Guns for Beginners: Shooting Basics

Now we get down to the real thing.  Though you can’t really get proper instruction on the subject in text alone, I will, in this article, try to explain the basic principles of shooting for those who are new to shooting.

Many of us firearm enthusiasts have been shooting since childhood, and to us, shooting is second nature, with many of the basics being things we assume don’t need to be explained, but new adult shooters are a rapidly growing demographic, and if you’re part of that demographic, keep reading, because this is for you.

We’ve been over safety before.  If not, I suggest you back up and go see my “Guns for Beginners: Safety,” article before you pick up a gun.

There are a few key fundamentals to your shooting that you’ll need to master.  Stance, grip, trigger control, and sight picture.  All four are necessary for basic shooting, and the skills you develop will transfer between firearms.

Stance:  Starting at the beginning, a good foundation is key.  There are different shooting stances of course, and for the new shooter a flat squared stance may be tempting to take.  A good stance to start with will have your left foot forward and right foot back with your weight mostly on your rear foot (obviously reversed for the left handed).  This will help to line your eyes and hands up for proper grip and sight picture.

Grip:  This one varies between long guns and hand guns.  With a long gun you’re going to have three points of contact.  The forearm, the grip, and the buttstock.  You’ll want to firmly press the buttstock against your shoulder.  Don’t leave empty space or room for play.  The more firm it is here, the better you’ll be able to absorb recoil as a push into the trunk of your body, rather than a punch against your shoulder.  This is often called a “Shoulder weld,” and rightfully so, as if you’ve done it properly, recoil will treat gun and body as one object firmly anchored to the ground rather than two objects colliding.  The grip on the forearm will both keep the gun upright and control the gun’s direction, and should be firm.  The grip behind the trigger, be it on a straight stock, thumbhole, or pistol grip will be not too tight, but enough to stabilize your hand for proper trigger control.

Consider the positions of your arms.  Your left arm should be fairly straight and gripping the forearm as far out as the design of the gun allows (unless you’re using a forward vertical grip), and if using a straight stock your right elbow should be elevated level with the gun (not dipping down low), or can be low if you’re using a pistol grip.  The straighter your right wrist is the better.  If you have to cock your wrist for a proper grip, you likely need a longer stock.

In the case of shooting handguns, the grip is different.  You’ll only have one point of contact, so you should wrap both hands around the grip.  This means your dominant hand will wrap around grip, and the support hand should cup around the dominant hand.  Thumbs should ride high and both should be touching and pointing forward.  This is known as the thumbs forward grip.  It can be slightly modified to fit the shape of the gun as needed. Your grip should be firm but not tight.  If you’re squeezing so hard your hand is shaking, you may need to back off a bit.  Just the same if the gun is jumping loose from your grip, you need to tighten it.

You may sometimes see an improper handgun grip where the off hand is placed below the grip instead.  This offers no real benefits in stabilizing your aim, and is considered outdated.  Obviously never tilt your gun, hold it sideways, or upside down.  Doing so offers nothing in terms of controlling your aim, and can cause the gun to misfeed and jam.

Sight Picture:  So you have three things to look at.  A front sight, a rear sight, and a target.  But you can really only focus on one at a time right?  Though many people believe you close one eye while aiming, this should really only be done when shooting with scopes, or for very long range.  At medium, and especially handgun range, it’s advised to keep both eyes open.  If you have trouble focusing, you’ll find squinting a bit will help clear your vision.  When getting a sight picture, your front sight is the most significant.  First put the front sight on target, then line up the rear sight to the front sight.  When firing your focus should primarily be on the front sight.  If you’re shooting a shotgun with a bead sight, it’s even simpler.  Just look at the target and put the bead on the target.

By keeping both eyes open you widen your perception, and can still see moving objects, as well as the context of the larger area you’re shooting in.

Trigger Control:  The last factor before a bullet comes out of your gun is trigger control.  This is something best built through lots and lots of practice, but I’ll dispense some simple advice here.

