Cheap Guns.  While working as a defensive shooting instructor I saw a variety of handguns.  Now as a writer I’ve seen even more.  From under $200 to over $2,000.  Is there really a ten-fold difference?  Bookmark this page because we’ve got more the answer to more than 100 guns.

The answer is yes and no.  There are certainly values to be had, and the expensive stuff is sometimes just because of branding.  I’ve been burned by the cheap (Taurus) and pleased by the expensive (SPS), but that isn’t always the rule.  Although I’d love to just give you a list of cheapies to avoid and go after it’s not always that simple.  For example, I’ve had a terrible experience with Taurus, but that doesn’t mean that every gun they make it bad.  In fact, this brings up a solid point about gun reviews: They are a sample size of one.

Please keep this in mind when researching a purchase.  Any review you see out there may be sponsored, or have a bias, and even when it doesn’t the review is typically coverage by one person of one firearm.  The only person who can really tell you if a gun is any good is you.  You can narrow the field by finding what interests you, but it’s best to read multiple reviews before considering.  If looking for high-value I suggest being brand-blind.  Some of the lesser-known companies try the hardest to earn your business by providing excellent options at a lower price.  The risk with these brands comes to wondering if they will be around in five years, but does it matter?

The Zenith handguns are a great example of this.  Over the last couple of years they offered some incredible handguns at relatively low prices.  They’ve recently dropped their handgun line which means parts might be an issue, but not if you bought one of their 1911s.  Those guns readily accept most aftermarket 1911 parts.  Two other importers bringing in great value guns that accept readily-available parts are T R Imports and Tristar Arms.