Which pistols etc should I select to shoot at the range?

If you want to have fun shooting with less recoil @ the shooting range....Standard .22
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If you want to have fun shooting with less recoil @ the shooting range....Standard .22
i was going to make a separate post about my new ruger mark4. my only mod to one in photo was replacing the oem plastic grips with hogue rubber grips.

i have recently put 2000 rounds total through my new mark4 and older ruger sr22 over three weeks outdoors. 1500 of cci minimag and blazer, 250 of aguila super and 250 of federal brown box. no cleaning of either pistol.

cci ammo is king. aguila and federal used to be fine but apparently never recovered from the great flu.

ruger sr22 is clearly #1. it never hiccuped, except a few successful restrikes on federal. consistently & easily was 1 liter soda bottle accurate at 30’. handy enough to be a ccw in a pancake holster. easy mags to load. a perfect goldilocks, out-of-the-box, unmodified 22lr pistol.

ruger mark4. i want to like it more. iconic. pencil barrel version is perfectly balanced (i tried handling the bull- and lite- barrels). easy to fieldstrip, as is the sr22. but, many hiccups with (lousy) aguila and federal ammo that didn’t bother the sr22. at the last session, being dirty, it even had hiccups with cci minimags. simply wasn’t as consistently accurate as the sr22, which became annoying regardless of how hard i tried to improve. mark4 mags really need a loading device. too big and heavy to ccw. i bet that, with its many available aftermarket modifications to buy, a mark4 can be dialed-in wonderfully to work well, but out-of-the-box a stock sr22 is way better.
Congratulations on your journey into firearms use and possibly ownership. It's a gateway to a lot of other liberty minded behaviors and topics. For me it definitely was decades ago. I am very passionate about the topic, and the 2nd Amendment. It incorporates liberty, history, mechanical stuff, independence, safety, personal autonomy, and so much more. I think we could cure a lot of ailments in society if more folks got involved at earlier ages, and gun safety was taught to youth as it was 1/2 century ago.

The safety advice and also about starting with a .22LR and getting training was sound. Develop strong safety and fundamental skills and you can graduate up to larger calibers. Enjoy!
I'll put as many details as I can since I can't reply as frequently to answer many questions.. I would for sure be considered a first-time shooter. Never been to a range. Always wanted to shoot. Never shot actual firearms before.. May have thought I was cool handling and shooting Beretta 92F or M9 "EBay Plastic" one in my youth.. being able to insert a magazine and rack slide back and forth to shoot something that couldn't knock over a half full soda can (? 6mm plastic BB) in my youth and much to my young and stupid days.... so, again, no experience shooting a firearm. Would say I'm comfortable with the feel of one in the hand.

Ok so "What is this all about then." Okay... It seems like I have the opportunity to go to the range in Bourbonnais, Illinois sometime before we kick off our weekend outing starting in Manteno Illinois. I probably have enough money to do *some* shooting at the range. Right On Target is the name of the place and it looks like they have attractive rates.. I wonder if I can get away with shooting for an hour or maybe even two.. with about $50 to $100? How does the price of ammo look... https://www.rightontarget233.com/rental-guns/?categories=38

So, setting up that context there, without spending all my money and I need to see how that will go and what they want for fees, they seem reasonable.. I am thinking of getting there when they open and do some shooting! Time is on my side. Hopefully I can swing some shooting time with my budget.

Which brings me to the point of this thread, and here we go.. which gun or guns should I select?

I view this as almost a "test my knowledge" so I can select what I will enjoy the most (and not waste money on ammo, even if they do have some "any gun" option.) My first thought was a Glock 19. I became confused when I saw they still have a Glock 17 available. I was never clear on the differences between a Glock 17 and a Glock 19. 9mm or 9x19 of course. They seem to list both as a Gen5; I suppose as long as they are the regular ones and not "Slimline." (I'm in New Jersey and under no circumstances have any knowledge of firearms beyond what I read here, see on YouTube, and that's about it. I won't even dare say see in movies. I take an interest in things, and I learn. So perhaps do or should we all..)

I do not think I would be interested in shooting a .40 (.40S&W I am not aware of other. 40 I think this would not be an enjoyable gun to shoot.)

Again, first time at the range.

If they charge "by the gun" and I get "two".. maybe the second one a .45? We all know what comes to mind.. a 1911? I've held a Colt 1991 "Government Series 70" in the hand, but never fired it. Which manufacturer do you feel makes the best 1911?

