic training FIRST. At this point you need fundamentals, not run and gun, or force on force. Reputable instructors will provide a host of handguns and holsters for you to experience in class. That will give you some idea of where your preferences might lead you in handgun selection. Then.....
Buy a handgun just like you would buy a pair of shoes. If Ol' Joe over here says he likes Charlie China tennis shoes, and you're looking for a new pair of shoes, do you run out and buy Joe's pick, just because HE likes 'em? Probably not. If a new shooter is asking what to buy for a carry, or home defense gun, it doesn't matter what works for me, or anyone else. I suggest telling that new shooter to go to many gun shops, and/or gun shows, and handle all the guns they can get hold of. Just like they would try on shoes. Before long they'll be able to make a list of guns that feel ok, pretty good, real good, and "that really feels great in my hands". The last two are the ones to pursue, and here's why I say that....If a given handgun doesn't feel "right" in your hands, you'll not shoot it enough to become proficient with it, because it's not comfortable, and you won't like shooting it. Just like you rarely wear shoes that are UNcomfortable. If you're not gonna become proficient with it, save your money, and buy a ball bat to carry. With proper fundamentals, he/she can learn to shoot almost any handgun, or any caliber. Very few folks can re-train their hands to make just any handgun feel comfortable. The last suggestion... again....get some more training......proper shooting techniques, practiced slowly, but proficiently, will breed speed. Do it slowly, and do it the right way, every time.......If you practice speed first, and introduce less efficient techniques into your training, you'll have to do it all over again to get it right. Most gun shops have a box of used holsters that you can experiment with after you've chosen what gun works best for you. There are many options for concealed/open carry.
By the way..... anyone who introduces a new shooter to our pastime by having them start with a large-caliber handgun, makes a very poor decision. Yes, some folks do ok starting out with large calibers, but the vast majority will not continue to shoot if their very 1st experience is with .50 S&W. Start with a .22 caliber something, and as your technique/accuracy improves, work up from there. Caliber doesn't count until after you can hit your target.
If you're buying a handgun for home protection, and you choose to NOT have it on your person, you should consider where in your home you might be if someone kicks the door in. I don't see a person in a position to be able to ask an intruder to "hang on a sec, while I get my gun"
There always will be a trade-off..... light weight, more recoil...... shorter barrel, more recoil...I've known more than a few gents who didn't care for the recoil of what's often called a "ladies gun"... just sayin....
Again, just my ramblings.... but they work for me...
Here's another point to ponder since this is for the home.A shotgun is a more effective tool.You'll want a short 18" barrel for mobility,especially if you have space issues.A pump is the most poular,you can load the mag and pump in the first round when you need to be ready to go,and the sound of pumping in that first round is known to perps as the universal lanuage of get out or this is going to hurt.
Many folks portray the shotgun as a "better" home defense weapon. As posted, a user may not have room to proficiently maneuver a shotgun indoors. A shotgun user should "pattern" the shotgun at whatever ranges would most likely be used. Contrary to some, I don't see a shotgun as a point and shoot weapon at close (15' or less) ranges.... the weapon must still be aimed.
I would strongly advise against depending at all on any sound, to deter an intruder. If racking a shotgun does happen to scare off an intruder, you're very fortunate. If racking the sound doesn't scare off the intruder, you have just signaled your presence, and likely your location.
Unless you know that there IS IN FACT, an intruder in your home, how many there are, where they are, are they armed, how are they armed, you'd be better off defending yourself, and family, in a previously established safe room, and letting law enforcement clear your house.
To each his/her own... just my two cents
I live in a condo. I'm not going to get a shotgun, and you cant take a shotgun to the range. I want a semi-auto, preferably a glock, beretta or s&w. I'm actually leavnign towards the s&w for the cost and its extra safety interlocks. I'm going to make a decision here soon.
Yep,forget that idea.
I do dissagree with some of what USMCJ said,I find the shotgun quite easy to use at close range.We used to have combat shotgun matches and out to 25,30' I could hit 8" steel lolipops from the hip on the run.Shotguns are quite easy to learn instinct or QuickKill skills with.I've also found that the average person and common grab and go thief are quite in tune with the sound of racking a pump,unless you're at the range or in a hunting party,everyone around will look when you rack the bolt open and shut.
Since you are in a condo,remember wall penetration if you need to set one off inside.Don't want to take out the neighbor too.
I ended up getting the Beretta PX4 storm 9mm, i liked the extra safety considering its my first firearm, I was on the fence between the glock g17 and the Beretta. I figure its a good start and get some more weaponry within the next year.
Thanks again for all the advice! You guys helped me out.