So when you ask the average person what is their choice for a home defense firearm, I would bet that the pump shotgun tops the list. Many of these respondents typically will justify their answer with, “just hearing the rack of that shotgun will discourage any bad guy”. I’m not here to debate that the shotgun doesn’t have an authoritative sound, but seriously if all you wanted was a sound then get a recording of that sound. For those of you that have chosen the venerable shotgun or maybe a long gun consider the handgun as a go to for home defense. After all, what do we carry when we are out in the public? I know literally hundreds of people that carry concealed (a few carry openly) and that firearm is a handgun.
So let’s suppose this scenario; an unfamiliar noise happens at 2;00 a.m. You want to go investigate it so you grab your long gun (rifle or shotgun) and make your way to the disturbance. Hopefully you have a flashlight (you need to be able to identify your threat/target) and possibly a cell phone (have you ever tried to make a phone call with a shotgun in one hand?). If you’re like me, I don’t tend to sleep in cargo pants so pockets are going to be very limited on our sleepwear. This can be further impacted if you need to open a door while carrying a shotgun. I will continue with this complication by asking you to think about pieing a corner (tactically turning a corner while keeping your body exposure to a minimum) with a long gun. You really don’t want a bad guy grabbing your gun as you turn the corner. Now consider this same scenario with a handgun that has a light mounted on it. Much easier to maneuver through a confined hallway, open doors, keep control of the firearm and to make a phone call if I need to.
Lastly, I own a shotgun that has a 5 round tube magazine plus one in the chamber for a total of six rounds. In my Glock 22 I have an extended magazine with a total of 32 rounds of ammunition. This nears the firepower of a sub-machine (just not full auto) gun.
I’m not saying that shotguns or rifles are a poor choice, rather think of the amount of additional training you need to do to clear your home or business with a long gun.
NEXT: KNOW WHERE YOUR PROJECTILE WILL GO WHEN YOU FIRE A GUN – you can inadvertently injure the very people you are trying to protect by using ammo that travels through (considerations are body mass / sheetrock / caliber).
- Ball ammo vs expanding or frangible
- Shotgun pellets vs birdshot
IMPORTANT: Practice & train – you will not “rise to the occasion”…you will “fall back on your level of training”.
The main purpose for this blog is to hopefully impart a lesson learned if you are thinking about purchasing a gun safe. The inspiration came to me when a friend was helping me install a new gun safe. I was asked why I needed a second safe. I was a bit evasive in my response, as I didn’t want to admit I had not carefully thought out my initial purchase years earlier, and I needed more space.
I bought my first safe based on the number of long guns I owned and the fact that I wanted to protect my firearms from theft, unauthorized handling and fire. Seemed like a logical approach and I assumed I had all the bases covered. Well it didn’t take long to realize that I had other possessions to secure, such as important documents, jewelry and ammunition. The safe was full and was quite obvious that I failed to take into consideration that some of my long guns had scopes, optics, slings and lights and this subtracted from the overall interior size. For example, a 22 gun safe can reasonably accomodate 12 rifles and their attached equipment. This left little room for any other valuables.
Other items to research are the size of the safe and the space that it will live in. Safes look nice in the store display, but you need to fit them into your house. The fire rating of the safe is important as well. Where fire services are within a quick response time (4 to 6 minutes) versus living in a rural environment where a response from the fire department could be more than 20 to 30 minutes. Locking mechanism, traditional tumbler to the electronic system. While the electronic approach is faster to access the mechancal locks do not have batteries to fail.
One last thing to contemplate is how many guns you plan to have. Safe manufacturers make a variety of sizes from the single firearm mini safe to the giant sized multi-gun models. Owning a safe for your guns can provide a sense of security and can greatly reduce your liability in preventing unauthorized access.
Whether it’s the Zombie Apocalypse, Mayan Calendar Predictions, or Financial Collapse you will want to be prepared with a properly appointed armory. GunsAndAmmo.comhas compiled this list of 8 Must-Haves for the Survivalist and Doomsday Prepper. And AZFirearms.com just happens to have many similar items in stock!
Whether you are a serious Survivalist or a casual Prepper, be sure to check out the National Geographic Documentary Site also. You can learn your Prepper Score (how long you’d survive at your current preparedness level), Repurposing Bunkers (how to make a sturdy safehouse), create a tasty Gourmet Doomsday Menu, and even how to Purify Drinking Water (no mention of the Waterworld method). Because you never know…”