Is there information around here on sizes?

Is there information around here on sizes?

This is a discussion on Is there information around here on sizes? within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I have very small hands. I held revolvers at the store and none of them felt right in my hands, so I think I want ...

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  1. #1
    Member Array Naturallia's Avatar
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    Is there information around here on sizes?

    I have very small hands. I held revolvers at the store and none of them felt right in my hands, so I think I want a semi-automatic. My husband has a .380 Bersa and a 9mm ? (I forget) and the .380 is huge in my hand yet the 9mm, which is longer and bigger, I'm able to get a better grip on it, but my finger cannot reach the trigger guard and my fingernail rests at the trigger itself.

    At the gun store, the gun that felt the most comfortable in my hands was a 1911, I think that's the name? The salesman told me that the stock/grips can come even smaller on 1911s.

    Should I go ahead and look into buying myself a 1911?

    Or are there other gun models I may want to try to hold first to see if i can get an easier grip on them than the 1911.

    I don't mind if the barrel is long and big, it's just the stock/grip that I need to be able to wrap my hands around. It's also a bonus if the slide's easy to do. I couldn't get the .380 slide to budge and I can get my husband's 9mm slide to open using both hands by pushing on the bottom while pulling on the top. The 1911 at the store, i was able to easily slide it.

    I do have weak hands from carpal tunnel syndrome so i'm unable to squeeze things with a lot of strength, but I have enough strength to hold onto things. Everyone says i should just get a .22 but that defies the point, which is to stop the other person so i can protect my children and myself.

    Thanks for any feedback you may have. There are a lot of gun stores around here, so I'm sure that whatever gun you suggest I go try holding in my hand, that i will be able to find one around here to handle.


  2. #2
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    Check out Cornered Cat

    She is a member here and has a lot of good information, including technoques on racking a slide
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

  3. #3
    Member Array Naturallia's Avatar
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    Thank you. I'll go read up now. :)

  4. #4
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    1911

    I love the 1911 however there are a couple of drawbacks to it compared to other pistols.

    1) the magazine capacity is lower, however if you get one in 9mm you will increase the number of rounds available.

    2) you will need to practice more to ensure that the thumb safety is disengaged as you draw. You do not want it left on.

    It is one of the most comfortable guns to hold as well aim, it almost does it automatically. And yes you can get slim grips for it to make the grip even smaller.

    I would say go for it if you are comfortable handling it and willing to put the time into getting proficient with it.
    Eric

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  5. #5
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    Here's a resource on smaller guns, good for size comparisons:

    Mouseguns.Com New Index,

    specifically the PocketGun Chart by Bob O

    Size is not the only issue, I just posted this a reference on relative size of some common smaller guns.

    As you've noted, it is "more than just size". Good luck.

  6. #6
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    I would suggest looking at the Sig P250, it comes in all major auto calibers, and has 3 frame sizes and interchangeable grips to fit small, med. and large hands. It is a DAO gun, and Sig makes very high quality firearms. The P250 is a polymer framed gun, so the weight is reduced compared to metal frames, making them lighter to carry. With the Sig P250, you can put together the combination that works best for you. (frame size, grip size, and caliber.)
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  7. #7
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    I highly recommend shooting as many as you can before making a decision to buy.

    My wife is small, with very small hands, and she has some CTS. Small guns like Kahrs, the LCP and .38/.357 revolvers felt right to her initially, but after extensive practice she has found herself far more accurate and comfortable with the XD, Glocks, etc.

    We are in the market for an XD for her as a matter of fact.
    "Wise people learn when they can; fools learn when they must." - The Duke of Wellington

  8. #8
    Distinguished Member Array nutz4utwo's Avatar
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    A 1911 is a fine gun. They are accurate, reliable, and an American classic. It is slightly more complicated then some of the other designs in the way the safeties operate and how you disassemble and clean it (with a little effort, it is not so bad to learn).

    Things to think about: Caliber- most 1911 guns fire .45 caliber bullets. They are larger and have more recoil then something like a 9 mm. There are a few places that build 1911's in 9mm like these Kimber's:

    Kimber - Continuing The Legacy

    Walther P99 (and other models)- nice small grip. You can change a piece at the back of the pistol for different hand sizes (the "backstrap")

    Product: P99AS Pistol - 9mm

  9. #9
    Distinguished Member Array kazzaerexys's Avatar
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    If you liked the feel of a 1911, I think that probably means your hands fit best on a thin gun. My g/f is in the same boat, and she is uncomfortable shooting most double-stack guns (ones where the magazine holds its rounds in a zig-zag side-by-side pattern, as opposed to single stack which means one straight column of rounds).

    Just because you need thinner grips doesn't necessarily mean you need lighter loads. Again, my g/f shoots a full sized 1911 in .45 ACP just fine---better than my double-stack 9mm, in fact. A lot of handling recoil is in your grip and stance, not in your arm or upper body strength, so don't let the caliber scrae you away. Make sure you get a chance to try it. Similarly, just about anybody can rack the slide on a big gun with a heavy spring just by working on the technique.

