Friday, November 30, 2007

Why we, as Americans, need the right to bear arms

One of the primary, original intents of the second amendment was for Americans to never be enslaved by their government.

It is often overlooked, but the right to bear arms was inherent in the founding father's understanding that an out-of-control government cannot be stopped if the people aren't able to defend themselves.

We see modern day examples of nations who limit or forbid gun ownership pushing ever further towards totalitarian rule, even if in the guise of democracy. Examples include Russia, who is forcing government workers to vote for the ruling party of Putin (and there are a lot of government workers thanks to government controlled schools, health care, and many other industries). Venezuela, where Chavez is attempting to become a de-facto dictator like his buddy Castro. China, where people are sent to "re-education" camps that don't agree with government policy. And let's not forget the non-governments who put pressure on people, like in the Mid-East, where terrorists are trying to intimidate everyone into turning away from freedom and towards Islamic-fascist states.

The point? Freedom is not the norm around the world. We enjoy it in the US more than nearly anyone else, and this is due in great measure to our ability to remove people from office who aren't doing their jobs. We do it with elections every few years, with impeachments and other governmental procedures in emergency situations, and with the right to bear arms when society breaks down. It's the last defense against government tyranny, and one that must not be ignored when debates such as the one in our nation's capital about legal gun ownership are raging .

Buckeye Firearms News

Supreme Court Will Hear D.C. Handgun Ban Case
Buckeye Firearms Association announces participation in case; filing brief in support of Mr. Heller
The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) has agreed to hear a case that will decide whether the District of Columbia can ban handguns - a move that could produce the most in-depth examination of the constitutional right to "keep and bear arms" in nearly 70 years.

Fred Thompson on Supreme Court decision to hear D.C. Gun Ban case
I've always understood the Second Amendment to mean what it says - it guarantees a citizen the right to "keep and bear" firearms, and that's why I've been supportive of efforts to have the D.C. law overturned.

Jim Irvine: Gun buybacks – what do they really accomplish?
Recently the city of Cleveland gave out $100 gas and grocery gift cards to anyone turning in a handgun. The anti-gun people (including the media) act like this is a great thing. The pro-gun people generally claim it is worthless. I’ll explain why it is dangerous.

Dick Martin: Ohio is facing a growing coyote crisis
Coyotes are making serious inroads into our small game population, not to mention other species. There's little question that they feed mainly on mice and other small rodents, since those are most available. So what can you do?

Hunters/Ohio Div. of Wildlife offer something to be thankful for
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife has launched a pilot grant program in the cities of Coshocton and Marietta in an effort to assist with the processing costs associated with donating venison to a food bank.

Chad D. Baus: Media planned to defy General Assembly on private records AGAIN
It has been interesting to watch the Ohio media's reaction to Attorney General Marc Dann's issuance of an opinion reiterating that a new state law does not allow journalists to copy the confidential, non-public information of concealed handgun license (CHL) -holders by any means.

News Talk Radio WHIO Special Investigative Report: Armed But Not Dangerous
In a special investigative report unlike that which gun owners are used to seeing from the mainstream media, Larry Hansgen, the host of Miami Valley's Morning News on AM 1290 & 95.7FM in Dayton, recently took a SimTrainer course, and followed up with a story about concealed handgun license holders, asking... Who are they? Why do they carry a firearm? and other information that is sure to interest and inform listeners across the state.

Tim Inwood: Media bias exposed in NBC Cincinnati undercover piece on ''gun show loophole''
If you had put your hand to your ear and listened to the East, you would have heard the presses going at the Brady Campaign as they put out press releases begging the media to begin to bang the drums calling for new gun control laws. Ever the obedient creature, the press obeyed. For the past several months I have noted shrill voices coming across the television and radio calling for much needed new gun control regulations.

(Another) Ohio CHL-holder protects own life when robbed
The Cleveland Plain Dealer recently reported that another Ohio concealed handgun license-holder was able to defend himself when his business was robbed. And the last line of the story deserves attention from legislators who have inexplicably stalled Ohio's Castle Doctrine legislation for the past several months.

John Fenton: Armed men ignore sign and rob UDF store near my home
A convenience store a few blocks from our home was robbed just before midnight last night by three masked men. The good news is that no one was hurt in the robbery. The most shocking part of this story is that ignored the small "No Weapons" signed displayed on the window next to the entrance door. It appears that the criminals, intent on committing armed robbery, didn't care about UDF's rights as a property owner.

