Newbie here, looking for some advice! :-)


PDA






TheSaint
April 20, 2006, 09:02 AM
Hi all,

I'm currently not a gun owner, nor did I ever intend to be just for the "sake of owning a weapon". Don't get me wrong, I'm not against those who wish to exercise their 2nd amendment rights, I just didn't think it was important to me. Well, sometimes your mind changes with time. Despite living in a fairly affluent community in California, the local police here have had a direct impact on how I view the situation.

Suffice it to say that we've seen a considerable increase of drug trafficking (pot and meth being the two top flavors of the day) at our schools and public places in recent years. The local cops response to my frequent calls to inspect suspicious circumstances is met with replies like "They'll probably leave in 15 minutes, don't be in such a rush." or "Are you sure they are actually selling this stuff, could you be mistaken?". I kid you not, a substantial faction within the local police do NOT want any part in active enforcement of anything more serious than handing out traffic violations to granny.

In short, if push came to shove and one of these dope peddlers ever encroached on my personal space or that of my family, we'd currently be found in a compromised position. We're a peace loving, law-abiding folk, but that doesn't mean we're going to be at the mercy of the merciless. To be honest, we'd rather be packing at this stage in the game than take our chances with the local law enforcement.

What we need is some advice for purchasing, learning and otherwise becoming familiar with guns from a personal security perspective. I'd like to buy a handgun that is relatively inexpensive, reliable and newbie friendly.

Here's a few questions that are in need of being answered if you get a minute:

1. We live in Atascadero, California -- Is there anything in particular I should know legally about owning a handgun in this state/county/city?
2. We don't have any small kids in the house.
3. What are your recommendations to first-timers just learning how to shoot?
4. What make/model do you recommend? I'm sure there is a lot of personal favorites and company fanboys (he we're all allowed to cheerlead right?!), but what unit best fits the needs listed above? (Cheap, dependable and not overly complex.) I've heard some good things about Glocks, but their model section is so enormous that I don't know where to start. I'm not limited to just them, but their name comes up often in discussion. Just shout out what you think is best.
5. If I've missed a huge how-to or FAQ already covering a considerable portion of the above, please free feel to slap me silly. I'm trying to be a educated gun owner, but have found a lot of other forums that are generally rather inactive. Just by looking at THR it looks like the community is fairly involved and that's something that is inviting.

Thanks in advance for any assistance you can provide!

If you enjoyed reading about "Newbie here, looking for some advice! :-)" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
El Tejon
April 20, 2006, 09:11 AM
Welcome to THR, new friend.:)

The police purposefully ignoring/underreporting crime? I am shocked!:D

Seek out a knowledgable friend. If no friend, seek out classes from the NRA or maybe a nearby gun range.

Handguns are teddy bears. We each have our own likes and dislikes as to what makes a good bear. Software trumps hardware, thus remember you are seeking to improve your skills which cannot be obtained by outright purchase.

TheSaint
April 20, 2006, 09:19 AM
Thanks for the reply.

The police purposefully ignoring/underreporting crime? I am shocked!

I try not to ge too down on them, as some of then are legit. Still, you can't take any chances.

Seek out a knowledgable friend. If no friend, seek out classes from the NRA or maybe a nearby gun range.

I have two friends who affectionately dub themselves "gun nuts", but both are into black power and muzzle loaders. Both own in excess of 25 guns each, but only own a few pistols, mostly WWII relics. These aren't exactly what I had in mine for personal defense, nor would I consider them the best advisors for such a mission. They are just old boys with toys. :D

We each have our own likes and dislikes as to what makes a good bear.

Oh come on, you can admit your favorite(s). :)

Keep the replies coming please! :D

Lupinus
April 20, 2006, 09:25 AM
Find some local ranges that rent pistols and try out as many as you can. CCW in cali isn't going to happen so just worry about what fits your hands best, what feels the most natural, and what you can shoot best with. In an automatic get at least 9mm, 45acp is better. In a wheel gun .38 special and up will do the job on your average underprivlaged youth.

