My thoughts after a year and a half of getting my CHL – Need some advice

This is a discussion on My thoughts after a year and a half of getting my CHL – Need some advice within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Warning - Long post. The only gun in my family was my father’s 22-revolver, which was stored in a locked drawer without ammo and was ...

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Thread: My thoughts after a year and a half of getting my CHL – Need some advice

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    Member Array rugerista's Avatar
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    My thoughts after a year and a half of getting my CHL – Need some advice

    Warning - Long post.

    The only gun in my family was my father’s 22-revolver, which was stored in a locked drawer without ammo and was never used. I never got to learn about guns or shooting. For the most part guns were never part of my life.

    Fast forward to my late 30s, there is a gun range on my commute route and one day I decide to check it out. Not the friendliest of places but there were a couple of cool guys that took the time to show me the weapons and teach me about the different carry options. I was bit by the gun bug big time.

    Shortly thereafter I took a beginners course where I was taught the basics and I got to fire my very first gun, a Glock 17. It was fun! This was followed with my first purchase, a used S&W model 64 revolver. The revo was great and led me to get some more training and my CHL.

    This triggered a lot of purchases. I blame gun broker and the internet… if you work and have some money to play… its addicting. ;-)
    Here is my experience so far:

    I made some good purchases (all 100% reliable):

    • Glock 17 and 26
    • S&W model 10, 64, 65 and 442
    • Taurus 65
    • Beretta 22
    • Ruger LCR


    I made some so-so purchases :

    • Taurus PT92 - not sure if I want to keep it. I need to shoot it more (when I find the ammo!)
    • Ruger LCP - good first and then lots of FTEs, even after Ruger service) I bought another one with a Lasermax that I am testing for carry.
    • Ruger LC9 - sights were loose when new, but Ruger sent a new slide quickly and the problem was fixed (100% reliable afterwards). May keep it as an alternative to the 380s.
    • HiPoint 45ACP – (100% reliable so far) and 9 (worthless even after being returned and “fixed” by the maker)
    • 2 Keltecs P3AT (one reliable and one unreliable) and a P11 (I accidentally got this gun stuck during assembly and KelTec fixed it for free and refinished the slide, can you say great service).


    What I carry most of the time:
    • S&W 442 is my favorite (I have small hands and it fits perfectly).
    • LCP or P3AT


    Favorite Holsters
    • Bear Creek Holster front pocket holster for the 442 and LCP.
    • Remora plain IWB for the 442, LCP, LC9 and Glock 26.


    Personal views:

    • I live on a very safe neighborhood and my place of work has armed guards. Overall, my lifestyle is low risk.
    • I like revolvers for carry. The 442 is my favorite (even though it peels some skin at the range after more than 50 rounds). I like its simplicity and reliability. When the 442 is too big for the occasion I carry one of the 380 (P3AT or LCP)
    • For home defense my main weapon is the Glock 17 with a light or one of the larger revos.


    Future Plans - here is where I need your advice (training and purchases). What would you do first?

    Guns
    • Sell the so-so guns (that are not my favorite).
    • Used proceeds to:


    1. Buy a Glock 20 (with conversion barrels for 40 S&W and 357 sig)
    2. Buy a shotgun for home defense
    3. Purchase a collectors gun… per haps a Colt Detective or the like.


    Training

    • Sell the so-so guns

    1. Use proceeds to participate on training (something like Suarez close range gun combat)
    2. Or join IDPA and participate periodically (cheaper than specialized training, so I can probably do more).


    Thoughts so far

    People in the gun community are very friendly. Just don’t mess with them. Tons of advice is given on online forums and there are hundreds of videos online to learn how to dismantle, clean and fix weapons.

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    IMO, training cannot be emphasized enough. Those who are better trained are often (usually) more capable of dealing with situations. If you have the opportunity to sell off stuff you're not impressed with, by all means do that and invest some (or, perhaps all) of that in great training. You won't regret it.

