Pic of the Day: Ankles of Doom

Galco Ankle Glove Ruger LCR 357 Hornady Critical Defense

My favorite ankle carry setup? That’s easy. It’s a combination of the Galco Ankle Glove ankle holster, Ruger LCR 357 and Hornady Critical Defense 357 Magnum ammo.

I like the ankle glove for a number of reasons. The band is neoprene lined inside with sheepskin, so it’s stable and comfortable – even in hot weather. The gun holster is made from sturdy leather and perfectly fit for specific guns. Best of all, the holster compartment is molded completely outside of the ankle band, so your gun doesn’t press into your leg. When I’m wearing boots, I use the Ankle Glove as is. When wearing lower cut shoes, I add the Galco Calf Strap to hold the rig higher on my leg, so it’s not visible.

The extra ammo is carried on a Bianchi Speed Strip, which holds six rounds flat, so they fit comfortably in your pants pocket. Speaking of ammo, I like the Hornady Critical Defense 357 Magnum round as its power factor is somewhere between .38 Special +P and a full-power .357 Magnum. You can actually shoot it from the Ruger LCR 357 with good control.

At some point, I’ll have to add the Crimson Trace Lasergrip to the Ruger LCR 357 to complete the package.

Four Things You Can Do With a Rifle – Besides Hunt

Mary Kate is actually demonstrating two topics from the list here. She’s plinking with a 1950’s era Hakim 8mm Egyptian battle rifle. Who says history can’t be fun?

Mary Kate is actually demonstrating two topics from the list here. She’s plinking with a 1950’s era Hakim 8mm Egyptian battle rifle. Who says history can’t be fun?

Barbara is more of a hunter than I am. In this issue of First Shots News, she’ll tell you how to get started. While I hunt a little bit, mostly ducks and geese, she’s hard-core and chases down ill-tempered wild boars with flint knives. That’s what I’ve heard, and I’m sticking by that story.

My interest in guns and shooting are primarily a result of… guns and shooting. While I enjoy hunting, my primary interest is shooting just for the sake of shooting.

Embrace History

Rifles, perhaps even more than pistols, can have incredible stories to tell. When I first became interested in shooting, my first through tenth gun purchases were old battle rifles. To be more specific, I made a field trip to the Civilian Marksmanship Program sales center in Camp Perry Ohio to handpick some history. If you’re not aware of the CMP, check out their website. It’s a government chartered (not government operated) organization founded as part of the 1903 War Appropriations Act. the idea was to help the militia, that’s all of us, become proficient and safe markspeople.

As part of the charter, the CMP sells surplus rifles and ammunition. They sold me a Springfield Armory 1903 A3 bolt action rifle and an M1 Garand manufactured in January of 1945. Every time I shoot those rifles, I wonder where they’ve been. Did they make an ocean crossing to Europe or the Pacific islands? Or were they used for training and coastal defense here at home? I’ll never know, but will always wonder.

Walk through any gun show and you’re bound to find hundreds of guns with stories. Old West? World Wars? The first shooting competitions? You never know. Whether you plan to shoot an old rifle with a story or not, it’s a fantastic way to hold a tangible piece of history.

Defend Your Home

Contrary to popular assumption, rifles can be a great home defense option, provided you choose the right platform. Unless you live somewhere like Encampment, Wyoming, you need to worry about over penetration. Consequently, using your .30-06 hunting rifle for home defense is not necessarily a great idea, as projectiles can travel through walls, houses, trees, cars and who knows what else. Here’s where the right platform choice comes into play. Did you know that (generally speaking) a projectile from a Modern Sporting Rifle will penetrate walls less than a standard pistol round? Regular 55 grain .223 Remington bullets are light, and fly very fast, so they tend to tumble and break apart when they hit solid objects like drywall, furniture and especially exterior walls. So, counter to assumption, a rifle can offer less risk of unwanted penetration.

Additionally, rifles are easier to shoot accurately under stress. First of all, you support a rifle with two hands. Second, the sight radius, or distance between sights, is longer. Small movements in the sight picture do not translate into big misses as can be the case with a handgun. Last, rifles offer near infinite customization capability. Lights, lasers, grips and slings can all be added and tweaked to your exact preference.

