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Need some help, purchasing my first handgun

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Old 09-11-2011, 10:28 PM   #21
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have you considered a 32 caliber?
just my two cents, but say someone breaks into your house. You dont want a round thats too big because that bullet will travel if you miss and maybe hit a family member or something. I wouldnt really be worried about sound that much I would be more worried about if I missed and where that stray bullet is going. I know pretty much any round will go through a wall, but I feel like the 32 is a good size round that packs a decent punch and if need be you can carry it.
Just my two cents.

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Old 09-13-2011, 03:40 AM   #22
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Well, I hadn't really considered anything "rated" below the 9mm in power and it was my impression that .38 Caliber, .380, .32 and such were rather low power (In fact, wasn't the .38 Special a former police round that they found ineffective and hence moved to a new round - I'm no gun historian so I can't say but I do recall reading about their ineffectiveness with .38 Special rounds). Now I know there are great defensive loads for all calibers - but to me a 9mm is about the lowest power round I'd want to go with.

I guess what surprised me on the .40 S&W was the snap - it kicks back quick, not really hard but more so than I expected. It's been a long time since I shot a .45 ACP but I didn't recall it being so snappy with the shots. I'll still need to rent one of those to see how it fares, but I'm thinking if my accuracy issues stem from the caliber that probably 9mm will be the most likely choice. It'll be a bit before I can go to the range again, but I'll update when I can go with my new found findings. I'm certainly not ruling out the .40 S&W - but am thinking a different pistol than the CZ I shot.

The Colt 1911 styles looked rather expensive so it's looking like I won't be able to buy that style pistol - may end up trying something like a Springfield XD in .45 ACP. There's another range locally that is indoor that may perhaps be more conductive to this than the time consuming process of going to the outdoor range and bringing the target and all that entails.
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Old 09-13-2011, 04:57 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Shintsu View Post
Well, I hadn't really considered anything "rated" below the 9mm in power and it was my impression that .38 Caliber, .380, .32 and such were rather low power
Ballistically, 9mm and 38sp are pretty even in terms of performance. 380acp is about the same diameter, but 20% lighter and pretty slow. 32acp is only for micro guns.

9mm is about the easiest and most affordable defense platform to learn on. It is a very adequate defense choice IMO. I always carry either 9mm or 45acp. I'm pretty good with a 45acp. But I'm better and faster with 9mm, so that's what I usually carry.

It sounds to me like you want a 9mm compact (not subcompact), and just don't know it yet. Polymer will give you the most simple, versatile, and reliable (new) gun for your $500 price point. Glock is fine. So are FN, SA XD, S&W M&P, Ruger SR9, Beretta PX4, etc. And I say this as someone who doesn't prefer poly guns.

My advice is to buy a versatile 9mm that can serve you well at home and the range, as well as being just small enough to carry (Glock19, XD9c, SR9c). Also do yourself a favor and look into Bersa. And if you've got the bug, you'll eventually add larger calibers and/or smaller carry-specific guns.
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Old 09-13-2011, 05:49 AM   #24
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another point to consider, size and caliber mean nothing if you can't hit your target. find a type of gun that is comfortable in your hand in a caliber you are comfortable shooting and practice, practice, practice and practice some more.
sometimes flinching is anticepation of recoil. even after almost 40 years of shooting, i sometimes flinch when i shoot larger calibers.
what one person said about the use of a ccw pistol is true, most people will never ever even have a reason to pull out a gun, much less ever even using it. in the even most remote of chances you were ever in a position to need to pull and fire your pistol in a defensive action of yourself or family, your adrenaline will be so high, you will probably never notice the sound of the muzzle blast anyways.
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