Good pistol for beginners?

Discussion in 'General Handgun Discussion' started by Nosehair26, Oct 4, 2010.

  1. Nosehair26

    Nosehair26 New Member

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    Hello Firearms talk, my father is taking me to the shooting range at the end of October, and I need a few tips on what pistol I should start with. Nothing 45 ACP because I fear that the gun will fly right out of my hands during operation. How about the Beretta PX4 Storm, is it any good?
    Thanks.
     
  2. Jay

    Jay New Member

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    This is strictly my opinion, and has worked in many years of firearms training, and for men and ladies alike. Buy a handgun just like you would buy a pair of shoes. If Ol' Joe over here says he likes Charlie China tennis shoes, and you're looking for a new pair of shoes, do you run out and buy Joe's pick, just because HE likes 'em? Probably not. If a new shooter is asking what to buy for a carry gun, it doesn't matter what works for me, or anyone else. I suggest telling that new shooter to go to many gun shops, and/or gun shows, and handle all the guns they can get hold of. Just like they would try on shoes. Before long they'll be able to make a list of guns that feel ok, pretty good, real good, and "that really feels great in my hands". The last two are the ones to pursue, and here's why I say that....
    If a given handgun doesn't feel "right" in your hands, you'll not shoot it enough to become proficient with it, because it's not comfortable, and you won't like shooting it. Just like you rarely wear shoes that are UNcomfortable. If you're not gonna become proficient with it, save your money, and buy a ball bat to carry. With proper fundamentals, he/she can learn to shoot almost any handgun, or any caliber. Very few folks can re-train their hands to make just any handgun feel comfortable. The last suggestion.........proper shooting techinques, practiced slowly, but proficiently, will breed speed. Do it slowly, and do it the right way, every time.......If you practice speed first, and introduce less efficient techniques into your training, you'll have to do it all over again to get it right.

    By the way..... anyone who introduces a new shooter to our pastime by having them start with a large-caliber handgun, makes a very poor decision. Yes, some folks do ok starting out with large calibers, but the vast majority will not continue to shoot if their very 1st experience is with .50 S&W. Start out with a .22, and work up....

    Again, just my ramblings.... but they work for me...

    Shoot Safely....
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2010

  3. hunter Joe

    hunter Joe New Member

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    Get a big ole heavy 6" barrel .357 revolver and shoot .38 specials out of it or a .22 cal semi auto loader. Both are a good place to start. The revolver will be less complicated and a fine firearm to start out on. I've introduced many new shooters to the sport using a revolver.
     
  4. 007BondJamesBond007

    007BondJamesBond007 New Member

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    Learn on a 22. less recoil and it will teach you the basics. As for 45ACP it is not that bad of a round. Most 45 are heavy and handles recoil great not like my 38spl Airweight.
     
  5. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    I agree with the .22lr as a first beginner handgun.
     
  6. ElvisIsDead

    ElvisIsDead New Member

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    My first answer is that Jay offered the best answer above. Rather than to take up three paragraphs just repeating the same answer I'll say re-read Jay's answer. It is good advice.

    I also like the suggestions given about getting a revolver to learn the ropes. They are very basic, easy to operate and generally pretty solid guns. Some have said start with a .22 others have said a .38 Special. Both are right and both are wrong which means no one person is right or wrong so again refer to Jay's advice.

    A .22 is a great gun to learn on for sure. It is easy to shoot, generally accurate, has very little recoil to startle a new shooter and the ammo is so cheap your fingers will get sore before you run low on ammo money. If you invest in a high quality .22 revolver and take care of it you will pass it down for several generations. The very first gun my son shot was my S&W .22 revolver when he was about 10. He is now a crack shot with about any pistol you can put in his hand. He hunts with his handguns a lot and has fed me quite a bit of his take. All three of my grand children shot that very same .22 as their first handgun when they were about the same age or younger. It is a simple gun to shoot and teaches the basics well. The first thing I taught my son and grand children was safety and also how to clean, care for and properly store the gun. These lessons were taught before they ever handled the gun loaded because I want that same .22 S&W to be around for my grand children to teach their kids to shoot and if properly cared for it will be. A .22 is a great caliber to learn on. The only down side is you will out grow it as a defense gun. If you plan on getting more guns in the future, which 99% of gun owners do even if they say they won't. Get a .22 to start for sure. There will be plenty of time to buy a hand cannon once you have learned gun safety, basic skills and know what to expect when you pull the trigger.

