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Zombie Hunter
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Discussion Starter #1
My beautiful and amazing Stepdaughter will be moving to an area where there is reasonable concern about safety. We plan on taking her to a range where she can try a few handguns to see what she is comfortable with for CCW. I'm leaning towards the LCR or something simalar. Can I get some input from LEOs on what they would recomend?
 

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I'm not LEO but I have owned an LCR in .38. VERY bad recoil. I would not recommend for a new shooter. S&W 442 or the like is better especially if you take $25 and 15 minutes and install the Apex j-frame kit. If you don't, I doubt she'll be able to hit anything with it and get frustrated.
Second, keep in mind that LEO doesn't equate with firearm knowledge. A lot of them never touch anything but their duty weapon. Good luck !!
 

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I'm not LEO but I have owned an LCR in .38. VERY bad recoil. I would not recommend for a new shooter. S&W 442 or the like is better especially if you take $25 and 15 minutes and install the Apex j-frame kit. If you don't, I doubt she'll be able to hit anything with it and get frustrated.
Second, keep in mind that LEO doesn't equate with firearm knowledge. A lot of them never touch anything but their duty weapon. Good luck !!
X2 on the bad recoil. Rent/shoot as many different handguns as you can get your hands on. A heavier revolver like a SP101 would be easier to shoot.
 

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Zombie Hunter
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Discussion Starter #4
X2 on the bad recoil. Rent/shot as many different handguns as you can get your hands on. A heavier revolver like a SP101 would be easier to shoot.
Thanks guys. Yeah, the plan is to go to a LGS and have her try a few different weapons. The criteria is that she finds something she is comfortable with so she will take it to the range and practice practice practice.
 

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Republican!!!
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Former LEO here. As the others have said, spend some serious range time with her and let her shoot several different styles, brands and types of hand guns. She's got to be comfortable with it, or it's a waste of money. As for what I personally recommend to people (after someone here recommended it to me) is the Sig P238. The .380 has become a potent round rivalilng 9mm with the advancements they've made the past few years. The P238 is extremely easy to rack (two fingers) and just as easy to shoot. It's a 1911 style pistol so you get the great trigger that 1911's are famous for and also the quick, easy and reliable thumb safety. It's very small so people with small, and/or weak hands can handle it easily. At the same time, I find it very easy to shoot with my large hands.

I would definitely advise you to try and get/rent/borrow a P238 to let her try. And maintenance on it is a snap. I'd say even easier than a revolver. Lastly, it's a Sig! Sig Sauer makes great firearms and the P238 is no exception.

 

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WGolf

I've been retired for about 6 years now, but for a new shooter I'd recommend a revolver. No slide to work, no safety to worry about, just line up the sights & press the trigger.
I like the LCR & having it DAO is a plus if she ever needs to use it. No single action for the lawyers to claim "hair trigger" about. The recoil with a lightweight gun will be more, but practice with target ammo will help considerably there.
You could consider an all steel gun, but I think I'd stay with the DAO feature.
Hope this helps some.
Frank
 

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Zombie Hunter
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Discussion Starter #7
Former LEO here. As the others have said, spend some serious range time with her and let her shoot several different styles, brands and types of hand guns. She's got to be comfortable with it, or it's a waste of money. As for what I personally recommend to people (after someone here recommended it to me) is the Sig P238. The .380 has become a potent round rivalilng 9mm with the advancements they've made the past few years. The P238 is extremely easy to rack (two fingers) and just as easy to shoot. It's a 1911 style pistol so you get the great trigger that 1911's are famous for and also the quick, easy and reliable thumb safety. It's very small so people with small, and/or weak hands can handle it easily. At the same time, I find it very easy to shoot with my large hands.

I would definitely advise you to try and get/rent/borrow a P238 to let her try. And maintenance on it is a snap. I'd say even easier than a revolver. Lastly, it's a Sig! Sig Sauer makes great firearms and the P238 is no exception.

That is the sidearm my wife settled on after she decided the LC9 was too much! She loves it. Thanks!
 

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As much as it hurts to admit it, Fonejack54 had a good point. Most folks in my profession are just not into guns. You'd be appalled [God knows I sure am] at the low shooting scores I've seen many of my colleagues produce. Obviously, Yours Truly is a rarity, otherwise I wouldn't be on this forum. Anyhow: My usual advice for beginners is a good revolver, such as the Ruger SP-101. DA wheelguns are utterly simple, and in .357 Magnum there is that wonderful versatility of being able to use use .38 Specials. As the new shooter progresses and gets more comfortable, they can then move up into the Magnum rounds later if they so desire. I usually don't suggest semi-auto pistols for beginners; with their slides, slide releases, mag releases, etc., they can be intimidating for some as there is a lot more to learn. Also, it's never a bad idea to start a newbie out with a .22 for the first few rounds. Lots of new shooters have been chased away by a thoughtless "mentor" who gave them too much gun too soon. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
WGolf

