[Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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Hey LGC members!

I've not been a gun owner for a long time. However, I recently spent some time with some friends of mine who are competitive shooters and I'm interested in re-exploring this hobby through a very different lens compared to where I used to be. I'm looking for some help in figuring out what I should be looking at, as well as some other general questions.

I'm looking primarily at getting into pistol competitions in a USPSA style. So, OWB holster, dynamic course of fire, a couple of reloads, stuff like that.

I was invited to an event a couple of weeks ago and, because I'm left-handed, I had to quickly get some lefty gear so I now own a cheap left-handed universal drop-leg holster and a 3-mag pouch for my belt. Nothing particularly flashy but it got the job done on the day. I'm sure I will be upgrading that gear sooner rather than later.

Right now I need to choose a gun, and that feels like a monumental task. I come from the auto racing world and when you're racing cars, the car you choose can have a monumental impact on your ability to be competitive. I know shooting is more heavily correlated to personal proficiency, but I don't want to handicap myself accidentally. I anticipate that whatever I buy I will eventually extensively modify as I continue to progress in the sport and find my skills exceeding the capabilities of my equipment, so I'm mostly hunting for a good platform that will allow me to grow and develop over time.

I want to compete in the Cary Optics class so I'm looking for something that either is or can easily be made optics-ready. I'd also like a gun with a magazine capacity somewhere close to 20 as that seems to be the standard. Finally, as I'm just dipping my toes into this sport, I'd like to spend as little as I can get away with. Additionally, as I mentioned earlier, I'm left-handed so I'd like to get something with ambi controls so I'm not at a disadvantage when I'm reloading.

I'm sure that many of you are going to suggest I go to a gun range and rent a few guns to find what works well for me. My understanding is that most ranges will not rent a gun to a solo individual due to suicide risks. On top of that the couple of ranges I've been to seem to not have anything "competition ready" for rent. It's mostly either carry guns or duty guns. But beyond that I'm really hoping for some of that tribal knowledge of where to start. The friends who introduced me shoot a CZ P10F Competition and a CZ TSO and they are the only guns I've shot in over 10 years.

If at all possible, I'd like to buy used for two reasons. First, buying used seems like a great way to save some cash at the beginning of the hobby. Second, I'd prefer to not support organizations that are fundamentally at odds with my vision for gun politics and I expect that many manufacturers, retailers, etc. support organizations like the NRA which isn't something I want to support. If anyone has suggestions on brands I can lean towards that don't support the NRA that would be sweet!

Anyway, I think I've rambled on enough. I really appreciate that LGC exists and I look forward to hearing everyone's perspectives.

Cheers,

Nick

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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Most ranges will rent to you if you are alone, but bring a gun. Call and check for specific policies.

Second, I would be hesitant to recommend buying a used competition gun, as they can have high round counts. Something lightly used that you can modify into a race gun might be better.

I have no recommendations, except CZ has a good reputation for mods (Cajun).

I just built a Glock 17l and it shoots better than me most days.
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"Person, woman, man, camera, TV."

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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Welcome! Hopefully some Colorado members may be of more assistance locally, finding ranges etc.

Do you have a preference for striker vs. hammer fired? Here, P-10F vs. TSO? I think that choice will inform your development as a shooter more than anything else.

There seem to be a fair number of people who will run Glocks competitively if you want to go the striker route. There's a huge aftermarket and the newer models are optic friendly. They aren't terribly expensive out of the box, although competition can fix that. Not having a manual safety isn't an issue for a range toy, but you have to be really good about trigger discipline and clearing the chamber before takedown to avoid Glock Leg. The P-10F is in a similar price range.

With a hammer, you have DASA vs. SAO options, but CZ is highly regarded either way. TSO is SAO, while the Shadow platform is DASA. Or there's the DWX if you want a 1911 style trigger on a CZ platform. The Shadow 2 Optic Ready platform isn't crazy expensive, but other platforms - like TSO - would need some work for optic mounts.

Senorgrand has a point about used guns. Whatever you spend to get started, expect to spend a lot more over time - parts, upgrades, new guns, more new guns, safes. Not to mention the time and ammunition. Unless you have specific limitations - say, a spouse who will only tolerate one gun in the house - there's no need to indulge too much on your initial foray. There will be time and opportunity to upgrade and we will be here to enable you.

