Shopping around, need advice

Discussion in 'Centerfire Pistols & Revolvers' started by 46hand, Feb 12, 2012.

  1. 46hand

    46hand New Member

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    Hi all, thanks for having me here at TFF!

    So-
    I am doing something nice for myself with my tax refund, and I decided long ago that this year I would get a handgun finally.
    I have had my eyes on a Sig P226 .40 for some time, I just like it, and liked firing it. People have told me to check out a 1911, which are definitely a sweet firearm, but I've never fired one. I also understand that they are quite pricy. I am familiar with, and like, the Beretta M9, as that was standard-issue in the Navy... But, for some reason, I find them lacking. Not sure why, exactly.

    I anticipate my refund in a couple days, so I am ready to actively begin my search for a place to buy my first handgun.

    Any advice on where to buy, how much to pay, and whether I am considering the right gun, as well as the pros and cons thereof, would be very much appreciated.
  2. jce07a

    jce07a New Member

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    i personally love the .40 cal. i have a glock 23, its awesome. i would advise anyone who is going to be a first time handgun owner to get a glock. they're durable as all get out. a colleague of mine is ex-SWAT and has carried one for over 20 years on and off duty, has put over 95,000 rounds through his, dropped it out of a helicopter at 650 feet into a parking lot, used and abused it and it still fires like the day he got it.
  3. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    I do not share anyones enthusiasm for a Glock. They do function well unless you limp wrist like a target shooter and they are as ugly as a butt bouquet. They have no safety other than that goofy thing in the trigger which is worthless if a kid should get hold of it. I am a 1911 fan and Desert Eagle has just come out with a 1911 for about $700.00 that is great. My buddy just got one and it shoots as good as any Kimber or Colt I have ever owned. It came with a crisp 4 pound trigger which is more than I can say for a $4,200.00 Wilson I once had.

    Ron
  4. 46hand

    46hand New Member

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    Thanks for the advice, I will add the Glock 23 to the guns I range test on Wednesday. Any advice as to where to get a good price?
  5. 46hand

    46hand New Member

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    The 1911 is also one I plan to range test, I will specify Desert Eagle, and especially for that price tag. Thanks for the advice :D
  6. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

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    P226 are fine weapons , reliable etc i looked at getting one but just too expencive here so i got the EAA witness in .40
  7. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

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    Your choice of a P226 is a good one. My opinion is that you just can't go wrong with a Sig. I also happen to love 1911s. Both the Sig and the 1911 are made of steel, unlike the Block, er I mean Glock.
  8. 46hand

    46hand New Member

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    Thanks for reaffirming my choice in pistols. However, I still don't know the best way for someone who has a great deal of patience to get a good price on one?
  9. norahc

    norahc Active Member

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    Most newer semi-autos will go from $450 - $700. It's going to depend a lot upon brand, model, caliber, and store overhead. Your best bet would be to check some online firearms retailers and see what they are charging for the model you are looking for.
  10. UncleFudd

    UncleFudd Member

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    46Hand

    You asked for help and everyone has ideas and favorites. But I would like to give another suggestion.

    I owned and operated an indoor range for more than 20 years and in that time helped a LOT of people do exactly what you are going to do. I have also bought from or sold for people who spent their money on guns that FELT good at the sales counter or were my "friends/neighbor/brothers/husbands/boyfriend favorite" and found they hated them. I suspect that most on this site have handled guns they immediately did not like and even shot some that gave them the same result.
    It seems that with guns, especially handguns we either love or hate them once we have fired them and there is usually no grey area. A 1911 will feel and shoot great for me but you may not like it once you have handled it under fire. Also remember all the different sizes of frames fro nearly every manuf. What size frame will fit you best and be the most comfortable. Will your purchase eventually become a "carry" gun which will add to the confusion!

    So, first, be careful and second make the caliber and model and size etc choice your OWN, based upon lots of trial and error at a range that has rental guns.

    Get ideas and thoughts from everyone you know including the sales people (who are only interested in the sale) or if you have a local gun store with an owner who has been in business for many years TALK to him and ask your questions. These people will generally be far more honest and helpful in helping you to make wise choice. That is of course compared to big box stores.

