Weapons question

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OK, I'd like to buy my very first gun. Neither Kevin or I have ever been into hunting. I've fired a handgun a few times. I'd rather not walk into Wallyworld; I'm thinking a swap shop, maybe? With all that has happened recently, I'd feel better if someone around here were armed. I am completely open to joining a shooting club, or ANYTHING you guys and girls tell me to do. We planned on spending some time checking this all out before we move to MO in the spring, but I think sooner is better than later. I don't have much of an idea where to begin. Rather not have much paperwork. I've read the archives, but I still need you're help.

-- Cathy in NY (hrnofplnty@yahoo.com), September 18, 2001


I would suggest that you buy private. Pawn Shops are the same as dealers, really. But it is probably best to just get something even if you do get papers on it. Do they still have private sale in the newspapers there?

Go to a gun shop and speak with the people. They are very helpful and it is good to get to know them a bit. They will be happy to aid you in shooting, as well as reccomending where you might go to practice and the like.

You need to shoot and become very familiar with the firearm, it's a tool that requires respect. Best of luck!

Are you looking for a particular "type" reccomendation????

-- (notsayin@dot.com), September 18, 2001.

Get a shotgun. It is has a long barrel, so you might be able to carry it in your car (depending on your state). It also creates a big spread pattern, helping to ensure that you hit whatever you aim at. It is better than a pistol. With a shotgun, you just have to aim close, and you will hit what you are aiming at. I suggest a 20 gauge or a 12 gauge. It really is the most versatile gun out there. It can be used for Hunting, Self defense, and target shooting (Clay targets). Good Luck. Don't worry about the paperwork, unless you are concerned about a govt. crackdown on weapons. If this is so, I suggest something a little nastier. But buy from a reputable person.

-- Bill (bill@bill.com), September 18, 2001.

agree with Bill 100%.

-- lesley (martchas@bellsouth.net), September 18, 2001.

If you have an acreage, a 12 gage definately comes in handy getting rid of varmits. A shotgun has a kick, so get used to it, so your not wincing or afraid to use it. Shotguns have the loads of shot, a rifle shoots a smooth bullet. Ya don't have to be as good a shot with a shotgun. A rifle will also fly long distances if you miss your target, where as a shot gun will not go as far. (I think I have heard a rifle can go a mile or more? not sure, but sounds right) And the 12 gage makes someone think twice when you make the loading sound. :o) Definately go to a shooting range, you don't have to join a club unless you want to. THe people at the range can even let you try a few types of guns before purchase, at least ours did. A friend rented a 45 pistol and it had a kick. (I am female, and once a 30-06 knocked me on my keister.) Ya just have to get used to the different types. There are types that do not kick so bad, but then they might not stop a skunk or Opossom.

-- notnow (notnow05@yahoo.com), September 18, 2001.

General George S. Patton said it best "Fear the man who has only one gun... For he probably knows how to use it."

-- bill (bill@bill.com), September 18, 2001.

On the question of rifle vs. shotgun . . . how about BOTH?

There are some combination rifle / shotgun combinations made out there, manufactured by Savage Arms company and others. I own two combination firearms: one a .22LR over 20 gauge, the other a 30/30 over 12 gauge. Both good guns. The single shot capacity means slower firing speed; first shot should count anyway.

My answer I guess sort of leans to if you live in the country already, on a homestead so if otherwise. . . pump shotgun is pretty safe way to go.

-- j.r. guerra (jrguerra@boultinghousesimpson.com), September 18, 2001.

If the rifle/shotgun combo was so great. You would see respectable company's like winchester or S&W or Remington make them. Go with a 12 gauge pump. Stay away from mossberg, as they are a huge piece of crap. If you are leaning toward a rifle, there is a 9 mm rifle that I believe COLT makes. Just in case you ever want to buy a pistol. You will only need one type of ammo. I still say stay with the shotgun.

-- duh (jasonPatrick@yahoo.com), September 18, 2001.

Alrighty then, looks like a shotgun will fit the bill. Occasionally, I see one in the paper, so I'll keep looking. I'm in the city, moving to land in spring. Thanks for all your answers.

-- Cathy in NY (hrnofplnty@yahoo.com), September 18, 2001.

A reasonable question, duh . . . with some possible answer.

One reason why combination guns have not caught on in a big way here is that gun manufacturers prefer selling multiple firearms to the same people. They would prefer that gun owners would have to buy one or shotguns, one or more rifles, etc.

Another reason is that many American sportsmen hunt one variety of game at one time. In Europe, where combination guns are very popular, the hunter can kill deer, wild pig, birds, rabbits at the same time, and having a firearm specializing on one 'type' of game handicaps the hunter big time. The homesteader can use this type of firearm much more frequently than realized; they spend much time out of doors and have much more opportunity to shoot it than the normal hunter.

