What American Women Really Think of Gun Control

Published on Oct 2, 2015 12:45 PM
For the complete article, https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/article/what-american-women-really-think-of-gun-control

What American Women Really Think of Gun Control

A widely-reported Pew Research Center poll in December 2015 showed that more Americans supported gun rights than gun control for the first time in over two decades of polling. Fifty-two percent said that it was more important to protect the right of Americans to own guns, compared to 46 percent who said it was more important to restrict gun ownership. The poll also showed an increase in the amount of women who wanted to protect gun ownership, with support growing from 38 to 43 percent.

However, according to a poll conducted by YouGov and the Economist over July and August, 54 percent of women believed that laws covering the sale of handguns should be stricter, compared to 49 percent of men. Twenty-five percent of women, however, thought that there should be no change at all in gun laws, while a further 16 percent stated that laws should be less strict.

Professor Peter Squires, a professor of criminology and public policy at the University of Brighton in England, has studied American gun culture and is currently working on a book about women’s attitudes to guns. He told me that women in the US are probably the most armed in the world, “with the exception of Israel.”

“I think the split on gun ownership in America is probably 85 percent men to 55 percent women,” Squires said. “Globally, it’s 96 percent men to 4 percent women.” He believes that this is the result of the industry targeting female consumers. “I think the gun industry since the 1980s has been trying to market guns much more prominently to women, largely as a result of the male market being saturated.”

However, Squires is not convinced that gun ownership is increasing among women in the US. “I think the evidence is a bit ambiguous. To me, it looks like it’s flatlining [in terms of the national picture]. I get this from national polling data, the general households survey and the few polling organizations.”

When you talk to gun owners or people who teach courses, they say more women are doing it than did it in the past.

Kate Woolstenhulme, a Dallas-based businesswoman who designs handbags for concealed-carry handguns, believes that more women are actually buying guns and signing up to training courses than before. “When you talk to gun owners or people who teach courses, they say more women are doing it than did it in the past,” she said. “A lot of women are taking it more seriously, because there’s a lot of courses geared specifically to women, and the gun manufacturers have been catering to women by making smaller guns, guns that aren’t so heavy, and guns that are easier to carry. It’s [in a way] about supply and demand.”

Woolstenhulme estimates that she “probably sells about a thousand” bags a year and sees “more younger women coming into it.” Business for Designer Concealed Carry, her label, has remained “consistent.” “It’s been the same ever since it started—it’s consistent. It’s not really exploding. It’s been a slow and steady progression,” she said.

The National Sporting Goods Association is much more bullish about the number of women buying guns. According to the organization, there was a 60 percent increase in the number of women who participated in target shooting from 2001 to 2013. Fortune reports that the firearms industry has seen compound annual growth rate of eight percent over the last 30 years.

“The biggest driver is women getting into the shooting sports, and practicing concealed carry,” Brian Ruttenbur, an analyst with CRT Capital, told Fortune. “When you look at the demographics, what has happened is there’s been a rise in women being head of the household. So it started with concealed carry, as a protection thing, but now women are going and taking the family to the range for fun. You don’t see it in the major cities, but go ten miles outside the city, and gun ownership goes through the roof.”

Applying for a Concealed Carry Permit in Florida

Did you know that more than 900,000 people hold licenses to carry concealed firearms in Florida? If you are considering joining their ranks, there are two primary considerations : 1) how to obtain a Concealed Weapons License (CWL or CLP), and 2) what to do once you have one.

Obtaining Your Florida CWL

Step 1: Training

While there are exceptions (for former military, etc.), most people must take a course from a qualified professional, such as an NRA-certified trainer. You will need to provide a copy of your training certificate to the State of Florida when applying for your CWL.

Choosing the right course can be confusing. Many opt for the shortest or cheapest class possible, but is that really the best option? Consider this. If you are not properly trained to use a firearm, what good is carrying one?

Honestly evaluate your skill level when choosing a training course. Before applying for a CWL, be certain you understand the inner workings of your firearm, how to safely operate your pistol, how to choose the appropriate ammunition, and how to store both your firearm and ammunition to keep it out of the wrong hands. We recommend the NRA Basic Pistol Course to meet all of these requirements.

