Which of these three guns for a new shooter?


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Hal
December 6, 2012, 11:12 AM
Please, limit it to these three only:

AR in .22lr
AR in .233
Remington 12 ga. 870.

Brand new shooter with no experience at all with a firearm.
None.

Has never fired a gun before in his life.

The gun my be used for home defense by the man, his wife, and possibly young son - age not known.
Presumadly, the wife and son have never fired a firearm either.

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Ramone
December 6, 2012, 11:50 AM
I'd go with the AR in .223/5.56

every year, thousands of people who have never shot a rifle go into USMC bootcamp, and come out the other end as Rifle Experts.

It's enough gun, but not too much gun, for just about anyone.

I would give some thought to a carbine in 9MM for the above circumstance, as the price of ammo will encourage practice.

Sheepdog1968
December 6, 2012, 12:04 PM
Of your specific scenario, I'd lean towards the 223 AR. Though I am personally in the camp that thinks a 12 gauge is better, it's recoil can intimidate many leading to them practicing less. The 223 AR essentially has little recoil but is still a very capable round. With little recoil, hopefully they will practice more. In fact, I would strongly encourage them to save up and attend some formal training as soon as they can.

Skribs
December 6, 2012, 12:08 PM
I don't know, sheep. My friend's little sister was 19 first time she went shooting, and she chewed through 3.5" magnum shells out of my pump. Personally, though, I think the .223 is a better SD platform, and also probably better for a new shooter.

I'd give consideration to a 9mm pistol instead, though. Cheaper than a .223 rifle, and gives the option of carrying if he'd like. Also easier to store out of sight but with quick access.

mcdonl
December 6, 2012, 12:14 PM
I agree with the AR in .223 - If they enjoy it and want to benefit from lower cost practice they can get a .22LR later... if they start with the .22LR and do not like it the resale may be a little more of a loss and say what you want about shot placement I would rather have .223 in a life or death over .22LR

As far as the 870 goes... Shotguns to me are pretty specific tools and require quite a bit more skill than an AR to be good with them. Just the shooting of the gun requires more "fortitude"?

JAshley73
December 6, 2012, 01:15 PM
As far as the 870 goes... Shotguns to me are pretty specific tools and require quite a bit more skill than an AR to be good with them. Just the shooting of the gun requires more "fortitude"?

Some would argue that they are more versatile. It's hard to hit a flying target with a rifle. But you are correct, they require a DIFFERENT skill-set for sure.

To give my opinion (I hope it doesn't stink :) ) to the OP, I'd ask the first time buyers, what they think would be more fun - pistol, rifle, or shotgun shooting. I say ask about the fun factor, because if its also fun for them to shoot, hopefully they'll do it more often and be more proficient, than they would have been had they just bought a gun and left it in the closet.

I would also advise against a .22lr if they would consider their first purchase for defensive purchases. That can come later, after they've gotten their feet wet, and want to save money on plinking...

Just my $.02...

Sav .250
December 6, 2012, 01:22 PM
22LR.............with out a doubt. You have to walk before you can run!

allaroundhunter
December 6, 2012, 01:58 PM
Buyer's willingness to seek proper training is iffy. My gut feeling is - no.

With this information arising, my vote changes to a pump-shotgun.

Al Thompson
December 6, 2012, 02:04 PM
Budget is going to play a big part in that discussion. A Marlin Model 60 and a S&W Sporter can be less than a Colt AR.

Also a big factor is training range availability. I "think" all our indoor ranges allow .22LR and birdshot, but only two allow rifle fire.

Skribs
December 6, 2012, 02:09 PM
Budget is going to play a big part in that discussion. A Marlin Model 60 and a S&W Sporter can be less than a Colt AR.

Also a big factor is training range availability. I "think" all our indoor ranges allow .22LR and birdshot, but only two allow rifle fire.

Big reason I don't have a rifle and I do have a shotgun, even though I advocate rifle for SD.

bikerdoc
December 6, 2012, 02:09 PM
22 LR, been training newbies and youguns for decades.
Get the basics first, then they can graduate to a SD/HD weapon.

Skribs
December 6, 2012, 02:11 PM
Get the basics first, then they can graduate to a SD/HD weapon.

A lot of people want their first gun to be good for SD/HD. It's often their justification for getting a gun.

almherdfan
December 6, 2012, 02:15 PM
I thought it was pretty much canon that new shooters started with 22LR. 22LR will suffice for HD, if the shooter has the mind-set, training and the correct tool.

holdencm9
December 6, 2012, 02:21 PM
Agreed. I am surprised so many non-.22LR advocates so far.

Besides, a .22LR out of a carbine is a lot more potent than out of a pistol, and you can send a lot of (well-aimed) bullets downrange in a hurry! I would vote .22lr

Skribs
December 6, 2012, 02:55 PM
I thought it was pretty much canon that new shooters started with 22LR. 22LR will suffice for HD, if the shooter has the mind-set, training and the correct tool.

Well then I ain't canon. Never owned a .22 LR and never will. I've started a few people out on .40 S&W and they handled it just fine.

Steel Talon
December 6, 2012, 02:59 PM
Ist time owner/shooter 22lr is the road to take. Cheap lots of fun will always be a favorite in your gun safe and will see regular use.As you grow and as you teach others.

