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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

First time potential gun owner here. I have been researching a good home protection hand gun and so far it seems the XD .45 ACP fits the bill. I intend to take classes at my local shooting range and try and gain proficiency with the weapon. I wanted to get opinions from experienced shooters and owners of this weapon if you guys think this would be a good fit for me. I have to admit I'm a little worried about having a gun in the house with a three year old about but I figure with a gun safe and keep the ammo in a seprate location would be pretty safe no?

Any information would be much appreciated,

-Eric
 

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IMHO, an XD .45 Service w/ Thumb Safety would be an excellent choice IF you have some experience with semi-auto handguns. Otherwise, a revolver such as a S&W 637 or 638 may be more to your liking.

A locked up gun away from locked up ammo ain't gonna' do you much good if, heaven forbid, you have to defend your family against an intruder. The bad person isn't going to take a "time out" while you get your defense in place.

Good luck with your decision/s. :)
 

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Hello all,

First time potential gun owner here. I have been researching a good home protection hand gun and so far it seems the XD .45 ACP fits the bill. I intend to take classes at my local shooting range and try and gain proficiency with the weapon. I wanted to get opinions from experienced shooters and owners of this weapon if you guys think this would be a good fit for me. I have to admit I'm a little worried about having a gun in the house with a three year old about but I figure with a gun safe and keep the ammo in a seprate location would be pretty safe no?

Any information would be much appreciated,

-Eric
I'll start

the key is practice shooting and failure drills, new shooters sometimes don't practice failures and the semi auto will get you killed if you don't know how to clear a failure. The 45 ACP is a great gun, I know a few people that don't like the 45ACP XD because they say it is too fat but it isn't that much larger then the 40 or the 9.

As for a safe and having your ammo and pistol in separate locations, for a home defense weapon this isn't a good idea. How long will it take you to get the both items to make a working weapon? You may want to look at a small hand gun safe and place it in a night stand. I have my 1911 in a night stand drawer. I have a 3 year old niece and a 1 and 5 year grandson that come to the house all the time. The 5 year old knows how check and see if the weapon is clear. I have taken away the mystery out of guns for the kids (the 3 and 5 year old) they have seen around my house and have gone shooting with me and if they want to see one, we do a clearing drill and they even check the camber and then they can pick it up.

I guess what I'm work my way to is teach the kids about guns and you won't have to worry about them finding one (yours or someone else) some day and not know what to do with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys ok that makes sense the whole idea is home protection in case of an intruder and your right won't do me much good not loaded huh. Well I intend to get training using the xd .45 acp and will spend some time at the range. So you say these automatic pistols can jam eh?

-Eric
 

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I've had mine locked and loaded in a bedside safe throughout my Son's life, starting at a very early age. Followed as he aged by a healthy amount of the rules and regs of owning a gun, and it's operation and of utmost importance SAFETY. An educated child is not going to make an "un-educated" mistake with a firearm, and will have a healthy respect for any and all guns.

I agree with the keeping ammo and gun separate as being a bad idea, God forbid you would ever have to use it. When it comes down to it, you may have just enough time to pull it out and use it. You surely won't have time to run around to different rooms to retrieve gun and ammo, and then put the two together while half asleep. If you're going to have the need for a gun for self defense, it has to be on the ready at all times.

Kind of like keeping your car and the gasoline at opposite ends of the house- if you have to get in the car and go right NOW, you can't very well do it if you have to get the gas from the other end of the house, and then put it in the car.

It's a hard decision to make, all the what if's and trying to be a responsible parent, but it's YOU that makes it safe for your family. No leaving it in the top drawer of the dresser, or on the shelf in the closet. It has to be in a locked safe at all times.

The safes of today can be keyed, push button, and even bio-metric fingerprint readers for almost instant access to your gun in times of need, while keeping them safely locked away from anyone who doesn't need access to them.
 

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Welcome to the forum!

