Raven Arms .25 vs .38/.357 Advice

Raven Arms .25 vs .38/.357 Advice

This is a discussion on Raven Arms .25 vs .38/.357 Advice within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I have a friend (she is basically new to firearms). She has her CCW and is ready to start carrying concealed. She currently has 2 ...

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Thread: Raven Arms .25 vs .38/.357 Advice

  1. #1
    Member Array John Wesley's Avatar
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    Raven Arms .25 vs .38/.357 Advice

    I have a friend (she is basically new to firearms). She has her CCW and is ready to start carrying concealed.

    She currently has 2 handguns that were given to her. One is a Raven Arms .25 (Model E18 I think.) The other appears to be of another manufacturer (F.I.E. ?) but is the same caliber and looks very much like the first. They each appear to need some work including new springs. She has never fired either of them.

    My advice to her is to sell these two guns and use the money to help her purchase a quality .38 or maybe a .357 small 5-shot revolver like a Ruger Sp101 or something similar. (She seems to prefer the revolver to semi-autos. If fact, she likes my wife's 5-shot Taurus .357)

    I am concerned about the reputation for reliability of these two .25 caliber firearms as well as the effectiveness of the .25 caliber.

    Rather than spend money to get one (or both) of these guns into shape (with reliability still questionable) I think putting the money into a good revolver makes more sense.

    Any comments (agreeing or disagreeing with me) are welcome as I would like your opinion on this. She doesn't have a lot of money and can't afford to make a mistake.

    THANKS!


  2. #2
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    Array bmcgilvray's Avatar
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    Trouble is, she won't get enough money for the pair to keep her in hand cream, much less purchase a decent revolver. They just don't command any respect on the used gun market which is as it should be as the brands are poor quality and the caliber less than marginal.

    Still, your advise to sell them and apply any funds obtained toward a decent handgun is wise. If she's going to have to stuck with one of the .25s until she can obtain a proper gun, the F.I.E is probably slightly better, assuming it can be made to work dependably.
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    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    Reckless...

    Quote Originally Posted by John Wesley View Post
    She has never fired either of them.
    Your statement that she has never fired a gun that she intends to use for defense is remarkable.

    But I agree that a reliable .38 snubby would be vastly superior to a cheap .25 automatic for carry. And she needs to put several hundred practice rounds through it so she knows how it works.
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    Member Array Macantic's Avatar
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    My very first gun i bought about 40 years ago before i knew anything about guns was a raven.25 chrome semi-auto and i still have it.It still shoots good,i don't know how many rounds i put through it. I have replaced the springs a couple of times and the firing pin once.It has been very reliable,but i would not carry it for self defense,i think all you'll do is make somebody really mad if you shoot them with it,although it would be better than nothing until she can get someyhing bigger and better,like maybe a ruger.380
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    Senior Member Array bunker's Avatar
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    This is what my 5 shot taurus 357 snubby looks like. Is this what your wife has also? bunker
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    Distinguished Member Array grouse's Avatar
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    Sounds like she needs some range time.

    Get her to the range & let her try as many different carry guns as you can round up.

    .25acp's cost about as much as .380's & 38 specials and .25's sorley lack the horepower that is needed in a defensive handgun.

    I know it's tough to buy when you have little cash but she really needs to upgrade to at least a.380 & since she likes revolvers
    a .38 special snubby sounds like the ticket.

    Help her look into the used gun market,lot of out there or talk to your local gunshop or handgun range a lot of shops have a lay away plan.

    Good luck!

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    VIP Member Array Richard58's Avatar
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    Get her that revolver like ur wife's....she likes it.

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    Senior Member Array adric22's Avatar
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    If money is an issue, and one of the .25's can be made to work reliably and shoot 100 rounds through without any significant failures, I'd say use it until she can afford something better.
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    Senior Member Array mr surveyor's Avatar
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    have her hang onto the Raven and F.I.E. until the opportunity of one of those silly "buy back" programs rears it's ugly head. That's the only way she'll get anything much for either of them. In the mean time, I agree with the idea of letting her try a few solid handguns (my solid, I mean no feather weights) that she can effectively handle and learn with. I would suggest a good used .38 spl from a known source that can vouch for it's reliability. That way you can avoid the uncertainties of the NIB quality of the "less expensive" models on the market, and save a wad of cash. If money is tight (as with most of us I'd imagine), good quality, serviceable used revolvers can occassionally be had for $200 or so, depending on brand name, and $300 will often pick up a jewell. I'd save the NIB urge for the time I could afford a revolver that itself would be considered a well worn jewell in the distant future.

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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    Let her pick it out. One who has never fired a weapon before does not have any background or experience to draw from.

    I personally do not think a small snub revolver is the best gun for a novice. A Bersa or PPK, two quality firearms at both ends of the price spectrum is what I would " nudge" her towards.
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    Raven Arms and FIE are both low end guns. Neither of them are worth what it will cost to "fix" them, and she probably won't get $50.00 total for both of them.

    If she wants a semi-auto I agree with either a Bersa or if she wants higher capacity a CZ83. For a revolver, the Taurus 85 would work well. I know a lot of people do not like Taurus and they get a bad rap on quality, but the only Taurus I have ever had problems with is their auto loaders. Their revolvers are pretty reliable.
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    VIP Member Array TedBeau's Avatar
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    I agree with the others that said if she likes the OP's wife's revolver than I woudl look into one of these. You might be able to find a gently used revolver in 38 Spl, or .357. Have it checked out by a gunsmith and be good to go. It's a platform the lady has shot, is familar with and likes. Revolvers are pretty reliable so if the cylinder timing and lock up are good, it should be good for years of normal range use. 38 Special, especially in +p is a decent CCW caliber. Granted the 5 shot snubbie lacks a little in capacity, but unless she's in the habit of getting into gangland street fights 5 shots should get he out of about any situation a lady would need to worry about.

    I personally think a revolver makes a lot of sense for someone new to guns, they are easy to master the mechanics of. There is no external safety to remember in a high stress situation, and no worrys about being able to clear a misfeed if you don't have enough strength to rack the slide.

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    Member Array John Wesley's Avatar
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    Thanks ALL!

    I will show her all your posts. I appreciate you all taking the time to help. (Maybe I can get her to subscribe here.)

    I realize that selling both guns won't buy a good revolver but every little bit helps.

    Bunker, as far as I can tell that picture looks just like what my wife has. The exceptions being that hers is stainless and I added a slightly longer (three-fingered) grip.

    Thanks again!

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    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    mr surveyor has the best idea to hold onto those 2 pistols for a police buy back program and get some cash that way which is probably going to be more than they're worth.

    Let her pick a pistol for herself trying many varieties to find her best suited pistol. The Bersa and Walther PPK are good recommendations. I'd go for the Bersa.
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    Senior Member Array Warmon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Wesley View Post
    Any comments (agreeing or disagreeing with me) are welcome as I would like your opinion on this. She doesn't have a lot of money and can't afford to make a mistake.
    I mostly agree, but like others have said, you won't get much more than two boxes of ammo out of them in trade. F.I.E was an importer in Miami, Fl. that brought in guns made in Italy. Not all were junk and definitely a step up from the Raven's, but still not worth much. I definitely think revolver is the best choice for the situation as described. If I was her friend, I would try to steer her towards a Taurus 327. You can start out with 32 S&W Longs and work up to the 32 H&R Mag and then to the 327 Mag for carry ammo. FWIW, the Taurus 327 hold 6 rounds and can be had for $275 or so if you shop around - another plus.
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