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CCW for woman...

Old 11-21-2018, 05:11 AM
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Default CCW for woman...

Have a friend who will be getting a handgun for self defense. And taking a CWP class as soon as she has an open time for a class. She currently has my Shield 9 mm at home.

I'm about 95% sure I'm going to suggest she look at a S&W 38. What really peaks my interest for her is the Bodyguard 38 with Crimson Trace. Anybody have one of the BG38 and have any comments on it compared to a 442, 638 CT, or 642 CT ?
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Old 11-21-2018, 05:16 AM
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I've read on this site about the light weight revolvers having a lot of recoil.
just curious....how does she do with the Shield? Can she rack it and shoot it?
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Old 11-21-2018, 05:19 AM
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638 is a great choice. Gave one to my baby sister for a graduation present from Clemson. It is her EDC.

If she is recoil sensitive, try the Hornady Critical Defense Lite ammo. Typically in stock at ATP.
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Old 11-21-2018, 05:20 AM
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Yes, she can okay. Just not real proficient with the manual of arms on it. I think the Shield is a pretty soft shooter for a small carry gun. I'm just mostly concerned for her with the/an auto if something goes sideways on the first trigger pull. Would like for her to be able to point and just keep pulling the trigger until it fires.
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Old 11-21-2018, 05:44 AM
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Since the 638 is a S&W J-frame like my 442, something to show her if she buys any J-frame:

The ejector rod is screwed into the cylinder. After I fired my 442 a few hundred times, the rod began to back out of the cylinder. It started becoming difficult to swing the cylinder open until I figured out what was wrong and re-tightened the rod. Let this go far enough and the cylinder will jam shut.

The ejector rod threads are left-hand threads. Show her how to periodically check to make sure the rod is screwed into the cylinder completely. I learned to check mine every time I clean the firearm. This advice also applies to S&W K-frames, where I have found the same issue in my Model 15 revolvers.
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Old 11-21-2018, 05:51 AM
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Originally Posted by CUTiger2011 View Post
Yes, she can okay. Just not real proficient with the manual of arms on it. I think the Shield is a pretty soft shooter for a small carry gun. I'm just mostly concerned for her with the/an auto if something goes sideways on the first trigger pull. Would like for her to be able to point and just keep pulling the trigger until it fires.
exact reason I gave my sister a revolver over an auto. She is proficient with both, but does not have time for regular practice. Revolver also much less prone to operating issues due to purse lint. My brother, father, and myself are around her enough to make sure it stays reasonably clean and operational. She’s been carrying it since 2013, and has worked out well.
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Old 11-21-2018, 06:03 AM
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My wife has a S&W Ladysmith J-frame revolver.
its chambered in .38 and .357 Mag. She prefers the .38😀
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Old 11-21-2018, 06:10 AM
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My wife first tried my Glock 19. She couldn't rack the slide. Gave her a J-frame. that little bitch will give your hand a workout. Tried a Beretta 92 and again, didn't like the slide. Ended up finding something she loves........45 Judge. It's too big to carry but it's not safe for her to carry anything cause she doesn't handle pressure well.

Personally I like something small like the Ruger LC9
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Old 11-21-2018, 06:14 AM
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As I had a platform in mind for my wife, when I took her to look & try out, she picked the Browning 1911 in .380, completely 180 degrees from what I thought she would pick.
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Old 11-21-2018, 06:14 AM
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Originally Posted by t500hps View Post
My wife first tried my Glock 19. She couldn't rack the slide. Gave her a J-frame. that little bitch will give your hand a workout. Tried a Beretta 92 and again, didn't like the slide. Ended up finding something she loves........45 Judge. It's too big to carry but it's not safe for her to carry anything cause she doesn't handle pressure well.

Personally I like something small like the Ruger LC9
My wife has a VP9 for the range she's really good with but it's a little big, she had issues with racking the slide on my shield so I bought her the 380 Shield EZ , even the mags are supper easy to load.
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Old 11-21-2018, 06:14 AM
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I know everyone's first instinct when answering this question is to assume a Smith J frame. Honestly, I think this is one of the worst suggestions, and here's why:
1) We assume wives are idiots and cannot learn the manual of arms. (I made this mistake once)
2) Snubbies are difficult to shoot, and really hard to hit a target.
3) The recoil is harsh. I'm sure all you internet tough guys feel differently, but I'm not so insecure about myself that I'm scared to admit the recoil is a bitch.
4) The lighter the snubbie, the harsher the recoil.
5) If it's SA/DA, people will tend to practice SA (because they are better at it) even though in an emergency you will be most likely shooting DA.
6) Look at it from the other direction. If you wanted to increase the odds of someone missing 5 shots and running out of ammo, can you think of anything better than a 5 or 6 shot snubbie?