Read the rest in the NSSF First Shots Newsletter!

 

Be sure to check out Tom’s latest books! They are ON SALE now for a limited time!

ATI’s Ruger 10/22 AR-22 Stock System: Turn Your .22 Into a Tactical Beast

Believe it or not, this was a plain Ruger 10/22 Carbine not long ago...

Believe it or not, this was a plain Ruger 10/22 Carbine not long ago…

This week we’re going to invest in plastic surgery. No Kardashians will be involved, I promise.

While many might argue that I myself need it, I’m going to direct this decidedly non-medical procedure at a plain Ruger 10/22 Carbine .22LR plinker. The Ruger 10/22 Carbine is the basic model, with wood stock that usually sells for a street price of less than $250.

I’m going to turn it into… exactly the same rifle it was before. It will have the same functionally, but with a few cosmetic and usability improvements. You know, the kind of changes that turn a rifle into an assault weapon, whatever that is. It will have the same operating system. It will have the same magazine capacity. It will have the same caliber. It will not fire grenades. But it will look exceptionally cool. It will be easier to handle. It will be adjustable to fit shooters of different sizes and statures. It will probably make Michael Bloomberg apoplectic for no good reason at all.

What is it?

I’m talking about the ATI Ruger® 10/22® AR-22 Stock System with 8-Sided Forend. This complete stock replacement kit turns your vanilla Ruger into a tactical beast. Yeah, it’s really cool looking and incredibly fun to shoot.

Yes, some of the features are purely cosmetic, like the forward assist, safety lever, charging handle and bolt release. That’s OK, because the way the system is designed, those functions (barring the forward assist) are all covered by the existing buttons and levers on the Ruger 10/22 receiver. The idea is to provide a look and feel alike rifle to a standard AR type – great for practice and training at much lower cost to shoot.

What makes the ATI kit useful for your Ruger 10/22 are the functions that it adds. For example, the six position stock. Like a real AR-type rifle, the stock is adjustable from short to long length of pull along a faux buffer tube made of aluminum. The stock has a nice (and soft) butt pad to absorb whatever recoil your .22LR load of choice has. More importantly, the butt pad serves to provide solid placement on your shoulder so the rifle doesn’t move around when you’re emptying a 25 round magazine at a platoon of hubbard squash. The warts on that stuff are creepy.

While we’re talking about the stock improvements, an even more important feature is the adjustable cheek rest. You can raise and lower this using a screwdriver. Got low scope rings? No problem. Got a high mount just like your .223 Remington / 5.56mm AR? No problem. Adjust away. Oh, and the cheek rest has a soft rubber pad on top to protect your jawbone from the earth-shattering recoil of the .22LR.

The kit also adds a pistol grip, so if you want to use cheap (in comparison to .223 / 5.56mm) rounds for practice, it will feel somewhat like your AR type rifle. As a nice extra, the pistol grip has a textured rubber back strap and feels great during extended shooting sessions.

 

Read the rest at OutdoorHub!

 

The Rookie's Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

Gun of the Day: What’s Wrong with This Picture?

Ruger Vaquero chambered in 40 S&W and .38-40

Ruger Vaquero chambered in 40 S&W and .38-40

What's wrong with this picture?

What’s wrong with this picture?

I went shooting with friend and fellow gun writer William yesterday afternoon and he brought along the un-possible.

Here’s a Ruger Vaquero. No big deal, they’re pretty common. If you haven’t seen one, they’re beautiful single action pistols. I was a little surprised as Williams is a complete and total .40 S&W caliber nut. He doesn’t own anything that’s not chambered in .40 S&W. While he won’t admit it, I think his trap shotgun is secretly chambered in .40 S&W.

Anyway, after pulling this beauty out of its case, he proceeded to open a box of Winchester .40 S&W practice rounds. Huh? Usually he knows his way around a handgun, but today maybe not.

With all the unusual things manufacturers stamp on their guns these days, here's one you don't see often.

