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Old 08-18-2018, 04:26 PM
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I am looking for advice on which SD pistol to get. I live in the Republic of New Jersey and I am currently waiting for three Golden Tickets, and probably will be for a couple more months. I already know that I want a Victory 22. I was looking for a decent SD pistol and discovered the Shield 380 EZ. I am 65 and have a little arthritis in my shooting hand. It took me several weeks to research and become content with the idea of using the 380 for SD.I don't want a tiny pocket pistol that is hard to control and hard to rack. The 380 EZ seemed to fill all the blanks and my LGS even had one that they were holding for someone and they showed it to me. I could live with this gun. My 24 year old son however thinks I should get a better looking 380 and he suggested the Browning 1911-380. I just held two of them at my LGS and although they are twice the price of the 380 EZ, they look.....cute.....sexy.....cool! I have some time before my Golden Tickets arrive and I need advice from people who have experience with either or both firearms.
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Old 08-18-2018, 04:49 PM
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I would, unquestionably, beyond doubt, and without hesitation, recommend the Smith.

Forget what your son thinks is pretty, and go with a gun YOU like and one built for a more "serious" market.
This is self-defense, not a beauty contest, and it's not your son who'll be carrying it.
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Old 08-18-2018, 04:56 PM
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For serious self defense, looks have nothing to do with your choice. Buy a gun that you can manipulate, shoot well, that is reliable and which you can conceal easily.

A 1911 style pistol is a hundred year old design adapted somewhat to modern needs.

The S&W .380 is a new, modern pistol designed specifically for your needs.
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Old 08-18-2018, 04:57 PM
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My wife bought a Shield EZ. Both she and I have been exceedingly positively impressed by it. This is the first handgun she's ever been excited about beyond the utility factor of self protection. She can operate it very easily, it does not tire her out to shoot it for many rounds, she can easily load the mags, and it fits her hand and she can reach the trigger and it has a good trigger! She fired 300 rounds through it on her first outing and said she could do it again, no problem. She loves it. I also like it very much, but can still operate my larger caliber Shields and revolvers just fine. My wife is 7 decades old and became unable to operate her Shield 9 effectively. No problem at all with the EZ.

It is accurate a plenty for it's purpose, and is large enough to easily hold and shoot well without being a heavy handgun to carry and manage. And as you say, you can buy two of them for what the Browning costs. In my experience, it is far simpler to own and operate and handle. Ours does not have the external safety and we feel no need for it to have that. It draws and shoots just like her previous choice, an M-442 J Frame, and she likes it much better. It has been reliable and has our full confidence. She keeps her rounds inside the bottom of a small paper plate, which is sufficient!

My strong recommendation for you is the Shield EZ between the two choices you have identified. It has certainly been the best answer for my wife's personal protection needs. It holds eight plus one fully loaded, and the spare mag she carrys holds eight more rounds that are easily and quickly reloaded. She is willing and ready to go to the range and shoot this handgun, and she learned from the first outing forward to take it apart and clean it for herself, for which she was proud. The Shield EZ has been a win/win/win for both of us all the way around.
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Old 08-18-2018, 05:12 PM
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I hear ya and if I wasn't leaning in that direction I wounldn't have asked. I also like the fact that the 380 EZ has a rail. The Browning has some models that also have a rail but it spoils the 1911 look. I don't have an unlimited budget and the S&W would leave more $$$ for ammo.
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Old 08-18-2018, 06:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DOUBLESHOT View Post
. I don't have an unlimited budget and the S&W would leave more $$$ for ammo.
And there ya go.



Seriously, if YOU found a model that fits all your needs and budget, no real reason not to go that route.
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Old 08-18-2018, 07:28 PM
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The Smith is built with self-defense for a specific market base in mind.
The Browning is built more as a toy.
Denis
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Old 08-18-2018, 07:33 PM
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Also I think if I remember correctly the slide on the Browning is a bit harder to rack. Your earlier comments seem to mention that you have arthritus also so that need to be considered. Also the cost difference.
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Old 08-18-2018, 07:49 PM
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I've had my .380 Shield EZ since they came out in February and I've put over 1,100 rounds thru her. Always accurate with No problems at all. My EZ is my first semi automatic. Since 1976 I've owned only various Smith stainless 2 and 4" .357 magnums. I loved my 357's but I really enjoy shooting and carrying my .380 Shield EZ daily. A lot less recoil than .357 and I can put more rounds on target in a faster time. Easy to field strip and clean too.
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Old 08-18-2018, 07:56 PM
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AND, they are MILD!!!!!
(Old Fart Joke, have to be a certain age to get it.)
Denis
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Old 08-18-2018, 08:01 PM
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Another nice full-size .380 is the Browning BDA, which is the same gun as the Beretta 84FS (double stack) and 85FS (single stack).
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Old 08-18-2018, 08:05 PM
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I did rack the Browning today and while it was not difficult it was slightly harder than the Smith. The mags. don't have the thumb loading aids that the 380EZ has either. The Browning 1911-380 sure is a neat, cool looking gun but the 380EZ is a more realistic choice for me. That and the S&W 22 Victory will leave me with one permit to use. I still have a couple of months to dream about that one. BTW when we do get handgun permits here in Jersey, each one is only good for 90 days and you can only buy one gun every 30 days. They just passed a new law mandating that pistol mags. can hold no more than 10 rounds. Wait....am I in New Jersey or the old Soviet Union???

