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BelRockRebel 11-27-2011 07:47 PM

1st gun for mom of 5 boys, protection &target
Researching 1st gun for myself for home & personal protection, (not conceal in Illinois) Also will do target shooting with my sons. Never shot anything other than shotguns. Hubby travels, protection important, but want to shoot for hobby too. Boys ages 6, 7, 9, 13, 15. Suggestions? 1911 appealing.

CA357 11-27-2011 07:56 PM

First, congratulations for wanting to be able to protect yourself and your family. A 1911 is a great pistol although some will say that it's not a good "first" handgun. See if you can shoot one or several and see how it feels. You can get a good basic 1911 for around $500. more or less.

A four inch .357 revolver is also a good bet. You can shoot .38's for practice and keep it loaded with .357's for defense. Thirty-eight ammunition is also less expensive than .45ACP.

A nine millimeter pistol is also something to consider. Ammo is pretty cheap, it recoils less than a .45 or a .357 and is quite effective for defense with good quality ammunition.

Whichever way you may go, see if you can shoot as many handguns as possible before making a decision.

Do you have a set budget? Can you elaborate a bit on your likes and dislikes? If so, we can better make recommendations.

Oh, and welcome.

Chainfire 11-27-2011 08:19 PM

My suggestion to you would be take a NRA Basic Pistol Class. There are sure to be some in your area. You can search the NRA website to find one near you.

In this class you will learn a great deal about firearm safety, storage, cleaning, ammunition and basic pistol shooting skills. You will probably be able to shoot many different firearms. You will be much better informed on what to buy after such a class. It might save you from buying a firearm that just doesn't fit your requirements.

If you have more than one class available where you live, talk to the instructors before commiting to find one who's philosophy fits your personality. Better yet, ask for references, preferably women, from previous classes.

BelRockRebel 11-27-2011 08:51 PM

Wow. Thanks for replying so fast!

Budget is negotiable. Considering buying two guns so that I can take my boys and/ or my husband to the range with me. Handled my Dads 9mm Glock, did not shoot it, but I did not like all the plastic, felt too light, and when the slide was removed it felt like a toy. I definately would like something a little more substantial than the feel of that. I do plan on going to our range to try different models. Being a newbie I just need a place to start. In my mind, I think I would love a 1911, pretty sure I could handle a .45. I plan on taking up target shooting for fun and will probably go to the range 2x week. .45 ammo cost is not appealing though. I really want to hone my marksmanship skills and to do that I assume I will go through lots of ammo.

So... I want a gun with as little plastic as possible, I want to feel some weight, I NEED to be able to drop someone should they threaten my sons, I want to learn how to shoot well at the range and maybe even compete. I am slightly embarrassed to say I want the gun to look intimidating in a pretty way. Love silver, not black.

Being somewhat obsessive about this, I do plan on learning that gun inside and out. I will know how to DCOA, and I Wool learn about the acceptable ammo.

I will put whatever time, research,and practice I need, in order to become proficient with a gun that might typically be too much for a woman, keeping in mind that my sons will be able to shoot it as well.

BelRockRebel 11-27-2011 08:58 PM


c3shooter 11-27-2011 09:07 PM

Belrock, welcome to the forum. When you get a minute, stop by the intro thread and say howdy. We do have some other ladies that keep us scruffy types in order, and lend a little class to things here. We sometimes get a little goofy, but all in good fun.

A 1911A1 is an excellent handgun- IF you can shoot one. It DOES take a degree of upper body strength to rack the slide to load one. And it DOES take practice to use one in a defensive situation when adrenalin is high.

A well made double action revolver, such as the 357 mentioned above, is accurate, plenty of power, may require less strength to put into action, has slightly cheaper ammo, and is easy to secure (open cylinder, snap a padlock thru the frame). Simplicity of use in an emegency in a strong plus.

For a fun plinker, hard to beat the Ruger .22 pistols. Little recoil, as accurate as you are, cheap ammo. Besides the Mark 1,2, and 3, there is a Ruger 22 that has similar grip angles, etc to a 1911.

As already suggested, DO avail yourself of some good training, try as many guns as you can, take your time picking what you like. Do not overlook a basic .22 rifle- inexpensive, cheap ammo, and those young'uns may like shooting with Mom.

As far as the being in Illinois part, really sorry to hear that. Can we help you find a good Realtor in a free state, and truck rental? :)

c3shooter 11-27-2011 09:13 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Revolvers. Such as Smith & Wesson, Colt, Ruger, Dan Wesson, etc. This is a S&W Mdl 65 .357 Magnum revolver.

Attachment 35524

winds-of-change 11-28-2011 03:04 AM


Originally Posted by BelRockRebel (Post 637310)

Hello, Bel. I am female and new to guns. My first gun was a Ruger GP100 in stainless, 6" barrel. It shoots both .38 and .357 Magnums. In my opinion, a revolver is a good first gun as it is simple to check to see if it's empty. No fear of 'forgetting' there might be one loaded in the chamber when you remove the magazine from a semi-auto. Revolvers almost never, ever jam. Revolvers are easy to clean, no need to ever take them apart. I think revolvers are beautiful and the 'classic' look of a gun.

Tell me this isn't beautiful. :D

You have come to the right place for learning about guns. I have asked uncountable numbers of questions here and have always been answered with patience and knowledge and a variety of opinions and points of view to consider.

I live in Illinois, too. My gun is too big for conceal carry, anyway, but I guarantee you she is an intimidating gun. She's a big 'un!!

winds-of-change 11-28-2011 03:20 AM


Originally Posted by BelRockRebel (Post 637303)
Budget is negotiable. Considering buying two guns so that I can take my boys and/ or my husband to the range with me. I really want to hone my marksmanship skills and to do that I assume I will go through lots of ammo.

Well, if you're considering two, let me throw another suggestion in. My second gun was a .22 semi-auto. VERY fun to shoot, very cheap to shoot, too. You can get lots of practice with a .22 for cheap. A .22 pistol would be a great gun for your boys to shoot, too. Very little recoil and ammo is cheap so everyone could shoot all day long. I dressed mine up a little, too. I have a lot of fun with this one at the range.

My saying is "I have two guns. One is for business, one is for pleasure." :D

sweeper22 11-28-2011 03:23 AM

It sounds like you need two guns:

1) A rimfire target pistol. Ruger 22/45, Ruger MKIII, and Browning Buckmark are best bang for your buck. These will run you $250-500 depending on how decked out you want it. They're excellent target pistols, affordable to shoot, and great for training the youngsters. A good rimfire can quickly transform an $80 trip to the range into a $20 trip.

2) Centerfire home defense pistol. Best bang for your buck options for beginners in various categories might be:
  • 357revolver 4-6": Ruger GP100 ($550)
  • 9mm semiauto: CZ 75b ($550)
  • 1911 45acp: Various guns in the $750 range, maybe Springer Milspec

PS: You should start a boy-band.

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