Loaded chamber? Like father like son


December 21, 2006, 10:47 PM
I like to leave my pistol with an empty chamber when I go to bed. Never really thought to much of it until I was meddling around, scouring the house for old movies. HD Shotgun was under my father's bed - chamber empty and open, ammunition on the nightstand. I realized why I don't usually leave a chambered round in my gun at night. My father doesn't, never has done it unless he intended to shoot something that minute. I've just followed in his footsteps, not really thinking about why I did it.

Any of you see yourself copying the gun habits of your parents? Do you keep a loaded chamber or not on y'all's HD guns?

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December 21, 2006, 10:59 PM
No. My dad liked to keep his 1911 loaded with one in the chamber, but with the hammer down. :what:

I always kept my BHP cocked & locked.

And for the record, my Mossberg and my Walther are both loaded and chambered.

Anna's Dad
December 21, 2006, 11:27 PM
Definately not. To my knowledge, my father never owned a gun!

December 21, 2006, 11:27 PM
Guns are ready to go - loaded w/ one in the chamber. When my son was younger, shotty was out of reach & pistol was in lock box. Now that he knows how to shoot and knows how to handle the guns in the house the only real difference is that he's tall enough to reach the shotgun & he knows the combo to the box :D

December 21, 2006, 11:33 PM
When hunting this year my dad was surprised I was carrying my 1911 cocked & locked. I just said "that's how it's supposed to be carried".

December 21, 2006, 11:41 PM
My Grandpa kept his semi-autos loaded, but with the chamber empty. Daddy has tended towards doing the same way. I broke the pattern when I got my first 1911A1; I went with cocked and locked. I wouldn't carry a .45 any other way because it's the only way to get one into action one handed easily in a hurry. This ain't in genetics but rather in point of view vs. alellomimetic (sp?) behavior.

Let Us Reason
December 21, 2006, 11:49 PM
I've heard some conservative radio talkshows suggest that some popular communist organizations are fronting as defenders of our civil liberties when all along their longterm agenda is to distroy such groups as the NRA and others. Is there anything to this?

December 21, 2006, 11:52 PM

December 21, 2006, 11:52 PM
LUR, If your question is legitimate and you're not a troll, and I'd like to give you the benefit of the doubt and the opportunity to prove you're not one, I suggest you start a separate thread on this topic in Legal and Political.

December 21, 2006, 11:52 PM
i keep my hd handgun locked and loaded as well as my carr gun, at all times, there is a 20rd mag in my ar, and 6+1 in my remington 870 but there are no rds in he chamber of the ar and shotgun. but they c be brought into play really quickly.:)

December 22, 2006, 12:17 AM
Definately not. To my knowledge, my father never owned a gun!same here:uhoh:

December 22, 2006, 02:21 AM
I'm definitely not like my parents, their both gun grabbers. I keep my house guns, a 92fs and a 870, chambered.

December 22, 2006, 03:08 AM
Some people have a tendancy to move around a lot when they sleep. For them it might not be a good idea to have a gun at the ready within easy reach of their sleeping area. I believe we had a thread here in which several members indicated that they had woken up to find that they had cocked pistols or taken off safeties while sleeping with no memory of doing so. I can understand them having a gun in condition three, or even completely unloaded.

Edit - Looks like we have had a couple threads on this phenomena.



http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=31731&highlight=sleepwalking (<- thats the one I remembered)

December 22, 2006, 08:54 AM
I read all three of those threads you listed c_yeager, and I have one simple comment: How can individuals credibly believe that you would have the muscle memory to remember a sequence of button pushes to unlock a safe, and yet NOT possess the muscle memory of not pointing a gun at oneself? Since I do not make a habit of pointing weapons at myself while awake, I find it difficult to imagine a dream or hypnagogic state where I would ever do so. Possibly I might grab the gun under my pillow and point it at a dream, maybe, but not myself.

While the points everyone made were very good, i've never discovered my Beretta anywhere but under my pillow where I left it, always with the safety on. Ive never awoken touching it. Ive never knocked it off the bed, and I move about very energetically in my sleep. This is why I dont feel terribly uncomfortable leaving a round in the chamber.

Since I live alone in a reasonably unsafe neighborhood, I trust my just-awakened judgement enough to prefer to have it loaded and ready at all times while asleep, just in case.