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Old 08-18-2018, 10:35 PM
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Take a serious look at the Sig 239. A bit more expensive, but I think the easiest to rack and the least recoil of almost any .380. When a buddy offered to let me try his.....I was privately apprehensive (read - sissy) because a lot of the .380’s are snappy and very unpleasant to shoot. I was frankly astonished at what a sweet shooter it was; accurate as well. The little Kahr .380 is very nice as well, but a real bear to rack.
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Old 08-18-2018, 11:02 PM
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You think the 239's easier to cycle than the EZ?
Really?
Denis
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Old 08-19-2018, 02:15 AM
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Quote:
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You think the 239's easier to cycle than the EZ?
Really?
Denis
I think he's referring to the SIG P238, which is a .380 and is very easy to rack. The P239 is an out of production gun that came in 9mm, .357 SIG, and .40 cal. only.
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Old 08-19-2018, 08:43 AM
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I would suggest you look at, and shoot, the Sig P365. Twelve rounds, small size, and very accurate, it is hard to beat.
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Old 08-19-2018, 09:13 AM
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Thanks Swsig for catching my error, yes the correct # is P238. Very nice gun, easy to shoot

Dpris, glad you caught it for the OP. I am REALLY not offended.....I see you don’t like anybody’s posts....
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Old 08-21-2018, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dpris View Post
The Smith is built with self-defense for a specific market base in mind.
The Browning is built more as a toy.
Denis
Not a toy, I have a EZ380,a browning 1911 380 and a browning 1911 22 and they are all great shooters. I have to agree the browning looks better!
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Old 08-21-2018, 10:03 PM
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I went my LGS and range yesterday and had the opportunity to handle both the 380EZ and the 1911-380 and I have to admit it, the Browning felt better. I had to concentrate on squeezing the grip safety on the Smith but on the Browning I didn't have to think about it. I think I am going to go with the 1911-380.

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Old 08-21-2018, 11:02 PM
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Quote:
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I did rack the Browning today and while it was not difficult it was slightly harder than the Smith. The mags. don't have the thumb loading aids that the 380EZ has either. The Browning 1911-380 sure is a neat, cool looking gun but the 380EZ is a more realistic choice for me. That and the S&W 22 Victory will leave me with one permit to use. I still have a couple of months to dream about that one. BTW when we do get handgun permits here in Jersey, each one is only good for 90 days and you can only buy one gun every 30 days. They just passed a new law mandating that pistol mags. can hold no more than 10 rounds. Wait....am I in New Jersey or the old Soviet Union???
In answer to your rhetorical question,that's easily fixed.
Move!
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Old 08-21-2018, 11:42 PM
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Quote:
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BTW when we do get handgun permits here in Jersey, each one is only good for 90 days and you can only buy one gun every 30 days. They just passed a new law mandating that pistol mags. can hold no more than 10 rounds. Wait....am I in New Jersey or the old Soviet Union???
Don't forget, you can get a renewal on the unused Permits to Purchase. Go back, all they do is date and resign it.


Don't worry about magazine capacity, all the guns you mentioned hold 10 or less. Next thing to worry about in NJ is insurance.
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Old 08-22-2018, 12:02 AM
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Sheila and I rented S&W EZ380 today. We wanted to see if she could handle it. She could rack the slide, load the magazine, and shoot it. She has rheumatoid arthritis in her hands. She did quite well for the first time with the pistol. Next trip to the range we will purchase this pistol for her...
I took several shots with it also. Enjoyed shooting it...
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Old 08-22-2018, 01:45 AM
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Not to be contrary but don't rule out a Glock 43. My wife can operate it with little difficulty. It's the only tiny 9mm she can operate. The shield 9 is a no go for her as are all of the other small(er) 9s. The advantage of the 9s, aside from the power, is the easy availability of less expensive ammo, enabling you to shoot more. The Glock is a little heavier than some which tames down the recoil compared to others.
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Old 08-23-2018, 01:14 PM
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I looked at the Glock G43 online and like many other guns my main concerns are it will be harder to rack because it is a 9mm, the recoil will be more than a 380, the grip seems to be a little short (not looking for a pocket gun), and it is a little wider than the Browning 1911-380, making it harder to conceal IWB. I am thinking of this gun as mainly for SD. I own a Beretta 92FS, a S&W model 36 and a Colt Python. I can operate all of these. Sometimes the Beretta slide is a little hard to rack. The S&W 36 borders on the painful to shoot and the Colt Python.... Well I love it but in the even of an SD incident, I know that the authorities will take your weapon for testing, evidence, etc. In the words of the great Paul Simon...."Momma don't take my Python away" (or was that Kodachrome???). In any case, I want an SD gun that is easy to operate under pressure, small enough to conceal IWB and has low enough recoil that I can get an accurate second and possibly third shot. The Browning 1911-380 seems to fill the requirements and it sure looks nice. Holding it at the store, it does feel comfortable.

