First Gun Purchase - SemiAuto vs Revolver | Carolina Shooters Club

First Gun Purchase - SemiAuto vs Revolver

Discussion in 'Handguns, Pistol Shooting' started by Br90006, Feb 25, 2020.

  1. Br90006

    Br90006 Registered Member

    Feb 18, 2020
    North Carolina
    I like the concept of the revolver more. Which would be more practical to have as my first and only gun (for a time at least)? Any advantages or disadvantages?
  2. MurphyLong

    MurphyLong sudo Staff Member Lifetime Member Club Subscribed

    Aug 7, 2015
    Eastern, NC
    This is a loaded question, pun intended... It depends on what your plans are. An every day carry pistol? Night stand gun? Something to target shoot with? All of the above? All of this is my personal opinion, so take it with a grain of salt.

    With revolvers, you have the obvious disadvantage of lower capacity, but the advantage of less moving parts. Semiauto gives you higher capacity, and the convenience of spare magazines, as well as the availability of rails for "tacticool" accessories like lights, lasers, and eventually- a Keurig attachment. (Not really, but some people love to throw every possible add-on they can on a gun)

    Then comes the caliber debate, which I'll jump right over and say, all bullets can kill- so find what you're comfortable with. Being your first gun, I wouldn't go jumping at a S&W .460XVR (despite the fact they are all sorts of fun.) Revolvers are available in almost as many calibers as semiauto. .22lr, .22mag, .327, .38spl, .357MAG, 9mm, 45ACP, 45LC, etc...

    Then you have the budget. Sure, you can buy a Taurus .357 Magnum 2" barrel revolver for $250, or a 9mm Hi-Point YEET CANNON for $150, but my personal recommendation is to stay away from them. There are brands that are cheap, brands that are ugly but reliable (looking at you, Ruger) and then there are brands that you're gonna pay for just having a name on it. (Like Kimber- they aren't worth the price for the name.)

    If you want a wheelgun, check out Ruger or Smith and Wesson. They both have great options that won't break the bank, but first you need to know what caliber you want to start with.
    RobertoJ, Wellison and Adam Hewlin like this.
  3. Sank

    Sank Registered Member

    Dec 9, 2019
    High Point, NC
    My two cents, change accepted...

    As said above, your best budget for quality is going to be Ruger and S&W, pretty much in that order.

    I won't skip the caliber choice - just about the best you can do is get 357 Magnum. You can shoot all flavors of 38 Special, most very inexpensively. Then you can load up most any flavor of 357Mag and see what a fast, hard hitting projectile can do.

    As far as hardware goes? My dad has a 6 inch S&W 357Mag, blued, cool, accurate, total fun to shoot. It was inherited from my great uncle, in the used market it would go for $600 plus. I like it, I don't like worrying about keeping blueing beautiful. I have a 40 year old Ruger Security Six also in 357Mag, stainless finish. It is very forgiving in the corrosion department . It's a four inch barrel, I won't carry it, but it goes camping with me, loaded with heavy fast rounds.

    My second revolver, and at this time my favorite.

    So, this is, as I said, my two cents, or, maybe a nickel.

    Hope this helps. BTW, you can not go wrong having a 357 Mag in the house!
  4. Wellison

    Wellison Registered Member

    Feb 1, 2020
    Upstate SC
    My suggestion is buy what you want and can afford to shoot often. You’ll undoubtedly want to buy a different gun come next Christmas, birthday, or Democrat President. If you’re not familiar with semiautos, it’s worth trying to find a gun shop/range that will rent different models for you to try. But don’t let a slick salesman talk you into something you don’t really want. I have plenty of revolvers and semiautos that I enjoy shooting. As long as I do my part, each and every one of them reliably does the job it was intended for. So don’t listen to people that put down revolvers or complain about semiautos and their reliability. As was said above all handgun calibers can punch holes in soft material. Happy shopping!! Show us what you choose or post it for sale if you decide you don’t like it anymore.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  5. Headspace

    Headspace Registered Member

    Oct 30, 2014
    Catawba County
    A revolver is simpler to operate and inherently safer because of the long trigger pull in double action. I agree with a Ruger or Smith And Wesson as choices, you can add Taurus to that, they are very similar to S&W in form and function. Stay with a small or medium frame, easier to shoot and fit your hand, and lighter weight.
  6. carolina sorillo

    carolina sorillo Registered Member

    Jul 17, 2011
    I also agree with everything stated above. A used Ruger or Smith 3"-4" barreled .357 would be an excellent choice for a first handgun. 9mm is the least expensive ammunition but .38Special is not far behind. As stated above you can plink/practice with the Specials and use the Magnums for self defense. If your .357 is cut for moon clips, reloads can be almost as quick as with a semi-auto, with practice.

  7. Phantom

    Phantom Member

    Sep 10, 2007
    Randolph County, NC
    Get what you are comfortable with. Choosing a firearm is a personal decision.
  8. Have gun-will travel

    Have gun-will travel Member

    Oct 17, 2009
    Vance County,NC near Kerr Lake
    I would suggest that you go to your local indoor range that rents guns and try out a few . find several that feels good in your hand and rent the ones you like .Find the one that you shoot well .Pick the one you like the best and go with that one.
    Ebone likes this.
  9. TonyF

    TonyF Registered Member

    Apr 10, 2020
    Lillington, NC
    I did a lot of research and finally chose a Springfield XD45c for my first. I liked it so much I couldn't stop at 1. That was many years ago, still have it.

    Curious what did you end up getting?
  10. gemihur

    gemihur Registered Member

    May 29, 2013
    Ridgelines of Virginia, Roanoke valley
    a wheelgun is a great first step
  11. pikepole20

    pikepole20 Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

    Feb 26, 2011
    Archdale, NC
    It is hard to beat a revolver as a first choice. I still have four, a stainless 686 4" barrel ,Model 66 with a 2 3/4 " barrel, Ruger Redhawk stainless with 5" barrel and an H&R revolver in .22. They will serve you well for a lifetime regardless of whatever else you buy after going down the rabbit hole of gun buying. They hold their value, can fire anything from from target to full house hunting ammo and even snake shot. They would be some of the last I would part with.

    Sent from my SM-N970U using Tapatalk

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