Looking to purchase my first handgun.
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Old 06-26-2010, 11:47 PM   #1
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Default Looking to purchase my first handgun.

I've recently become interested in acquiring a handgun and I've got a few questions about where good deals can be had. I've read that people have found guns at pawn shops for as little as $20 before and I'm telling you folks, that's right around my price range. A friend told me that if I have an idea of what mode, brand, etc. that I'm wanting I should just save up and get what I'm really after. I have experience with firing guns, but have little experience with cleaning and maintaining them, so any suggestion on what I should look for in my first time purchase would be appreciated as well.

Thanks, and I look forward to hearing from anyone on this matter.

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Old 06-27-2010, 12:25 AM   #2
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Thank you for your post.
Before I give my two cents, please go to the introductions section and tell us a little about yourself.
First of all, I would be VERY suspicious about a $20 gun.
If you want a good, reliable gun, you will pay at least $300 for a new gun, maybe slightly less for a used one.
Are you looking for a semi-automatic, or a revolver? Any particular caliber?
We want to help you decide what's right for you but, we need to know a rough idea of what you're looking for.

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Old 06-27-2010, 12:52 AM   #3
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I'm definitely going to be looking for quality in a fire arm, after all it could possibly save my life one day. I'd just been doing some google searches and came across another forums site where a member had claimed to have purchased $20 and $40 guns and that he'd had them for several years, having no trouble with them.
When it comes to preference, I've fired both revolvers and semi-auto pistols, but haven't had prolonged use with either. I've fired weapons of friends such as a .38 special and my brother's jennings .22 semi-auto (which jammed constantly) and as far as rifles go I've shot some .22's and an ak.. I've always liked the classic look of revolvers but recently saw a Colt 1911 and thought it looked pretty impressive. I've read for concealed carry, that I should look for a pistol I can easily operate with either hand, fits good in my hand, and I can fire accurately. I live in a smaller town, the closest gun shop is a few towns over, and I've heard they're pricey over there. I know I'll want to fire it before I purchase it. Revolver is more my style I think though. Sorry if I rambled. Thanks for reply and look forward to more.

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Old 06-27-2010, 02:16 AM   #4
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Entry level for most higher quality handguns is typically near $300. Pawn shops can be great sources, so long as you know your way around the piece in question. If you like shooting and want to actively shoot your gun, plan on spending $400+. If you learn a bit about the guns and forecast your own needs, it's easy enough to whittle it down.

Figure out what you want first:

1) Revolver/Semi-auto
2) Steel/Polymer
3) Full frame/Compact
4) Caliber choice (9mm, 40sw, 45acp, & 357mag are far and away the most practical options)

This is just my opinion, but I feel pretty strongly about it: among the four options listed above, there are no wrong answers! Personally, I think 9mm is the ideal launching point for first time owner/shooter. It's a an adequate defense round and reasonably cheap to practice with. Others could make a great case for 357m/38sp. 40sw and 45acp will also work just fine for some. So figure out what you want, and invest enough time (and money) that you end up with a gun worth keeping.

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Old 06-27-2010, 03:11 AM   #5
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What about buying from swap meets and such? Is that illegal or what?

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Old 06-27-2010, 03:23 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old_sweetpea View Post
What about buying from swap meets and such? Is that illegal or what?
no, but it is definately buyer beware. guns bought like that can be stolen, used in a crime, or broken. the first two can be confiscated by law enforcement the last can cost more repairing than the thing is worth new. when i buy at gunshows or pawn shops or from private sale i never spend money i can afford to lose if something isnt a square deal. for someone not familiar with firearms i recommend new purchase. its just a lot safer if its a first gun, especially if there isnt a lot of discretionary money. sometimes its better to save a little longer and avoid the risks till more experience is gained

just my two primers worth
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Old 06-27-2010, 03:29 AM   #7
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$20 guns.. LMAO. I smell a troll... BUT, if you are serious then get serious. I wouldn't buy a shotgun for $20. Read up on all the posts here. There are very knowledgable people on here. No matter what gun you choose, quality is important. Look to spend 300 or more for a handgun my friend...

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Old 06-27-2010, 03:40 AM   #8
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Quality and overall satisfaction with my purchase is what I'm after. I don't want to end up spending the money and going home with a gun I'm not completely happy with. I know that I want a grip that doesn't feel small in my hands for sure, the .38 special of my friend's just felt small and I didn't feel comfortable with it.

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Old 06-27-2010, 03:47 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Old_sweetpea View Post
Quality and overall satisfaction with my purchase is what I'm after. I don't want to end up spending the money and going home with a gun I'm not completely happy with. I know that I want a grip that doesn't feel small in my hands for sure, the .38 special of my friend's just felt small and I didn't feel comfortable with it.
Just because your friend's .38 spcl felt small to you does not mean all .38s will. As far as someone claiming they have found great guns for 20 or 40 bucks, then I bet you can as well.

This smacks of TROLL all the way around. Good luck with your search, and you can bet the best info you can find is on the interwebz.
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Old 06-27-2010, 03:51 AM   #10
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Go to a gun store that has a rental range. Don't know if they have those in Indiana, but it will give you the opportunity to fire several handguns and determine which fits you best.

Then save your money and buy a new weapon or a used handgun from a reputable shop.

You will spend all of $300, perhaps more. By all means, get some formal weapons training if you're this unfamiliar with handguns before you hurt yourself or someone else.

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