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Old 08-23-2018, 01:30 PM
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What about an LC380, my wife could rack the slide easier than an LCP or BDA.


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Old 08-23-2018, 01:46 PM
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While I haven't held one, I thing that the grip would be too short for me to get my three fingers around. That's why I originally liked the 380EZ, the grip is longer than the pocket guns. I am a big guy and I want something that I can hold onto in a fight. I have never had to use a gun nor do I have any LE experience. I hope that I never need to use one for SD but the world is getting smaller and crazier and I live in a sanctuary state. I want something that I can use that will become second nature for me. I am a photographer by trade and my main camera body is like that to me, second nature.

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Old 08-24-2018, 02:05 AM
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Doubleshot,
You should probably try the Glock 43 in person. It' my wife's gun because it's easy to rack the slide. It is small and thin enough for IWB appendix. That's how I carried it before my wife stole it from me. I had bought her a Shield 9 so we traded.

The Glock is a lot easier to rack, easier to load the mags too. But I'm happy with the Shield. It's a nice little gun. Yeah, the Glock is a little thicker but it really is an easy IWB appendix carry. I don't find the recoil on the 43 to be bad at all and you don't have to run +Ps in it. The grip length isn't a problem if you get an extended mag or grip extension. But np, neither the Glock or the Smiths are sexy looking like the little Browning.

I don't know how the new S&W 380 is but 380's in general aren't known for their reliability, especially with hollow points. The only 380 I ever had that was totally reliable was a PPKS, but those aren't for shooters with weak or arthritic hands due to the field stripping method involved with them.
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Old 08-24-2018, 02:21 AM
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He's in N.J., no hollow points except for cops and bad guys.....
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Old 08-24-2018, 08:17 AM
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And don't forget that we have to warn an intruder before we shoot them! I will look for the Glock 43 and see how it racks and holds in my hands. It sure is a lot cheaper than the Browning. But it does have to overcome the ugliness factor, that has to be worth $100. In New Jersey, because of the hassle of getting permission to buy a handgun, picking out a model is rather special. The process give us a lot of drool time so when we finally get to buy one, we want it to be something special. When I retire and move back to the United States, it will be fun to walk into a gun shop and see a gun and purchase it on the spot.
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Old 08-24-2018, 10:04 AM
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He's in N.J., no hollow points except for cops and bad guys.....
Allowed for home defense. He’s not getting a carry permit. It’s more of another crime they’re going to charge you with when you get caught committing a crime with a gun.
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Old 08-24-2018, 10:15 AM
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I've never liked the looks of the Glocks but I have had at least one from very early on with the first being a 21. I have years of IWB carry on a Glock 23. They have plastic frames, are ugly and not at all sexy. But the darn things work! And they are consistently above average in combat accuracy. I know they can break and can malfunction but I've never seen one fail (other than with some really bad remanfuctured ammo) and I've seen a lot of Glocks fired in qualification over the years. Also bear in mind that whatever finish treatment they put on Glocks is some miracle stuff as it holds up amazingly well, even in a marine environment. If the Browning is blued and you use it as an IWB carry gun, you will be fighting rust for ever. That's not the end of the world as people have been dealing with that issue since the first gun, but it should be considered. So you need to decide if you want sexy or reliability and practicality.
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Old 08-24-2018, 11:43 AM
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I've never liked the looks of the Glocks but I have had at least one from very early on with the first being a 21. I have years of IWB carry on a Glock 23. They have plastic frames, are ugly and not at all sexy. But the darn things work! And they are consistently above average in combat accuracy. I know they can break and can malfunction but I've never seen one fail (other than with some really bad remanfuctured ammo) and I've seen a lot of Glocks fired in qualification over the years. Also bear in mind that whatever finish treatment they put on Glocks is some miracle stuff as it holds up amazingly well, even in a marine environment. If the Browning is blued and you use it as an IWB carry gun, you will be fighting rust for ever. That's not the end of the world as people have been dealing with that issue since the first gun, but it should be considered. So you need to decide if you want sexy or reliability and practicality.

If I get the Browning it will be the 1911-380 Black Label Medallion Pro which has a Stainless Steel slide & barrel. After reading countless reviews and watching many videos, I think the Browning is both reliable and practical, espicially if I get the 4.25" barrel.
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Old 08-24-2018, 01:09 PM
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Enjoy it and happy shooting.
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Old 09-11-2018, 07:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dpris View Post
The Smith is built with self-defense for a specific market base in mind.
The Browning is built more as a toy.
Denis
So if you get shot with a browning 1911 380 it won't hurt!!
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