Now it all varies from person to person but in my opinion you can not go wrong with a 1911 from any of the major makers. The Springfield Armory XD series is also a great set of pistols.

Also if we are talking strictly home defense you could always go with a shot gun. With a shotgun you are talking several hundred dollars less then you are a good pistol (two or three hundred and up in place of three/four/five hundred and up for a good pistol)

If you go the shotgun route for home defense go with a more short barreled version in 12 guage. Load it up with buckshot or slugs and you have a weapon no one wants to mess with.

Eleven Mike
April 20, 2006, 09:33 AM
Cheap, dependable and not overly complexThe usual answer to that is a double-action revolver in .38 Special. The double-action is the type where the cylinder swings out so you can load and unload all the cartridges at the same time. Just load and pull the trigger, no safety switch. If you want to spend a little more, get a .357 Magnum, because it will also fire the softer-shooting .38 Special.

If you want a Glock, just look for one in 9mm or .40 caliber. A .45 is more powerful, but for a beginner it is best to stick to lighter calibers that are easier to control. Since you are just keeping this gun at home, any model will do, although I would opt for the larger sizes, as they will be easier to shoot.

Another option is a shotgun, as they are very powerful, but they can be a little unwieldy. However, I prefer them for home defense. A semi-automatic 20 guage will be simple enough, but not too overwhelming.

Eleven Mike
April 20, 2006, 09:37 AM
With a shotgun you are talking several hundred dollars less then you are a good pistol (two or three hundred and up in place of three/four/five hundred and up for a good pistol)There are a lot of used revolvers out there for two or three hundred, but you might have some of your gun-nut friends check them for you, before you buy.

Keep in mind that if you need to walk your kid sister out to the car, or go outside for any other reason, you can't just stick a shotgun in your waistband, and cover it with your shirt-tail.

Missashot
April 20, 2006, 09:38 AM
Hi! And welcome to THR.:)
I know nothing about the laws there.:(
I would find a good indoor range where you can rent different types of handguns. Then I would try to find a nice gun shop. They should have a good idea as to what is legal and what is not.
As far as to the caliber, I would recommend at the very least a 9 mm. Ideally a .45 would be a better gun for stopping power.
If you are looking for an incredibly cheap gun, maybe a Rock Island Armory in .45 caliber would work for you. I have one, my husband,Kramer Krazy has one and my brother has one also. None of us have ever had a problem with any of them. All of ours shoot pretty accurately, and they are really cheap. I think the ones we bought were around $300.00 a piece.:)
Of course being the huge Smith and Wesson fan that I am, I would recommend a S&W anything!:neener: :D

Baba Louie
April 20, 2006, 09:43 AM
Welcome to THR TS
Standard answer... begin w/ a .22lr handgun. Practice practice practice. Perhaps an NRA class or two on basics, laws, etc.
Move up to either a .38 spl. revolver and/or a 9mm semi-auto... several good makers, Glock being one of them. G-17 and G-19 are always easy to shoot. 9mm ammo is somewhat cheaper than .38 spl.
Even if you cannot CCW (conceal carry weapon) it might behoove you to take a class and get an out-of-state license (FLA maybe?) for the training and certification that goes with it. Then again, maybe not.
Find a range that rents and has an NRA certified instructor, plan on spending a morning or afternoon turning money into noise and making holes in paper.
Learn the 4 rules...

Ruger makes reliable handguns
http://www.ruger-firearms.com/Firearms/index.html
S&W also
http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CategoryDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10001&catalogId=11101&categoryId=15701&top=Y
Taurus makes so many your head will spin... (think .38 or 9mm)
http://www.taurususa.com/main/index.cfm?CFID=2013468&CFTOKEN=78252155
You might try to find a good used S&W Model 10 and a Ruger MKII .22 to begin your training...

Have fun...
Stay safe. The police are there to record history after the fact. As you are aware, What happens when evil strikes you or yours is up to you and yours to decide and act, until the cavalry shows up of course... then THEY are in command.