I get muddy and my knowledge falls off when you reference other makes. H&K, Smith and Wesson (I think I've referenced all semiautomatics; not sure I want to shoot a revolver, if they even have any;) Kahr, Kimber, Taurus... whatever else they have, if they even have a Beretta (The Scarface gun!!....) Ruger is one I'm not sure I'd want to handle for personal reasons. These all blur together and I don't know which is good, which one I should select.. it's not like I'm going to shoot 20 guns in an hour....

If they have rifle available and I believe they do, I'm wondering what the best .223 is as I thank @Astro14 for walking me through the difference between .223 and .556 and that .223 will work in a .556 and .556 is a little more powerful than .223 so for me I'd like .223 to help with shot placement. I like to think I'd be a good shot...

....which, again, technique. Having never shot...... but read about it...... I'd probably focus on the front sight, try pulling trigger at a slow to medium speed, and do my darndest to bot jerk the gun at the last moment of trigger pull. Youtube seems to think focusing on the front sight is the key to key-holing shots. I'm open to any and all suggestions. Maybe I'll keep that moving target if it doesn't look terrible lol...

"What kind of gun would I like, what would be too much gun" Well I am 6ft tall and about 240lbs and getting in some push-ups so I can handle a weapon decently if this range thing actually happens. If it won't take ALL my money.. gotta have money for gas and HPL. (That's what next weekend is.. Gas, shooting maybe, and HPL. And the board. And going to the races. 4 out of 5 of those usually don't happen.) I'm probably no slouch but I'm probably very far from experts. I've never shot but I'm not afraid of weapons and what I mean by that is that I know how to load one up (you pull the slide back after the magazine goes in.. your weapon is then "hot." Range etiquette says keep your finger out of the trigger guard. Obey all range rules. That is what I mean by that) and I actually think I will have only a few "bad" shots, which is if the weapon surprises me so much that I wasn't ready for it (hold it a little tighter? Something like that) and I think this could be an awesome thing.

Hoping it will all come in under $100 because if it does then I can.

So. What guns should I select?
Alternate title: What guns would YOU select or recommend? And why?

I recommend first signing up to an indoor shooting range, take the safety classes, and then start with say a Ruger Mark XX series in .22 Long Rifle cartridge pistol.

I taught my children and grandboys with a progression of arms starting with a .22 auto pistol, then we graduated up to .38 special revolvers, then .357 Magnum revolvers, and then the 0.40 caliber S&W semi-auto. (The youngest grandboy of 14 is an expert with the .357 Magnum revolver and the 0.40 caliber S&W semi-auto; shoots groups better than Grampi).

The most popular caliber for the whole family, including the wife and daughter, is the Smith and Wesson EZ in .380 ACP and the Ruger LCP in .380 ACP (the latter is great for concealed carry).

BTW, I recently purchased an ArmsCor .38 special revolver and just returned from shooting it at the range. It is a no-frills revolver but very accurate and the trigger and hammer mechanisms are really smooth. It's generally under $225.00. Just sayin'.
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As a new shooter who wants to go to a range, I agree 22lr is the way to start. Get one that is proven and you will never outgrow. Any of the Mark IV Rugers. 9 mm ammo goes at about 25 cents a round. It will cost you a fortune to become proficient, A Mark IV Ruger is a target gun at its core. If you can't hit the target well, it won't be the fault of the gun.
i’m genuinely curious: why recommend a ruger mark4 target pistol over a ruger sr22 or s&w mp22 compact or keltec P17 or glock 44 or similar general-use 22lr pistol that is closer to being a carry pistol in a larger caliber?

the latter general-use pistols are accurate, just as any, with practice. they are handy enough to be carried, if one only needs, or decides to stop one’s pistol journey at, 22lr. they run just fine out of the box. they fill a variety of roles well enough. they are a smooth transition to handling their larger centerfire cousins.

ages ago, the ruger mark series were the only 22lr game in town. indeed, i fired my first pistol shots out of one at wayward pine cones as a young lad. if one only wants a target pistol, and is willing to fine-tune it with aftermarket parts, a ruger mark4 or 22/45 is a nice choice, but otherwise better to spend almost half the money to get a more practical 22lr goldilocks pistol.
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Congratulations OP. Keep it up. Proficiency with firearms is something I believe most people should achieve.

I like MolaKules recommendation of a Mark (or a Browning Buckmark)
Many people find them very easy to get good shot placement with. I am one of them. I love Ruger firearms, but not much after they started the SR line has appealed to me. I tried an SR9 and an SR22. I wasn't very good with the 50 rounds through the 9, nor the several hundred through the .22. And I WANTED to like the .22

Both were rentals.

