Firearm misconceptions.


December 26, 2002, 12:39 AM
Before I was into firearms the sight of a locked and cocked 1911 scared the bejezzus out of me. Now its pure pleasure.

What misconceptions did you have about firearms in the past.

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Dave R
December 26, 2002, 12:42 AM
I used to think I would never have an ND. I'm more careful now.

December 26, 2002, 01:28 AM
I don't really remember any misconceptions in the sense you describe. I started shooting so young that guns have just always been part of my life.

My tastes and preferences have changed over the years, but that's about it. I used to prefer rifles to the exclusion of handguns, then big handguns, revolvers and automatics, but I'm far more intrigued by mouse guns now.

I'm really looking forward to the SHOT Show in February where Rohrbaugh is going to debut its 9mm mouser and Kel-Tec is going to introduce two new products. I hope one of the KTs is a P-32 sized mouser in .380 or 9mm.

December 26, 2002, 01:45 AM
Despite being properly inducted into the handgunning world, I underwent a several-year-long period where revolvers and 1911s struck me as archaic and silly.

I have since recovered. ;)

December 26, 2002, 01:47 AM
What misconceptions did you have about firearms in the past.

That background checks keep firearms out of the bad guys' hands. :rolleyes:

December 26, 2002, 02:01 AM
I grew up with the misconception that machineguns were illegal. Ater several years of collecting guns, I later found out otherwise. Unfortunately, this was right about the time the '86 machinegun ban was being created. Cost me a lot more money than it would have had I started buying much earlier.

December 26, 2002, 11:16 AM
I started so early I don't think I had any misconceptions, like Blackhawk.

December 26, 2002, 11:22 AM
I didn't really have any misconceptions per say, but I was definitely very ignorant of firearms and the erosion of my civil liberties and rights.

Since becoming a firearms owner and frequenting places like TFL, 1911Forum, THR, etc. I have become more knowledgable in all the above categories, more so, and thankfully in the civil liberties/rights.

2nd Amendment
December 26, 2002, 12:12 PM
It wasn't so much technical misconceptions as a misunderstanding of the entire issue. The AW ban crystalized the issue for me after years of hovering around the edges of it. Well, I did go thru the "wheelgun as anachronism" stage but never the 1911. You must have been really bamfoozled Tamara! :D

December 26, 2002, 12:28 PM
That "drastic plastic" were all junk weapons...

Double Naught Spy
December 26, 2002, 12:57 PM
...that guns are dangerous and that is a bad thing. Of course, it is the fact that guns are dangerous that makes them an effective tool. Used incorrectly, anything can be dangerous. It is what you do with the tool that matters.

El Tejon
December 26, 2002, 01:16 PM
From many, many years inside the gun culture, just some of my faves:

1. Ceramic Glock 7s;
2. Black Talons;
3. Exploding bullets;
4. A _________ is "all you need";
5. That .22s won't/don't kill;
6. A scope on a rifle makes it "more accurate";
7. That weapons do the shooting and not the operator;
8. A shotgun/.223/.45/.44mag will "blow a man off his feet";
9. That training is not needed since I "learned a lot reading gun rags", "was on a base doing KP when SF drove by", "I was in the Selous Scouts/SEEL Team 37.5", "my dad was a cop", or "I am too cool to train."
10. The sound of the weapon/or its discharging does the killing;
11. The longer the barrel the "more accurate" the weapon is;
12. That having a gun makes you armed.

December 26, 2002, 01:31 PM
Of course most of US know better, but the Mel Gibson types can use a Beretta 92 to rapid fire a "happy face" at 25 yards ... And partners don't think nuthin' of it when you keep your finger on the trigger and constantly sweep any and everything with the muzzle ... ;)

But, back more on topic ... that a .38 Special must be 38 caliber or that it was more potent than a 9mm because it was bigger ...

December 26, 2002, 01:34 PM
I used to think that people who carried every day were just paranoid.

Now I KNOW they are paranoid. The bad news is that people really are out to get them. :(

December 26, 2002, 02:18 PM
No real misconceptions, but I had some real ignorance about firearms. Fortunately, I became friends with an elderly gentleman (now deceased) who set me straight, and showed me the light.

I will always be grateful to him for teaching me. Since then, I have sought to learn as much as I can about firearms.

December 26, 2002, 02:25 PM
I had a misconception that I had a right to keep and bear arms that was protected under the
Second Amendment of the Constitution of
the United States.

Does that count?

PS, I still believe I have a right to keep and
bear arms. I just no longer believe that the
2nd carries the force of law behind it as
it should.

Lesse, what else. When I was twelve and
carrying a slung mauser home on the city
bus after a weekend at a friends house where
we went shooting, (Atlanta) I believed it was ok. It was too. Only I thought it would always be so.