Step 2: Apply

Once you have a training certificate, you can send your application to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The process involves fingerprinting and a background check. While you can obtain and send your fingerprints, a photo, and the documentation in separately, we suggest you use Florida’s Fast Track Process.

With this process, you simply contact the Florida Department of Agriculture office closest to you and set up an appointment. During your appointment, you will provide a copy of your training certificate. (Don’t submit the original, as it won’t be returned to you!) You will complete a background questionnaire at a kiosk in the office, and the office staff will take your fingerprints and photo. After checking your identification, the office staff submits all of your paperwork for you, ensuring all documentation is complete before you leave the office.

Step 3: Wait

This is perhaps the most difficult piece to obtaining your CWL. The licensing process can take up to 90 days, during which time you get virtually no feedback. The Florida Department of Agriculture does have an Online Tracking Tool to check the status of CWL applications. Unfortunately, this tool only tells you whether your application is still being processed or has been completed. There is no estimated time for completion given to applicants.

Using Your CWL

Once you receive your CWL in the mail, be sure to carry it on you at all times that you are also carrying your firearm. Just as your driver’s license is proof that you are authorized to drive a vehicle, the CWL is proof that you have passed the training and background requirements to legally possess and conceal a handgun on your person.

Aside from allowing you to carry a firearm, your new CWL gives you another great benefit. You will no longer need to wait three business days to take home a new handgun.

Simply bring your CWL with you to any Florida gun dealer, along with your driver’s license, when you make a new gun purchase. This will allow the dealer to waive the three day wait, so you can take your new pistol home immediately!

Remember, though, carrying a pistol does not authorize you to acts of vigilantism. Nor should it embolden you to take unnecessary risks, such as walking alone in dangerous neighborhoods. Carrying a firearm brings with it a great level of responsibility, including the ability to determine when to act and when to step away from danger. The only fight you are sure to survive is the one you avoid. Be prepared and stay safe!

 

Justifiable Use of Lethal Force

Self-defense laws generally make it clear that victims of a potentially lethal attacks have the right to neutralize the attacker(s). How they may do so is not as clear cut as one might think.

While we can’t provide legal advice or try to explain the laws of the many U.S. states, we wrote this article to let our readers know what types of legal issues might arise from defending oneself in a violent attack. We urge anyone reading this article to become intimately familiar with their own state’s self-defense laws and seek out an attorney to provide specific clarification or advice.

Many of us have heard stories of criminals who, even after being found guilty of robbery or battery, are able to sue the victim for damages for injuries sustained in a self-defense situation. Civil awards may be rare, since courts and juries often sway towards the crime victim. Still, there are cases when good guys get sued for using “excessive” force to stop a crook.

People have also been successfully sued for beating up a criminal attempting to flee from robbing a bank or committing a range of other criminal offenses. In fact, legislation from certain so-called “Nanny States” actually allows burglars to sue their victims if the criminal gets injured for any reason while breaking into a home!

Worse yet, there are scenarios when innocent citizens are arrested and criminally charged for defending themselves.

Using Excessive Lethal Force in Personal Defense

The apex of this craziness relates to a relatively new legal concept of “excessive lethal force.” Depending on your jurisdiction, you may have to be on alert for just how you are allowed to defend yourself when your safety is jeopardized.

Rather than have the freedom to protect yourself with a firearm without regard to the well-being of an attacker, these laws require private citizens to justify each and every time they invoke lethal force while defending against being raped or potentially murdered. This law protects murderers and rapists from being “wrongfully killed” while they commit felonious assaults.

While all people should be justified in shooting an assailant who is directly threatening to kill them, the number of times you choose to pull the trigger matters. The number of shots that impact your target can be used to prosecute you if it can be asserted that you could have stopped the threat with anything other than lethal force. In such instances, you can risk going to jail for homicide if, in a self-defense situation, you “double tap” or shoot a potential killer twice.

Unfortunately, this legal principle of “only shoot-once and re-assess the threat” goes against every aspect of human nature.  In real, life-threatening situations, adrenaline kicks in, and our self preservation instinct typically results in emptying a magazine into the bad guy. It is human for such a flurry of firing in response to a deadly threat. It is what I would do. Regardless of the consequences.