    A .38 Special is also a pretty easy gun to shoot as well and a good one to learn on. If you do decide with a .38 Special I will suggest a .357 Magnum and treat it as a .38 Special for the first six months you own it. The reason I say a .357 is it will shoot .38's and .357's so it is almost like getting two guns in one. As your skill, safety and confidence builds you can move up to shooting .357's out of it. A .38 Special was the gun of choice for several decades of Police Officers all over the world. Ammo is easy to find and won't break the bank. A .38 Special is more than enough power if you ever do need to use your gun to defend yourself and if you get a .357 Magnum that round will stop a bear never mind a gold toothed hood trying to harm you or someone you love.

    I could carry on for pages describing the good qualities of a .22 and a .38-.357 Magnum but I think you get my points. Different shooters require different guns for different situations and different body styles so again I will repeat, take Jay's advice above.

    The most important piece of advice I, or anyone can give you is SAFETY FIRST. There is no such thing as a small gun accident and there is no way to take a bullet back once someone is dead.
     
  7. utf59

    utf59 New Member

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    Nosehair,

    I'm not 100% clear on your question. You didn't actually state in your OP that you are planning to purchase a gun. Are you asking about a gun to purchase, or are you asking which of your father's guns to try first?

    If you're going to purchase, none of us can even pretend to offer advice without any idea of what you want the gun to accomplish, your budget, your size, etc. But the advice given so far is sound — put a bunch in your hand and see which fits. If you're getting started, a .22 is a great beginning. You can learn all the basics with it, it's relatively inexpensive to buy, and ammo is really cheap!

    If your father is bringing guns to the range for you to try, start with a .22 to learn the basics. Then move on to bigger guns as you feel comfortable. BTW, a .45 isn't going to fly out of your grip unless you have really weak hands. I'm not saying you should start with one, but there's no reason to be intimidated.

    And don't think we're all recommending a .22 because you're new or we think you don't know what you're doing. I personally have several .22s, and one of them goes on every trip to the range. The ammo is cheap, and that means I get a lot more trigger time for my budget.
     
  8. Jay

    Jay New Member

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    A tip of the hat to you , sir. Many thanks.

    Gettin' old has it's perks, and experience is one of 'em.... :)
     
  9. canebrake

    canebrake New Member

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    My best piece of advice;

    DO NOT be intimidated with the recoil of a firearm you have yet to shoot!

    nuff said!
     
  10. DrumJunkie

    DrumJunkie New Member

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    THe recoil from a high pressure load like a 9mm or .40S&W is more snappy then the lower pressure 45 ACP. A 45 is more of a push than anything. And unless you are using some really tacticool cat daddy loads made in Dale Gribble's basement you shouldn't have any trouble with it.
    My daughter at 13 years old and weighing as much as a half empty laundry hamper was shooting one with ease.

    But by all means start out smaller if that's your preference. There are tons of quality 9mm's out there. Find one that fits your hand and not something that you think looks cool. It will do wonders for your groups. :)
     
  11. cpttango30

    cpttango30 New Member

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    You should start with a 22lr. The recoil is enough to get you used to controling a pistol, yet not so much that you can't control it.

    I myself don't like shooting 9mm or 40smith I prefer my own loads in my 45acp for plinking. They are soft recoiling and easy on the wrist.

    For me I always start new shooters out on a 22lr. You learn the basics on it and you can shoot all you want for dirt cheap.
     
