Gun for Spouse & Hello...
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Thread: Gun for Spouse & Hello...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Ohio / Kent
    Posts
    145

    Gun for Spouse & Hello...

    Hello:
    Ok, I'm now a retired technology teacher with a wonderful wife of 38 years.

    I'm a Vietnam Vet and realize both I and my wife are vulnerable despite an alarm security system.

    I have been out of the gun world for awhile... but now looking into a handgun for both of us.

    My issue is that my wife is very petite (4'9") with very small delicate hands.

    She has NEVER fired a gun.... We have gone to gun stores and they are helpful but tries to sell us what they have in stock.

    It may not be the best for her.... so what are your opinions and recommendations.

    I would like it to be a revolver with both light and laser if possible. A semi I'm thinking would be too uncontrolled for each round.

    I never liked plastic but.... Price is a concern... retired teachers, well are limited.... Teaching although noble is not high paying.

    Thanks.... looking forward to your responses.

  2.   
  3. #2

    an Auto Alternative

    Hang, glad to have you here! I had a friend who was a writer who had a very frail wife who liked semi-autos but was too weak to pull the slide back to chamber the first round. They solved it by going to the Beretta Bobcat, a .22 that can load it's first shot by means of a tip up barrel - no strength required for this auto except trigger pull and magazine insertion.

    Currently one is listed on GunsAmerica.com for under $200 (NOT my listing!) so I thought you might like the alternative. My writer friend's wife likes the fact that she can practice with it and isn't scared of the recoil. Also, it was her opinion that revolvers overall had too heavy of a trigger pull.

    You know what they say - better a gun that you'll carry and actually use than a big monster that stays in the nightstand. I hope this helps you and your wife and again, Welcome!

  4. #3
    Welcome HangItFire from Floriduh..

    I know you are on a budget, but I'd ask around to see if there are any NRA instructors close to you.
    Maybe a lesson for your wife, since she is new, would be in order and sometimes instructors will have guns you can try out (If you pay for a lesson)..
    Is there a shooting range near you?? Sometimes they have guns you can rent..
    For your wife, start out with a .22 and work your way up..
    Remember, the lighter the pistol, the harder the recoil and this gets amplified as you go up in caliber..

    Good luck on making your choice..

    My wife wound up with a Sig P238 .380 (not the cheapest choice), but carry was the point of the purchase, however she broke her wrist a few years back and has an issue with pulling a slide. She is not a revolver gal, so it made the best choice although not the cheapest..

    IF you are feeling pressure from your local gun shop to buy what they have, maybe it's time for a nice road trip to another gun shop (maybe with a range and some rental guns)..

    Good luck.

    Gulf Coast, Floriduh
    Sccy is the limit

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Somewhere, Texas, United States
    Posts
    246
    Your are likely to get volumes of advice on your post. So rather than adding to the info you will later have to sift thru, I just want to say welcome, congratulations on your decision and thank you for your service.

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by HangItFire View Post
    Hello:
    Ok, I'm now a retired technology teacher with a wonderful wife of 38 years.

    I'm a Vietnam Vet and realize both I and my wife are vulnerable despite an alarm security system.

    I have been out of the gun world for awhile... but now looking into a handgun for both of us.

    My issue is that my wife is very petite (4'9") with very small delicate hands.

    She has NEVER fired a gun.... We have gone to gun stores and they are helpful but tries to sell us what they have in stock.

    It may not be the best for her.... so what are your opinions and recommendations.

    I would like it to be a revolver with both light and laser if possible. A semi I'm thinking would be too uncontrolled for each round.

    I never liked plastic but.... Price is a concern... retired teachers, well are limited.... Teaching although noble is not high paying.

    Thanks.... looking forward to your responses.
    Welcome!

    There are a lot of choices out there. And as I'm sure you're seen, prices have gone up significantly since you were last in the market. As someone already said, you're going to get a ton of advice on here, and lots of folks are going to recommend their favorite pistols, too. Here's my $0.02 worth:

    1) You may not want to believe it - but you're in the market for at least two firearms. I discourage you from trying to get just one for both of you. The "one size fits all" approach is not a good one to take with pistols.