Resist the temptation to use your joint.  Press the trigger down with the middle of your last digit.  Strive to use only the muscles of the finger its self to pull the trigger without using your palm to squeeze.  Think of the trigger as a button you’re pressing rather than something to squeeze.  You’re not making juice here.  I say to press, don’t pull or squeeze.  The trigger should be pressed down with even pressure the entire way.  It doesn’t need to be quick.  Don’t jerk, and try not to flinch, or guess when the gun goes off.  The actual firing should come as a surprise to you.  This is why I always recommend starting with something with low recoil as you’ll be less likely to develop a flinch reflex.  During recoil keep the trigger held down.  This is known as follow through.  Lastly release the trigger all the way to allow for a full reset.

That’s the basics of how to shoot.  Of course text can’t do much for you without lots of practice, so hit the range, take a class, and have fun learning.

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Guns for Beginners: Magazine vs. Clip

It’s fairly common for people who aren’t firearms enthusiasts to mistakenly call a magazine a clip.  What’s the difference?  Aren’t they the same thing?  No, allow me to explain.

The word magazine actually goes back to the middle ages where it referred to a room where cannonballs and powder were stored.  As the age of exploration and naval warfare came about the term referred to a portion of a ship that served the same purpose.  So when repeating arms came about the term magazine was already an obvious choice to describe the part of the gun that holds the ammunition.  Early guns would have a built in tube, and later vertical magazine that held ammunition and fed it into the chamber. 

Since the magazine was built into the gun, a quick method of refilling the magazine was devised.  That would be the stripper clip, or clip for short.  A clip is what it sounds like.  A piece of bent metal that holds the rounds together.  The clip full of ammunition is placed on top of the magazine and the ammunition is pushed down into the magazine.  The clip is then discarded and the action is closed. Some clips such as moon clips which can be used with some revolvers, and the en-bloc clip that the M1 Garand uses insert entirely into the gun, but are still just a simple piece of shaped metal, and not the gun’s magazine its self.

Later when semi-auto handguns and rifles with removable magazines became more common, the confusion began, as a removable means of refilling one’s gun was already being commonly called a “clip.”  Though removable magazines far outnumber external stripper clips these days, the term has stuck around for over a century after removable magazines came about.

So to simplify that.  A clip fills a magazine.  A magazine feeds a chamber.  Magazines are sometimes part of the gun, sometimes removable.  A gun can work without a clip, it can’t work without a magazine.  A clip is a simple piece of bent metal.  A magazine is bigger, more box like, and contains a spring.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/d1/Stripperclip1.jpg/220px-Stripperclip1.jpg

Clip

http://media.midwayusa.com/productimages/880x660/Primary/577/577337.jpg

Magazine

Some dismiss this difference, but they are two entirely different things, and proper terminology will tend to get you respect from the gun community.

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Have the Gun Grabbers Given Up?

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/388080/new-anti-gun-strategies-dave-kopel

The repeated failures of new gun bans have caused a change in strategy amongst the anti-gun rights lobby.  They’re moving away from outright bans, but don’t relax just yet.  Their new strategies are a lot more devious.  Rather than prohibiting weapons, the new focus is on prohibiting persons.  The new goal is to make felons out of everyday people. 

It’s a different sort of dishonesty in its approach, but this change in strategy from overt offensive against guns and into a more covert world of regulations and technicalities signifies a major surrender by the anti-gunners.

This isn’t a time to rest on our laurels though.  Now is a good time for gun owners to take the figurative offensive.  We shouldn’t be content to have defended our rights, we should be teaching new people to enjoy shooting, and spreading awareness of the basic human right to self defense.  The next battle shouldn’t be one where the antis get to decide the terms.  Let’s turn the tide and create a positive public image of gun ownership. 

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Guns for Beginners: Safety

There is a saying among shooters.  “The safety is between your ears.”  Safety is an absolute necessity for all gun owners, and it isn’t about a little lever or button on your gun, or politicians pushing legislation.  Gun safety is all about personal responsibility.  Today I’ll be attempting to provide you with simple, understandable, and practical explanation of the basic disciplines of gun safety.

