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Old November 26, 2004, 04:29 AM   #1
Join Date: November 26, 2004
Posts: 84
New guy - rebuilding the arsenal

Been reading here for months, finally decided to join in. Hoping to get some feedback. My question is not strictly about handguns, but this looks like a good place to start.

I had a lot of gun experience from age 10 to 24 - lots of shotguns, also rifles, black powder, some handguns. At 24 I moved away from home and out of the country - sold all my guns and in the years since then, my dad (who owned most of the guns I used) has sold his guns (bad health). Now 15 years later and feeling like I've forgotten everything about shooting (but not about safety), I want to resume my responsible place as a citizen providing for the common defense.

On a budget (who isn't) I want to gradually build up my arsenal for my basic 4 reasons to own firearms (1) Home defense (2) Enjoy shooting (3) Might go hunting, then again might not (4) If it all goes to hell, head for the hills.

My plan is to acquire in the following order for the reasons stated:
(1) Revolver - reliable, low-maintenance easy way to get back in the game - until I rebuild skills by training and practice, the large clip size and quick reload of an auto is not my goal, a few effective shots is; probably a Ruger GP-100 .357 4" or comparable
(2) Shotgun - 12 or 16 gauge pump; versatile for home or field; Remington 870 or Moss 500 with a short and long barrel
(3) Auto Handgun - more combat capable than a revolver; probably a 45 ACP - haven't narrowed it to specific model
(4) Rifle - I probably have least need for this, but the "head for the hills" or some possible hunting scenarios; I have most experience w/ 30-06, but would have to research it
(5) More and more of the same...

I've thought about it a lot, and this makes sense to me; looking for other opinions before I drop the cash for my first purchase.

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Old November 26, 2004, 04:45 AM   #2
Sir William
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OK! Welcome back! My suggestions are simple. A revolver such as the S&W 25, 625 or 325 in 45 ACP or a S&W M66 357 Magnum. The semi-auio choice is simpler-1911! The greatest 45 ACP. In 9MM, I like the Browning Hi-Power or FN Hi-Powers. I prefer the new Mossberg 590 in a pump. I have great experience with Baikal shotguns too. The rifle is wide open. Enfield Mil-Surp, Uberti lever actions, bunches of semi-autos too. The best thing is to pick a caliber, action style and what stuff you want. Good shopping!
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Old November 26, 2004, 08:36 AM   #3
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The Ruger GP-100
The Sigarms P-220
Remington 870 Express with a 18in barrel and a 25in to 28in barrel
The Ruger M-77 in 30-06 with a Nikon Pro Staff scope.

Don't forget the Ruger 10/22. No gun cabinet is complete without a good .22lr!
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Old November 26, 2004, 09:09 AM   #4
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As stated, you need a .22 rimfire rifle. I would recommend a Smith 19 or Ruger Security Six. Both are readily available and relatively inexpensive. There are some very expensive 1911's that don't always work. I have had very good luck with the original Colts. Have no experience, but have heard good things about the Springfields and very good things about the Kimbers. Stay away from the 16 gauge as ammo is not as easy to find as 12 gauge. A Remington 870, Winchester 1200, Mossberg 500 or Ithaca 37 would do just fine. There are a number of quality bolt action 06's out there. Ruger, Winchester, Remington or Savage are all good rifles. Look at what is cheapest and fits your needs.
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Old November 26, 2004, 09:48 AM   #5
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My Revolver choice would be either the K or L frame Smith and Wesson in .357. The Rugers are damn good guns but it's easier to find quality leather, speedloaders and just about everything else for the S&W guns.

Auto loader: Something simple, reliable with not alot of gimmicks I'd go with the SIG 220 as well. There are others I like but this is a great all around combat handgun.

Shotgun: You just can't go wrong with a Remengotn 870. get whichever barrels you want and you can go up or down and use that for whatever you want.

Rifle: I think the CZ's are a very good value. I also like Weatherby's Vanguard series. these can be had in several popular calivbers for under $500.00 with a decent scope.

If you want an auto loading rifle. there are several AK's out there that are great fun and a great value as well. That's a good starting point for just about anybody in my opinion. I'd also agree with the .22lr rifle. you can't go wrong with one of those.
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Old November 26, 2004, 03:17 PM   #6
Join Date: November 26, 2004
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Many Thansk- need local FFL

This is so great - I had no idea I'd get this many responses so quickly. What a service you all are providing. I'll consider all this advice. Good point on the 22LR.

Anyone have recommendations on a local FFL in Southern Cal (Orange County - Saddleback Valley, to be more specific) who I can trust to help me get started. One thing I've noticed in these forums is how many people recommend used S&W revolvers over the NIB options, but I don't want to pick a used revolver off the shelf without some trustworthy advice.