That said, I get that everything's a compromise, so if you do go with a small snub nosed revolver, I'd have a couple of suggestions:
1) If you can go a little bigger or a little heavier, do it. It will shoot much easier.
2) Get one in DAO, so it's impossible to train with it SA.
3) Show her how much easier the recoil feels if you hold it with a stupidly high hand grip.
4) I'd take a Ruger LCR in 38 or a BG38 above all of the others. If I had to pick one of those 2, the Ruger would edge it out slightly because the trigger doesn't stack like most DA revolvers do. It's difficult to explain, but once you shoot both you'll easily see it.
5) I think you're much better off with a 38 than a 357. Yes I'm fully aware that a 357 can shoot both. Training with 38's and carrying 357's in a snubbie isn't a good idea to me.
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Old 11-21-2018, 06:16 AM
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My wife didn't like trigger or feeling of the grip on the Body guard. She ended up with a p238. And frankly she shoots it as well as anyone at the range with a similar sized barrel. The comparability with pistol will make all the difference. Best advice I can give, is let the woman chose.
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Old 11-21-2018, 06:34 AM
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My wife hates pistols with small grips . Funny innuendo, but the truth when it comes to firearms. She hates the 308 bodyguard, which is my regular carry, and Glock 26, but she likes the Glock 17. The gun she bought for herself is a 357 GP 101. Her carry weapon is a S&W M&P 22. Is it a good choice? well it goes bang, looks scary and might make the other guy think twice about sticking around. On the down side if she manages to score a hit it might just annoy the guy. It's better than nothing.
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Old 11-21-2018, 06:41 AM
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Pic of wife.
S&W 380 is what my wife prefers. She's had a couple different 38's but can't shoot them as well because of the recoil.


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Old 11-21-2018, 06:56 AM
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I got the S&W 308 Airweight with a grip laser for my wife. The recoil is not bad. We lightened the trigger pull a tad. It is hammerless so it doesn't get caught on clothing when concealed or hung on things in a purse. You can't get any simpler than a revolver. It's one you should take a look at.
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Old 11-21-2018, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by coastboater View Post
My wife has a S&W Ladysmith J-frame revolver.
its chambered in .38 and .357 Mag. She prefers the .38��
My Wife has one of these and she carries it mostly. She has her choice of a number of things but she still carries this Lady Smith. She carries with .38 plus P but practices with.38. Never shoots any .357 out of it. She has a Bersa carry in .380 that she operates well too and she qualified on that gun very expertly.. She had access to a Shield in 9mm. Also did well with it. And she has practiced with a Sig P938 and a Seecamp LS32 as well. Id imagine most women can handle about whatever they set their mind to.

As to the debate of revolver vs semi... I don't see much debate. A gun in hand is better than one home in the safe. Most defensive gun uses for civilians rarely last more than a few shots. Someones dead or running. In fact I believe someone is running often by just the realization and sight of a gun. But its hard to say. More shots maybe but any shot quickly enough and accurate enough to score a hit is likely better than nothing. Get her what she wants and seems comfortable with. Let her decide.

As to reliability... this Lady Smith I bought used and it was a jam o matic from start. Timing was way off and the cylinder wouldn't rotate. We sent it to Smith and they about replaced everything in it with new for free. Even though I wasn;t the original owner. And its been flawless ever since. So Revolvers can be just as unreliable as semi auto's for various reasons.
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Old 11-21-2018, 07:15 AM
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I just got a S&W 380EZ. She should give that one a try. Not too small for the hand. She will be able to rack with no issues. Very little recoil. .38 revolver, especially the light weight ones are gonna kick way too much for her.

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Old 11-21-2018, 07:16 AM
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Take a look at the Ruger LCR or LCRX. Lightweight, polymer frame 38's. Can handle +P ammo. Will not jam or malfunction. Most women can't rack the slide on most autos, and can't comprehend that they are a "machine". You need to understand how they work. Revolvers are a no brainer in a panic situation. Go with the Hornady Lite ammo and don't look back.
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Old 11-21-2018, 07:26 AM
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Originally Posted by yarcraft91 View Post
Since the 638 is a S&W J-frame like my 442, something to show her if she buys any J-frame:

The ejector rod is screwed into the cylinder. After I fired my 442 a few hundred times, the rod began to back out of the cylinder. It started becoming difficult to swing the cylinder open until I figured out what was wrong and re-tightened the rod. Let this go far enough and the cylinder will jam shut.

The ejector rod threads are left-hand threads. Show her how to periodically check to make sure the rod is screwed into the cylinder completely. I learned to check mine every time I clean the firearm. This advice also applies to S&W K-frames, where I have found the same issue in my Model 15 revolvers.
Blue loctite will solve this issue.
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Old 11-21-2018, 07:27 AM
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38, .380, 9mm, hell my ex used to carry a full frame 45 in her back and she was only 145lbs!
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