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Nu2gunz

22LR vs 9mm pistol

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Forgive the completely newbie question. And thanks for any information. 

Would it be reasonable to learn to shoot with proficiency on a 22LR pistol and will those skill transfer readily when switching to a 9mm? Or would just starting out with a 9mm make the most sense? My goal is to become very proficient at hand guns. Basically starting from scratch. Will I learn proper technique, grip, sight picture, etc with the 9mm? Happily I can rent all sorts of hand guns at the ranges around me, but will eventually want to make a purchase. Thoughts? 

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Short answer IMO is "yes", it's reasonable to start on a .22.

Lots and lots of people start shooting with .22 for the reasons you list.  The lower recoil, less noise, and cheaper ammo fro .22 means that you are able to shoot more for less and focus on your technique and avoid building bad habits.  When you move over from .22 to a larger caliber there is a learning curve to adjust to the recoil, sound, and grip of a new gun, but if you have sound fundamentals you should be good.

With that said, there are also lots and lots of people who learned to shoot on 9mm (or other larger calibers).  Some people only want one gun, or are given a gun that they'll be shooting, so they learn on what they have.

Ultimately you get to be good by putting a lot of rounds downrange with strong basics/fundamentals. As with most things, taking a class from time to time will greatly improve the way you perform.

 

 

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I’m a huge fan of learning to shoot well with a .22 before moving up.  I start all new shooters with the .22.   Cheaper, easier to diagnose errors, much less likely to induce a flinch that will be hard to unlearn later, and the .22 will probably be more accurate than the 9, depending on what guns are selected, of course. 

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It's reasonable to start with a 22 . . . Personally, I started with both.  I shoot with the 9mm in order to stay comfortable using it.  But, I put far, far, more rounds through my 22 because it's so cheap to shoot.

At the same time, my daughter only puts a few rounds through the 9mm when we go shooting.  She is small framed and gets tired of it easily but she will shoot that 22 all day long.  So, I make sure that she puts enough rounds through the 9mm that she isn't afraid to use it if she needs it.

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48 minutes ago, Nu2gunz said:

Forgive the completely newbie question. And thanks for any information. 

Would it be reasonable to learn to shoot with proficiency on a 22LR pistol and will those skill transfer readily when switching to a 9mm? Or would just starting out with a 9mm make the most sense? My goal is to become very proficient at hand guns. Basically starting from scratch. Will I learn proper technique, grip, sight picture, etc with the 9mm? Happily I can rent all sorts of hand guns at the ranges around me, but will eventually want to make a purchase. Thoughts? 

Starting with a BB gun is better than jumping right into and centerfire cartridge - i 100000% recommend starting on a .22 - if you want and are in the North Jersey area - let me know you can join me at Cherry Ridge Range.......  :)

 

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5 minutes ago, USRifle30Cal said:

Starting with a BB gun is better than jumping right into and centerfire cartridge - i 100000% recommend starting on a .22 - if you want and are in the North Jersey area - let me know you can join me at Cherry Ridge Range.......  :)

 

Thank you! I'm in South Jersey, but appreciate the offer very much. Thanks for the info! I will start with the SR22. My local range has them to rent. Also getting a 10/22 so my son and I can plink with. 

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55 minutes ago, Nu2gunz said:

Forgive the completely newbie question. And thanks for any information. 

Would it be reasonable to learn to shoot with proficiency on a 22LR pistol and will those skill transfer readily when switching to a 9mm? Or would just starting out with a 9mm make the most sense? My goal is to become very proficient at hand guns. Basically starting from scratch. Will I learn proper technique, grip, sight picture, etc with the 9mm? Happily I can rent all sorts of hand guns at the ranges around me, but will eventually want to make a purchase. Thoughts? 

yes, absolutely

the mechanics don't change, just muscle memory through practice

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On 12/18/2020 at 3:03 PM, RUTGERS95 said:

yes, absolutely

the mechanics don't change, just muscle memory through practice

That's really not true. You can get away with a number of bad habits with .22 that will cause you problems when actual recoil management is needed. I find this to mostly come up with self directed learning with a .22. One example is you can shoot .22 pretty accurately with a very limp grip due to minimal recoil. 

The flip side is how well you can avoid developing a flinch with a centerfire caliber and/or how well you can self direct to mitigate and unlearn your flinch. 