There are four basic rules of gun safety.  These are not suggestions, they are absolutes.  Following these rules means you won’t cause harm to yourself or others.  Failing to follow them could very well cause the exact opposite.  They are:  Always point the gun in a safe direction, keep your finger off the trigger unless you are ready to fire, always treat the gun as if it is loaded, and when not using a gun properly secure it.

Seems simple right?  Plenty of people can’t seem to obey these laws.  We see these laws blatantly ignored in film even by characters who clearly work around guns and should know better, and we see the Internet is chock full of idiots ignoring all of them at once in a single picture.  For the sake of this article, I’m going to assume that the reader is an intelligent person, who won’t blatantly ignore the rules of gun safety if he or she was aware of them.  So let’s move along and I’ll break down these rules with a simple explanation of what these rules mean and why they’re important.

Rule 1:  Always point the gun in a safe direction.  So what is a safe direction?  First of all, it’s not toward any person, animal, or object you aren’t planning to shoot.  That means the gun should only be pointed at your target or at the ground.  If you’re handling a gun, simply remember that the gun should be treated as if it could fire at any moment.  Don’t point it anywhere that it could fire that would be harmful.  In other words, never point a gun at anything you don’t intend to destroy.  That includes not only being aware of where it’s facing, but being sure of your target AND what is beyond it.  Remember that bullets don’t like to stop when they hit something.  Consider what is behind your target as well.  What’s on the other side of that wall?  And remember that gravity exists, and sooner or later a bullet fired upward has to come down, and there are fairly regular instances of some unfortunate person being in the way when that bullet lands.

Rule 2:  Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire.  This is known as trigger discipline, and if you don’t practice it, you can expect to be derided, insulted, and possibly kicked off the range.  All too often people who don’t know what they’re doing hold a gun by the trigger causing the gun to fire and harm or kill themselves or another.  Just because you didn’t mean to pull the trigger doesn’t mean you can’t accidentally pull the trigger if your finger is there to do it.  You think you’re careful?  No one is careful enough.  Keep your finger outside the trigger guard.  Most people prefer to let their finger ride outside the trigger guard being held straight out so that the finger extends beyond the length of the trigger guard.  This means even if you should bump your hand your finger won’t be in a position to pull even the lightest of triggers.  It’s a simple habit to develop that can save lives, and garner the respect of your fellow marksman.

Bad trigger discipline will shoot you in the face.

Good trigger discipline saves lives.

Rule 3:  Always treat the gun as if it is loaded.  In many ways this rule is an extension of the previous 2.  In fact it’s why the previous 2 are so important.  No matter how sure you are that a gun is unloaded, ALWAYS assume the gun is loaded.  Even if the last time you had the gun you knew it was unloaded, assume it is loaded.  Even if you just dropped the magazine and cleared the chamber, act as if it’s loaded.  Unless the gun is in pieces spread across a table, or you can very clearly see that the magazine is out (or the cylinder open) and the action is open and you can see daylight from the chamber, assume the gun is loaded.

"But I’m sure the gun is unloaded.  I unloaded it last night and put it in the safe."  Nope sorry.  Let me tell you the story of the bullet fairy.  You see the bullet fairy loves to sneak a round into the chamber of a gun you just KNEW was unloaded.

Rule 4:  Secure the gun when it’s not in use.  This is the last rule of gun safety.  While the previous 3 existed to keep the gun’s operator from firing accidentally, the fourth is to prevent unintended people from firing your guns.  This means a few things.  First of all if you’re carrying a handgun you need a holster.  You wouldn’t shove a sharp knife into your pants or your pocket without a sheath would you?  Then why would you stick a gun in there?  A holster helps secure your gun keeping it from being dropped, and covers the trigger to prevent something from pulling it.  Even if you pocket carry a particularly small gun, a pocket holster is necessary to both keep the gun in position, and to cover the trigger.

