Crossing over into gun ownership - advice please.


November 10, 2008, 12:32 AM
Well, I'm about to cross the line into gun ownership. Forgive the long post.

For a long time now, I've been the lurker at the gun range (and THR) on my rather occasional visits there, mostly to shoot the firearms of friends and occasionally to rent a .22 pistol. As a graduate student, I just never have had the money for firearms of my own, let alone for ammunition.

Now, however, with the likelihood of a ban, I have seen fit to take out a higher amount than I usually would in student loans to acquire firearms and ammunition. I have fired a wide variety of handguns and long arms (being the perennial moocher at the range has allowed me to get a broad if shallow level of experience), so I base these decisions on personal - albeit limited - experience.

The list presently is:

Sig P226 9mm
Mossberg 590 A1
Colt 6920
PTR-91 F

(All will be NIB for warranty and other purposes.)

At this time, I am focusing on purchasing weapons most likely to be limited by a new AWB. As such, I have chosen the weapons above based on quality, capacity, their use of military calibers, and "scariness". This is my "piss off the Democrats" list more than anything, as I plan to purchase a 1911 for carry - and another for home defense - when the time comes (although the Mossberg and the Sig certainly provide the capability for effective home defense immediately). An M1 Carbine and an M1 Garand are also on the long-term list, so I can show my children the types of weapons their great-grandfather trained with long, long ago in the Second World War.

I presently have on hand (or in the mail) a half-dozen AR-15 mags, a half-dozen P226 9mm mags, and a dozen G3 mags for the PTR-91. I hope to double this stock over the next month. I also plan to purchase a suitable amount of ammunition for each weapon (whatever money is left will go to ammo), and a few grips deemed too "scary" for the Mossberg.

The above already carries a rather high price tag - very high - and will stretch me near my limits of my budget. But I can't help but feel that I'm missing something.

Let's say I can spend $1,000 more. That's a bit of a stretch, actually, but given the upcoming ban I'm willing to incur even the evil of credit card debt temporarily to keep my rights safe. What else is likely to be banned, and what else should I get immediately while I still can? I do not live in a state with any significant bans on firearms, and to my knowledge only Federal laws apply.

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November 10, 2008, 12:41 AM
That's a pretty good list. an AK-47 is another "scary" rifle you may want to look into. While a plethora of weapons are in danger, the AK is the captain of the team. It's name is the scariest sounding is the weapon Obama specifically names when discussing the AWB. But if you want a comprehensive list go here:
This is the last AWB bill that they tried to pass and a new one would probably look similar. Good luck to you!

Also, if you need to save a little money, you can skip the handgun for the time being. Everybody needs at least one good pistol but those are unlikely to be attacked until much further down the road. If you are settled on a specific pistol, just buy some of the high cap mags (10+ rounds) as those will disappear with an AWB and pick up the actual handgun when you can better afford it.

November 10, 2008, 12:51 AM
If you want to have the bases covered, so to speak, you might add an AK-pattern rifle to your list. I'll start by suggesting a Yugo underfolder; they're well-built, and the underfolding stock is one of those "you don't need to have that" features that, well, simply makes it more appealing to those of us who would say "why not?" ;)

I am curious as to what you mean by

a few grips deemed too "scary" for the Mossberg.

If you're referring to a rear pistol grip, don't. A search here will yield an ample number of arguments (by such people as Dave McC - okay, especially Dave McC) as to why not. If you mean a vertical foregrip, eh - personal preference, I suppose, but don't expect it to add any appreciable advantage to handling.

Honestly, I'd drop the Sig and concentrate on evil black rifles and high-cap magazines if your sole purpose is to "beat the ban." The Sig (and all other handguns) will still be available post-ban; it's the magazines you'd want to stock up on prior.

November 10, 2008, 12:55 AM
Tactical Ninja, All you had to say was +1. ;)

It looks like we agree on a course of action for this gentleman.

November 10, 2008, 12:58 AM
Strange - the timestamp on your post is ten minutes before mine, but when I entered the thread a few minutes ago there weren't any responses. Your post only appeared after I'd submitted mine and the page had refreshed.

Anyway, yup, it would appear we have a consensus ;)

Prince Yamato
November 10, 2008, 12:59 AM
Concentrate on the rifles. The pistols are protected under Heller (though hi-cap mags currently, are not).

