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Old July 6, 2012, 03:42 PM   #1
SilverUnicorn
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Shot a gun for the first time!

OK, so here's the deal. I turned 42 on July 4th, and until that day, I had never shot any gun of any kind other than a BB gun, and that does not count.

We went to a picnic at a friend's house. He has 7 acres of land backing up to power lines that gives him a total of 370 acres.

Anyway, we go every year, and there is always a shooting range set up away from the picnic (obviously). In past years, I have always watched, feelign that I did not need to shoot. This year, the guy that set everything up asked me if I wanted to shoot. I figured I would give it a shot (pun intended).

Started off with a Ruger P95 9mm handgun. For never having shot, I did okay (from what they told me), hitting in the outer circle of the target 9 of the 11 shots, and 4 of those were within the middle circle, which I guess was okay.

Anyway, from there moved to a Sig Sauer .45 cal handgun. More kick but still manageable, and I liked the weight and feel of that pistol.

After that the real fun started. Went to a .45 cal carbine rifle, then to an AK rifle.

So after all this, I am toying with the idea of a handgun for sport shooting. Just for fun. I am guessing 9mm will be less expensive (ammo wise) than larger caliber rounds.

Having never though about this before, what else should I consider? I don't plan on carrying a weapon, just ging shooting with friends, but you never know if that might change

This is all new teritory for me, LOL

Thanks,
Chris
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Old July 6, 2012, 03:57 PM   #2
Baba Louie
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Chris, welcome to TFL.

Shooting... it is fun, eh?

My own opinion is to begin with a quality .22lr. Cheap to feed, a hoot to shoot. Good learning tool. Once you have that mastered (or acknowledge that you are a serious student thereof), look for either a 9mm if semi autos interest you or a .38 spl if wheelguns are your focus. Move up the power ladder in that fashion IMO.

When your friends invite & offer to let you shoot, I'd ask them what other types of ammo you should buy and bring to continue your learning curve with their tools, but using your own fodder. Probably not necessary initially, but will be appreciated by all.

Stay safe SilverUnicorn. (oh yeah, speaking of "safe", make sure you know and practice the 4 basic safety rules too.)

May I also add, BB guns do kinda count, ya know? (You could shoot your eye out kid! old joke)

ETA: I can't spel so good
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Last edited by Baba Louie; July 6, 2012 at 06:02 PM.
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Old July 6, 2012, 04:03 PM   #3
aarondhgraham
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Welcome to the sport,,,

It all depends on how much you want to spend on the gun,,,
And then how much do you want to spend on ammo.

.22 Rimfire guns often cost just as much as centerfire pistols,,,
But the ammunition for them is considerably cheaper,,,
The best .22 ammo runs about 7-8 cents a round,,,
9mm ammo costs at least 20 cents a round.

Owning a gun you can't afford to shoot is no fun at all.

You will get many recommendations as to what pistol to buy,,,
My take would be to analyze your desires,,,
Then match a gun to those needs.

There are a tremendous amount of quality firearms out there,,,
My recommendation would be to get a CZ-75B in 9mm,,,
The pistol is very high quality and only $500 new.

These are my CZ's,,,
One is the CZ-75B in 9mm,,,
The other is the CZ-75B Kadet in .22 LR.

Surprisingly the Kadet in .22 LR was $100.00 more than the one chambered for 9mm.



But my best recommendation is to not be in a hurry,,,
Shoot all the guns that your friends own,,,
Then maybe hit a rental range.

Renting guns is also a ton of fun,,,
The money spent on rental fees and ammo,,,
Often keeps you from wasting money buying a gun you later don't like.

If you stick with the good names,,,
The pistols will all be high quality firearms,,,
Find one that feels good in your hands and makes you smile.

Enjoy the hunt for your perfect handgun.

Aarond

.
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Kirby: That's about all it takes, ain't it?
Combat: "A Silent Cry"
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Old July 6, 2012, 04:23 PM   #4
SilverUnicorn
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Thanks!

As I said this is all new to me, and so far I am very overwhelmed, LOL

I think the best thing to do will be go and feel what is best by actually holding them and seeing how the "fit" is.

Thanks again!

Chris
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Old July 6, 2012, 04:28 PM   #5
Spats McGee
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Wecome to the dark side, Chris! Come on in. We have cookies.

Seriously, though, shooting is a whole lotta fun, and you can get lots of good information here. As aarondgraham pointed out, a good .22 pistol will get you tons of trigger time, without huge ammo expenditures. That said, you'l need to figure out: (a) what's the purpose of the gun (target, self-defense, both?); and (b) what do you want to spend on the gun. Ammunition costs will also need to be considered in choosing. There are tons of "what gun should I get" threads up in Hogan's alley; you might consider browsing some of those to get a heads-up on some of the options available to you, and some of the reasons for choosing one pistol or another.

