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    LE Caliber

    Initially I was going to get a rifle after having some fun and falling in love with an AK-47...but I am going to get a handgun instead. I need to practice and become proficient for the academy, which rifles will not prepare me for since they are easier to shoot.

    What caliber does your agency use? Also if I get a .45 and become proficient with it, if I have to qualify with a 9mm or a .40 in the academy would it be easier?

    Looking into a Glock 17 or Glock 22....this will be a range gun only. I am 16 and can't get my CCW for another year and a half so no need to get something small like a Glock 27. Also stating the obvious here but yes this gun will be my dad's, not mine.

    Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Indy View Post
    Initially I was going to get a rifle after having some fun and falling in love with an AK-47...but I am going to get a handgun instead. I need to practice and become proficient for the academy, which rifles will not prepare me for since they are easier to shoot.

    What caliber does your agency use? Also if I get a .45 and become proficient with it, if I have to qualify with a 9mm or a .40 in the academy would it be easier?

    Looking into a Glock 17 or Glock 22....this will be a range gun only. I am 16 and can't get my CCW for another year and a half so no need to get something small like a Glock 27. Also stating the obvious here but yes this gun will be my dad's, not mine.

    Thanks.
    You need to focus on staying out of trouble and getting hired first. If you make it to the academy, you'll be taught how to shoot whatever weapon they assign you (unless you're required to bring your own, then you'll be taught how to shoot that one.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Slaughter View Post
    You need to focus on staying out of trouble and getting hired first. If you make it to the academy, you'll be taught how to shoot whatever weapon they assign you (unless you're required to bring your own, then you'll be taught how to shoot that one.)
    I understand that and I am. Just want something to have at the range, and since my dad wants to buy a new gun and is giving me the choice I thought why not get a good one to practice with.

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    If it's only for the range and to learn on, get a .22.

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    Glock 17 or 19.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Slaughter View Post
    If it's only for the range and to learn on, get a .22.
    My dad has made it clear that he wants something bigger than a .22...9mm or bigger only. Thanks for the replies sarge!

    Quote Originally Posted by MinnesnowtaWild View Post
    Glock 17 or 19.
    Thanks, leaning more towards the G17 than anything else.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Indy View Post
    My dad has made it clear that he wants something bigger than a .22...9mm or bigger only.
    Should've said that to begin with. In that case, the G17.

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    Why are you set on glock? Have you guys shot one? Shot anything comparable? What's your budget?

    First, you two should go to the range and rent a variety of handguns.

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    As mentioned, Glock 19 or G17.
    The comments made herein are those solely of author and in no way reflect the opinions of any other person, agency or other entity.

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    Glock holds a majority of the nation's law enforcement contracts; like it or not. My agency issues them... unless you'd rather provide your own 40SW or 45ACP (or 9mm for plainclothes) that is approved.

    I carry the XDM 40 3.8 compact. You really can't go wrong with a Glock though. They are good, sturdy, durable weapons that go bang every time and are nearly cop-proof. They run and run. They're just not for some people though. Like me.
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    I recommend a G17. A S&W M&P 9mm if you feel the need to be different, or appreciate the difference. You could reverse my answer, reverse popularity, and do just as well. Yes, the pistols offered by both entities are very popular in law enforcement circles; no, they are not nearly as popular in competitive shooting circles. But what do they know? ;-)
    Last edited by Erik; 04-16-2012 at 01:00 AM.

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    Indy,

    Get whatever gun fits your hand and whichever caliber you like the most. A 9, 40, and 45 all recoil differently. A .45 does not necessarily have more kick because it's bigger. Just simply learning to shoot SOMETHING is all you need to get a base of skill. Also, if you like Glock, get one, but if it doesn't feel comfortable, don't feel like you NEED to burden yourself with it just because so many departments carry it.

    This all is what an officer told me back when I was first applying and before I had bought my first handgun. I got a lot of "Get a Glock. It's the only perfect gun in the world," from people, but it didn't fit my hand comfortably. So I got a 1911 and later, a Sig 229. I have a 60% chance of carrying a Glock wherever I get hired, but when I go to the range, I want to shoot something that I really like.
    Last edited by GangGreen712; 04-16-2012 at 09:52 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Slaughter View Post
    Should've said that to begin with. In that case, the G17.
    You're right I should have..my apologies. Thanks for the suggestion.

    Quote Originally Posted by jannino View Post
    Why are you set on glock? Have you guys shot one? Shot anything comparable? What's your budget?

    First, you two should go to the range and rent a variety of handguns.
    Glock is the most popular choice, and for a reason. Budget maxes at $800. Though a good Glock will come around $500-$600.

