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Old 10-09-2013, 03:51 AM   #1
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Hello all,

My name is Tyler. I am a junior in college, and will be turning 21 in December. I am starting to research which handgun I will be purchasing soon after my birthday.

Please note, I am not new to shooting. I have shot sporting clay competitively since I was 14. I have also passed a few handgun safety courses, and have spent time at the range. Unfortunately, it was always with a rented gun, or when I've gone with a buddy. So, I am unsure as to where to start on finding the right handgun for me.

I intend to get very very familiar with the handgun before I begin applying for CCW permits, but I do plan on concealed carrying eventually, so this is a factor in my decision.

Any other advice on where to start for a beginner? I am honestly starting fresh, even though I do have some experience. Thank you all for your help. I appreciate it.

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Old 10-09-2013, 04:55 AM   #2
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Hello all,

My name is Tyler. I am a junior in college, and will be turning 21 in December. I am starting to research which handgun I will be purchasing soon after my birthday.

Please note, I am not new to shooting. I have shot sporting clay competitively since I was 14. I have also passed a few handgun safety courses, and have spent time at the range. Unfortunately, it was always with a rented gun, or when I've gone with a buddy. So, I am unsure as to where to start on finding the right handgun for me.

I intend to get very very familiar with the handgun before I begin applying for CCW permits, but I do plan on concealed carrying eventually, so this is a factor in my decision.

Any other advice on where to start for a beginner? I am honestly starting fresh, even though I do have some experience. Thank you all for your help. I appreciate it.
best suggestion, start hitting the gun stores and pawn shops and trying some out until you find one that fits your hand the best.
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Old 10-09-2013, 07:05 AM   #3
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Glock 19 gen 3 or 4 great starter,range and self d...cant go wrong

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Old 10-09-2013, 08:03 AM   #4
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Don't get something so big its not easy and convenient to carry. compact or subcompact, you might not mind a full size but a smaller gun that's on you is better than a larger gun left at home. Pocket carry is probably the easiest way to conceal but it does limit your options. You may not want something that looks like a brick on your hip. a good holster is key, iwb works pretty well for me but I carry owb.

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Old 10-09-2013, 08:49 AM   #5
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I always suggest a good quality revolver for first time hand gunners. In your case, even with your prior long gun experience, that doesn't change. I would suggest either a S&W or a Ruger.

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Old 10-09-2013, 12:54 PM   #6
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Get a nice revolver with a 4" in 38 or 357. It will be a gun you can keep forever and it's a good one to start with. Welcome to the forum and good luck.

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Old 10-09-2013, 05:02 PM   #7
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I always suggest a good quality revolver for first time hand gunners. In your case, even with your prior long gun experience, that doesn't change. I would suggest either a S&W or a Ruger.
^^^This^^^ is great advice. If I had it to do all over again, I'd have started with a SA/DA wheelgun.

Very simple to operate and maintain...

If you can get proficient at shooting in DA, the transition to a semi-auto will be much easier...

Rugers are high quality, S+W, Colt ($$$) are great, as well as several other manufacturers...

Carrying concealed is admittedly easier with a semi-auto but lots of folks carry revolvers (me included) with no problems...

If I were to recommend a specific caliber, it would be something chambered in .357. That will allow you to shoot .38 at first, then work your way up to .357...

Keep in mind, you can shoot .38's through a .357 but you can't shoot .357's through a .38...
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Old 10-09-2013, 09:26 PM   #8
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^^^This^^^ is great advice. If I had it to do all over again, I'd have started with a SA/DA wheelgun. Very simple to operate and maintain... If you can get proficient at shooting in DA, the transition to a semi-auto will be much easier... Rugers are high quality, S+W, Colt ($$$) are great, as well as several other manufacturers... Carrying concealed is admittedly easier with a semi-auto but lots of folks carry revolvers (me included) with no problems... If I were to recommend a specific caliber, it would be something chambered in .357. That will allow you to shoot .38 at first, then work your way up to .357... Keep in mind, you can shoot .38's through a .357 but you can't shoot .357's through a .38...
Same. If I could do it again, I would get the revolver first. Find one that is comfortable to hold and aim. Your hand size will affect what guns you'll like. I personally dont hold large grip or glocks very well. There's nothing wrong with those guns, but they dont work for me. You need to find out what works for you and what you're willing to spend. More money is more options. Decide on a caliber and use for the gun. Trust me, the more research you put into your purchase, the happier you will be with it.
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Old 10-09-2013, 09:44 PM   #9
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Good advice in this thread! "Try on" as many different pistols as you can to find one that is comfortable and not so large as to be impossible to conceal.

I do love my Ruger GP-100 revolver and would think it would make a great first handgun. The .38's are soft-shooting for target work, and the .357mags provide a bit more kick when desired or needed.

I have also found the Bersa pistols to be a great "bang for the buck". I enjoyed the Bersa Thunder 380 I owned, and it would be great for concealed carry (not big) if you like the .380acp round. My Bersa Thunder 9UCP has a bit more punch but is bigger and not as good looking as the smaller Bersa.

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Old 10-09-2013, 10:36 PM   #10
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i have to agree as well that a revolver is a good pistol to learn and hone your skills on. the 357 Mag. would be a good choice as you can shoot the lower powered 38 Spl. loads for practice, and many times they are much cheaper to shoot as well. as your skill level goes up, then move to higher powered Magnum loads.

a good revolver, like a S7W or Ruger will serve you well for many, many years. even a good revolver in a 22lr or 22 Mag. would be a good option to try out.

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