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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks, nice to meet you all. So I just got my first gun license, joined a club, don't really know jack, but want to buy my first handgun.
Now I've noticed I'm a decent shot with a 22 pistol, but my accuracy isn't very good with higher caliber pistols. So what handguns would you recommend that are good concealed carry, size-wise, have enough stopping power and aren't tool crazy expensive? Thank you so much for any advice you could offer, thanks, pete
 

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I would get a S&W Shield 9mm. That is the gun I just bought and as soon as I put night sights on it I will carry it daily for protection. Just use standard pressure rounds and it wont recoil too much.
 

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If you're planning on buying your first handgun, you should try to put your hands on as many handguns as possible and shoot as many as possible. Everyone has different hand shapes, sizes and finds different types of sights easier to use. The best first gun is the one that you can shoot most accurately. Once you find that, then you can start fine tuning your decision based on weight, concealability, caliber, etc.

There are gun shops that rent handguns to try before buying..... Hopefully there are some in your area......

How To Make Sure Your Handgun Fits You - My Gun Culture - A humorous look at guns and shooting

"So what handguns would you recommend that are good concealed carry, size-wise, have enough stopping power and aren't tool crazy expensive? Thank you so much for any advice you could offer, thanks, pete"
There is an array of handguns to choose from and I am sure you posts on what weapon to purchase... Most if not all will be good choices but keep in mind the recommendations are coming from personal preference.

With the amount of weapons available there is no one right one for all to carry....

Welcome to the forum and good luck.........
 

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Welcome to the site!

I'm going to move this to another forum where you will probably get more responses to your question. I'll leave a temporary link in the old location so folks can find it from there, too.
 

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Hi folks, nice to meet you all. So I just got my first gun license, joined a club, don't really know jack, but want to buy my first handgun.
Now I've noticed I'm a decent shot with a 22 pistol, but my accuracy isn't very good with higher caliber pistols. So what handguns would you recommend that are good concealed carry, size-wise, have enough stopping power and aren't tool crazy expensive? Thank you so much for any advice you could offer, thanks, pete
If you somehow find that out, please let the rest of us know.

BTW.....welcome to the forum.
 

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If you are a good shot with a mild-recoiling .22 rimfire pistol, then you can be an equally-good shot with something much more powerful.
You already know the fundamentals. You're more than halfway there.

The first thing that you need to know is that learning to shoot a small self-defense pistol is the wrong way to go.
Yes, a small pistol is easy to conceal, and easy to carry concealed.
But a small pistol of powerful caliber is very hard to control, even though you already know how to shoot.
So I suggest that your try-before-you-buy sessions should be limited to medium-size and large-size pistols.

When you shoot a more-powerful pistol, the only change in your basic technique needs to be that you hang onto it harder.
I suggest to any new self-defense shooter that you use a "death grip." Grab it tightly, and hang on with all of your might.
Even so, you still need to "isolate" your trigger finger, so that your "death grip" hold is not influenced by trigger-finger movement, and that your trigger-finger movement is not affected by your "death grip" hold. After that, it's all "sight picture and trigger press," just as with a .22 rimfire.

Start at three yards. When you can maintain a three-inch group, move back (or move the target) to five or seven yards. When you can get back to a three-inch group again, move back to 10 yards. Then 15. Then 20. Then 25. Now stop-you're done.

Next, go up against at least three targets, no closer than seven yards.

Finally, seek a self-defense-shooting teacher who has a good reputation. Do what he or she tells you to do.
 

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There is no handgun that has absolute stopping power, well maybe the .460 S&W magnum, so whatever gun you can hit with reliably is the way to go. If that is a .22 magnum so be it, I would "suggest" a mid size to full size 9mm as a start and then get good instruction as Steve mentioned. The instruction will do more for you than buying a "perfect" gun that someone else suggests. Learning how to shoot defensively is something that takes practice and a lot of it. Learning the combat mindset is essential, learning when NOT to shoot is priceless, learning what to do after a shooting can keep you out of jail. There is so much more to self-defense than just buying a gun and sticking in you pocket and maybe going to the range every couple of months. There is a great deal of responsibility that goes with our "right" to keep and bear arms.
 