However, be aware that your natural instinct for self-preservation can lead to murder charges in some jurisdictions. Even where so-called “Stand-Your-Ground” laws allow more leeway in response to threats, such as Florida, overzealous prosecutors can make your life hell.

Since we are not attorneys, we will not attempt to tell you when it is OK to use a gun to kill somebody in self-defense, regardless of where you are located. What we can tell you is that the “double tap” technique is still routinely taught in self-defense classes in order to increase the odds that a threat is neutralized. In fact, some would say that until a threat is on the ground and no longer moving, it continues to remain a threat.

Security guards are taught to use the double tap when an attacker menaces somebody while threatening lethal force, when the attacker is closer than 21 feet to the victim. They are taught to draw their weapon and shoot the assailant twice in the chest. They then are told to cease-fire and re-assess the situation.  Only if the attacker continues to shoot or threaten to shoot is there authority to re-engage.

What is also interesting to note is that police officers go beyond the double tap method when faced with a threat. They routinely empty their service weapons to be sure they have stopped the offender. Of course, the police have a special level of protection from criminal charges by District Attorneys that civilians do not possess, so don’t make the mistake of thinking you can follow the same procedures with impunity.

Protecting the Rights of Violent Felons

The following is an example where excessive lethal force laws have been applied to re-victimize a woman who was raped. It is derived from several real cases from “Nanny States” that would rather protect the rights of violent felons than support the rights of citizens to live free of violent threats.

 A 55-year old retired executive awoke to find a burglar in her bedroom.  He dragged Kay from the bed, pointing a gun at her head while threatening to rape her and ordering her to strip. She was able to distract the rapist long enough to grab her handgun and she “double-tapped” him, sending him to the floor in a pool of blood.

She carefully kept her gun trained on him and called 911. When the police arrived, they found her attacker laying dead in a pool of blood at her bedside. Barely saving her own life, she did not expect that her troubles were just beginning.

The Medical Examiner determined that her first shot was non-fatal and severed his spinal cord, rendering him paralyzed. This first shot effectively neutralized him as a continued threat.  The second shot, fired instantly after the first, killed him as he fell to the floor.

Because the second shot was unnecessary to neutralize the lethal threat against her, the District Attorney charged her with homicide!

It was no surprise that her attacker was a violent felon and a registered sex offender. Even though he was a repeat offender, his prior bad acts were “prejudicial” and the D.A was able to withhold facts about his bad character from the jury. The jury had no choice but to agree with the medical examiner’s unrefuted testimony that the second, fatal shot was unnecessary. The potential rape victim was ultimately convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to several years in the State Penitentiary.

To add insult to injury, the dead rapist’s son (who was also a convicted sex offender) also successfully sued her in civil court for excessive force.

“You have to determine whether your safety is more important than the risk of prosecution.”

 

Choosing the Right Firearm to Stop a Threat

If the law may only allow you to one chance to neutralize a lethal threat, make it count. The threat of being charged with excessive force makes it clear that all citizens should use the most powerful gun that they can safely and competently handle.  Some experts say that home defense calibers should certainly begin with a “4” (e.g. the .45 ACP or .44 Magnum). Others advocate using a 12 gauge shotgun for the best personal defense in the home. Since a shotgun is actually a number of projectiles, this makes a lot of sense. One shot has the same effect as several individual shots from a conventional handgun.

Regardless, consider a firearm with the most knock down power in a single shot. The human body is incredibly resilient, and there are cases where the police have failed to stop a crazed attacker even after clearing out an entire magazine of high-caliber ammunition!

Small .22- or .380-caliber “mouse guns” are considered by many to be a bad idea in a defense situation, since they are unlikely to stop an attacker and may actually serve to further anger him. Unless you are at point-blank range, with a direct hit to the head or chest, and using high-powered and hollow-point ammo, they may not have enough “wallop” to neutralize a determined adversary.

 


Warning:  A .380 “mouse gun” may not stop a lethal threat

 

Many people are intimidated by larger caliber guns because they have a large recoil, or kick. But not all of them are particularly unwieldy. Some of them, including the Kimber .45-caliber, are designed specifically for reduced recoil. While not cheap, even the meekest shooter should find them easy to operate with practice.

