Looking for suggestions on buying my first semiauto handgun

Discussion in 'Semi-Auto Handguns' started by Thejiro, May 29, 2011.

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  1. Thejiro

    Thejiro New Member

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    I have never owned or really shot guns. I am looking for a good reliable semiauto handgun that I can learn the fundamentals of marksmanship on. I am considering a 22caliber because they are relatively inexpensive as guns go and the ammo is cheap. I was hoping to get some suggestions on what to look into and to help me with my descision.

    Tia
    Ken
     
  2. Recon 173

    Recon 173 New Member

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    There is nothing wrong with starting off with a .22 caliber pistol at all. Ruger makes some good pistols that shoot the .22 LR cartridge and will help you develop your shooting skills. Smith and Wesson also makes some good .22 LR pistols. Either one would work well for you. Go talk to a gun dealer and see what they suggest or check out a local range when they have shooters present to see what they suggest.
     

  3. Tonopah

    Tonopah New Member

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    Ruger

    Ruger 22 pistols are awesome....
     
  4. 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 with a .22 caliber something, and as your technique/accuracy improves, work up from there.

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

    Shoot Safely....
     
  5. mcfroggin

    mcfroggin New Member

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    As your first gun, no sir.
     
  6. Gojubrian

    Gojubrian New Member

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    I would look at the Browning Buckmark (my personal favorite) or the Ruger Mark 2 or 3 pistol.

    If you want a Revolver, get a single six made by riger or a smith&wesson 617. :cool:
     
  7. Olympus

    Olympus New Member

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    Nothing wrong with a .22 as your first like others have said. It's a good caliber to start learning the fundamental with. I own several .22 pistols and frequently take them out to the range for some fundamental training and get myself out of a bad habit. They're cheap to shoot and you can have a lot of fun. Depending on where you live, me and my buddies used to always go out on Sunday afternoons in the country and we'd all bring .22s to shoot. We'd take turns playing HORSE while shooting at dirt clods, sticks, or whatever else. We had a lot of fun and it was cheap.

    Ruger Mark II Target is one of my favorite all around guns to shoot. After I got into the target .22s a little more, I started collecting old High Standards. The old ones are considered by many to be the best target .22 made. The new ones aren't the same though. A lot of people like the Browning Buckmark, Beretta Neos, Walther P22, and Sig Sauer Mosquito as well. Just some other options.

    I used to always drag this little guy out on our friendly .22 shooting competitions until my friends saw that it was a little bit of an unfair advantage! Hahaha!

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2011
  8. Kain

    Kain Member

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    As a farily person fairly new to firearms myself (<2 years) I can say my strong advise is for either a 22lr or 9mm. Both are cheap to shoot and relatively easy to find (Wally-World almost always has both in large quantities) My first gun was a Phoenix Arms HP22. Followed by a Ruger P95. I gave the Phoenix away to a friend of mine and I sold the P95 to a buddy of mine. Both were fine, reliable firearms with almost no issues. I think I shot more ammunition through both of them than the guns themselves were worth. But I didn't feel bad about abusing them because they were "cheap" guns. The Phoenix is now a "purse gun" that will likely never be fired again and the P-95 has had maybe 5k rounds put through it by someone else using it as a "break-in" gun.

    I guess what I'm saying is, don't spend a lot of money on your first gun, spend it on ammunition. Also, popular guns are usually popular for a reason. They tend to fit the needs of the greatest number of people. But it dosen't guarantee it'll be right for YOU.
     
  9. Dennis845

    Dennis845 New Member

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    Two Birds with One Stone

    Just something to ponder, I know you said inexpensive and this isn't, but... If you purchased say, a 1911 style .45 caliber pistol with a .22 cal. conversion kit, you have it all. A cheap shooting .22 cal. handgun you can train with, a CCW gun and a home defense weapon all wrapped in one. If you just want a .22 to pling cans with, the advise from these guys is excellent. Just my nickel's worth. Good shooting.
     
