We took our friend out to our local sportsman’s club to practice with her Ruger LCR Double-Action Revolver (. 38 special), with Crimson Trace Laser sites last Saturday. First we adjusted the Laser to line up with the top of the sites in the 6 o’clock position. We braced the revolver on the bench and did some two-handed test firing. We shot up a box of rounds. By the end of the session, our friend was hitting a man-sized target at 30 feet, but not consistently. The laser, in daylight, was hard to see on the target, and she seemed to do better when I asked her not to aim with the sites, but to use instinct and general direction. There seemed to be a tendency for her to shoot low when taking time to aim.
My wife tried the LCR as well. She did better, but she also had a harder time with that than with our S&W M&P 9. Here, at Nesbit Guns, Jeff Nesbit showed me a little Beretta 21 Bobcat .22 LR Matte Black with a break front loader, for under $300, which might be the perfect concealed carry for the ladies. It is smaller than the Bersa and would fit in a pant’s pocket without much problem. It also has a safety. For some reason, I don’t like the idea of my M&P 9 concealed and pointing below my waist with no safety. And the Bersa was a little larger than I remember. Since the Beretta doesn’t have a slide, it is a good solution for our friend who fights carpal-tunnel syndrome.
Our friend has decided to keep the LCR and believes that it will be an effective pistol in close quarters in her home, and the Crimson Trace will frighten any intruder. However, because the Trace doesn’t always show up, depending upon how strong your finger grip is, you don’t want to be hesitating to fire because you can’t see the trace. Shooting should be second nature and much practice is needed to attain that instant reaction time. I found that when she was waiting to find the Trace, she was concentrating more on effects than upon purpose. Practicing the hesitation of waiting to see the light point is a bad habit. It is okay for testing alignment of shots, but not for regular practice.
– Jefferis Peterson