With all the unusual things manufacturers stamp on their guns these days, here’s one you don’t see often.

Turns out he got his hands on a special edition model chambered in .38-40 and .40 S&W. Like the Ruger Single Six .22LR / .22 Magnum conversion, this one comes with two cylinders for those respective calibers.

Fun? Yep.

Why? Why not?

Cabelas has one in their Wisconsin store

Lessons From The Playhouse: A LaserMax And Gunsite Adventure

What can you learn from a playhouse? Life-saving tips, actually.

Step 1 of the house clearing exercise - opening the door. The Glock is equipped with a Simunitions conversion and the new LaserMax Native Green laser.

Step 1 of the house clearing exercise – opening the door. The Glock is equipped with a Simunitions conversion and the new LaserMax Native Green laser.

I just returned from a few days at Gunsite Academy – one of the nations premier shooting academies located just outside of Prescott, Arizona. That’s pronounced more like “biscuit” by the way, not “Scott.” You may also know of Prescott as Sturm, Ruger and Company builds most of their pistols there. It’s a gun friendly place to say the least.

I ended up at Gunsite thanks to the good folks at LaserMax. They’ve got some big news that will ripple through the laser sighting industry over the next couple of years – Native Green technology. We’ll talk more about that next week when I write a separate article on Native Green laser technology. For now, just be aware that green laser light is currently generated by shooting an infrared laser through some ‘magic’ crystals to “create” green light. Native Green lasers generate bright green light right off the bat with no conversion required.

Chris is not telling me how awesomely tactical I am. He's telling me to stop "water skiing" and that I just shot the bad guy in the hand.

Chris is not telling me how awesomely tactical I am. He’s telling me to stop “water skiing” and that I just shot the bad guy in the hand.

The LaserMax team enlisted the Gunsite staff to help us test out the new LaserMax Native Green lasers in a variety of scenarios, one of which was clearing the famous Gunsite Playhouse. The Playhouse is a specially constructed building designed to simulate a home or business with multiple rooms, hallways and hidden corners and nooks. In other words, it has lots of places for innocent bystander and bad guy targets to hide. The Playhouse is set up to handle either live fire from real guns or Simunitions marking projectile rounds. We used Glocks configured with Simunitions conversions so we could easily see hits. Using Simunitions in the Playhouse also allowed us to take pictures from a catwalk above during the exercises without risk of losing photographers to friendly fire.

I’m an experienced shooter and have taken a number of self-defense shooting classes. One predictable outcome from every training experience is that there are always leaning epiphanies. This time was no different.

First, I must stress how much our Gunsite Rangemasters, Mike Moore and Chris Weare, emphasized that you never, ever, ever, ever want to clear a house on your own. It’s a bad tactic and you’re at a major disadvantage from the start. The purpose of this drill was to learn some basic clearing techniques in the event you had to “clear” a building in order to get out of it, or perhaps reach a loved one in trouble. If you ever arrive at your home or business and see signs that there’s been a break in, back up and call 911. Don’t go in on your own.

We were given minimum instructions: open the front door and “deal” with things. That’s it. At the end of my three or four minute house clearing, I thought about what went right and what went wrong.

Read the rest at OutdoorHub.com!

LaserMax Ends The Rodent Chronicles Arms Race?

If you’ve been around here a while, you might remember a little incident involving wetlands, a raised home and a rat.

It all started when a hot-shot realtor, wearing capri pants, sold us a home surrounded by “wetlands.” You see, “wetlands” is realtor-code for “swamp.” And where there’s swamp, there’s rodents. Some, like deer and the occasional fox are fun to have around. Others, like rats, just need to be shot.

It’s not as bad as it sounds though. Many “wetlands” homes are raised, meaning the first floor is actually one level up. This leaves a big open area underneath that most folks would consider a garage. We, who are in the know, call it a flood facilitation zone, as the next big tsunami will wash a few shrimp boats and mobile homes through there. Anyway, one of the benefits of raised homes is that the swamp critters don’t have direct access to your living quarters, but they do on occasion invite themselves into your garage area.