Edited to add: Oh, and you might as well learn the Four Rules now. They are of critical importance.
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Last edited by Spats McGee; July 6, 2012 at 04:36 PM.
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Old July 6, 2012, 04:43 PM   #6
aarondhgraham
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Wise choice,,,

Quote:
I think the best thing to do will be go and feel what is best by actually holding them and seeing how the "fit" is.
Wise choice Grasshopper.

Aarond

.
__________________
Caje: The coward dies a thousand times, the brave only once.
Kirby: That's about all it takes, ain't it?
Combat: "A Silent Cry"
Aarond is good,,, Aarond is wise,,, Always trust Aarond! (most of the time)
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Old July 6, 2012, 06:01 PM   #7
Baba Louie
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Chris
4 safety rules Spats refers to... I mispelled them as dules... doh!

http://thefiringline.com/library/safetyrules.html
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Old July 6, 2012, 06:29 PM   #8
Slotback
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Welcome to the fun world of shooting.
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Old July 6, 2012, 06:30 PM   #9
Amsdorf
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Nothing like your first time shooting.


My first time was when I was about nine years old on my Uncle Butch's country property in Collinsville, IL. A 12 gauge shotgun.

We blew a tin trash can to pieces.

I was hooked from that day until now, 51 years later.

Welcome to the obsession!!!
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Old July 6, 2012, 07:37 PM   #10
Frank Ettin
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Welcome, and please save me some of the cookies -- I missed lunch.

For fun, it's hard to beat a .22. But another part of the fun is learning about, shooting and becoming proficient with different guns.

You might also want to see if anyone is offering an NRA Basic Handgun class near you. That can be a good way to lay a solid foundation.

The subject can be overwhelming, and many of those of us who have been shooting for a while forget what is was like when we were new and ourselves overwhelmed. Start slowly. Give yourself time to learn. And the first order of business is to be safe.
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Old July 6, 2012, 08:15 PM   #11
Al Den
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Welcome and congratulations. Lotta fun, and you sorta started right in the middle and did well enough it seems to me.

I would agree that a .22 (.22 Long Rifle cartridge) is probably the way to go. I sorta like revolvers for a first handgun for folk, but, the semiautos, even the less expensive namebrand ones, are generally all so very good today I wouldn't blame you for going for one of those...

Do take the NRA Basic Pistol class, at least the First Steps class -- you'll feel better and sort of liberated from all the opinions that everyone in the world has many, many, of.
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Old July 7, 2012, 06:00 PM   #12
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I agree, take a basic class and shoot some more with your friends.
After that you will have a pretty good idea of what fits you best.
Have fun!!!

Mark
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Old July 7, 2012, 11:25 PM   #13
raimius
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I concur with the "take a class" suggestions. They are almost always well worth your time and money.
Also, memorize and always follow the four rules! They will keep you and everyone around you safe and happy.

As for a gun, I would suggest a .22LR or a 9mm (.357 if you want a revolver, as they can shoot .38 as well). The advantage of the .22 is that ammo is a LOT cheaper ($20 can get you 500 rounds, compared to about 100 rounds of 9mm). They also don't recoil as much, so you have less of a chance of developing bad habits. The advantage of a 9mm or .38 is that they are suitable for defensive use and shooting games like IPSC or IDPA (very fun, in my opinion). They will also help you to learn recoil control...as recoil control in most .22 handguns consists of doing pretty much nothing.
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Old July 8, 2012, 09:24 PM   #14
FlySubCompact
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Even at 42 I'm glad you discovered something you didn't know you were missing. Fun, ain't it.

Most have suggested some sort of .22. Could not agree more. Now your choice will be longarm or handgun.

If I were just starting out from scratch....no guns (sorry, freaking myself out imagining that I had no guns at all.... )....I'd personally go with a .22 rifle first.

Then a .22 handgun. Revolver or semiauto.

A single shot 20gage would be third.

.357 mag revovler, forth.

Semiauto 9mm, fifth.

That is just my personal tier, but that is exactly where I'd start.
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Old July 10, 2012, 06:02 PM   #15
r_magill
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Congrats and welcome! As others have posted, I would suggest a .22, especially if you are considering bullseye-type shooting as opposed to IDPA type shooting.
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Old July 10, 2012, 07:26 PM   #16
JWT
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As others have said, Welcome and congrats. Completely agree taking a basic shooting course before you really get into the sport is a very good idea.

I would also start with one of the many .22 or handguns available. They're fun, and equally important, inexpensive to shoot. Try to go to a range where they rent some and try as many as you can. Then consider buying one.

Have fun and be safe.
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Old July 13, 2012, 01:12 PM   #17
SilverUnicorn
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Thanks for all the warm welcomes!

I am looking into classes in my area. Is it odd to take a class without owning a gun yet? Do they provide training guns at the classes?

I will be looking at some things this weekend as far as purchasing.

I am glad my first experience was a good one. While I was never "scared" of firearms, I guess I could say I was "intimidated" by them. That part is pretty much gone now, so the fun begins!!!

Safety is and always will be #1 for me. It was at the location I was for the first shoot as well. That was very impressive to me as well.

Thanks again for the warm welcomes. If I get a firearm, I will be sure to post a picture

Until then, I am trying to absorb all the information I can.