    Quote Originally Posted by Surf View Post
    As mentioned, Glock 19 or G17.
    Thanks for the suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by KenW. View Post
    Glock holds a majority of the nation's law enforcement contracts; like it or not. My agency issues them... unless you'd rather provide your own 40SW or 45ACP (or 9mm for plainclothes) that is approved.

    I carry the XDM 40 3.8 compact. You really can't go wrong with a Glock though. They are good, sturdy, durable weapons that go bang every time and are nearly cop-proof. They run and run. They're just not for some people though. Like me.
    Okay I'll go rent a Glock before I buy, make sure its what I want.

    Quote Originally Posted by Erik View Post
    I recommend a G17. A S&W M&P 9mm if you feel the need to be different, or appreciate the difference. You could reverse my answer, reverse popularity, and do just as well. Yes, the pistols offered by both entities are very popular in law enforcement circles; no, they are not nearly as popular in competitive shooting circles. But what do they know? ;-)
    Thanks Erik!

    Quote Originally Posted by Lawdawg45 View Post
    Given that Glock has over 60% of the LE market, that would be a safe choice, and most every agency I know of in central Indiana uses the .40. The large agencies here will provide you a weapon, so you could buy the subcompact and use it for a BUG or off duty, if you're hired.

    LD
    Thanks, replied to your pm.....

    Quote Originally Posted by GangGreen712 View Post
    Indy,

    Get whatever gun fits your hand and whichever caliber you like the most. A 9, 40, and 45 all recoil differently. A .45 does not necessarily have more kick because it's bigger. Just simply learning to shoot SOMETHING is all you need to get a base of skill. Also, if you like Glock, get one, but if it doesn't feel comfortable, don't feel like you NEED to burden yourself with it just because so many departments carry it.

    This all is what an officer told me back when I was first applying and before I had bought my first handgun. I got a lot of "Get a Glock. It's the only perfect gun in the world," from people, but it didn't fit my hand comfortably. So I got a 1911 and later, a Sig 229. I have a 60% chance of carrying a Glock wherever I get hired, but when I go to the range, I want to shoot something that I really like.
    Okay thank you for the advice!

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    Get a Glock 17, and a .22 conversion for it. 9mm is cheaper to shoot so you will shoot more of it. The .22 conversion will allow you to shoot even more on the same platform. Get some GOOD instruction and then practice, practice practice.

    Happy shooting.
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    I see a lot of threads like this, and people say, "the academy will teach you how to shoot so don't pick up any bad habits." Honestly, I don't think the academy did anything to teach shooting - at least not where/when I went. It really seemed like you got a quick lesson on stance, grip, sight alignment, and trigger pull which generally occurred without weapons and in a seated, classroom environment. The students then got to shoot until they qualified. Those of us that grew up with firearms, as a whole, had little to no trouble. I generally shoot around a 98% (sometimes better, sometimes worse) and can say I've had no hands on instruction in marksmanship over the years.

    I think what was taught, by an employer later and not the academy, were other helpful skills such as holstering, retention, stop-action drills, reloading, moving, and firing from a variety of positions and in a variety of conditions.

    In summary, I don't think shooting will hurt you. There are assumed best ways to run just as there are assumed best ways to shoot, but any kind of running will make you a better runner. Just my opinion - worth little to others but lots to me. Take it for what it's worth.

    To answer your opening question, I prefer a .45 ACP round to actually carry and use as a weapon. When I'm off I carry a .40 S&W round because the gun is more concealable. For the novice, that just wants to shoot paper, cans, and mounds of menacing dirt I'd say get a 9mm. It's cheaper and sufficient for use.

    Edit: The above mentioned academy is a state academy for nearly every LEO in Arkansas. It's not employer-specific, and policies and instruction are generic so that the brightest and best equipped officers alongside the dumbest, poorest officers can both survive and fill a position.
    Last edited by ArkansasFan24; 04-16-2012 at 11:03 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Indy View Post
    I am 16 and can't get my CCW for another year and a half so no need to get something small like a Glock 27. Also stating the obvious here but yes this gun will be my dad's, not mine.
    For a CCW is it not 21? Shoot whatever Dad has. First handgun I shot was my Dad's 1911A1 from WWII.

    If I was you and 16 I would be thinking of joining the Army or Air Force. BTW, do you shoot rifles and shotguns? IMHO, after 25 years, 90% of LEOs are rather poor rifle and shotgun handlers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ArkansasFan24 View Post
    I see a lot of threads like this, and people say, "the academy will teach you how to shoot so don't pick up any bad habits." Honestly, I don't think the academy did anything to teach shooting - at least not where/when I went.