The problem is this. Normal Ruger 10/22 aiming is just fine with the standard iron sights, or maybe a low power optic. But as varmint squatters only appear in dark conditions, you can’t really see sight or optics. I’ve tried other strategies with mixed success. One plan was to flip on the lights and rely on a snap shot before that little beast of my burden could scurry back into his hole like the coward he is. That was great fun until I snap shot the gas line. $75, and a lame explanation to the gas repairman later, I decided to try something different. In my defense, the gas fixit guy did say he had seen weirder things, but he declined to specify.

The best solution seemed to be application of advanced technology, because even though I think rats might just have opposable thumbs, I’m pretty sure they can’t read instructions. That means advantage me in the arms race. As the rat extermination gun of choice is a Ruger 10/22, I ruled out a night vision scope as that would just look silly.

The LaserMax Ruger 10/22 Laser turns your rifle into the equivalent of an Abrams tank ballistic fire control system. Well, almost.

The LaserMax Ruger 10/22 Laser turns your rifle into the equivalent of an Abrams tank ballistic fire control system. Well, almost.

Enter the new LaserMax Ruger 10/22 laser.

This little rodent illumination gem changes the whole ball game. I can now lurk in the shadows and dot that little garage squatter at leisure.

Here’s how it works.

Installation is a snap. Just remove the barrel band and slide it on.

Installation is a snap. Just remove the barrel band and slide it on.

The LaserMax Ruger 10/22 Laser is designed to replace the existing barrel band on the 10/22. After removal of the factory barrel band, the LaserMax 10/22 assembly slides right on to the the stock fore end. Kind of like a tactical beanie. Insert the included battery and tighten a couple of screws and you’re good to go.

To activate the laser, simply press the side lever right to left, or left to right if you’re feeling particularly rebellious, and it will stay on until you un-depress the lever. The switch is perfectly placed for your support hand to activate and deactivate easily.

Next, making sure your rifle is really and truly unloaded (chamber too!) aim it at a safe backstop and see how that newly-minted laser dot lines up with your iron sights. Windage and elevation adjustments are sensitive and you won’t need to use more than 1/2 turn total. If you do, something’s wrong with your mounting job. Once at the range, you can tweak the laser alignment to your preference , but lining up at home with your iron sights will get you really, really close.

Battery is included and note the accessory rail - they're on both sides.

Battery is included and note the accessory rail – they’re on both sides.

One of the neat things about the mount is that the laser is positioned directly under the bore and not offset to one side or the other. Using a sophisticated measuring device known in engineering circles as a ruler, I estimate the laser is just about 5/8 of an inch below the bore. So you can align the laser parallel with the bore, knowing that your shot will hit 5/8″ above at closer distances, or you can zero point of impact at a desired distance. Your choice.

One other note about the mount. Short rails are on both sides so you can mount a sling swivel, light, or any other rail mounted accessory you like.

The LaserMax Ruger 10/22 Laser is available in a couple of ways. If you already have a Ruger 10/22 rifle, you can order one as an add-on accessory. Or, if you’re in the market for the world’s most useful .22 rifle, order one ready to go from a Ruger dealer.

All in all this is one nifty add-on for a Ruger 10/22. It adds virtually no weight or bulk, and won’t get in the way of daytime shooting with iron sights or a scope. But it sure adds a lot of fun.

Keeping the garage rodent free is no longer a challenge.

Boom.

 

Top 10 Shooting Industry Masters Fun Facts

Tisma Juett is only serious about two things: shooting and leading the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s (NSSF) First Shots program. When it comes to something as serious as the Ruger/Smith & Wesson Rimfire Rodeo, stand back! I’m pretty sure I felt all the available oxygen being sucked out of the area when Tisma started to focus. And when it comes to getting new people into the shooting sports, the game rises to a whole new level. One of her first projects upon taking the reins of First Shots was to schedule a series of events literally surrounding Washington, D.C. I think that’s called “throwing down the gauntlet.” Dear politicians: you think you got game? Ha! You’re rookies!

Tisma Juett is serious about two things: Shooting and NSSF First Shots. Shown here taking aim at the Ruger/Smith & Wesson Rimfire Rodeo event.

