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Old April 5, 2018, 07:36 AM   #1
PlatinumCore16
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Helping out a Newbie

Alright, so I am taking my roommate to go shooting this weekend. They have expressed interest in becoming proficient because they would like some self defense in the home. They have said they have looked into concealed carrying, but didn't really seem to have a real want to go that route, so for the purpose of this post, we'll assume HD only. They have said they shot with their dad before and they are a little scared of the noise/recoil.

Now on to the question: I have both a CCW and a full size. They have held both. What I would like advice on is, do I start them off shooting the full size, knowing that their primary intent is (most likely) HD? OR do I have them shoot the CCW to start so that they can feel the smaller size and then work up to the full size?

Thank you for all advice.
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Old April 5, 2018, 07:46 AM   #2
Lohman446
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Generally speaking full size firearms are easier to handle. A slightly longer sight radius helps aiming and the extra mass tames recoil with similar cartridges. The grips tend to allow a "full" grip where some compact and sub-compact firearms do not.

Case in point: my wife absolutely HATED my G26 but loves her G17C.

As an aside I hope I never have to experience I have always felt a full size firearm would be able to take control of should something go wrong and the user accidentally create a safety issue with it but this is probably drastically over thought. The larger firearm does make it easier for me to tell where it is pointed
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Old April 5, 2018, 08:21 AM   #3
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As a general rule of thumb I would start them off with a 22LR Ruger. Let them get a feel for pulling the trigger and handling the gun. If this new shooter is "scared" of the noise and recoil this is the place to start if you can.

From there I go to a DA/SA revolver. No mags to worry about no slide lock decocker etc... I load up light load 38 spl and let them feel the difference between 22LR and a defensive sized caliber. It also allows them to feel the difference between DA and SA.

Once they have a decent feel for the revolver we move on to an semi-auto pistol. I normally start here with a 9mm. If they master that I will also introduce a 45 ACP. What guns do you have? Does the new shooter have larger or small hands? These are considerations when choosing which one to start with. If your fullsized gun does not "fit" them but your CCW gun does it would be better to shoot the CCW gun.

If fit is not a major consideration shoot the fullsized gun. It will be larger with a longer sight radius. It will be heavier and absorb more recoil than a typical CCW gun.

The #1 goal here is to get them used to and comfortable with the gun in their hand. Take is slow. You do not want to cause more fear or dislike of recoil and noise. Make sure you have good hearing protection. If you have them make sure they are wearing electronic ear pro so they can hear you and your instructions. If it is still too loud I would also have foam ear plugs available so they can double up if they need to.
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Old April 5, 2018, 08:50 AM   #4
Bartholomew Roberts
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While it is a serious subject, keep the experience fun and don’t try to pack too much information into a single session where they glaze over. Pick a very basic idea and work on that only. Something with some entertainment value.

I also like to discuss basic weapons manipulations, safety and what to expect at the range in a separate discussion a few days prior to going to the range. That way you aren’t hindered by hearing protection and the familiar environment helps put them at ease. However, I still identify a safe backstop and enforce muzzle discipline when doing this (another good thing to hit on without additional stimuli and hearin protection).

At the range, starting with a .22 is always a good move if you can. A suppressed .22 with a red dot on an uncrowded outdoor range is the platinum approach. From there, I progress into full-size 9mm with low height over bore.
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Old April 5, 2018, 08:56 AM   #5
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Use the KISS principle

Stop for a minute and remember back to your first time with handguns.

For a lot of folks they got their education in firearms watching Bruce Willis shoot smiley faces is paper targets rapid fire.

Begin with the end in mind. I would not even bring my LCP for that range trip. Esp. since CC is not on the table a full size 9mm would likely be a good choice. Start with the 4 rules, and a .22, move up to the 9mm on the 2nd or 3rd range trip.
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Old April 5, 2018, 09:13 AM   #6
Lohman446
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While I am on board with the start with a .22 concept I would pay attention to the shooter. If he or she grows bored because he or she was expecting some action movie type pistol that may backfire as well. A shooter should leave his or her first range experience with a big grin. One can always circle back and learn the fundamentals of shooting accurately later.
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Old April 5, 2018, 10:51 AM   #7
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Slow and easy, wins this race !!!

Quote:
They have said they have looked into concealed carrying, but didn't really seem to have a real want to go that route, so for the purpose of this post, we'll assume HD only.
Even with this current requirement, you will find that this process in or can be evolutionary. I too would start out slow and easy and make it fun/successful. One of the biggest mistakes that I have seen when kids and beginners, is starting out too hot and scaring them away. Let them set their own pace and don't be surprised that some want to stick to the .22's. ......

I have taught a few all-women's classes and they make some of the best students I encounter but you have to go slow and easy and always maintain a positive attitude. ......

