New Years is a time for resolutions, and doing new things, and one of those things should be taking a more active approach in your personal defense, and defense of your family. Here are some things to consider, and it might even have some tidbits for those who have “been shooting since Christ was a corporal”.
Pick a gun that is good for you. Most people have a preference of caliber, make, model, but do what is right for you, in what fits your hand, budget and need. Unfortunately, there are a lot of know it all’s that insist that only their favorite caliber of their gun is best…usually this is just to get affirmation that they made a good choice, and validate their own egos. Find a range that allows rentals, a buddy with a small arsenal and try them all out.
When you get a gun, think about how you will carry it. Usually, our first inclination on buying a gun is to get ammo, lights, upgraded sights, but we run out of steam when it comes to a good holster. As I stated in my 1911 blog article, this can lead to catastrophic instances so get a good quality holster that will keep your firearm secure and last for a long time.
Think about backup magazines. While we would all like to assume we will never miss, statistics on shootings, as well as FBI statistics would indicate otherwise. I used to carry a 1911 and I had 8 shots, plus one in the pipe. Compared to your average Glock 19, the most carried handgun which offers 15 round magazines standard, or the FN 5.7 which has 20. From experience with timers, I am almost 4x faster on the reloading when using a magazine pouch, like the ones offered on JM4 Tactical, versus carrying loose magazines in my pockets. It also standardizes where your spare magazines are located, versus where they are in each different pair of pants you have.
Guns are tools, and like all tools they need to be maintained to be in top performance. Whatever firearm you choose you need to know the basic functions, and how to clean and lubricate it. Cleaning the grime, ensuring that the magazines are cleaned ensures that you have a tool that you can defend yourself with and know that it will function. Having lived in the desert with minimal humidity to mid-west/south with 70+% rust can set in quickly as well. A pretty good cleaning kit can be found on our website as well.
Finally, I would look at extra training, but from a reputable instructor. There are a ton of YouTube personalities, former military “experts” (many of whom were cooks, admin but are now firearms experts) and mall cops who put on these training sessions, so be wary. I would encourage looking at some decent ones for beginners, intermediate or if you have been doing it awhile something advanced like Gunsite or Thunder Ranch. I am still learning and plan to take even more training because I can always learn something.
Author: Ian Bolser