I've never owned a gun before...

Discussion in 'Self Defense Tactics & Weapons' started by onecoldday, Jul 26, 2006.

  1. onecoldday

    onecoldday New Member

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    I am 21-year old college student residing in Georgia and am interesting in getting a reliable, effective handgun for personal defense. I didn't grow up around guns, no one in my family owns one, so I don't know too much about them other than what I've read.

    Does anyone have recommendations for a first time buyer? As far as caliber goes, I know some of the popular types are 9mm, .40 S&W and .45, and have read up on the debate between them. I think I'm leaning towards .40 S&W, because it appears they have more stopping power, and I'd rather I be able to drop the average assailant in one shot. If I'm not mistaken, 9mms tend to go through the target, right? And I'm worried that a .45 might a be a little unwieldly for my first gun.

    I'm pretty sure I don't want a compact, I don't need to conceal it on my person as I'd have it in my car or apartment. My price range is around $600 dollars. Can I find comparable quality guns outside of the major players like Glock, HK, Colt, and Beretta? I'd appreciate anyone's recommendations.
  2. onecoldday

    onecoldday New Member

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    As an addendum, I should mention that I am particularly interested in semi-automatic handguns, as opposed to revolvers, as evidenced by my mentioning of specific ammunition types. I know that revolvers are quite functional and less likely to jam or suffer a mechanical failure, but there is a definite coolness factor (to me, anyway) attached to a semi-auto handgun.
  3. Marlin T

    Marlin T Active Member

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    Welcome to the fourm, One!!!

    There are others that will be along shortly to help you out!!

    But my opinion would be to hook up with someone that you know and go to the range and shoot whatever you can get your hands on. Maybe your local range has weapons for rent along with your safety classes.

    Would this weapon be for home defence or for carry purposes?

    If the answer is for home, get a shotgun. There will be a lot less colateral damage.
  4. SouthernMoss

    SouthernMoss *Admin Tech Staff*

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  5. Jay

    Jay New Member

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    First get some training.......

    Then handle as many firearms (gun shows, gun shops) as you can

    Of those handguns that you've handled, inquire deeper into the ones that "felt right" in your hands, and see if you can find one that you can shoot.

    AFTER you find a frame style that "feels right" in your hands, you can pursue the caliber issue. I don't care what caliber it is, if the firearm doesn't "feel right" in your hands, you will never shoot it enough to become proficient with it.

    If you're not proficient with it, it does you no good to rely on it for self defense, and caliber no longer matters.
  6. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    Jay nailed it for you. Fit then function. A .45 will kick less than the 40 S&W by the way!
  7. southernshooter

    southernshooter New Member

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    Welcome Onecold
    I'm with Marlin T a shotgun if it will only be at home
    Everthing else I would say stick to the name brand manufactors go to a near pawn or gun shop check out some good used guns hold them see which feels right for you. You said you didn't want compact so try a Beretta 92F or Taurus makes a 92 for a little cheaper
    OHH YEA AND SAFETY CLASSES ARE A GOOD IDEA
  8. satellite66

    satellite66 New Member

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    I agree that you should get training and your choice of firearm depends on what you want it for. I lean toward revolvers for the newbie. They are simple to use and reliable.
  9. Crpdeth

    Crpdeth New Member

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    Welcome to the forums :)

    Keep us updated, we love seeing new peeps get their feet wet!

    Crpdeth
  10. Bernie109

    Bernie109 Former Guest

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    First of all, Take up the sport! Nothing is more dangerous than a person who buys a gun out of fear, tosses it into a drawer, and forgets about it until something goes bump in the night. Take a basic firearms course and practice regualrly or don't buy a gun.

    Start with a .22 cal target pistol. You can rent one at any pistol club.
    When you can place all of your shots onto a 10" paper plate at 15 yards, you are ready to move up to a 9mm or other medium caliber. Once again, all of your shots onto a 10" paper plate at 15 yards is the minimum standard.

    Caliber and style is a personal preference. As a rule, the most powerful caliber you can shoot acurately is what you need to go for.
    Shot placement is more important than power. A .22 in the head is more effective than a .44 mag in the toe. The again, a .44 mag in the head is better than a .22 in the same spot. Rent varios styles and calibers and see which oe suits you the best. 30 rounds in a 10" paper plate at 15 yards is a good place to start. Then go for the same at 25 yards.
  11. Ursus

    Ursus New Member

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    Right on, Bernie.
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