    A 1911 might well work for you. If you want a lighter round, like a 9mm, you will probably still want to try some single-stack weapons for the thin grips. SIG-Sauer makes a P239, which is a small, very thin, fairly compact 9mm. They also used to make a gun called the P225 (also known as the P6) which is bigger than the P239, but still single-stack and with thin grips. And there are a number of 9mm 1911s available, too. The Ruger SR-9, though double-stack, seems to be on the thinner side for such a configuration, from everything I have read.

    I am sure there are other options available; I am just most familiar with SIGs and 1911s. Good luck!
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  10. #10
    VIP Member Array tns0038's Avatar
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    I would recommend visiting a range that will allow you to try out some different pistols.


    While a 45 auto is a wonderful pistol, and you can buy them with all kinds of different grips, if you have week hands, its recoil may be a little too generous for you to hold on to the gun.


    My wife also has small hands, and enjoys shooting the Walther PPKs 380 and a Berretta 22, with her favorite being the 22 Berretta pocket pistol.
    If you’re conferrable shooing a 22, then I don’t see a problem with it for home protection.

    Sure a 22 is no match for a gun fight, but if someone is breaking into your house, and you start shooting rounds at him, the BG is not going to hang around long enough to worry about what caliber pistol you’re shooting.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Array Roadrunner's Avatar
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    Springfield makes a new 1911 called the EMP which is built around the 9mm round. This gives it the slimness you liked in the .45 version with an even shorter grip front-to-back. Or if the full size works for you go for it. I shot with a woman who couldn't have been more than 5' tall who loved the .45 1911 and shot it well. I doubt her hands were much bigger than yours. Another good option is the SIG P239. My mother also has small hands and carpal tunnel and she loves this little gem. You can get a short trigger for it to shorten the distance that your trigger finger has to reach. The P239 is also DEADLY accurate. It makes me look like a better shot than I really am.

    You also mentioned your carpal tunnel makes it difficult to rack the slide. It may seem counter intuitive, but you'll probably have better luck with full size guns than micro-compacts that people are likely to suggest for you. Full size guns don't need super-stiff recoil springs because the inertia of the larger, heavier slide absorbs some of the recoil energy. Micro-compacts must have shorter, stiffer recoil springs to keep the gun from beating itself to pieces. The recoil spring is the one you have to compress to rack the slide, hence larger/longer slide = lighter spring = easier to open. Larger guns also recoil less than smaller guns of the same caliber, again due to greater inertia from the greater weight. There is a tendency (especially for men) to recommend tiny guns to women because they just assume a smaller person needs a smaller gun. Unless you also scale down the caliber, smaller guns are actually much harder to shoot well than larger ones. Don't let a salesman push you into something just because he thinks it's a good "girl's gun".

    If you can rent or borrow guns to shoot at the range that will give you insights you can't gain just by holding them in the store. See if there are any ranges or clubs in your area doing an open house or women's only shoot anytime soon. I will nearly guarantee that if you find a good gun club and ask around most members would be willing to let you try their guns as long as you offer to pay for ammo. Many probably won't even ask for that.

    Good luck!
    - Kurt
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  12. #12
    Member Array Naturallia's Avatar
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    So it's not bad etiquette to ask random people at the range "Hey, can I try your gun?" I always thought that was as bad as asking some other man if I could try his cane or his pipe.

  13. #13
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Naturallia View Post
    So it's not bad etiquette to ask random people at the range "Hey, can I try your gun?" I always thought that was as bad as asking some other man if I could try his cane or his pipe.
    That really depends on the person you ask. Obviously, the guy who's been eyeballing everyone suspiciously and not saying anything is less likely to be receptive than the guy that walked up to you and said hello.
    "Wise people learn when they can; fools learn when they must." - The Duke of Wellington

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Naturallia View Post
    So it's not bad etiquette to ask random people at the range "Hey, can I try your gun?" I always thought that was as bad as asking some other man if I could try his cane or his pipe.
    Actually, it is bad form. If you see someone at the range shooting a gun you might be interested in, here's what you should do.

    Wait for a cease fire, (never interrupt a shooter on a hot range unless it's a safety violation) introduce yourself, and tell him he has a nice gun (compliments never hurt). Be polite and friendly, and ask him if he'd mind answering a few questions about the gun. Don't be afraid to admit you're a beginner. If he wants to talk to you, all well and good, but if he doesn't, don't push it. If he's willing to let you shoot his gun, let him make the offer.

    Many shooters, if approached this way, would be happy to let you shoot their guns, but some wouldn't, unfortunately.


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    And the women come out to cut up what remains,
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    And go to your God like a soldier.

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    Terry

  15. #15
    Senior Member Array Roadrunner's Avatar
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    I guess I should clarify what I meant. I'm a member of a private shooting club. It's not fancy (our range is in the basement of an old church), but the members are friendly. I would feel comfortable asking to shoot their weapons. In fact we had an open house shoot recently where several members made it a point to offer to let "newbies" shoot their guns. I wouldn't just ask random strangers to let me shoot their gun on a public range. I might strike up a conversation and ask to look at it if it were a gun I'm interested in. Captain Crunch has the right idea; if the shooter is willing to let you shoot his or her weapon, they'll make the offer. I'm sorry if I mislead you with my earlier post.
    - Kurt
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