That 870 will make a fine bird gun if your a hunter. and can be used as a home defence howitzer.Shoolting magnum loads at the range will wear you out pretty quick...

.223 is a good cartridge, ever popular AR platform has many mods etc. available to move into a field of interest for you

Hal
December 6, 2012, 03:05 PM
Budget is no barrier for the firearm.
Budget for ammo is unknown - but - it could play a factor.
Buyer's access to a range is unknown.
Buyer's willingness to seek proper training is iffy. My gut feeling is - no.

Assume for the sake of this discussion, this will be the buyer's only firearm and the choices are limited to only these three - so while a handgun in 9mm would make a good choice, it's not an option.

youngda9
December 6, 2012, 03:09 PM
Brand new shooter with no experience at all with a firearm.
None.

An AR is the LAST firearm you should choose for the above person. Amazing that so many people can't think beyond their noses.

Shotgun is 1/3-1/2 the price and much more effective.

allaroundhunter
December 6, 2012, 03:10 PM
Never owned a .22 LR and never will.

You're missing out.... big time

Friendly, Don't Fire!
December 6, 2012, 03:14 PM
I say the 12 gauge.
The reasons are:
1) One can shoot mild or wild (inexpensive low-brass or full-magnum) loads
2) One can shoot small or big (shot-sizes)
3) One can shoot many, a little, or one (birdshot, buckshot, rifled slugs)
4) One can have several different barrels for your liking which can be changed within one minute, or less
5) With the 870, you can get parts just about anywhere
6) One can purchase from an infinite array of aftermarket modification parts if they happen to get tired of the OEM gun and they eventually would like some changes
7) The gun will appreciate in value, if it is well-cared for

tacxted
December 6, 2012, 03:17 PM
Budget is no barrier for the firearm.
Budget for ammo is unknown - but - it could play a factor.
Buyer's access to a range is unknown.
Buyer's willingness to seek proper training is iffy. My gut feeling is - no.

Assume for the sake of this discussion, this will be the buyer's only firearm and the choices are limited to only these three - so while a handgun in 9mm would make a good choice, it's not an option.

I want to say 870, but if budget is no barrier for the gun I would say ar 223. Maybe this person wants to add all of the tactical suff on later. Im saying it would be funner for a new shooter to cusomize an ar223 over a 870.

I feel the 22lr would not be enough fun over a mag dump with an ar223 or blowing up pumpkins with an 870.

Its about new shooters learning about the fun side of firearm owner ship. my 2 cents

45_auto
December 6, 2012, 03:17 PM
Hard to answer the OP's question without more input. For no intention to train, no intention to practice, and pure HD, the pump 870 shotgun would be the best choice of the 3.

Never owned a .22 LR and never will.

I take it you're not planning on having kids and grandkids and enjoying shooting with them. You're being very shortsighted about the best way to introduce youngsters and other non-firearms owners to shooting, but possibly that doesn't matter to you.

mcdonl
December 6, 2012, 03:23 PM
An AR is the LAST firearm you should choose for the above person. Amazing that so many people can't think beyond their noses.

Shotgun is 1/3-1/2 the price and much more effective.

So, in your opinion it is easier to shoot a 12g shotgun than an AR?

Thats the great thing about opinions... they can differ.

In MY opinion (And experience with two teens who started shooting when they were very young) the AR platform is hands down the easiest to learn on.

Skribs
December 6, 2012, 03:43 PM
AAH I've shot a couple .22 LRs. About as fun as a trip to the dentist, IMO. Especially the revolver. Now that the OP says assume this will be the buyer's only firearm, I have to say .22 LR is not a good idea if the buyer's goal is HD. If there are no plans to get a .223 or a shotgun, then I'd have to recommend getting something with enough power off the bat.

Youngda, whether the shotgun is better or worse is not very clear. I actually think the carbine makes a better HD platform than a shotgun, for several reasons. I'll agree with you on price, but as has been mentioned by the OP its not a factor. I would love for you to enlighten me on how I "don't see past my own nose". I'd also like to hear how a rifle is so much worse for a new shooter, when (as has been said in this thread) many people join the Army/Marines with no previous firearm experience and get taught on the .223 M16/M4 just fine.

I take it you're not planning on having kids and grandkids and enjoying shooting with them. You're being very shortsighted about the best way to introduce youngsters and other non-firearms owners to shooting, but possibly that doesn't matter to you.

If someone is timid, I can borrow my Dad's .22s and start them off with that. However, I'd rather start them off on a BB gun and then go to a 9mm. The first gun I ever fired was a 9mm, my friend and his sister first shot my .40, and my Mom first shot a .38 revolver. None of us were turned off by these. You are right, though, I don't plan on having kids.

Like I said, I've shot the .22 before, and my experience is that it is less fun than either a BB gun or a 9mm.

Hal
December 6, 2012, 03:45 PM
I take it you're not planning on having kids and grandkids and enjoying shooting with them. You're being very shortsighted about the best way to introduce youngsters and other non-firearms owners to shooting, but possibly that doesn't matter to you.Doesn't that sort of contradict your answer about the shotgun over a .22?
I did mention the buyer is a first time gun owner with no experience.

Buyer's willingness to seek proper training is iffy. My gut feeling is - no.

