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Old April 7, 2013, 04:18 PM   #26
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A snubnose Model 10 would be a good choice, loaded with standard 38 loads it wouldn't recoil much.
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Old April 7, 2013, 05:16 PM   #27
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The Model 10 is a K Frame. They're a bit heavy for small hands.
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Old April 7, 2013, 05:42 PM   #28
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My Mom decided she wanted a firearm in the house,so i took her out shooting and ran her through the gamut.She settled on a CZ-82,liked how it fit her hand,liked the kick,and she shot the most accurate with it.
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Old April 7, 2013, 06:36 PM   #29
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As always, she needs to try a variety of different handguns to find what works best for her. In this case, I'd suggest that you make sure she tries a small-framed revolver in .22Mag as well. This round tends to perform better that it should , and it often has minimal recoil. And 6-8 rounds of .22Mag tend to dissuade all but the most fanatical attackers.
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Old April 9, 2013, 08:56 AM   #30
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You probably won't be able to find a small .327 Fed Mag revolver at a range, but if she likes the feel of the Taurus Model 85 or 605, the Model 327 will be quite similar. It will have much less recoil with the .32 loads and as much as a 357 Mag with full power .327 loads.
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Old April 9, 2013, 09:07 AM   #31
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The issue with the DA revolvers might be the trigger pull. Recoil is less of an issue except in the lightest of J-frames, because you can always load 148-gr. standard pressure full wadcutters.

A steel 36 or 640 or SP101 might be the ticket, but it will probably need a trip to a competent smith to have the trigger lightened (a little bit) and smoothed (a lotta bit).

The virtues of this choice are that the gun is carryable, requires little practice, and with this load, recoil is light.
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Old April 9, 2013, 11:00 AM   #32
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Another +1 for a .327 SP101 and shoot mostly SD or .32 H&R SD rounds out of it,...or a .32 H&R lightweight snubbie. I've had a 431PD Airlite for years; outstanding little gun and manageable recoil even with "warm" H&R loads. (I have not tried the new BB or Corbon loads however, but looking forward to and imagine my Single Six especially will love them). The 432 was the hammerless/DA0 variant of the Airlite and a great choice as a pocket or purse gun.

Ironically, after years now of iffy .327 availability (certainly compared to others), it's one of few calibers/cartridges I've found on otherwise mostly empty shelves recently.- not always (and not WallyWorld) or in great quantity mind you, but better than most. I don't know if it's too late to insure their continued survival, but both the .32 Mags are the great underappreciated secret being slowly and quietly discovered my more and more folks, even as the "only bigger is better" industry and majority shooting public continue its apathy or at best lackluster support. My choice for HD bedside would be (and is) a K Frame .357/.38 - 3" or 4"--because I have it and weight in those circumstances is not an issue--loaded with +P"s or specific HD/SD ammo.... But, even with the K's in the primary HD role, the .32s make for a great CCW or BUG, or as a light trail (hiking or biking) companion. Otherwise, I would not feel undergunned with a .327 SP101 for all duties.

Last edited by gak; April 9, 2013 at 11:06 AM.
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Old April 9, 2013, 11:12 AM   #33
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Friend is considering SD/HD handgun

One good omen for the .327 might be the current panic. For a good while there people were buying everything with a trigger. I'd bet there are a few thousand more .327s in circulation now, and maybe more ammo demand. Same with 10mm and .357 Sig, at least for a while.
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Old April 10, 2013, 09:23 AM   #34
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My wife is 65 and not a large woman.
She has a Walther PPK/S in her car,and a Ruger LCP,and a S&W Model 637 that she carrys in her purse(not at the same time) and a Colt Detctive Special on her nightstand.
She shoots quite well with all of them.
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Old April 11, 2013, 05:28 PM   #35
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If she's going to carry it...hard to imagine a 60+ yo woman with no experience with firearms carrying anything but a purse...she'll need something simple, and fairly light, something with a grip that's not sized for a man's other words a J frame Smith.

A .38 special Chief's Special loaded with target wadcutters is light recoiling and a good defensive round where penetration is not an issue. Get her grips and let her practice at 3-7 yards, and let her quit for the day when she's tired. It isn't a test to see just how long she can go without flinching.

Airweights are great for pocket carry and a purse too if that's really an issue. But a standard weight is a better choice for recoil absorption and ease of shooting. Face it, I don't see her strapping on a pistol, revolver, mace, a blackjack, nada...she's going to carry it in her purse if at all, and for all practical purposes, weight doesn't matter there or on a night stand gun.

Moderate weight and a good trigger will make it fun to shoot, and not a contest in dealing with equates to practice time...if it isn't fun, she'll avoid it like hemorrhoids.

Pistols are all well and good for those of us with the bug for guns, but a 60+ woman isn't going to like a bunch of controls to mess with...mag button, take down lever, rack the slide, slip the safety off, find the nauseum. Get her a revolver in a light recoiling caliber, .22 lr if necessary and do some FUN training with her...bouncing coke cans along a range berm is fun, breaking clay targets at 5 yds is fun...endlessly plugging a silhouette man tg.t isn't.

Forget your own prejudices regarding the revolver vs. automatic debate and get her something that she'll like and shoot...and that's a revolver. Spend some time to get the DA function working smoothly and you'll be doing her a me, my wife is 64 and she brags to her pals that she has two guns of her own and can hit what she's aiming at....and a final word...if she can open a jar of spaghetti sauce, she can manage the DA pull on a good Smith Chief's Spl. Forget the cheapies, Taurus, Charter, et al. get her a Smith and be done with it.

JMHO, Rod....

Just noticed, you're in Louisville,,,,I'm in La Grange on a farm. Send me a PM if you need an informal place to give her a try with a cpl of guns. We've got several J frames to try, plus a .22 lr Colt're welcome with your GF as well. Rod
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Last edited by rodfac; April 11, 2013 at 05:34 PM.
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Old April 11, 2013, 07:45 PM   #36
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A nice used Model 15, not too heavy and doesn't have a lot of recoil. The snub nose guns are better for experts to shoot than for those who aren't experienced.
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Old April 11, 2013, 08:16 PM   #37
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I'm changing my vote from .38 snub nose to Ruger LCR-22 with 40gr CPRN Mini-Mags.

Eight shots, minimal (if any) recoil, inexpensive practice, lightweight, safe, 7.5 lb trigger pull.
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Old April 11, 2013, 08:50 PM   #38
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Until you get her to the range or at least a good gun shop, you won't really be sure what she is going to be comfortable with. Many smaller people are stronger and more determined than they appear.

My wife and I are in our late 50's.....she has decided it's time she learned how to shoot a handgun. Took her out back by the barn were I had put up a berm and took her through the safety issues again and explained and showed her the differences in function between a revolver and auto. After a couple of hours or so of shooting it was pretty easy for both of us to see she was more comfortable with the revolver....less complicated to her and a little easier to shoot.
All the shots she took with the revolver were double action. She handled the recoil just fine with both guns.
It's been my experience the new shooters are usually more comfortable when they get a revolver in their can always make grip adjustments if they are having trouble holding the gun, and there are enough different frame and cartridge sizes out there that you should be able to find a recoil level anyone feels at ease with.
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