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I am looking for a first pistol. I am thinking about a 9MM but i am more concerned with the price of the gun. Any one have any ideas about what a good cheap pistol would be for a beginner?
 

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Defensive use? Range only? Competition?

And define "cheap."

If you're just punching paper, the best bang for your buck is going to be a .22 LR Browning Buckmark. $200-300. Accurate, dependable, cheap to feed. And .22s are a lot easier to shoot and gain proficiency on - not a lot of bang or recoil to distract you from fundementals.

Also, finding an NRA First Steps Pistol class in your area is highly recommended. Best $75 I've spent. Safety, marksmanship fundementals, safety, takedown and cleaning, safety, etc.

Cheers.
 

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ditto the .22 recommendation .... you'll eventually buy one anyway.
 

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Absolutely. Learn on a .22. You will not regret it. The Browning is a fine choice. My first pistol was a Ruger, also a good choice.
Pete
 

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Glock 17, if you have large hands.

Glock 19, if you may ever want to use it as a ccw.

Both r 9mm. DON'T buy a .22 pistol as your first gun. If you want one, buy a .22 and a 9mm. As soon as I learned how to shoot my first gun, glock 19, I immediately wanted a .45 acp.

When you discover you want to step up you would have a useless .22, sure target shooting, but no sort of self defense gun. Buy the 9mm cause when you step up you still have a quality pistol that shoots a great caliber.

Also, if you don't buy a glock, make sure the 9mm you buy is rated for +P ammo.
 

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Ditto on the MSgunaddict. I have taught handgun classes for years and have NEVER started or recommended that a new student or gun owner purchase a .22 LR model handgun, unless they want to go out and shoot "bunnies" and/or squirrels. MS is right...when the student wants to move up in caliber..he/she ends up with a "paper weight" on their hands. Plus, a shooter will get bored real quick with shooting a steady diet of .22 LR.
I always start a new student out with a .9mm handgun...that fits their hand size, or in a revolver, a .38 Spl. With the grip system that I teach...the student quickly loses their concerns over felt recoil and focuses on the front sight. Now we can work on their marksmanship skills.
 

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you would have a useless .22, sure target shooting
I suppose that depends on one's mindset. If you think only about combat and self-defense, then the larger caliber is the way to go...
As a long time shooter, though, equating target shooting as a secondary and nearly useless activity bothers me. I don't know that that was the intention but it sure is what I came away with.
I, also, have instructed new shooters for years at my club and always encourage them to buy a .22 as a first gun. Why? They are more apt, in my experience, to shoot it more. And I am a firm believer in the efficacy of a lot of practice. .22s generally have better triggers; the round is gentle enough that developing a flinch is way less likely; the guns tend to be more accurate (stock) and ammo is cheap and readily available. Some one who wants to practice can go to the range and a 100 round session will cost 4-5 dollars as opposed to $20 or more for 100 rounds of 9s.
Just my .02,
Pete
I have my first .22 - a Ruger semi-auto - and I still put thousands of rounds a year through it. Yes, I own 9mms and .45s and I shoot them a lot also but the .22 is never far from the shooting bag.
 

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darkgael,
The school where I was an instructor did not allow .22LRs on the line. So a new student had to bring a .38 Spl pistol or a 9mm. I had to develop a style of teaching new students (mostly females) to master that weapon. 99% of the students were able to accomplish that goal. Now, if that student wants to buy a .22LR after that experience....I have no heartburn with that choice. I have two .22LRs in my collection, which I haven't shot in years. What with the price of ammunition as it is now...I might break them out, clean them up and take them to the range..!!
 

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I agree with the school of thought of a .22 as a first gun. I started my daughter on a Walther P22. She developed correct grip and a good concept of sight picture without the flinch reflex. It wasn't long before she wanted more gun. She selected a Smith & Wesson MP compact with tritium sights. I suggested a 9mm but she liked the .40 better and shoots the wheels off it. Just my opinion but I don't think she would have gotten that early confidence with a heavier caliber. She is a terrific shot...now she wants a Wilson 1911. The girl has taste. I kept the P22 for fun.
 

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In some ways I wish I'd learned on a .22
In other ways I'm glad I didn't! I can see the boredom potential.

ColoradoKid said
With the grip system that I teach...the student quickly loses their concerns over felt recoil and focuses on the front sight. Now we can work on their marksmanship skills.
I'm relatively new to shooting. Purchased a S&W .38 extended grip.

What bothered me about the S&W was recoil. Finally it dawned on me that in an ugly situation I'm not going to be worried about recoil.
 

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Lou,
The essence of recoil managemnet is the stance you consistently employ. Further, the grip that you adopt has a lot to say about any significant recoil and vertical rotation that you will deal with. You need to be in a solid Weaver stance and adopt an AMW grip. Together with these, you can shoot all day.
 

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Re: re: Good starter pistol

ColoradoKid said:
Ditto on the MSgunaddict. I have taught handgun classes for years and have NEVER started or recommended that a new student or gun owner purchase a .22 LR model handgun, unless they want to go out and shoot "bunnies" and/or squirrels. MS is right...when the student wants to move up in caliber..he/she ends up with a "paper weight" on their hands. Plus, a shooter will get bored real quick with shooting a steady diet of .22 LR.
I'm sure glad I didn't get started with such gross misinformation. A .22 LR is a GREAT gun to learn on, and you will never retire it. It's made for practice and plinking, and anyone who can't improve their shooting skills with a .22, probably wouldn't improve with anything. I've got over thirty guns, and five of them are .22s. They are great in the woods, killing empty cans, golf balls, or any kind of recreational shooting. A brick of .22s cartridges is still quite affordable, and will provide you with a whole day of fun. "Paper weight"? Not hardly. "Bored"? Never. Sure I love shooting my .44 mags, .45 Colts, .45 ACPs, .38s, .357s, but then, I enjoy shooting every caliber I own. You'll never get tired of the .22. That's why it's the most popular caliber in the world. Any range that doesn't allow them probably has some other pretty strange rules that would keep me from wanting to shoot there as well.
 

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Hey "Roadkill",
You need to lighten up a bit there big guy..!!! That was just my stated opinion about learning and training with the .22...nothing was written in stone. The last time I checked I still a constitutional right to speak my OPINION..! This may have been back when you were still filling your diapers, but during WWII, the U.S. military trained there new beginning recruits on the High Standard .22, but that doesn't make it right.! I just prefer to start a new shooter out with a .9mm S/A or a .38 SPL. pistol. It saves time.....in the meantime, deal with it...
 

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Re: re: Good starter pistol

ColoradoKid said:
The last time I checked I still a constitutional right to speak my OPINION..!
I agree, you do. So do I. That's what keeps this interesting.
 

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How many manufacturers offer .22 conversion kits for their full size guns, do you think? Let's see...CZ, Beretta, Kimber etc plus aftermarket kits. Shooting your heavy caliber handgun as a .22 is a good way to retrain your skills on that particular gun, plus it's a heckuva lot cheaper to shoot. If those guys think enough of the .22 to let their big guns shoot it, that tells me a lot.
 
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