 

Ultra Crimson Carry II™

The Kimber Ultra Crimson Carry II, with a 3-inch, weighing 25 oz.

 

Many women are especially concerned about their ability to accurately shoot guns with the heavier 44 and 45 ammunition, opting instead for the greater impact velocity and greater cavation of a .357 magnum with hollow-point loads. We advocate practicing with the various forms of firearms at a shooting range, until you find one that has the right feel and fit to it.

Comparison of Different Caliber Ammunition


 Conclusion

You can increase your odds when you are forced to fire by getting closer to your attacker. At closer distances, with sufficient practice, you have the best chance of hitting your target with one shot. Still, no matter how well-trained you might be, it is instinctive to fire more than once in the heat of battle.

If you are well-trained, you know that in a gunfight you can’t be sure you will hit your target, especially if it is moving. Even if you do manage to get a shot off, there’s no guarantee that the first shot will stop the threat. Even a well-trained marksman can miss a shot in the heat of the moment.

Self-defense experts routinely train people to be sure the adversary is stopped. This typically means firing more than one shot to stop a threat. Anybody who attacks another person with a gun or a knife should be assumed to automatically relinquish all legal rights and right to life itself. Unfortunately, in many jurisdictions that is not the case.

While defending yourself by firing multiple times into an attacker may save your life, it may also result in terrible legal troubles. It is extremely important that you understand your rights in a self-defense situation and choose the appropriate gun for the situation. Don’t get victimized twice!

 


If you are interested in learning more:

Essential Guide to Handguns: Firearm Instruction for Personal Defense and Protection teaches that in certain “Nanny States,” any potential victim who defends themselves against a lethal attack must justify each and every bullet shot into somebody who is trying to kill them!

Another useful book for those of you in Florida is Florida Firearms Law, Use & Ownership 7th Ed. (Authoritative Guide That Explains Florida & Federal Laws on Firearms, Weapons and Self-Defense Issues)

The concept and portions of this article are rewritten from an original posting by Donald K. Burleson, January 2011

Handgun Accuracy

Many journal, on-line articles and other sources offer opinions regarding what are the “best” and most accurate semi-automatic handguns.  As you might expect, a custom-built handgun is typically designed to be most accurate. However, unless you are seriously competitive, many off-the-shelf guns are worth looking into.

A competitive shooter should be skilled enough to shoot a 6″ to 8″ grouping at 50 yards, and for self defense, it is a good idea to practice to this level of accuracy. As we discuss below, the type and design of gun as well as the ammunition are the salient factors, along with practice at the range. We will first discuss guns that are available with a reputation for accuracy. We will then discuss factors relating to ammunition.

When we are talking about accuracy, you don’t have to be a competitive shooter to appreciate the value of a good gun. Before we get started, let’s share the name of a man who is a legend among shooters. He holds many records over his 35 years of competitive shooting. He is not only deadly accurate, he is incredibly fast.   Jerry Miculek is so good, Smith & Wesson has modeled a gun for him, The Jerry Miculek Signature Model.” His Slavic name is pronounced “Mitch’-ooh-lek”.

Jerry Miculek Signature Model 929 8-shot 9mm revolver with 6.5" barrel

Jerry Miculek Signature Model 929  (courtesy of Smith & Wesson) (Retail Price $1,200)

 

The latest Miculek hype can be seen in the following video where he uses his signature 8-shot 9mm revolver with 6.5″ barrel revolver and Hornady ammo (147 grain). Using a Vortex red dot sight to hit a steel plate at 1,000 yards, he manages to break the target balloon with the resulting bullet splatter. This is truly impressive shooting.

 



 

First Steps to Understand Accuracy

Quality of Manufacture

Optimal handgun accuracy can be obtained by following a few guidelines. First of all, make sure that you are seeking what is termed as a “match grade” handgun. These are milled to 1,000 of an inch, which is 15 times closer than the cheaper handguns available on the market. Many people prefer semi-automatic guns, which are somewhat less expensive.

Barrel Length

While barrel length matters to improve the accuracy of your aim, do not rely on length alone. It is true that a sub-nose has less accuracy than a six-inch barrel, but other features of the gun matter as well. Once a gun extends beyond about eight inches, the length can actually hinder aiming, and without good and steady sighting, accuracy is impossible.