GoRon
April 20, 2006, 09:47 AM
I would suggest a medium frame 357 revolver like the Ruger GP100 with a four inch barrel.

This will allow you to practice shooting cheaply as with the 357 revos you can also shoot 38 special ammunition.

The suggestion to go to the range and rent guns is correct, you will get a chance to shoot all the different styles of handguns to see what fits you best.

Definitely get training. The improvement I have experienced after getting instruction is dramatic, it also made range time more fun being able to hit what I was shooting at :D

Oh, and welcome to THR!

repsychler
April 20, 2006, 09:48 AM
Most of what I was going to say has already been said. Get some advice and instruction from a local range or gun club. They'll know the local laws better and will be there to assist you in the rather personal decision of which gun is right for you.
My personal pick is Springfield XD series pistols, but there are countless other fine pistols and revolvers out there that you may like better.

TheSaint
April 20, 2006, 09:52 AM
I've thought about the shotgun approach, but have turned it aside due to the fact that my bedroom isn't that large of a place and trying to use the thing in the middle of the night would seem hard at best. Correct me if I'm wrong? Heck the price seems tempting, but price isn't the primary concern of why I want a weapon. If that was the case wouldn't we all just purchase airsoft? ;)

If anything the leaning would be more towards a traditional automatic. A five or six shooter just seems like a small clip if there were multiple uninvited visitors. Granted, they are fairly small and less complex than their automatic counterparts, but a quality auto gives you something between the revolver and the shotgun? Not too big to make it hard to handle, not too small in terms of bullet capacity. Perhaps this argument has been beaten to death, but I'm a picky shoper.

Thanks again. :)

hso
April 20, 2006, 09:52 AM
You should contact Jim March as our Cali expert.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=191725

There's also various shoots/get togethers that would allow you to meet with fellow memebers and try different weapons and learn basic handling.

Do look for a course on legal and practical firearms self defense shooting.

Do not make the mistake of thinking that the gun is the only solution to a problem. When you need to use a gun (defending your life from a lethal threat) nothing else will do, but it isn't the only solution at times and it isn't even the best solution at times. Remember it's just a tool. It is a brute force tool at that and is the 'bigger hammer' solution.

Now a word of caution. Being pissed-off that drug dealers have come into your area and that LE is unresponsive isn't reason enough by itself to get a gun because you want to do "something" in response to your frustration. That you might encounter one of these low lifes isn't either. But, if you've calmly considered that drug dealers bring violent criminals into your neighborhood and that this is the threat you are concerned about then most certainly you need to learn to defend yourself and your family against that potential threat.

MedGrl
April 20, 2006, 10:05 AM
WElcome to THR. QUestions are always welcome and the poeple here are very knowledgable. I have a few suggestions for you.

First. Packing.org is a wonderful website that has a lot of good local gun regulations and laws. THey also list ranges and wether those ranges rent or not. I'd investigate California laws via Packing.org and there are a lot of THR members in California, they can probably give you more spasific answers if you need.

Seccond. Find a range near you that A) rents and B) has a handgun saftey course. If you can take a saftey course and try out a couple different modles and calibers before you get your gun it will be better suited to you. Also remember that after you get your gun to take it to the range and practice. A guin sitting in the nightstand that you have never fired does as more good as a club rather than as a firearm.

You've come to a good place to learn about guns. THR has helped me imensly and I've made some good friends through this site. Congratulations on joining the gun world. Don't be shy about asking questions.

GoRon
April 20, 2006, 10:06 AM
If anything the leaning would be more towards a traditional automatic. A five or six shooter just seems like a small clip if there were multiple uninvited visitors. Granted, they are fairly small and less complex than their automatic counterparts, but a quality auto gives you something between the revolver and the shotgun? Not too big to make it hard to handle, not too small in terms of bullet capacity. Perhaps this argument has been beaten to death, but I'm a picky shoper.


Being able to hit what you are shooting at is way more important than magazine capacity.

Even more important than that is knowing when it is appropriate to use such force.

That is why the above comment about software over hardware is so true.

