There are two types of preppers in the world, those that are gun owners and those that are not. Granted most of us own guns, but from comments posted on the blog and emails I’ve receive some don’t, so obviously, all of us preppers aren’t into guns – yet.
Most of the comments and emails have asked about choosing the right gun, they want to know what to look for and how to avoid getting ripped off. The best way to avoid getting ripped off is to buy smart. Here’s how.
Do your research
A few days spent doing research will help you avoid making mistakes. Know what guns to avoid and shotgun, handgun, rifle action types before you shopping. Learn about the different calibers and types of cartridges that are available.
Get a copy of “The Shooter’s Bible“, “Boston’s Gun Bible” and Guns 101. Avoid most of the “this is the best survival gun” type stuff posted on forums and the web, most of the information is dated, wrong and of little use.
Know what you want before you go shopping
Never walk into a gun shop without an idea of what you want, if you don’t have any idea as to what you want, you need to do more research untill you do. Some sales people can be pushy and you don’t want to be crusaded into buying something you don’t want or need because some over zealous sales clerk needed a commission from your purchase.
What do you want it for
Before you can be sure of what you want, you have to know what you want it for. If your intention is concealed carry then your needs would be different than if you wanted a firearm for hunting or foraging. For example one of the best and most devastating close range weapons is the 12 gauge shotgun when properly loaded, but you would be at a distinct disadvantage if hunting on flat open terrain or needed concealment.
You can’t do it all
There is no one do everything firearm, so stop looking. If you want to cover all the bases, you’ll need a minimum of three different guns. A handgun, shotgun and center fire rifle, and even with that three gun battery there are some gaping holes about what you can do. Of course if you know you could not shoot someone in self-defense then guns for foraging may be all you will need.
Price doesn’t always mean quality
With firearms price doesn’t always mean quality. Granted, some of the best firearms available are costly, but that doesn’t mean that they are the only quality choices available. For example, I would feel just as protected and well armed with a Smith and Wesson model 10 or Makarov as I would if armed with a custom 1911 or HK45. The key is diligent research before you buy (and skill with what you have).
Fit, feel, recoil and other considerations
Whatever firearm you buy, it should fit your body and grip. A gun that fits your body will be easier for you to use and more accurate than if you have to force your body to conform to the size and shape of the weapon. The gun should be an extension of your body and it should feel natural when held in a shooting position.
This can not be determined by anyone but you – you have to hold the weapon, point it and aim it to determine how well it fits your body. Guns and Ammo posted a great article that can be read here titled “The Right Fit” that everyone should read. The article is about handguns but many of the principles can be applied to long guns as well.
Take a class
Get training. Most areas offer hunter safety courses that are free to anyone wanting to take part. If you live in a state that issues handgun carry permits, sign up to take the required classes, most are great for learning basic care and safety rules. The NRA offers a number of low-cost training opportunities that you should look into.
Have advice that would help others avoid getting ripped off when buying their first firearm or questions feel free to speak-up in the comments below…
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