Long Barreled Handgun

Longer barrels can impede accuracy if the weight affects its handling


The Most Accurate .22-caliber Semi-automatic Handguns

Many models of .22 caliber pistols provide a good way to practice. They have low recoil, or kickback, and the ammunition is inexpensive. Due to their low relative weight, they also will not cause a lot of fatigue after multiple reloadings at the range. They are by far the best way to learn pistol shooting. The guns themselves can also be low-priced, although there is a wide range of available .22 target pistols, ranging from as low as $400 to as high as $2,000 for those who are into serious competition.

Most experts agree that the .22 caliber is not highly recommended for personal defense. However, when up close, they can have sufficient stopping power if you use high-power ammo, especially hollow point. Increasing their appeal is the low recoil that allows a number of quality shots on-target and in fast order. If you can quickly get a series of shots that hit accurately in the forehead or chest, there are many .22 caliber handguns that will shoot a two inch group at 50 yards.

The most accurate .22 caliber handguns, excluding the purely competitive “match handguns” that are not made for ordinary self defense, are presented here in alphabetical order:

  • Browning Buckmark
  • Colt Woodsman
  • High Standard Supermatic Tournament – Great, but costly
  • Ruger Mark III  [Spoiler AlertWe think this is the best you will find at its price point.]

 


Browning Buck Mark: Looks great with a good, balanced feel with good size and weight. It is easy to clean and maintain, but has limited add-ons. A great target pistol for about $500. The rear sight permits minute adjustments.

 

 

Browning-Buck-Mark-Practical-URX-051448-546lBrowning Buck Mark


Colt Woodsman: Designed as a hunting gun, it is accurate and attractive. They are no longer made, but are readily available in the secondary market. Price varies.

Colt Woodsman Sport .22


High Standard Supermatic Tournament, Citation or Trophy: Probably the best .22 target pistol. Hi-Standard’s retail price of $925 is a lot more than average for a pistol. The barrel is longer and it weighs almost a pound more than its competitors.

The High Standard Supermatic Tournament


Ruger Mark III: Overall, the best target pistol, with lots of safety features and loads of 3rd-party add-ons for the rail.  The only downside is that some models look like a Nazi Luger, since that is what the original designs was modeled after. The most current model is not markedly different in accuracy than the Mark II. This is an autoloading (‘blowback’) operated pistol that has a 10-round magazine. The Ruger Mark III pistols come in several models including the standard, a target and government-target variety (with a heavier barrel and built-in laser sights), and a competition, hunter and the 22/45 models. $500 to $600.

The Ruger Mark III
The Ruger Mark III model 512 in stainless steel

The Ruger Mark III is among the best gun for target practice for many reasons, including its safety features, its great looks and feel, its high accuracy, and the availability of many 3rd-party add-ons. It also includes a standard rail for red dot sights or telescopic sights. It is available in several models, including a target model that has a heavier barrel to limit overheating, reduce recoil, and increase accuracy. The Threaded Barrel models are very similar in configuration and include a threaded barrel for the addition of a compensator or suppressor. Additionally, some Mark III pistols have adjustable sights, and all are drilled and tapped for a Weaver-style scope base which ships with the pistol.

It is beyond the scope of this article, but of course red dots, like those from Vortex can help with your aim over certain distance. There are many Red Dot scopes for the Ruger Mark II and Mark III, including:

  • Ultradot matchdot
  • C-More
  • Gander Mountain Tru Glow
  • Aimpoint Micro R-1
  • Millet red dot SP
  • Burris Fastfire II
  • Vortex Strikefire

target_pistol_ruger_mark_iii_red_dotThe Ruger Mark III, blued alloy-steel, with rail supports red dot sights

This gun has a few downsides including some over-the-top safety features. There is a magazine disconnect that prevents the pistol from being fired with the magazine removed from the pistol, and there is an internal safety lock that allows you to use a key to lock the safety in the “safe” position. It also features a loaded chamber indicator, letting you see from the left side whether the magazine is loaded. It has an associated magazine disconnect that does not allow it to be fired when a magazine is not present.

