March 18th, 2010 08:00 AM
When I got started, I used a metal hand held tool box (w/ pad lock) as my handgun lockbox. I had several of them already, so nothing to go buy...just consolidated some tools in one box. When I outgrew the tool box and bought a large gun safe, I converted the tool box into my gun cleaning box.
Gun safes are kind of like when you build a garage. Whatever size you think you need, add a little more to it.
Find a gun range that rents guns and go shoot some. That's the best way to decide.
I wouldn't buy a holster until you buy a gun...holsters aren't one fits all.
Purchasing a handgun should be a purpose-driven purchase. List your needs and then find something that fits your hand and those needs. If you carry a semi-auto, are you comfortable carrying chambered? Do you want a safety? One with an external hammer or internal striker? W/ hammer, do you want a decocker SA/DA pistol so you can carry chambered and uncocked but with DA ability (fire without cocking). Are you more comfortable with a revolver? List out pros and cons, needs and wants and find something that best fits your needs.
Will this be your all-purpose handgun (CC, home defense, car, etc.)? If so, you need something compact with decent capacity and decent SD caliber (my XD40sc fits that bill for me). Do you need light and compact for a dedicated CC gun (my 442 or PT709 fit that bill for me)? There are endless possibilities. I've built my collection based on purpose-driven decisions. Some of them I just liked.
Know Guns, Know Safety, Know Peace.
No Guns, No Safety, No Peace.
Guns are like sex and air...its no big deal until YOU can't get any.
March 18th, 2010 08:19 AM
Get a good belt designed and manufactured for carry. People will tell you that a 20 dollar belt from Walmart will work just fine but it's simply not true.
March 18th, 2010 08:32 AM
Own yes, carry, no.
Originally Posted by Joey Diesel
My first firearm was strictly home defense. I bought a S&W model 65 with a 4" barrel. Revolver, simple. It's a great gun, but too big to carry.
Don't rush buying the gun just to have something. You'll know when it's right.
And, you know, carrying isn't for everyone. There's nothing wrong with getting your permit just to take a stand on your rights.
Since that first gun, I've acquired several more. Currently my favorite?
A Sig P-238.
Safes are good for more than guns too. Get the largest you can afford, you'll never regret it.
March 18th, 2010 08:34 AM
You didn't mention the kids' ages, so a "secure" gun lock (not the cheap, easily removed trigger locks) is called for at a minimum. A safe is obviously rmore secure, but costlier.
It sounds like this is your first firearm (?). In that case, a revolver is probably a good choice--simple, reliable. A .357 magnum is a good caliber to start with. You can shoot .38 Specials for training (a pretty effective rounds in itself) and will get you used to shooting a firearm. Once you're comfortable with them, you can step up to the magnums for self defense.
I'd had handguns for years prior to getting my permit, so it was no big deal to me. It sounds like you have a problem on "pulling the trigger" on making the purchase. Find a range where you can rent a handgun and run through a couple of boxes. You may find that a handgun isn't for you and won't have "buyer's regret" by buying something you felt in your heart you didn't want.
Retired USAF E-8. Lighten up and enjoy life because:
Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid...
"For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield
March 18th, 2010 10:06 AM
I'm not trying to start anything, but I don't understand why people get a CCW permit before they get a gun. What is the thinking behind this? I would think that people would want to be familiar and proficient with their firearm before they carry it, and (at least for me) one or two trips to the range doesn't cut it. I'm not flameing anyone who does it that way, to me it just seems like putting the cart before the horse.
Either you are a weapon and your gun is a tool or your gun is a weapon and you are the tool.
March 18th, 2010 10:16 AM
The first thing I did when I got my permit was a happy dance.
To answer one of the OPs questions, yes I still own my first firearm. It is an XD40c. I don't carry it all that much anymore, as I got a XD9sc awhile ago that conceals better.
March 18th, 2010 10:19 AM
Let me save you a lot of time and money.
Definately get a good safe for storage of your firearm.
Definately teach your family gun safety and get them out there shooting with you, they may need to defend themselves someday. I like to show them what a fast moving bullet can do to large pieces of fruit.
A .38 special/.357 mag revolver is a damn good idea. Reliable and proven they are great starter pistols that will serve you well for many years maybe even generations. Unfortunately it seems that even .38 spl ammo is getting hard to find.
If you are interested in semi-auto pistols just get a GLOCK 19, a large majority of people will agree it is the best all around pistol. Buy as much practice (range/ball/Winchester White Box/Federal Champion/Remington UMC) ammo as you can and PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE! Also be on the look out for self defense ammo, Remington Golden Sabre, Speer Gold Dot, Federal Hydra-shok, etc. Pick one and make sure to run a few magazines trough your gun to make sure it works flawlessly, don't wait to field test for when your life depends on it.
Order a Crossbreed Supertuck holster and belt from Crossbreed holsters. Yes, the belt is very important.
Good luck and may the whole pain and expense of geeting your concealed permit end up being a waste of time and money.
NRA Life Member
With great power comes great responsibility.-Stan Lee
March 18th, 2010 10:24 AM
You are NOT a loser!
Each of us will go about our self-defense in different ways. The BIG key here is that you are on the right track. You are exercising your 2A rights and letting your congress people know you support the 2nd Ammendment by getting your permit.
Quick advice for you.