With this information arising, my vote changes to a pump-shotgun.
I'm curious here about one thing.
Why the change?
Shotguns have no real sights. Just a front bead.
Also - 870's are prone to short stroking in the hands of newbies.
Those two factors would seem to make the 870 an unwise choice for someone that's not going to go through any real training.

TAKtical
December 6, 2012, 03:52 PM
If budget is no barrier, get an AR in .223/5.56 and buy a .22lr conversion. Learn how to shoot with a 22 because its cheap and less intimidating, then switch to the 5.56 upper so that you have something reasonable for home defense.

Ala Dan
December 6, 2012, 03:53 PM
I agree with my friend, Mr. Al Thompson~!

Dr.Rob
December 6, 2012, 03:59 PM
Watch the holiday sale papers for Marlin Model 60's and Ruger 10/22's.

If they enjoy shooting, move up to the AR or shotgun.

A lot of AR 22 uppers are ammo fincky, not something that builds confidence in a new shooter.

Hal
December 6, 2012, 04:24 PM
BTW & FWIW & in the interest of full disclosure..

Here's what prompted this question:
http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=508253

allaroundhunter
December 6, 2012, 04:36 PM
I'm curious here about one thing.
Why the change?
Shotguns have no real sights. Just a front bead.
Also - 870's are prone to short stroking in the hands of newbies.
Those two factors would seem to make the 870 an unwise choice for someone that's not going to go through any real training.

Here is why:

There is nothing wrong with just a front bead sight. When you go through training, you are taught to focus on the front sight, and press the trigger. The bead sight is not in any way a drawback, and it is plenty precise for defense. As far as short-stroking? It is much easier to overcome (and fixed in a shorter amount of time) than issues posed by the other options.

An AR has a learning curve. There are many different manipulations that must be known and at least practiced occasionally to be able to operate it well. When someone is thrust into a defensive scenario, you fall back on muscle memory - or you panic. If you have not had enough training, then you are in trouble, especially with the AR platform.

So why not a .22? Rimfires are the most unreliable of modern firearms. That means if in a defensive situation a failure occurs, if the operator has not had enough practice or training (as the OP implies) there will be serious problems. *And I won't go into the issue of caliber here



A shotgun is more or less the simplest to operate and is more reliable than either of the other two. If a malfunction does happen, 99% of the time it is easier to clear and get back on target than an AR or semi-auto rimfire.

Teachu2
December 6, 2012, 04:48 PM
I'd take him to the range and let him shoot all three and decide.

Hal
December 6, 2012, 04:51 PM
There is nothing wrong with just a front bead sight. When you go through training, you are taught to focus on the front sight, and press the trigger. The bead sight is not in any way a drawback, and it is plenty precise for defense. As far as short-stroking? It is much easier to overcome (and fixed in a shorter amount of time) than issues posed by the other options.
And what if there is no training involved?

oneounceload
December 6, 2012, 04:53 PM
The pump will be the easiest to clear if there is a malf under normal circumstances - also, firing the 223 indoors in a small room will put a major hurt on your ears - as in deafening; the lower pressure shotgun, while loud, tends to not burst ear drums. Using light target loads for practice and stokes with moderate HD loads, it should be able to be fired by him, his wife, and child over about 9 or 10. While a shotgun may have only a front bead, it really isn't necessary - pointing the shotgun at moving targets is about using your hands and eyes to guide the muzzle to the appropriate place - at HD distances, that should do nicely

allaroundhunter
December 6, 2012, 04:56 PM
And what if there is no training involved?

Then it is still easier to only focus on one sighting system than trying to line up aperture or open rear/blade front sights.

Adding more just adds confusion. Asking someone who will not get enough practice or training to defend themselves with an AR is asking for trouble. It is just a bad choice.

Asking someone who will not get training to defend themselves with a gun that is more prone to malfunctions than most any other (rimfire) is also foolish. A .22 revolver at least lets you skip to the next round with the pull of the trigger if you get a *click* instead of a *bang*. Not getting training in malfunction clearance is bad enough, not getting it when using a semi-automatic .22 is worse.

Neo-Luddite
December 6, 2012, 05:05 PM
If the choice is forced to be just one for all scenarios including defense, I'd go 870.

For the novice it can be loaded with extra light target loads that would be easy on the shoulder. I like the 870 in plain riot gun format w/ 18.5" and a gold bead.

The .22 is not going to work for defense, and the AR would not be my first choice for a novice tactical shooter for defense. Plus, down the road, other guns may be acquired but that 870 will always be a useful workhorse.

Shortstroking is something that -does- happen. Range work buidls the muscle memory,

Skribs
December 6, 2012, 05:32 PM
Adding more just adds confusion. Asking someone who will not get enough practice or training to defend themselves with an AR is asking for trouble. It is just a bad choice.

How is an AR a worse choice than a shotgun as far as training is concerned? I'd also like to point out that a shotgun will STILL require training, especially if using just a single bead. You have to have the proper grip to aim with a bead.

I'm still failing to see why the 870 is omg-easy and the AR is elite-only. If someone could enlighten me as to why the AR needs significantly more training, I'd appreciate it.

allaroundhunter
December 6, 2012, 05:36 PM
How is an AR a worse choice than a shotgun as far as training is concerned? I'd also like to point out that a shotgun will STILL require training, especially if using just a single bead. You have to have the proper grip to aim with a bead.