Another reason for combination guns not being as popular as they should be is that 'regulating' the sights of the firearm is very hard, hence the high prices of the firearms. Regulating the firearm is the process of making sure that the barrels of the firearm point to the same impact spot, since the sights used are for both (or more) barrels. Some of the most expensive firearms in the world are European combination guns, selling for thousands (yes, THOUSANDS) of dollars. If you don't believe me, check out the latest Gun Digest list of products in the back of the book.

The Savage 24F is no where near that expensive; $400 dollars and up, purchased new. You can find used ones at gun shows eclipsing these numbers, for sure. Savage Firearms make good guns, up to the standards of Ruger, Remington, Winchester, and others. They innovated many of the products used today. They are good guns; I don't feel handicapped by using them at all. Neither will you. This model has been manufactured since the 50's, I think; if it was a piece of crap, people would have known about it and stopped buying a long time ago.

I'm not denegrating any of the other gun manufacturers; in fact, I had forgotten until now that Springfield Arms makes the M-6, another combination firearm that is used by the military as a survival weapon.

Just expanding on my logic.

-- j.r. guerra (jrguerra@boultinghousesimpson.com), September 19, 2001.

I did it!!! I just bought my first gun! Drumroll, please....... Ok, it's a 20 gauge shotgun, Mossberg Model 500, I went to a sporting goods store that my Dad always did business with. They sent me home with an application to a rod and gun club, and 3 boxes of shells, all purpose load. The man said this is their best selling shotgun. Open for any/all feedback.

-- Cathy in NY (hrnofplnty@yahoo.com), September 19, 2001.

Cathy - Let me be the first to say, Welcome to the Fraternity. Shooting is a really fun sport. Gun clubs can be great because they can help you learn the proper way to handle that beast, plus they offer all kinds of shooting sports. When you get really confident in your abilities, see if you can arrange an "Annie Oakley" style shoot.

Three to seven people stand on a line and shoot at the clay target (that is moving away from the entire line), it is a dollar a shot. If the first pulls his trigger and misses and the second hits it. The second collects a dollar from the one who missed. Repeat the action and it get's really interesting. The first to shoot in round one is that last to shoot in round two. Really fun.

good luck.

-- Bill (bill@bill.com), September 19, 2001.

While I was at the store, I couldn't help but notice there were no handguns. I asked what was involved in a purchase in NY, and was told to expect a 7-8 month wait while a background check, and permits and licences, etc., were taken care of. He said this county is one of the toughest in the state. (In NJ, you walked into a store, filled out the papers, picked out your pistol, and had it within a week!)

-- Cathy in NY (hrnofplnty@yahoo.com), September 19, 2001.

Congratulations, Cathy! Sounds like the people are very helpful, too. 20 guages are great for beginners especially. They don't have the kick of the 12 guage. Do they even make 16 guage shotguns anymore???

If you get some slugs for it it can be a good short range rifle as well.

The UPS man said he is delivering tons of ammo.....

-- Doreen (bisquit@here.com), September 20, 2001.

Before you get the gun, get some FORMAL training. Uncle Bob out back with a six pack is not training. Without knowing how to use the gun, then its more danger to you than not having it.

If its general home protection from human you need, then a short barrel 12gague would be ok. If your worried about animals then a long barrel with some deer shot would work. Dont worry about the paperwork. Dont assume a swap meet is going to get you out of paper work. Depending on where you live it may or may not. I dont know NY gun laws so check around.

-- Gary (gws@redbird.net), September 24, 2001.

Great purchase. The 500 is good because you can get several different barrels for the shotgun depending on what you want to do. For home defense you can get a 18.5 or 20" barrel then if you want they make longer for clay shooting or rifled barrels for shooting slugs.

One thing though, people may say that you can just point in the general direction and use a shotgun at close range. Well, the shotgun is one of the most powerful at short range but you still need to practice. When you get to the range I would head to the pistol range and practice having the gun at low ready, then shouldering and firing at a close target or even better two widely spaced close targets. One thing to remember is that for training to be worth the time you need to train at what you expect to be using the gun for.

-- Jason (jh309@prism.gatech.edu), November 09, 2001.

I say follow Guerra's advice. Anyone with that name has to know about weapons!

Cathy, here in Orygun, you have to take a gun safety course to be able to get a concealed weapons permit., and there is also a required hunter safety class if you want a hunting license. (I think, I don't have one--yet--as I only hunt wild tofudebeest). You might investigate one of these classes, to get a handle on some basics.


-- joj (jump@off.c), November 09, 2001.

j.r. knows quite a bit about weapons.

Congrats on the 20 gauge. Shooting is a great pass time as well as a terrific defense system.

-- Kenneth in N.C. (wizardsplace13@hotmail.com), November 21, 2001.

I want agun because for my safty only

-- V.Jabez solomon sharrock (jcvdsrock@rediffmail.com), December 23, 2002.

I want a gun because for my safty only

-- V.Jabez solomon sharrock (jcvdsrock@rediffmail.com), December 23, 2002.

In my neighborhood the bigger a mans gun is , the more he becomes sexually appealing to the women around here.

