Should you ever have a loaded gun in an apartment?


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TheOtherOne
December 2, 2003, 01:42 PM
I know you are always suppose to watch what your muzzle covers, but lets say you are in an apartment that is surrounded by other apartments. One on the floor above, another below you, one on each side. Since you don't know who's in the apartments there's really no safe direction to ever be pointing your gun, is there?

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sturmruger
December 2, 2003, 01:44 PM
I think the key is to have your gun loaded with some of that frangible ammo. If I remember right I think Glaser is one of the more popular choices. They say it will go through one layer of sheetrock, but not two. Then you would not need to worry about shooting through the wall.

cslinger
December 2, 2003, 01:47 PM
Well if you are really worried about this I can see two relatively easy answers to the loaded gun question.

1)make sure the gun is stored in something that would act as a pretty safe backstop such as a quick access safe or maybe holstered down pointing in a sandtrap or something.

2)Buy a six, seven or eight shot revolver and keep the hammer down on the unloaded cylinder. This still gives you plenty of firepower with five to seven shots but makes sure there is no round under the hammer. Just pull the trigger to rotate the first round into firing position and BLAAAAMM.

Course you could go with a cruiser ready 12 gauge pump.

sm
December 2, 2003, 02:10 PM
I'm in an apt.
I only keep my CCWs here, long guns are off-site in a walk- in vault.

My CCWs are always loaded,semi's have one in chamber and the 1911style is C&L. Though at the moment I'm on top floor, I have in the past been on 1st or 2nd. I have also lived in a townhouse with a wife and kid while a house was being built.

CCW on person. When not I have a "safe secure zone" I also have and use a "clearing bucket". Be it an bucket filled with sand, or heavy furniture with materials. For instance in the townhouse there was a handgun kept in a pc of heavy funiture with said materials, lockable. Not always a revolver either. One of the testings I did was for this very thing when out shooting bldg materials, autos, glass. Safety always, so using what learned and educating the missus at the time I made steps for security.

Also Zones of fire with funiture and the kid was educated on what to do and where "cover" (not concealment) was. Family educated, drills practiced.

The only problem I"ve had was a neighbor to my current apt, immature rookie LEO whom like to party and drink to excess. He and his buds after much booze disharged a Glock one night. Thankfully bullet went the other direction and into an apt where no one home. .40 cal . BTW this fella and his friends did not make probabion and not LEO.

NO disrespect to LEO. Booze and guns don't mix, I'm sure ALL LEOs here agree with that...even for one of their own.

Graystar
December 2, 2003, 02:31 PM
Should you ever have a loaded gun in an apartment? The answer is "Yes."

You face the same issue every time you walk out the door carrying. In the mall on the second floor, on an amusement park ride, or simply bent over...there are many times when the muzzle is pointing in the wrong direction. You can't avoid it.

All you can do is to remember that safety is active, not passive. Be aware of the condition of your gun. Guns don't go off by themselves.

If you don't have a safe spot to point your gun while loading and unloading...then make one! Duct-tape 6 or more phone books together. Be creative.

TheOtherOne
December 2, 2003, 02:35 PM
You face the same issue every time you walk out the door carrying. In the mall on the second floor, on an amusement park ride, or simply bent over...there are many times when the muzzle is pointing in the wrong direction. You can't avoid it.Yeah, I hadn't even thought of that. It just kind of flies in the face of everything that you've been taught about watching where you point your gun. I know most people would throw a fit (justifiably) if someone swept a loaded gun across them while out hunting or at the range but it happens all the time with CCW's. I guess what we don't know doesn't hurt us.

sm
December 2, 2003, 02:50 PM
IMO/IME

Whether I was in an apt or home, the greater threat/concern was entering and leaving for too many years...even now and not doing that work, I CCW for a reason, everywhere.

Currently for me, I'm "less likely" to be broken into. Greater risk is still entering and leaving. We have had some vehicles broken into, I've pulled up after a late shift to see this in progress...Or I've heard glass breaking or a neighbor call because of a drunk BF is on the way over. Not looking to get involved but inside I'm "safer" per se' than answering the door, or the fellas friends lay in wait some time looking for the guy that witnessed the car getting broken into and their buds geting busted.

IN the old days and having to answer the alarm, the BGs would case the business, get a tag # and have it run ( false traffic report) get your name and follow you ...any number of tricks. Call in the middle of the night and pretend to be alarm company...at gunpoint march your butt to business to open safe. And I did arrive home one time to find someone waiting for me after breaking out a back window.