At home, when your gun isn’t in use, that means you need to lock it in a safe.  Now if you should have say a shotgun for home defense, that shotgun probably spends a lot of time at the ready when you’re home, and it’s certainly alright to have your gun ready to go in that situation.  When you’re not home however your gun needs to be secured under lock and key.  Many guns these days come with trigger or cable locks to either cover the trigger or lock the action open to prevent them from being used by children, but if you want to guard against theft as well, a gun safe is a wise investment that will help keep your guns out of the wrong hands.  Speaking as someone who’s had a break in while I was away before, I strongly recommend at least some sort of gun safe that you can bolt to the floor or wall, and can be locked.  There are a variety of options out there, but a simple metal locking gun case can be had for as little as $100.  Though they’re not perfect, they’ll do the job of keeping your guns out of the hands of children, and at least making it more difficult for them to be stolen.  This can do a lot to prevent arming criminals, and prevent accidents alike.

So now that we’ve covered the basic rules, you hopefully have a better idea of how to be a safe and responsible new gun owner.  Let’s review.  Don’t point that thing at me, booger hook off the bang switch, beware the bullet fairy, and lock that thing up.

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Reblogged from peashooter85  513 notes

peashooter85:

A marriet style 18 shot percussion pepperbox revolver crafted by Auguste Francotte of Liege, Belgium.  Early to mid 19th century.

I do so love all the weird guns you post, and this puppy is certainly weird.

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Reblogged from weaponslover  150,985 notes
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Guns for Beginners: First Gun: Handguns

When choosing a first gun, there are a variety of reasons to own a gun.  But chances are if you’re considering a handgun first, then chances are you have one pressing concern above all others.  Self Defense.  Due to the length of this article, if you’d like to skip all the analysis, please just skip to the section titled SUGGESTIONS.

Let’s be clear on one thing.  Handguns are almost always less powerful than long guns.  They are a compromise.  They give up accuracy, range, and power for one all important factor, portability.  A handgun is by its very design intended to be carried with you so that in your time of need, you’ll have access to it, where  along gun wouldn’t be practical to carry.  That’s not to say that there aren’t handguns used for hunting, and handguns popular for target shooting, but at their core, handguns are built to be used for protection.  While handgun target shooting can be a fun challenge, I’d strongly suggest, that if protection isn’t your first concern, to start building your firearm skills on a long gun.

The second thing to understand about handguns is that there is an inverse relationship between gun size and felt recoil.  Simply put, while a layman may think that a smaller gun has a smaller recoil, it’s actually the opposite.  The heavier the gun is, the more weight it has to absorb recoil.  So in the same caliber, the heavier gun is going to have a lighter recoil.  The issue this brings up is that a heavier gun is easier to control, but a bigger and heavier gun is also going to be more difficult to carry.  Now if your plan is to keep the gun in your home or (where state laws allow) in your car, this isn’t so much of an issue.  If it’s on your person you’ll have to look at your options and decide exactly where to compromise between function and portability.

Actions:

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s look at your options for a handgun.  Though there are a variety of calibers and styles of frame, but in terms of mechanisms they can all be boiled down into one of three categories, Semi-Automatic pistols, Revolvers, and Derringers.

Semi-autos use the recoil of the previous round fired to pull back a moving slide and pull another round off the top of a usually removable magazine and load it into the chamber.  The advantages of semi-auto firearms is that  for one the vertically feeding magazine can often offer more rounds available for fire than a revolver, and by removing the magazine and replacing it with another you can reload much more quickly. 

The key disadvantage of semi-auto handguns is that they typically have a more complex operation to them than other types, which can be difficult to learn for first time shooters, and more difficult to remember under stress.  Reliability can also be a concern for some models.  Semi-autos also often require a break in period during which it is necessary to fire a large number of rounds through them before they can cycle reliably.  Though this break in period is a good time for a new shooter to spend learning to shoot, and how to clear malfunctions.

