Did you know that there are nearly 400 million guns in the United States? Although this number would make it seem like everyone knows which gun they should buy, the answer isn’t always obvious.
Wondering to yourself “what should I buy at a gun store near me?” We’ve put together a brief guide full of handgun-buying tips to keep in mind when looking to buy a handgun.
Let’s take a look at what you need to consider.
What Do You Plan on Using the Firearm For?
This is one of the most important questions to consider before moving forward. Whether you’re looking for a firearm for self-defense, plinking, or competition shooting will dictate what kind of handgun you should be looking at.
If you’re looking for a firearm strictly for self-defense, then we recommend finding a handgun that is comfortable to shoot, has good ergonomics, and is chambered in a caliber that you are comfortable with. Calibers like 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP are all great choices for self-defense calibers.
If you’re looking for a handgun to take to the range and have some fun with, you should instead find a caliber that you enjoy shooting. Common plinking calibers are .22LR, .22 Magnum, and .380 ACP.
If you’re looking for a handgun to compete with, choose a gun that is comfortable for you to shoot and is chambered in a Major caliber. Common Major calibers used in competition shooting include 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP.
Once you’ve decided on what you’re going to use the handgun for, then you can start narrowing down your choices.
What Is Your Budget?
The next question to consider is how much money you’re willing to spend on a handgun. Handguns can range in price from around $200 all the way up to $2000 or more.
It’s important to set a budget before you start looking at handguns so that you don’t get in over your head. If you’ve never purchased a firearm before, it’s likely in your best interest to stay on the lower end of the price range.
What Size Handgun Do You Want?
Guns come in a variety of sizes, from subcompact to full-size.
The size of the gun that you choose should be based on how you plan on using the gun. If you’re looking for a handgun to carry concealed, then we recommend choosing a subcompact or compact handgun. These handguns are small enough to conceal but still large enough to shoot comfortably.
If you’re looking for a gun to use for home defense, then we recommend choosing a full-size handgun. These are larger and easier to shoot, which is important in a self-defense situation.
What Is Your Preferred Caliber?
As we mentioned before, the caliber of the gun that you choose should be based on how you plan on using the gun. If you’re looking for a gun for self-defense, consider buying a firearm that uses 9mm, .40 S&W, or .45 ACP. These calibers are powerful enough to stop an attacker but not so powerful that they are difficult to control.
If you’re looking for a gun to take to the range, then we recommend choosing a .22LR, .22 Magnum, or .380 ACP. Calibers in these categories are fun to shoot and relatively inexpensive.
What Is Your Preferred Action Type?
Handguns come in a variety of action types including single-action, double-action, and striker-fired.
The action type that you choose should be based on how you plan on using the gun. To elaborate, let’s take a look at the three different action types.
Single-action handguns require you to manually cock the hammer before each shot.
This can be done by either thumbing the hammer back or racking the slide. Single-action handguns are typically more accurate than other action types but can be more difficult to shoot for beginners.
Double-action guns have a hammer that is cocked automatically when the slide is racked. This means that you don’t have to manually cock the hammer before each shot.
Double-action handguns are typically easier to shoot than single-action handguns but can be less accurate.
Striker-fired handguns have a striker that is cocked automatically when the slide is racked.
This means that you don’t have to manually cock the hammer before each shot. Striker-fired handguns are typically easier to shoot than both single-action and double-action handguns but can be less accurate.
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What Is Your Preferred Grip Style?
This is a factor that you should not overlook, as it will go a long way toward how comfortable the gun is to use. Handguns come in a variety of grip styles including straight, thumb rest, and finger groove. The grip style that you choose should be based on how you plan on using the gun.
For example, those who wish to use a gun for self-defense may want to choose a grip style that is easy to hold onto under stress. Those who plan on using the gun for target shooting may want to choose a grip style that is more comfortable and provides a better grip.
So, Which Gun Should I Buy From a Gun Store Near Me?
The answer to this question is contingent upon the above information. As long as you keep these tips in mind, you’ll be able to easily make a decision next time you wonder “what should I get from a gun store near me?”
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