The NSSF Team, left to right: Bill Brassard, Tisma Juett, USA Shooting 3-time Olympian Matt Emmons (just photo-bombing here), Randy Clark and Steve Sanetti

Hosting free beginner First Shots seminars requires cash, and that’s where the great folks at FMG Publications step in. Publishers of American HandgunnerGuns MagazineAmerican Cop, and numerous special issues, FMG has hosted theShooting Industry Masters event to benefit First Shots and USA Shooting for 11 years now.

The NSSF Team, left to right: Bill Brassard, Tisma Juett, USA Shooting 3-time Olympian Matt Emmons (just photo-bombing here), Randy Clark and Steve Sanetti

The NSSF Team, left to right: Bill Brassard, Tisma Juett, USA Shooting 3-time Olympian Matt Emmons (just photo-bombing here), Randy Clark and Steve Sanetti

Not familiar with the Shooting Industry Masters? Let’s take a quick look at the top 10 Masters fun facts:

1. NSSF First Shots Benefits! Over the past 11 events, hundreds of thousands of dollars have been raised and donated to NSSF First Shots. That’s a lot of green that helps emerging “green” shooters become safe and proficient.

2. Olympic shooters can be bought! While the IOC might frown on the outright cheating and bribery, one of the fun parts of the Shooting Industry Masters is that teams can “purchase” a ringer from the U.S. Olympic Shooting Team to help improve their scores. It’s OK though, the competition is just for fun and fundraising.

Read the rest at OutdoorHub.com!

How To Add GI Aperture Sights To Your Ruger 10/22 Rifle

So you wanna be a better RifleMan, RifleWoman or RifleKid?

The first steps might be to focus on the fundamentals like body position, trigger control, breathing control, natural point of aim and developing the ability to call your shot. A great way to work on these skills is to work with iron sights and shoot at targets just 25 yards away. Why? At short range, you can see your hits on target and gain instant feedback. And if you can shoot a really, really small groups at 25 yards, you can shoot effectively at 100, 200 or even 500 yards – assuming you can see the target.

You could launch thousands of rounds down range from your AR-15, M1A, AK-47 variant or bolt-action rifle. But with the current cost and availability issues for ammo, it might be easier and less expensive to take up high-performance lawn tractor racing.

Or you could do a quick upgrade to an inexpensive and broadly available .22 rifle to simulate a high-powered rifle. That’s what the Project Appleseed rifleman experts recommend. Use something simple, available and inexpensive, like a Ruger 10/22, equipped with GI Aperture sights to simulate a battle rifle configuration. Then you can improve your fundamental skills without breaking the bank. All of those skills you develop shooting a .22 rifle translate directly to shooting a larger caliber rifle – like an M1A, M2 Garand, M1 Carbine, AR-15, FAL or AK.

Following a tip from the Project Appleseed website, I elected to modify a .22LR rifle with the Tech Sights “GI” Aperture Sights for the Ruger 10/22. The Tech Sights kit includes an adjustable rear sight and  front sight replacement that uses a standard AR type front sight post. So if you want to get really fancy, you can replace the sight post with an aftermarket one like the XS Sights High-Visibility Round-Top Front Sight Post.

Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22  2

The rear sight assembly mounts at the very back of the Ruger 10/22 receiver using the scope base mount holes already there.

The version I tested is the TRS200 model and as shown above features adjustable windage and elevation dials on the rear sight assembly with a single aperture. Tech Sights also offers a flip-up aperture version where the rear sight has a large aperture for close range shooting and a small aperture for longer range shooting.

Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22

The Tech Sights “GI” Aperture Sights kit for the Ruger 10/22 provides replacement sight for both the front and rear sights on the factory default rifle.

One feature to note about the Tech Sights GI Aperture Sights is that elevation is adjustable on both the front and rear sights. The front sight works just like an AR-15 front sight and you can easily raise and lower point of impact by pressing in the detent button and rotating the post. I chose to configure mine so that the rear sight sat low in the assembly when zeroed at 25 yards. The logic being that having the aperture as low as possible and inset into the sight base would provide better protection from knocks and dings.