Thanks again.
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Old November 26, 2004, 04:00 PM   #7
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I think you're spot on with your original list. Add a .22lr like the 10/22 and maybe optics before the centerfire rifle, unless big game hunting is foreseen. The SKS is a very reasonable defensive centerfire if a priority. Turner's is usually reasonably priced for the pistols and SKS, Walmart probably would be the best deal on the shottie., .22 rifle and maybe ammo if they are out your way.
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Old November 26, 2004, 04:01 PM   #8
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My choices-
KPF-330 3" fixed sight GP-100 .357 magnum. Fun and compact gun
Glock 20 10mm, pricy bullets, great ballance of size and power
SAR-1 Semi auto AKM Nice gun, fun to shoot fairly cheap.
91/30 Mosin Nagant, 7.62x54, cheap bullets, neat well ballanced gun
EAA SXS coach gun 20" barrels Fun gun, good for hunting and defense
Ruger 10/22, sold mine for a 77/22 but now that hi caps are OK, gotta get 1
Cap&Ball revolvers shouldn't be overlooked, they are great fun at the range!
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Old November 26, 2004, 04:43 PM   #9
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My recommendations:
Revolver: Look at the Taurus 455's in CDNN Investments' catalog. $300 for an adjustable sight 5 shot .45 ACP (to go with your auto-loader later and +P rated) with a 2, 4 or 6 inch barrel. Also available it a 4" Ti version with fixed sights (which I just got) for $350.
Shotty: You're right on the $$$
Auto-loading pistol: CZ 97B, a bargin at any price but avilable for under $500.
Rifle: Tikka T3, CZ 550, or Savage.

My opinions but bang for the $ this is where I find the value to be.
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Old November 27, 2004, 04:10 AM   #10
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Revolver S&W 41 mag

Shotgun Mossie 12 gauge

Autohandgun Springfield Mil-Spec 1911 45

Rifle Weatherby Threat Response Rifle 308 Caliber Zeiss 3-9X50 scope

If I could only take one of each out of the safe.
No man is entitled to the blessings of freedom unless he be vigilant in its preservation
- General Douglas MacArthur
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Old November 27, 2004, 05:49 AM   #11
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I like your list. You NEED a 22lr rifle AND a 22lr pistol and the 22lr pistol would be the FIRST gun I would buy in your shoes.

These are the guns I would suggest but pick what you like the best:

*note:I would buy a 22 pistol before any of these guns to brush up on my skills and you will always enjoy the fun as well as the cheap practice. 22 pistol are a couple hundred cheaper than a new revolver as well if you get a base model. Ruger MKII, Browning Buckmark, or a quality brand revolver would be great picks.

1-S&W 357 mag (you pick the actual model) might consider 6" bbl if CCW is not a option
*insert 22 rifle here IMO
2-Remington 870 in 12 ga. new or used express, wingmaster, police it does not matter they are all great shotguns. you can always buy replacement bbls or have longer ones cut down
3-in 45 acp I would go with the 1911 but that is a preference issue
4-In CA this will be tough if you want a "assault" style gun, too many good options to mention though

Good luck and one bit of advice from someone that has way too many guns. Never buy on impulse. Do tons of research on the net (take personal opinions with a grain of salt) and do your best to touch, feel, and shoot before you buy. You will be more likely to buy what you actually want and need instead of buying guns to try them out as I have done in the past. I could be 100% happy and prepared for the rest of my life with about 5 or 6 guns if I did my research. Now I have tons of stuff I don't want. Don't get me wrong most of mine are good guns. I just have no use for them.
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Old November 27, 2004, 12:28 PM   #12
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Radshop, great minds think alike. We're in the same situation with the same priorities, and I almost completely agree with your order of guns. I currently have the revolver (Smith and Wesson 686) which you might want to consider as well, and am saving money for a remington 870. Next, ideally, would come a new kimber (I'm thinking eclipse pro 2), followed by a winchester model 70 rifle. Somewhere along the way, or perhaps after these, I'd also like a few 9mm such as the cz-75, and a glock 19.
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Old November 27, 2004, 06:12 PM   #13
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Radshop, how many guns total do you envision owning? Admittedly that's an unfair and ackward questions, especially coming from somebody who, like AUG, probably has too many. But most people have responded to your 1 thru 4 "short list", and you don't see any problems with them. Neither do I, but under "more of the same", are you saving room for a good, servicable, semi-automatic rifle with quick-detachable magazines? AK, AR, H&K, FN types? I really think a personal battery is incomplete without one, although an SKS is a reasonable stopgap measure.

And of course, we are now way off track for the General Handgun Forum.
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Old November 30, 2004, 01:40 AM   #14
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to Arizona Fusilier

Good questions, and I don't have an answer yet. I'm planning to take it slow and master each gun. The lessons of safe, responsible gunmanship my dad taught me 30 years ago are deeply ingrained. Assuming that I get my .357 first (an early Christmas present to myself), I'll practice shooting, loading, etc. until it is second nature before I buy a second handgun (except a 22LR as many have suugested).

I think assault-style rifles have a place, but I'm not rushing into that. Once I feel comfortable that I can make a well-selected shot with a bolt or lever action rifle, I'll consider something that can throw a lot of lead. I think the deliberateness that the extra step adds (working the bolt or lever) is valuable discipline. (These are my standards for myself, not pushing on them on others.) Since there is no rifle range near my house, it might be a while before I reach that point.

