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Posted: 7/20/2008 12:34:51 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/20/2008 12:36:49 PM EDT by satterwc]
Let me preface this post with the following: I am quite inexperienced with handguns in general. I have shot a .32, .45 and a .44 Mag. Never more than about 20 rounds with any of them.

I just got back from the range and rented a G19 and a G26 to try to get the feel for them. I'm in process of CCW licensing and wanted to see which seems to be a better fit.

I went in expecting to shoot the G19 more accurately due to the weight and length. I figured the G26 would be more uncomfortable/less natural.

I was wrong on all counts.

I've since looked at stances and grips since I got home and found that I was basically shooting in a weaver stance. My grip was slightly out of alignment, but not horrible.

Here's the thing.. I was shooting at 15 yards. I put 20 rounds through each gun (alternating every 5 rounds so my confidence/nerves should stay balanced) and I was at least on the paper with all of them, but I was consistently low, and usually right with the G19. Typically 5-7" radius out. Pretty bad. The G26 on the other hand were all in the dark 5" radius and surrounding the center (not misaligned left/right or top/bottom).

When I talked to three of the range masters that were working in the showroom they all said they shoot their ccw better than their bigger guns. This made me feel a little less crazy, but what's the deal?

Thanks for any advice, flames, encouragement, or other feedback you have to offer.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 12:54:06 PM EDT
Not all firearms fit everyone.... I don't care what your shooting. It could be the best made pistol in the world. But if it doesen't fit the person it won't work fo you.

Try a ton of diffrent brands and models. Don't get stuck on a brand or model just because they look cool. Try to find something that works for you and then decide what color you want.

The worst thing you can do is buy something that dosen't work for you. Then it will end up locked up collecting dust instead of on your belt.

And remember one firearm will not do everything great. Just means u will have to get more..

Link Posted: 7/20/2008 1:08:53 PM EDT
it's not really stunning.

as already mentioned some people just shoot some guns better than others.

and honestly everyone i've known who has shot a 26 was amazed at how well they shot it.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 2:03:26 PM EDT
The subcompact glocks are often mechanical more accurate then some of larger models.

The double recoil spring system is often credited for this.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 2:05:39 PM EDT
I shoot my G26 really well
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 2:24:38 PM EDT
Have you considered checking to see if the place where you rented the pistols has a CCW course/class? You're only starting out--taking the time to learn from a GOOD teacher will help you avoid creating bad habits (pity the armchair "expert" who has to unlearn 20yrs of doing it wrong.)

Some folks fell the mini-Glocks have a stiffer barrel, which contributes to better accuracy. As was said--what matters is how YOU shoot them.

I'd recommend renting a .22LR pistol or revolver next time and maybe a course to learn the basics--or a friend who is a good teacher. Good shooters aren't always good teachers--FWIW.

Once you find a .22LR you like--buy one practice. That being said--if you want to buy a 9mmas your first pistol--nothing wrong with that idea, either. Try several, tho' before taking the plunge. The only downside is that sometimes, as you learn & grow, you change your mind about the pistol--so you buy another.....

Then another....

And another... As someone said--each one is a tool--no one is perfect for every job--so you fill the "tool box" and another "gun nut" is born. Welcome!

Lastly--I shoot my SIGs way better than my Glocks--they fit my hand better. But I like the Glocks, so I practice with them and shoot them well. This is what is meant by how they fit your hand.

If anyone flames you here for asking questions--screw them! Everyone has to learn.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 2:58:45 PM EDT
I couldn't shoot my G26 that well so I got rid of it. Shot much better with the G19.

Not all firearms fit everyone; and you're not the only one that shoots better with the G26.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 3:03:13 PM EDT
Thanks all for the feedback. Yeah, they definitely teach the CCW class, weekly actually. It's nice to see there is such a high demand. I completed my state application this morning and will be signing up for the class next week.

They do rent a wide variety of weapons for $6 each (+ammo), so no excuse for not trying a few. I imagine I will go back in a couple of days after reading some of the other ccw threads.

Yeah.. I try not to let flamers get to me, but I am the noob around here.. comes with the territory it seems.

Thanks again all!

Oh.. here's the target I was using...