The XD-45 is a good gun to learn on. If you're a first time gun owner, I highly recommend getting some professional training.

If you have kids, a gun safe with room to store the ammo is a MUST!!!

A few thing to remember about guns.

1. Treat every weapon as if it is loaded at all times.

2. Never point it at anything you don't want to see destroyed or dead.

3. Clear your weapon (Drop mag, open slide, inspect chamber and mag well) 3 times before you hand it to someone or begin cleaning.

4. The gun is STILL loaded.

5. If you just got it from the safe, it's loaded.

6. If you just got back from the range, it's loaded.

7. No matter what you do, the weapon is STILL loaded.

Are you getting the point yet?

I hope this helps.

P.S. The gun is still loaded. :wink:
 

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Thanks guys ok that makes sense the whole idea is home protection in case of an intruder and your right won't do me much good not loaded huh. Well I intend to get training using the xd .45 acp and will spend some time at the range. So you say these automatic pistols can jam eh?

-Eric
Any gun can jam or misfire.
 

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My nephews have been around loaded guns their entire lives. By the time they were strong enough to manipulate a slide, they had already shot guns enough to be properly trained on safety. Yes, you heard me right. 5 year olds who are trustworthy with firearms. My nephews used to compete with each other to show who was the safest with guns!!!

Nothing a proud uncle can do but smile and take them shooting more often!:)


I would suggest leaving a loaded mag in the magwell and not racking the slide. Most little kids can't pull the side back by themselves and you can practice grabbing and racking the pistol in your range drills.

Not ideal, but a compromise that would satisfy the safety requirement without locking the pistol up. I have a finger button safe, but I don't think its nearly as fast as racking the slide. I believe the Israelis used to carry with an empty chamber and practiced drawing and racking.

I carry loaded so I don't need flamed on the wisdom of the practice. Just giving options.


If you intend to allow your children to remain uneducated on firearms, then don't have a firearm in the house. No matter what you do, they will find it, and curiosity will kill someone you care about.
 

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Hello all,

First time potential gun owner here. I have been researching a good home protection hand gun and so far it seems the XD .45 ACP fits the bill. I intend to take classes at my local shooting range and try and gain proficiency with the weapon. I wanted to get opinions from experienced shooters and owners of this weapon if you guys think this would be a good fit for me. I have to admit I'm a little worried about having a gun in the house with a three year old about but I figure with a gun safe and keep the ammo in a seprate location would be pretty safe no?

Any information would be much appreciated,

-Eric
First, if you're looking for something for home defense, you're along the right track with an XD. They are very reliable, but I agree with some others that knowing how to properly clear a jam is very important. This is something that is taught by any decent self-defense course.

One thing to keep in mind is that when choosing any firearm for self-defense, it is important to both practice with it, and to thouroughly test with a good self-defense round. A gun won't do you any good unless it's reliable, and typically with an semi-auto pistol, 200 rounds is the break-in time, and a minimum of 200 rounds of self-defense ammunition should be run through to ensure complete reliability. Since you're new at this I'll save you some time on that and recommend the Speer Gold-Dot 230gr JHP. I have yet to hear of anyone having a problem with this round in an XD, and all reports I have heard are 100% reliability for function. Buy from Ammunition To Go, as they sell Speer in 50 round boxes for about the same price you will pay for a 20 round box at your local sporting goods store.

Having a weapon ready for home defense situations requires keeping it loaded, or at the very least with a loaded magazine but empty chamber. For a pistol safe near the nightstand, start with GunVault brand safes. If you can spend a little more, GunVault has their biometric option that opens the safe with nothing more than your fingerprint. This allows you to keep a loaded weapon ready for any situation.

For me, I have a 2 year old and keep it loaded, in my nightstand drawer at night, and in the morning I take it with me downstairs and put it in my safe. Find whatever option works best for you, but if your purpose for getting a handgun is to defend your loved ones, you may as well have a stack of bricks next to your bed if you're going to keep the firearm separated from the ammunition.