I'm still failing to see why the 870 is omg-easy and the AR is elite-only. If someone could enlighten me as to why the AR needs significantly more training, I'd appreciate it.

An AR can malfunction in more ways than a pump shotgun. There is also much more weapon manipulation that goes on with the AR compared to a shotgun.

Will the pump shotgun still require training to be proficient with? Sure, never said it didn't.

I don't get why people think that a bead sight is hard to aim with?... Have you spent much time shooting with one? :rolleyes:

beatledog7
December 6, 2012, 05:50 PM
Of those three I'd choose the 870 for a never-before shooter, and there's why:

It has nothing to do with purpose, though the 870 is an excellent HD weapon. It's about mode of operation. I think new shooters should learn with a firearm that requires them to do something manually to chamber the next round so they don't get used to press-bang-press-bang, and so on until the thing runs dry.

Having to meaningfully and purposely start again from scratch before every round gets the job done right. It teaches in a very deliberate manner the things a shooter needs: stance, grip, sight alignment, sight picture, breath control, trigger control. It is the best way to create a disciplined shooter vice a spray and pray shooter.

Isaac-1
December 6, 2012, 05:56 PM
I say we need a LOT more information, type of home (apartment, free standing house, densely packed neighborhood, wood or brick walls, etc.) Also the size of the people operating the gun, a pump action 12 gauge can be hard to operate for a small framed female, it is simple physics, their arms are not long enough to properly cycle the action in the way it was designed to be used, this is something most can overcome with training, but that is another topic. The .22 is right out regardless, without this information, and assuming all uses can handle it my vote is an 870 properly fitted out with extended magazine, gun mounted light and probably a sight aiding device, I use a bright green light pipe fiber optic front sight on mine. The AR in 223 can be a valid option, particularly for the large number of ex-military personnel that have been extensively trained on its operation, however my biggest concern for an AR in a typical home defense situation is its lethal range. The typical lethal range of buck shot out of a shotgun is a couple of hundred yards at most (although a lucky shot could be lethal farther out), less if has to first go through a wall or two. With .223 that can be extended up to about a mile. It is important to remember you are responsible for where your bullets land, and while you should never shoot towards bystanders in the background, in the real world it is not always so easy, the the less distance your round is lethal in the background the better.

Ike

Hal
December 6, 2012, 06:02 PM
I don't get why people think that a bead sight is hard to aim with?... Have you spent much time shooting with one?
Actually - no I haven't - not in comparison to shooting other guns.
I own an 870, a Browning 20 ga BPS and two 12 ga Coach Guns.
I also had a single shot 12 ga Topper that I hunted with 30 years ago.

To make a long story short - I suck with a shotgun.
It's my fault 100% and it has little to nothing to do with training and/or more trigger time.
I've been blind in one eye since birth and have no depth perception.
It screws me up to shoot at moving targets, hit or catch a baseball, tennis, badmitten (sp?) or anything that involves something moving.

Add to that that I'm right handed and my right eye is my bad eye. That means in addition to not beaing able to pick up something moving, I have to shoot lefty using a rifle or shotgun.

I admit - I'm a bit biased against a shotgun.
However - I do believe very strongly that with the right fit and the right guideance, it can be a very good choice for a newer shooter.

However, however,,,I've also seen quite a few people (first time gun owners) start out with a shotgun, dislike the recoil, and end up just sticking it in the closet - where it sits until the wife of the guy that bought it gets tired of it being around.......then off it goes to a dippy buy back of some kind.
That's exactly what happened to my brother and my nephew.

Isaac-1
December 6, 2012, 06:15 PM
I understand the too much kick problem with shotguns, but there are lots of low recoil loads out there, just some macho types seem to think that they have to buy the hardest kicking buck shot the gun will take. One way to partly get around this is to use a standard 2 3/4 inch 20 Ga gun which has about as much kick as a reduced recoil 12 Ga buckshot round.

allaroundhunter
December 6, 2012, 06:17 PM
However, however,,,I've also seen quite a few people (first time gun owners) start out with a shotgun, dislike the recoil, and end up just sticking it in the closet - where it sits until the wife of the guy that bought it gets tired of it being around.......then off it goes to a dippy buy back of some kind.
That's exactly what happened to my brother and my nephew.

A limbsaver and low-recoil buckshot or birdshot will not do much harm at all

however my biggest concern for an AR in a typical home defense situation is its lethal range. The typical lethal range of buck shot out of a shotgun is a couple of hundred yards at most (although a lucky shot could be lethal farther out), less if has to first go through a wall or two. With .223 that can be extended up to about a mile.

A defensive .223/5.56 round will over penetrate less than a load of 12 ga 00 buckshot. So, the layout of the house should also be considered when choosing a weapon.

Skribs
December 6, 2012, 06:25 PM
Beatle, you can still spray-and-pray with a pump shotty, you just need to pump (which is very intuitive) in order to get that next shot off.

Isaac, rifle rounds overpenetrate less than pistol or shotgun rounds. It seems counterintuitive, but the reason is that the light, fast rifle rounds slow down pretty quick through light barriers, and once the rifle round loses velocity; reliable fragmentation and cavitation does not occur. The myth that "rifles are too strong for HD" is just that; a myth. Regardless, anything capable of stopping an attacker will go through several walls.