 

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12 minutes ago, raz-0 said:

That's really not true. You can get away with a number of bad habits with .22 that will cause you problems when actual recoil management is needed. I find this to mostly come up with self directed learning with a .22. One example is you can shoot .22 pretty accurately with a very limp grip due to minimal recoil. 

The flip side is how well you can avoid developing a flinch with a centerfire caliber and/or how well you can self direct to mitigate and unlearn your flinch. 

 

Good discussion.

I agree with Rutgers.  Mechanics shouldn't change.

If Shooter A is putting 10 shot groups into a 1 inch circle all-day at 25 yards  then he's likely developing sound mechanics.  Give Shooter A a Glock 17 for the first time and there will be a learning curve to adjust to recoil, noise, new grip, new sights, etc., but mechanics shouldn't change.

I think you're spot-on about self taught/directed people learning (and trying to unlearn) bad habits...

 

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One of my "starters" was a pocket 380 with a long double action only trigger pull....Lots of initial flinching and recoil there!  I remember going to a range with my brother for short periods of time with limited ammo and having limited success.  It wasnt until I spent long periods of time at outdoor state gameland ranges that I finally got good at shooting that gun, as well as a few others.

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While I usually start new shooters with a 22 all skills don't easily transfer to a centerfire.

When I started with the Federal government we had one shooter that had issues and couldn't hit anything with a 4" S&W M66 with wadcutters.  Instructor switched her to a 4" M18, 22.  She shot that well.  Same grip, trigger, etc.  Eventually shot the 66 good enough to qualify.

About 25 years ago several LE agencies tried teaching new recruits with 22s first. They found no benefit from that.  They found when they switched to centerfire it was a new learning experience.

 

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My first handgun was a Sig P226 22lr.

I then bought the 9mm conversion kit for it. This way you are training in 22lr with the exact same gun you will shoot in 9mm. Since you can just buy the conversion kit it's like getting 2 guns with one permit.

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1 hour ago, raz-0 said:

That's really not true. You can get away with a number of bad habits with .22 that will cause you problems when actual recoil management is needed. I find this to mostly come up with self directed learning with a .22. One example is you can shoot .22 pretty accurately with a very limp grip due to minimal recoil. 

The flip side is how well you can avoid developing a flinch with a centerfire caliber and/or how well you can self direct to mitigate and unlearn your flinch. 

 

disagree, mechanics don't change and if they do, you are doing something wrong.

by your logic, shooting any different caliber would change the outcome and that is just not true with proper training.   Everything you do shouldn't change one bit regardless of 22 to 45 to hot 357 loads

2 minutes ago, papulski said:

My first handgun was a Sig P226 22lr.

I then bought the 9mm conversion kit for it. This way you are training in 22lr with the exact same gun you will shoot in 9mm. Since you can just buy the conversion kit it's like getting 2 guns with one permit.

they need one for the 320!!!!!!!!!!

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On 12/18/2020 at 2:54 PM, USRifle30Cal said:

Starting with a BB gun is better than jumping right into and centerfire cartridge - i 100000% recommend starting on a .22 - if you want and are in the North Jersey area - let me know you can join me at Cherry Ridge Range.......  :)

 

This is the answer. Get a spring powered BB or pellet gun. The lock time and mechanics of one of these will drive home every fundamental in the book including follow through.

The ammo is even cheaper than .22lr too!

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1 hour ago, RUTGERS95 said:

disagree, mechanics don't change and if they do, you are doing something wrong.

by your logic, shooting any different caliber would change the outcome and that is just not true with proper training.   Everything you do shouldn't change one bit regardless of 22 to 45 to hot 357 loads

they need one for the 320!!!!!!!!!!

So you  are saying you mitigate recoil with the exact same grip on a 9mm semi auto as a 357 revolver? 

Yes, you can practice accuracy on a 22. but everything you learn about shot to shot sight picture can be off. You CAN practice a good grip and good habits. But without the feedback of recoil you can get away with a lot of sloppiness. Not to mention you usually get a nicer single action trigger which can cover up a lot, but that isn't exclusivity to 22s. Now 22 with decent instruction, and you can steer them away from bad habits pretty well. Then there's the fact the sound isn't remotely the same. 22+earpro is pretty tame, and doesn't necessarily prepare you for centerfire noise. 

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17 minutes ago, raz-0 said:

So you  are saying you mitigate recoil with the exact same grip on a 9mm semi auto as a 357 revolver? 