Good luck, and happy shooting! Remember, the Second Ammendment is the responsibility of every freedom-loving, law-abiding American, whether they realize it or not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Hey guys lots of great stuff here exactly what I was hoping for. I am fortunate that I have adequate resources to purchase the gun the ammo the training and a proper safe I like the biometric idea and keeping the safe by the bed is a solid idea I get it now best to leave is loaded I like the slide practice idea I think I will use that. Yes I remember from my hunter safety course I took many years ago that you treat any weapon as if it is loaded and the barrel should always be pointed at the ground. Well I plan on taking defense hand gun training that is being offered at my local range then I will do allot of target practice to be honest I hope I will never have to use it but I don't think I could live with myself if I could not come to the defense of my little girl if the time came also I see the XD .45 ACP come in a 4in barrel and a 5 in barrel why the difference? Oh and thanks for the ammo suggestions I will follow your directions

Thanks,
-Eric

BTW Your bottom quote really hits home for me Luteranpreist

I live in Florida where our gun laws here are pretty good
 

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I too did all sorts of research before deciding on my first firearm. My online research lead me toward the XD 45. In addition, a friend of mine highly recommended it warning me that it would "multiply". I'm looking for an XD or XDm 9 for my CCW class next year... but let's not get sidetracked.

XDs in general were reported in this forum and reviews on other sites as having great accuracy, very manageable recoil, and excellent ergonomics. With that, I continued on my search. I looked for a range that had some to rent and fired a number of firearms before settling. After all this I realized that the most comfortable firearm in my hand was the XD45. Although I liked the Sigs a lot, I was able to pick up the XD and shoot it more accurately from the beginning. This is something that many people stressed. Although some guns highly recommended, the only gun that matters to you is the one that YOU can shoot accurately.

I wasn't really ready to buy one just yet but I ran across a deal I couldn't pass up. I found my gun for $440 (this was just before the election... lucky me). I bought the gun knowing that it wouldn't be a bad decision. However, it was at this point that I realized that I needed to be educated. So I read everything I could on safety, etc. Finally, I decided that the best way to learn was from an expert. I, therefore, have signed myself up for the NRA sanctioned courses in "Basic Pistol" and "Home Defense with a Pistol". In the future, I will consider CCW but I am not ready for that responsibility yet.

Anyways, I've given you the long story above just so you don't feel like you're alone. Take your time and do it right. As gsh341 and others have pointed out, the gun is always loaded! I did not even buy ammo until two weeks after I purchased my firearm because I was concerned with my subconscious habit of putting my finger inside the trigger guard when picking up the firearm. I conditioned myself over time to always keep the finger outside the guard and along the frame. I'm not saying that you will have these troubles but I did, so I took the time to fix them. As a friend of mine, an LEO, has said to me many times, "you cannot call bullets back!"

Oh, one last thing. I too used to keep my gun and ammo separate in a safe. However, as I continued to educate myself, I started to realize that most aggressive/aggravated assaults or invasions occur within seconds. This, in effect, renders my firearm ineffective while in a safe away from me. I then decided that it was necessary to keep it by me in a quick access safe by the bed. Trust me, my friends argued and argued with me about keeping my gun in my far away safe but it took some more self-realization for me to understand what they were really talking about.

Sorry for being so long winded but it seems that we've traveled similar paths.
 

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Hey guys lots of great stuff here exactly what I was hoping for. I am fortunate that I have adequate resources to purchase the gun the ammo the training and a proper safe I like the biometric idea and keeping the safe by the bed is a solid idea I get it now best to leave is loaded I like the slide practice idea I think I will use that. Yes I remember from my hunter safety course I took many years ago that you treat any weapon as if it is loaded and the barrel should always be pointed at the ground. Well I plan on taking defense hand gun training that is being offered at my local range then I will do allot of target practice to be honest I hope I will never have to use it but I don't think I could live with myself if I could not come to the defense of my little girl if the time came also I see the XD .45 ACP come in a 4in barrel and a 5 in barrel why the difference? Oh and thanks for the ammo suggestions I will follow your directions

Thanks,
-Eric

I live in Florida where our gun laws here are pretty good
The differences in the length of barrel is more about convenience and personal preference. The shorter barrel is easier for me to carry because it doesn't stick down below my jacket.