Although these features make it very secure, they also make it more complex than necessary. It is also a difficult gun to learn how to properly clean. It is recommended that you have a gunsmith teach you how to field strip it, which is not particularly easy, and should not be attempted without proper instruction.

As we discuss below, it also has a propensity for jamming if you use ammunition that is not at least 40 grain. Guns that require specific types of ammunition are known as fussy eaters, and this one simply demands 40 grain bullets for enough force to eject spent shells and properly reload.


If you are interested in other range-specific .22 caliber handguns to consider, the best are listed here:

Beretta Ne:

Very High-tech look, but watch for the recoil, and it’s not made in America.


 

Olympic I.S.U.:

High Standard Model 107 Olympic ISU

 High Standard Model 107 Olympic ISU


 

Walther GSP: This target pistol is among the most expensive .22 target pistols at over $2,000. You would, however, get what you pay for.


The Walther GSP is. They have futuristic design elements

 


 The Most Accurate 9 mm Semi-automatic Handguns

As a stronger gun than a .22-caliber, but easier to handle than the .45 ACP, the following 9mm semi-automatic handguns are known for their accuracy.

 

Sig Sauer P210, Legend, Legend Target and Legend Super Target: Claimed to be the world’s most accurate handgun. New ones are at least $3,500 and used ones start around $2,000.


Sig Sauer P210, Legend, Legend Target and Legend Super Target


 

CZ 75: The CZ is a Czech product (Ceska Zbrojovka) that makes a highly accurate weapon for under $800.

CZ 75 B

The CZ 75


The Sig P250:  The Sig Sauer 2SUM is available in 9 mm and 40 caliber. While not match grade semi-automatic, it is a very accurate handgun.  An interchangeable parts kits makes this two guns!  $725.

 SIG_P250


The Most Accurate .45 caliber Semi-automatic Handguns

Many experts recommend the following .45 caliber semi-automatic handguns for their accuracy.  In the .45 caliber, many people prefer custom-designed 1911 models, using specialized parts like the Caspian frame and jeweled triggers. The following semi-automatic .45 pistols are commercially-available. There are multiple sources on the Internet for custom builds.

 

Kimber Gold Match II Stainless: This is a remarkable match grade .45 caliber, with adjustable trigger, on par with the custom built semi-automatic handguns. It costs about $1,600.

1911_45_The Kimber Gold Match IIThe Kimber Gold Match II in Stainless Steel


Colt Gold Cup .45 national match –The Colt Gold Cup is known as the finest shooting semi-automatic 1911 model .45-caliber in the world, and is considered the standard for competitive guns. Pricing is around $1,200.

Colt Mark IV Gold Cup

The Colt 1911, Series 80, Mark IV, Gold Cup, National Match


 

Smith & Wesson 945 match – .45 caliber

Smith & Wesson 945

 


 

CZ-97B: A true “match grade” semi-automatic, the CZ makes great handguns and the cost is only $707

CZ 97 B

The CZ 97 B is the big-bore brother to the 75 B.


 

Heckler and Koch (German) HK Mark 23: A match-grade pistol, this gun is similar to the model made for the U.S. government Special Operations Forces. It is capable of making a 2-inch group at 25 yards. Around $2,250, but high-quality and highly-respected.


Other Calibers of High-Accuracy Semi-automatic Handguns

 

Remington XP-100. This .221 caliber model is claimed to be able shoot 3/8″ groups at 100 yards with telescopic sight.

Remington XP-100

This experimental model is both unique and fun to shoot.

 


 Smith & Wesson Model 52: This .38 caliber model has a used sale price around $1,500.

SmithandWesson52

Though discontinued, this model can still be found on the used market.

 


Wilson Combat Supergrade: Wilson Combat makes these available in multiple calibers including .45 ACP, 10 mm, .40 S&W, .38 Super, and 9 mm at a super high price, starting at $5,200.

http://wilsoncombat.com/new/new-images/handguns/classic-supergrade/wilson-combat-classic-supergrade-1.jpg

Wilson Combat makes a beautiful Super Grade gun


Magnum Research Desert Eagle, .50 AE: This 50 caliber monster sells for $1,600.