I'd get the HK, the AR, skip the shotgun, and get an AK-47. Earlier this year, I sold my last bolt rifle so that I could say, "the only rifles I own are Ak-47s." You can dress it up, you can dress it down. You'll look good firing it in a suit or in jeans. Whatever the case, it makes Antis defecate themselves when you mention that you have one. So, pick up some AK mags and get one of those. Even a cheap one is good.

On a related note: Welcome to THR, and welcome to the world of gun owners. Thanks for helping make these guns "commonly used".

November 10, 2008, 01:27 AM
Thanks for the AK suggestion. I'll look into it.

The pistol may move up on the list due to the layout of my home - I live in a townhouse, making a rifle a poor choice due to connecting walls, and if I ever had to descend my staircase I simply could not do so well with a long arm. I realize that over-penetration is quite possible with a pistol or shotgun as well, but it is more manageable than a round fired from a rifle would be.

The shotgun grips aren't primarily for use but to piss off the Democrats. Having fired a pistol-gripped shotgun before, I know just how useless it would be in a situation where I had to use the weapon as anything other than a bludgeon (and it wouldn't be quite as useful without the stock even then), but I figure if I can piss some people off just a wee bit more for a mere $20, then why not? Heaven knows that money won't get me even a mag at the moment. And I also fail to see the point of a vertical shotgun grip.

I'll look into the AK - any suggestions for a good, solid milled AK and a good place to get AK mags?

November 10, 2008, 02:33 AM
Sounds like you've got all your bases covered, then. Kudos on doing your homework - you've thought out your choices well (as evidenced by the fact that I can't find anything to nitpick) :)

November 10, 2008, 02:35 AM
Not exactly an AK but I would recomend a VZ-58 from CZUSA

November 10, 2008, 03:58 AM
If the COLT is still marked Restricted LEO only, I would find another AR15 to look into.

Given the chances of a future ban having that signage on the side of your gun is not a benefit.


November 10, 2008, 08:56 AM
"I plan to purchase a 1911 for carry "

For a person with limited experience with guns, the 1911 is not a beginners gun. I would recommend a SnW .38 snub revolver, or if you are set on a semi auto pistol: Glock, S&W MnP, or SA XD.

November 10, 2008, 02:33 PM
The 1911 will come much later, once I have gained enough experience using one.

At present, my university (a private school) does not allow carry on campus. I'm not too happy about it, but just as we have second amendment rights private property owners have rights to decide what they'll permit on their land. I'll live with it for now. As I work, study, and spend most of my time on campus, I just can't justify spending the time and money to get a carry permit yet. Shortly after graduation, however, that will come (if it's still possible...).

November 10, 2008, 02:38 PM
I've always wondered if they could ban the ak altogether if a new AWB came into play. It's really been making me want to get one but I don't know if just getting the magazines right now and the rifle later might be a good idea. Anyone else just buy the mags with the intention of getting the long gun later

November 10, 2008, 03:33 PM
I've always wondered if they could ban the ak altogether if a new AWB came into play.

Uh, yes. You might want to actually read the text of HR 1022. :scrutiny:

November 10, 2008, 03:41 PM
i've always wondered if they could ban the ak altogether if a new awb came into play.

Ab-so-lutely. The AK is the headliner of all the "assault weapons."

November 10, 2008, 06:14 PM
If it were I,starting over from zero,I would get the Mossberg,[or Winchester] a Rock Island armory G.I. .45,and an AK.Add your choice of .22 [as long as it's a Ruger 10/22] and you'd never really HAVE to buy anything again,ever,except as personel preference to add to your collection [WWII stuff like the M1's carbine and Garand] but you'd have all your bases covered.

November 11, 2008, 01:46 AM
I'd add an AK to your list and remove the mossberg for now.

Banning shotguns will NOT be the first item on the agenda, and even if it is, a 'standard' 5 shot 18 inch pump gun is still going to be excellent. I don't think a new ban will be circumvented with thumbhole stocks and removed bayonette lugs like last time.