Regardless of whether the owner gets a shotgun or a rifle, he is going to need training. That training will be different for each, and some people might be subjectively better at one or the other, but I personally find the AR to be a more ergonomic platform. Unless you practice topping off, and if you have a mag or two on standby, reloading is quicker, and with the quicker follow-up shots, it is more forgiving if your accuracy isn't perfect.

Overall, for a "new shooter" with no budget limit, I don't see any reason why the shotgun would be a clear winner. Both the 870 and the AR-15 have a lot of support for aftermarket parts and training, both are capable of stopping an attacker, and both can be very ergonomic. I'm not saying the AR-15 is clearly the better choice, but I do not see it as being not-user-friendly (if it were, why would it be so popular?).

I think both are good platforms. Personally, I would say the AR-15 is better, but if this guy lived near me I'd suggest the 870, because none of the local outdoor ranges will let you shoot more than 1 round per second (and what's the point of a .223 if you can't rapid fire? that's how I'd shoot in HD anyway). Your options at an indoor range without such a restrictoin are pistol or shotgun.

Like I said, and I know the OP said it was out of the question, if SD is your primary reason for owning a firearm, I think a pistol should be first, though, because it works in HD, but it can be carried much easier, giving you more versatility.

allaroundhunter
December 6, 2012, 06:29 PM
I'm not saying the AR-15 is clearly the better choice, but I do not see it as being not-user-friendly (if it were, why would it be so popular?)

It is more popular because a) It is very versatile; and b) it is what the military uses and is "cooler" than the 870.

There are not many people that care about the manual of arms of a firearm when they purchase one. Those of us here on THR and other firearm forums are definitely the minority in that regard.

Looks sell.

USAF_Vet
December 6, 2012, 07:55 PM
Mind set. These people have it in mind to want a firearm for HD. Superb. Hopefully their Mind Set will lead them too...

Skill set. They have none, according to the OP. I gathered from the thread they are not as willing to acquire the skills through practice. Instead they seem focused on...

Tool set. Without the proper mind set and skill set, any tool they pick will be sub par. A single shot .22 short in the hands of someone who knows how to use it can be lethal to a bad guy. Any weapon in the hands of the untrained is a potential disaster.


Before recommending any fire arm to anyone, I try to find out their mind set and skill set. If either is lacking, or unwilling to be improved, I do not recommend a tool set.

JohnBiltz
December 7, 2012, 05:47 AM
You don't have to learn on a .22, its just cheaper to do so. Uncle Sam trains people to shoot just fine without any .22s and its not like 5.56 is recoil heavy. If they are not going to be shooting a lot a .22 is not going to save that much money and its not going to be nearly as good at HD as a 5.56.

In a perfect world it would be nice if people bought guns and got training on them and then shot them every week. The truth is most people don't. They buy a gun, shoot it some and then put it in a closet or under their socks. A surprising number of them do manage to use it effectively enough to save their lives when they need to.

45_auto
December 7, 2012, 08:08 AM
Your original post was:

Has never fired a gun before in his life.

The gun my be used for home defense by the man, his wife, and possibly young son - age not known.
Presumadly, the wife and son have never fired a firearm either.

You also said:

Budget for ammo is unknown - but - it could play a factor.
Buyer's access to a range is unknown.
Buyer's willingness to seek proper training is iffy. My gut feeling is - no.

and

And what if there is no training involved?

After I recommended the shotgun, then commented on using a .22 for introducing people to shooting, you asked:


Doesn't that sort of contradict your answer about the shotgun over a .22?
I did mention the buyer is a first time gun owner with no experience.

You didn't ask about introducing someone to the shooting sports. You specifically asked about home defense. Either of the other two choices (870 or AR) are far superior to a .22 for home defense.

Your descriptions I quoted above make it sound as if these people have no intention of training or practicing. Therefore I recommended a shotgun over an AR for the simplicity of operation. Keep the tube loaded with the safety off. All it takes to make it ready is to rack the slide. It's very difficult to accidentally drop the mag or put the safety on or lock the bolt back when you don't mean to on an 870. Any of those actions can easily happen to an inexperienced AR shooter under stress who hasn't touched or thought about the gun in literally years.

I shoot with a lot of people, and it's not too unusual for people who only come out when the weather's nice every spring to have to fiddle with their AR's before they remember what all the switches and buttons are for. Never seen anyone yet forget how to stuff shells in their pump shotgun and rack the slide.

Wouldn't be surprising if your friends left an AR in the closet for a couple of years, then when they need it in a hurry (for home defense, the perpose you asked for) they're looking at the side of it trying to remember which switch to turn or button to press or handle to pull.

Hal
December 7, 2012, 09:19 AM
Keep the tube loaded with the safety off.Keeping a loaded firearm in a house with a young child present sounds like a bad piece of advice.
How would you suggest a loaded pump gun be stored in that scenerio?
I'm sure such a thing exists and there's a way to secure a loaded shotgun.
I have zip use for one though so, I really don't care to explore it past asking here.

BTW - that's how I did do it, fully loaded but none in the chamber and stuck in the corner.
That was before our grandson came along and there was just my wife and I in the house.
Once our grandson got to the "wandering around the house" stage, I put the shot gun & the lever actions away in favor of something else.