Desert Eagle, .50 AEMagnum Research Desert Eagle


Smith & Wesson Model 500: The .50 caliber S&W Magnum is the most powerful production revolver on the market today! At a whopping 72.5 oz., and 2600 ft./lb. Muzzle Energy, it is not for the weak-of-heart. In 2003, S&W ushered in the era of the “big gun.” For ultimate power and velocity, nothing comes close to this X-Frame model handgun. A relative bargain at $1,369.

S&W 500Dirty Harry’s 44 Magnum is no longer the most powerful handgun in the world.


Note: If you have other recommendations for high accuracy handguns, please e-mail the address at the upper left and let us know.

 


Ammunition

As we said above, a quality handgun is only part of the battle. The second consideration is the ammunition you are using. Ammo can make the difference, and you will need to test a few different manufacturers for your specific handgun model. Using a bench rest helps to fix the pistol’s aim so that the only factor would be the ammo.

38-ammo-ammuntion-banner

Ammunition affects the accuracy and range of handguns

If you are shooting at a range for the fun of it, and cost matters, use whatever is cheap. But if you want to hit the bulls-eye consistently, and want to to develop muscle-memory that you can rely on in high-pressure situations, higher-quality ammo makes a difference. Additionally, the  more expensive ammo will have fewer duds or “flyers,” which is not only bad during target competitions, it can be deadly in an emergency defensive situation. Remember the old adage, “You get what you pay for!” Make sure the quality of your defensive-carry ammo is as high as possible. Most people prefer high-power rounds for their stopping power, as well.

However, just because ammo is expensive doesn’t mean it is automatically what you really need. When testing ammo, be aware that each brand and type has different characteristics at varying distances. You will note a difference between 25 and 50 yards with regard to accuracy. Some low velocity ammo may not do well at 50 yards, regardless of the price. The video of Mr. Miculek above shows him using a very expensive and powerful Hornady ammo that contains a whopping 147 grains. He could never have hit his target at 1000 yards with a weaker alternative.


 Example Ammunition Test

For reference, the following reflects actual testing of what we indicated above is one of the best off-the-shelf target pistols on the market, the Ruger® Mark III Target Rimfire Pistol. The Ruger Mark III is a .22 long rifle semi-automatic pistol manufactured by Sturm, Ruger & Company. The Mark III is available in different configurations and weigh only from 31 to 45 ounces, and the barrels range from 4.75 to 6.88 inches. They are cost-effective, retailing for between $350 and $500.

The Ruger Mark III Target Pistol has a 5.5-inch barrel and weighs about 42 ounces. It has a list price of around $459 to $569, ranging from steel to blued finishing. It is an amazing .22-caliber handgun and is the most current incarnation of the Ruger, which has been a mainstay for 65 years.  With a little practice and with a steady hand, you can peg the bulls-eye at 50 yards.

The Ruger Mark III, Checkered Wood Grip, Blued, Alloy-Steel $509

During testing, we recommend using a bench rest and firing at 50 feet and at 25 and 50 yards. There is a limit to the distance you can fire these weapons. With .22 caliber long rifle (LR) ammo, an expert can aim a pistol with iron sights and be deadly accurate at 100 yards. However, the maximum effective accuracy for the caliber is limited by limited powder grain in the cartridge. It has been said that shooting a pistol at 100 yards is like lobbing a cannonball, “you must account for Kentucky windage and a two foot bullet caliber  drop.”

 


Even telescopic sights won’t compensate for low-power and low-caliber bullets

 

.22 Caliber Ammunition Tested

  • Remington 22 target (8 cents per round) provided excellent results at all distances, and was exceptional at at 50 yards, able to get 90 percent hits with tight grouping on a six inch target and one-inch grouping is easy at 25 yards.
  • Winchester 22 Super X (7 cents per round) was promising up to 25 yards, with multiple bulls-eyes and over 50 percent of the hits were in a 3 inch group.  The ammunition lost its consistency at 50 yards.
  • CCI Mini Mag (7.5 cents per round) was great at all distances, with bullet-over-bullet bulls-eyes up to 25 yards.

Remember that all handguns tend to have their own unique appetite for ammo.  Test your own weapon with different ammunition to determine which gives you the tightest groupings.