Be Safe !!!
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Old April 5, 2018, 11:23 AM   #8
T. O'Heir
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"...scared of the noise/recoil..." Start 'em with a .22. Mind you, it's more about the noise than the recoil, so good ear defenders and eye protection is essential. And the firearm must fit their hand.
And make it very clear that nobody can defend their house without proper training. There ain't no such thing as a "natural shot".
"...have both a CCW and a full size..." A what and a full size what? A CCW is not a firearm model or type. Neither is a "full size".
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Old April 5, 2018, 02:14 PM   #9
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Agree with some of the above. Start out with a 22lr. This is a great way for them to overcome their fear and avoid getting a case of flinchitis. The 22lr is a great platform for them to learn their basic skills such as maintaining sight picture, breathing, trigger control, and allowing them to develop good muscle memory and endurance without breaking the bank. Once they have established a good grasp of basic gun skill and have developed their confidence moving to a higher caliber handgun will make for a better transition without them having to fear recoil. After all, what good does it make to have a heavy caliber weapon if you can not hit what you are aiming at.
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Old April 5, 2018, 02:41 PM   #10
SIGSHR
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Yes, start with a 22. Plugs and muffs.
The first handguns I fired were an M1911 and a Browning High power, but I didn't learn to shoot until I practiced Bullseye with my High Standard Victor.
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Old April 5, 2018, 03:30 PM   #11
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I am not trying to be crass but if you must ask about how to best conduct basic instruction, perhaps you are not the one who should be instructing them. I say this because their initial instruction needs to be spot on.

Honestly, I don't think it matters one way or the other which one you start with but if it were me, my inclination would be for them to shoot the largest overall size/heaviest gun first. If this is directed at HD, small and compact is not really a high priority. I have never found compact guns to be easier to shoot.
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Last edited by FireForged; April 5, 2018 at 03:38 PM.
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Old April 5, 2018, 05:14 PM   #12
Ricklin
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No argument

Why would we be thinking small for a home defense pistol? Concealment is not on the menu.
Self defense caliber guns have recoil, smaller self defense guns have more recoil, generally speaking.

Keep it simple. Holes in the target are a good thing, holes elsewhere generally not.

Some folks find it very challenging to accurately fire a pistol. Start with that. For which a .22 is the best "real" gun.

I spent a lot of time in my basement with a pellet pistol when I first learned to be reasonably accurate with a handgun.
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Old April 6, 2018, 02:48 PM   #13
PlatinumCore16
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Thank you all for the responses. I have taken others shooting before, some new, some not so much. But this is the first person who expressed the concern of the recoil. My ex was nervous, but we worked through it and she ended up enjoying it and was actually quite good with her personal firearm. I really like the idea of working through the manual of arms prior to being at the range. And I know this won't be the last person who I introduce to pistols and I have read a lot about the benefits of shooting with a .22lr, so maybe I'll just see what my LGS has on the shelf.

For those asking, I have a Taurus 9mm and a S&W 9mm. So if no inexpensive .22lr's are available, we'll just stick to the S&W.

Thanks again,
Platinum

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Old April 6, 2018, 06:04 PM   #14
Don Fischer
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My P 89 Ruger is full size and 9mm Recoil is not bad at all and for the home, it carry's twice the ammo the concealed carry handgun does. For myself for home defense it would be full size. I would not start them with a 22 unless you have one or know someone that does. Even then they will probably compare the 22 recoil to the 9mm or maybe a 380. Don't know anything about the 380, never shot one.
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Old April 6, 2018, 06:36 PM   #15
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Safety first. Teach them all the safety rules. Teach them about ammunition and caliber. It must match with the markings on the firearm. Teach them handling and operations of the firearm. This should be done in a classroom with no ammunition. Then range.
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Old April 6, 2018, 06:57 PM   #16
Ricklin
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Try a Japanese guy!

I work with a manufacturer in Tokyo, there export manager and I have become close friends.
My friend Tatsuya loves to fish, I try to take him fishing when he visits here. He shows me the sights in Japan when I go there.

We finished fishing (skunked) but had a little extra time before I had to bring him to PDX for his flight home.

I asked him if had ever shot a gun, he said he had never even touched a real gun. I of course was pulling in to my range as I am asking the question....I know my friend.

Don't think I have ever seen anyone pick up a handgun (G19) and proceed to shoot good groups @ 7 yards. I asked him how that was possible....he smiled sheepishly and said.....video games!

When I next visited Japan the targets from that day were proudly hung above his desk.
It was the MOST FUN I had ever had introducing anyone to guns. I regret not shooting video but was of course very safety focused and could not.

Next time will be trap. but gotta find a gun that fits him so he will have fun. I am a LOT bigger than he.
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Old April 6, 2018, 08:24 PM   #17
WVsig
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricklin View Post
I work with a manufacturer in Tokyo, there export manager and I have become close friends.
My friend Tatsuya loves to fish, I try to take him fishing when he visits here. He shows me the sights in Japan when I go there.

We finished fishing (skunked) but had a little extra time before I had to bring him to PDX for his flight home.

I asked him if had ever shot a gun, he said he had never even touched a real gun. I of course was pulling in to my range as I am asking the question....I know my friend.

Don't think I have ever seen anyone pick up a handgun (G19) and proceed to shoot good groups @ 7 yards. I asked him how that was possible....he smiled sheepishly and said.....video games!

When I next visited Japan the targets from that day were proudly hung above his desk.
It was the MOST FUN I had ever had introducing anyone to guns. I regret not shooting video but was of course very safety focused and could not.

Next time will be trap. but gotta find a gun that fits him so he will have fun. I am a LOT bigger than he.
That is a great story! LOVE IT.
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