Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Someone is/was wrong on the internet!

SO, in a compilation of advice given on various gun boards, at gun stores, ranges and stuff I hear at class, I decided to collect my favorites and put them together in a post. This started with my prior rantings about teaching women to shoot and what's the right first gun for a woman.

So, let's wade in shall we?

There is no better home defense gun than the shotgun. You don't have to aim, just point and they don't jam and just racking the slide will cause the bad actor to poop or pass out or leave or something.

Where to start? It is obvious this person has never really shot a shotgun in a stressful environment or confronted a motivated attacker with one or even patterned one for real or tried to make plausible defensive shots with one in training. They most certainly do jam if not operated properly. The point, not aim thing is just stupid and I won't even bother with the ancient racking the pump garbage.
Yes, the shotgun is a decent choice for the ensconced defender. Take a protected position behind cover and be ready to shoot anything that invades your safe space. Gotta make sure the bad actor knows that is what is going to happen and you have to have everyone you care about behind you by that point. Ever tried moving through a house with one to get to another room to get to a child or other person? Not so easy, especially if you have to open a door or move anything out of the way to get there or use a flashlight to see along the way.

The classic, get a revolver because they don't jam and you just point and click. Especially if you can't work the slide on a semi auto.

I already covered this one but the high point is, if someone doesn't have the strength to operate the slide on a semiauto once, what makes you think they have the strength to do repeated 12 pound curls with one finger smoothly enough to operate a DA revolver?
A corollary to this is, if the person cannot (supposedly) operate the slide on a semiauto due to grip strength, what makes you think they can hang onto a snub revolver or even better an Airweight snub?
Technique is more important than brute strength in working the action of a semiauto.

One of my favorites along this line;
The new Ruger LCR 38 revolver. The most user friendly and finest carry firearm ever made for a novice woman shooter............period.

WOW, the stoopid, it burns. As has been discussed here and elsewhere, to make a blanket statement about all women like that and to base it on this particular choice of platform is just beyond me.

A gunstore favorite is, you need this here little gun to fit your tiny hands line.

Well, there are a few very high quality tiny handguns. The smaller the gun is, the more felt recoil is going to be transferred to the shooter. The smaller it is, the shorter the sight radius is so the harder to aim. Likewise, most of the smaller guns also sacrifice sight quality along with sight radius. Smaller guns usually mean smaller calibers. Smaller calibers mean less power / penetration / damage. I know you can get subcompact Glock in .40 but, REALLY?, you want to refute more recoil, less sights and do that with a .40S&W sub compact? REALLY?
Besides, if this is a persons first gun, learning to shoot well on a subcompact is just the flat out wrong way to go about it. Especially if it is chambered in a major caliber. Learning to deal with blink and flinch is hard enough, no need to exacerbate the issue like this.

Being old and crotchety I can relate to this one. If it doesn't start with a .4, it's crap or at least the .45 is God's caliber and shooting anything less is a waste.

Well, these folks have been listening to too many DI's from WWII. Get some real and updated information such as facts. Check out the IWBA, International Wound Ballistics Association, a group of forensics and pathologists that specifically look at real shooting by real people against real people with real guns on real streets and the real results of those real events. Not goat tests or gelatin or some other "stopping power" measurement. Or mythical one shot stop capabilities. Get real information about premium hollow points in pretty much any caliber over 9mm and what the IWBA and even the FBI Defensive Systems Unit Ballistic Research Facility FBI Academy. Shot placement is key to stopping a fight. A determined attacker can continue to fight for a long time with wounds that cause pain but do not interrupt the attackers ability to fight. Even if those wounds are eventually mortal wounds.

Shoot them with a .22 because if you shoot them a bunch of times fast with a .22 they'll stop the attack.

The corollary to this is the old; I carry Uber Mega ManStopper Frangible rounds designed to deliver shocking fight stopping terminal power to the bad guy that will instantly make him stop and or die.

Well, let's look at those, Not saying I'd want to be shot with a .22 but nothing aggravates an attacker like being shot with a .22 or .25. Saying I'd like to rip off for this is, "You shoot me with a .25 and I find out about it, I'm gonna be pissed." While the .22 has a statistical reputation as being the deadliest caliber, that has more to do with the commonality of small guns that can be hidden deeply and made cheaply than with any amount of actual performance of the round. However, dead is dead.

As for the super duper rounds, FIRST, I have first hand knowledge of a righteous CHL shoot in Houston where the CHL emptied his .38 snub loaded with super special but factory ammo made by someone nationally known and marketed into the bad guy through the open drivers window of his van all center mass hits. The bad guy turned, ran off and walked into court for his arraignment a couple days later when he was caught. Needless to say, the CHL now carries name brand normal JHP's instead of this super ammo.

So, what is your favorite "gun advice"?


  1. Corollary to the .22;
    Shoot them with a .22 because it will get inside and bounce around off their ribs/skull instead of going out the other side.

    Uhm, if it will bounce off the ribs after entry, it will likely bounce off before it goes in, eh?

  2. Having been a *gun hand* all my life, and what a retired S.F. LtCol calls *a trained gun fighter* (I love that one), I just don't give a hell of a lot of *advice*, I opine, but there's no perfect gun... They ALL require work, skill and practice, LOTS of practice..

    I DO carry a .40 Sub Compact, a Springfield XD model, loaded with 180gr HydraShoks, and yeah, it's a handful, for a wuss... My 105 pound daughter shoots it like a champ...

    But, at night, when things go *bump* in the dark, it's still my XD-45 Tactical that's in my hand, 230gr +P Ranger Talons or Remington Golden Sabers...

    If it doesn't start with a *4*?? That's MY philosophy... And if you can actually shoot, and have done more than *punch paper*, the .45 is the ticket in MY opinion, shooting something twice is just silly...

  3. There is no "one size fits all" "right" answer. The right gun is the one you have available to you when you need it. Preferably one you are comfortable with and have practiced with. When my mother requested to be set up with a gun for home defense, we headed off to the gun show to find her a weapon SHE was comfortable with. I had her pick up just about everything from pocket pistols to hunting rifles. She made the decision to buy a Ruger 10/22 which we then set up with a 50 round magazine and a red dot sight. She has it stashed in her "safe room" right next to the cordless phone. Would I have preferred her to pick something more versatile such as a .38 revolver or a 9mm semi-auto? Probably. However, she was not comfortable with the majority of the ones she handled. Lack of comfort = bad choice. I do know one thing though, even if she doesn't stop the bad guy or kill him outright, it won't be too much trouble locating the suspect. He'll be the one with 50 small holes in his chest and groin at the ER cussing up a storm.

  4. K.E.,
    Big trend in home defense weapons we've seen lately is pistol caliber carbines with dot sights. Easy to handle and operate and even for those with less than perfect sight can be operated efficiently.

    I'm gonna bet you didn't start your daughter on the .40 though! Seriously, if the .45 if workable for you that is great. I was one until a few years ago. Actually a 1911 man all the way. Switched to the XD in 9mm. Don't feel undergunned with it. The Mrs still carries her alloy framed Officers Model and is happy with it.

  5. The 4 rules of firearms' safety are my favorite farce when it comes to guns.

  6. Glenn,
    My only two rules are;
    Keep your finger off the trigger unless you are actually firing the gun.
    Keep the gun pointed in the safest direction at all time.

    These two are pretty absolute. Safest direction could be into the berm, at the bad guy or at the bookshelf.

    As for the finger, if you are not actually pulling the trigger to discharge the firearm, why would you need to touch the trigger?

  7. You're right, my daughter started out with a Model 586 S&W .357 with full charge ammo...