Revolvers are an older mechanism which holds a number of rounds (often five or six but sometimes more) in chambers that are part of a larger revolving cylinder.  When the gun is cocked the cylinder rotates to line up with the barrel and pulling the trigger will fire the round.  In older models these were two separate actions requiring the gun to be cocked again with each shot, but since the beginning of the 20th century most revolvers are double action, meaning they rotate the cylinder, cock the hammer, and fire all by simply pulling the trigger.

The advantages of revolvers are reliability, simplicity of operation, and depending upon the caliber, greater power.  Since revolvers have a more rigid and sturdy design, they can be chambered for more powerful magnum rounds that semi-autos often can’t.  Since the rounds are already loaded into the chamber, all that’s needed to fire is the pull of a trigger and no other steps are necessary.  Since the long and heavy double action trigger pull serves as a safety making it very difficult to unintentionally fire the weapon, no external safety is needed.  Ultimately since revolvers are a one step process to fire, they’re a very good choice as a first gun to a new shooter. 

The key disadvantages of revolvers are larger size, slower reloads, and limited capacity.  The cylinder will add a degree of roundness, meaning no matter how far the technology comes, revolvers will never be as flat as semi-autos can be.

Lastly there are derringers.  Derringers sacrifice even more in the name of portability, by being single or double shot handguns which are little more than a barrel, a hammer, and a simple trigger.  They are very small, but that means they’re going to have intense recoil, while at the same time lacking in power.  Derringers are a last ditch option for those who can’t conceal a firearm any other way, or for a backup gun to be available in case the primary gun is somehow rendered non-functional.  They’re a terrible choice for a new shooter, and shouldn’t even be considered.

Calibers:

The great caliber debate rages on, and my intention here isn’t to declare one better than the other, but rather to analyze them as options for new shooters.

When it comes to handguns you can break your calibers down into a few categories.  Rimfire, Small caliber, and then there are the more traditional .38 through .45 calibers.

Rimfire handguns fire the same .22 ammunition that rifles do.  They come in all of the major action types and have very mild recoil, making them an excellent choice for learning the basics of marksmanship, but are lacking in power.  However some gun is better than no gun, and there have been plenty of instances of successful self defense using a .22 caliber gun. If you have trouble with keeping your gun on target due to recoil, a .22 might be right for you.

Small caliber handguns, also known as “mouse guns” are typically more powerful than rimfire, but less powerful than the common defensive calibers.  They range from .25 through .380.  Traditionally this range of calibers was popular for defense due to milder recoil, and their often smaller and lower pressure cartridges favoring more compact gun designs that make them easier to carry.  Modern advances in metallurgy, have allowed more powerful rounds to be chambered in guns just as small, which as pushed smaller calibers out of this niche, but there are still plenty of light and compact small caliber handguns on the market, that also offer manageable recoil.

The .380 auto would likely be the most popular option in this range, offering the most power due to its larger bullet, while still functioning in some very compact guns.  The .380 offers a bullet diameter similar to its more powerful cousin the 9mm auto, but with a shorter cartridge and lower pressure rating, it typically fires a bullet that’s lighter for its diameter, and at a lower velocity.  This gives it less recoil than a 9mm would in the same size gun, but the round has problems with failing to penetrate adequately.  Still the .380 has proven incredibly popular, and has been used successfully in plenty of defensive situations.  It will still prove to have snappier recoil than lighter calibers in the small caliber range, especially in the extremely tiny sub-compact guns it’s recently become popular in.  If you’re considering making a .380 your first gun, consider a larger and heavier gun, in a steel frame, in this caliber before looking at the extremely compact polymer models. 

Then there are the major defensive calibers that include everything from .38 special up through .45 ACP.  In spite of their being hotly debated, all of these calibers offer good defensive capabilities.  Which you choose is going to be primarily a matter of personal preference, as different people will experience recoil in different ways.  I’ll break these down one step further for analysis.

Defensive revolver cartridges include the .38 special, 357 Magnum, .44 special, and .45 long colt.

