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Old 01-19-2013, 05:55 PM
86 posts, read 137,227 times
Reputation: 65


I guess in some ways you could say I am "jumping on the band wagon" and looking to buy a gun. I know very little about guns. I have been to the shooting range a hand ful of times with various friends in my life. So I am no stranger to the recoil, or magnitude of a gun. And I have entertained the idea of buying a gun numerous times, but due to the uncertainty of future laws. I believe I am going to actually follow through with it this time.

I read in other threads that to answer my question adequately giving you some specifics would help.

1. I am buying a gun that my wife and I can both handle.
2. I want a gun with stopping power.
3. I am not looking to be Dirty Harry, just protected citizen.
4. I am 6ft, 255lbs, and my wife is 5'5 ???lbs.
5. I do currently live in an apartment and I do have a 5 year old daughter (Gun is being bought with a lock box, and possibly trigger lock)
6. My wife and I are planning to take a pistol safety class in the next two weeks. Before I purchase the gun.
7. If I can afford it I am also joining a shooting rainge here in Missouri to allow my wife and I to get better trained on the gun.
8. I do not want a shotgun, I want a pistol
9. I also would like to know what is the top 3-5 best brands to buy under $800

Thank you in advance for your opinions.
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Old 01-19-2013, 06:37 PM
Location: Port St Lucie Florida
1,263 posts, read 2,899,270 times
Reputation: 376
colt, sig, ruger,springfield armory, Rock Island, SW M&P
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Old 01-19-2013, 06:42 PM
Location: Tyler, TX
15,194 posts, read 17,692,612 times
Reputation: 7980
Everyone will have their own suggestions. Mine, based on your criteria, is to get a Glock in either .40 or 9mm. If you plan to carry it, the model 27 would be a great choice. Coincidentally, I just happen to own one.

Glocks are rock-solid reliable, will fire pretty much any ammo you feed it without failures or jams, and the lack of a safety switch could save your life in a bad situation - you can't forget to switch it to 'fire' under stress. They're also incredibly easy to strip for cleaning and maintenance.

Like I said, everyone will have their own suggestions. I own quite a few pistols. The Glock is the one I've had the longest, although it wasn't my first. I like all of them for various reasons, but if I had to choose just one, it would be the G27, hands down. I'd even take it over the S&W M&P Shield, which is a pretty hot model right now.

Good luck picking out something you like. I'm also glad that you'll be taking a safety class. Check your local ranges, too. Most/a lot of them rent guns, and you could try several to see what you like best. Keep in mind, though, that range guns tend to not be maintained very well, which can affect their performance. If there's one you like but it kept jamming on you, find out through other sources if it's common for that model before you rule it out. Odds are, it's not.
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Old 01-19-2013, 06:45 PM
594 posts, read 1,142,884 times
Reputation: 387
You can get a great gun for under 800.

Smithnwesson, Berretta, Ruger, Sig, Taurus in 9mm or 40cal practice with FMJs and keep hollow points or hydra shocks loaded for home protection. Ballistics determine knock down power.

Good luck.
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Old 01-19-2013, 06:48 PM
Location: Gilbert, AZ
164 posts, read 707,705 times
Reputation: 197
I'm partial to Glocks myself...... I'm thinking a Glock 19 would be the right size. Not too small for you and not too big for your wife.

I'd recommend renting one at a local range if that's an option so you know you're both comfortable with the feel. Nothing worse than a pistol that doesn't feel *right*.....
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Old 01-19-2013, 08:40 PM
Location: SWUS
5,414 posts, read 7,629,795 times
Reputation: 5781
The newer Glocks come with interchangeable "backstraps" (parts of the grip) that can be switched to make the grip and grip angle more comfortable for the user. I'm hardly a Glock fanboy but as far as reliability, ease of use, and level of maintenance go, they're bulletproof.

I do have one thing to say, though, and it's that I think a lockbox AND a trigger guard are sort of redundant. Pick one or the other- you're buying a defensive weapon, and if you waste precious time in a bad situation trying to unlock something you might just end up having a worse day. Keep in mind that an unloaded firearm (with home/self defense in mind) is useless... there are some pretty neat little safes that are very safe for relatively low cost.

If you decide to not go with Glocks, Smith and Wesson makes nice pistols (M&P series, you can get it in 9mm, .40SW, .45ACP, compact, full size, etc.), Heckler and Koch, FN (They make the FN FNX, FNP, etc.) I would also recommend that you and your wife take a weekend and take a defensive pistol course of some sort, or at least take some time to become familiar with your handgun at a shooting range.

At this time your only disadvantage is getting into the game so late. You can still buy guns but prices will be inflated and finding ammunition is near impossible, even for those who know where to look for the best prices.
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Old 01-19-2013, 08:44 PM
Location: Maryland
1,667 posts, read 8,154,207 times
Reputation: 1593
My gun is a .45 Colt but, it is a lot of gun. My wife is very comfortable with her 9mm Beretta 92. I paid $625, but now they're about $150 more. Still in your range. Before you keep a loaded gun in the house, train your child to never touch and, being your first pistol, never pull in on someone unless you're going to touch the trigger immediately. Otherwise, you'll loose custody of it and that is bad. You live in an apartment I see. If you shoot indoors, the bullet will go through the wall and keep on going, whether you hit your target or not. Be super careful!
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Old 01-19-2013, 08:49 PM
Location: living in OKLA. heart in Alaska
237 posts, read 346,396 times
Reputation: 213
stopping power 40 or 45 go to a range and rent some find one that fits you. then buy it
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Old 01-19-2013, 09:30 PM
86 posts, read 137,227 times
Reputation: 65
Thanks for all the replys and I hope more come. You have given me somethings to think about.
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Old 01-20-2013, 07:13 AM
Location: Phoenix AZ
5,920 posts, read 10,448,009 times
Reputation: 9226
If youre careful with your money, you might be able to find an older stainless S&W .38 revolver, 1,000 rounds of ammo, and some shooting time at the local range for under $800, even with the recent hysteria. If you've each sent a few hundred rounds downrange, you'll be more accurate shooters.

Then you can pick up a box of zombie loads in +p and do a respectable job of protecting yourself. There's a reason the .38 was the standard carry weapon for about 100 years - half a dozen well-placed shots from a weapon you can afford to practice with is worth more than 12 shots from a safe-queen you cant afford to shoot. Check ammo prices before you buy anything.

Revolvers dont jam, they dont have mags that can be inserted the wrong way in a stressful situation, and they dont have safeties you have to remember to click off. If you pull the trigger, you get a bang every time.
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