I've been retired for about 6 years now, but for a new shooter I'd recommend a revolver. No slide to work, no safety to worry about, just line up the sights & press the trigger.
I like the LCR & having it DAO is a plus if she ever needs to use it. No single action for the lawyers to claim "hair trigger" about. The recoil with a lightweight gun will be more, but practice with target ammo will help considerably there.
You could consider an all steel gun, but I think I'd stay with the DAO feature.
Hope this helps some.
Frank
I've heard a lot of discussion on recoil from compact revovers and pistols. I would favor a wheel gun myself for her, even though I've always been a fan of semi-autos. I've been shooting since 1983 and can pretty much pick up anything and learn it quick. This will be her first, so I plan on a long day at the range trying out all that we can get our hands on. I inherited my wife's LC9 when she decided the recoil was too much. She now has a Sig 380. For me, taking down and cleaning any 1911 style pistol is easy, she's still learning. we're just going to have Stepdaughter try some until she finds one she likes. Thanks!
 

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Zombie Hunter
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Discussion Starter #10
As much as it hurts to admit it, Fonejack54 had a good point. Most folks in my profession are just not into guns. You'd be appalled [God knows I sure am] at the low shooting scores I've seen many of my colleagues produce. Obviously, Yours Truly is a rarity, otherwise I wouldn't be on this forum. Anyhow: My usual advice for beginners is a good revolver, such as the Ruger SP-101. DA wheelguns are utterly simple, and in .357 Magnum there is that wonderful versatility of being able to use use .38 Specials. As the new shooter progresses and gets more comfortable, they can then move up into the Magnum rounds later if they so desire. I usually don't suggest semi-auto pistols for beginners; with their slides, slide releases, mag releases, etc., they can be intimidating for some as there is a lot more to learn. Also, it's never a bad idea to start a newbie out with a .22 for the first few rounds. Lots of new shooters have been chased away by a thoughtless "mentor" who gave them too much gun too soon. Good luck.
I started my wife on the MkII and she did well. Then she fired her new LC9 for the first time and when she turned around to look at me her eyes were HUGE! She later settled on a Sig P238. We'll start Stepdaughter on the MkII and work her up. It's her choice, but I'm leaning towards revolver.
 

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If you want her to have a revolver(and I agree, its whay I carry), dont discount the LCR because some people say it has too much recoil. I find with mine(357) its pleasant to shoot with .38 standard pressure loads. Find a good jacketed hollowpoint and she should be fine. If she wants range practice, buy her the LCR-22 to go with it. Make sure she understands the centerfire is the carry weapon and the rimfire is the practice weapon. If she ever has to defend her life with it(god forbid)she will never feel the recoil anyway. If she simply cant handle the recoil from the LCR, the SP101 is an absolute joy to shoot with .38s
 

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LEO here and its gratifying to read about your concern for your stepdaughter as I have a stepdaughter of my own, we’re in the same circumstances. As my stepdaughter transitioned from a teenager and into an adult I spent time teaching her defensive tactics and how to protect herself. I also tried to instill a good sense of awareness of her surroundings in her as well, with mixed results. I did teach her how to safely handle and shoot a 22 rimfire rifle, 12 gauge pump shotgun and 22 pistol. She has small children and doesn’t want to have any firearms, her own choice.

All that I will suggest is that you sit down with your stepdaughter and discuss personal safety as well as protecting herself and how self-defense comes into play with this mindset. Then let her decide if she wants to own a firearm, learn to use it in a safe and responsible manner and is prepared to use it if necessary. If her answers are yes then teach her how to shoot and let her decide if she wants a semi auto 22 rimfire rifle, a pump shotgun or a handgun. Once she has decided then let her try examples and select the one she wants.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
LEO here and its gratifying to read about your concern for your stepdaughter as I have a stepdaughter of my own, we’re in the same circumstances. As my stepdaughter transitioned from a teenager and into an adult I spent time teaching her defensive tactics and how to protect herself. I also tried to instill a good sense of awareness of her surroundings in her as well, with mixed results. I did teach her how to safely handle and shoot a 22 rimfire rifle, 12 gauge pump shotgun and 22 pistol. She has small children and doesn’t want to have any firearms, her own choice.

All that I will suggest is that you sit down with your stepdaughter and discuss personal safety as well as protecting herself and how self-defense comes into play with this mindset. Then let her decide if she wants to own a firearm, learn to use it in a safe and responsible manner and is prepared to use it if necessary. If her answers are yes then teach her how to shoot and let her decide if she wants a semi auto 22 rimfire rifle, a pump shotgun or a handgun. Once she has decided then let her try examples and select the one she wants.
Thanks TNWNGR, all good advice. Where she is moving to the house already has a very fancy security system which tells me the previous home owner had concerns, and so do I. She's a smart and very practical kid who is cool under pressure. She has decided she wants a firearm and wants my help in working through the process. We probably go to a LFS next weekend run by someone she knows. They have a good selection of rentals for her to try, and they're getting together some training classes. That is a must. I can teach her what I know, but she will probably learn more from an instructor who teaches all the time. I'm sending my wife to learn with her.
 

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I set the wife up with a model 37 S&W works great for her..I some times pack a S&W model 36 can carry it all day and not evan know it's there.
 