A trained man/woman with a six shot revolver is not at much of a disadvantage.

Do you foresee yourself getting a lot of range time practicing? Each platform (auto/revo) has its strengths and weaknesses.

V4Vendetta
April 20, 2006, 10:11 AM
Welcome. Since you live in California & use the alias "TheSaint", I will assume you are Val Kilmer in disguise because you don't want the rest of anti-gun celebrities on your case. Don't worry. Your secret is safe here.:D

Seriously, I don't live in California so I'm not sure about your states laws regarding guns but I have heard a lot of other gun owners talk badly of California's laws so you might want to look them up before you go buying. www.chuckhawks.com has some good info about handguns for self defense. His favorite handgun for home & carrying was a Glock 19. It's a 9mm pistol. I saw on www.sportsmansguide.com that they have 19 round magazines for G19's but those are illegal in your state I think. Just be sure to check the laws in your state because the average cop isn't as funny or laid back as "LawDog". If you stick around enough, you might get to read his files.:)

antsi
April 20, 2006, 10:27 AM
A good place to start is an NRA Basic Pistol class. Find one in your area using this link:
http://www.nrahq.org/education/training/find.asp

As for recommendations on guns - it's okay to ask others their preferences, but remember this is a bit like asking us to recommend what vegetable you will like best. There are many quality brands of firearms: in revolvers, Smith and Wesson and Ruger are top choices. In semiauto pistols, Glock, SIG, CZ, HK, and Beretta are quality brands along with a boatload of companies making pistols patterned on the 1911 (think WWII Army pistol). They are all good quality firearms but you will have to try them and figure out what works best for you.

I would also consider what was said above about a shotgun. A shotgun is extremely effective for home defense. A pistol will require more practice, which is fine if you are interested in shooting at the range on a semi-regular basis.

Fire4Effect
April 20, 2006, 10:27 AM
my vote goes to the Taurus .357 8 shot revolver.
Of course you could always get a TAZER. I know it's not a firearm, but think of the entertainment value of watching the Bad Guy perform some unexpected breakdance moves till the police show up... :D

TheEgg
April 20, 2006, 11:48 AM
Welcome!!! One of the best ways to get answers to your questions is simply to read a lot of what comes up on this board. While confusing at first, it will quickly clear up a lot of your questions. In the meantime, you can go to the following link to find some courses in California.

http://www.nrahq.org/education/training/find.asp?State=CA&Type=

1. We live in Atascadero, California -- Is there anything in particular I should know legally about owning a handgun in this state/county/city?

I don't live in California, and am not real sure where Atascadero is, but here are some general comments. California is NOT the most gun-owner friendly state in the nation. There is a state wide assault weapon ban, even after the national one went away, so there are a lot of rifles like AR-15's and AK-47's you will not be able to own. In addtion, the state must "approve" handguns, so you are limited to those the state has on its list. You must have all gun purchases run through the state, even private ones. You must wait 10 days to pick up a new purchase. You must have an approved safety storage device. You must take a simple test at the gun store in handling the handgun before you can purchase it. You must pass a background check.

You CAN get a concealed carry permit in certain jurisdictions in California -- it is up to your local police chief/sheriff. It is his/her call. Some places are almost defacto shall isssue, others you can only get one if you are rich or contribute heavily to the right politicians.

The above are only some of the things you need to know. I hope some of our California members will come along and add/correct to my list for you.

2. We don't have any small kids in the house.

You still need to make sure that your weapons are properly secured when not in your possession. Safety first. Look at a decent fast access lock box, there are a lot of models out there.

3. What are your recommendations to first-timers just learning how to shoot?

Get structured instruction from someone who really does know what they are doing. I love my brother and sister gunnies, but there sure are a lot of us that like to tell people far more than we really know.:D

4. What make/model do you recommend? I'm sure there is a lot of personal favorites and company fanboys (he we're all allowed to cheerlead right?!), but what unit best fits the needs listed above? (Cheap, dependable and not overly complex.) I've heard some good things about Glocks, but their model section is so enormous that I don't know where to start. I'm not limited to just them, but their name comes up often in discussion. Just shout out what you think is best.