The .38 special is over a century old, and runs at a fairly low pressure giving it a mild recoil, while still being able to move a fairly heavy bullet compared to its semi auto cousins in 9mm and .380.  Its been used by police, and been getting the job done for quite a long time, and in some countries is still the go to option for police departments.  Thanks to +p loadings that can be chambered in modern revolvers it still keeps pace as a viable option, and is in fact currently America’s most popular caliber for defensive handguns.  The lower pressure round offers a much milder recoil than other major defensive calibers, which also makes this a good place to consider starting from.

The .357 magnum is considered by many to be the king of defensive rounds due to its higher power firing an extremely fast moving projectile for a handgun.  This round came about in the 1930’s as an improvement upon the .38 special round.  It sports a longer case with more powder capacity, and a drastically higher pressure rating.  The .357 magnum travels at much higher speeds than its lower power ancestor the .38 special, and is able to penetrate more deeply and deliver more kinetic energy on impact.  One of its biggest advantages is that any handgun chambered for .357 magnum, can also chamber and fire .38 special rounds.  This gives you the option of starting off with .38s and building your way up to magnum rounds as your marksmanship improves.

.44 special was once a largely forgotten cartridge of the old west.  You may have heard of its more powerful modern descendant the .44 magnum.  I won’t be suggesting the .44 magnum here due to its high recoil, and the impractical size of the guns chambered for it, the .44 special is still a valid defensive caliber today.  Recently with the resurgence of “Bulldog” revolvers, .44 has made a big comeback.  Bulldog revolvers are simply revolvers with a short barrel, that are chambered for a large caliber such as the .44 special.  Due to the .44 special’s softer recoil and lower pressure, it can be chambered in guns much smaller than the more potent .44 magnum, and that makes it more practical to carry.  The big, slower moving projectile is very similar ballistically to the more popular .45 acp

Lastly among revolvers there is the .45 long colt, also simply referred to as “.45 colt.”  This was the most popular round of the old west, but as semi-auto rounds caught on with the military, and the .38 became the most popular defensive caliber for civilian handguns through most of the 20th century, the .45 long colt was often thought of as nothing but an old cowboy caliber, popular only for old west enthusiasts.  More recently that has changed, with a few modern handguns having been chambered for this round.  This has lead to the advent of a number of self-defense oriented bullet designs being made for the .45 long colt as well.  This round is just slightly wider than the .44 special, and ballistically behaves similarly to the .45 acp.

Semi-auto defensive calibers have become much more popular for civilian use starting in the 1980’s, but had been in use by the military since the 1910’s.  They include 9mm auto, .40 S&W, and .45 acp, among other more obscure rounds.  All of them can be effective defensive calibers.

The 9mm also known as 9mm NATO, 9mm Luger, 9mm Auto, and 9x19mm is likely the world’s most prolific round.  Its origins go back to the early 20th century as one of the very first smokeless powder rounds.  Compared to the other major defensive rounds it has the smallest cartridge in both length and diameter, making it easy to carry more, easier to make magazines that carry them in higher capacity, and making the ammunition overall lighter.  It fires rounds that are typically lighter, but faster moving than those fired by the .38 special.  Additionally the ammunition is very common, and the least expensive of all the major defensive calibers.  The major detraction from 9mm is typically concerning the smaller size of the bullet (though it should be noted that the bullet is roughly the same diameter as those fired by the .38 special) as compared to larger calibers.  Another thing to consider is recoil.  It’s a higher pressure round.  While it doesn’t recoil hard, it does recoil very suddenly resulting in what some describe as a “snappy” recoil.  Everyone experiences recoil differently, so you may or may not like the feel of the 9mm.

The .40 S&W compared to other rounds on this list is a relative newcomer.  It fires a bullet that is larger than a 9mm, but smaller than a .45, attempting to split the difference between the two and find a happy average.  However like the 9mm it’s a higher pressure round, and similarly has a very snappy recoil.  Given it’s also a bigger round it’s also going to have a harder recoil than a 9mm.  Most of the detractors of the .40S&W round refer to the recoil as its primary drawback, often complaining that it actually recoils harder than the .45 acp, but again that is a subjective matter.  The .40S&W undeniably does more damage than a 9mm, as it fires a wider and heavier round at roughly the same speed,  It has become a very popular round for police use, but I’d say it is an ill advised round for a new shooter to start with.

