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  • Need CCW permit advice's the story. I'm a 42 year old female desiring a CCW permit in Florida for a variety of reasons, all privately discussed with LE. I'm told I have legitimate reasons to acquire one. I am not a felon or (diagnosed [Wink] ) a crazy person. Hubby & I love to target shoot & I'm quite proficient with his S&W 9mm, although I've never taken a combat pistol course. I have the following questions..

    1. The do cops feel about properly trained & licensed civilians carrying firearms?

    2. I'd like something a little more subtle in the way of a pistol. That 9 mm is heavy, but I still want stopping power. Perhaps a smaller caliber pistol with a better load?

    3. Recommendations for a good place to carry? Keep in mind that I'm in shorts & tee shirts most of the time. I'm not too crazy about having to dig around in my purse for my weapon, in the heat of the moment. I keep everything but the kitchen sink in there.

    4. Should I take the pistol combat courses?

    5. Are there any "watchdog" agencies who certify the CCW permit class instructors? It bugs me that this state only requires a 3 hour class for a CCW permit. I'd like better.

    Any thoughts, suggestions, constructive criticism, etc., would be greatly appreciated. This is not a decision I take lightly, as I am fully cognizant of the responsibility that comes with the ability to deliver lethal force. I am an Army trained nurse and have seen my share of GSW trauma.


  • #2
    1. Most Officers, myself included, have NO problem with a properly trained and competent individual carrying a concealed weapon.

    2. How about a compact 9mm? There are some smaller 9mm's around. The LadySmith comes to mind, as does the Glock 19 or 26. They are out there, you may have to look. Also a .380 can be quite effective.

    3. There are purses made with a built-in holster, or fanny packs are handy items. Bra holsters, belly bands, or even a shoulder rig under a loose T-shirt would work.

    4. Yes, any additional training and practice wouldn't hurt.

    5. I don't know for sure about Florida, but there should be. See my answer to #4.

    You appear to have the right attitude toward the responsiblilty that goes along with CCW. Training and practice are the most important considerations, IMHO.

    Good luck!


    • #3
      You don't need "legitimate" reasons to defend yourself. That's like requiring you to have beforehand knowledge of having a car wreck in order to have insurance. States that don't allow ccw are criminal.


      • #4
        You might also think about a revolver, such as a .38, or even a .357 for more stopping power. I recommend the .357. If it has too much kick for you, you can also just load it with .38's. The reverse is not true however, so be careful. Revolver's are nice since they are reliable and simple to use. I carry a Taurus .357 with a 2" barrel in an Uncle Mikes inside the waistband holster. This holster is nice because it also fits very nicely inside my front pocket. I often carry wearing only shorts and a t-shirt with the gun in the holster in my front pocket and you can't even tell I am armed.

        As far as the courses to take, I would recommend taking as many as you can afford, and have time for. The more training you have, the better prepaired you will be in a real situation. However, I would disagree with those that feel it should be a requirement for someone to take x amount of classes before being allowed to purchase a firearm. I would have less of a problem with it if the law allowed the purchase, but required some training within the first 6 months or year. Unfortunately, a lot of people wait to purchase their first firearm until they are in fear from a threat. At that point, there is no time for waiting periods and mandatory training classes.


        • #5
          Answers to your questions...

          1. No problem. A lot depends on where you are at.
          Most cops realize that the CCW holders are not part of the problem and statistics prove that CCW holders are amongst the most law abiding group that there is.

          2. I would reccomend no less than a .380, my theory is to use the biggest caliber that you are comfortable with. You should have no problem with a .38 Special.

          3. I do not reccommend carrying in a purse. If somebody snatches it, you protection is gone. If you leave it somewhere, you are responsible for it no matter what happens.You may want to go with a size bigger britches, to carry in the small of the back or in your waist.

          4, Definatly. If you can afford it, it will help your shooting skills. Its pays to shop around and get informed opinions. Some cater to proffesionals, some to people of lesser skill, some have better courses for women than others.

          The CCW instructors course is different in each state. In my state, I had to be an NRA Personal Protection Instructor (I was)or a Certified Police Instructor.After that,you must take a state sponsered test administered by the State Police,make a passing grade, submit an outline for course material and be fingerprinted and background checked. They have a minimum 5 hour course of instruction for CCW and there are several topics that must be covered.Only then are you issued an instructor number and then you must remain active.

          Some of my personal observations from training lots of woman for CCW over the years that you may find of help.

          If you do not fire handguns on an occasional basis,or if you know little of firearms, or if you only intend to carry without at least practicing a few times a year, use something simple. I reccomend a stainless steel 5 shot .38 Special revolver. There is no safety to mess with, you simply pull the trigger to shoot. It sounds simple, but in a life threatening situation, simple is better.

