Home defense handgun for a woman

This is a discussion on Home defense handgun for a woman within the Home (And Away From Home) Defense Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; A friend of mine is female and in her mid-60's. She purchased a Taurus .380 semi-auto for home defense and she hates it. It's too ...

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Thread: Home defense handgun for a woman

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array KoriBustard's Avatar
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    Home defense handgun for a woman

    A friend of mine is female and in her mid-60's. She purchased a Taurus .380 semi-auto for home defense and she hates it. It's too small for her hand (she's tall with larger hands) and she really dislikes it every time she shoots at the range due to its light weight thus heavy recoil and small grip (short backstrap). She has convinced herself that she'd rather have a revolver. She's asked me for advice but I'm more of a semi-auto guy and suggested to her if she's not going to CCW (even those she's licensed to CCW) that something like a SW .40 would be appropriate. I have a couple of questions: 1) What "bedside stand" semi-auto pistol would you recommend or 2) if she's dead set on a wheel gun (with which I'm not as familiar) would you recommend? Would a .38 be the way for her to go? She's shot a .357 mag at the range and loved it but she's not sure it would be right in a home defense situation. So the question is what action, what caliber, and what model handgun would you suggest? Also, money would not be a major obstacle for her. Thanks!
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    VIP Member Array Brad426's Avatar
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    1. Glock 19, S&W M&P 9
    2. Ruger SP101

    But I'd suggest that she go to the range and try them first... see what she likes.
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    Member Array MrsHB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KoriBustard View Post
    I have a couple of questions: 1) What "bedside stand" semi-auto pistol would you recommend or 2) if she's dead set on a wheel gun (with which I'm not as familiar) would you recommend? Would a .38 be the way for her to go? She's shot a .357 mag at the range and loved it but she's not sure it would be right in a home defense situation. So the question is what action, what caliber, and what model handgun would you suggest?
    For HD only? Forget handguns, get a shotgun. I like a 20-gauge. The only reason to settle for a handgun is if you need to be able to carry it concealed.

    If it simply "must" be a semi-auto handgun, have her try a Glock 17.

    Or, if it "must" be a revo, have her try a S&W 686 or 620 (.357). She can load it with .38s for lower recoil.
    "...people who carry a gun understand that they are arming themselves against a very unlikely event... People who arm themselves are not confused about the odds. They are concerned about the stakes. -Kathy Jackson
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    VIP Member Array aus71383's Avatar
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    My wife has a S&W 327 PD - it's basically a 2" barrel 8 shot .357 Magnum - but it's very light, and she keeps it loaded with 135 grain Gold Dot Short Barrel .38+P ammo. She calls it her "house gun". She also has a Glock 26 that she carries. A long gun would definitely be superior - but she isn't comfortable with them yet. She was a natural with the handguns, but I need to work with her a bit on long guns still.

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    For home defense, a K-frame Smith & Wesson revolver is about as good as it gets. With a 4-inch barrel, a Model 10 or Model 64 is very well balanced, fits a wide range of hand sizes, and even with +P ammo is hardly a handful, recoil-wise. It's tough to wear these guns out, so I'd be looking for cop trade-ins to keep the price low.
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    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    For HD go with a Ruger GP100 or an S&W K Frame.
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    Distinguished Member Array Brady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmitty View Post
    For home defense, a K-frame Smith & Wesson revolver is about as good as it gets. With a 4-inch barrel, a Model 10 or Model 64 is very well balanced, fits a wide range of hand sizes, and even with +P ammo is hardly a handful, recoil-wise. It's tough to wear these guns out, so I'd be looking for cop trade-ins to keep the price low.
    +1 on what gasmitty said.
    And there is a large variety of different grips for K-frames available so that she should be able to find one that fits her hand to her liking.
    ...he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. Luke 22:36
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    Distinguished Member Array dangerranger's Avatar
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    With it being for HD only the longer barrel is not a problem. And if money is not a big problem there are several newer revolvers that are major caliber and up to 8 shot. DR

    Product: Model M&P R8

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    Get a stainless steel k frame size revolver from 2 to 4 inch barrel in a service caliber, keep it simple and practice
    "No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms."*
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    VIP Member Array xXxplosive's Avatar
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    IMO..............any S&W wheel gun she feels comfortable with.

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    Senior Member Array KoriBustard's Avatar
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    I agree that a shotgun is the best option, but she's determined to get a revolver. K-frame 686 seems to be an excellent suggestion. Thanks!
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    There are a lot of PD trade-in full-size .38s out there at a decent price that would do nicely for HD.
    Retired USAF E-8. Remember: You're being watched!
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    Distinguished Member Array Brady's Avatar
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    686 is an L-frame. Bigger, heavier, pricier than a K-frame. L-frame would be great! K-frame will do nicely for much cheaper. K-frame most common models = 10, 64,

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    ... but a search of Bud's and J&G shows they are sold out at the moment. Let the search begin!
    Check gunbroker.com and local gun-shows too.
    ...he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. Luke 22:36
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    VIP Member Array high pockets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brady View Post
    686 is an L-frame. Bigger, heavier, pricier than a K-frame. L-frame would be great! K-frame will do nicely for much cheaper. K-frame most common models = 10, 64,

    ... but a search of Bud's and J&G shows they are sold out at the moment. Let the search begin!
    Check gunbroker.com and local gun-shows too.
    I believe the K frame is .38 SPL, while the L frame is .357, which, of course, can be downloaded to .38 SPL.

    Of course, what do I know, I traded my 686 off for an FNX! Kept the SP101, though!!!
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