    Second, almost all guns from reputable manufacturers are good to go in the end and anyone who tells you a particular manuf or model "never fails", don't shoot much. Any of them can and will under given circumstances, fail.
    But for the most part, as said most will work fine with good ammo and regular cleaning and LEARNING THE PROPER GRIP AND STANCE to make the platform stable.

    Find a range near you that has rental guns and spend some time with the one(s) you think you want at least. Yu will find people at the range (indoor or out) who will be happy to let you they their gun for a few shots if you approach them just as you have here.

    If you are new to handguns, there is MUCH to learn and as with any item you buy, it can be very expensive to learn if you don't do your homework. It can also be extremely disappointing if you buy the wrong gun for you. I have seen the results too many times over the years to ignore it.

    Hope this gives some insight or helps you get your ideal first handgun to enjoy a great experience in the shooting world.
    Welcome and good luck.

    UF
  11. 46hand

    46hand New Member

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    UncleFudd,
    Awesome insight, thanks for taking the time to provide it. I actually went to two local stores today and handled a good variety of weapons. I plan to hit another local one tomorrow afternoon, and then Wednesday I plan to go test some out at the big regional retailer (also a great date!!). Gotta say, I really like the M9A1 style, but I am fairly familiar with it, as it was standard POOW issue in my military days, and all hands were required to qualify, and maintain qualification with that weapon. And one of my shooting buddies already has one! I like the Glock reputation, but the style doesn't appeal to me. Also, the cartridge load/slide forward feature of the M9 isn't there. Additionally, I found that, on a new piece, the slide release is a real bear (though the dealer explained that it is much easier when applying with a loaded cartridge, and demonstrated with his personal that it is also much easier once the gun is broken in a bit).
    I may overlook the absence of that feature on a 1911, because its reputation precedes it, and it has impeccably classic style. I want to see the hammer. I am not too greatly concerned with magazine size, either, and I can spend much less than the Sig 226. Just don't know if I want to go straight for the .45...
    It definitely comes down to shooting a variety, which will be Wednesday's mission- 9, .40, and .45.
    I'll let y'all know what I wind up with, and thanks for the tips!

    Daniel
  12. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

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    Uncle Fudd, your a wise man ...

    cheers
  13. 46hand

    46hand New Member

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    Well folks, $100+ later, I've narrowed it to the Sig 226 9mm or a 1911. I shot the Kimber Classic, and it was a beautiful thing (well grouped, just a little to the right). Same goes for the 226 (landed all center mass, but not very well grouped). I did not like the XMD .40 or 226 .40 (couldn't hit the broad side of a barn with 'em), I liked the Beretta 92A1 (but not interested due to overfamiliarity), the Sig 220 .45 was alright but lacked something... Don't like Glock's style too much, and the way I shot it didn't compensate for that. Am I missing any? Haha tomorrow is the big day!!

    Thanks for all the advice!
  14. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

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    main thing , enjoy!!! ;)
  15. CampingJosh

    CampingJosh Well-Known Member

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    You liked the SIG P226 and the 1911 best, right? You may want to take a quick peek at the CZ 75 or 85 series. All metal (like the P226 and the 1911), controls very similar to the 1911, high capacity (16 rounds in 9mm) magazines, top quality, and less expensive than either the 1911 or the SIG.

    But if you're ready to be done looking and make the purchase, you'll be well served by either the SIG or the 1911.
  16. mad mother

    mad mother Former Guest

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    Hmm
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2012
  17. mad mother

    mad mother Former Guest

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    Why on earth would u want a Sig ? Glock is the best combat auto....period with half the moving parts , 3 internal safeties and hundreds less and better trigger pull. If u drive a bmw or land rover buy a sig but if you're getting a tax refund don't piss away your hard earned money on an inferior gun.
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2012
  18. norahc

    norahc Active Member

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    Some people don't like the feel of Glocks, some have concerns about case support, some want manual safeties, etc.

    There are reasons not to buy Glocks (or any gun for that matter). No one gun is the perfect combat gun, or perfect gun in general. Each make has its benefits and drawbacks.
  19. cpttango30

    cpttango30 Guest

    I would get a glock if they would do away with them stupid finger grooves.

    Plus why would you want to support a man (Gaston) who doesn't think civilians shouldnt own guns. He made his gun for military only.
  20. Big Shrek

    Big Shrek Active Member

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    RIA 1911's aren't pricey...around $350-400.
    or an STI spartan...
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2012
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