The standard list is
#1True Rifle (True battle rifle like a semiauto G3, FN-FAL, or just a 30-06 bolt gun)
#2 Intermediate Rifle (AK, SKS, AR-15 etc)
#3 Home Defense Shotgun
#4 Service handgun
#5 Concealed/backup/spare handgun
#6 .22LR rifle
#7 .22 LR handgun

Catagory #2 is going to get hit the hardest, redundancy there is good.

also, a gun that fits in catagory #1 and #2, like your G-3 is a good pick. Lets say they do go crazy and only bolt action hunting rifles are left for us to buy...there will still be plenty of .308 ammo, I think it is safer than 7.62x39 or 5.56nato

Something to consider is an AR-10 type gun just chambered in something exotic.

I have been thinking of getting a DPMS in 243, I think that is a real nice round, balances alot of stuf well. It would also be much easier to claim and show off such a gun as a hunting gun (if this is a military gun tell me what military uses 243???)

The only downside is no cheap surplus ammo

No Fear
November 11, 2008, 03:00 AM
Crossing over into gun ownershipDrop the drama. It's no different than buying a blender.

Every man needs a few basics for maximum fun and other purposes:

1. a .22 rifle and pistol
2. a military semi auto (AK/AR/FAL or all three)
3. a 9mm handgun
4. a .45 cal handgun
5. a revolver

There. It's actually very simple.

November 11, 2008, 03:49 AM
That's the basics,covered by No Fear. Everything else is just gravy.Of course,I AM fond of gravy!

November 11, 2008, 06:00 AM
Any ideas when we will get a less ugly TAR 21? Or can we get em from canada (is it legal?)

4v50 Gary
November 11, 2008, 11:11 AM
I think your selection is just fine. About the only thing I would add is a 22 rifle like a Ruger 10/22.

November 11, 2008, 12:22 PM
Crossing over into gun ownership

Drop the drama. It's no different than buying a blender.

Every man needs a few basics for maximum fun and other purposes:

1. a .22 rifle and pistol
2. a military semi auto (AK/AR/FAL or all three)
3. a 9mm handgun
4. a .45 cal handgun
5. a revolver

There. It's actually very simple.

I agree with above only, since you are a new shooter you need to get a few
.22 LR firearms to become proficient with at a reasonable cost for ammo before using the larger calibers. A case of .22 LR ammo is 5000 rounds and is about $125. A case of 500 rounds of most centerfire ammo is say $250. plus. Comes down to economics what is the smarter way to learn your shooting skills.

I strongly suggest a .22 LR bolt action rifle and a .22 LR revolver be your primary learning tools. Shoot both firearms with open sights and learn the basics before adding scopes and red dot type sights.

The next normal move up the ladder would be to another revolver in .38/.357
which in the future makes a great backup caliber. Jumping directly into semi-auto firearms for beginning shooters is like buying a teenage driver a Porsche when they should have a Ford Escort to learn on.

When you feel proficient and comfortable with your shooting skills then you would move forward to semi-auto firearms and the many different calibers available. Aways keep your basic firearms for continued shooting and teaching others the basics. I still have my first firearm which is a Remington 511x that my dad puchased for me at age 11. I have refinished the stock and put glass on top and it is still a great gun to shoot 43 years later.

November 11, 2008, 12:47 PM
Nice list sounds great I recommend some form of 1911 too!!

loose cannon
November 11, 2008, 12:58 PM
if i was doing this id go with

a glock 26 instead of the sig it has one trigger pull weight from first to last shot and the capability of useing 17rd glock 17 mags for high actually have 2 and stash one with ammo and mags somewhere secure for emergencys.these guns will work for ccw or the field or home defense.if you have to have a light rail get a glock 19.

a advantage arms 22lr kit for the g26 and 3mags as well as 10000rds of 22lr.this is for cheap practce and small game hunting if needed.

skip the shotgun unless you just have to have it.they have their place but their not essential.

a m1ai socom 16 from springfield armory and at least 30 mags.

the rest id spend on.308 and 9mm ammo for storage and practice to become proficient with these weapons.if i was to add another gun to this it'd be a ruger 10/22 carbine,more 22lr and mags.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
November 11, 2008, 01:16 PM
The answer to your question is: EBPs and Bullpups, particularly EBPs:

1. EBPs. Evil black pistols. Handguns based on semi-auto, detachable mag, military pattern rifle, such as an AK pistol, Sig 556 pistol, Kel Tec SU16 pistol, etc. Nothing makes a gun-banning blissninny congressional staffer (who writes the bills) wet themselves more than when you combine the evil attributes of BOTH EBR and handgun.

