Very First firearm: Questions

Very First firearm: Questions

This is a discussion on Very First firearm: Questions within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hey all! I am very excited to be making my first purchase! But I want to hear some opinions before I do. I have landed ...

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  1. #1
    New Member Array jdhog's Avatar
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    Very First firearm: Questions

    Hey all!

    I am very excited to be making my first purchase! But I want to hear some opinions before I do.
    I have landed on the Sig Sauer P250 "2SUM" .40 since it is a conceal carry and full size combo for a lot less that 2 separate guns.

    1) Is this a good gun? It's a lot cheaper than all of Sig's guns, so I wonder...
    2) Is .40 a good round? I don't want to over penetrate a soft target, but also want to be able to defend myself effectively against big furry
    animals.

    Thanks!


  2. #2
    Member Array Medic218's Avatar
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    1) No experience so I can't offer any insight. Sorry.

    2) .40 is perfectly fine for SD reasons. You shouldn't have any problems with over penetration but as always its good to be cautious and aware of the possibility. Just be sure to use hollow points and not FMJ/ball/target ammo.
    You just need to find a SD round that works well in your gun.
    Look up some hollow point ammo and then do a youtube search to see how they perform. That will at least give you an idea of where to start.
    Personally I like the Winchester Rangers and my partner uses the Winchester PDx1 line of ammo.
    We both carry a .40 as well.
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    New Member Array jdhog's Avatar
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    Thanks MedicMan!
    How about the different grains? I understand that a heaver one will be slower, but the extra mass will exert more force on the target. And the opposite for lighter rounds. How does that factor into my decision making process?

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    Ex Member Array ArmyMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdhog View Post
    Hey all!

    I am very excited to be making my first purchase! But I want to hear some opinions before I do.
    I have landed on the Sig Sauer P250 "2SUM" .40 since it is a conceal carry and full size combo for a lot less that 2 separate guns.

    1) Is this a good gun? It's a lot cheaper than all of Sig's guns, so I wonder...
    2) Is .40 a good round? I don't want to over penetrate a soft target, but also want to be able to defend myself effectively against big furry
    animals.

    Thanks!
    Firstly, welcome to Defensive Carry!

    Second, Sig is a great choice, you have good taste.

    A word on those big furry animals: To take down something large like a bear or mountain lion, penetration is key. Generally a .357 or 44mag slug is what you would want for animals, but those will over penetrate a soft target.

    The majority of .357mag revolvers, and some autos, will also fire .38cal ammo since the bullet is the same size.

    A .40 is a great choice for concealed carry against soft targets, and any firearm is better than non if you get in a pinch with an animal, but I would look for a magnum pistol so that I could change out the ammunition to suit my situation.
    Last edited by ArmyMan; August 18th, 2012 at 07:52 AM.
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    The weight - unless you are on the EXTREME ends of the spectrum for caliber - don't really make that much of a difference, IMO. Pick a commonly available weight from a major, respected manufacturer. Make sure it feeds reliably in your gun, and shoots to point of aim. Then don't worry about it.

    In .40 S&W, anything between 155 and 180 grains should do just fine. Again, the actual differences are so minimal that they will almost certainly never come into play should you actually ever have to use your weapon in self defense.

    As to the P250... I'm sure with a little research you can find plenty of reviews, and learn all the pros and cons. They have had some bugs/issues, and they are generally not considered in the same "class" as the traditional P-series Sigs. That said, if it works for you and you like it, it is certainly a viable option.
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    the majority of 44mag pistols will fire .45cal ammo, since the bullet is the same size for each
    No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Do NOT try this at home. .44 Magnum revolvers will fire .44 Special cartridges, NOT any sort of .45 caliber cartridge. Armyman, please edit that part of your post.
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    New Member Array jdhog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ArmyMan View Post
    Firstly, welcome to Defensive Carry!

    Second, Sig is a great choice, you have good taste.

    A word on thos big furry animals: To take down something large like a bear or mountain lion, penetration is key. At the same time, cartrages which offer high penetration are not what you would want against a soft target. Generally a .357 or 44 magnum slug is what you would want for animals, while a .38cal or .45cal Hydra-Shock hollow points for soft targets.

    The majority of .357mag pistols will also fire .38cal ammo, and the majority of 44mag pistols will fire .45cal ammo, since the bullet is the same size for each.

    A .40 is a great choice for concealed carry against soft targets, and any firearm is better than non if you get in a pinch with an animal, but I would look for a magnum pistol so that I could change out the ammunition to suit my situation.
    Thank you everyone!

    I think the .40 will be good for my first weapon. When I get to the point of getting a second one, I will consider those bigger rounds!
    So hollow points on soft targets, and FMJs on big furry animals?
    Are magnums only revolvers?