I go back to my basic reasons for wanting to buy a gun - home defense, enjoyment of shooting, recreational hunting, resistance/survival if necessary. Can I do all of those with a couple handguns, a shotgun and a lever action 30-30, for example. Well, there might be more adequate rigs for the last scenario, but I'll be pretty well set for the first 3. And even for resistance/survival, I'll be a lot better off if I master my weapons than by relying on a wall of lead.

I see that you're a senior member of the forum, and I don't want to come across like I don't appreciate your advice. this is just my current mindset. I'm taking in all responses, though. Thanks.
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Old November 30, 2004, 10:58 PM   #15
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my choices

I would look at a Shotgun News and see if anyone has a police trade in S&W for decent money, quite often model 10's, 14's, 19 's, 64's, 65's, and 66's show up for very decent prices.

I would buy a .22 revolver or autoloader too, as well as 10/22 or a 9422 or 39a.

I would not buy a Mossberg shotgun, stick with the Remington, the Mossberg is a alloy receiver and the union between the fore arm collar and the action bars is just a couple of spotwelds and I have seen those fail.

For a rifle, ask what you are needing it for and then go buy a ADL 700 in 308. nothing more accurate than it out of the box and always good resale and never any questions by the PRK Kommisars about its peaceful nature.

Then save and buy a good pistol you like, by this time you should have had enough time to get to try a few range guns and see what you like and what fits you. I would recommend something all steel and made in the USA. but that is personal preference just my twocents worth.
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Old December 1, 2004, 03:43 AM   #16
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I think your own initial choices are well on the right track, with the addition of a .22 RF pistol and or rifle. The tougher choice might be what centerfire rifle between a lever and a bolt-action. I happen to like the 30-30 lever-actions, but I would feel as confident with any good bolt action.
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Old December 1, 2004, 04:33 AM   #17
Ala Dan
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Here is the way I envision things shaping up:

Revolver- a 4" barrel Smith & Wesson 66/686; however a Ruger
KGP-141 would fit in quite nicely. The Smith would have a lot better
trigger, but the Ruger is built "tank tuff".

Semi-Auto- a good, quality 1911 or variant. I'm thinking
something along the lines of a Springfield Loaded, Kimber TLE, Colt's
New Roll Mark, or even a Para SSP 1911. Also, I wouldn't rule out a
Browning Hi-Power in 9m/m. On a lighter note, it might be a wise
decision to think in terms of a DA/SA self-loader like the SIG P220A
in .45 ACP.

Shotgun- Here I'm partial to the Remington 12 gague model
870 Marine Magnum, for its hostile environment qualities. The 18"
electroless nickel barrel is the only length available on this weapon.

Rifle- .30-06 caliber is the old standard answer here. Suitable
for most North American game, with a variety of bullets and
weights makes this a most excellent choice. My theory is the fact
that I find the Remington model 700 BDL a very hard weapon to
resist. Another bolt-action rifle that I have great respect for is
Steyr; with its cold forged barrel. In semi-auto's, the Browning
BAR would be hard to beat.

Rimfire Pistol- a) Revolver- Smith & Wesson 4" barrel model
18, hands down. Discontinued, but well worthy of seeking. 2nd
choice would be Colts Diamondback with a 4" tube; but here
again scarcity enters the picture.

Rimfire Rifle- Here again I vote for a Remington product,
the model 597. It has served well for a long, long time.

Just For Fun- a rifle that I'm excited about is the new
.204 Ruger, in their excellent model 77. There probably hasn't
been a better (hyper-velocity) varmint round since the .22-250!
Boy, thats saying a mouthful isn't it? This little bullet is stepping
out at over 4200 fps; so it would see a lot of use in my hands.

There you have it, my friend. Welcome back, and I'm interested
in learning of your decisions.

Best Wishes,
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Old December 2, 2004, 10:03 PM   #18
Lucky 7
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Posts: 454
Okay let's give this a try...

1) 'Nother vote for S&W 686 4-incher. Very good trigger, accurate, a tank. Get a Fobus holster and HKS spdlders and get to blasting!

2) Anything CZ-75-type for an autoloaders. The Witness gets the nod as you can buy a .45/.22 combo and spent about the same as you would on a Glock (Maybe less).

3) Mossberg 590 all the way. Get it parkerized and get to shooting!

4) I like the Enfield if you want to go the surplus route. It's chambered in either .303 or .308, it's fast, its sights are extremely rugged and its accuracy is very noble.
Production rifles I like the savage 110 models with the adjustable trigger. Mine is in 7mm Magnum but I known the .30-06/ .308 are very popular and accurate.

5) Fun gun is easy. Ruger 10/22. 'Nuff said!

Take care
Signature Space For Rent.
"Just relax. Breath normally. All you should see is the front sight post. Ignore the the target. Wait for the pause between breaths and when you feel good about it...ease the trigger back."
-PMI Sgt. Hopkins, USMC
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