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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey XD talkers,

I just graduated from college here in Birmingham and I'm looking to buy my first defensive pistol. I've been shooting my dad's SA Browning Hi-Power 9mm for most of my life, so I'm reasonably familiar with shooting/pistols.

Would a 4" XD make a good first defensive pistol? I've never had the opportunity to fire one although I've heard rants and raves about it from most people I've talked to. The gun feels great in my hand too. Also, the recoil on my father's 9mm was very managable, so should I consider stepping up to a .40 or .357 (don't really know about .45 GAP) or should I stick with 9mm? Should I consider ports on the barrel?

Are there any other weapons I should consider (I've heard alot of good things about the Glock 19, but I've just always had something against the Glock pistols...and they're ugly as sin!).

Thanks!
 

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I anticipate that you'll get numerous, varying opinions on this one - here's mine: Go with the XD Service in .40 S&W and forget about the ports. XD's are a pretty good bargain and if you are like most recent college grads, you aren't exactly rolling in dough.

I come from the old school where, for personal protection, the bigger the bullet the better. I own three 9mm handguns - they're fun to shoot and the ammo is inexpensive. Could they do the job in a personal defense situation? I'm confident that they could, however, I would be more confident with my P220 in the event that I faced such a situation. While the .45GAP has the makings of a fine defensive round, ammo is still kind of pricey and unless you are looking to make the purchase out of extreme paranoia, I would imagine that you would like to put a few rounds through the piece at the range.

While this may sound a little like the wand choosing the wizard from Harry Potter, there is a lot to be said for a gun feeling good in your hand. When I purchased my Gold Cup back in 1984, it felt like a natural extension of my hand. 20 years later, I got the same feeling when I first picked up a XD Service and a Sig P220. Comfort breeds confidence.
 

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Congratulations on deciding to buy your first pistol. I'd say stick with the 9mm and decide if this will be something you'll conceal or something you're going to strictly use for home defense and the rang. If you're not going to carry it concealed I'd say go with the Tactical in 9mm. If you're going to conceal it, I'd say get the subcompact although many people have no problem concealing the service model.

I don't like to get into ballistics arguments, but 9mm won't do any worse than .40 or .45 in a defensive situation. It's a caliber that is cheap to shoot and has many offerings in defensive loads. It has decent velocity and a good defense round will have good expansion. .40 is a good cartridge, but it doesn't move fast enough to maximize it's potential. 10mm takes the cake in that department which is a real .40 pistol cartridge. If there was an XD in 10mm I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

As far as Glocks go, there's nothing wrong with them at all either. It's just personal choice. Some people like the added palm safety of the XD, and some people get a better feel with the XD's grip angle. I own both and both have their pro's and cons. Both are as reliable as you'll find though.
 

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I say go for a XD-9 service or subcompact. 9mm is cheap, soft shooting, and widly available. Being your first gun, you want to be able to shoot it as much as possible, and these factors will help that happen.

Just to let you know, I went with an XD-40 service and compact and love them both. BUT I already had a SIG P226 in 9mm that is wonderful to shoot.
 

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I made my XD-9 Bi-Tone service my first pistol so, yes, it is obviously a brilliant choice! :D Seriously, it is an excellent handgun. I use mine for home defense, range and USPSA competitions. It can do it all and has been 100.00% reliable with over 6000 rounds of mixed ammo through it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I've liked the XD ever since I held it for the first time and I think it'd be a good buy for a first weapon. You're right, I'm definately not rolling in the $$ (working like a madman just to pay for the pistol as is!). And ammo is readily available and cheap! (always a plus!). Heck, I stopped by Walmart today and saw they have boxes of 100 rnds of Winchester 9mm range ammo for $11. I really don't have great pistol form either (a drawback to being self/father taught) so the more time I have on the range the better.

What exactly is the advantage of the stainless steel slide? Less wear? Good looks? Is it worth spending the extra $$ for a shiny slide that reflects light really well?

The pistol would probably be for both concealed carry and home defense (well, apartment defense at the moment). The subcompact just seems so small in my hand. I feel like I'm holding a S&W Sigma Subcompact or something. Service is what I'd probably go for.

ajamesp51, I'd love to come to the range on Saturday. Let me know when and where and I'll try and be there (don't think I have any conflicts). I'm living in an apartment in Homewood right now so any directions to the range from there (or just and address and I'll mapquest it) would be great! I'd love to try out some XD's as well. Would you like me to buy the ammo?

Thanks for everything everyone!
 