If this is your first handgun, buy a .22, like a Ruger MKII. Shoot it for about 6 months -- run at least 5,000 rounds through it. Then and only then shop for a center fire handgun. If you follow this advise, you will be a much happier camper.

Red Tornado
April 20, 2006, 12:19 PM
Don't automatically dismiss your friends because they just have "WWII relics" for their handgun collection. The 1911 and S&W .38 Special both predate WWII and are still excellent guns today.

Although they may not be ideal teachers, as you mentioned, you should still use them as a resource. See what they have. It may not be what you're after, but it will help you gain knowledge about various pistols and revolvers, which is always a good thing.

You've got lots of good advice already, and I won't add much except to mention that you might at least try to get a feel for a 18" barrel shotgun. It might not be as unwieldy as you think. YMMV. ;)

RT

'Card
April 20, 2006, 12:58 PM
In this thread you're going to get a lot of advice from a lot of people who are both smarter than I am, and who know more about the law in your state than I do - so I'm not going to intrude on their turf and add stuff that will probably just end up being redundant.

I do want to say this, however - Congratulations. The realization that you, and you alone, are responsible for protecting yourself and your loved ones is a big step. It's where you begin to distinguish yourself from the 'sheep' - people who think that the police somehow can protect them, when in reality all the police can do is show up after the fact, conduct an investigation, and hope to catch and punish the people who did the bad things.

Don't get me wrong - I'm not slamming the police. What they do is important, but it isn't protection and it isn't prevention. Protection and prevention is up to you, and you should be proud of yourself for accepting that responsibility.

akodo
April 20, 2006, 04:54 PM
3. What are your recommendations to first-timers just learning how to shoot?

Simple. a .22LR, either rifle, pistol, or revolver is an excellent learning too. Now, a .22LR may not be a serious defence chambering, but any gun is better than no gun, and any hit is better than a miss.


4. What make/model do you recommend? I'm sure there is a lot of personal favorites and company fanboys (he we're all allowed to cheerlead right?!), but what unit best fits the needs listed above? (Cheap, dependable and not overly complex.) I've heard some good things about Glocks, but their model section is so enormous that I don't know where to start. I'm not limited to just them, but their name comes up often in discussion. Just shout out what you think is best.

#1 buy a flashlight. #2 keep a charged cellphone within reach for dialing 911 #3 take a class or two so you know the legallities of when you can and cannot shoot, and to awaken you to what may happen if you do end up having to use a gun in self defence.



Lets go over some basic facts up front, handguns vs long guns.

Longguns are better list
-A longgun's longer sight radius makes it much easier to shoot accurately
-A longgun's shoulder stock allows for a much more secure and stable platform, making it easier to shoot accurately.
-a longgun's heavier weight dampens the felt recoil, making it easier to learn to shoot accurately
-a longgun's shoulder stock, when properly placed, puts the recoil in a better, more controllable place than a handgun.
-Once in the up and ready state, a long gun is just as fast, if not moreso, than a pistol on engaging new threats in the forward 180 degree arc.
-Using the same ammunition, a long gun will wring out more potential from that ammunition, with less muzzle flash to blind you at night.
-long guns can handle much more potent ammunition than handguns

Handguns are better list
-handguns are easier to conceal than long guns
-handguns are a little more convientent to carry around, concealed or otherwise.
-handguns can fit in a dresser drawer or nightstand or glovebox.


So, are you sure a handgun is what you want? True, you cannot tuck a rifle in your pants and walk someone (your sister lets say) out to their car. However, is that tactically the best descision? You and her are now both out in the open, the gun needs to be drawn before it can be used, and both of you will probably be damned close to whatever drug dealing freak is going to be causing trouble. (and where guns are concerned, distance and cover are your friends) Wouldn't it be just as safe, if not moreso, to stand in the doorway, rifle out of sight. If a criminal type runs up to her, you yell and step onto the front step with your rifle, to me that is more effective than yelling and attempting to pull the gun out from under your shirt when the guy is in knife range

There are some very nice rifles chambered in the same caliber as pistols. The idea here is that they would work well in conjunction with a pistol. They also have the advantage of being very light recoiling guns, to the extent they are very easy to learn on. As mentioned, they will recoil less than a handgun, and will allow you to shoot accuately.

