Posts Tagged ‘Self Defense Firearm’

By Ruth Goodman

umpire safe

I am declaring it official. The gun-buying panic is over. The mad rush to arms following the Sandy Hook tragedy (and the politicians’ attempts to exploit it) has finally come to an end. In case you were out of the country or otherwise occupied during the last two years, let me bring you up to speed. The gun industry was already experiencing high activity thanks to the reelection of our current president when tragedy struck in Newtown, Connecticut. Immediately following the reports of a school shooting AR’s began flying off the shelves.

While this picture is not of our store (we did not think to take pictures of our empty racks and shelves), it is remarkably similar to what happened to us.

While this picture is not of our store (we did not think to take pictures of our empty racks and shelves), it is remarkably similar to what happened to us.

Most of our inventory of Modern Sporting Rifles was gone within a week, all of it was gone within a few weeks. (On our busiest day, we went from a regular staff of 5 to 9 and still had customers lined up to the door.) Once all the AR’s were gone, attention turned to handguns. Self-defense purposed handguns became impossible to keep in stock. The rapid rise in handgun purchasing led to ammo shortages in nearly all the popular calibers. For most calibers, the supply quickly caught up with demand and the shortage ceased to be a problem many months, if not a year, ago. The notable exception to that is .22 ammo. In our store, the .22 ammo shortage began around the same time the rest of the calibers were catching up with demand and has continued on from that time. The most bizarre thing to many of us in the industry, is how long it has taken .22 ammo to catch up. A full year later and we still have a very limited supply of .22 and impose strict limits on how many boxes a customer can purchase. 

However, as we entered Spring we noted a marked slow-down in our store. As we talk with others from around the country, we are hearing of the return of the normal “summer slow season.” Gun stores and industry reps for national companies are reporting an industry-wide slow-down of purchases and firearms activity (with the exception of states that recently enacted increasingly infringing gun laws). I believe this slow season feels much slower to many, because it stands in stark contrast to the record making sales of the last two years. We have been so busy for so long, that record busy became the new normal. Stores increased staffing and ordered more product, producers ramped up production, etc… 

out of breath

Now that pre-chaos norms have reinstated themselves, this is the perfect opportunity for us all to rest and catch our breath. It’s a chance to look up from the daily activities and see the bigger picture. How many of the recent gun-buyers were first time buyers that now need training, supplies, and support? How can we as an industry meet those needs? Women are steadily increasing their presence in the firearms world. What can we do to encourage and support that growth? Have the local demographics changed in the last two years? Should a store focus more on building their online presence or on their brick-and-mortar functionality? There are countless questions we, as an industry, can ask ourselves at this time. Now is the chance for each of us to really sit down and evaluate ourselves as a store, an industry member, a service provider, and a member of the community. 

Let us all make the most of this time and catch our breath. 

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Here lately, I have found myself repeatedly asked for recommendations on a “good purse gun.” If, after much encouragement she still won’t consider on-body carry, I whole-heartedly urge her to go with a revolver. Why? Because at some point in the not too distant past I read an article about semiautomatics jamming when shot through a purse. The article I read, which I could not rediscover tonight, indicated the fabrics of the purse entered into the slide and caused the firearm to not only jam but get stuck in the purse. Effectively this converted a 15 round 9mm to a 1 or 2 shot brick in your purse.

ruger-lcp-stove-pipe-jam

As I went back and researched this topic further, I realized the previous issue must be a worst case scenario and the most frequent malfunction with semiautomatics was actually the stove-pipe (a round not fully ejected) caused by the confined space in the purse. On a good day, a stove-pipe can be cleared very easily. On a bad day, with training, a stove-pipe can still be cleared, but it will use precious time. Of course, both problems are resolved if you simply pull the gun out of the purse before firing. However, that counts on you having ample warning and time enough to draw your gun. Time is a luxury we are not always afforded.

While not much has been written about this topic, to me, this factor is critical in deciding which gun to purchase. I would love to see more tests done. As shown in the videos below, if the purse is large enough, the semi-automatic may not jam at all. However, I would need to see some very definitive data before I would ever feel comfortable recommending a semiautomatic as a purse gun.

Desantis-Purse

How about you? Have you ever shot a gun through a purse or some other similar material? What happened?

*Disclaimer: I am not recommending or advocating for any of the products displayed in the pictures. My use of pictures is simply to illustrate a point.