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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https://langdontactical.com/beretta-px4 ... sd-by-ltt/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzuYTI-8qxo&t=47s

I carry Beretta Px4's and watched an acquaintance shoot competitions at the local rifle club with one of these Langdon Tactical Px4 Storms. All I can say is wow.

VooDoo
Tyrants disarm the people they intend to oppress.

I am sworn to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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Nickanator8 wrote: Thu Mar 14, 2024 11:13 am Thanks for the feedback! Wings, I'm not sure about hammer vs. striker. I don't think I have the experience to identify any differences between the two actions. Do they really shoot/feel meaningfully different from one another?
There isn't much difference and both types of action have been around for over a century at least. I have a striker fired pistol that was made 1913 and still works as well today as it did then. The very best triggers among all the guns I own are both hammer fired, the 1911 platform and a Single Action revolver. My carry today happens to be a Double Action/ Single Action striker fired S&W copy of a Walther design.
To be vintage it must be older than me!
The next gun I buy will be the next to last gun I ever buy. PROMISE!
jim

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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Nickanator8 wrote: Thu Mar 14, 2024 11:13 am Thanks for the feedback! Wings, I'm not sure about hammer vs. striker. I don't think I have the experience to identify any differences between the two actions. Do they really shoot/feel meaningfully different from one another?
Yes.

A hammer fired, single action can be nice and smooth, crisp, with a good break.

Strikers always feel like you're pushing a ten pound weight through a small tube with a sponge.

If you gave me a Glock, I'd sell it and use the money to buy a yellow dog. Then I'd shoot the dog.

And I love dogs.

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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sig230 wrote: Thu Mar 14, 2024 11:57 am My carry today happens to be a Double Action/ Single Action striker fired S&W copy of a Walther design.
I have only ever seen DS/SA pistols with hammers - There is actually a striker fired pistol that is DS/SA?

VooDoo
Tyrants disarm the people they intend to oppress.

I am sworn to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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VodoundaVinci wrote: Fri Mar 15, 2024 12:16 pm
sig230 wrote: Thu Mar 14, 2024 11:57 am My carry today happens to be a Double Action/ Single Action striker fired S&W copy of a Walther design.
I have only ever seen DS/SA pistols with hammers - There is actually a striker fired pistol that is DS/SA?

VooDoo
Several. All at least based on the Walther P99 design.
left-side.jpg
SW99-Decocker.jpg
Note the elongated button right in front of the rear sight. Press that down decocks the striker pin and moves the trigger to a forward position. It also makes the striker indicator on the rear to recess. Then a longer trigger pull cocks the striker and then releases it.

Another neat innovation is the rear sight is held in place by a spring loaded detente that the windage adjustment screw (left hand threaded) rides on. To change the rear sights just depress the detente and slide the sights off (and make sure the spring and detente don't launch to Infinity & Beyond). Front is similar to what Glock does with a screw from inside,
To be vintage it must be older than me!
The next gun I buy will be the next to last gun I ever buy. PROMISE!
jim

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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Neat! I love reading about the oddball designs. I'd probably have more fun shooting them, but I don't have that kind of spare change.

I presume that the OP was looking to stick with 9mm Parabellum given the criteria - optic-ready competition with 20ish rounds in a mag - but .40 is an option in the TSO. Tanfoglio runs a series of competition pistols evolved off the CZ75 in a whole slew of cartridge options, going down the DASA route. Beretta is pushing more competition geared variants on the 92 platform, if the rotating barrel of the PX4 isn't your gig.

I left out 1911s although they have plenty of competition chops, and cowboy shooting sports are their own thing.

Re: [Denver] Looking to buy a competition setup

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Ylatkit wrote: Thu Mar 14, 2024 12:47 pm
Nickanator8 wrote: Thu Mar 14, 2024 11:13 am Thanks for the feedback! Wings, I'm not sure about hammer vs. striker. I don't think I have the experience to identify any differences between the two actions. Do they really shoot/feel meaningfully different from one another?
Yes.

A hammer fired, single action can be nice and smooth, crisp, with a good break.

Strikers always feel like you're pushing a ten pound weight through a small tube with a sponge.

If you gave me a Glock, I'd sell it and use the money to buy a yellow dog. Then I'd shoot the dog.

And I love dogs.
:bow:
IMR4227: Zero to 900 in 0.001 seconds

I'm only killing paper and my self-esteem.

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