Home invasion at UC

To: UC Community

From: Eugene R. Ferrara
Director of Public Safety/Police Chief

Early this morning the University of Cincinnati Polce Department was notified of a home-invasion robbery that took place at the University Park Apartments on Calhoun Street. The victim pursued the suspects outside of the apartments and was shot in the leg on the rear plaza outside University Park. A suspect was arrested on scene and the weapon recovered. The victim was transported to the hospital for treatment. Cincinnati Police are continuing the investigation.

If you have any information about these offenses please contact UC Police at 556-1111 or Crime Stoppers at 352-3040.

The purposes of these crime alerts are to notify the University community of incidents that may produce a risk so members of the community can take appropriate precautions and to request that anyone with information contact the local police.

The UC Police also have a "tip" line to receive information about criminal activity. That number is 556-COPS (2677).

*Hat tip to SW for the info

Thursday, November 29, 2007

CDNN Weekly Specials

Some good deals on Sigs and Berettas...

PRICES GOOD THROUGH Saturday December 1st AT 2:00PM CST!

Beretta 84
  • 380acp · Blue · 1-13rd Mag · Very Good Condition #BER84380 $339.99
Beretta 92D
  • 9mm · DAO · Blue · 1-15rd Mag · Very Good Condition #BER92DV $269.99
Beretta 92F
  • 9mm · Fixed Sights · 1-15rd Mag · Very Good Condition #BER92FE $299.99
Beretta 92FS
  • 9mm · Night Sights · 1-15rd Mag · Stainless · Case · Excellent Condition #BER92FSS $429.99
Beretta 96D Centurian
  • 40s&w · DAO · Night Sights · 1-11rd Mag· Very Good Condition #BER96CNS $269.99
Colt AR-15 HBAR 6601
  • .223 · 20" Competition Heavy Target Barrel · No Muzzle Brake · 800m Sight · 1-20rd Mag · 1 in 7 Twist · Very Good Condition #COLMT $789.99
Colt AR-15 HBAR 6700
  • .223 · 20" Competition Heavy Target Barrel · LE Marked · Muzzle Brake · 800m Sight · 1-20rd Mag · 1 in 7 Twist · Bayo Lug · 1-30rd Mag · Removeable Carry Handle · Very Good Condition #COLMT6700D $899.99
Glock 22
  • 40s&w · Early Style Frame · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Excellent Condition #GLO22B $339.99
Glock 22
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Early Style Frame · 1-15rd Mag · Very Good Condition #GLO22NEX $ 339.99
Glock 22
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Early Style Frame · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Excellent Condition #GLO22UM $349.99
Glock 22
  • 40s&w · Finger Groove & Rail · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #GLO22VE $349.99
Glock 37
  • 45 G.A.P · Factory Rebuild · Night Sights · 1-10rd Mag · Finger Groove & Rail · Excellent Condition #GLO37NSR $349.99
Glock 19
  • 9mm · Fixed Sights · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Marked Virginia Beach PD · Excellent Condition #GLOVBP $349.99
  • 9mm · 1-8rd Mag · Refinished · Tiny Pitts On Slide #HKPSPU $449.99
Ruger P89
  • 9mm · Night Sights · Stainless · 1-15rd Mag · Good Condition #RUG89S $219.99
SIG 220
  • 45acp · Night Sights · Rail · 1-8rd Mag · Very Good Condition #SIG220U $489.99
SIG 229
  • 40s&w · DAK · Night Sights · Rail · 1-12rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SIG22940S $449.99
SIG P6-225
  • 9mm · 1-8rd Mag · Blue · Case · Very Good Condition #SIGP225 $329.99
SIG 226
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Black Stainless · 1-12rd LE Mag · Very Good Condition #SIGUD22640BSNE $449.99
SIG 229
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Black Stainless · 1-12rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SIGUD22940BSS $429.99
Smith & Wesson 4006
  • 40s&w · Stainless · Fixed Sights · 1-11rd Mag · Good Condition #SMI104402 $299.99
Smith & Wesson 4013TSW
  • Shorty 40 · 40s&w · 1-9rd Mag · NO RAIL · Stainless · Very Good Condition #SMI148392 $329.99
Smith & Wesson 3913
  • 9mm · Night Sights · 1-8rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI3913US $319.99
Smith & Wesson 4006
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Stainless · 1-11rd Mag · Case · Excellent Condition #SMI4006SEL $349.99
Smith & Wesson 4006
  • 40s&w · Fixed Sights · Stainless · 1-11rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI4006UNS $299.99
Smith & Wesson 4013
  • 40s&w · Fixed Sights · Stainless · 1-8rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMI4013G $329.99
Smith & Wesson 4013TSW
  • Shorty 40 · 40s&w · NO RAIL · 1-9rd Mag · Case · Excellent Condition #SMI4013TSW $359.99
Smith & Wesson 4014
  • 40s&w · Blue · Fixed Sights · 1-8rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMI4014G $289.99
Smith & Wesson 4043
  • 40s&w · DAO · Stainless · 1-11rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMI4043G $249.99
Smith & Wesson 5906
  • 9mm · Stainless · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMI5906ADJF $299.99
Smith & Wesson 5906
  • 9mm · Night Sights · Stainless · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI5906NS $329.99
Smith & Wesson 5946
  • 9mm · DAO · Stainless · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI5946U $259.99
Smith & Wesson 59
  • 9mm · Blue · 1-14rd Mag · Good Condition #SMI59A $249.99
Smith & Wesson 5906TSW
  • 9mm · Night Sights · Rail · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Excellent Condition #SMI59TSW $389.99
Smith & Wesson 65
  • 357 Magnum · 4" Barrel · Marked w/# on Frame · NO CASE · Stainless · Good Condition #SMI65P $259.99
Smith & Wesson 910
  • 9mm · Marked w/# · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMI910VG $249.99
Smith & Wesson 6906
  • 9mm · 1-12rd Mag · Stainless · Good Condition #SMID11 $289.99
Smith & Wesson SIGMA SW40C
  • 40s&w · Night Sights 1-14rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMISW40CNSG $199.99
Smith & Wesson 64
  • 38Special · 4" Pinned Barrel · Matte Stainless · Case · Excellent Condition #SMI644HBGVG $269.99
Smith & Wesson SW99
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Frame Good Condition · Upper Very Good Condition · 1-12rd Mag #SMIP99G $299.99