Link Posted: 7/20/2008 3:05:54 PM EDT
A Lot of people shoot the G26 better than the G19. Seems counter-intuative, but happens quite a bit.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 5:14:54 PM EDT
i shoot better with my G23 over my G22.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 5:55:50 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/20/2008 6:01:29 PM EDT by Social_Zombie]
if the rear sight was adjusted more finely i bet the 19 would shoot just as well as the 26.

that said my 26 seems to be just as accurate as my 17.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 6:35:21 PM EDT
I've heard it more than once.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:47:48 AM EDT
I have found the same thing applies to me with the 23 and 27. All things being equal I shoot better with the 27,and if feels like it recoils less as well. I have also heard it's the double recoil spring set-up. You are NOT unusual. TJR
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 4:17:09 AM EDT
I purchased a G19 that was used. The rear sights had been chaged out to an adujustable for windage and elevation. When I took the pistol to the range the sights were almost all the way to the right. I set the sights back to the center adn shot bullseyes at fifiteen yards consistantly. I am very pleased with this pistol and sights.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 4:30:46 AM EDT
I've got a G17 and a G19, but the most accurate Glock for ME is my father-in-law's .40 G27. It doesn't fit my hand very well, but I can shoot the hell out of it. Goes against physics, but it's a fact.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 5:15:08 AM EDT
I often shoot sub compacts better than the compacts or even full size esp at distances inside 25'. I believe the shorter length slide/barrel help me stabilize the gun more efficiently.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 6:56:33 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/21/2008 6:59:56 AM EDT by jeremy54b]
I do this for a living....so let me preface by saying you are about the millionth person who has ventured into the first steps of shooting a handgun.

First and foremost, get the pistol that fits you the best. Don't buy other people
s Bs when they say that "X gun shoots best for you, you should get X", take advice and experience, but judge for yourself. IMHO and from observations on the range during training...adjustable sights have absolutely no place on a CCW or duty gun. Get a good set of fixed sights that offer you the same sight picture during the day as they do in low-light environments, I like TRUGLO TFOs or XS 24/7s and work on the following:

Second, you need to work on your sight picture and trigger control. People telling you to adjust your sights are giving you a solution for a non-existent problem. It is NOT the pistol...it's you. Your eyes should be focused on the front sight before you squeeze the trigger. Work on dry-fire practice drills. Ensure you are pulling the trigger with the first joint on your trigger finger, and that it is one consistent pull to the rear...not a jerk, not a slap, one consistent, smooth pull to the rear. Some people refer to it as a "press", that's fine too, as long as it's consistent and smooth. The sights are not off...I've shot a 19 in a class with no sights on it, and still consistently hit the 10 ring at 10, 15 and 25 yards at varying speeds to prove a point about sights and trigger control. It's taken me a long time to get to where I'm comfortable and confident making the statements I make, but I promise you, it is true.

There will be a pistol that "fits" you best, that's the one to get. But make sure you focus on those fundamentals and it will make it easier to determine which pistol fits you.

The other thing to pay attention to is making sure that whatever grip (it doesn't really matter if you hold the pistol with two fingers, or all ten), is consistent. Don't change in between each round to do the newbie "I've gotta see where that one went" look. Take your firing position, squeeze off five rounds with the same, consistent focus-on-the-front sight sight picture and smooth, consistent trigger press/squeeze, and then check out your target.

If you're ever in WA, swing by our range, I'll gladly work with you until you're in the 10 ring! (Or if you want, shoot me a PM and I can give you some drills I do with students to work on those things)

Good luck...oh, and BTW, with the focus on the front sight/steady trigger press or squeeze thinking, I can shoot ANY pistol to the same level of proficiency. Some makes and models don't shoot as comfortably as my 19, 21 and 26, but the same level of accuracy.

Anyone who thinks I'm full of the brown stuff is more than welcome to test the theory out...it works, I promise. It really is about trigger pull and focusing on the front sight...not about the gun.

Good Luck!
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 10:59:09 AM EDT
All those points that jeremy54b make are true. The Glock I bought recently had Glock adjustable sights. They were shifted all the way to the right. I did not trust this and set them back to the center. This pistol shot just fine with the sight set to the center. I wish tehy were not adjustable but they will stay on it for awhile. I have shot Sigs,HK,SpringfieldXD, and 1911 pistols. The Glock 19 is by far the most accurate and best pointing pistol I have fired. The front sight is real easy to hone in on when drawn. Try numerous pistols and shoot what you like and practice, prcatice practice.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 6:10:01 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Postal0311:
The subcompact glocks are often mechanical more accurate then some of larger models.

The double recoil spring system is often credited for this.

Maybe it's the grooved target trigger?
Link Posted: 8/16/2008 9:35:04 AM EDT
OK.. here's an update. I've been renting a variety of weapons as potentials for my CCW.