  10. Olympus

    Olympus New Member

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    While good advice, I don't know that I would recommend the .22 conversion kits for a brand new gun owner like the OP. My experience with the conversion kits are that they can be a little finnicky and might scare a new gun owner away, especially if the owner has a very limited knowledge of guns in general or tinkering with them. Granted a I haven't messed with the kits in several years, the new ones might be better than the older ones.
     
  11. group17

    group17 New Member

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    Couldn't agree more. A used Phoenix Arms HP22 was my first 22 pistol and a used Hi point 9mm my first pistol. Learned a lot from shooting them both. Have better now but don't feel I ever wasted my money or experience.
     
  12. Poink88

    Poink88 New Member

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    I think you are on the right track going with 22LR. You can always add another later for other use/purpose.

    There are a lot of new nice looking 22LR but seems like the 2 best are still Browning Buckmark and Ruger Mark series. I bought the Buckmark and have no regrets.

    I am not a fan of conversion kits...my thinking is why have one when you can have 2 dedicated pistols for just a little more. This is just my opinion and not saying conversion kits doesn't have their use.

    Buy the best quality you can afford...NOT the most expensive. Know your intended use and go from there. For example, polymers are great for carry but IMHO is not optimal for range or home defense role. They are being pushed more since they are much cheaper to produce. They do offer great value...just may not be the best for some applications.

    Good luck!
     
  13. Jay

    Jay New Member

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    I've found out in over 60+ years, that if you pay attention, experience is rarely wasted.
     
  14. ScottA

    ScottA FAA licensed bugsmasher Lifetime Supporter

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  15. Tonopah

    Tonopah New Member

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    22lr

    Make sure you get yourself a quality 22LR, like a Ruger pistol or rifle.
     
  16. 007BondJamesBond007

    007BondJamesBond007 New Member

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    I would suggest a Browning Buckmark or Ruger MKII or III. Both are great pistols I just like the feel of the Buckmark.

    [​IMG]
     
  17. dragoon

    dragoon New Member

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    Try going to a shooting range and trying all sorts of handguns, see what feels right.

    Personally I believe you can't go wrong with a CZ75.
     
  18. jarhead315

    jarhead315 New Member

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    'I have shot the ruger mk 111 and it is the most reliable and accurate and safe and inexpensive pistol on the market today. I shot it for over twenty years now and it will hold its own with any of the other twenty two,s out there. In my opinion it is real important to start with a small caliber which is comfortable for you to shoot and get proficient with it, then go up to the big boys like the .45 acp which is inherently accurate. You will definitely have a great time and in the process get real accurate with it.
     
  19. jarhead315

    jarhead315 New Member

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    Jay, I would like to know what outfit you were with in Vietnam. I was there from November 2, 1967 until Feb. 3, 1968 when the Tet Offensive broke out. Was wounded during the fighting in Hue City and was a radioman with Lt. lambert and Captain Christmas who by the way is a three star General now and the a president of the USMC Museum in Quantico.! The Skipper is a great warrior and one to highly respect. In November 67' my baptism of fire and when I became a Veteran was in Operation Essex. Hotel Co. 2/5 operated mainly in the Arizona Territory and we had An Hoa as our Combat base then Phu Bai before we went to Hue City. Welcome Home and SEMPER FI! Brother!
     
  20. cluznar

    cluznar New Member

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    If you want to learn to shoot and also get ready to conceal carry I recommend getting a Bersa Thunder .22 for learning. Then get a Bersa Thunder .380 to carry. These two guns are exactly the same except for the calibers. This way going from one to the other is like just shooting the same gun. They are also not to expensive, but are accurate and dependable. The .380 is a good first carry gun and if you want a large caliber you can get one later. But remember in the new James Bond movie "Skyfall" Bond uses a .380 so it must be a good gun.
     
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