Also, a decent 20 guage shotgun would be an excellent choice.

Regarding using a long gun in your home. Get a short 'long gun' something with a 16 inch barrel, or 18 inch for shotgun. These are acutally pretty easy to move around with, not that different from a handgun with arms fully extended in front of you. Either way, get your kids and get back in your bedroom or whereever, and call the cops. your job isn't to rid your house of badguys, your job is to keep your loved ones safe. That means getting them together, behind you, with you covering the door waiting for the police, not sneaking around the house like some sort of wannabe ninja. Yes, the whole idea behind owning your own gun is the police are reactionary and cannot be counted on to come to your rescue in time, but by getting your loved ones in a room and covering the door, you are reducing the likelyhood the badguys will stumble across them, and are stetting the engagement on your terms, so if the police do come too late, you are setting yourself up to win the potential gunfight.

http://www.ruger-firearms.com/Firearms/FAProdView?model=4701&return=Y

http://www.marlinfirearms.com/Firearms/1894centerfire/1894C.aspx

TheSaint
April 20, 2006, 06:45 PM
Wow, that's enough information to make your head swim. From legal advice, weapon selection to ROE. You folks are a wealth of knowledge! I'm going to try and see if my local range here in town has some type of primer for greenhorns. The closest NRA course is out of driving range due to my work/college commitments, perhaps an old-timer locally will help teach the ropes. I'm going to print out this thread and have them take a look at the suggestions so far and try to start narrowing down the choices. Once again, thank you for all the pointers.

ReadyontheRight
April 20, 2006, 07:26 PM
http://www.remington.com/images/products/firearms/shotgun/870marinemag[1a].jpg

Remington Marine Magnum.:)

If you want to spend less $$, a Remington 870 HD or any used 870.

vynx
April 20, 2006, 08:36 PM
Hi there. Check out Calguns.net

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/index.php

You will find people in the Paso Robles or San Lui Obispo area that will know of local ranges. Many ranges offer classes on firearm saftey and shooting.

Also, the local range may/should rent firearms. The best way to know what fits you best is to shoot a few hundred rounds through it. There are big differences between 1911 single actions, glocks, traditional double action pistols and double action revolvers. See what fits you best and what you shoot well with. Also, which features, safteys, etc. you like best.

Calguns.net also has a firearms for sale section. I've purchased off of there before. You can get handguns that are not on the California DOJ Current Approved Safty list - the only way to get some older classic guns such as the Colt Python is to buy them face to face (no shipping allowed) inside California - you still need to register them and have to let the FFL or Store hold them for 10 days before you can take possession.

NOt all new guns you read about are available in Cal. Your local range or gun store can give you the link or its on Turners.com they also have an online gun rack of used or consignment firearms. Sometimes you can find a real good deals but you have to be quick. (last week someone was selling a S&W model 60 stainless, 3 inch barrel, .357 for $300 - rated 98% - that was gone in one day)!

Too bad you are so far away or I would invite you to some ranges in the LA area.

Enjoy!

P.S. Its strange when I first read your info. on the Police I thought you lived in my neighborhood - they are exactly the same down here.

Eleven Mike
April 20, 2006, 09:20 PM
True, you cannot tuck a rifle in your pants and walk someone (your sister lets say) out to their car. However, is that tactically the best descision? You and her are now both out in the open, the gun needs to be drawn before it can be used, and both of you will probably be damned close to whatever drug dealing freak is going to be causing trouble. (and where guns are concerned, distance and cover are your friends) Wouldn't it be just as safe, if not moreso, to stand in the doorway, rifle out of sight. If a criminal type runs up to her, you yell and step onto the front step with your rifle, to me that is more effective than yelling and attempting to pull the gun out from under your shirt when the guy is in knife rangeSorry, Saint, if this is off-topic, but this seems like bad advice to give to anyone, especially to a "newb."