I've tried:

S&W M&P 9mm Compact
Glock 26
Glock 19
Walther P99AS

The list is ordered in my preference of the guns. As stated before.. I am a complete amateur / noob when it comes to handguns. I have about 500 rounds shot in the past month and very little before then.

I have rented the Glock 26 twice and the M&P twice because I liked them, and the G26 was the first one I rented and I wanted to do a side-by-side with the M&P to make sure my memory wasn't fooling me.

The Walther will never be in my hand again and with any luck I won't be in a situation where I am forced to handle one. It had 3 failure to feed issues out of a single box of ammo. The magazines were sharp, felt thin, more difficult to load, etc. I hated the feel of the grip. Very uncomfortable in *my* hand. I do think the trigger guard mag release is pretty damned cool, and it is an attractive gun, except for the goofy logo on the front of the slide. My son has been with me and has shot all of the guns as well. When we left and got in the car his words were 'what was that horrible gun you rented today'. I'm sure some of you love this gun, and this is not a personal insult. There are just some people that are not meant to have it. This is why buying solely off of a range report or a magazine review is a BAD idea. Rent/Borrow etc. Try before you buy or you will be sorry.

I still feel really comfortable with the G26. It feels pretty good in my hand. I do feel somewhat naked without the pinky grip on the gun, but this also prevents me from overgripping and shooting low. I've determined this was my problem with the G19. By moving most of my grip strength to my off hand I corrected my 'aim' problems with the mid- and full-sized versions. I like that this gun just works. It has clearly been rented a lot, and probably not serviced as often as some of the others.. but it doesn't matter. It does feel a little light / tinny? on the slide. I'm not sure how to describe it. It's not something that I would have noticed if I hadn't tried the S&W...

I have fallen in love with this weapon. I may try renting some others based upon suggestions, but I really don't have any reason to. The S&W M&P Compact one feels like 'the one' and shoots like it for me. From 7 yards I can shoot 3 inch 10 shot groups pretty often. From 15 I am in the 5-6 inch. I even tried a mag at 25 and was at least able to keep it in the rings. (I almost missed the paper with the Walther at 15). It seems like the Glock 2.0 to me. They have the light polymer frame, the integral safety without external safety to forget about and decent accuracy, but added a nice grip system and good looks to boot. I also like the slide grip a lot.

Looks like my decision is made, but based upon my rankings does anyone have similar experiences and another weapon that I HAVE to try?

I'll be at the marathon CCW class tomorrow and will make my final selection / purchase in two weeks.

Link Posted: 8/16/2008 10:07:29 AM EDT
Ok, just a thought, but sometimes range guns aren't well maintained, and are often well worn. Is it possible that the G19 wasn't running 100% or even had a shot out barrel while the G27 was newer or less used...?

I would be hesitant to base an accuracy comparison simply by comparing two range rental guns. Perhaps you can shoot a friend's G19 or borrow one at an open shoot.

G19 owner here, but considering picking up a M&P in 9mm myself with all the good things I hear about them.
Link Posted: 8/17/2008 7:52:41 AM EDT
I'm curious to hear how the OP is doing...

We have the same issues he described with our rental P99, it is 99.9% limp wristing and can be reproduced out on the range, much to the dismay of the customer who has to accept that it's them, not the gun.

It's about trigger pull and focusing on the front sight....proved it again a few days ago!
Link Posted: 8/18/2008 8:42:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By jeremy54b:
I'm curious to hear how the OP is doing...

We have the same issues he described with our rental P99, it is 99.9% limp wristing and can be reproduced out on the range, much to the dismay of the customer who has to accept that it's them, not the gun.

It's about trigger pull and focusing on the front sight....proved it again a few days ago!

Oh, I know it's me and not the gun in particular.. but I think a better description would be it's the combination of me and the gun.

I elected to do my range qualification with the S&W M&P 9mm Compact this evening and had no issues whatsoever from singles through rapid 5 shot. I shoot it about the same or better than the Glock 26.

You mentioned limp wristing. Everything that I have read seems to indicate that limp wristing will produce missing high. I rarely have this problem. I tend to shoot low and admit to gripping TOO tight with my trigger hand.

I have gotten a lot better after shooting almost a thousand rounds in the past few weeks. But.. I sill have a lot to learn and will hopefully get some expert help soon. Long and short of it is though: I have no desire to learn how to shoot the Walther better, because I have already found two weapons that are excellent options that I shoot well.
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