I also believed that since I could shoot from
a bench, shoot standing and prone, that I could
shoot from a fox hole. I was sadly embarassed
by my performance. I lamely explained that
we didn't have no foxholes at home.

December 26, 2002, 02:29 PM
That projectiles really had knock down power.


December 26, 2002, 02:31 PM
Also used to be nervous with a locked and loaded 1911.

Chris Rhines
December 26, 2002, 03:27 PM
That the neatest 9mm in the world was the Berreta 92F. (I admit this only under threat from my Dad...)

Later, that the neatest 9mm in the world was the Glock 17.

Ongoing misconception - that I know how to shoot.

- Chris

December 26, 2002, 03:32 PM
I got that same ongoing misconception... ;)

December 26, 2002, 06:42 PM
I had to think about this one. My biggest misconception was that gun writers were something other than paid whores for gun makers.

There are some notable exceptions to that (Charlie Petty, Ross Seyfried and Gun tests come to mind), but anybody that buys a gun based on what Guns & Ammo or Shooting Times has to say about is just rolling the dice.


rock jock
December 26, 2002, 06:49 PM
Before I picked up a handgun at the age of 27, I bought into all the Hollywood myths: that they only made a little noise, that they had almost no recoil, that it was real easy to make a smiley face with a 9mm at 50 yards.

December 26, 2002, 07:00 PM
Most gun battles occur under 7 yards so that is all I need to practice for.

Most gun battles occur under 7 yards so my gun doesn't have to be capable of any more accuracy than that and neither do I.

Most gun battles occur under 7 yards so I don't need sights.

Any actual self defense encounter I am involved in will fit a specific senario that I have dreamed up in my mind and nothing else is possible so why prepare for it ?

December 26, 2002, 07:27 PM
so I grew up with no exposure to them.

First time I walked into a gun store in NC after moving from Mass., I was really shocked when I realized that the clerk had a C&L 1911 on his hip... I thought it was just waiting to go off on its own. Three years of carrying one that way has changed my perception a bit.

Took me a while to realize that accuracy with a handgun was really, Really, REALLY hard to develop... 'specially for me... so many movies with people casually firing handguns and hitting whatever they want had had a subtle effect of leading me to think that I could pick up a handgun and be good with it.


Will Fennell
December 26, 2002, 07:32 PM
These are personal firearms misconceptions.....

-That only rifles with "mint bores" would shoot tight groups..
-That 5.56 was a truly devastating cartridge....
-That I could shoot a revolver well.....
-That the custom 1911 that was in progress was the last one I would ever have built....
-That I could actually beat Jerry Barnhart during the graduation man on man match at the end of his 2 day shooting class.....
-That 9mm was a truly devastating cartridge.....
-That I would not be able to shoot enough clays to make NSCA's TEAM USA. I did, and I have the credit card bills to prove it.....

I could go on...but I'm getting depressed:rolleyes:

December 26, 2002, 07:38 PM
Probably the practice put forth by hollywood that you can constantly drop opponents with single shots from handguns.

I never consiously thought about it, but seeing it so often, I just took it for granted.

Now whenever someone instantly dies in a hollywood film from one handgun bullet or a single stab wound to the gut I always mentally roll my eyes.

December 26, 2002, 08:14 PM
That what the man behind the counter is telling me is the Gods honest truth and that he's looking out for my best interests.

That the newest next bestest widget that will change the face of shooting will make me a better shooter.

That because the Army issues it it's the best avaialable (post 1986 of course)

I'm too well trained to have an N.D.

Glocks are perection and can be sneaked through a metal detecter because they's plastic.

December 29, 2002, 09:51 PM
First, that shooting a handgun was easy, just like on TV. The first time I shot a revolver, a 32 S&W, I actually thought there was something wrong with the gun because I couldn't hit anything.:p I "knew" it couldn't be me, I could hit things with a 22 rifle.:D

Second, that bullets had knock down power. Experience showed otherwise.

December 30, 2002, 02:27 AM
I grew up with 2 hanguns only (Gov't 45 and a 22 revo) in the house.
My only misconception I guess: you can't miss with a shotgun--

December 30, 2002, 02:57 AM
Yeah, you can't miss with a shotgun. That was one.

And you don't need anyone to show or teach you how to shoot a shotgun. After all, you can't miss with it, right? So all you gotta do is keep one in your closet and you'll be able to kill anything that tries to climb in the window.

And, of course, you don't need to keep a shotgun loaded, because racking it makes a noise that causes intruders to crap their pants and run away crying for their mommas.

Plus, a 12 guage won't punch through any of the walls inside your home, no matter how thin the walls are or what ammo you use.