So, akodo, anyone who gets within twenty feet of kid sister, you're going to cover him with a long gun and yell "Stop!"? Or will you wait until someone actually grabs her and then let him use this hypothetical sister as a sheild? I mean, the bad guy might just run away, but what if he doesn't? What if The Saint lives in an apartment and the suspected drug dealers are in the hallway? Should he go from one corner to the next in some kind of travelling overwatch, and then stand there with the shotgun in the lobby of the building? Keep in mind, this would probably happen more than once, unless you get arrested and have your gun confiscated the first time.

First of all, let me say it might be best to just stay in the house, but if someone needs to go somewhere, we shouldn't let the criminals frighten us out of living our own lives. When a family member needs to walk out the door, it would make more sense to me to have someone else go along with him or her, if only because a lone person makes a more tempting target. Just having an additional person visible, especially an able-bodied male, makes violence less likely to occur. A hand can be kept on the weapon, if necessary.

Saint, have you considered getting a shotgun to keep in one room of the house, and a handgun to keep somewhere else? Opens up your options, somewhat. Then again, I guess two guns constitutes a dangerous arsenal in PRK. ;)

1911JMB
April 20, 2006, 09:36 PM
A 12 gauge is roughly 10 times more powerful than a handgun. Bar none, 12 gauges are the most powerful practical up close firearms. Living in the PRK, you couldn't carry a pistol anyway, so for home defense, I'm a +1 on getting a 12 gauge.

TheSaint
April 21, 2006, 05:42 AM
Perhaps I've been watching too many movies out of Hollywood over the years, but from the voices here it sounds like a shotgun isn't as hard to handle as I've imagined. Maybe the size/handling in my mind is playing tricks on me.

That means getting them together, behind you, with you covering the door waiting for the police, not sneaking around the house like some sort of wannabe ninja.

Point taken and remembered. I don't have a martyr's complex, nor that of a vigilante. God willing, you'll never see me on the news as 'another crazy gun owner' that the media likes to lambaste.

All of the gun owners that I've known throughout my 23 years have been ultra critical (and rightly so!) of people employing the use of guns in a careless manner. Not following safety rules or letting your ego get the best of you gives the rest of the community a bad name.

I'll try and live up to the code. There's much more reading to do it appears. :)

Browns Fan
April 21, 2006, 09:09 AM
I am suprised this thread has gotten this far before someone mentions the 4 gun safety rules!

1. Always treat a gun like its loaded. Almost every time an accidental discharge (AD) occurs, the response is, "I thought it was empty!"

2. Dont point the gun at anything you dont want to destroy/kill.

3. Always be sure of your target and what's behind your target. Bottom line- know where that bullet is going to stop.

4. Keep your finger off of the trigger until your sights are on target and you are ready to shoot. Another response to an AD is the gun just went off. WRONG! The gun went off because your finger was on the trigger. This is perhaps the most violated rule by noobies, because it is just a natural thing to put your finger on the trigger when you pick up a gun. Dont do it! Practice placing your finger along side of the frame of the gun.

Eleven Mike
April 21, 2006, 09:22 AM
Perhaps I've been watching too many movies out of Hollywood over the years, but from the voices here it sounds like a shotgun isn't as hard to handle as I've imagined. Maybe the size/handling in my mind is playing tricks on me.

A combat shotgun usually has a short barrel, 18 - 20 inches, so it's probably shorter than the guns your buddies are into - about forty inches, overall. It might feel clumsy at first, but you may get used to it.

Try as many guns as you can, and buy whatever appeals to you. Being confident in your ability to wield the weapon is pretty important by itself. It's also important to get something that you will want to shoot often, so that you will get better at shooting and so that handling and operating it become second nature.

If you enjoyed reading about "Newbie here, looking for some advice! :-)" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!