Help Narrowing Down Selection - Beginner Compact Striker Dual Action?

Discussion in 'Semi-Auto Handguns' started by consultant, Jan 27, 2014.

  1. consultant

    consultant New Member

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    Considering purchase of first handgun. Been doing research. Usage will be 90% range shooting, 10% conceal and carry. Primary objective is (a) accuracy/easy to shoot (b) safety (c) reliability. I have no bias to certain manufacturers as I see many do from other threads I've read.

    The #1 on my list to try is Walther PPQ - appears to have nicer trigger pull and ergonomics than Glock but some say a little more recoil - seems like no big deal in a 9mm? Excellent reliability.

    #2 Glock 19 Gen 4 - duh

    #3 Caracal CP661 - Yes, I know these are from UAE and the previous gen was recalled, but if they got it right on the 2nd gen, this could be the best shooter out there. Great trigger like the Walther but I believe this has the lowest centerline out there as a reputation for being a very easy/accurate shooter. Still many shun this newer non-Euro or non-US manufacturer which was wise initially hence the recall. I heard they are being manufactured in Germany I think now. I guess it might still be a dice roll but a beautiful gun that would be unique at the range.

    Honorable Mention

    S&W M&P - Low on the list due to the not so good trigger pull (from reading multiple reviews) compared to the Walther. Still a good gun.

    XDM - I'll try it, but on paper and in reviews, it doesn't seem to stack up well with the Glock or the Walther.

    Here's an issue though on safety. Being a beginner, I'm a bit apprehensive carrying a striker fired gun with a very light trigger pull. The chances I would ever have to use the gun, statistically, are extremely slim (I don't frequent environments where safety issues are probably.) So I suppose I could carry without it being cocked. Yes, I know, it could be the difference between shooting the guy lunging at me with the name versus getting stabbed in the time it takes me to pull the slide back. That's a risk I'm willing to take as I firmly believe, for me, and my life situation, the type of situation I would be in to pull my gun would involve using the threat of it as a deterrent and pulling the slide back puts an exclamation on that threat. I'm not a cop, a drug dealer, or have meth labs on my street. I think more common would be a home defense situation in which case if I heard someone I'd have time to cock the gone. If they sneaked in without waking me, I couldn't do anything anyway. I sort of laugh when considering these situations. I'm really buying this gun for "sport" and maybe to pack with me while hiking by myself. I live in one of the least dangerous areas of the least dangerous cities in the U.S.


    So, this leaves a Dual Action pistol. At the range I can cock it and use it as single action. When carrying I can let the first pull be dual action.

    But does anyone carry a dual action pistol where the single action trigger pull is on par with the Walther or Caracal or will a single action pull on a dual action gun not even come close?
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2014
  2. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    Get to a range that rents guns and try a few.
    You perception of a heavy trigger pull could be different than mine, and the way the gun fits your hand will also be different.

    In other words, what works for me may not work for you.
     

  3. Doc3402

    Doc3402 New Member

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    You are about to become a collector of firearms, you just don't know it yet. Every firearm you buy will be a compromise. You'll really like one thing about it, but another gun will have something else you really like. My best advice to you is in agreement with danf_fl. Go to a range and rent.

    As to the Walther, I am not a big fan of the magazine release. In the back of my mind I can see me snapping it off at the worst possible time. It's probably an unrealistic thought, but it's there just the same. My daughter has a Walther .22 with that release. She loves everything about that gun.
     
  4. HOSSFLY

    HOSSFLY New Member

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    Of those you mentioned ---Glock them M&P (no other S&W simi need apply)
     
  5. Werminator

    Werminator Member

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    Perhaps also take a look at the SR9 from Ruger. Mine has been absolutely wonderful and reliable. They have a manual safety that some consider unnecessary but if I were to carry it would be with one in the pipe and I feel the added safety would be a piece of mind. I was fortunate enough to put 3 rounds in a dime sized group at about 11 yards with it last fall which put my mind at ease in terms of accuracy...

