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Hello Everyone,
I have never owned nor fired a gun before but am looking into purchasing one. I will be taking a course on gun safety and usage in about a week. Can anyone recommend a good starter handgun? It would be primarily for range shooting and home defense.
 

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Hit up a few local gun shops and get some guns in your hands. Keep in mind what you are wanting a gun for ... my suggestion would be to look at revolvers or polymer handguns, small frame, 9mm :)

Some ranges will even rent guns so you could try out some and get a good idea of what feels good.
 

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Get a good revolver. Doesn't make any difference if it's a 22lr, 22mag or a 38 spl. Learn to shoot it and then think about getting a semi in a year or two. Stay away from small pocket guns your first time out. good luck.
 

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Go to the Florida Gun Center and fondle every gun they have.

This may save some time, take a look at the SA XD9 or the SA XDM9. For range and HD use I'd look at the 3.8 model. It will be a good compromise falling between a full size service pistol and the sub-compact carry gun.

The XDm has better sights and IMHO a much better trigger,

I bet you will find either one to be a great first gun.

Welcome to the FTF. Stop over at the introduction section and say hi.
 

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I would suggest a med. or small frame revolver to start with. I like Rugers they are well made and fairly priced check out the Ruger LCR's and SP101. You should go to a store with several different makes and models to choose from and handle a few. What feels good on one persons hand may not in another. Good luck.

Oh and as far as caliber I would look at .357 mag. You can shoot lower power .38 sp. or full 357 magnum loads out of it. Just my .02.
 

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Ditto on the .357/.38 revolver. Don't rule out Smith & Wesson, especially older, used guns. Have a gunsmith check it out for you.
 

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No home defence handgun holds a candle to a home defence shotgun. A shotgun with normal loads will not kill a family member sleeping in the next room, or a neighbor sleeping in the next house.

Also a gut shot from most pistols will only piss off a drug craised intruder in your home. If you have a handgun, be prepared to shoot the perp many more times than once with a handgun to get them stopped or turned around, or once with a shotgun.

Much harder to miss with a shotgun.

Also the sound of a shotgun shell loading into a pump shotgun is usually all it takes to spin them around running away. No criminal wants cut in half with a shotgun blast.

Handguns are good for CCP, but a shotgun is better for home defence.

Handgun choices? You will also want a handgun. Go Glock and have a simple to use, easy to shoot, dependable firearm.
 

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My first pistol was a Glock 19 (9MM). Easy to maintain and ammo is cheap. Good for the range and for the home front. But.. Its your decision. Go to the local gun shop and look around. Sometimes it'll take a few trips to the LGS to know exactly what you want.
 

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buy a 22

I'd start out w/ a .22 Ruger. Either a MK3 or a revolver. You can do a lot more shooting with a .22lr cost wise than a .9mm or anything else. Practice is more important than anything else when you're first starting out.
For every 50rd box of 9mm's I shoot I shoot 3000+ rds. of .22lr.
 

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Yeah, shoot some at a range that rents and figure out what you like and why, from there we can make more helpful and informed recommendations.

Another suggestion is to go to a local gun store and ask if you can dry fire some guns. Get a feel for different trigger types. I think that is the number one key factor to shooting a gun well.

I cannot shoot double action long triggers. There are some double action, striker fire guns without long triggers too. Like Glock, S&W M&P and Sigma. Also check out the Kahr line of pistols, decent trigger length and consistent pull with clean break.

Also look at the opposite of what I like, the long triggers. Some consider that a better safety and shoot them just fine. Guns line the Ruger LC9. I owned one, it shot well, looks good, feels good in hand, etc.
 

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No home defence handgun holds a candle to a home defence shotgun. A shotgun with normal loads will not kill a family member sleeping in the next room, or a neighbor sleeping in the next house.

Also a gut shot from most pistols will only piss off a drug craised intruder in your home. If you have a handgun, be prepared to shoot the perp many more times than once with a handgun to get them stopped or turned around, or once with a shotgun.

Much harder to miss with a shotgun.

Also the sound of a shotgun shell loading into a pump shotgun is usually all it takes to spin them around running away. No criminal wants cut in half with a shotgun blast.

Handguns are good for CCP, but a shotgun is better for home defence.

Handgun choices? You will also want a handgun. Go Glock and have a simple to use, easy to shoot, dependable firearm.
Hey now the Super Shorty 12 gauge is good for home defense and Conceal Carrying if you don't mind wearing a coat or something like that.
 

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Ruger22lr said:
Hey now the Super Shorty 12 gauge is good for home defense and Conceal Carrying if you don't mind wearing a coat or something like that.
Someone's been watching boondocks saints lol
 

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get somthing easy to maintain. revolvers are simple, as well as glock, bereta, sig, and the XD. easy to take down, and clean.
but more importantly buy somthing you feel comfortable holding, shooting and carrying. i have a sig p226 9mm. i love to shoot it. but its bulky and hard to conceal. find a gun that suits you. there are a ton of great guns out there, and all we can do is suggest. but its you that will have to make the decision. just do some homework and you'll be fine
 

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AR10 said:
No home defence handgun holds a candle to a home defence shotgun. A shotgun with normal loads will not kill a family member sleeping in the next room, or a neighbor sleeping in the next house.

Also a gut shot from most pistols will only piss off a drug craised intruder in your home. If you have a handgun, be prepared to shoot the perp many more times than once with a handgun to get them stopped or turned around, or once with a shotgun.

Much harder to miss with a shotgun.

Also the sound of a shotgun shell loading into a pump shotgun is usually all it takes to spin them around running away. No criminal wants cut in half with a shotgun blast.

Handguns are good for CCP, but a shotgun is better for home defence.

Handgun choices? You will also want a handgun. Go Glock and have a simple to use, easy to shoot, dependable firearm.
I have to disagree with you here for a first time gun user who has never fired a gun and wants home defense now, yes a shotgun would be better though a person with a pistol who is has trained in the use of it can be just as effective if not more than a shotgun. Also what do you mean normal shotgun rounds? If you shoot someone with birdshot there not gonna die and they will fire back I hope you have buck or slugs also I know my slugs will go right through my wall probably easier than my40 loaded with hornady critical defense. Also I do keep a shotgun as well as a pistol loaded and ready to go (just in case the pistol does fail or I don't have time to reload) but even then there's already a round chambered idk a out you but I don't wanna let the bg know which room I'm in what if there's 2 or 3 well armed men they won't be scared of one pump action shotgun if I do use it though the only sound they will here is a safety clicking off. Not saying your wrong just not what I would do.

For the Op since I'm a ruger fan even though nothing is better than looking at all your choices see what fits your hand best while your doing that pick up a ruger sr9 or 40 or their compact versions the 9c or 40c my absolute favorite handguns
 

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To the OP as you can tell you will get many different opinions to the question you asked. It's almost like asking "What kind of car should I buy"? LOL also forums like this while mostly helpful can be filled with opinions that are confusing at best and dangerous at worst.

The most important thing is to get a weapon you are comfortable with and get some training. Then put in some range time sharpen your skills. Good Luck!
 
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