Thursday, April 19, 2012

Over-thinking and over-researching..

I tend to overthink things. It’s not necessarily a bad trait, but for over a year, I’ve gone back and forth over which 9 mm to buy for myself. Narrowing my many choices about 8 months ago, I’ve been pretty much down to two, a Springfield XD-9 and a Glock 19.

I’ve gotten plenty of advice and plenty of opinions. You know what they say about opinions, and I agree, but I’m lucky to have friends with pretty much any firearm I could ever want to try, and they’re more than willing to let me play! I’ve gone in shops and handled both firearms. They’re quite similar, so much so that I’ve heard the Springfield called a Mock Glock, or a Glock copy. Each in itself is a fine, reliable firearm, and I’m sure I’d be happy with either. Frankly I’m just not that hard to please. If I pull the trigger and it goes bang..I’m happy. 

I’d talk to one person who’d say Glock all the way. Then I’d talk to a Springfield fan. I even had the opportunity to shoot both one day and STILL couldn’t decide. The main problem was probably that I liked them both! And someday, I'll have both, but I really needed to narrow things down and just buy one! 

In the end, it came down to a few little differences and some safety features. The Springfield XD has a very similar double trigger system to the Glock, which they refer to as the Ultra Safety Assurance (USA) trigger system.. Another feature that kept me going back to the Springfield, was the 1911 style backstrap safety, which ensures the firearm won’t discharge without a firm grip. Another feature is the striker status indicator which makes it visibly clear if the firearm is in the cocked position and is ready to go. These aren’t the only features that made the Springfield standout, but at the end of the day, after comparing, contrasting, over analyzing and spending WAY too much time researching, I bought the Springfield XD.

I had the opportunity this weekend to put about 100 rounds through it. It's an excellent firearm and I'm thrilled with my decision. The grip feels very natural in my hand. I still need to dial in my sights a little more as it's shooting a little low, but the fine tuning is half the fun. I'm sure there will be a Glock in my future someday, but for now, I'm thrilled with my choice of the Springfield XD-9.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Don't ignore the female'll lose a sale..

I don’t do well with the “old boys club.” Never have, never will. Especially when I’m the consumer.

Today my husband and I went to our local Sporting Goods Store for their annual “Mega Sale.” I’m in the market for a 9 mm so we figured we’d stop up and see what they had. I know I can get a little better of a deal online, but I’m happy to support a local business if I can. My choices have been narrowed down to a Glock 19 or 17, Springfield XD-9, and just recently I started to consider the Smith and Wesson MP9. All great, reliable firearms, all with pros and cons over the other.

Because it was a special event at the store, they had reps from various firearm manufacturers there. Springfield was the first rep we spoke with. I told him I had narrowed my shopping down to the 3 manufacturers mentioned above. I asked him to tell me why Springfield was better than the rest. He did a nice job explaining the features, asking me questions, and speaking to me and my husband professionally and respectfully. My husband asked a question about the Smith and Wesson, so the Springfield Rep took it out of the counter for him to see. Enter the Smith and Wesson rep, who must have smelled the M&P come out of the case, and he bee-lined over like a shark. I explained to him, the same thing I did to the Springfield rep, who stood beside him. I then asked him to explain to me why a Smith and Wesson would be a better choice for me.

Then he did it. The Smith and Wesson rep spoke down to me. Condescendingly. (Strike One). He then proceeded to show off his firearm and all of its bells and whistles..TO MY HUSBAND. (Strike Two). I interjected several times trying to make my point that the firearm would be mine. He continued to speak directly to my husband. (Strike Three..)

Now I understand that female shooters are very much in the minority. But I was there to buy. The Springfield rep did a great job giving me tips and asking me specific questions as he knew sometimes racking the firearm could be more difficult for a woman. He also said he saw immediately I would have no issue with that.

Bottom line is, male sales reps need to get with the times. I’m an educated consumer. Do not disregard me because I’m female. My gender has nothing to do with my ability to handle a firearm. I’m an NRA Certified Pistol Instructor, a Certified Range Safety Officer and I’m a consumer. Perhaps I should teach a course to salesman, about how to sell to a female consumer.

I’ll be picking up my beautiful new Springfield XD-9 as soon as my county pistol clerk adds it to my license, probably within a week. As a gift with my purchase, I got a Springfield hat, and a size was the smallest it came least my husband is happy, he can have the shirt..sigh..again..not very female friendly..