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Firearms Talk mobile app
     
  6. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    Stay far far far far far far away from the caracel its a total pos.

    The ones you list the xdm is the best of the lot. Best trigger out of all of em plus a grip safety making it the only one in your list that actually has a safety. A dongle on a trigger isn't a safety. The xdm won't go off unless your hand is gripping it in a firing method. The others are routinely set off off by foreign objects and carelessness. Look up "glock leg"

    The xdm 3.8 compacts are superbly accurate ultra reliable and work with full size or shorty mags for ccw. Kinda fits exactly what your looking for. I own a 3.8 and 4.5 in 45acp the wife has a 4.5 in 9mm just fantastic guns.
     
  7. CardiacColt68

    CardiacColt68 New Member

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    I own a Walther PPQ and it is an excellent firearm. And so far I have not heard of any owners with complaints. BUT, any double stack handgun may be hard to CC depending on your carry method. If you need something smaller a PPS is really handy. Try to shoot and/or fondle as many handguns as you can. Comfort and fit is critical for good shooting. Good luck.
     
  8. DrFootball

    DrFootball disappointed & disgusted, But DETERMINED... Lifetime Supporter

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    Walther is a great gun from the feel of the ones I handled@ SHOT this month. I'm also quite Found of my Ruger SR9, you may want the 9C if weight and a +4" barrel is an issue. Have also been found of 92 Patterns', and the new 3series SIGS look like they are Gonna be "the Shyt"
    I will make no comments on the "G" word....
     
  9. Mouser

    Mouser Member

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    shield is the one for you...don't pay too much attention to other people's reviews...try yourself. I have smiths, glock and xdm and the smith has the best stock trigger for me...operative concept 'for me'.
     
  10. HOSSFLY

    HOSSFLY New Member

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    Now theres something you don't hear everyday :D
     
  11. ScottA

    ScottA FAA licensed bugsmasher Lifetime Supporter

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    Choosing a handgun is very individualistic. Any of the major manufacturers are worth putting your hands on and trying: Smith & Wesson, Ruger, Walther, Springfield, Sig, Block... er, I mean Glock.

    So, so much of it is about how it feels to you. The feel of the grip, the angle of the grip, the pull of the trigger, the trigger reset, the position of the safety (or not), the position of the mag release, the pull of the slide. There are so many things that you can never appreciate from a review.

    Something you will find out soon, a gun that is great for carrying is not often a great gun on the range. The smaller the form factor and weight, the less comfortable the gun becomes to shoot. The most uncomfortable gun I have to shoot is my little 380. It disappears in my pocket and is perfect for carrying, but it will tear you up on the range if you are not wearing gloves.

    For myself, my everyday carry guns are:
    #1 - Kahr PM9: 9mm, lightweight, very smooth but long trigger, one of the smallest 9's you can get so it fits well in my pocket.
    #2 - S&W Bodyguard 380: very small & lightweight, long heavy trigger, disappears in my pocket.

    What I like shooting at the range:
    My Ruger SR1911: It's big. It's heavy. It's loud. It's accurate. And I can shoot that all day long. It's also my bedside gun.
    My S&W Model 17 .22 revolver: 22's are the ultimate range guns. They are very inexpensive to shoot and shoot a lot. The model 17 is rather large for a 22 which means it absorbs any perceived recoil.
    My Ruger SR9c: This is probably the gun that I have that really crosses over between a good carry choice and a good range gun. Ruger did a good job of managing all the compromises with this pistol.

    Check out the videos in this thread:
    http://www.firearmstalk.com/forums/f14/choosing-handgun-mike-seeklander-58208/
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2014
  12. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

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    Sounds like you want a 'just compact enough to conceal' gun in an otherwise near full/duty/combat size format. Sort of a jack of all trades pistol. And you seem to prefer polymer and 9mm. That criteria is perfectly reasonable and there will be a ton of fine options.