Resources:

Here are the only videos I could find of people actually shooting through purses.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Concealed-Chic/585789701443556

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AAkbVRGrc5M

And the only article I could find about it:

http://www.aware.org/resources/legal-articles/8-content/197-purse-carry-do-you-what-how-by-lyn-bates

Other resources worth your read/watch:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J8ramg2QaQE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DeTRTpkMH0M

http://www.thehighroad.org/archive/index.php/t-721266.html

http://www.thewellarmedwoman.com/women-and-guns/concealed-carry/the-concealed-carry-purse

http://www.corneredcat.com/?s=purse

gun-shop

I came across an intriguing question the other day. Why do people buy guns? It got me thinking; what is the motivation for people to buy guns today? Is it just for fun? Is it for defense? Just to have for “just in case”? Why was there such a surge in gun buying over the last few years?

From what I see on a daily basis, I’ve deduced there are typically 4 main reasons a person will purchase a firearm:

1. Self Defense1348599034949gun

2. Sport (hunting, competitive shooting, etc…) th

3. Investment (collecting)guncollection3

4. The Love of Firearms

What is a Self-Defense Gun?

th

A competition gun

Of the four reasons, numbers 1 and 4 are the most common in our store. While recreational firearm use, collecting and simply enjoying firearms are certainly valuable components of the firearms industry overall, I find the majority of our customers are looking for self-defense firearms. What is a self-defense gun? I define a self-defense gun as a firearm specifically designed to aid the user in utilizing it effectively, efficiently, simply and quickly in an immediate threat situation. Self-defense firearms do not need a lot of the bells and whistles that most competitive firearms have. Normally, they aren’t covered in camo like most hunting firearms. Nor are they as finely stylized, refined and expensive as a collector’s piece. Keep in mind however, there can always be some crossover between these different subsections of the firearm industry. I have used my carry gun in shooting competitions and history is full of people defending their lives with their hunting rifles. I find, however, a gun specifically designed for a purpose will fulfill that purpose far more effectively and efficiently than a gun designed for another purpose. For example, the long-barreled hunting shotguns are great in the field but would be awkward as a home defense gun. I can just picture knocking over a lamp as I swing to face the door. Home defense shotguns typically have 18.5 inch barrels to avoid just that scenario.

 Reasons for Buying a Self Defense Firearm

As I dig deeper into my customer’s motivation for buying a self-defense type of firearm I typically encounter one of the following concerns:

Fear or an Awakened Sense of Vulnerability

criminalThis is, by far, the most common reason I hear. “My neighbor down the street was broken into… I have to walk a distance to get to my car at night… Our country appears to be on the verge of societal collapse and I want something to defend my family.” At the root of each reason is the innate desire to defend one’s person and loved ones. Frequently, that instinct has been dormant for years, only to be awakened by a violent encroachment into a person’s sense of normalcy. Many customers come in fresh from that defining moment, others wait and expand their knowledge before coming into our store. Some think about it for a long time and others go immediately and purchase a defensive tool. While I label this motivation as “Fear,” many others would label it as: “Preparation,” “Doing Your Duty,” “Precaution,” “Planning Ahead,” etc… I label it as “Fear” simply because that is the way it is most often presented to me, in the eyes of my customers.

freedom slaverySupporting the Constitution

Some of our customers feel it is their constitutional duty to own a firearm. With key voices in government speaking in terms that threatened the very possibility of firearm ownership last year, countless thousands purchased firearms as a peaceful protest. To many Americans, the ability to own arms is what separates free citizens from subjects, masters from slaves, and differentiates a free people from an enslaved nation.

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A Sad Awakening

While I find it intellectually stimulating to analyze the motivations of our customers, the results sadden me. The predominance of fear and vulnerability as a motivation for purchasing firearms is an indictment of the state of our country. When so many of its citizens are feeling so threatened by both street thugs and government actions that their only perceived recourse is to take up arms, a country is far farther down the proverbial slope then we all realize. Yes, firearms are, among other things, a great equalizer of force, an invaluable tool, and a worthy investment. After all, a gun is the quickest way to empower a 120 pound women to ward off a couple 250 pound thugs. Yet, what kind of society have we become that we knowingly allow such thugs to walk the streets? The thin veneer of peaceful society is wearing through and many people are waking up to realize it. These are the ones walking through our doors.

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