Yes, you can practice accuracy on a 22. but everything you learn about shot to shot sight picture can be off. You CAN practice a good grip and good habits. But without the feedback of recoil you can get away with a lot of sloppiness. Not to mention you usually get a nicer single action trigger which can cover up a lot, but that isn't exclusivity to 22s. Now 22 with decent instruction, and you can steer them away from bad habits pretty well. Then there's the fact the sound isn't remotely the same. 22+earpro is pretty tame, and doesn't necessarily prepare you for centerfire noise. 

Surely you realize that pretty much everything you mention happens after the bullet leaves the muzzle and you no longer have any control over where it goes? A new shooter isn't (at least really shouldn't) be attempting rapid fire where recoil mitigation is needed for subsequent shots.

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2 hours ago, raz-0 said:

So you  are saying you mitigate recoil with the exact same grip on a 9mm semi auto as a 357 revolver? 

Yes, you can practice accuracy on a 22. but everything you learn about shot to shot sight picture can be off. You CAN practice a good grip and good habits. But without the feedback of recoil you can get away with a lot of sloppiness. Not to mention you usually get a nicer single action trigger which can cover up a lot, but that isn't exclusivity to 22s. Now 22 with decent instruction, and you can steer them away from bad habits pretty well. Then there's the fact the sound isn't remotely the same. 22+earpro is pretty tame, and doesn't necessarily prepare you for centerfire noise. 

I don't think anyone would argue that recoil and noise are significant factors to account for and adjust to when moving from rimfire to centerfire.

I think what most (including me) are saying is those things are not part of the mechanics you practice/learn when shooting a .22.  Things like stance, grip, sight alignment, breathing, trigger control, etc, etc, can be the same regardless of the pistol you have in your hand.

There's no single "9mm semi", "357 revolver", or ".22 pistol".  There are many and varied versions of all of them.  You have to apply your proper mechanics each time you pick up a new gun, but you don't teach yourself new mechanics each time.  If you did you'd need classes on "How to shoot a Glock 17", "How to Shoot a Glock 19", "How to shoot a Sig P365", etc, etc.

 

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44 minutes ago, 124gr9mm said:

I don't think anyone would argue that recoil and noise are significant factors to account for and adjust to when moving from rimfire to centerfire.

I think what most (including me) are saying is those things are not part of the mechanics you practice/learn when shooting a .22.  Things like stance, grip, sight alignment, breathing, trigger control, etc, etc, can be the same regardless of the pistol you have in your hand.

There's no single "9mm semi", "357 revolver", or ".22 pistol".  There are many and varied versions of all of them.  You have to apply your proper mechanics each time you pick up a new gun, but you don't teach yourself new mechanics each time.  If you did you'd need classes on "How to shoot a Glock 17", "How to Shoot a Glock 19", "How to shoot a Sig P365", etc, etc.

 

But you can have a really sloppy stance and 22 won't penalize you for it. Centerfire cartridges will behave better with a proper stance with support. Similarly you can have noodle arms and still get decent groups with a .22. Centerfire will penalize you for it. You can have a weak grip, and get good groups with a 22, especially if you are setting up individual shots each time and not working a series of consecutive shots. Then you add on from that that trigger control is related to grip, and grip is related to stance, etc. 

You can practice and reinforce the proper way to do things with a 22. You can also seriously reinforce sloppy habits.

One I have run into repeatedly is common among female shooters.  That leaning back shoulder blades behind your ass stance women seem to gravitate towards naturally. You can shoot a .22 just fine like that. It's going to work like shit for centerfire, especially if shooting more than one shot in a row. Exactly zero of it translates to shooting and moving. 

Generally with new and newer shooters, I try to not mess with success. If it is working well for them, I don't really harp on if it is "right" or not. However, I have seen plenty of bad habits from learning on .22. 

My general advice is if you are really budget constrained and must shoot .22 for livefire practice, shoot a bit of centerfire. Pick out things that aren't working well and how you aim to improve. Then practice THAT on the .22. It'll be less bad. 

Also, different people are different. Some people take to self guided practice, analysis, and improvement very well. Some people need instruction and will just pick random things to reinforce that may be good, bad, or nonsensical. 

 

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3 hours ago, Mr.Stu said:

Surely you realize that pretty much everything you mention happens after the bullet leaves the muzzle and you no longer have any control over where it goes? A new shooter isn't (at least really shouldn't) be attempting rapid fire where recoil mitigation is needed for subsequent shots.