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    Quote Originally Posted by OPFOR View Post
    No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Do NOT try this at home. .44 Magnum revolvers will fire .44 Special cartridges, NOT any sort of .45 caliber cartridge. Armyman, please edit that part of your post.
    I ditto the Caution and advice here.
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    Not necessarily JHPs for animals, no. There are specific bullets in the "hunting" calibers for specific hunting purposes, just as there are (many) specific "defensive" bullets in the common defensive calibers. Generally speaking, the Magnum cartridges are used in revolvers, though there are a small number of auto-loading pistols chambered in .357 Mag, .44 Mag, and others.
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    Ex Member Array ArmyMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdhog View Post
    Thank you everyone!

    I think the .40 will be good for my first weapon. When I get to the point of getting a second one, I will consider those bigger rounds!
    So hollow points on soft targets, and FMJs on big furry animals?
    Are magnums only revolvers?
    You might like this:
    Product Review: SIG SAUER P239 in .357 SIG

    For your current .40, please see:
    An opinion on CCW .40cal ammunition: http://www.chuckhawks.com/ammo_by_anonymous.htm

    Typical price for quality .40cal hydra shok: http://www.sgammo.com/product/federa...t-p40hs1g-ammo

    What exactly is hydra-shok: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydra-Shok
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    First, welcome.

    Second,I'll make my standard recommendation here:

    Spend the extra money and get a .22 cal range gun to practice with in addition to your cc gun.

    If you're going to carry safely and not be a danger to yourself or others, you absolutely must become proficient at shooting. That means putting thousands of rounds down range. Shooting till its boring, then shooting some more.

    If you are serious about carrying, serious about safety, and serious about being able to use your gun when you will most need it, you will need this experience.

    The cost of .40 cal ammo will be prohibitive to doing this, so I highly recommend getting a cheap .22 plinker that you can just shoot and shoot and shoot. .22 cal ammo is about 10x cheaper than everything else. The money you will save will MORE than pay for the extra gun.

    In addition to cost savings, the lack of recoil from a .22 will prevent you from developing a flinch. If you're new to shooting and you start off with a .40 cal, you may have issues with that.

    Buy your .22, go to the range once a week with it and your .40. Shoot a 500 count box of .22 rounds and a 50 count box of .40. Do this for a couple months. You won't regret it.
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    Member Array RAC55's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum!
    IMO...you can't go wrong with a Sig. I have a 20+ year old P230 that I carried for several years. It's a little nicked and scarred, but it still shoots as good as the day I bought it. As for the .40 S&W, I think it's a good round as I carry a Glock in .40. If you are a little worried about over penetration in an urban area, you could try loading it with Glaser safety slugs sold by Cor-bon. They are very pricey, but they expend their energy extremely fast. As far as large furries, you would have to go with a heavier bullet that will hold together under penetration. I also agree with getting a good .22 pistol that has similar ergonomics to your carry pistol and practice, practice, practice....and have fun doing it!

  13. #13
    VIP Member Array Hiram25's Avatar
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    Welcome from Delaware! I use .40 everyday.
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    One of the reasons the P250 is a bit cheaper than most Sigs is that it has a polymer frame instead of aluminum.
    You shouldn't overlook a 9mm. 9mm has lower cost, lower recoil and is in my opinion usually more shoot-able for someone new to handguns. The .40 does have more "power", but it also has more felt recoil. I shoot both calibers and I feel perfectly comfortable when I carry either caliber. Shot placement is more important than caliber, especially with handgun rounds. It is bullet construction that plays the most important role in what kind of penetration you're going to get. A bullet can be made to upset quickly and minimize penetration or to not deform at all and achieve maximum penetration. For self defense, most premium JHP rounds in a service caliber are going to penetrate 10-16" of ballistics gelatin.

    Your choice of ammunition is important. I recommend staying away from specialty fragmenting rounds ("Safety Slugs", "Extreme Shock", etc...) because they're ridiculously over priced and may not have adequate penetration to reach vital organs. When you consider barriers between you and your attacker or the angle the bullet would have to travel through your attacker's body to reach vitals, it doesn't make sense to use something that only offers minimal penetration.

    I also recommend avoiding older, obsolete bullet designs, Hydra-shok being one of them. Non-bonded Golden Sabers and Winchester SXT (forerunner of Ranger-Ts) are rounds you should pass on too. I'm not saying they won't work, but newer designs have improved reliability of expansion and weight retention.

    I highly recommend Federal HSTs, Speer Gold Dots and Winchester Ranger-Ts. Anything on this list is worthy of carrying. Best Choices for Self Defense Ammo I prefer Federal HST 180gr for my M&P .40. If you can, buy your self defense ammo in 50rd LE packaging. It's usually identical to the ammo in 20rd civilian packaging (if normally offered to civilians) but nearly half the price. 50rd - 40 HST 180 grain Federal hollow point ammo P40HST1 | SGAmmo.com
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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OPFOR View Post
    No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Do NOT try this at home. .44 Magnum revolvers will fire .44 Special cartridges, NOT any sort of .45 caliber cartridge. Armyman, please edit that part of your post.
    the 44 magnum/special bullet diameter is .430 the 45 bullet diameter is .452 there is no way a 45 bullet is going into a 44 chamber unless you beat it in with a hammer
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