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So If someone is not relatively good at shooting and doesnt practice alot, but they want to start ccw, would you recommend a pocket .380? They want something small, but Im concerned about shooting a small .380 without enough practice. This person has trouble shooting a full size gun accurately so im assuming a small .380 might be even harder. I was looking at small 9mm as they are alittle bigger and might be easier to shoot. The main reason why the .380 mouse guns are being considered are because of their size as they are concerned about someone in public noticing them carrying. This gun will most likely be carried iwb. What would you recommend for a new shooter who isnt that good at shooting that wants to start ccw? My thought process is to carry something alittle bigger that might be easier to shoot until they decide to start practicing more.
 

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So If someone is not relatively good at shooting and doesnt practice alot, but they want to start ccw, would you recommend a pocket .380? What would you recommend for a new shooter who isnt that good at shooting that wants to start ccw? My thought process is to carry something alittle bigger that might be easier to shoot until they decide to start practicing more.


A 380 will do. I would recommend a lot of practice though.

10 minutes of dry fire practice everyday, and go to the range at least once every 2 weeks and shoot a box or two from 3-7 yards.
 

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No way would I recommend a really light weight mouse gun for a new shooter, and especially this one who doesn't shoot accurately anyway!

The very idea of a person who doesn't shoot accurately carrying any gun at all is more than frightening! This person needs some professional lessons and a "compact" size gun, not a mouse gun. The Glock 19 is a compact size gun. There are many that are that size. The person is most concerned about printing where (s)he needs to be most concerned about LEARNING to shoot properly.

If this sounds harsh, it is fact and sometimes facts sound harsh. Yes, I know that there are thousands of people running around carrying guns who have no idea of actually how to use one, and especially not under stress. That does not make it right or even OK. You have the opportunity of steering this one in the right direction, making sure (s)he learns to shoot well and then picking the right gun for that person.
 

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Bigger is better. A new shooter will do well with a full size or slightly smaller gun. The tiny guys are hard to run even in an experts hands.
Ideally? 2 new guns, one larger defensive pistol...pick your poison, glock 19, sig, S&w, whatever. even the new S&W easy 9mm or 380 work GREAT,

Then, get a larger 22 and shoot the hell out of it (cuz its cheap)
 

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Unfortunately, the easiest guns to conceal are not always the easiest guns to shoot well. The LCP definitely is one such gun.

I would recommend something like a Glock 26 9mm to build confidence in the shooters ability before diving into the tiny mouse guns.
 
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Nothing against the .380 here, but be willing to practice a lot with whatever you choose. Little pocket guns are not the not enjoyable firearms to shoot. It's al personal preference.
 

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Smaller and lighter the gun more felt recoil. For IWB they could look at a Walther PPS, Glock 43, or Shield all of which are 9 mm. Bit more mass and bigger grip to work with. That would be my recommendation.
 
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Consider the Glock 42. Larger than the Ruger but immensely nicer to shoot. Still easy to carry. I have both the G42 and a couple LCPs. Both good choices but any handgun will want for practice in order to be effective and safe in the public arena.
 

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The reality right now is a new gun owner has to see what ammo is available, then hopefully find a concealable gun that uses that ammo.

Yes, in an ideal world you should train, a lot, with your carry gun. We aren’t in an ideal time.

Right now, priority one is getting a gun you will actually carry, and can find ammo for. Practice will come as ammo is found.

Dry firing is a good idea.

I carry a pair of LCPs most days, and have been for over ten years. With practice they are surprisingly accurate.
 

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I'll add to what others have already said. The LCP is great to carry but not fun to shoot. I'd also add without practice mouse guns, like the LCP, can easily be limp risted or suffer from shooter related issues. One option to consider would be a revolver. While not quite as easy to conceal it isn't tough. Your friend should come hear and read the many tips to help prevent printing.
 

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Learn to shoot with a gun that is near full size and in a manageable caliber for the shooter. When the shooter is competent and comfortable with that weapon then start auditioning weapons for a carry gun. There is no substitute for experience.
 