Had some trouble learning the various calibers. After all, the 9mm, 9x19, 9mm luger, 9mm largo, 9x18, 9mm steyr, 9mm short, 9mm parabellum ... you know, they all sounded pretty much alike to me! Plus, whenever anyone would start to explain 'em, they'd start with some basic little tidbit ("That's a 9mm") and then quickly add a whole bunch of extraneous stuff, up to and including summaries of all the caliber wars that have ever been fought, and with interesting little rabbit trails about which companies developed the round and why they developed it and why the FBI isn't using it anymore or has gone back to it or stopped using it again and why it's better than a .45 (or why nothing is better than a .45) and which guns it goes in and why it doesn't work so well in one of the guns that it was designed for and what weight of bullet you'd expect it to propel and why they've stopped making it and how much 'stopping power' it's supposed to have and which companies used to make it and don't anymore and which companies make it now but are rumored to be about to discontinue it and which new guns are going to be coming out which shoot it and by that time my eyes would be glazed over and I'd think, "I am never going to get the hang of this!"

Another misconception. I thought I wasn't good enough to take a class. (Hmmm, something wrong with the logic there -- ya think?)

I'm sure there's more ...


We confess our little faults to persuade people that we have no large ones. -- L. Rochefoucauld

Mark Benningfield
December 30, 2002, 03:17 AM
Hello All.

Well, like many, I grew up with firearms. The main thing that I was ignorant of was how big a fuss some people were making over other people having guns. Until I was old enough to experience the wider world, it never occured to me that someone would have a problem with owning guns. Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE I knew had guns and shot them, whether plinking or hunting or adjusting BG behavior patterns. When I got to college and ran into sheeple for the first time, I was flabbergasted. It was readily apparent that these folks knew nothing factual about guns, but when I tried to explain to them the truth, they would say "Well, that's not what I've been told..." ad infinitum. I still can't believe it to this day.

December 30, 2002, 04:06 AM
That firing a gun would beat up your shoulder so as to make you not want to shoot anymore. Never happened to me!

December 30, 2002, 08:23 AM
I used to think no "ordinary citizen" needed a full-auto assault rifle.

I was told a .45 ACP would spin a man around if it hit his thumb at 100 yards.

And that M-16 bullets tumbled end-over-end toward their target, resulting in a cruel and devastating wound.

Double Naught Spy
December 30, 2002, 10:46 AM
I liked chipperman's post that he used to think people who carried guns were paranoid. While attending Defensive Handgun I at Thunder Ranch, a firearms trainer for Hillsboro, Texas sheriff's department took liberty of poking fun at me for wearing a ballistic vest. More than once he suggested that my wearing of the vest was because I was paranoid. I had to laugh. I was in a class with 16 other individuals who were there to learn how to better defend themselves with handguns , but I was paranoid for wearing protection capable of stopping handgun rounds.

On the last day of class, while we were getting our certificates, I had not changed out of my gear. Deputy Fife once again commented that I could take of my vest since nobody was shooting. I asked if he still had his gun on him and his reply was that he did, that he always did. I explained that I had seen his targets and that I was much better off with a vest on so long as he had a gun in his possession. He didn't think that was funny, but the rest of us had a good laugh.

December 30, 2002, 11:17 AM
That the 32 acp was pretty much useless for self-defense. Stats have proven me wrong.

December 30, 2002, 11:25 AM
When I was a kid, you could carry your firerarm from the house to the river, creek or shooting range in plain sight.

Now the area that I use to hunt is off limits and being built up. We always had good picken's behind the airport but now is not allowed.

Even though with all the "progress" in the area, the rabbit and pheasant population has grown. Due to no hunting.

Man, wish that I could go back there and de-populate it some.

December 30, 2002, 11:30 AM
Yeah, I wanna add to this again.

That owning an AR or other Black Rifles was a bad thing.

That Select Fire or automatic weapons were banned or regulated for the good of the community.

That the Police were here to protect and serve me and mine.

That the second amendment would always be there for me if I ever needed it.

Boy did my eye open.
:( just a little too late.

December 30, 2002, 11:43 AM
It's never too late. You have seen the light and that's a good thing!

December 30, 2002, 11:48 AM
In my youth I thought that having a firearm would protect me without the requisite training and will to use it. Not really a misconception but a realization, owning a firearm doesn't make you a good person or a bad person, it makes you a firearm owner.

December 30, 2002, 11:58 AM
With responsibilities and hopefully common sense.

Nathaniel Firethorn
December 30, 2002, 12:03 PM
That the police were required by law to protect me and my family.

That I could purchase a firearm in New Jersey without six different kinds of governmental humiliation.

