View Full Version : Newbie questions about IDPA/equipment

April 25, 2002, 02:34 AM
Well I just starting shooting recently (.22 semi-auto), and I will soon be making my first handgun purchase (New Colt 1991A1). Anyway, a buddie of my said that I should shoot IDPA with them. Well, I don't know where to start. I know I can ask him (and his friends) about all I need to know, but I want all the opinions I can get. First off, I have hunted quail and shot shotguns since I was 12 and I have completed a hunter's safety course, so I understand and appreciate the the handling and safety of firearms. However, I think it is necessary to have some formal instruction with handguns, particularly in defense situations and in carry situations. Is this provided in IDPA (i will look at the site) or should I take a CCW class? Second, right now I don't intend to carry, but I want to shoot IDPA for the practicallity and mostly for fun (instead of just standing shooting at paper). I want to shoot a big gun rapid fire :D ! I am not thinking spray and pray here, just something different. Remember I hunt quail, so I am used to stuff moving and my blood flowin with adrenalene (sp). So my question is what is a good IDPA holster for a beginner? [edit]: Ok, just went to the IDPA site and saw the appendix A list of acceptible holsters, and ya, there were like 10,000. So if you could help me narrow that down to a comfortable, outside the pants holster for a full size 1991, that would great! Well any advice and comments are welcome. Thanks.


April 25, 2002, 06:31 AM
galco is on the list,good for the match and for real carry

April 25, 2002, 09:11 AM
It is hard for anyone to correctly tell you what is a good holster for YOU. That is like picking any other personal item, it depends a lot on personal choice, what works for one guy will be absolutely nonfunctional for another, depending on many factors. To make matters worse, we all have our favorites that work for us, so we tend to recommend them with wild enthusiasm and forget what is stated in my first sentence. Rather than give you a particular model, I would just say to look and see what the good shooters are using. Benefit from their experience. Second, don't cheap out. Most everyone on this board will tell you that a cheap holster is worse than no holster, as you will be out money learning that you should have bought something else.
Watch a match first. Learn to safely handle, load, unload, holster, and draw your gun. I have seen some new guys make some very dangerous mistakes the first few times...pointing guns at folks, finger on trigger during administrative handling leading to negligent discharges, poor muzzle discipline. Remember, don't hurry, let the SO direct you through the activity.
The payoff is skill, knowledge, and big fun.
IDPA #02346

Jim Watson
April 25, 2002, 12:04 PM
We've been breaking in a couple of guys over on Glock Talk.
Lots of good points, plus some of mine, at:
and another similar thread

Uncle Mike's Kydex holster is ok and economical. Not nylon. You can do better, but not for $20 and you can learn a lot with it.

The CCW class I took and the others I have heard or read of were oriented toward safety and legality. Range time is little or none. A real shooting class will be a terrific advantage if you can get to one. If you can't, see if one of the local SOs or Expert competitors will work with you to get you the basics of safe and effective gun handling before you enter a match.

IDPA is NOT training. We Safety Officers do what we can to get the novices through safely and enjoyably, but to quote a usually reliable source (me) you should know how to:
1. Operate your gun. Load magazine, load gun, aim, fire, unload.
2. Shoot your gun. Hit the target. Hit the target in the middle. Look at those CoFs (referenced on GT), you must be able to hit the target standing, sitting, kneeling, prone, advancing, retreating, moving across the range.
3. Use your gun. Under the Safety Officer's (SO) command, you will load, holster, then draw, shoot, move with finger out of the trigger guard, move while shooting, take cover wherever available to shoot or reload, reload, shoot some more, then "unload and show clear."

My first priority is
Don't hurt anybody, don't scare anybody, don't get disqualified for breaking a safety rule.

Much more from me and others on those threads at GT.

Pistol competition is not like quail hunting, .22 plinking or anything else you have ever done. It is great fun and a good test of your abilities, but you have to study to do it safely and well.

April 25, 2002, 02:03 PM
Jim (and others),

Thanks for all the info. I read all the stuff on GT and it was very humbling. I think I am just going to practice a lot, lot more and just watch some matches before I dive right in. I will probably get a glock after my 1911 (can't resist) and look into GSSF too. It all looks really fun, but I am definitely going to practice a lot before I start. I will get proficient handling my firearm, practicing with an empty weapon and dry firing seams to be a necessity also. Maybe by the end of the summer I will be ready to shoot my first match. Thanks again.

April 26, 2002, 06:07 AM
Most USPSA clubs offer "new-shooter" clinics to assist newcomers into the sport.


Your IDPA club may do the same.

www.uspsa.org "club-finder".

April 26, 2002, 06:09 AM
If you wait until you're 'good enough' you'll never get good enough.

All of us started 'new'...........I was always last for my first year..........