NOT honest maint. people, the bug guy...whatever might leave apt unlocked or have made a duplicate of your key...or master key.

So for me CCWs are just part of what I do, I guess its like a LEO pulling over a vehicle...kinda gets one "conditions" raised...entering and leaving my apt same way.

Penforhire
December 2, 2003, 03:13 PM
I'm fan of birdshot in a 12 ga for that situation. So I guess my answer is "yes," you have the right (and it is right) to be armed in your domicile, whether rented or owned.

JimJD
December 2, 2003, 03:19 PM
I'm going with what Graystar said.

I used to live in NYC too. When possible, a loaded gun was kept around.
It was secured however.
All of the places I lived in NYC(apartments) luckily were old and well kept. I believe the term is a "pre-war" building. Walls and floors were thick and very strong, steel beams throughout, and brick on the outside.
Almost all of the recently constructed buildings have very thin sheet rock walls, etc. It's like that almost everywhere in the country these days.

I like that phone book idea Graystar!

ny32182
December 2, 2003, 03:31 PM
I keep my handguns loaded with 155 and 115 grain Gold Dots. I point them in a direction that would have the bullet travel through an outside wall and into a brick retaining wall if it made it that far, in the event of an AD while loading/unloading.

TonyB
December 2, 2003, 03:40 PM
loaded ...always....guns make crappy bludgeons(and expensive one's)...seriously tho...if you obey the finger off the trigger rule,unless you have a POS gun(locin or the like) your gun wont just "go off"....ND's do happen,but always when someone's no paying attention........IMO....all my guns are loaded save the long guns in the safe.....:cool:

Graystar
December 2, 2003, 03:53 PM
I like that phone book idea Graystar! Thanks! I use a brick wall myself. :D

Zeke Menuar
December 2, 2003, 04:07 PM
I keep a loaded 45 within a few feet of me at all times, and a loaded shotgun in the bedroom. Part of being a responsible gun owner is knowing what is beyond the wall in my apartment. An instructor of mine once said that sometimes your backstop will be the bad guy and the bad guy only, everything else might be a no-shoot. That scenario has to be part of the plan.
If I have a preference I would use the 12 ga. #4 shot and a IC choke. Should stop anything and not go through the walls. It is worth noting that I have stopped two attempted home break-ins and two car break-ins with a 12ga. shotgun. All I had to do was to work the slide and the BG took off. Based on those episodes I think that most BG's know what a 12ga pump sound like and most BG's don't want to mess with a angry homeowner with a 12ga.

ZM

Skunkabilly
December 2, 2003, 04:15 PM
I always left mine loaded.

Zer000
December 2, 2003, 05:28 PM
Yes. Its not the most optimal situation, but you gotta do what you gotta do. I keep my CZ75 C&L and a Mossberg 500 loaded with birdshot. The CZ is pointed so the bullet will have to pass through two walls and a bathtub before it goes into unknown territory.

antsi
December 2, 2003, 05:43 PM
< I know most people would throw a fit (justifiably) if someone swept a loaded gun across them while out hunting or at the range but it happens all the time with CCW's. I guess what we don't know doesn't hurt us. >

I'd distinguish between different activities and levels of risk. Gun, in holster, on belt, sweeping me as someone comes down a flight of stairs (for instance) = relatively low risk. Loading or unloading or anything where one is actually handling the gun, I always point into my gun safe. That way even if I do have a ND, the safe will contain it.

Gewehr98
December 2, 2003, 05:52 PM
Buy a six, seven or eight shot revolver and keep the hammer down on the unloaded cylinder. This still gives you plenty of firepower with five to seven shots but makes sure there is no round under the hammer. Just pull the trigger to rotate the first round into firing position and BLAAAAMM.

Most modern revolvers, especially double-action types made after WWII, have an integral transfer bar or other safety that prevents an accidental discharge of the round under the hammer, even when the hammer is struck sharply via a drop on the floor, etc.

The empty-chamber-under-the-hammer rule still holds true for older Colt Single Action Army revolvers and their non-safetied modern reproductions, plus the blackpowder cap & ball revolvers. Those vintage arms aren't usually ones first idea for a home-defense handgun. If you have something built since the Victory Model S&W's, you don't need to short-change yourself one round out of a full chamber for safety concerns. ;)

Standing Wolf
December 2, 2003, 08:32 PM
Of course. Your life is worth defending wherever you happen to be.