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

You're one of nearly 100,000 Ohioans with a CHL

Recent reports put the number of Ohioans with CHLs at over 90,000, and fast approaching the 100,000 mark.

Carrying for self-defense is nothing to be ashamed of, and don't let anyone tell you that they don't know anyone who carries... after all, it is called CONCEALED carry.

Inside a CHL class (CH 9 news)

Monday, November 26, 2007

Careful where you carry - follow the law

Looks like the Akron city council president didn't review his CHL book from the atty general. He's being charged with a felony for bringing his carry gun into an airport in his carry-on bag.

Can't do that - if you want to fly with a gun, you must follow the airlines rules (typically unloaded, in an FAA-approved case, and declared in checked bagage).

Don't let this happen to you. Follow the rules, and make sure you KNOW the rules.

Ch. 9 tonight - "Who's carrying a concealed weapon"

Received a report from a former student that a report would air tonight at 5:30pm. Check it out, but remember to take whatever report comes out with a grain of salt. Media folks tend to not know the law, only what they're told.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Buckeye Firearms News

SB184: Sen. Steve Buehrer announces PROPONENT hearing on Castle Doctrine
A second committee hearing on SB184 has been scheduled for Wednesday, December 5th. The Criminal Justice Committee will field important testimony from supporters of the Castle Doctrine. If you are interested in testifying on the bill, contact Senator Tim Grendell, the Chairman of the Senate Criminal Justice Committee.

Ohio's Young Hunters Post Great Results During Special Two-Day Deer Hunt
Young hunters across Ohio again enjoyed success during the Fifth Annual Youth Deer-Gun Season. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife estimated 40,000 young hunters took to the state's fields and forests during the two-day season.

Supreme Court Postpones Announcement on D.C. Second Amendment Case
The Supreme Court's orders announced Tuesday, November 13, did not mention any action on District of Columbia v. Heller or on the related petition by the plaintiffs who were denied standing in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

John Longenecker: For Non Gun Owners: D.C. v. Heller and 2A In A Nutshell
I was so very pleased to join Bob Parks on his radio show last night, Outside The Wire, November 13th. We talked about gun bans and what personal weapons are all about. Thanks again for having me, Bob.

Senate Examines Link between HB71 Proponent, 'Domestic Terror' Group
It was a "nervous" Senate Agriculture Committee chairman who took continuing testimony on a bill that began nine months ago as dog fighting legislation but has since grown to include the related problem of cock fighting.

Disabled hunters enjoy day in the great outdoors
Nearly 50 disabled hunters were paired with guides during the 6th annual Wheelin' Sportsmen Event, an event that matches "able-bodied" volunteers with disabled hunters, enabling them to deer hunt on AEP property for two days.

Chad D. Baus: Drunk drivers' names off-limits to media, but not CHL-holders'
The latest examples of this discrimination against those who choose to exercise their Second Amendment right to bear arms comes direct from Columbus, Ohio, where Senators continue to allow journalists to access the private information about law-abiding citizens who obtain concealed handgun license holders and publish it on the Internet.

