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Howdy all! Yesterday (Monday) was my first day really shooting a pistol and I fell in love. I plinked with my grandfather's .38 "Saturday Night Special" and .22 revolver a few years back and always wanted to do it again. I finally found a range near me, talked with the range supervisor for about 30 minutes to figure out what I knew/didn't know before we even started talking about what pistol I should rent for the session (the final answer was a Glock 17, which I really enjoyed).

I really appreciated the fantastic instruction I received (the place was pretty busy, but the range master would come to my station on occasion and critique my groupings and give me pointers. And yes, he did the empty magazine trick to prove that I had a flinch reaction. Ultimately, I felt like I was "part of the club" even though I was obviously a first timer. From what I read on the forums, recreational shooters and hardcore CCW'rs seem really accepting and friendly: I wonder if its something in the gunpowder?

So besides glowing about my first real shooting experience (I have a lesson later this week to start fine tuning, now that I'm comfortable putting rounds downrange) I wanted to ask a few questions:
1) How long should I rent a firearm (at $15 per session) before I start looking into purchasing one? After just one session I'm not looking at a concealed carry permit just yet, so having a gun that I'm intimately familiar with and trust my life to is not really an issue. I'm more looking at it as a baseball that I'm comfortable with using because I know its weight and length.

2) The Glock 17 felt really good in my hands and came strongly recommended by the range master and attendants. Should I try a few other weapons, or should I be happy with "love at first sight" and continue practicing with the Glock 17 except when I'm wanting the experience of something new?

3) How often do ya'll shoot (this mostly applies to non-law enforcement/military) if you have to go to a private range?

4) And, of course, the ubiquitous: What semi-automatic would you recommend for a fairly large man? (6'2", 240'ish, etc). I've shot revolvers before, and just didn't really like them as much as the Glock.

Thanks for any and all input, and I look forward to being active on the boards as I begin to explore this new hobby.
 

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You seem to like the shooting sport already. And you feel good with the Glock. I say put in for your permit and buy a glock in 9mm.

The 9mm is fairly inexpensive to shoot, so a weekly visit to the range or two might not set you back to much.With practise you will get better, and feel more comfortable with your pistol.


my first gun was a 9mm berreta. Its been 25 years and all though i do not shoot it as often, i will probably never sell it.I am happy that you are enjoying the shooting sports. It is a hobby that i still enjoy to this day. God knows lots of others had came and went.

You have been bit by the bug, it is a good thing, but it is addicting. Dont worry about putting all your eggs in this basket, for you will most likely buy more guns in the future.

all your choices will be good ones, so as not to sweat it. I can attest to every gun i own and why i need it. The wife will say different, but unlike her jewlery my guns do not loose thier value. I may break even on some, but others will gain in value.

I am glad to here that your expierence at the range and the salesman was a good one. I also worked at ranges and will do the same in making new shooters feel welcome and safe.

My advice will be to go by your gut instinct and just practice safe gun handling. In the event that you do go foward with purchasing a firearm, do get a locked safe for it. On the other hand, if renting a firearm from time to time is a better alternative for you so be it.


owning a firearm is a big responsibilty, and should be taken seriously. Only you know if you are ready to do so. I know people who feel that they should not own a gun. And i respect them for that.

Either way i am glad to here you enjoyed yourself at the range and you see both sides of the coin. And kept an open mind to this wonderful hobby.

Take care and keep safe, Jack
 

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Welcom to the sport of shooting, your local range did a great job in getting you started and expect they will give you a lot of good information. You will also find that many people you meet on the range will give you there opinions why they like a certian pistol. It comes down to what fits you the best and that is somethig only you can decide. I would suggest shooting as many different brands as the range rents to get a better idea of what is available. I shoot 3 or 4 times a month, it use to be profession and now as a habbit/hobby I like it much more. I think you will find pistol shooters are like any other hobby/sport group we like to talk about our past time. I've been in the coperate world for ten years now and quickly discovered people outside the sport aren't comfrotable hearing about your shooting score. So another reason you will find shooters like to chat it up a bit at the range or on forums like this. I would suggest checking out the S&W M&P 45, it's much like the Glock but with better ergonomics in my opinion. Most of all enjoy the sport and shoot what you like not what others tell you to shoot.
 

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If you just want to shoot right now and aren't interested in self defense, I would buy a good .22 semi-auto to practice with. they are inexpensive to shoot and once you get into shooting, you are going to buy one eventually. I would look at the Sig Mosquito, the Ruger MK 3, or the Browning Buckmark.All nice guns, that will hold their value and give you years of joy.
As you are new , I would stay with the 9m/m or maybe a .40 cal. The Glock is a nice gun, so is the Sig- Saur, HK-USP, S&W M&P, CZ-75, and many others. Stay with a name brand gun. The joy of shooting is that if you buy a good gun and keep it any time at all, it goes up in value. You get all that joy and accumulate more value than you could in a CD.
When I started shooting, I hated .45's. Now they are my favorite cal. There is just no better gun than the model 1911, whether made by Colt, Kimber, S&W, Springfield, Etc. The fact that every seious gun company copies it should tell you something.
Sorry I rambled. Just 35 years experience.
 
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