    Suarez, GunSite (AZ), Thunder Ranch ... all good places to start.
    Last edited by ccw9mm; April 18th, 2013 at 07:40 PM.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
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    VIP Member Array GhostMaker's Avatar
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    Any guns that I don't like or shoot are ultimately traded, so I would recommend that personally. The proceeds could be put to several options. Training is always a great investment, so if you can take an intermediate course or such, I would invest in that. The IDPA is a great way of working on your skills and getting advice from experienced shooters and instructors that are there. As far as new purchases I am going to be a little bias here and suggest a Glock 31 with an additional conversion barrel for 40 S&W. I am a HUGE fan of the 357 Sig round after seeing it performance. You can also do the same conversion with a Glock 32 and have a smaller package for concealed carry.
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    dang, you are either single or married to the dream mate. I'd say you've got it covered pretty well. i'd sell the so-so guns for no other reason that if you don't really love them you will not use them and certainly won't have the confidence in them for possible defensive use. 20 gauge shotgun would be a worthy addition to the HD arsenal. tactical training would be fun and certainly would build confidence. shotguns are so cheap you could do both.
    "In the land of the blind, the one eyed man is king."

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    Member Array D_FIN's Avatar
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    If you don't spend some on training you are quickly on your way to just being a collector.
    Depending on where you live you should check out Firearm Training Courses - Handgun ( Glock, etc.), Shotgun, Rifle, (Sub) Machine Gun - from FrontSight.com I just picked up a Diamond Lifetime Membership for a steal.
    UtahConcealedCarry.Com ? View topic - Who wants to go to Front Sight?

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    Senior Member Array Old_Dog's Avatar
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    You seem to have a good handle on things. I have two Ruger LCR's that I favor but lately I am carrying a Sig P938 and XDs in my pocket. If you do not mind a .380 (and I think shot placement trumps caliber) try the Sig P238. It is the finest .380 true pocket gun I have shot. I also recently purchased the Magnum Research Micro Desert Eagle. That gun is so short that the grip sits halfway down my pocket.

    Part of my current profession is facilities security and I would not rely too much on armed guards. I will not say why but consider if you would give up your life for a low salary. The Micro Desert Eagle is great to carry in places where legal to carry but the owners do not want you to. I highly recommend IDPA as most people never get to draw and fire their guns. Shooting well at targets does not prepare you for a gunfight so you need to practice mag changes and moving and taking cover under some stress. Note that with IDPA and other competitive sports, that they are still games and not the real thing. For instance, all targets will be in front of you and you will have time to decide how to run each stage. The order of engagements of the targets are usually based on distance to you rather than which one actually poses the largest threat. If there are two guys closer to you than the guy with the 12 gauge shotgun, you should shoot the guy with the shotgun first. You will not see that in competition though so just remember that you will learn some good skills like quickly clearly a jam, another thing most people cannot do fast. They stare at their guns trying to figure out what is wrong most times. :) Engaging multiple targets is another useful skill and even shooting at moving targets is very useful and something most people cannot do at first and yet expect to hit a moving person during a gun fight. The only thing to keep in mind is that these are all games. If they keep score they are games so that while you will learn a lot of useful things, they may not be tactically sound. Take a good training course and you will learn what you need to know to survive on the streets. IDPA will not teach you how to draw and fire from inside a car or how to engage threats from your sides or behind you. Due to safety concerns IDPA is very limited in what it can do and never forget that. It is fun but not real life.

    As far as getting a Glock 20 and additional barrels goes you may find that by converting your gun with these barrels that it jams. I returned all my barrels because my Glock did not shoot reliably with them. YMMV. Also consider a single stack 9mm or .45. Most civilian encounters are over quickly with few rounds fired. If you need more rounds you are engaged in a running gunfight that you have no business being in or else someone wants to kill you bad enough to hang around long enough to risk being shot himself just to get you. Most bad guys will not risk getting shot to see just how much money you have in you wallet. Twice my attackers ran away by just seeing my gun which is a completely different experience than I had in Vietnam where even a machine gun did not scare them off. :)

    You also make me feel old. A Colt Detective Special was my first carry gun back in 1972. I thought I wanted one to just have and found one a few months ago. However when I held it and tried the trigger it did not compare favorably with current snub nose guns and the finish needed to be redone so I passed on it. Prior to that I bought a Colt SAA and kept it in a display I made. After the novelty wore off I found that I did not want to shoot it because it was in perfect condition and did not want to ruin its value and started thinking that a $1300 gun sitting in a display case is a waste of money so I sold it and bought a fine looking replica for $65 and everyone thinks it is real. :)
    The worst thing about growing old is that other men no longer see you as dangerous.