How to install the Tech Sights GI Aperture sights on your Ruger 10/22

Ruger 10 22 front sight removal Ready for an adventure? Try removing the front sight from a factory standard Ruger 10/22. It probably takes less force to dislodge Michael Moore from a CiCi’s pizza all you can eat buffet. It comes off moving from left to right as you’re holding the rifle normally. The challenge is that Ruger installs a little nub on the bottom of the factory sight, then jams it into the dovetail on the barrel. This is done for good reason – so the sight won’t ever move under lots and lots of shooting. The problem only occurs when you want to remove it to install a different front sight. You can do this by placing the barrel against a firm (but non-scratching!) surface and whacking the bottom of the sight with a hammer and punch. Be careful, as you’ll really need to smack it to break the sight loose. If you can use a hard piece of plastic to support the barrel, that won’t give as much as wood and you’ll have better luck at knocking the sight out. Just a fair warning, this can be an adventure. That sight is installed really, really tightly.
Ruger 10 22 front sight removal  1 A lower risk method of removing the front sight is to use a sight pusher. If you don’t have one, maybe you can beg, borrow or steal one from a friend. Of you can can get one of these general purpose Williams Gun Sight Front Sight Pushers from Brownells. This can be used for most any front sight where the dovetail is not cut directly into the round barrel. It removed the very stubborn Ruger 10/22 front sight easily.
Brownells Magna Tip Screwdriver Set While we’re talking tools, if you don’t have a set of gunsmith screwdrivers, you might want to consider investing. Gunsmith screwdrivers have the blades ground flat and have bits sized for common gun applications. Why flat-ground you ask? You’re far less likely to butch up your screw heads using a properly fitted screwdriver. Trust me on this one. And a Brownells Magna-Tip screwdriver set like this one is not expensive.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22 installation OK, let’s get busy installing the front sight. First, start the socket set screw into the front of the sight base as shown here. DO NOT tighten it yet! This screw will eventually expand the dovetail of the sight base to lock it in place. For now, you just want to get it started as it’s easier to get into place before you install the sight base in the barrel dovetail.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22 installation  1 Now, slide the new Tech Sights GI Aperture base into the dovetail from the right side – just the reverse of how you removed the factory Ruger sight.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22 installation  7 The kit includes two button head screws and washers that install on either side of the sight base to center and support it on in the dovetail slot.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22 installation  2 How you can tighten up the front set screw to lock the base firmly into position. If you’re sure it’s how you want it for a while, apply a little Blue Loctite to all three front sight screws.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22 installation  4 The rear sight is a snap to install as the Ruger 10/22 receiver includes holes for a scope base mount. These will have small screws in place, so just remove the two towards the rear of the receiver.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22  1 The Tech Sights GI Aperture Rear Sight will fit over the two rear scope base holes. Just attach it to the receiver with the included screws. Again, you may want to use a little Blue Loctite if you plan on using this for a while.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22 windage The TRS200 model rear sight includes a windage adjustment dial. Each hole indicates a 1/8″ left-right adjustment at 20 yards, or 5/8″ at 100 yards.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22 rear elevation The rear aperture is set with an adjustable elevation dial. Each click (visible by the white vertical lines, adjusts point of impact up or down by 1/8″ at 20 yards.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22 front The front post is also elevation adjustable. By pressing the detent button down and rotating the site post, you can adjust elevation by 1/8″ at 20 yards. Since both front and rear sights have elevation adjustments, you can configure the height of each according to your preference.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22  4 Like its military big brothers, the Tech Sights (front and rear) are protected by wings. I also found that the side wings help reduce glare on the sight post.
Tech Sights GI Aperture for Ruger 10 22  5 A side view of the rear sight installed.

 

This is a nifty little upgrade for a couple of reasons. First, I found the sight picture clear and fast to acquire. The brass bead on the Ruger 10/22 factory front sight is great and easy to see, but I’m not a big fan of the rear leaf sight. Those tend to feel slower for me, but that’s a personal preference issue. More importantly, the Tech Sight mounts about 8 inches further back from the factory rear leaf sight, so the overall sight radius is longer. While the 8″ longer sight radius does not make the rifle “more accurate,” it DOES make the rifle easier to shoot more accurately.

