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Posted: 4/28/2003 10:09:38 AM EDT
I'm looking for something very compact, and my requirements are a bit out of the ordinary.  The primary purpose for this pistol is going to be enticing a friend of mine to go shooting for the first time.  She was pretty strongly anti-gun, but I've managed to work her to a more neutral position.  However she is still afraid of them.  I did get her to agree to go shooting with me if I get a "cute" little pistol for her to shoot.

I realise this may sound silly, but I figure one less rabid gun hater is good for all of us.  My aim is to find something that would be manageable for her, and then use that to get her started on a .22lr plinking rifle.  Just show her that there is a fun and non-threatening side to firearms.

So in short, I need something that is:

small - she has very small hands
lightweight - she isn't particularly strong
low recoil - a blowback .380 would probably be too snappy, which won't help me in this
stainless or chrome - explained above
reliable - something that is jamming every 3 rounds is not going to help her feel comfortable with it
affordable - I'd rather not spend an arm and a leg on something that will mainly just gather dust, except when I'm introducing someone to shooting.

I'd prefer a semi-auto, but might consider a revolver.  Caliber doesn't matter as long as it meets the low recoil requirement.  Thanks in advance!
Link Posted: 4/28/2003 10:21:49 AM EDT
If you can find one, get a S&W Model 34 4" 22 lr, round butt revolver ($275-$325). It's a smal "J" frame, has negligible recoil, is accurate (you want her to hit what she's aiming at), cost little to shoot, and will retain its value.

Second thought would be a used S&W 422 semi-auto. I see them all the time for $150. Find an ammo it runs with and you are good to go.

Personally, I'd go with the revolver.

Link Posted: 4/28/2003 10:25:28 AM EDT
i second the S&W Model 34 or any .22LR revolver with a small frame.
Link Posted: 4/28/2003 10:31:20 AM EDT
Ditto the M34. The standard...not Target... 4" version of the Ruger 22/45 if they still make it, and I believe that Taurus is making rimfire revolvers with alloy frames also. Definitely stay with a .22LR.

Good Luck
Link Posted: 4/28/2003 10:47:30 AM EDT
Walther P22T....

not chrome......

Oh well, good guns so I hear.......
Link Posted: 4/28/2003 9:35:51 PM EDT
Ruger MKII?
Link Posted: 4/28/2003 9:43:35 PM EDT
Ruger MII. Meets all your requirements. Many indoor ranges rent them.
Link Posted: 4/29/2003 4:24:09 AM EDT
The Ruger Mark II doesn't meet the small hands requirement. I've taken a number of women shooting, and the more petite in the bunch were not comfortable with the Ruger.

Link Posted: 4/29/2003 5:23:40 AM EDT
Well, if you've got a C&R license, you could pick up one of those $250 Walther/Manuhrin PPs in 32ACP from Centerfire Systems.  It has a small grip frame and the weight of the all steel gun will keep the roar of that 32 to a minimum.  

The other option that was first to my mind is a Kel-Tec P32 also in 32ACP.  This is a very small gun and has the added benefit of coming in a multitude of "cute" colors.  It is extremely lightweight so the 32 roar will be more noticable.  

A couple of other ideas that come to mind are a Ruger SP101 in 22LR, or one of the tiny Beretta 22 (950 & 21).

Good luck!
Link Posted: 4/29/2003 2:11:20 PM EDT
Browning Buckmark Camper.
Link Posted: 5/2/2003 9:36:04 PM EDT
Taurus model 94 or 96 revolver or maybe a PT22. A four inch S&W 422 would fit the bill too. While not too "cute" a Ruger Single Six with a 4 5/8 barrel would work.
Link Posted: 5/3/2003 11:50:24 AM EDT
Ruger Bear-Cat.  

It's what my wife shoots.

I don't know if it comes in stainless.
Link Posted: 5/3/2003 3:26:12 PM EDT
Ruger GP100 .357 loaded with fly fart .38 special target loads.  Nice slimmed down wood grips with fingerless gloves till her hands toughen up.  Then you could shoot the HOT .357mag for your pleasure :D
Link Posted: 5/3/2003 3:35:12 PM EDT
When in doubt, k.i.s.s.  m-34 s&w is the proper tool for this job. If double action is a hurdle, you still have s.a.  just my thoughts.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 8:54:30 AM EDT
I would get one of the all stainless models from Kahr.  They have a little weight to them so they feel like something in your hand, they are extremely reliable (she wont see you having to cleam jams as a good thing), and they are priced well.  I dont think I would go with a .22.  Go with 9mm, woman get a kick out of seeing their target fall apart.

My wife has a Kahr K9 and she's deadly with it.  She makes me so proud!
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 9:18:16 AM EDT
Try a North American Arms "Black Widow".
Oversize rubber grips and good sights make it much more shootable than the other North American .22s.
Get a .22 LR spare cylinder and it is a very mild shooter. (Lots of fun!) With .22 mag hollow points you have an excellent pocket pistol.  Perfect for summer when you are out in shorts and a t shirt.  
After my wife tried mine, she had to have one for herself.
It is much, much more accurate that a Seecamp or any other .25 or .32 auto.
It will run about $200, a little more with a spare cylinder.
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 10:24:29 PM EDT
Sig P225 9mm or Sig P230 .32ACP
Link Posted: 5/12/2003 3:50:34 PM EDT
I 2nd the Kel Tec. My wife wants one because it is cute. At first she thought it was ok with the short grip, then she saw it with the 10 rd mag and loved it. OD green with a chrome slide it what she wants. Maybe a stainless Beretta Tomcat in .32
You could keep and use as a pocket/backup gun, unless she buys it from you.
Link Posted: 5/12/2003 6:09:05 PM EDT
I gotta go with DavidC, 308wood, and ikor. Go with a .22lr.

Link Posted: 5/12/2003 7:20:52 PM EDT
I missed in your list of criteria why you want stainless.  I think the Walther P22 would be perfect.  I shot one a couple weeks ago and the grip is much smaller than my Ruger MKII which is, in turn, much smaller than my Buckmark.  The P22 is also light weight.

The issue I have is, starting a total newbie with a handgun.  You are making the first shooting expirience as challenging as possible by using a pistol.  I'd recommend starting with the rifle.  Rifles are much easier to hit with.  Hitting is fun.  Fun brings the newbie back a second time.  If you have a range where you can do it; tin cans at 30 feet with a 22LR rifle is the ticket to getting a new person hooked.

Link Posted: 5/13/2003 6:34:00 PM EDT
Is a revolver acceptable? If yes then I would suggest one of those Taurus .22 nineshot revolvers in stainless. Easy to shoot, reliable and jams are a non-issue. Besides a revolver is less threatening, looks old fashion, a single action type is just a "John Wayne cowboy gun" no possible way of it being an "Evil Gang-Banger death machine".
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