JPM70535
December 2, 2003, 08:55 PM
Loaded alwas

"The 2 most useless things in the world are an empty gun and a dull knife"

ump45
December 2, 2003, 09:16 PM
Law Enforcement officers fire their weapons inside apartment homes.

And no, you don't have to choose some weak-a$$ "frangible" ammo. Just load your gun up with the same exact high-quality JHP ammo that Law Enforcement agencies use.

If it's good enough for a cop to fire inside an apartment complex, then it is GOOD ENOUGH FOR ME.

sidearm
December 2, 2003, 09:50 PM
Yep, I keep mine loaded - even in my apartment. With people continually moving in and out the risks real. You don't always have a chance to meet your neighbors. I always carry full house rounds - if I need to use them I'd be happy to explain. A local CCW is coming - and you can bet it'll be loaded for boar. Good luck in your decision.

Sidearm-

CommonSense
December 2, 2003, 10:25 PM
I’ve had this debate with more than a few people. My thoughts are: If you feel the need to be armed, you probably do. And if that is the case, by all means, protect yourself and your family. Liability-wise, I think that was already answered here.

However, I DO have a problem with apartment dwellers that store their weapons in a closet. Most apartments have hollow framed doors that most 12 year olds could easily kick out. And the fact that you may have put a lock on that closet door just makes it more of a target.

Here’s an easy rule of thumb: Could my weapons end up in the hands of the next murderer. If so, what do I need to do to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Many gun owners purchase weapons without thinking about how to safely store them. But then, if you read the news, I guess I don’t to tell you that.

vertigo7
December 2, 2003, 10:47 PM
I'm in an apartment with natural gas lines on both sides of my unit. Although the lines are quite solid steel, the idea of popping off rounds in the house has me a little concerned. On the other hand, worrying about an intruder in my apartment trying to inujure/kill me and mine trumps me worrying about the very remote possibility of a gas leak. My CCW and shotguns stay loaded. Glasers would be nifty if you're into gimmick ammo.

SnWnMe
December 2, 2003, 10:51 PM
Rule#1 Guns are ALWAYS loaded

CommonSense
December 2, 2003, 11:05 PM
And the beat goes on. :banghead:

Ryder
December 2, 2003, 11:07 PM
there's really no safe direction to ever be pointing your gun, is there?

"Ever" covers a lot of ground. Got a book case? I've "always" figured that 3 or 4 feet of hardcovers make for a darn good backstop. That's what I use for dry fire practice even though I don't live in an apartment.

cslinger
December 3, 2003, 02:16 AM
Gewehr98


I realize that just about any modern firearm has some kind of transfer safety etc.

I was just addressing the original posters question or fear of having a loaded weapon in an apartment. The revolver would alleviate his or her fear while at the same time giving them a sizeable amount of firepower at thier disposal.

Me personally I would keep the weapon loaded to capacity whether a semi auto or revolver or rifle.

Chris

Sharpie1
December 3, 2003, 11:32 AM
Chances are, at least 50% of the other residents in your building have loaded firearms in their apartments.

I wouldn't give it a second thought - just know your guns well enough to operate them properly and safely, and you will be fine.

TD

Guyon
December 3, 2003, 03:15 PM
Should you ever have a loaded gun in an apartment?

Never. Keep it unloaded and use it like a club. A really expensive club. :D

Seriously, buy a shotgun. Load it with 7 1/2 or 8 shot. Sleep soundly.

MrAcheson
December 3, 2003, 04:06 PM
Loaded guns in an apartment? Sure, but be careful. Chances are you have at least a few walls that are more safe than others. Be aware of things that make ok backstops like TVs. The "clearing bucket" full of sand is a great idea as well.

Oh and secure your guns properly when you and yours are not at home. If you can't use them, then it makes no sense to leave them accessible to others.

Hot brass
December 3, 2003, 04:41 PM
When I lived in an apartment, I kept my .357 mag loaded with S&W 110gr jhp`s.

zahc
December 3, 2003, 08:36 PM
The way I've always treated the safe direction rule was that it counts most when the gun is being handled. Since guns rarely go off unless they are being handled, a gun in the holster is Ok to cover people if unavoidable (indeed, many holsters point at some part of the wearer's anatomy.)

it's all about common sense and awareness.

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