December 22, 2006, 09:30 AM
My Dad never kept a gun loaded in the house. In my home, all centerfire handguns are loaded and ready to go at all times, all autos with a round in the chamber. And all guns are to be considered loaded until cleared by whoever might be looking at one. ANYONE who might not know how to clear one is taught then and there. That's one of the rules I taught my sons from a very early age. AND, I will not hand a loaded gun to anyone period!!

December 22, 2006, 09:35 AM
Let Us Reason? Sounds like a troll to me.

There is only one way to have firearms in the home: Loaded to the magazines max, rounds chambered, safeties on and the assurance of fresh batteries in all electronic sights. The major firearms can be vaulted, but you better have one on you to help you get to that vault.

In the event of a break-in, you won't have time to unlock vault, load, etc. By then, you'll see talking with Jesus about your flawed strategy. Has anyone tried their strategy? Have a friend or family member pretend to break in. Sit you "self" on the sofa, watching TV or reading a book. Believe it or not, most adults are fully capable of kicking in a door. It is simple pine construction in most cases, not reinforced steel. See how far you can get before the person "tags" you with a red crayon.

I noted such a similar test i the airplane defense scenario. As a TKD instructor, we engaged in tons of professional research, video recorded the scenarios and reviewed them, modified and tried again. Try it. See how far you do not get.

On a related matter, and horridly deceptive to the buyer, has anyone else seen the commercials on television about these home defense systems (I think Brinks)? The bad guy kicks the door open and the alarm sounds. So horridly scared by the alarm, the bad guy runs back out the door, and the people from the security system calls:

Security: "Is everything okay?"

Home owner: "No, someone is trying to break in".

Security: "Don't worry. We're sending help!"

Hello?! Hello?!?! Is anyone (cognitively) home up there? After testing your reaction time as I have described briefly above, you will think twice (I hope) about locking ALL of your firearms in a vault and leave them unloaded.

In closing, anyone else hear on the news this past week what is the most common break in time over the past few years? Supper, as in while the family is at the table. That seems to answer the why carry in the home.


December 22, 2006, 10:17 AM
I leave my XD unloaded in the nightstand near the bed with a full mag next to it. If someone breaks it, i figure Ill have enough time to insert the mag and rack the side.

December 22, 2006, 10:27 AM
My Dad keeps loaded (fully loaded) guns at arms reach... so do I... so, yep, I agree! "Like father, like son"

December 22, 2006, 10:29 AM
My father grew up on a farm and actually had some poor gun habits (never cleaned his guns, when he cleaned handguns and rifles he would insert the rod at the muzzle end of the barrel damaging the crown, my parents lived on the second floor and every gun was kept in the basement, etc). Over time, my brother and I have corrected most of those habits, or at least the big ones.

PS- You should keep one in the chamber :)

December 22, 2006, 10:40 AM
If they're in the safe, unloaded. Otherwise cocked and locked. My dad wasn't much of a gun person. He likes firearms, but he just never got into it. I got my 'habits' from my brother. He got his from they guy that introduced him to deerhunting.

December 22, 2006, 11:00 AM
Cocked and locked. I wouldn't carry on an empty chamber, why would my house gun be any different?

December 22, 2006, 11:12 AM
Dad kept his S&W 9mm in his office, in a locked file cabinet, unloaded. Only handgun in the house when I was a kid.

Living with no kids, I have loaded guns in easy reach. Might re-think that when I have kids, but not an issue now.

December 22, 2006, 11:35 AM
I keep my home defense weapons in the same condition I was trained in the military, i.e., it depends on the weapon.

Shotgun, rounds in magazine, slide forward, selector on safe. Requires two distinct operations before it's ready to fire, rack slide, place selector on fire.

AR, no round in chamber, magazine in well, bolt forward, selector on safe. There is actually a good reason for this. Since the firing pin in an AR is free floating, having a round in the chamber can lead to an accidental discharge if the weapon is hit at the right angle with sufficient force even if the safety is on. This actually happened to a troop in my old squadron, so I have personal knowledge that this is not a myth. (He dropped his M-16 down the ladder of the LSB on an alarm response to a missile site. It hit butt first, chambering a round without his knowledge. Later, at the LCF, he accidentally dropped it while preparing to clear it at the clearing barrel. Round went off, striking him in the outer right thigh. He was relieved of duty and discharged shortly thereafter. Can't have such clumsy people carrying firearms around nuclear weapons. :uhoh: This happened in the late 80's at Warren AFB.)