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pedro45:
You might want to look at the CZ 75 Compact all steel .9mm or the Canik Stingray (CZ clone) also all steel. The CZ sells for about $570, the Canik about $370. I have the CZ's, they have excellent ergonomics and mild recoil to me it's almost like shooting a .22 only it's a "nine". Although I've never owned, only handled them, the Canik appears to be a good value for the money. If your recoil sensitive go for the all steel models. I think that the Canik Stingray only comes in steel. The CZ 75 Compact is all steel, the CZ P-01 and the CZ 75 D PCR Compact have alloy frames, the CZ P-01 has a light rail. The CZ Compact and the Canik Stingray (CZ clone) although they are compact versions of their full sized pistols with shorter grip frames, the grip is still large enough to get all 3 fingers around it, if that may be an issue for you. In my opinion the CZ Compacts are a nearly perfectly designed pistol. I highlighted the ones to look for if you decide to go that route.
 

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Got your "1st gun license".

Since we don't know what state you live in;

Is it a license to own?
OR;
Is it a license to carry concealed.

If it is a license to carry concealed, how do you plan to carry?
Outside the waistband in a holster?
Inside the waistband?
Pocket carry?
Ankle holster?

These are things that determine the type of weapon you need.
 

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60 years old and never had a handgun, other than a 22 ???

This calls for some serious professional training at an indoor range.

Otherwise you are very likely to shoot yourself.
 

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60 years old and never had a handgun, other than a 22 ???

This calls for some serious professional training at an indoor range.

Otherwise you are very likely to shoot yourself.
Don't understand where you are coming from by sayin he needs professional training or might shoot himself...... He is 60 not 6 and he also has the plus of actually firing a firearm..... Yes it is a 22 so I do not see him having any problem shooting any of the normal caliber/mm that are available in either a semi automatic or revolver firearm....

Pedro welcome aboard the firearm owners club and happy shooting...........
 

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Cait43:
"Don't understand where you are coming from by sayin he needs professional training or might shoot himself."
I was thinking the same thing, safely handling a .22 is no different than safely handling a weapon of a larger caliber. Pedro45 is simply looking for a handgun of a larger caliber that he can shoot accurately yet have adequate stopping power. His question is directed at those of us who own and shoot guns in that category. There's no need to question his ability to safely handle a firearm. You've given him sound advise on how to go about choosing one. I suggested the all steel Compact CZ 9mm's or their clones as a starting point, because of their excellent ergonomics and relatively mild recoil. Their compact models while not pocket pistols can easily be concealed under a loose shirt in an outside the waistband holster. Based on his comments I couldn't recommend any of the pocket pistols of any serious caliber, or any of the lightweight guns for that matter.
 

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Steve's advice is good, as usual.

If you can shoot a .22, you can apply the same techniques to larger guns. The noise and anticipation of recoil are what you must learn to handle. Good ear protection and proper gripping techniques and lots of repetitions will eventually solve your mystery. There are dozens of good self defense handguns out there that you will like or dislike when you pick them up the first time. If you can shoot, you will be able to adapt to any of them. Buy a good one with a respected brand name and shoot it a lot. ALWAYS wear ear protection and practice methodically.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Wow, I'm a member of a few forums online, a travel forum and a music forum, and I tell you, you can ask those sites questions but don't hold your breath waiting for an answer. I am blown away at the quick and thoughtful responses I've received here. I'm joining a second club, going to do a lot of shooting and take some lessons as well. An important thing I failed to mention is that I live in Massachusetts, and being brand new to this game I had NO idea that Mass was considered one of the worst states for a gun owner, even more so for a concealed carrier. Additionally, it doesn't even seem easy to find out exactly what the darn rules are! Anyway, I travel a lot and a friend suggested getting a Utah LTC because of the many states they seem to have reciprocity with. Now I don't know if places rent guns in my area, I haven't heard of that, but man that would be great. So again, thanks so much for the advice! I'm taking it to heart and have already researched a number of the guns mentioned here, as well as the great gun videos on Youtube. Cheers
 

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pedro45:
Getting the Utah permit is a good idea. Getting out of Massachusetts would be a better one if at all possible. They don't want to make it easy to know what the rules are. It's called entrapment my friend, these rules are specifically designed for political retribution. In other words, how can they criminalize the behavior of their political enemies using the full force of government and the power of law to enforce it? Gun ownership is an easy target. They are able to use emotionalism, fear and the exploitation of mass murder to accomplish this. You either have to get used to it in some states, get out, or be willing to relinquish your civil rights altogether. It's easier to fight on a national level than it is with your own state government. I wish this weren't so but that's the way it is. Whatever you decide to do I wish you the best of luck.
 

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Being a Mass. Resident poses several problems;

Your Utah permit is NOT valid in Mass.
You need a permit to possess ANY firearm.
You need a Mass. license to carry concealed. Different license from the permit to own,
You can not carry a handgun in your vehicle unless you have a Mass. license to carry concealed.
 