Never seen anyone yet forget how to stuff shells in their pump shotgun and rack the slide
I have.
Matter of fact, I'm not too proud to admit I fumbled around and dropped a shell on the ground trying to load my 870 the first time I shot a round of sporting clays.
Stuff happens. Even during a "friendly" round of target shooting.

That's not to say that a case of "the fumbles" could just as easily affect someone (even myself) trying to insert a magazine.
Stuff happens.

brnmw
December 7, 2012, 09:48 AM
At first I was going to suggest a .22lr only becouse it's what I started out with...However

The gun my be used for home defense by the man, his wife, and possibly young son - age not known.
Presumadly, the wife and son have never fired a firearm either.

This will lean me toward the .223 Rem. Although depending on how young that young son is may determine other safety issues as well that I am not qualified to discuss since I do not know age and or maturity level of the child. ( I do believe in teaching them young but every child is different in terms of maturity at any age and that has to be determined by the parent and the parent alone)

benEzra
December 7, 2012, 10:05 AM
I'd suggest the AR in .223 (specifically a 16" barrel, flattop, midlength). Light recoil, accurate, reliable, easy to maintain, suitable for HD, and versatile.

Never seen anyone yet forget how to stuff shells in their pump shotgun and rack the slide
I occasionally had a little trouble with my dad's Mossberg, even at the range. I recall it had some sort of tiny little button ahead of the trigger guard that you had to press to unlock the action, or something, and individual shells are easy to fumble.

Skribs
December 7, 2012, 12:07 PM
Hal, there are a number of options that prevent unauthorized access while allowing quick authorized access, including long gun safes, trigger locks, and even simply cutting holes in the side of a handgun safe to allow the receiver/trigger of the shotgun to fit inside.

However, if the goal is that the kid can potentially use the long gun in HD situations, preventing him from accessing said long gun creates a contradictory issue.

Baba Louie
December 7, 2012, 01:07 PM
Which of these three guns for a new shooter?

Please, limit it to these three only:

AR in .22lr
AR in .233
Remington 12 ga. 870.

Brand new shooter with no experience at all with a firearm.
None.

Has never fired a gun before in his life.

The gun my be used for home defense by the man, his wife, and possibly young son - age not known.
Presumadly, the wife and son have never fired a firearm either. AR in .22lr of those three choices gets my vote. Cheap to feed, FUN to shoot, nil recoil, FUN to shoot, easy to reload new magazine, fun to shoot. Do suggest new owner and wife take a class on safety, basic marksmanship, etc and do same for son when he is old enough.

For someone who has never shot anything before, 12 ga can be intimidating as all getout due to recoil and noise. Need a place to practice as well. A .223 AR, while loud (and noise can be a flinch cause for some) does have minimal recoil, but practice costs are waaay over the same format in .22lr and they need a place to practice so they will gain skill and confidence.

In terms of self defense, a semi auto .22 is better than what they (don't) have now, granted perhaps not the best, but easy to use, reload, keep loaded magazine someplace secure and separate from empty rifle, etc

heavydluxe
December 7, 2012, 04:06 PM
Given the options you've laid out, I would definitely start a 'new shooter' on a rifle.

I think that there are pluses and minuses to both an AR in .22lr or .223 ... I would pick the .22lr for availability of ammo and it's ease for a new shooter. However, I think going whole bore with a centerfire in .223 may be fine depending on how well you know this 'new shooter'.


FWIW, outside of those three options, I would personally start any new shooter with a mag-fed bolt or semiauto .22lr (Savage MkII, Ruger 10/22, Marlin 795, for example).

22-rimfire
December 7, 2012, 04:27 PM
Brand new shooter with no experience at all with a firearm. None. Has never fired a gun before in his life.

22 Rifle such as a Marlin M60 or Ruger 10/22
22 Handgun such as a Ruger SR22-P, Mark III or 22/45 or a 22 revolver
A bigger caliber in whatever type of rifle or handgun they like better (after they learn the basics with the 22's)

Skribs, many can learn with a handgun or rifle more powerful than a 22LR, but why learn with something that costs that much to shoot and could cause bad habits related to recoil?

No shooting experience.... always a 22 and a simple to operate one to boot. They can use the 22 for home defense until they get some experience and knowledge to step up in the power level.

oneounceload
December 7, 2012, 04:37 PM
However, however,,,I've also seen quite a few people (first time gun owners) start out with a shotgun, dislike the recoil, and end up just sticking it in the closet

Only for those who also grab nothing but 00 Buck to start their practice with.

Shoot that AR inside with no hearing protection, you'll now know what deafness abd bleeding from the ear have in common.

LOTS of folks who are blind or have eye issues still shoot shotguns - I only wear one contact even though I need them in both eyes - this gives me one eye for distance and one for close reading. Have punched up starting in D class this year to A so far - and that's shooting tiny orange targets flying through the air at 50 yards - HD distance is NO problem - and therefore NO excuse

22-rimfire
December 7, 2012, 04:55 PM
I might add that IF the "new shooter" has no intention to learn to shoot or shoot beyond hitting a man sized target... I would go with a 38spl revolver and a 12 ga pump shotgun and these would be strictly for home defense. They probably won't shoot 5 rounds with the shotgun and 25 rounds with the handgun. So, go with something to make them feel "protected", but it is somewhat of an illusion.

No pistol grips on the shotgun, just a plain old shotgun with about a 20" barrel.