Handgun, however the weapon is designed to be carried. SA autos, cocked and locked, DA or DA/SA, round in the chamber, decocked if necessary. I don't use DA/SA handguns with safeties for concealed carry or home defense. If I need a handgun, I need it NOW. DA revolvers, all cylinders loaded.

My reasoning is thus:

If I should wake with an intruder in the room, I have a S&W Model 65-3 loaded with Federal Hydra-Shock .357's in a holster attached to the frame of my bed where I can easily reach it. There's an inexpensive Brinkmann lithium flashlight in a holder next to it (great buy, $20 at wallie world.) I have immediate firepower that won't get clogged in the bed clothes like an auto might and won't be pushed out of battery at contact distances.

Leaning against the head of the bed next to that is my Mossberg 500 Persuader with a regular stock, 7 rounds of #1 buck in the tube, 6 slugs in the sidesaddle and a lithium light attached. Slide is forward on an empty chamber, selector is on safe.

My wife keeps her S&W 640 on her side of the bed in her purse, which she always places next to her before retiring.

We keep our cell phones on chargers on the night stand on either side of the bed.

The drill is, if we are awakened by the dogs barking or the sound of an intruder somewhere in the house, whichever one of us wakes first grabs a handgun and flashlight, wakes the other, and we assess. If there is time, I grab the 12 gauge, we take cover and watch the hallway outside the bedroom while she calls the local PD on a cell phone.

Generally, by this time my GS will be going nuts and trying to eat whoever happens to be inside my house without being invited. I know the guys at the local PD since I've worked with some of them before, so they know what my plan of action is. This is one of the essentials to any HD plan. Even though I'm LE, I am not about to go on a house clearing expedition with no backup. If there's only one officer on duty(it happens in small towns) I'll have him back me up while we clear the house. If we've waited this long, I'll have had time to put on my boots, vest and duty gear before he gets there.

P.S. We don't have any kids, so I don't have any need to go rescue one of my own. It will be a vastly different situation if you do have loved ones in other areas of the house, so I highly suggest you get some professional training if this is the case.

December 22, 2006, 11:52 AM
Last night at around 0030hrs my driveway alarm #1, #2 and then #3 went off and the dogs started raising he**. I rolled out of bed and looked out the window where the outside lights had come on (linked to driveway alarms) and watched a large tow truck come up the hill to my house. I put on my robe, opened the drawer in my night stand, handed my wife my XD45 and grabbed my all steel full size (rather large) Witness 10MM. By the time the truck had reached the top of the driveway the dogs and I were out the back door running around the house to come up behind the truck. My wife covered the front of the house from the bedroom window and when the driver got out he was blinded by the outside lights (total of eight 300 watt floods) and my wife was in shadow. The driver held up a paper in front of his face and called out that he was looking for an address half a mile down the valley from us. By then my dogs were standing less than two feet from his buttocks and I was ten feet behind them. I told the driver (I had checked out the truck cab and found it empty) where the address he was seeking was located and he about jumped out of his skin. He turned and the dogs growled. I told the dogs to shut up and he finished turning towards me when he saw the 10mm at my side. He informed me he was a reposessor and was on a legal job and didn't want any trouble. I laughed and told him since he didn't want any we wouldn't give him any and the dogs proceeded to sit down and wag their tails when they heard me laugh. It took me over an hour to calm down and get back to sleep. ALL MY FIREARMS ARE LOADED TO THE MAX AND CHAMBERED.
If I had to fumble with loading mags and charging weapons out of a sound sleep I'm not sure what the outcome would be.

December 22, 2006, 12:12 PM
my father never owned a gun!

Ditto here

December 28, 2006, 05:53 PM
My parents are semi-anti, though my father is coming around in his older age.

December 28, 2006, 08:42 PM
I usually do not have a round in the chamber. If I am going somewhere I feel there may be trouble or get into a situation I feel calls for it I go cocked and locked, but that is not often. Back in my exuberant youth there were more times when I would feel the need as I traveled more side roads than I do now, as it were.