    My advice is that you investigate all medium compacts that are right around the size of a G19. And if you're going to occasionally carry, that's probably about the right size. Handling and capacity near a full-size, but compact enough to conveniently conceal.

    These companies offer fine options, depending on your fit and tastes:

    Springfield
    Glock
    FN
    S&W
    Sig
    CZ
    HK
    Walther
    Ruger
    Beretta

    I really prefer the Springfield XDm and S&W M&P. The PPQ also gets good reviews but I have no experience with it. HK is rock solid but expensive. Glock is perfectly fine but I don't love the ergos and resulting sight picture (although I have two). Ruger's SR9c is a really slim and affordable option, without sacrificing capacity or quality. CZ's P-07 is a solid little gun. FN I like, but not as much as Spingfield or M&P. Sig's SP2022 is solid and affordable, but the trigger on their P250 sucks in my opinion. Beretta's PX4 is similar to their M9/92...a good gun, but overbuilt and oversized for my tastes.

    And everything in ^^^that last paragraph^^^ boild down to personal tastes. I would trust any of those guns, it simply boils down to finding what works for you. For me, XDm and M&P are tough to beat. Pistols are very much about your specific demands and fit.
     
  13. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

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    Another great 'do-it-all' option is a G23, with 357sig and 40-9 (9mm) conversion barrels. This allows you to shoot three calibers. 9mm is adequate for defense and an affordable range choice. 40sw is relatively affordable at the range and a good carry/defense round. 357sig is less affordable, but a nice woods carry round. And you can get that whole package for like $750.

    I have a G23 set up in exactly this manner. It generally wears the 357sig barrel, as it's primarily a truck and woods gun.
     
  14. Werminator

    Werminator Member

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    Its a interesting option that sweeper gives you to allow you to shoot several calibers from the same gun. Personally I think I would look for 2 different guns if I was spending nearly 800 bucks to allow myself dedicated weapons but it certainly illustrates options!

    Sent from my SCH-I545 using Firearms Talk mobile app
     
  15. hardluk1

    hardluk1 Active Member

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    Drag your butt to a range with rental guns. Many time you rent one gun in a cartridge and can shoot the others if not in use. This way you make up your own mind. Oh M&P's triggers are better than you think with some shooting and if better is still needed a simple apex firing pin block tends to take care of that issue .
     
  16. jjones45

    jjones45 New Member

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    My personal new favorite right now is my ppq m2. Then I would pick up my m&p, then ruger sr, and glock last. I own all these and that's my personal preference. Yours may differ. All are excellent firearms and would serve you well. I have no experience with caracal, but they do interest me. With the last recall I probably would give the gen2 some time to mature but that's just me.


    Sent from my iPhone using Firearms Talk
     
  17. CardiacColt68

    CardiacColt68 New Member

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    I LOOOOVE my PPQ M2. But it's a little big for my to carry IWB.
     
  18. DrFootball

    DrFootball disappointed & disgusted, But DETERMINED... Lifetime Supporter

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    As far as too Big for CC,..Today we had a short momentary "scare." Some of you may remember that We almost had a "Push In" here the Friday BF X-mas...well, when I saw a Darkly Clothed Person pass my Kitchen window(clearly on my Property!) I came out the Front Door with a Flannel Shirt Jacket, one of my Heavier Walking sticks, and my .38 in the right Pocket(stick in Left hand). After Standing outside a few moments, I saw the Culprit!! a Man from the Electric Co. putting signs on folks' Door Knobs Regarding changing out the Meters...,as he worked his way down the block on the other side I mentioned to him that He might wanna knock before walking across people's front yards... He said "well Don't Shoot me Please"...I was trying to figure out how he knew I had a Gun on me then I remembered my two signs on my front porch(Trespassers will be shot! & The Dog eats what we shoot..)
     
  19. CardiacColt68

    CardiacColt68 New Member

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    If he was planning to install one of those 'smart' meters he may need some shooting!