    2) I recommend shotguns loaded with #00 to #04 buckshot for home defense. Pistols overall are pretty weak in terms of stopping power but make up for it in portability, and thus should be used for protection only when a rifle or shotgun isn't a practical option. If you're more worried about danger in the home vs outside the home...I'd start with a couple of inexpensive pump shotguns such as used Mossberg 500s - maybe a 12 gauge for yourself and a 20 gauge or .410 for your wife.

    3) You can save a LOT of money buying used guns. BUT, I'd make sure to take any used gun to the range and put at least a few hundred rounds through it to make sure it's functioning correctly. (Most of your serious shooters on here will say they won't trust a gun until it's had thousands or even tens of thousands of rounds through it...but come ON, a lot of us don't have that much money to spend on ammo.) Also, try to stick with big names (Smith&Wesson, Ruger, etc) because most of the time if you have a problem on even a used gun, they will fix it at little or no cost.

    4) As was mentioned earlier - take some NRA courses. BOTH of you. She needs the initial instruction. And it wouldn't hurt you to have a refresher on safety, state-specific laws and regulations, etc. (We all need that periodically.)

    5) Also as was mentioned earlier - find ways to try before you buy. Depending on what's around you, this could mean a range that rents firearms (many now do), or talking to friends who own and carry, or maybe joining a gun club.

    Good luck. Be safe. And again, welcome.
    S&W M&P 45; Ruger GP100 .357 Magnum; Charter Arms .38 Undercover
    http://www.usacarry.com/forums/members/phillip-gain-albums-phil-s-photos-picture3828-reciprocity-map-29jun11.JPG

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Ohio / Kent
    Posts
    145
    I appreciate advise so far... I guess I should add a few things..

    My wife will take some instruction and I will too to refresh myself with today's weapons. And both of us will get the CC within a year, hopefully.

    Primary is home defense... and she and me will have different handguns. Cynthia, my wife could not pull back any slide on the semi's which is why the revolvers. I like both but leaning also to a revolver. Something about the weight, balance and look of a revolver seems to leave a big impression.

    We will have a shotgun that so far we both like but also want input... the Remington 887 nitro mag tactical seems like a winner for both of us but I'm not sure.

    Thanks

  8. Lots of good advice here. I think some of the best is to go to a range and try out guns. Some people will like revolvers. There's a lot to recommend the double action revolver for a "house gun." Pretty much all brands work in the same manner, and they're simple to operate, and they can sit for years ready to go with their springs relaxed. But try a few guns. I recall giving my daughter a nice old Colt Police Positive Special, after having the action lightened a bit.

    Years ago, I decided that a lot of the "unpleasantness" of shooting handguns is not truly recoil. If the gun fits your hand and is not terribly violent, your hands and arms soak up the recoil more comfortably than shooting should arms. But have good ear protection. That sudden blast is very startling.

    For a "house gun," you have many choices and can go with whatever is comfortable for you. For a carry gun, you have to think about size, weight and concealability. My wife and I have "his and hers" pump shotguns in the bedroom, but she carries a revolver while I carry a .45 auto.

    Pump shotguns are considered most reliable with all ammo. But for the recoil sensitive and the small of stature, one might consider a "youth model" Remington 100 auto. Get friendly with a few shotgunners and try a few guns. Remember, you can tolerate a slightly short stock a lot more easily than your wife can shoot a stock that's too long.

    The problem of teaching someone who is really small is a challenge. I have a tiny Vietnamese friend. Even small revolvers hardly fit her delicate little hands. If you can find an old Ruger Bearcat .22 revolver, the original aluminum framed Bearcat might be small and light enough for a "starter" gun. A person with just slightly bigger hands could go with J-frame S&W revovlers. I'm picturing a nice little Model 34 "kit gun" .22 and later a Chief's Special or Centennial in .38 Special. Taurus will have similar sized revolvers, possibly at a better price and with great warranty support.