    ...I generally shoot around a 98% (sometimes better, sometimes worse)
    In the 1970s the academies did a good job teaching people how to shoot. Today we do not. Look at the contractors in Afghanistan teaching their police. The Americans do a poor job. The Italians are spot on. Here you have to go to Gunsite, Thunder Mountain, etc to learn how to be a pistolero.

    BTW, what is a 98%? In the old days you did a 294 on a 300 point course and that is 98% too. But almost everyone now is doing hit/miss or go/no go.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Che View Post
    BTW, what is a 98%? In the old days you did a 294 on a 300 point course and that is 98% too. But almost everyone now is doing hit/miss or go/no go.
    At my agency we still do our requalifications on a 300 point system out to the 25 yardline. We also have a course you can shoot just to wear a pin over your badge if you shoot with a high enough percentage and that go out to 50 yards.

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    OK I’ll be the contrarian. I completed the academy with a Glock 21 easily in the top 10%. I thought I could shoot a hand gun well from military training. I shot next to a guy who had spent 12 years in SWAT. I then decide I wanted to shoot better. I found my shooting improved significantly when I bought a Sig 226 in 9mm with a laser grip. Developing a stable single action trigger pull by dry firing with a laser to provide feedback will do more for you than shooting 1000s of rounds at the range. A Sig with a laser grips is more than your budget, but this approach will save you in ammo. To assure safety I dry fire with a training barrel. http://www.blade-tech.com/Training-Barrel-pr-1018.html Wet-fire is necessary to develop recoil control, but if you develop a suitable grip and trigger control to keep the laser on point during dry fire, then recoil control will come easily. The only benefit to waiting for an academy to train you, is to avoid developing bad safety habits that must be unlearned. If you ALWAYS treat every gun as though loaded, point the muzzle in a safe direction, keep finger out of the trigger guard until ready to fire, and be mindful of what is behind/around the target you will have few “training scars” to fix.

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    Modern bullet and propellant technology has made the proverbial 9mm vs .40 vs .45 argument moot. If I had the choice between a .40 and 9mm, I would take the 9mm, have the same performance, and have 2 extra rounds in the mag and less recoil in the gun.
    "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."
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    Disclaimer: My statements are personal opinions, and in no way reflect those of my agency.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Reedo View Post
    Modern bullet and propellant technology has made the proverbial 9mm vs .40 vs .45 argument moot. If I had the choice between a .40 and 9mm, I would take the 9mm, have the same performance, and have 2 extra rounds in the mag and less recoil in the gun.
    That is a good point. Center mass hits put down bad guys. When you hear about a shooting involving 71 rounds fired at the bad guy. It is usually 90% plus misses and the hits were in extremeties.

    I am a big fan of the 9mm too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ERMedic View Post
    At my agency we still do our requalifications on a 300 point system out to the 25 yardline. We also have a course you can shoot just to wear a pin over your badge if you shoot with a high enough percentage and that go out to 50 yards.
    That is GREAT extending the range, far too many people do not know what they can do out there, if you get them on the range at at 50 yards for the first time they are often pleasantly surprised. At a club where I used to be a member the covered firing point was 50 yards, if you wanted to shoot closer you had to bring something to set your gear on, or set it on the ground. So I just shot 50 yards, and started many new shooters out there. People would show up and say "you guys shooting from WAY BACK HERE ?"...more often than not they would just join in at 50 and do quite well. Now and then a few would want to rip off a few mags at 10 yards as fast as they could shoot, then leave.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Che View Post
    In the 1970s the academies did a good job teaching people how to shoot. Today we do not. Look at the contractors in Afghanistan teaching their police. The Americans do a poor job. The Italians are spot on. Here you have to go to Gunsite, Thunder Mountain, etc to learn how to be a pistolero.

    BTW, what is a 98%? In the old days you did a 294 on a 300 point course and that is 98% too. But almost everyone now is doing hit/miss or go/no go.
    Our (Arkansas') qualifying targets are out of 500 points so 10 possible points per round (50 rounds). I have shot 500's. A 492, which seems to be in my mind what I've shot the most of, is a 98.4%. My lowest ever was not that long ago, and I shot a 476 (I think). No clue what was up.
    Last edited by ArkansasFan24; 04-21-2012 at 10:21 PM.

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    Ours are out of 60 rounds, different places I guess.
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    Thanks again everyone, I really appreciate the time and effort you put into your replies...very helpful!

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