OTOH, if life as we know it drastically changed 5 minutes from now, I'd clean and lube up both my Mark IV and one of my 10-22's and hit the highway. I'd take all of my guns and ammo, but in a hoof it situation, no doubt both of those would NOT be left in the truck when I either ran out of road or ran out of gas. I'm kinda medium old and kinda gimpy, and while I'd much rather tote my 92 and a 9mm carbine, I can't really tote nearly as much 9mm as I can .22lr.

Oh, I'm toting my 92 as far as I can, it's my baby. But probably only 250 rds of ammo would go into the pack. There would be several thousand rounds of .22
I could kill food sized critters from squirrels to whitetails with a .22

Yeah Anal Retentive People Who Read What I Just Wrote, I know it's illegal to shoot a deer with a .22lr - I'm talking about some Walking Dead scenario here. I also know for a fact that a .22lr is enough to do the job. I've done it on a couple of "injured by car" deer. And my ex bil is a scumbag poacher...... who almost exclusively used a 10-22

My suggestion is to now buy a .22 revolver
You can buy a brand new Rough Rider revolver for about 140$ shipped to a FFL in your state from Palmetto State Armory BUT
I'd go with a Ruger Wrangler for about $200 shipped from the same place. Shop around on FFL transfers. Don't pay more than 50$, I can do it here for 25$ in quite a few places.

When you buy that .22 revolver, toss in a thousand rounds of whatever PSA has on sale. You can probably get it local for cheap, but I THINK (double check me here) that PSA will ship it in the same box for the same price.

Go shoot that thousandish rounds.

Then find something you like in whatever flavor you like and use ammoseek . Com to buy a ton of rounds and get good with that. 9mm is good to excellent, depending on the rounds used. .380 is ok to good with good ammo, even those .22 revolvers loaded up with mini mags or something else spicy would work with good shot placement on bad guy. .357 is great, they make that concealable nowadays, and you can shoot .38sp in any .357
.40 is also good, especially with the right ammo. It's not a ton better than 9mm, and isn't quite as comfy to shoot so I don't usually recommend that one - personally. Fine guns exist, as does excellent ammo, but the capacity and 'uncomfortablity to shoot' trade-off with .9mm took it out of the running with me a long time ago.

Then buy a 10-22 for cheap plinking (that's a very nice little autoloading rifle) and THEN if you want something like an AR (after you've plinked up a couple hundred bucks in .22) go for it.

Most shooters in the US started with .22

Heck, I still love shooting .22

When you want to get serious, ask questions here. People who answer with "that gun sucks a (Sig, Glock, Beretta, Canik, or whatever) is what you really should buy," are not the people you want to listen to. Each gun has it's pros and cons. Renting is a GREAT way to figure out what fits you. Cruise youtube to see what ammo is pretty good. There are a half dozen people on YouTube who do pretty decent ammo tests, and as many more who are annoying know it all jackwagons who do testing but with a less pleasant attitude. My 2 personal favorites are Paul Harrell and Tools n Targets. I miss tnoutdoors9, but he kinda dropped out of the game.

That being said, do not jump on the Hi Point wagon. They mostly suck (but they DO work)
while usefully discussing 22lr firearms, please also consider the ammunition. i shoot alot of rimfire, mostly 22lr. it seems to me that 22lr quality took a hit from the wuhan flu. i’m a frugal guy but now i only buy cci rimfire ammo, aguila in a pinch. in the past six weeks i’ve shot 5000+ various 22lr rounds (550 yesterday alone): cci (minimag, standard, blazer), federal, remington, winchester, herters, aguila, armscor, norma; in a ruger mark4, sr22, wrangler, lcr. cci is absolutely consistently the most reliable, which is especially necessary in semiauto pistols. frugality isn’t worth frustration, pay a bit extra for cci.
You can always go with the Magnum Research DE 50AE. The AE means "average and easy" lol. Don't take that advice. Don't get one, especially the 44/50 unless your hunting or being hunted by Aliens,T-Rex 🦖 or Megalodon 🦈.


.22-browning buckmark/Beretta u22 neos
380/9- Sig365, HK VP9SK,Glock43x,CzP10s
anything in small revolver especially.22/38sp

Learned from a GySgt/Trooper. Safety is the best rule,and the #1 safety is in your cranium. Enjoy,relax, and give us the story.
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