Hal
December 8, 2012, 02:51 PM
LOTS of folks who are blind or have eye issues still shoot shotguns - I only wear one contact even though I need them in both eyes - this gives me one eye for distance and one for close reading. Have punched up starting in D class this year to A so far - and that's shooting tiny orange targets flying through the air at 50 yards - HD distance is NO problem - and therefore NO excuseWhat excuse???
I believe after living with it (having one good eye) for 24 hours a day for 60 plus years.....I'm in a bit of a better positon to know what I can and can't do.

I suck at anything that moves. So what? It's never been a big deal to me in my 60 years. I've just learned to adjust to it.
No biggie.

mf-dif
December 8, 2012, 08:16 PM
AR in 5.56 and a drop-in .22 kit.

danez71
December 9, 2012, 12:04 PM
....you just need to pump (which is very intuitive) in order to get that next shot off.

Personally, I dont think pumping a long gun is intuitive at all; particularly for a new shooter and heavy recoil.

For that reason, of the 3 choices, Id lean towards the other two.

Ive seen .223 pass through 10lb cast iron weights (weight lifting weights). Ive also seen them pass through a lot of other things tougher than drywall and still carry lethal energy. I know what the boxoftruth type tests show but Ive seen it 1st hand waaay too many times to ignore. Its also damn loud for HD (small enclosed area)

Personally, I wouldnt recommend a 223 for HD in general.

For those reasons, based on the OP, and 3 choices, Id say the 22.

But in the spirit of THR, I'll recommend something else. For the cost of the AR 223, buy a 22 rifle and a double barrel shot gun.


That could change though...


The OP said 'training' is not likely. What are the chances of just shooting for fun? If they are willing to do that, then familiarity is better acheived and the 870 move up.

Franco2shoot
December 10, 2012, 09:41 AM
If these folks are even remotely contemplating a Home defense possibility have them take some classes teaching how to use a shotgun. A .22 in a HD situation is only going to pi$$ off any nutjob that is stupid enough to break into an occupied home or apartment. Only a very well placed shot will stop his threat, very unlikely in the hands of a novice. A shotgun on the other hand, removes all accuracy concerns.

KKKKFL

Skribs
December 10, 2012, 10:48 AM
Danez, anything that is going to penetrate through enough tissue is going to go through walls.

Hal
December 11, 2012, 08:47 AM
Re: sound level of the .223:

http://www.freehearingtest.com/hia_gunfirenoise.shtml

According to the above link, W/an 18 inch barrel, the .223 is at 155.5db

For reference:
12 ga w/28 " barrel is 151db
12 ga w/26" barrel is 156.10db
12 ga w/18" barrel is 161.5db

.380 acp is 157.7db
.38spl is 156db
9x19 is 159.8db
.45acp is 157db

Even the lowly .25acp is listed @ 155.0 db.

Just an FYI....& I agree that simple db readings are only part of the story.

A .22 in a HD situation is only going to pi$$ off any nutjob that is stupid enough to break into an occupied home or apartment.Join the NRA and get the monthly magazine. The Armed Citizen section has listed hundreds upon hundreds of instances where a .22 was used to great effect to stop an aggressor.

roadchoad
December 11, 2012, 08:51 AM
.22 ar. Won't scare the wife and kid with a huge recoil or blast. When they are comfortable with it, it is an easy gun to sell and moving to a 223 ar will be simple.

benEzra
December 13, 2012, 09:07 PM
Shoot that AR inside with no hearing protection, you'll now know what deafness abd bleeding from the ear have in common.
Hal beat me to it, but a .223, a HD-length 12-gauge, and a 9mm/.40/.45 pistol are about the same loudness, and none of them are as loud as a .357 revolver.

Personally, I dont think pumping a long gun is intuitive at all; particularly for a new shooter and heavy recoil.
I tend to agree. I think it's only intuitive if you've lived and breathed pump shotguns for a long time, and that's not true of a lot of us.

Ive seen .223 pass through 10lb cast iron weights (weight lifting weights). Ive also seen them pass through a lot of other things tougher than drywall and still carry lethal energy. I know what the boxoftruth type tests show but Ive seen it 1st hand waaay too many times to ignore. Its also damn loud for HD (small enclosed area)

Personally, I wouldnt recommend a 223 for HD in general.
Load choice makes a huge difference in .223 penetration, just as it does with 12-gauge. Midweight civilian .223 JHP (*not* FMJ) penetrates less in drywall than most pistol JHP and even 12-gauge 00 buckshot.

orionengnr
December 13, 2012, 09:28 PM
You don't have to learn on a .22, its just cheaper to do so. Uncle Sam trains people to shoot just fine without any .22s...
...because he isn't paying for the ammo. We are...or, to be more accurate, about 50% of us are...
If money is no object, I would buy a nice AR with a .22LR conversion kit. I looked at a CMMG unit that seems to draw some favorable reviews, and it runs about $125-150.

.22LR ammo is cheap and (for now, still somewhat) plentiful. Spend a bunch of time and very little money learning the AR MOA using .22LR ammo...then move to .223/5.56 when the situation dictates.

