Thursday, January 22, 2009

SHTF: One Gun

The topic of firearms and survival 'post-TEOTWAWKI' is a fine topic of conversation and a recurring theme. With the recent change of direction in political winds, it would be best that we all consider our options for firearms and their immediate procurement.

Whether our situation leaves us on foot, away from home, or simply travelling light, the question comes up frequently, "If you could have one gun which would you choose?".

Pistol? Rifle? Shotgun? Battle Rifle? Exotic? Common?

First up, I have some ground rules..

One gun means one gun.
No interchangeble barreled shooting irons..
Not "one handgun" AND "one long gun".

Just one gun. That's it.

Let's consider our options and variants. You can have your opinion on your blog or feel free to comment on mine.

Handgun -

There are some "pros" to choosing a handgun over a long gun.

A handgun can be concealed in clothing.
A concealed weapon is less likely to draw attention.
A conceald weapon is more likely to avoid exposure to elements.
In a close fight, a handgun can be as effective as a rifle or shotgun. Especially, if combat is hand to hand or if the assailent manages to "get the junp on you" up close.
A handgun weighs less - big factor if on foot and traveling light.
Less weight in gun means the potential of carrying more ammunition.
A handgun can be kept close while sleeping, can be fired with one hand while the other hand is used for eating, checking gear, etc.

If a handgun were my only choice, I would go with either...

A 9 MM semi auto, either of these two would work.

9MM is one of the most commone handgun rounds which means I stand a better chance of finding, obtaining, buying more ammunition down the road.
9's are favored by law enforcement, gangbangers and everyone (left) in between. Again, better chance of resupply.
A nine milimeter has a decent carrying capacity of ten or more rounds in a standard magazine. That means ammo ready to use in the gun.

If a revolver was my choice, there would only be one for me..

Ruger Blackhawk in .357


Reliable mechanics, will not jam or break down.
Can chamber .357 OR .38.
Simple to use and clean.
Makes a fine club if neccessary.
Single action wheel guns are cool! (not a great reason, but works for me).

OK, on to the long gun.. rifle in particular

My considerations for a long gun made this a tough choice. I want hardiness, but I also want something accurate, and something easy to feed. Nothing worse than having a filet minon demanding partner when the rest of the world is eating dog meat.

My choice for long gun in the rifle catergory goes to .... the AR15


The AR15 fires .223 - lightweight and accurate.
.223 is used by military and police, should be availble via purchase, looting or recovery.
The AR15 uses 10,20 and 30 round magazines. Means more ammo in the rifle ready to use.
The AR15 is widely deployed making spare parts easier to obtain.
If I was in some other part of the world, I might choose an AK variant for all these same reason. But I am in here in the US.

Long gun - Shotgun

My preferred weapon of choice. I will make it simple, there are two choices for me..

A shotgun can fire slugs, buckshot or smaller loads for hunting making it a true multiple gun.
12Ga ammunition can be found everywhere, even in most department and big box stores.
12Ga is used by military and police.
Most families who have a gun in the house will have a 12Ga (guess, but its a good one).
12Ga is simple to use, clean and rugged.
Even if the tube underneath breaks, single loads can still be manually loaded.

So for me, the 12Ga shotgun, in a Remington or Mossberg configuration, is my choice for One Gun in the post-SHTF world.

Your mileage may vary and of course, feel free to comment.. Please use your manners.


Anonymous said...

How did you arrive at only one gun? Whats the point of thinking along these lines?

Anonymous said...

The military does not use .223 Remington, they use NATO 5.56x45mm. I know it sounds nitpicky, but the NATO round is rated to higher pressures than the .223. This can be very dangerous if you start feeding 5.56 into a cheap AR-15 whose chamber isn't rated for that pressure. If you want to use both 5.56 and .223 in your AR, make sure the chamber is rated for 5.56. If you aren't sure, call the manufacturer.

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