Good first gun?

This is a discussion on Good first gun? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I've shot a gun twice in my life. The local range is less than a mile away and looking for something to take over there. ...

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Thread: Good first gun?

  1. #1
    Ex Member Array targeting's Avatar
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    Good first gun?

    I've shot a gun twice in my life. The local range is less than a mile away and looking for something

    to take over there. I don't plan on hunting, just range shooting. With a range that close by and

    connections on ammo with Hornady in the family, I figure I better take advantage. It's something

    I've always had some interest in, just don't know where to start.

    If I went with either a rifle or handgun first, I'm sure I'd get

    the other down the road.

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  3. #2
    Member Array Dan_the_man's Avatar
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    Well, if you go the handgun route I suggest either a .22lr or a 9mm. A .22 if you want the handgun purely for target shooting and for the reason that it's good to start small and cheap. If you don't see your self purchasing another handgun in the future (yeah right) and you may want to use the handgun for home/self defense hence the forum you're in, I would suggest a 9mm to start. Cheap(er), soft recoiling, and great ammo availability.

    If you go .22, I would suggest a Ruger mkII/markIII, or mark 22/45. These are all essentially the same gun in one variation or another. They are well made, accurate, and relatively inexpensive. If you choose the 9mm, I would suggest either the S&W M&P9 or the Glock 19. These guns are also relatively inexpensive, although more than the .22's but, they are accurate, reliable, and most important for a new shooter is simple to use. There is no safety to fiddle with (read up, they are safe or, you can get the S&W with a manual safety if you choose), there is no decocker or single action/double action to learn. You simply load the weapon and shoot. Great handguns for target or home/self defense for around $500+/- used.

    Dan
    Herknav, Fitch, adric22 and 5 others like this.

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    For a first timer I suggest a pistol chambered in .22long rifle. Or perhaps if you want something bigger a revolver chambered in .38 special would work just fine.
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    And that has made all the difference.

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    Senior Member Array Herknav's Avatar
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    Agree wholeheartedly with the above. Since they focused on handguns (not surprising on a carry forum), I'll talk rifles. If you are going for a rifle, it's hard to beat the Ruger 10/22 in .22 Long Rifle.

    The good thing about a .22 is that you can shoot all day long for not a lot of money. Shooting is the only way to really develop skills. Try out firearms while you're at the range. Pretty soon, you'll think, "That looks cool. I want one of those." And so it begins...

    Best of luck to you, and welcome to DC. Come back often. There's tons of smart folks here....and me, too.

    Cheers,
    Herk
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  6. #5
    VIP Member Array suntzu's Avatar
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    Another good 22lr for target shooting is the Beretta Neos. I have a MarkIII Hunter. My wife has a NEOS.

  7. #6
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    I'm still a fairly new shooter as well and one of my next purchases will probably be what I should have started out with: a double-action .22lr revolver.

    I've found that the hardest thing to master when it comes to accuracy (for me) is "trigger control". "Sight alignment" can be achieved in any number of ways and there are many stances and grips to choose from, but when you've found what works for you the trigger still has to come back in a smooth motion or you'll be off. The easy way to do this is to choose a single-action pistol with a short, light pull but I've started to look at it differently. If I can learn trigger-control with a heavy-pull revolver, it will probably help with any pistol with a lighter pull. .22 is the cheapest way to practice that.

    That said, try as many guns as you can before buying. If your range rents, rent as many different ones as you can. If your friends/family shoot, go with them and try theirs. There will likely be several guns that you will enjoy. Prepare to get hooked and enjoy the journey!

    Caveat- If you're choosing a pistol for self/home-defense, still try as many guns as you can but get *professional* (NRA certified) instruction ASAP. Target-accuracy and "combat"-accuracy are 2 very different things and require very different skill sets.
    I think I should be able to claim my guns as dependents on my taxes. I have to clothe them, feed them, clean them when they get dirty, keep them safe from bad people...

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    For someone starting out shooting it's hard to beat a .22. With pistols you have the choice of a semi auto or a revolver. Ruger has the Mark II in semi auto, or the SP101 in a double action revolver. In a rifle you can chose between a semi auto (Ruger 10/22), bolt action (CZ452) or a lever action (Henry Golden Boy).
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    New Member Array jlis914's Avatar
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    As the fine gentleman said before me, you really can't go wrong with a .22LR, no matter if it's a pistol or rifle. I agree with herknav and archer51 that the Ruger 10/22 is a great rifle to start with. As for pistols, I shoot a Ruger MKIII target (semi-auto), great target pistol. I also used to shoot a H&R 9-shot revolver my father used to have, that was a fun gun to shoot. Wish I could find another.
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    Senior Member Array Lotus222's Avatar
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    I completely agree with what most people have said in this thread. Since you have such little experience, you want to be able to shoot cheaply and get your fundamentals down. The best way to do that is with a .22lr. Get a rifle or get a pistol. Heck, get a cheap $100 rifle and a decent pistol, both chambered in .22lr. Then you can practice everything - cheaply. I promise that it gets pretty expensive to hit the range. You will be able to shoot 100x more with dirt cheap .22 ammo than with anything else. Plus, you will learn the basics and not develop flinches or bad habits as easily (since there is virtually no recoil).

    You will, then, naturally progress to a center fire caliber after you get the itch. I guarantee it.

  11. #10
    Distinguished Member Array Fitch's Avatar
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    I agree with all the recommendations to start with something in .22LR.

    I'd recommend a Walther PT22 which is a nice little .22LR shooting pistol. My Niece bought one and is shooting it a lot. The other really fun gun to shoot is a Ruger Single Six in .22LR. The S&W double action .22 revolvers are fun too, but sort of pricey.

    I'd also recommend an inexpensive bolt action Savage .22 rifle with an inexpensive 4X scope on it.

    You can shoot the same ammo in both guns and learn a lot. There is nothing like time shooting and rounds down range to improve your skills. You can also use either of the above guns if you have to for home defense - they aren't the best for that, but they are better than nothing.

    Fitch
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity"Sigmund Freud

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    sniper rifle???

  13. #12
    Distinguished Member Array Fitch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TX expat View Post
    sniper rifle???
    Seemed like a strange suggestion to me as well.

    Fitch
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity"Sigmund Freud

  14. #13
    Senior Member Array Lotus222's Avatar
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    The sniper rifle link was to an airsoft gun, not a real gun. I was also confused by this.

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lotus222 View Post
    The sniper rifle link was to an airsoft gun, not a real gun. I was also confused by this.
    Ahhh. I missed the link part.

  16. #15
    Distinguished Member Array OhioCatter's Avatar
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    Being new and just starting out I think a 22lr would be a great place for you to start. Cheap, fun, no recoil, and you can shhot almost all day for $20.00. My first handgun was a .45acp which I bought a few weeks ago. Since then I have also purchased a Browning Buckmark Hunter and topped it off with a nice Ultra dot match dot and it is a blast to shoot and lets me work on my form for litttle cost. I think the 22lr is a great starter gun for anyone new to shooting.

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