Hokkmike
December 13, 2012, 10:32 PM
Another vote for AR in .223.

rskent
December 14, 2012, 04:53 AM
Another vote for an AR in 5.56.
If they were open to other options for home defense I would strongly suggest a Glock 19.

bannockburn
December 14, 2012, 05:45 AM
I would go with an AR in .223 with the option of adding a .22LR conversion kit to it.

mcdonl
December 14, 2012, 06:47 AM
A .22 in a HD situation is only going to pi$$ off any nutjob that is stupid enough to break into an occupied home or apartment. Only a very well placed shot will stop his threat, very unlikely in the hands of a novice.KKKKFL

Criminals have a very high sense of self preservation. In a home, being shot at and knowing you are hit is some pretty heavy stuff (Been to shootings of .380 and .22) and the thoughts of (Oh God im going to die) was common with both of them although neither did.

The damage is secondary to the "Oh crap, someone is shooting at me"....

Krusty783
December 14, 2012, 10:50 AM
AR in 5.56 and a drop-in .22 kit.
+1

.22 ammo is cheap and not intimidating. .223 isn't that rough either, but it's definitely enough for a SD/HD situation.

12 gauge recoil can be quite intimidating. Why would you give a complete neophyte a 12 gauge unless you're trying to make them think twice about firearms? Take someone who's never shot before, buy them an 870 and take them to a range to shoot some birdshot and 3 1/2 mag rounds ? Not if you want to remain their friend...

If this is something that's not going to be practiced, or used , and kept under a bed, etc. Then there are a few options:
A).223 AR with frangible ammo
B) 9mm handgun/hi-point with frangible ammo (hi-points might not be top of the heap, but a rifle-format firearm can be more intimidating than a handgun)
(if this is truly a HD firearm, frangible bullets will mitigate the risk of taking out friendlies 2 rooms away from the action.
C) 20 ga. auto-loader with birdshot
-Working a shotgun slide is not natural, and could easily stump someone with little experience in a high stress/life or death scenairo. An auto-loader removes this risk. And you don't need 00 buck or a slug to shoot someone across a room. Smaller shot will also reduce the chance of downrange collateral damage.
D) 12 ga auto-loader with birdshot.
E) Taurus Judge
-Intuitive point and shoot and 410 or 45 shells. Good for CQ situations.

allaroundhunter
December 14, 2012, 02:07 PM
12 gauge recoil can be quite intimidating. Why would you give a complete neophyte a 12 gauge unless you're trying to make them think twice about firearms? Take someone who's never shot before, buy them an 870 and take them to a range to shoot some birdshot and 3 1/2 mag rounds ?

Why would I give a 12 ga to a new shooter? Because it is easy to learn on, ammo is always available, it is very versatile, and it is a great defensive gun.

12 ga recoil with birdshot and even low recoil buckshot is more than tolerable for most. You can add a limbsaver and make it even easier. There is no reason to take someone new to guns to the range and give them some 3.5" mag rounds, heck, if you did that to me I wouldn't be your friend and I have been shooting for quite some time.

The problem with a semi-automatic shotgun is that some (especially cheaper ones) are very finicky with ammo. If one malfunctions, clearing it is not exactly common sense. A pump is less liable to malfunction, especially if you just take the person out to shoot some clay pigeons once in a while so that they are operating the gun on occasion.

And fwiw, I have bought someone an 870 and taken them to the range with it on the very same day. My little brother was shooting it like a champ, and the recoil didn't bother him a bit (and he is 5' 0" and 95 lbs).... He recently used that same gun to defend himself from a feral dog and fired 3 shots of low-recoil 00 buck without short-stroking the gun once. He doesn't even remember the recoil, which is as to be expected in situations like that.

JBrady555
December 14, 2012, 03:06 PM
If you have no firearms presently I would go with the Remington 870. They are awesome for home defense, especially for new shooters in my opinion, , great for hunting all manner of food if ever needed, and you can play clay target games with it.

ApacheCoTodd
December 14, 2012, 05:07 PM
AR in .223. The Linkin-logs/Legos of the firearms market.

But really... A 10-22 first.

Daveboone
December 14, 2012, 06:27 PM
If the main shooting individual wasnt getting training, I certainly wouldnt encourage either of the family members learning from them.
Simplicity, repeated a hundred times for safety sake for a new shooter who isnt getting instruction, and that wouldnt include any semi automatic. There is no more difficult gun to learn to shoot reliably than a pump action shotgun. It is difficult to get new pump shooters to understand how briskly and consistently they need to be "pumped" for reliable feed.
If ammo budget is any sort of concern, obviously there is a budget concern for the gun itself.
If a semi automatic is the main choice, without a doubt, I would recommend (as others have) a well proven Marlin model 60 or Ruger 1022. The Rugers quickly and easily removed magazine has a new shooters safety edge over the tube feed, and the inexpensive price should leave any budget plenty of money for ammo and a shooting club membership for practice.

allaroundhunter
December 14, 2012, 08:50 PM
It is difficult to get new pump shooters to understand how briskly and consistently they need to be "pumped" for reliable feed.

It really is not difficult to teach someone how to pump a shotgun. You don't have to teach them that they already should have rearward pressure on the pump when the pull the trigger as it is not necessary. You teach them to pull the trigger, and slam the pump towards them. Once there, they don't even have to slam it forward immediately. They could hold it there for 5 minutes and then as soon as they were ready they could inch it forward and it would go into battery.

You do not need to be extremely fast operating a pump for it to be reliable.

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