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    Distinguished Member Array BlueNinjaGo's Avatar
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    No shotguns or rifles? That's surprising!

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    .40
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    I would say if you don't have a 12 gauge shotgun for home defense, you should probably get one given the collection you already have. The ballistics of the 12 gauge defense loads with slug or 00 buck are impressive.

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    A good HD shotgun is worth its weight in 9mm bullets (which are more precious than diamonds apparently) and training, training, training. All the firearms in the world won't do for you what just one good training course will.
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    Wherever you obtain the money, whether from the sale of weapons you don't like/need or from your checkbook...the first thing you need to concentrate on IF you carry for self defense and the defense of your loved ones...is reputable training in defensive pistol, combat pistol, fighing pistol...Then, move on to an intermediate course. IDPA is more for fun than practical training for self defense...Good luck, whatever your decisions....Be safe!

    JMO
    Sometimes in life you have to stand your ground. It's a hard lesson to learn and even most adults don't get it, but in the end only I can be responsible for my life. If faced with any type of adversity, only I can overcome it. Waiting for someone else to take responsibility is a long fruitless wait.

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    Member Array CigarStix's Avatar
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    As a newer shooter and carrier myself, I would definitely go for Training before Guns. Without proper training, what's the point of having the guns? I can highly recommend Suarez training, but you can't take any of their intermediate classes (Close Combat) without first taking their basic defensive pistol class. Good luck!
    ccw9mm likes this.
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    Member Array rugerista's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old_Dog View Post
    The only thing to keep in mind is that these are all games. If they keep score they are games so that while you will learn a lot of useful things, they may not be tactically sound. Take a good training course and you will learn what you need to know to survive on the streets.
    Quote Originally Posted by First Sgt View Post
    reputable training in defensive pistol, combat pistol, fighing pistol...Then, move on to an intermediate course.
    Quote Originally Posted by CigarStix View Post
    As a newer shooter and carrier myself, I would definitely go for Training before Guns. Without proper training, what's the point of having the guns? I can highly recommend Suarez training, but you can't take any of their intermediate classes (Close Combat) without first taking their basic defensive pistol class. Good luck!
    Thank you for the replies. It seems that the general advise is to invest in training.

    Quote Originally Posted by .40 View Post
    I would say if you don't have a 12 gauge shotgun for home defense, you should probably get one given the collection you already have. The ballistics of the 12 gauge defense loads with slug or 00 buck are impressive.
    Quote Originally Posted by TX expat View Post
    A good HD shotgun is worth its weight in 9mm bullets (which are more precious than diamonds apparently) and training, training, training. All the firearms in the world won't do for you what just one good training course will.
    I will keep my eye out for a good deal on a shotgun. I would like to get a used police 870. However, I will focuse my training on defensive pistol for now.

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    Member Array rugerista's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccw9mm View Post
    Suarez, GunSite (AZ), Thunder Range (TX) ... all good places to start.
    ccw - thank you for the advice. I spend a lot of my time in North Texas so I am interested in training opportunities in the area. I did a quick search on Thunder Range in Texas and found these two links. Which one is the right Thunder Range?

    Texas Thunder Range

    Thunder Gun Range - Conroe TX

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rugerista View Post
    ccw - thank you for the advice. I spend a lot of my time in North Texas so I am interested in training opportunities in the area. I did a quick search on Thunder Range in Texas and found these two links. Which one is the right Thunder Range?
    My apologies on the spelling. It's Thunder Ranch, operated by Clint Smith.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

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    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    Training & competency are much, MUCH more important than an assembly of various firearms. Would you rather face a so-so shooter with a GREAT firearm, or a GREAT SHOOTER with a so-so firearm? Don't decide what to do until AFTER you enjoy the tutelage & advice of gin'-uuu-wine professionals. Then come back & tell us all what you've learned!
    ccw9mm likes this.
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