New gun converts new shooters!! (long)


August 18, 2003, 04:36 AM
I just got a new Bushmaster XM15 E2S (A3 upper, 16" barrel). Had a sale going at my local shop and I had a tremendous moment of financial stupidity. Oh well, it's good for this thread if not my marriage! :D

Anywho, simultaneously, a guy I work with who has 3 kids showed some interest in letting his youngest boy try out an inherited firearm at my range. His wife is MEGA anti, and only because it was inheritance did she let him take it believing erroneously that it was A: too old to shoot and B: the boy wouldn't really want to. Well, it's a 1930's Italian single-shot 20 guage in fine shape and the boy was dying to shoot something!

After begging and pleading with both mom and dad, they agreed he could shoot it if he found someone to show him how and a place to do it. I'm glad to oblige, so I told my buddy to bring his boy and his new gun out. His mom buried her head in sand for the day, I'm guessing. ;)

Well, to my surprise, all 4 showed up (dad and 3 kids). A 17 year old boy, 14 year old boy and 13 year old girl. More than I wanted to contend with, but since dad was there to reel them in, I went ahead.

I inspected his 20 guage (break-open), checked it out and it was fine to go. I test fired a couple and then broke out the Romanian .22 trainer for the kid(s) to learn on. I did all the 4-rules sermoning necessary, explained that when one was shooting, all 3 (dad included) were to be behind the line and me and only one at a time had a gun in his (or her) hands. They were great, very responsive, asked alot of questions, were enthusiastic and followed my instructions perfectly. I couldn't have had better students.

They loved the .22, each got instructions and shot a few mags at swinging targets, bullseyes and some old paint buckets. Then, after everyone was comfortable, we moved up to the Bushmaster. I had broken it in with 200 or so rounds the day before, and due to it's weight, size and sights, I felt it was a great "next step" gun from the .22. The kids all had a go after an "AR" tutorial. They LOVED it! :D I've never seen bigger grins on 3 kids faces, and dad was equally thrilled to shoot - this was his first time behind the trigger of anything bigger than a .22 or .25 pistol.

After a while of that, the youngest had almost forgotten he even had a shotgun, now it was onto the bigger recoil of the shotgun. He was apprehensive about it (he saw me shoot it), so the daughter offered to shoot in his place! Uh oh, the gauntlet of manliness had been thrown down! She shot it well, sent a paint bucket spinning along the ground. Now the youngest boy HAD to try it! :D

He shot his gun over and over, getting more and more confident and getting over his "flinches" like a pro. After 30 rounds of this, his shoulder sported a great purple stripe - the same bruise we've all received once or twice. He kept looking at it and admiring it like he had just vistited "Tattoo Charlie" on Tokyo Row!

Then, we cleaned his gun, the mess we made and spent the rest of the afternoon letting the kids ride my quad (they're seasoned pros at that, no lessons necessary).

All in all, a great day showing some new shooters the ropes and hopefully taking the "evil" out of guns for momma. I heard from my co-worker they came home glowing and gave her the "we did the 4-rules of gun safety" bit. Probably didn't sway her 100%, but he said she reluctantly acknowledged that she was glad they learned some gun safety.

Oh, here's the new gun (I gotta gloat!)

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August 18, 2003, 05:04 AM
Bully for you!
great job!

Its kinda funny that the AR15 (evil black rifle) is the logical training upgrade from the 22lr
Many folkes expect it to be a handful
but its a really sweet shooter

Now ya need to get their Mom behind the trigger

August 18, 2003, 10:37 AM
Say whatcha like about the AR , it's one user friendly piece of armament.

It's so damned hard to miss with it!

August 18, 2003, 08:09 PM
nice job swingset!
and nice gun!
hopefully that mom wont be able to stand up to the combined logic and passion of the three kid AND dad in their interest to shoot

Standing Wolf
August 18, 2003, 08:55 PM
Well doneā€”and don't be surprised when the mother shows up next time.

August 18, 2003, 09:10 PM
Good on ya! Might I suggest you invite them out again, before they come completely down from their "mountain top" experience ... and invite Mom as well! Pick up a box of clay birds and a hand thrower for the shotgun. My girls think shooting targets with .22s is okay, but shooting clays with the shotgun is great! I've observed the same with friends' spouses ... whereas they tend to object to rifles and handguns, the shotgun has a kind of appeal.

Very cool taking the AR, though. Reminds me of the time I was at the range with my then 11-year-old son (he's almost 17 now) and the local S.W.A.T. team was there practicing. One of the officers was recovering from an injury, so did the minimum shooting required, then walked down the line and ask me, "Sir, okay if I ask your son if he'd like to shoot my rifle?" Wow! Made his day ... and mine!

August 18, 2003, 09:12 PM
Wow !
You took on quite a load of newbies by yourself Swingset. done good.


August 18, 2003, 09:30 PM
Good job, swingset! That's an exceedingly positive first impression that will stick with them for life.

Nice rifle!

August 18, 2003, 09:37 PM
An autoloading .223 is probably the best introduction to centerfire rifle. Makes a lot of noise with a much higher level of target damage over the .22LR, but still very tame recoil and muzzle flash.

August 19, 2003, 01:43 PM

I gotta know, what was the Romanian conversion for the Shotgun or the AR?

If for the Shotgun, where did you get it???????

If for the AR, who makes it and tell us more.

4v50 Gary
August 19, 2003, 02:03 PM
are a good source for 2nd Amendment supporters. :D Well done swingset!:cool:

August 19, 2003, 03:34 PM
Dang, lucky kids. Wish I could've gone out shooting that young, and shot an AR to boot! I agree, a higher power .22(3) is a good step up from .22LR, as the way an AR is built really helps with recoil IIRC. And, always good to get them loving EBR's now, so they're not trying to ban them later! :D

I believe the romanian .22 trainer is a separate .22LR rifle...I think I've seen them in Shotgun News for about 50 bucks; thinking of getting one myself at that price.

AJ Dual
August 19, 2003, 03:57 PM
I gotta know, what was the Romanian conversion for the Shotgun or the AR?

If for the Shotgun, where did you get it???????

If for the AR, who makes it and tell us more.

He means a bolt-action Romainian .22LR training rifle. They've been coming in mil-surp for about $50 plus dealer markup. There was no conversion unit.

I have one, very accurate. Very inexpensive little 5 shot bolt action. CDNN, SOG, AIM, Century and the like have them.

Sometimes sporting goods chains like Big 5 or Dunham's will carry them in thier surplus rack for arround $65.

August 19, 2003, 04:33 PM
Ok guys, I too have seen them in Shotgun News. I didn't know that's what he was talking about. I once tried to get a neighbor of mine to get one so he could teach his kids to shoot. I doubt he ever does.

Thanks for the info.

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