Friday, November 16, 2007

No, journalists can't copy a list of CHL names

Ohio legislature, in response to several media outlets printing/showing the list of CHL holders names, has changed the law. Now no journalist may copy the list, in any way (including hand-copying).

Buckeye Firearms News

Jim Irvine: Taking back their party
Republican gun owners have spent the better part of two decades frustrated by a party that has talked pro-gun while campaigning, but time and again acted anti-gun once in office.

Attn. Gen. Dann - Conceal Carry Names Limited to Reporters' ''Mental Processes''
The Strickland administration and the AG's office have gone on record in response to new questions over media access to names of conceal carry permit holders. Attorney General Marc Dann's opinion begins by confirming what Buckeye Firearms Association has been explaining for years, and what editor after editor at Ohio's major newspapers seem not to understand: under Ohio law, CHL records are confidential and non-public.

Rick Jones: Wouldn't it be sad?! Castle Doctrine and our Veterans
Wouldn't it be sad if one of our dedicated veterans were violently attacked, forced to defend themselves, and then treated as guilty until they could prove themselves innocent?

Tim Inwood: Presidential Politics and the Gun Issue
have been involved in Republican party politics for many years and I am also on the Republican Central Committee in Clinton County, Ohio. So I am going to offer some advice I hope my fellow Republicans will listen to.

Tim Inwood: Ignore the hoplophobes and pass Castle Doctrine reform now!
illiness in Ohio CCW law, you ask? Of course we in Ohio are still putting up with silliness. Sadly, when Ohio adopted its concealed carry law, our vapid former Governor Robert Taft and some in the State Legislature took the stance Ohio was breaking new ground, and in our brave new horizon of letting citizens defend themselves, we must take careful baby steps.

Fred Thompson talks guns in New Hampshire
Fred Thompson had a somewhat surreal day yesterday as he toured the nation's first primary state, dropping in to Nashua for a genteel early-morning "tea with the candidate," then spending the afternoon in a gun-making plant in Rochester.

Linda Walker: Will Your Gun Save your Life?
Out of nowhere, there he is! Five feet to your right is a common street thug running at you with a knife in his hand! It has immediately become apparent to you that he wants to cut you! What do you do?

Concealed carry could prevent rape
As a 26-year-old honors graduate, current student, and concealed handgun license holder, I found the editorial "No campus arms race" a personal insult. Everyone is entitled to an opinion in a forum of free and equal exchange of ideas, but I wish to rebut some of its main points.

Chris Chumita: What Are You Listening To Now?
In December of 2006, the Buckeye Firearms Association published an article about the growing number of pro-gun and pro-freedom radio shows, Internet shows, and podcasts. Since then we have seen even more shows become available, and they all try to bring attention to our fight to restore our Second Amendment rights.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Two spots freed up for this weekend's Personal Protection class!

If you are interested in attending this weekend's Level II Personal Protection class, please shoot us an email. We just had two people cancel, so we can get you in!

Email if you're interested. Details on our site (

Descent, cheap safe

We're often asked where to find a good, cheap safe. Harbor Freight has three on sale right now that are quite good.

One is a small, digital safe that can be easily mounted on a shelf in a closet. It's $19.99. It's not fireproof, but it is a good choice for a safe for your daily carry gun. Easy to get into, easy to hide, and nice and solid.

The second is larger and would be good for storing multiple handguns (with shelves, you could probably fit 8-10). It's about 2.5 feet tall and has a fireproof rating. It's $79.99. Very cheap for a bigger safe. You can mount that to the floor of your closet for quick access. It's also digital.

Finally, they have a middle option, suitable for 2-3 guns. It's $39.99, and is also digital.

Not sure when the sale ends, but all three would allow you to cheaply and easily store your guns in a safe manner. Check out your nearest Harbor Freight (one near Mt. Healthy, another near Eastgate, and one in Mason).

We typically recommend getting a safe that is mountable (can be screwed into place somewhere so it can't be easily stolen), steel (solid with at least two bolts to lock it up), and digital (for quick access). All three fulfill these requirements.

CDNN Weekly Specials


PRICES GOOD THROUGH Saturday November 17th AT 2:00PM CST!