December 28, 2006, 08:46 PM
A defensive weapon should be ready for use at a moments notice. There is no way I want to have to think about getting my firearm into battery under stress when mine or my families life depends on it. Always have one in the chamber on my defensive weapons.

December 28, 2006, 08:47 PM
#1 I have a German Shepherd Dog who will go nuts in the middle of the night.
#2 The BG doesn't have the advantage that I have in my house, I know the layout and I have a dog and a shotgun.
#3 Wife has phone and calls the local cops.
#4 BG I feel sorry for the BG

December 28, 2006, 11:12 PM
As a kid, none of the firearms were defensive guns...at least not openly. All were hunting and plinking guns. Nothing was kept loaded, but ammo was in easy access.
We must admit, generally, things are different from the 60's. It seems most of us, (after reading various threads and posts), are a little more than aware of the crime problems around us. So for some to keep guns in a more ready state is not surprising.
I, personally, keep several ready. Bad things happen fast.

December 29, 2006, 12:15 AM
My parents were frightened of firearms, yet all my brothers and I feel the same way about CCW and Home Defense. Quite a twist.

I have kids at home who bring their friends to the house etc. My own habit is to carry cocked & locked while outside the home and to put my "outside" firearm away (but close to where I"m at in the house) with a loaded mag but nothing in the chamber.

If the doorbell rings or my two dogs alert to the arrival of someone, the gun goes into my hand, shifts to Condition One and is behind my back when we go to the door.

Like others on THR, I've taught my kids "the rules" many times over and have been very pleased how they observe them both at home and when they go with me to the range. Yet I have to be cautious about their friends who come to the house. We've never even come close to having any 'accident' but the cost of that is constant vigilance when there are young ones about.

I'm curious about how other THR members balance home defense with child safety. I believe my wife and I have a pretty handle on it, but I'd be pleased to see what methods others use.

December 29, 2006, 12:26 AM
I'm curious about how other THR members balance home defense with child safety. I believe my wife and I have a pretty handle on it, but I'd be pleased to see what methods others use.

Since I have kids in the house I'm forced to keep my defensive weapons locked in a locked handgun box. It's ready to fire once I get it out of the box.

December 29, 2006, 01:26 AM
my entire family thinks I'm nuts for keeping my 870 locked and loaded next to my bed..

I think he's nuts for keeping his duty pistol in his bedroom dresser ~10ft away, unloaded, and a snubby .357 in the kitchen cabinet downstairs by the back door loaded.

makes no sense to me. I'll give him this, though.. everything wakes him up at night.

I, on the other hand, have been known to sleep through hurricanes (literally...)

December 29, 2006, 02:00 AM
...Always keeps a Glock loaded with nothing in the chamber. I keep a fully loaded revolver most of the time so I don't have the "cocked and locked" issue. I find revolvers are better for HD since they can't get jammed and will work under pretty much any condition.

December 29, 2006, 04:43 AM
Captain Mike,
You asked about kids. I have two. 11 and 5. Both Spider Jane and I work under the assumption that you cannot child-proof a firearm, you have to firearm-proof the child.

If I am vertical, I have a firearm. On my side. At night it is on the bedstand, condition one.

11 year old daughter is a developing trap shooter and dove hunter with her own shotgun. She has no interest in handguns right now. I trust her judgement around firearms because she has proven herself time and time again. I worry less hunting with her than I do with some folks my age.

5 year old boy is into everything, and can't wait to start hunting. He is focused on turkeys and tree rats. If he asks to see anything in the safe, he and I go take a look. He hasn't bothered to ask about the "nine-eleben" I carry in a long time. It is always there, and he just takes it in stride that I always have it. He can quote the four rules, and has been able to do so since about age 3. We insist that he demonstrate the 4 rules even with his cap guns, it is a good way to keep an eye on his level of understanding. I will add that some of our best time together is spent cleaning guns and reloading.

I guess what I am trying to say is, it is just part of our lives. I have done everything I can to take the mystery out of firearms, be it for recreation or life and death situations. I make sure that there is range time for all four of us, together.

Take this for what's it's worth, it works for us right now. If the 5 year old were to change his behavior even slightly, I do have a quick safe for use at night.

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