    Get out there and try a few guns and have fun!
    “The police of a State should never be stronger or better armed than the citizenry. An armed citizenry, willing to fight is the foundation of civil freedom.” Heinlein

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    St. Louis County, MO
    Posts
    3,445
    I was like your wife before I started carrying. I am very petite too but I practiced a lot with my hands so I may have stronger hands than your wife. My first gun is a Bersa 380. I've moved on from there and every now and then I still go back to my first gun as my CC. For practice I use a Ruger 22 cal regularly. Beautiful gun. But then...all my babies are beautiful and easy to handle, easy to fire. I baby them too much. Just that the 22 is cheaper to fire than the rest of the alternates I use as my carry...I have been carrying for a good while now but to tell you the truth, (I read into too much fictions I suppose...) I am still scared of a revolver for a CC. I feel safer with a semi.
    "Don't let the door hit ya where the dawg shudda bit ya!"
    G'day and Glock
    GATEWAY SWIFT WING ST. LOUIS

  10. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by HangItFire View Post

    Primary is home defense... and she and me will have different handguns. Cynthia, my wife could not pull back any slide on the semi's which is why the revolvers. I like both but leaning also to a revolver. Something about the weight, balance and look of a revolver seems to leave a big impression.

    We will have a shotgun that so far we both like but also want input... the Remington 887 nitro mag tactical seems like a winner for both of us but I'm not sure.

    Thanks
    It could be argued that the revolver is the superior carry gun. They don't jam or misfeed. They aren't as easy to accidentally discharge. And while they only carry 5-6 shots (except for some oddball 7-9 shot variants), you most likely won't NEED a lot of rounds in a self-defense situation. Me personally - I'm indecisive. I alternate between my Smith and Wesson M&P .45 and my Ruger GP100 .357. My little Charter Arms .38 Undercover is my backup...but becomes my primary when the weather is hot.

    My one comment is that if you or your wife wants to do pocket or purse/satchel carry...then you MUST have a hammerless revolver. Not one with a bobbed hammer, but one with the hammer contained inside the frame. Otherwise, if you try to fire from inside a pocket or purse/satchel, fabric and other assorted crap tends to find its way between the hammer and firing pin. (Don't even bother with semi-autos for pocket carry...can't eject properly if fired in a pocket.)

    For your shotgun - I love my Mossberg 500! It's been in production for years, is very popular with law enforcement, and comes in a variety of bores. There are also about 1,000,000,999 accessories you can buy for it. (I like mine simple - factory stock, and MAYBE adding a laser sight with momentary switch.) You can even get a weaver-rail mounted bayonet, just in case six shots of 12 gauge goodness aren't enough to stop your attacker!

    Anyway...just some more opinions for you.
    S&W M&P 45; Ruger GP100 .357 Magnum; Charter Arms .38 Undercover
    http://www.usacarry.com/forums/members/phillip-gain-albums-phil-s-photos-picture3828-reciprocity-map-29jun11.JPG

  11. #10
    Go out and fondle as many pistols and revolvers as you can. You have gotten some good advice so far.

    How is she trying to rack the slide? I have worked with women before that tilt the gun and grab the slide with thumb and index finger pinching it trying to pull it back. It works much better if keeps it firmly in front of her body and overhand racks with the thumb facing back towards her body. A lot of women have problems but if they start doing the overhand it improves very quickly and they can do it.

    As you was said you are going to probably end up with different guns for each of you. The key is let her pick out hers. A gun is a very personal thing and if it doesn't fit right that person is not going to shoot it well or enjoy it usually resulting in not shooting/practicing with it. Keep in mind that the little pocket carry guns are great but are really snappy. My wife loved the little LCP in her hand (as long as it had a pinky extension) but hated it on the range because of the snap.
    Owner/Instructor
    Dynamic Firearms Instruction
    http://www.dynamicfirearmsinstruction.net

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