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Have him rent a S&W M&P Shield EZ chambered in .380 ACP and/or 9mm and a Bersa Thunder 380. If those are too much for him to handle, he might be a good candidate for a .22LR. If he can get away with concealing a larger gun, maybe look at a Glock 44 or a Taurus TX22. If not, have him try a Ruger LCP II in .22LR and see how that works for him. Normally I'd recommend a larger caliber/gun, but if he's having trouble shooting a full-size gun chambered in 9mm or .380 ACP, .22LR might be the best option. It's better than nothing, just make sure he has good ammo (e.g. CCI).
 

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I have seen experienced shooters get frustrated with the really small, pocket sized .380's. I would not recommend one for a new shooter. Can you take this person out shooting and let them try out some of your CC firearms? What about showing them how easy it is to carry a larger firearm IWB by showing them what you carry (assuming you carry IWB) ?
 

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I would not hesitate to recommend a 380. However, I would not recommend a pocket gun. Ideally, go to a range and try several. Focus the choices on pistols designed in this century. That lets out the assorted PPK and variants.

Stick with pistols that fire from a locking breech. As much as it feels like a cliche, the Glock 42 is an excellent choice. My Glock 42 just spent more time than I would like completely submerged in fast water a couple of days ago during a kayak failure. Then came the hike out. . . what can I say, I lived. The first place I went was to the Sheriff's Office to tell them that if someone calls it in, don't bother sending Search and Rescue, because I was standing right there. When your immediate thought is, "if anyone from S&R comes out here, they are going to get hurt," it is a big sign that one has messed up, big-time.

The point, the G42 worked fine. I couldn't get past the curiosity, yes, even with the grit and water not entirely removed, it worked fine. Glock is ubiquitous, but for a reason.

I would also recommend looking at the S&W M&P 380 EZ. Its grip safety makes it a very attractive choice for a new carrier. While I have not seen one, Walther has recently released the CCP 380 which, if the "soft-gas" system works as claimed, should go even further to make a more shootable pistol.

I recommend modern pistols that use some sort of locking breech. What you see is that I am not recommending any pocket pistols. Those really need to fit the individual. Thus, the person needs to really understand what he wants and they are not a good first choice.
 

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ShooterGranny has it right. So does 10thmtn. Pocket guns take a lot of practice, and 380 ammo is very expensive if you can even find it right now. Also, the LCP and LCPII can be limp-wristed fairly easily.
Boy, I'd sure go with a different/larger pistol for an inexperienced shooter.
 

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Hey, OP, I hope you're not having an affair with MY wife!! This sure sounds like her!

It seems like just yesterday I was having similar online conversations about how my wife HATES to practice shooting … she hates the noise, she hates the recoil, she hates the ear muffs, etc. What mattered most to her was just having SOMETHING she could throw into her shoulder bag for errands and keep by her bed at night. (Yes, we've been sleeping in separate bedrooms for about 20 years because we sleep better and get more rest that way. There's still romance in our lives after 49 years together, 43 of them married.)

Because I had enjoyed the LCP lineup over the years and LOVED the trigger and slide lock-back on the LCPII, I bought three of them: one for her, one for me and a spare. But a few months ago she demonstrated that she didn't have the hand strength to rack the slide and eject a live round from the chamber. Plus, she looked horribly clumsy loading the magazine and inserting the mag into the mag well and charging the gun.

I gave up on the LCP-for-all concept and swapped one of the LCPs for a S&W 642 with our son. Now, she seems happy with her 'snubby' and that's all I care about. I doubt if she'll ever practice with it, but at least I'm comfortable that she'll be able to have SOMETHING for bad breath self defense. It's loaded with a Hornady Lite hollow point with minimal recoil, but .38 Special hollow points. I actually tested it a couple weeks ago and then cleaned it.

If we're talking about a woman or small man here, you might want to consider some of the .22 caliber options, like the new LCPII-22. I haven't seen one but they are supposed to be identical to the .380 version and yet recoil should be minimal. Tucked away IWB should provide a weapon that is easy to carry and easy to shoot.

Ideally, one should be able to rent any potential handgun and try it out. If that isn't an option, check out the .22s that are available. You'll get a lot of arguments about service calibers being the ONLY gun worth carrying, but I've gotta tell you … I would NOT want to be shot by any gun, .22 or larger.

Good luck.
 

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If someone in this situation came to me absolutely determined to get a small 380, I'd recommend looking at the SIG P238. The extra weight compared to guns like the LCP will make it more controllable and less susceptible to limpwristing, IMO.
 
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