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I know there's a lot of leaning here towards a revolver and there's nothing wrong with that. Though a revolver seems more simple and reliable, I don't think that's really the case with modern semi-auto's. Take for example the P238 I mentioned.

  • Recoil - advantage P238
  • Hand strength required - advantage P238
  • Ease of loading - advantage P238
  • Risk of ammo falling out in a panic situation - advantage P238
  • Number of rounds without reloading - advantage P238 7+1 or 8+1 depending on the mag
  • Weight - tie LCR/P238 - the LCR is slightly lighter unloaded, but loaded I'm betting that the P238 is slightly lighter
  • Trigger pull - advantage P238, shorter, lighter and safer with the thumb safety
  • Size - advantage P238, it's much smaller and thinner than any of the revolvers mentioned
  • Cleaning/maintenance - advantage P238. Just pop the barrel out without tools and you can give one a good cleaning in about 5 minutes
  • Sound - advantage P238 - this depends on the load you're shooting in the revolver, but most .38/.357 rounds are quite a bit louder than a .380.
  • Ease of use - tie - P238 requires the thumb safety be disengaged, but it's a nice crisp SA trigger pull from there. The revolvers generally don't have any sort of safety but rely on a long, somewhat heavy, two stage trigger pull.
  • Resale - right now, it's advantage P238. I would expect it to remain, but it's hard to tell how the market will go with popular guns.
  • Frame - advantage P238 - it's light weight aluminum, not poly or heave stainless steel
  • Sights - advantage P238 - the other models may have nice sights, but I would be hard pressed to say any of them are better than the standard SIGLITE night sights
  • Reputation/reliability - P238. Most revolvers are pretty reliable, but the P238 is a proven, reliable model with the backing of Sig Sauer, one of America's premier firearms manufacturers.
  • Price - advantage P238. They can usually be had for aboutr $500 - $550. You guys know what the revolvers cost and I'm betting it's more in almost every case.
  • Knock down power - tie, depending on what is loaded into the revolver. I'd put a hot .380 over a 38 and while the revolver might take a hotter round, that's not to say that a young girl would feel comfortable shooting a .38+P or a .357.
 

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Zombie Hunter
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Discussion Starter #16
jlh820, Thanks. This is all good info. Since my wife already owns the Sig, I'm going to try to meet up tomorrow with my Stepdaughter at the range and let her try it. I have heard nothing but good about the Sigs and Truly have always been a semi-auto fan. I'll let everybody know how this works out.:cool:
 

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jlh820, Thanks. This is all good info. Since my wife already owns the Sig, I'm going to try to meet up tomorrow with my Stepdaughter at the range and let her try it. I have heard nothing but good about the Sigs and Truly have always been a semi-auto fan. I'll let everybody know how this works out.:cool:
I guess I wasn't keeping the wives and daughters straight in my head. It's "your" wife that has the P238. So, I'm just preachin' to the choir! :rolleyes:
 

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I'm not knocking the .380, I carry one myself sometimes but it's a back up gun.

I think we'll find even the most anemic .38 Special ammo is as good or better than the .380 performance wise.

There are a number of .38s that drastically outperform the .380. A couple are the Speer 135gr GD HP +P, another is one I've tested mysely & given it's more expensive than most .380s, but it's the Buffalo Bore .38 Special 158gr lead SWC HP non +P. I've actually chronographed that load out of a 2" revolver bbl at 867fps & remember it's non +P.

I would not rely on a .380 as primary, I'd find SOME way to carry at least a .38.
Frank
 

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Here are three websites for women. You may wonder why a 69 year old male is interested in women gun websites, it's because I have a wife and three daughters. My girls are young adults, the oldest is familiar with shooting, the middle daughter is good at shooting and owns her own firearms, and the youngest won't have anything to do with guns. A lot of good info on these websites.

Paxton Quigley's Blog


Cornered Cat - Table Of Contents


Women & Guns
 

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I'm not knocking the .380, I carry one myself sometimes but it's a back up gun.

I think we'll find even the most anemic .38 Special ammo is as good or better than the .380 performance wise.

There are a number of .38s that drastically outperform the .380. A couple are the Speer 135gr GD HP +P, another is one I've tested mysely & given it's more expensive than most .380s, but it's the Buffalo Bore .38 Special 158gr lead SWC HP non +P. I've actually chronographed that load out of a 2" revolver bbl at 867fps & remember it's non +P.

I would not rely on a .380 as primary, I'd find SOME way to carry at least a .38.
Frank
I would agree a 38+P would have the edge on a 380 but I've shot 380+P's in my P238 and I can't tell the difference in recoil compared to the non+P. I don't have the ballastic data handy but I'm betting both +P's are very similar and I would venture to guess the recoil is stronger in the revolver. On the force we used to practice with 38 wadcutter reloads and they definitely had more kick in my model 19/66's than my P238.

Mainly it's going to be what the girl feels more comfortable with. But I would trust the P238 with SD rounds for my daughter. I actually bought the P238 for my daughter but we decided it might not be advantageous for her to have a loaded gun in her house. She can still have it if she changes her mind, but then I'd have to buy me another one! :D. But too your point, IMO, a good SD 380 round has sufficient stopping power, especially at close range.
 
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