So I'd like to know how does one aquire permits for a Bazooka. And do you have to have a friend who can steal one from the U.S. military or can you buys these things through mail order ?

-- Steve (at@home.com), December 24, 2002.

I've got a Bradley tank in the drive I'm about ready to get rid of. It's cold in the winter, hot in the summer, gets terrible mileage, insurance is outragious and shells get harder to find every day. Seriously, Cathy, Missouri is a "gun friendly" state. When you get here check with the Dept. of Conservation. Heck, do it now: www.missouriconservation.org. They've got free shooting seminars and shooting ranges. I think the scattergun was a good choice. Be sure to subscribe to the "Conservationist". It's a free monthly glossy mag. for Mo. residents.

-- Marty in Mo, (martys@iland.net), December 29, 2002.

You haven't seen much here in the way of real gun knowledge. Try Frugal Squirrels HomePage for Survivalists, Defense Review.com. True- Patriot.com, AR-15.com. The best way to buy is from private parties. Do a Google seach for The Gun List, and The Shotgun News trade newspapers, and order a sample copy. Sometimes your local newsstand has them. Call and ask. A private seller need not concern himself with asking for your ID, or whether or not you are domiciled in his stated. A "FFL (federal firearms license) dealer must do so. You can run a want ad in those papers for $10 or so, and there's dozens of gun "forums" on the Net. Nearly all of them welcome both for sale and want ads for guns. Also Search for CSP Gun Talk, Tom Bower's Submachinegun Page (go to general gun discussion) Feel free to email me at andyjack32@yahoo.com.

-- whydoyou needtoknow (andyjack32@yahoo.com), February 22, 2003.

Submachine guns?

-- Marty in Mo. (martys@iland.net), February 22, 2003.

The most important thing for any gun owner to remember is. 1 There is no such thing as an unloaded gun. 2 On picking up a firearm always check to see if there`s a round in the chamber. 3 Never point a gun at anyone you are not prepared to kill. 4 Never take a loaded gun into a house or vehicle. 5 Rest your finger on the trigger guard (not the trigger). 6 Release the safety catch only when you are about to fire. Always put safety first. Most accidents happen because someone "thought the gun was empty" or the gun went off as I was cleaning it (it is impossible to clean a loaded gun). One accident is one too many, attend a safety course , shooting is a good hobby but a gun of any kind is the most dangerous thing you will ever own, keep it out of reach of minors.

-- Gerry Clarke. (gfclarke2003@yahoo.com), April 06, 2003.

good buy on the boss (moss) i have a 12 guage 500A and love it it came with a long 28 inch barrel and the 18.5 in barrel it is perfect for my needs.another overlooked weapon is the Hi point 9mm carbine it is a rifle that fires pistol ammo semi- auto it is compact and very manuverable inside of a house and apt. it also is very accurate in texas women love this firearm because of it's low kick.it also has a look of an h&k fire arm with out the high dollar price did i mention that there are shot shells for the 9mm it can be loaded and fire like a shot gun not much pellets but used to blast a snake apart on a human it is an attention getter. noone asked did you move to a house or apt? i only ask because if the 20 guage is used in an apt. be careful not to penetrate your neighbors wall, the liability is very high. also if you fire at a range remember the day shooting differs from the night, when most intruders prefer, the fire arm will appear to explode and a grate flame is visible almost blinding no,the gun did not break it is normal in the night.so don't freak out also in an emergency you won't have time to put on your ear plugs inside of a house the blast will scare everyone including the neighbors a block away, be prepared for it at a shooting range the blast is not loud because of the open field and ear protection.it is a diffrent story at night. be prepared for this experience, for it may save your life god forbid you ever need it. your friend a former texas law officer.

-- carlos (viper078@hotmail.com), April 28, 2003.

I would suggest a 20 gauge pump shotgun, for self defence, light kick, very easy to handle, and will stop anyone at close range, [under 50 feet or so]use duck or goose loads. Also is fun to shoot at targets.

-- raymond wells (raypat64@aol.com), May 20, 2003.

You are way ahead to start with a .22 autorifle, like the Marlin M60 Glenfield. Such can be bought from private sellers for $50 or less. Then move up to a 4" barreled Browning Buckmark .22lr pistol. Avoid the longer, or thicker barrels. Get the skinny barreled version. It's a lot lighter to carry in a holster. Once you have some real ability with these guns, you can look into a 9mm carbine, like the Marlin Camp Gun 9which is out of production, but finable on GunsAmerica.com, $300 or so. There's the $150 Yugoslavian SKS, too. It's a good autorifle, and its practice ammo is just 8c a shot. Then you can look into A compact, lw 9mm, like the $180 Star BM (at Aim Surplus or J & G Sales. Fine little pistol. Winchester 100 packs of 9mm ball ammo are about $11 at walmart. The CorBon 100 gr PowrRBall is the type of ammo for defense.

-- John Russell (wellarussell@yahoo.com), December 27, 2004.

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