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I went shopping for a Glock a few months back, and fell in love with the XD during comparison handling. Now own three, two .40 Tacticals and a .40 Service, purchased slightly used, last evening from a local forum user. I have been a long range IHMSA pistol shooter and convinced myself the Tactical's longer sight radius would be more accurate. (We can't CCW, here anyway). The Tactical's each have a couple thousand rounds through them and today I put several hundred through the 4" Service. Very impressed with it's accuracy and not one malfunction, ever, from any of the three. The seller described the used gun as a "tack driver", and I confirm.

Muzzel velocity versus energy, between a 9mm and a .40 seems quite negligable in a 7 yard defensive situation. 9 ammo is cheaper and XD-9's are more readily available are my neck of the woods. (My opinions)
 

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You can get a full size mag with a grip extension to make the SC grip full size, i Know it has helped some with bigger hands. I like them for the range but not for carry purposes, however get some pearce grip extensions on your standard SC mags and that works perfect for carry and grip, for me anyhow.

I have both a XD40 and a XD9SC I love them both. I have 3 9mm's total and love em, but i carry my service 40 12-14 hours a day with no trouble or worries about whether it will perform in a time of need. If you go to ajames range try any and all you can you may find you like the 45gap best who knows, it is all personal preference. The best thing about an XD is you can't go wrong no matter what you decide.

Welcome and enjoy it when you decide. We all know you will.
 

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Ok here are my two bits.
I own two pistols (just beginning my collection :lol: ) My carry is a Kinber ultra ten II 45 double stack, ten in the mag, and one in the hole, can't go wrong with that. My other and prefered is a XD 357, it absoultly ROCKS!!!!!!!! with the bottlenecked case it holds the same as 40, but I found it shoots flatter then the 40. granted the 357sig cases are expensive, but are usually a couple bucks more then 40.
 

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kabob and ajames,

I'm a little south of Birmingham in Alabaster. I just got my first XD a few months ago as a graduation gift from my brother. It has 600 rounds through it (will have 800 in a couple hours). Just wondering where you guys shoot. Sounds like you have someplace of your own to shoot, ajames, but so far the best place I have found is the range up by the airport. Thanks for any suggestions.
 

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Go with the XD-9 Service, no ports. Its size is ideal for a carry and range gun. With a 9mm you can afford to practice a lot more than a 40 or 357 and I believe proficiency is the key to defensive pistol. Also since 15rd magazines are now available I don't feel you'll be undergunned in a defensive scenario when you're packing Gold Dot 124gr +P or similar ammo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
JHA XD40,

Where in Alabaster do you live? One of my best friends (also just graduated) went to Kingwood high school and his parent's place is right next to the new Publix.

I've yet to go shooting here in Birmingham. Having no weapon makes it tough to hit the range...

Hopefully that'll be remedied soon though! Only problem is that I'm not officially an Alabama resident yet (still packing my TN driver's licence). Working for the county (ATM) means I'll probably have to get an AL licence soon though. If not, I can still purchase the firearm in TN (where my folks live).
 

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Kabob,
Your buddy and I must be just about neighbors. I live in Scottsdale, the subdivision just on the other side of 26 from Publix. I used to live up in your neck of the woods by the Palisades shopping center.

Lately, I've been trying to get to the range about every other week, just wishing I could find someplace closer to go rather than going all the way up to north Birmingham. I know there are people down this way with land where one could shoot, just a matter of finding a landowner and getting to know them well enough to do that, I guess.

Went to the range today, so it will probably be July 6th before I go again, but if you are interested then you are more than welcome to buy a box or two of rounds and put it through my XD to see what you think.
 

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I would go with an XD .40 service. Ammo is cheap and plenitfull and it has alot of stopping power. I have one and i love it. i also have a 9mm service and a .40 tactical. i love them all. i would stay clear of the .45 GAP as ammo is more money and harder to find.
 

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First I would like to say. HOLEY CRAP THAT ROCKS!!!!!!!! I want one that color. Ok I want all of mine that color.

I bought the XD9 SC. I was carrying a Springfield Micro Compact 45. It was ok.

My wife was looking for a gun to carry and we shot every sub and micro we could rent. I shot the center out of a target at 15 feet with the XD.
We bought two XD9's that day, and a Tactical 9 about 7 months later for Club events, and IDPA if I can ever get Sunday's off.

Buy what shoots best for you. I did.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Won't get a chance to see what works best for me until I get a chance to actually shoot a few. Hopefully I'll get to try firing a few soon though. Like I said, the XD felt great in my hand, but my mind could chance when I fire it (hopefully not).
 

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is that red for real? If so where did you get it done??
 

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Here is my range, I will be there on Sat probably the only one wearing a Springfield Armroy shirt. The match starts at 10am your first mathc is free so come out and have some fun. And I will bring most of my xds for you guys to shoot.

http://home.earthlink.net/~hrpwebmaster/index.htm
 
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