  12. FreedomFighter69

    FreedomFighter69 New Member

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    A 38 Special or even a 44 Special are both good guns to start with to get accustomed to some recoil. A 22 is too easy ! With a 38 Special and it's bigger brother the 44 Special there is some recoil, but it's pleasant and won't have you trembling after your first shot. Yes the 44 is bigger but it's not the Magnum round. The recoil of a 44 Special is not much different than a 38 Special.
    Even 38 Special + P rounds are easy on the hand and wrist. The 38 will be better however because ammo is cheaper, about 10-15 dollars a box for standard 158 grain round nose or full metal jackets. Shoot with the 158's because all of the defensive ammo that is made is superior in this weight when compared to others like the 125 grain or 110 grn. Also beings the round itself is a slow velocity round in the 700's and 800's {+ P's are in the 900's}, you want a heavier bullet because it will be a better stopper. Why they don't have 38+ P's at 1000 or 1050 FPS yet beats me ? Once you get used to a 38 Special, you can then move up to 9mm, 40 S&W, or 45 ACP. If you feel brave afterwords and think you can handle it a 357 Magnum, 10mm, or even a 44 Magnum may be in the works. Choose wisely ! Good Luck !
     
  13. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    Make sure to tell us where you're getting .38 Special at $10 a box. The best deal I found recently was 13.50 plus shipping.

    I'll agree with Tango that a .22 is a great pistol to learn the fundamentals of handgun shooting...
     
  14. FreedomFighter69

    FreedomFighter69 New Member

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    Reloads and generic Wadcutter ammo can be had for $10.50. I just used a ballpark figure for price. I know all ammo is up these days and I sold my 38's 10 years ago. I personally don't like reloads or wadcutters ! I'd spend the $13.50 for lead round nose however. Better than $18.00 for FMJ 40's {$29.00 for HST} or $21.00 for FMJ 45 ACP {$39.00 for HST} ! I agree with you though it's terrible how expensive ammo and firearms have become. I remember back in 1990, I was getting UMC 38 Special for $8.50, Remington Green box for $10.50, Green box 357's for $ 14.50 ! Ahh, those were the days ! :D
     
  15. ScottA

    ScottA FAA licensed bugsmasher Lifetime Supporter

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    You must have this post permanently embedded in your clipboard. ;)

    Nosehair... If there is one thing pretty much every gunner agrees upon, it's everyone needs a .22. That said, Beretta makes great guns. I haven't found a Beretta that I really like, but that's all do to the way the gun feels in my hands. If you stick with the major manufacturers, you're going to wind up with a great gun in all likelihood. It all depends on how the gun feels to you and what you want the gun to do.

    For myself, I love the way a Springfield feels in my hands. Other people hate em. Glocks make some of the most successful designs in the world... to me, they feel like bricks.

    And no... a .45 will not jump out of your hands.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2010
  16. kdog

    kdog Member

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    I`d go for a standard calibler pistol, like the CZ75 or a Sig P226 in 9mm and an additional .22 caliber conversion kit.

    That will save you money and give you the possabillity to practice with cheap .22`s but keeping your grip and trigger as onb the 9mm.
     
  17. Jay

    Jay New Member

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    Well, it's on a notepad document that I've saved so I can copy and paste it. Most folks agree with it, and as often as the relevant questions continue to arise, I've been answering them with it. I certainly don't want to generate any agitation, I'll just leave it stowed away for a while.
     
  18. ScottA

    ScottA FAA licensed bugsmasher Lifetime Supporter

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    No agitation here, makes perfect sense to me. But I think I'm getting close to quoting it word for word. :)
     
  19. Jay

    Jay New Member

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    Ok, If anyone gets tired of seeing it, I'll retire it........
     
  20. Gojubrian

    Gojubrian New Member

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    Don't do that!!!

    It's a great idea and we should all do it!!

    We'll all have the same quote when we see this thread made by a new poster, then just copy it here, brilliant!!