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Being a Mass. Resident poses several problems;

Your Utah permit is NOT valid in Mass.
You need a permit to possess ANY firearm.
You need a Mass. license to carry concealed. Different license from the permit to own,
You can not carry a handgun in your vehicle unless you have a Mass. license to carry concealed.
Geez......sounds like you're describing some remote 3rd world country. :rolleyes:
 

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paratrooper:
"Geez......sounds like you're describing some remote 3rd world country."
Massachusetts is indeed a third world country. Unfortunately it's got plenty of company, enough to make a difference in our presidential elections. For Christ's sake we're all supposed to be Americans isn't every one of us entitled to the same basic human rights? I just can't believe that so many people who live in these states are willing to give up their freedoms so easily, to a bunch of loathsome corrupt politicians.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
thanks everyone, seriously, this has been a fount of info; in fact, tomorrow I'm going to visit a number of gun shops, but also practice at the range.
 

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60 years old and never had a handgun, other than a 22 ???

This calls for some serious professional training at an indoor range.

Otherwise you are very likely to shoot yourself.
Sorry, have to take issue w/this post. Obtained my CCP @ age 60 and my first EDC/CCW was a Kel-Tec P11. Had never fired a HG in my entire life. 19 practice shots on our makeshift home property range. We live WAY out in the country and have a dry creek in between 2 hills w/about a 50-75 foot vertical drop. It's perfect. Took the class and scored an 82 out of 100 on the target portion. However, there were none off the paper just out of the 'kill zone'. This w/o a micro-second of 'professional training'. There are plenty of videos online regarding proper shooting techniques, so I just watched a few before the range/class. Was the first pull of the trigger on a 9mm HG unnerving? You bet! By the 2nd mag I'd settled down to the point where I was able to keep them all in a 9" circle @ 25 feet.

There were many, many cautions about hand-placement, 'limp-wristing', re-set, follow-up shots, etc. in the videos I watched. The toughest part of having started w/a KT P11 wasn't shooting it was loading. :oops: The 'double stack' mags are tough at first. It's all a matter of sense referencing, though. Once I got a feel for how to hold the mag and push each round in it's 2nd nature now.

Now my wife who was 50 at the time w/a military bg scored a 92 w/a borrowed Glock .45! She had the same amount of shooting time w/t P 11 as me. None w/t .45 she borrowed/rented from the instructer. We bought a box of re-loads he would bring to his classes in various calibers. She was one of the first female NCO West Point candidates ever and was an Expert in both the M-16 and 1911. Testing w/t 1911 was in anticipation of acceptance to WP. She was one of 2 out of her battalion selected. The other candidate was male. After much soul-searching she decided not to pursure the military as a career choice. Much to the chagrin of her company and battalion commanders. Point being she hadn't shot a HG in over 25 years.

So, it would seem best to not make suppositions regarding HG proficiency potential based on anything. At, least not w/o serious professional training. Otherwise, the foot one shoots may very well be one's own! :smt1099

My personal suggestion to the OP echos previous posts. Shoot as many pistols/revolvers as possible. There is always going to be a level of compromise between price, size, weight, concealability, ammo cost and accessory options. For example my wife carries our P11 w/C.O.P. 115 gr +p JHP in fair weather and a mix of FMJ and JHP in winter as clothing is generally more thick. 115 gr +P is the 'hottest' round recommended for a KT P11. My EDC? Laugh haters, but my choice is a Sterling Arms 300 .25 acp manufactured in Gasport, NY sometime between '72-'76. All machined steel. I use a mix of PMC Bronze 50 gr FMJ and Remington 50 gr FMJ. Why a weak .25 round pistol? Because it's a 6 + 1, all steel, easily concealable, I can place all 7 shots in 6-9" groupings w/my off hand from 25 ft and there's always ammo available at WM for 25 acp.

If I upgrade I'm getting a Magnum Arms .380 Micro Desert Eagle. I've shot everything in .380 except a MPA Protector 2 and a Seecamp. The NAA Guardian was ok, but the MDE just fit my hand better and is a much higher quality piece. Polymer while nice and light is a detriment to accurate follow-ups w/o extensive and regular range time. Who can afford that given the cost of even 'practice quality' .380? The MDE has all the features I want in a EDC. All machined steel, heavy DAO trigger, accurate, weight allowing for consistant follow-ups and, frankly it's butt-ugly. That fact appeals to me on some level.
 
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