1. DEFINITELY purchase a handgun safe. For our first safe, we bought a Center of Mass travel safe, actually a different brand bought at Cabelas, and we keep it between the mattress and boxspring. Low price and keeps it away from the kids and prying/inquisitive eyes. If you have money, there are a lot of great safes out there.
Also, educate your kids on proper gun safety. Corneredcat.com has some GREAT advice on how to do educate your kids and take away the "cool gun" factor.
2. If you are unsure of what gun to buy due to safety and comfort, I suggest either a DAO revolver or a Springfield XD. The XD has a grip safety like the 1911, and a trigger safety like the Glock. I LOVE mine.
3. If you are unsure of what gun to buy because you just like so many of them, I suggest you get the lowest price QUALITY gun you can, meaning no Hi-Point or JA! The Khar CW9 or CW40, the S&W sigma, a couple of Taurus models and there are other choices as well that all come in at $400 or Less. The lowest price means you start carrying immediately and can purchase your NEXT gun sooner!
4. Buy a Crossbreed, Kholster, or similar Tuckable IWB holster, carried where comfortable. [For fantastic and easy concealment] You can always buy more holsters later, but the Crossbreed and similar others ship quickly so you can carry sooner. And get a good gun belt. Yes, the belt is VERY important. I have one from Crossbreed and love it. I have one from a local leather shop and love it. The Beltman gets rave reviews also.
5. Learn how to safely and effectively use your particular weapon. Take lessons if need be at your local range.
Good luck and Welcome to the CCW crowd!
"When seconds count, the police are only minutes away." * "Don't bring a knife to a gun fight."
March 18th, 2010 10:29 AM
Not a source of good advice here, as I was given my first gun at 6-7 yoa and my first hand-gun before I was a teenager.
However, be assured many, if not most, of us have a box, or a draw, of holster we never used much -- as we learned what works for us, personally.
And, although, I still have the two .22s (single shot rifle and later the revolver) my grandfather gave me some 60+/- year ago, I've bought, sold, traded, swapped, etc quite a few guns over the years. Although, I have had the same EDC for a couple years now, its the latest in a long line and I may change again.
OIOW, don't sweat it too much. You don't need to get it right the first time.
But welcome aboard. And
Last edited by DaveH; March 18th, 2010 at 12:15 PM.
Reason: typo & defined the .22s
I'm just one root in a grassroots organization. No one should assume that I speak for the VCDL.
I am neither an attorney-at-law nor I do play one on television or on the internet. No one should assumes my opinion is legal advice.
Veni, Vidi, Velcro
March 18th, 2010 10:30 AM
i'm not going to read this entire thread so i am probably repeating better than half the posts here...
its a little scary to think that you dont even own a gun yet but youre planning to strap one to your side and use it to defend yourself...
March 18th, 2010 10:40 AM
Congrats on getting your permit. My first handgun was a S&W model 60 that I bought back in 1995. I had just become a NYS Correction Officer and I needed something to carry off-duty. While in the prison we did not carry, but on transports we carried S&W model 10's. So I wanted something of similar function.
Originally Posted by Joey Diesel
Then in 1997 I got on the job with NYPD and was issued a Glock 19. But I was not allowed to carry my 60 off-duty because of the external hammer, so I had to buy a 640.
But these days I rarely carry my little j frames as a primary. I mostly carry my Glocks as with the right holster they are very comfortable and I have more ammo available.
So to answer your question, no, I do not carry my first firearm. But I will never sell her.
Police Defensive Tactics, Firearms, Carbine Rifle and Taser Instructor
NRA Life Member
It is better to have your gun and not need it, than to need it and not have it!
You cannot choose the conditions for a gunfight, so train in all conditions!
March 18th, 2010 10:52 AM
All the advice here is right on and very helpful. I am so thankful for this forum because these folks are so helpful. But plain and simple......welcome to the world of trial and error of finding the "right" gun fit for YOU.
Always put Jesus first in your life.
NRA (Lifetime Member)
U.S. Navy Vet.
March 18th, 2010 11:06 AM
Congrats on getting your permit. I just got mine in Wake County in Jan and then purchased a gun safe for home and truck, XD9sc, MTAC & SmartCarry holster and I am really enjoying it. Look forward to seeing what you decide on!
March 18th, 2010 11:11 AM
Yes Joey, OldVet is right. And I can also add that trigger locks, due to their through-the-trigger-guard designs, MUST NEVER BE USED ON A LOADED GUN, as they can (and do) fire the weapon "accidentally" by pulling the trigger back as you are removing the lock itself. They are a no-go.
Originally Posted by OldVet
This is the most critical, since you will be carrying a deadly weapon in public, and are legally, morally, and financially responsible for each and every bullet fired. So train not only for weapon familiarity and accuracy, but also for safety.
Originally Posted by bladenbullet
And I should also add that while there are a few good books on concealed carry out there, you really must read one of them from cover to cover.
Probably "The Gun Digest Book Of Concealed Carry" By Ayoob (Amazon.com: The Gun Digest Book Of Concealed Carry (9780896896116): Massad Ayoob: Books) is the best one for the beginner.
March 18th, 2010 11:22 AM
Droopy gave good advise. I would humbly add a Ruger SP101 2 1/4" to his list of revolvers. :) Perhaps not as beautiful as a S&W, but Less expensive and just as well made. You can find them for under $500.
Keep it secret, keep it safe and practice, practice, practice!
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