This is a great way to make yourself a fantastic practice rifle. And it’s plenty good for just fun plinking as well. Of course, to really prepare your Ruger 10/22 for rifleman practice, you’ll want to add a sling. We’ll cover that in a separate article.

 

Tech Sights, LLC Ruger 10/22 Gi-Style Aperture Sights
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A Litte More On Rule 1: A Gun Is Always Loaded

Rule 1: A Gun Is Always Loaded

Rule 1: A Gun Is Always Loaded

Rule 1: A gun is always loaded!

Yes. Always. Even when it’s not.

Every year we hear about people who are accidentally shot with ‘unloaded’ guns.

  • “I thought it was unloaded!”
  • “I’m sure I unloaded it last time I put it away!”
  • “It wasn’t loaded before!”
  • “Maybe I was loaded last time I unloaded it!”

Of course, a gun is not technically always loaded. But the intent of Rule 1 is to treat a gun as if it’s always loaded. If you treat a gun like it is loaded, you tend to change your behavior in terms of how you handle that gun.

Hopefully you won’t check out the sights by aiming it at someone.

Hopefully you won’t pull the trigger, unless you’re actually ready to fire the gun at a safe target. More on that in a minute.

And hopefully you won’t do anything else careless with it.

Rule 1 is first on the priority list, because it’s Rule 1, but also because it covers a lot of safety ground. Treating a gun like it is loaded and ready to fire has a fantastic ripple effect that makes everyone around safer.

So take it seriously. Pretend that a gun is loaded every single time you look at it or touch it. Pretty soon you’ll start believing that it IS actually loaded. Even when you look, and verify that it’s not, you’ll want to look again to make sure. This is a good thing. Never ignore a gut feeling to check the status of a gun just one more time to be sure.

Ruger LCR Revolver loaded rule one

Is this Ruger LCR loaded? Trick question! Of course it’s loaded!

I like to have some fun with this when teaching new shooters the safety rules. Not for fun’s sake alone, but to really drive home the point.

Immediately after telling them Rule 1, the gun is always loaded, I pick up a gun, point it in a safe direction, and open gun’s action to show them. It’s empty of course, but I don’t tell them that. I ask them if the gun is loaded. It’s even better when both kids and adults are present in this new shooter orientation. Almost without fail, the kids look at me with an odd puzzled look for a second, then respond “Yes! It IS loaded!” Kids are much better students than adults. They love getting this trick question right! Adults tend to score about 50% on this pop quiz. About half of them look intently then tell me that the gun appears to be unloaded. We all have a quick laugh when I tell them, “WRONG! It’s ALWAYS loaded!” Then they get it.

So be creative when talking about the rules of gun safety with others. You can have fun teaching people to be safe – and just maybe they’ll tend to remember a little better!

Buyers Guide: Blackhawk! Leather Speed Classic Gun Holster

My Gun Culture Shooting Buyers Guide

Blackhawk! Leather Speed Classic Snubnose Revolver Holster

Blackhawk! Leather Speed Classic Snubnose Revolver Holster

We recently reviewed the Blackhawk! Leather Speed Classic Holster for a Ruger LCR revolver and found it to be an excellent concealed carry solution for several reasons.

It’s discreet. The design causes the revolver to ride high relative to the belt line. This makes for easier concealment and reduces the need for a knee-length photographers vest.

It’s fast. The gun is held in place by shape and side pressure. To draw, simply rock the revolver forward. An elastic strap connected the two leather halves of the Speed Classic. The forward rock allows the gun to release above and out the top front side of the holster.

Retention is great. The leather fit, with additional pressure applied by the elastic strap makes your snubbie revolver stay where it’s supposed to.

It’s comfortable. The outside the waistband design and high ride keep the gun out of the way in sitting and standing positions.

Fast, secure, and discreet. This one is a great solution for snubnose revolver users.

Available Here Blackhawk! Leather Speed Classic Gun Holster

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