Chris
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Old July 13, 2012, 01:50 PM   #18
Spats McGee
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As far as guns for the classes, that's up to each individual instructor or school. Some may have guns to loan, some to rent, and some not at all. Just call and ask. There's no need to be shy about it. You won't be the first person to ask them that, and you won't be the last.
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Old July 13, 2012, 04:47 PM   #19
Baba Louie
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Quote:
Is it odd to take a class without owning a gun yet? Do they provide training guns at the classes?
As Spats wrote, call and ask. Not odd at all to take a class without owning one. You're there to learn, they're there to teach using their firearms as examples typically. (ya like the they're, there and their in one sentence?)

I thought you said you own a BB gun? You practice safety with it, same rules apply. (consider it always loaded, muzzle pointed away, finger off trigger, know your backstop and what's behind it).

Cruise thru the TFL library (top blue header bar every page) and read. Use the search function as well (below library in blue header), type in "(whatever interests you at the moment)" and see what comes up in way of threads. You've got at least 12 or 13 years of questions, with knowledgable responses at your fingertips contained therein ranging from black powder to rimfire to centerfire, rifles shotguns, revolvers, semi autos, hunting, competition, history of, how to fix, what to do, politics of the RKBAs, laws ... you name it, if it goes bang someone here has asked, answered, boasted and posted and/or chimed in.

You can spend days upon days reading & learning doing so. There are some very wise people here and some fine firearms to learn about.

For some fun search "9mm v .45" or "what gun for bears" or "what gun is best..." (those are always a hoot to read).
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Old July 14, 2012, 05:59 AM   #20
SilverUnicorn
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Thanks Spata and Baba

I will look for a local class. On a side note, I think I found my first purchase!

I good friend, who is very kowledgable, has some pistols of his for sale. Looked at both an H&K USP 9mm and a Colt 1911 Combat Elite(.45).

I really liked the H&K. Was a great fit, not too heavy, came with alot of stuff too. Not sure if it was overpriced, but again, I am learning, and it will definately come with some service after the sale if need be.

Might pull the trigger on it (so to speak) this week, and would start a new thread if that is the case. Maybe I can hit the lottery and get both the H&K and the Colt, LOL.

Chris
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Old July 15, 2012, 05:44 PM   #21
Al Den
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Silver, you might have a great deal there and will have fun, however, my concern for you is a) that you will not fancy the recoil of those larger guns (which will not contribute to good shooting) and b) that the inherent inaccuracy and/or expense of those larger calibers will leave you disappointed in the safe shooting sports.

I am not trying to discourage you by any means -- far from it. But consider a decent .22, some above-average rimfire ammo, and some competition style practice for a 2nd gun.

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Old July 17, 2012, 06:28 AM   #22
SilverUnicorn
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I appreciate your input Al.

That is a good idea actually. Though I will be getting the H&K in a few weeks, but will look into a .22 option as well. They look cool, and for just plinking at the range, might, as you said, be a more cost-effective option.

I appreciate (sincerely) everyones ideas and suggestions.

Chris
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Old July 17, 2012, 08:42 AM   #23
Skans
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Chris, you got the bug! Yep, it starts out "shooting with friends". Then you want a gun of your own, for fun (heck, they are all fun!). Then you need one for your wife....for protection, and another for when you want to take friends shooting with you.

Next thing you know, you will have a safe full of guns and you need a bigger safe.....for bigger guns.....and more guns....

You are well on your way to becoming one of those "gun nuts".......just wait and see.

Welcome to the shooting sports!
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Old July 17, 2012, 08:51 AM   #24
TheNocturnus
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Quote:
I am glad my first experience was a good one. While I was never "scared" of firearms, I guess I could say I was "intimidated" by them. That part is pretty much gone now, so the fun begins!!!
Welcome to TFL and the world of shooting. I read this comment and had to post. You should never lose the fear or intimidation of firearms. That fear will keep you and others safe. They are fun to shoot but never forget that they are deadly instruments and can kill in an instant.

I am a proud CCW permit holder and carry everyday. I handle a gun several times a day (gotta take it off to pee, lol) and I always keep in mind the 4 basic rules of firearm safety because I know the moment I relax on those rules is the moment someone gets hurt.

Be safe and do have fun, just don't forget that fear.
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Old July 17, 2012, 11:53 AM   #25
Sheriff Gotcha
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Aarond hasn't steered me wrong yet, as I am relatively new to this as well. (Only been shooting 3 times and do not own a firearm of my own yet)

Just some food for thought, I can get 550 rounds of .22 ammo at Wal-Mart for $18.95 (I think it was last I saw, in my area by the way PA), whereas I can get 50 rounds of 9mm for $15.00 ish dollars I think (I didn't look at the 9mm's only the .22's at the time)

Of course the quality will vary the price, but just to give some insight, you will be shooting thousands of .22 ammo vs hundreds of any other caliber type of ammo.

If your primary use is for range fun, I can't see anything better than a .22 caliber firearm.
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