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Discussion Starter #1
I am a recent college graduate and am looking to start a career in law enforcment. The hiring process is so long and drawn out I have to wait about 6 months for the academy to start. I have led a sheltered life and have not had the opportunity to shoot many guns. I am wanting to get a handgun (and lessons) to help myself get ahead of the game before the academy begins. So, to get to my point I have been researching all different types of handguns and have determined I want an SA (I also give credit to this great forum). I am trying to determine whether or not to get a 9mm or a 40. My idea was to get the 40 and then get the 9 conversion barrel, so I can start out small and learn and then be able to move up, and was wondering if someone could help me with my decision making. I was also wondering, going into law enforcement, given the option I could carry my own gun which would be better the service or tactical modal? Thanks for your time!!

P.S. anyone know how reliable the conversion barrels are?
 

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I recommend the 40 then get the conversion barrel.

Honestly, the 40 cal service model was my first gun ever, and I had no problem shooting with it accurately.

If you want to take something to the field, I still recommend the service model, just because it is lighter than the tactical.

plus it's sexier :)

-my 2 cents
 

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Definately go with the .40. Alot of departments are or are just starting to convert to the .40 round. So if your given the option to use your own, you will be ok. I would also recommend the service model. It's easier to rapid draw. The tactical is good for swat where you would actually have it unholstered before entry. The extra inch can make it harder getting on sight quickly in a duress situation. Do get the conversion barrel though. Ammo is a few bucks cheaper. Of course if the department supplies it then it really doesn't matter.
 

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You may want to see what the current issue weapon is for the department you are interested in. They may all be using Glocks or Sigs or.......? See what caliber they are using too. If there isn't a set brand or caliber, then you will have more freedom to choose what you like.
I would get the 4" service model in the appropriate caliber. They don't call it "Service" for nothing. :D
Get some private instruction also, it will be a big help.
Hang in there, you will make it! :D
 

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The first step would be to find out what guns are on the approved list for the agency you are attempting to hire onto. If you have limited exposure to handguns then practice will be of utmost importance to you and practicing with the gun you will carry on duty will be the way to go.

If the XD is approved by your department then get the XD40 Service. The 9mm conversion barrel is a great idea but once again if you will be carrying .40 ammo on duty you should practice with it. Remember as a LEO your life will depend on your ability to use this firearm. If you were buying a gun for fun or competition it would not be so important that you become intimately familiar with your weapon but you aren't you're buying a gun to use to defend your life or somone else's.

If the department approves/issues Glocks or Sigs buy one of those. I know the grip angle on Glocks is different then XDs so if you buy and practice with an XD and then have to qaulify with a Glock at the Academy you may have problems.

The XD is a great pistol and if you had more experience with handguns I would say it doesn't really make much of a difference you could probably shoot anything but you are in a special situation where you are going to have to develop handgun skills in a short period of time and that time will be best spent with the gun you will be carrying.

Good Luck and I hope you get accepted, it's a long arduous process (it really needs to be) just to get to the academy and then you have to make it through that. Just remember hard work, focus and perserverance. Hang in there.
 

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mpholic said:
The first step would be to find out what guns are on the approved list for the agency you are attempting to hire onto. If you have limited exposure to handguns then practice will be of utmost importance to you and practicing with the gun you will carry on duty will be the way to go.

If the XD is approved by your department then get the XD40 Service. The 9mm conversion barrel is a great idea but once again if you will be carrying .40 ammo on duty you should practice with it. Remember as a LEO your life will depend on your ability to use this firearm. If you were buying a gun for fun or competition it would not be so important that you become intimately familiar with your weapon but you aren't you're buying a gun to use to defend your life or somone else's.

If the department approves/issues Glocks or Sigs buy one of those. I know the grip angle on Glocks is different then XDs so if you buy and practice with an XD and then have to qaulify with a Glock at the Academy you may have problems.

The XD is a great pistol and if you had more experience with handguns I would say it doesn't really make much of a difference you could probably shoot anything but you are in a special situation where you are going to have to develop handgun skills in a short period of time and that time will be best spent with the gun you will be carrying.

Good Luck and I hope you get accepted, it's a long arduous process (it really needs to be) just to get to the academy and then you have to make it through that. Just remember hard work, focus and perserverance. Hang in there.

Ditto! :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the replies guys, the more I am on this site the more excited about gettiong an XD, but I do have another question. Should I nights sites for the gun and if so why? Thanks again
 

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yes you should get night sights--something like 80% of all shootings take place in low light conditions. I also recommend the service .40 plus conversion barrel. If you want to learn how to shoot well quickly, you might also want to think about picking up a .22 target pistol, as starting off with a large caliber often teaches one the bad habit of flinching. Put a few hundred rounds through a .22, get the good habits going, then move up to the 9mm. Get comfy, then on up to .40. Hopefully you'll have avoided any development of a flinch, and will have developed good trigger control. Also, your ammo costs will start off low, so you can shoot a lot very cheaply.

I started with the .40 as my first pistol. I developed a pretty good flinch, and spent a lot of $$$ in ammo working it out. I'm at over 2000 rounds on my XD, figuring $17 per 100 (most has been WWB, including tax in that number), I've spent $340 (prolly more, actually), and the first few rounds at the range are still flinchy every time.

Great choice--on the weapon and the career. I'm not a LEO, but still wish I had done it before I got married (so my wife wouldn't have had a say :) ). Shoot safe, shoot well and welcome.
 

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I'm not sure what to tell you about the flinch, maybe you can find an instructor that has experience teaching handgun skills to military or LE personnel.

Flinching is a problem that bothers some people and not others, if you are apprehensive about firing a handgun that might predispose you to flinching. If you are eager to fire one and fully expect the recoil but not fearful of it I don't it will be an issue. Try a lot of dry firing (whatever gun you buy make sure dry firing won't damage the gun, striker fired guns are OK to dry fire) before you actually shoot live ammo.

If you're interested in training without an instructor try and find a book or video on Marine Corps marksmanship training. Most of what you will find is for the rifle but keep looking and you will find pistol training.

I was never bothered by flinching (at least I don't remeber it) probably because I have been shooting for almost 40 years, I was lucky enough to grow up in the country and started at a very young age. I spent most of my free time hunting or just plinking in the back acres. I spent 10 years in the Marines and qualified as an expert in both rifle and pistol. I am still involved almost on a daily basis with handguns (I have drifted away from rifles) on the other hand it has taken me over 25 years to garner shooting interest in my wife. Flinching was and is a problem for her, she has no problem with .22s but does not care for centerfire calibers, not even 9mm. She still could take it or leave it and it shows in her proficiency. All of my boys are naturals and took to guns very quickly. I started them out on a .22LR as suggested above but I knew I was in no rush to make experts out of them.

I say all this to make a point, you have to have a desire to improve and you have to enjoy practicing or it will become a chore and proficiency will be longer coming. Some military personnel and LEOs do not like practicing and do it only when mandated which shows in their qualification scores. This seems so foreign to me, but to each his own.
 

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instead of bump, try starting another thread on your night sight question. You will get more responses that way. :)

Good luck.
 
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