- pdmoderator

December 30, 2002, 03:17 PM
when my Dad told me when I was a teenager back in the 50's that all of those old Springfields at the army surplus store for 15.00 were junk and you shouldn't waste your money....chris3

December 30, 2002, 03:41 PM
That I could hit anything with a .38 S&W snubbie. The only thing I hit was a big can at 25 yards and I wasn't even aiming for it!:D

December 30, 2002, 04:03 PM
That I could hit a target at about 20 yards with a Ruger 44 Mag without ever shooting a handgun before.

That you accurately shoot the Ruger 44 Mag one-handed like Clint Eastwood (aka Dirty Harry).

That it was illegal to open carry in Georgia.

That you needed a permit to own a handgun in Georgia, etc. etc.

December 30, 2002, 04:34 PM
That a .45 was better than a 9mm :D

December 30, 2002, 05:27 PM
I used to think I was a good shot. Now I know I need more practice.

December 30, 2002, 05:47 PM
I was knee high to a grashhopper when the Glock hit the market. And I believed it was an evil gun cause thats what I saw I the Boob tube. Now I own one of those evil guns and love it to pieces.

December 30, 2002, 05:48 PM
I used to not know why anyone would want to own a fully automatic weapon. But know I would love to own one just to shoot for fun, and I can't get one.

December 30, 2002, 05:53 PM
Owning a "silencer" is illegal.

Owning a machinegun is illegal.

I once talked to a guy that was convinced that possession of "M16 ammo" is illegal.

A .25 ACP, .22LR, .32 ACP, .380 ACP etc. won't kill anyone, "it will just piss them off"

One Shot Stops

People "know how to shoot" just because they are police officers or have served in the military.

The choice of a scope is dependent on the caliber of the rifle or how much you paid for the rifle; "Why would you put a scope like that on a .22?" "I can't buy that scope, it costs more than the rifle".

"I shot that deer at 400 yards" How do you know if was 400 yards ? "It must have been that far". Where does you rifle hit at 400 yards ? "I just held at the top of it's back"

When shooting a submachine gun, you just aim at their feet because it is impossible to control the muzzle climb.

Silencers are silent

44 Magnum is the most powerful handgun in the world and the recoil will break your wrist.

Firearms knowlege based on something that was in a movie.

December 30, 2002, 06:18 PM
The most common misconceptions when I was a kid:

1. a .357 magnum will penetrate an engine block in a car.

2. a .45 automatic will stop a bad guy quicker than a 9MM or .38 special, AND the .45 acp is so powerful that the recoil from a 1911 will sprain your wrist.

3. you can't miss with a shotgun.

4. If you get into a (civilian-self defense) gunfight it might be at long range, (over 7 yards.)

5. The '03 Springfield is a .30-30 (Had a retired 30 year marine master sergeant tell me that one.)

6. you can't hit a man sized target with a handgun past 100 yards.

7. all veterans know at least a little bit about small arms.

8. SAVING THE BEST FOR LAST : People who write articles for gun magazines know what they are writing about.

December 30, 2002, 06:29 PM
One that really bugs me is saying that a 15 round magazine is "high capacity" when in fact it is standard capacity. Now those neutered ten-rounders are either "diminished capacity" or "political capacity" as far as I'm concerned.

December 31, 2002, 12:01 AM
OK, this is truly embarrassing.

But I once thought that "wonder-nines" were IT and Col. Cooper was way behind the times and 1911's were ancient and useless.

Only took a few months with my first pistol, a "wonder-nine" of course, to figure out I was an idiot. But a repentant idiot at least...

December 31, 2002, 12:27 AM
I started reasonably early - round about age 11 with a .300 Savage 99; "added" a .22LR semi a couple of years later.

But didn't even know what a shotgun was until YEARS later - always thought those guys bustin' the clays were using a single projectile - thought those people shooting trap on TV were just inhuman.

December 31, 2002, 01:21 AM
Growing up with a bunch of guntraders as uncles and neighbors and having my knuckles wrapped a few times for letting the muzzle of even toy guns point at someone. Or that no one ever handed a weapon to someone else without opening the action.


I didn't trust any auto loader, other than a 1911, them thangs is ok ta play with boy, but don't trust yo' life ta nuttin' but revolver.

December 31, 2002, 01:26 AM
Then I realized I live in ********** :banghead:...

...and can only buy 12 new handguns in a year! :p

December 31, 2002, 05:07 AM
Thought I didn't need or want a firearm until a couple of years ago. Oh, the time I've wasted.:mad:

December 31, 2002, 07:54 AM
That Glock made a ceramic gun, the model 7 I believe and ,

That the 9mm round was a super round capable of punching completely through the engine block of a 454 Chevy.

December 31, 2002, 10:45 AM
That I could actually hit anything with a short-barreled 357.

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