The .45 acp is a big, slow moving projectile, and in fact throws the widest and heaviest projectile of all the major defensive semi-auto rounds.  You would think this would lead to harsher recoil, but the .45acp is a lower pressure round.  Many of its proponents describe its recoil as more of a push or shove, than a snap, making it easier to control.  It isn’t a mild recoil like that of a .38, but its certainly manageable.  The due the slow and heavy nature of the round, it tends to travel in more of an arch than a straight line over longer distances.  This may present a challenge to new shooters, but at common defensive ranges won’t matter as much.  Still handling a .45’s recoil is a matter of preference.  Some will be able to handle it better than others, and it’s also going to vary depending on the size and weight of the gun it’s being fired from.

There are also a large variety of higher powered magnum handgun rounds that I didn’t cover here, mostly because they aren’t wise options for new shooters, and typically are only designed for hunting or large dangerous animal defense, not more common self defense.

Polymer vs. Metal

The final thing to consider with a new handgun is do you want a lighter polymer framed handgun, or a heavier metal framed gun?  Heavier guns are more difficult to carry due to their weight, but as mentioned before, that weight also makes the gun easier to shoot by helping to absorb recoil.  However if you’re going with one of the lighter recoiling calibers, that may not be as much of an issue.  Once again, I encourage you to try a variety of handguns, before committing to buy one.

SUGGESTIONS:

My most recommended gun to start with?  A 6 shot .357 magnum/.38 special revolver with a barrel of 3 or 4 inches, and start of shooting .38 special in it.  The larger sized gun will help to mitigate recoil, and has all the features you need to build the basics of marksmanship.  Its simple operation will allow you to quickly make use of it under stress, and the option to go up to .357 magnum once you’ve become more experienced means that the gun can grow with you.  Although going for a full sized revolver like this rather than a compact model like a snub nose will make carrying the gun more difficult, it shouldn’t be so large it’s prohibitive to carry, and will offer you far more accuracy, and less recoil, which is vital for building shooting fundamentals as a new shooter.  Snub noses are great for carry once you’re an experienced shooter, but they’re unpleasant to shoot for those new to handguns.

CONCLUSION:

In the end, if a handgun is your first gun, you want one that’s not going to be so hard to shoot that you’re discouraged from shooting more.  As I’ve said before, managing recoil is a matter of technique, not strength, and you’re not going to build that technique by starting with too much recoil.  As such I’d suggest starting with a metal framed gun in a low recoiling round such as .380, .38 special, 9mm, or a small or rimfire caliber.  Try a lot of guns, go to a range, rent guns in a variety of frame types, styles, and calibers.  Take a defensive handgun class, and learn the basics of handgun marksmanship.

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Reblogged from elpatron56  16 notes

elpatron56:

symbiotictoxin:

America can’t have stricter gun control laws, are you crazy?

How else will people get the guns meant for armed military combat that they’ll never be in?

Come one now.

>meant for military combat

The guns you can buy at the gun store look like this:

image

Guns issued to military personnel look like this:

image

In case you missed it, check out that little hole above where it says “semi” while the top one just says “fire”.

If your hands touched the bottom one you’d have to pay a $10,000 fine and spend 10 years in prison.

Why? Because the bottom is supposed to work like a military weapon, the top one is a design that doesn’t work like a military weapon.

Looks similar, functions entirely differently.  But most people making the “meant for military” argument are trying to make an emotional argument, not a logical one.

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Most Epic Nerf War in History!

One two three four. I declare a Nerf war!

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Fundamentals Of Small Arms Weapons (1945) - Part 1

And now you know, Jimmy, how your small arms work in the never ending war against communism.

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