The longer barrel has better sight radius so its easier to shoot accurately. Longer distance between sights means less angular error.

If you plan to carry, and are a big guy like me, the 4" is easier.
 

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Not much difference in the 4 and 5 inch barrel. 5 inch would be better if you are target shooting (longer sight length) and the 4 inch would be better for concealed carry if you decide to go that route.
 

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gtiguy,

There's more than a ton of good advice and knowledge in this thread. As much as we love our XD's, 1911's, Hi Powers, etc., you might want to think about a nice little lightweight revolver for your first handgun. Before you make any decision purchase, I really think you should look at something like a S&W 637 or 638.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well I doing my best to educate myself before taking the plunge. My next step it to go to the range and actually handle an XD and others to see if what I have researched matches up. Then I'll buy. So is it good to buy online or best to deal with a local outfit to make my purchase when the time comes? Yeah gun prices really have gone sky high since the election LOL. My concern is more the economy as things get worse people get desperate and home invasions go up and I can't afford to leave my family at this point unprotected. Also my buddy shoots and says it can be pretty fun at the range so I guess I'm find out for myself. BTW I am a big guy 5'11 250lbs

-Eric
 

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With the 5" tactical, as a first-time shooter you will experience slightly less felt recoil, as the added weight up front will help with muzzle flip. Also, the longer the sight radius, the more likely you are to maintain a consistent sight picture. The shorter the sight radius, the more disciplined you must be in maintaining good accuracy.

As for which firearm to choose for a first-time buyer, my advice is to get to a range that rents firearms. Hopefully the range you find will keep their firearms maintained, as some don't. Try several different models/manufacturers and find which one works best for you. It does no good to own a weapon you aren't comfortable shooting.

As for the recommendation of a revolver, the recoil of a revolver is very different from a semi-auto. With a revolver there is no recoil spring to absorb the recoil, so the recoil is much sharper than with a semi-auto. Some first-time shooters may find the recoil of a revolver uncomfortable. The advantage of a revolver is that there are fewer moving parts and they almost never malfunction.

I hope the information you find here is helpful in selecting your first firearm. As a warning, firearm ownership is addicting, be prepared to buy more!
 

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Welcome to the forum!

The XD-45 is a good gun to learn on. If you're a first time gun owner, I highly recommend getting some professional training.

If you have kids, a gun safe with room to store the ammo is a MUST!!!

A few thing to remember about guns.

1. Treat every weapon as if it is loaded at all times.

2. Never point it at anything you don't want to see destroyed or dead.

3. Clear your weapon (Drop mag, open slide, inspect chamber and mag well) 3 times before you hand it to someone or begin cleaning.

4. The gun is STILL loaded.

5. If you just got it from the safe, it's loaded.

6. If you just got back from the range, it's loaded.

7. No matter what you do, the weapon is STILL loaded.

Are you getting the point yet?

I hope this helps.

P.S. The gun is still loaded. :wink:
You left one out!;)
Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire.
 

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Eric, thanks for the compliment! The quote, "Minnesota, the state where nothing is allowed" is plagiarized from Joe Soucheray's show, Garage Logic. It's a local Minnesota talk radio show, garagelogic.com.

Minnesota's gun laws actually are pretty lenient compared to other parts of the country. However, they do require permit to purchase for tactical weapons and handguns if you don't have a permit to carry. Getting a permit is a little pricey. It requires a training course, and the course and license fee total up to $200. Much higher than the $25 I had to pay in Indiana.
 
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