You don't have to rapid fire to practice properly returning to your point of aim. And you SHOULD be practicing that as a new shooter as follow through. Or you will spend more time and ammo breaking bad habits that hinder bot progress and consistency. 

An example. Not practicing follow through back to your natural point of aim gives you a free pass on habits like rebuilding your grip after every shot. That will not only hurt you in rapid fire and run and gun stuff, but it will make it harder to develop accuracy as now you aren't just wrestling site picture but your grip habits with ever shot. 

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44 minutes ago, raz-0 said:

But you can have a really sloppy stance and 22 won't penalize you for it. Centerfire cartridges will behave better with a proper stance with support. Similarly you can have noodle arms and still get decent groups with a .22. Centerfire will penalize you for it. You can have a weak grip, and get good groups with a 22, especially if you are setting up individual shots each time and not working a series of consecutive shots. Then you add on from that that trigger control is related to grip, and grip is related to stance, etc. 

You can practice and reinforce the proper way to do things with a 22. You can also seriously reinforce sloppy habits.

One I have run into repeatedly is common among female shooters.  That leaning back shoulder blades behind your ass stance women seem to gravitate towards naturally. You can shoot a .22 just fine like that. It's going to work like shit for centerfire, especially if shooting more than one shot in a row. Exactly zero of it translates to shooting and moving. 

Generally with new and newer shooters, I try to not mess with success. If it is working well for them, I don't really harp on if it is "right" or not. However, I have seen plenty of bad habits from learning on .22. 

My general advice is if you are really budget constrained and must shoot .22 for livefire practice, shoot a bit of centerfire. Pick out things that aren't working well and how you aim to improve. Then practice THAT on the .22. It'll be less bad. 

Also, different people are different. Some people take to self guided practice, analysis, and improvement very well. Some people need instruction and will just pick random things to reinforce that may be good, bad, or nonsensical. 

 

Fine.

You're arguing Just to "be right" at this point.

Of course you have to practice PROPER mechanics and fundamentals.  Nobody suggested that shitty practice on a .22 would in any way be a good thing.

The question - "Would it be reasonable to learn to shoot with proficiency on a 22LR pistol and will those skill transfer readily when switching to a 9mm?"

MANY people on the forum - Yes.  Developing strong mechanics on the .22 will be transferable to other calibers.

raz-0 - No.  If you're lazy and do bad things practicing on a .22 something, something, something...

 

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10 minutes ago, 124gr9mm said:

Fine.

You're arguing Just to "be right" at this point.

Of course you have to practice PROPER mechanics and fundamentals.  Nobody suggested that shitty practice on a .22 would in any way be a good thing.

The question - "Would it be reasonable to learn to shoot with proficiency on a 22LR pistol and will those skill transfer readily when switching to a 9mm?"

MANY people on the forum - Yes.  Developing strong mechanics on the .22 will be transferable to other calibers.

raz-0 - No.  If you're lazy and do bad things practicing on a .22 something, something, something...

 

I’m not arguing to be right. I’m adding detail to my points with a bunch of prone telling me I’m wrong despite having seen many examples of poor self guided training with a .22 causing issues shooters wished to overcome later. 
 

If your goal is to engage in nra bullseye league style shooting where you have an indefinite period of time to work on your next shot, then yes, you can practice poorly and mask a lot of issues with the fact that what you are doing doesn’t really care much about what happens after the trigger breaks. 
 

Oddly, new shooters tend to not know what they don’t know. 

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1 hour ago, raz-0 said:

One I have run into repeatedly is common among female shooters.  That leaning back shoulder blades behind your ass stance women seem to gravitate towards naturally. You can shoot a .22 just fine like that. It's going to work like shit for centerfire, especially if shooting more than one shot in a row. Exactly zero of it translates to shooting and moving. 

I used to similarly caution Boy Scouts when shifting from a .22 rifle....to a 20 or 12 gauge shotgun.  Those were the two merit badges they worked on during summer camp, and the recoil is significantly different.  Without proper preparation, they are going to hurt themselves.

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female shooters are different as are the variables for hand size.  Female shooters are often faster learners beginning with worse 'habits'

I was friends with the training officers for the njsp range and amazingly, just chaning handguns raised scores, on avg, 21pts. 

 

@124gr9mm agree with you and that's why I just let it go.  Some have a irreconcilable need to be right

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