          Stainless Steel doesnt rust much,an occasional wiping will go a long way to keeping it funtional.
          If you must keep it in a purse, put it in a holster that will keep the revolver from flopping around in the purse. It will also keep things like loose aspirin, pens and pencils, bobby pins, and what not from getting caught in the barrel and possibly gumming everything up. Stainless Steel will take abuse from perfume, melted lipstick, and some medicines much better than a blued steel pistol will.

          A small semi auto pistol may take a bit more hand strenth than you have. Many women are OK when they have to cycle the slide a few times but in the live fire course, some get too tired to be able to manipulate the slide. If your hands get to tired to shoot the fifty or so rounds that the course requires, you will not pass the course unless you can satisfactorily shoot the whole course.

          Long fingernails can be a hindrance when tring to cycle the slide. I have seen them break or even peel back. I know that it hurts. The class is not the time or place to figure that out.

          If you only need a few hours of training to complete the course and are unfamiliar with firearms in general, get a knowledgable individual to explain and demonstrate the basics before you attend the class. A little up front can make the course alot more understandable and of more benefit to you. Dont be like some in the class and handle your firearm for the first time in the class.

          Above all, become proficent with it. Practice,practice,practice.Make sure you understand the law and the use of deadly force. Know where you can tote and where you cant. Never ever leave the firearm where an unauthorized person can handle it.

          Good luck.

          If I can be of more assistance, PM me. Im happy to help,I know that one can be overewhelmed with information at first.


          • #6
            I can't add anything to what these folks have already said.


            • #7
              "You might also think about a revolver, such as a .38, or even a .357 for more stopping power."

              I respectfully disagree that either a .38 or .357 has inherently more "stopping power" than any other cartridge.

              Any "stoping power" is completely contingent on shot placement and several other variables. (Ferinstance..a .22 to the head that interrupts the CNS causing immediate physical incapacitation has demonstrated "stopping power" while a .44 Magnum that merely grazes the thigh and provides no physical incapacitation has shown little.)

              Especially in the snubby versions of popular revolvers as the extremely short barrel can bleed off just enough velocity to cause termianl performance issues.

              Additionally, the recoil of a lightweight snubby can make accurate rapid fire a real challenge.

              Modern bullet designs currently provide several good choices for defensive ammunition in any of the major service calibers. (9mm or greater).

              IMNSHO, the .380 offers only marginal performance.

              .38 and .357 revolvers are excellent weapons. The snubbies provide a very easily carried package. However, there are trade offs.

              My personal recommendation would be to carry at least a 9mm in a semi-auto that is ultra-reliable and that you are able to shoot accurately and rapidly.

              The point of carrying a weapon is to be able to defend your life or the lives of others. Choose something suitable for that purpose by choosing a reliable weapon, proper defensive ammunition, and then learning how to use the weapon properly.

              My two cents.. the Glock 19 is a great all around weapon. However, there are many other very good ones out there. Much of it has to do with personal preferences.


              • #8
                Y'all are great! I've been thinking along the lines of something in stainless, since I'm not the best at keeping anything, including my mind, clean.

                As for the purse thing, if I were to carry in my purse, I might as well just leave it in the purse is that bad! "Excuse me, Mr. Bad Guy...Could you hold my billfold, my checkbook, makeup case & tampons while I get my gun?"

                I'm gonna keep watching this thread for more advice and opinions, so keep them coming.


                • #9
                  You could just poke him in the eye with a tampon!


                  • #10
                    "Oww! Gentle applicator my *****, lady!"


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by BeatleFan:
                      Y'all are great! I've been thinking along the lines of something in stainless, since I'm not the best at keeping anything, including my mind, clean.

                      If you're concerned about weight, stainless may not be the way for you to go. Guns made totally out of stainless steel tend to be a bit heavier than guns that have an aluminum or polymer frame. I've never had a problem with my guns rusting, and I only clean them after I shoot. As long as you use good products, you should be fine. Many modern firearms such as Glocks and HKs are very rust resistant to begin with.

                      I tend to think a 9mm semi-auto would be a good choice. Try looking at the SIG P239 and the G26. Revolvers are easier to operate, however a snubnose .38 has much more recoil and requires more practice to shoot accurately. A .380 should work for you too if you don't like the 9mm. The SIG P232 is a nice gun. I'd stay away from anything smaller, such as .22, .25, or .32.

                      [ 04-07-2003, 01:09 AM: Message edited by: PatrickM98 ]


                      • #12
                        About that purse: You can find a fine selection of ladies purses in gun shops that are in all aspects, a nice purse. They have a velcro closure along the middle seam, that opens to reveal an inner compartment, that would hold only the pistol. You access your pistol in seconds, without going through the purse contents, and the pistol is never in contact with the purse contents.

                        Cost is about $20.00 for low end small purse, up to $50.00 for calf leather.

                        Jim Burnes


                        • #13
                          BeatleFan: You may also want to check out

                          and the "Concealed Carry" section of


                          The site in particular is devoted specifically to all things related to CCW.

                          Good luck and stay safe!


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