Ammunition Jamming

If you are going to spend time at a range practicing with a target pistol, it behooves you t0 take the time to gain basic knowledge of the internal mechanisms. Semi-automatic handguns, and especially .22 calibers, have a propensity to jam.  If you have an issue with jamming, you should first presume that the issue may be due to the ammunition. 95-percent of the time, the issue is not with the handgun and will be readily remedied by moving to higher-grain ammo (along with proper lubrication).  We like the Remington 40 grain for that reason alone.

P.S. If you know of a good Ruger Mark III ammo that is not listed above, please e-mail us so that we can test it too!

 

 

Woman Uses Her Gun To Ward Off Abduction

An Ohio woman who is licensed to carry a gun but had only recently started carrying one for protection put it to good use earlier this week.

Dinah Burns was out walking her dog, Gracie, on a path near an elementary school in Lancaster on Monday when two men approached her with a baseball bat and threatened to abduct her.

“Two gentlemen came out of the woods, one holding a baseball bat, and said ‘You’re coming with us,’” Burns told WBNS, adding that Gracie was little help in deterring the men.

Thankfully, Burns had something else for protection.

“I said, ‘Well, what do you want?,’ and as I was saying that I reached in to my pocket and slipped my gun out, slipped the safety off as I pulled it out,” Burns said.

“As I was doing that the other gentleman came toward me and raised the baseball bat. And, I pointed the gun at them and said, ‘I have this and I’m not afraid to use it.’”

The men backed off and left, Burns told the news station.

“I think if they’d gotten any closer, I probably would have fired,” she said, citing her concealed carry training which taught her “to get out of a situation, back out, get out of it as much as you can without having to discharge your firearm.”

“[I’m] very thankful that it turned out the way it did, and hope it doesn’t happen again, but I will be prepared,” Burns said. “Learn how to use a firearm for self defense! When you need immediate help, police are only minutes away!”

Ohio, which began issuing concealed carry permits in 2004, has experienced a massive surge of new concealed carry permit requests. According to an article from the Columbus Dispatch earlier this year, 96,972 new permits were issued in 2013 — a 50 percent increase from 2012. Permit renewals quadrupled over the same time span to 48,370.

Source: http://dailycaller.com/2014/08/30/woman-uses-her-gun-to-ward-off-abduction/

Handguns for Beginners

Shooting your first gun can be a confusing and nerve-wracking experience if you don’t know what to expect. Most gun ranges offer a variety of weapons for rent, ranging from handguns to assault rifles, but how do you choose among them?

At Allied, we recommend you start off with a handgun that is easy to aim and has little recoil, then work your way up. A .22 caliber semi-automatic pistol is a great starter gun. Loading ammunition into the magazine is relatively easy, guns of that size are lightweight, and they’re just plain fun to shoot.

Once you’re ready to try something new, go for a tried and true 9mm semi-automatic pistol, such as a Glock. Be sure to brace yourself. The recoil on a 9mm can be a surprise for someone not expecting it. However, these guns are still easy shooters, and with a little practice, you’ll get the hang of things.

Now, what could be more fun than a semi-automatic pistol? It’s time to get your cowboy hat on and try out a revolver! Start with a double action .38 Special. You can’t go wrong with Smith & Wesson, although their triggers can be stiff. Remember, the double action means you can shoot the gun with or without cocking it first. Try it both ways. You’ll likely find it’s easier to hit your target at first if the revolver is cocked.

Once you’ve mastered the smaller calibers, get ready for some real fun. Do you remember Clint Eastwood and his famous “Go Ahead, Make My Day” speech? That was a .44 Magnum he was using in the movie. Most gun ranges have them available for rent, but hold on to your hats. This revolver is not for wimps!

Main Safety Rules for Firearms

These are some basic rules for firearm use, regardless of the type. Follow these to avoid potentially deadly accidents:

  • Always treat a firearm as if it is loaded, with a bullet in the chamber and ready to fire.
  • Always keep your finger off the trigger until ready to fire.
  • Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction. Never point the muzzle at anything you do not wish to destroy.
  • Keep the weapon’s safety mechanism engaged until you are in a combat or firing situation.
  • Make sure the slide or bolt is locked open, or the cylinder is held open, and the chamber is empty when handing a gun to someone else.
  • Remove the magazine or bullets and check to be sure the chamber is empty before storing or transferring a firearm.

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