2. Bullpups. These make for a lot of bedwetting too, by the hoplophobes. They're just downright scary. Obviously, the only purpose of these is to mow down hordes of disabled schoolchildren that are petting bunnies and puppies (and the bunnies and puppies too, of course). Look at getting an FS 2000, P90, AUG, or similar.

But your selection so far is very good. I would cut into the Sig pistol and Mossberg shotgun budget, if necessary to add the really "bannable" one. You can get those two later. And you don't need to be the original purchaser to take advantage of guns that come with lifetime warranties, so I wouldn't rule out buying used.

November 11, 2008, 11:10 PM
My advice will differ from most here. Don't blow student loan money on this.

Yes, you should pick up a gun. If you have ever read internet post: building a basic battery on a budget, that is a good place to start. A Basic Battery on a Budget (

However, here are my thoughts on how you might vary a little from the advice given in that well thought out article, though:

Honestly, my advice is to pick up a 22 rimfire rifle first. This will be cheapest to buy and shoot. Learn to shoot the rifle. Maybe a Marlin bolt action might be a good pick--perhaps even used if you're going to be diligent and inspect the bore for any rust or obvious pitting.

For a carry gun, pick pistol that feels good in your hand and caliber you can shoot best. Pick something really easy to conceal. The fact is that the gun you actually carry and hit your target with will be the one that saves your life. With your budget, it may be that you end up with a 22LR rimfire pistol as well for now. Remember, those are the cheapest to shoot, too. If you're going to go that route, maybe even get the pistol first. You'll notice I didn't recommend a make or model...

If you do go that route, when you get the money together get something that feels close to that, or just right, in your hand, and in the caliber you want. And when you do that, get something that you can comfortably shoot--don't get sucked into the caliber wars here...

Your next purchase will be a shotgun. I strongly recommend a pump action 12 guage--something that you can get slug barrels for. A Mossberg seems a reasonable choice. When you get it, make sure slug barrels are readily available for it. As for the guage arguments, slug barrels are more commonly marketed for 12 guages. Also 12 guage ammo is commonly found in bulk. Next shotgun you get might be a 20 or a 410 guage, depending on whether you ever hunt, and what you plan to hunt. But you're not buying that 20 guage just yet.

Next, buy a bolt action high powered rifle. On your budget, maybe find Savage in bolt action or a German Mauser in good condition. As for the caliber? Well, the German K98 Mauser comes in 8mm. But if you're going for the newer rifle, I recommend 308 Winchester or 30-06. It used to be 308 Winchester ammo could be found in bulk in the form via the military surplus version: 7.62 NATO (7.62x51). But if I had it all to do over again, I'd probably go for 30-06. The amount of reload data out there for the 30-06 is overwhelming, and either caliber is more than enough gun most purposes.

If they're still available when you get the money together for this last purchase, pick up an 'assault weapon.' Serously though, because of the idiodic 'bans' you may wish to make this rifle gun #2 on the list. Given your financial situation, and knowing the types of rifles that tend to get 'banned' I'm going to say your best bet is an unissued SKS rifle. They're cheap, accurate enough, and least likely to actually get banned. Plus, unlike the AKs commonly available, their recievers have not been torch cut. Make sure it has the fixed magazine. This will be least likely to be affected by any ban, and I'm saying this realizing that the ban may be on the manufacture, sale or possession or said 'assault weapons.'

Again, put this arsenal together piecemeal. Don't blow student loan money on this stuff.

Edit: Since you are crossing over, do 3 things, for a total of around $26 or less
1. Mail a letter to your House Representative, asking them to protect your right to keep and bear arms (cost < $0.40)
2. Mail a similarly worded letter to your Senator (cost < $0.40)
3. Join the NRA (around $25) or the GOA (less money)

November 12, 2008, 07:55 PM
Looks like a decent list to me.
IMO, save the money you're planning to spend on "useless" stuff like pistol grips for shotguns.
Those who would ban our guns won't care what kind of stock you have on them - they want to ban them all.
You or I owning any guns is unacceptable to them so we don't need to make a special effort to piss them off.
So instead of buying some useless add-on, put that money into a good holster for the SIG you're planning to buy or get another couple boxes of ammo with it.

FWIW - I'd also suggest adding a .22 rifle to the list. You should be able to get a good one for under $150.

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