Beretta 92D
  • 9mm · DAO · Blue · 1-15rd Mag · Very Good Condition #BER92DV $269.99
Beretta 96D Centurian
  • 40s&w · DAO · Night Sights · 1-11rd Mag · Very Good Condition #BER96CNS $269.99
Glock 22
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · 1-15rd Mag · Early Frame · Case · Good Condition #GLO22M $329.99
  • 9mm · Variant 3 · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Excellent Condition #HKUSP9A $469.99
  • 9mm · Variant 3 · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #HKUSPV $449.99
SIG P226
  • 9mm · Interarms Import · Case · 1-15rd Mag · Like New Condition · RARE!! #SIG226INT $499.99
SIG 225
  • 9mm · Wood Grips · 1-8rd Mag · Case · Excellent Condition #SIGUD2259BR $399.99
Smith & Wesson 4013TSW
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · No Rail · Stainless · 1-9rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI13E $349.99
Smith & Wesson 10
  • 38Special · 4" Pinned Barrel · Square Butt · Case · Good Condition #SMI178 $249.99
Smith & Wesson 4006
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Stainless · 1-11rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI4006EX $319.99
Smith & Wesson 4006
  • 40s&w · Fixed Sights · Stainless · 1-11rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI4006UNS $299.99
Smith & Wesson 4013
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Blue · 1-8rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #4013S&W $329.99
Smith & Wesson 4043
  • 40s&w · DAO · Stainless · 1-11rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI4043E $249.99
Smith & Wesson SIGMA SW40C
  • 40s&w · 1-14rd Mag · Case · Very Good Condition #SMI40CEX $199.99
Smith & Wesson 5943
  • 9mm · DAO · Stainless · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMI5943VG $ 249.99
Smith & Wesson 5944
  • 9mm · Night Sights · DAO · Blue · 1-15rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMI5944E $239.99
Smith & Wesson 59
  • 9mm · Blue · 1-14rd Mag · Original Box · Marked SCRPD · Very Good Condition #SMI59G $299.99
Smith & Wesson SIGMA SW40C
  • 1-14rd mag · Case · Good Condition #SMI620012 $199.99
Smith & Wesson 65
  • 357 Magnum · 4" Barrel · Marked Wayne County Sheriffs w/# · Factory Case · Matte Finish · Excellent Condition #SMI65TDC $299.99
Smith & Wesson 910
  • 9mm · 1-15rd Mag · Marked w/# · Case · Good Condition #SMI910VG $249.99
Smith & Wesson/Walther SW99 Compact
  • 40s&w · Decocker · Test Fired · 1-8rd Mag #SMI99C $369.99
Smith & Wesson CS9 Chief Special
  • Ultra Compact · 9mm · Stainless · 1-7rd Mag · Case · Good Condition #SMICS6 $289.99
Smith & Wesson 6906
  • 9mm · Stainless · 1-12rd Mag · Case · Average Condition #SMIFSF $249.99
Smith & Wesson SW99
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · Rough Frame · Very Good Slide · 1-12rd Mag #SMIP99G $299.99
Smith & Wesson 64
  • 38Special · 4" Pinned Barrel · Matte Stainless Finish · Case · Excellent Condition #SW644HBGVG $269.99
Walther P990
  • 40s&w · Night Sights · DAO · 1-12rd Mag · Good Condition #WAL990V $299.99

Concealed carry - a woman's best defense

One common misconception is that women don't carry. That's completely untrue, and is demonstrated every time we hold a class and several women show up (sometimes even outnumbering the men).

The fact is, most women are smaller and physically weaker than most men. Therefore they are at a disadvantage when it comes to defending themselves. As John Browning said, a gun is the ultimate equalizer.

Along these lines, many women in college want the right to defend themselves. This is an excellent example of someone who wishes to have that right to prevent being attacked.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Better not shop at Eastgate or Northgate malls

The FBI is saying that terrorists may attack a shopping mall this holiday season, specifically in Chicago and LA.

Best to not shop at Eastgate or Northgate malls, both have anti-CHL signs.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Locked & Loaded: Why Distance Matters (and we shoot at 25 yards)

.:.This article is part of Advanced Shooting's Locked & Loaded series.:.

Many people ask us – why do you take new shooters to a range that is 25 yards? Most classes take new shooters to shoot at 15 feet.

We’ve found that it’s easier to teach someone how to shoot a handgun at a longer range than a shorter range. I know that sounds counterintuitive – but anyone can hit a target 15 feet away just by pointing at the target. That isn’t learning how to shoot, it’s learning how to squeeze.

What about the fact that most self-defense shootings happen at close range?
That’s very true – most self-defense shootings happen at less than 10 feet. Here’s the rub, though, almost none of those shootings are aimed shooting. Someone attacks you and you pull your gun and unload. No sights are used, no stance is taken, even the grip is probably all wrong. And trigger squeeze? Please – it’s fight or flight, not a lovely day at your local gun club.

So this means that shooting at short distances, in essence, doesn’t matter. Sure there are specific techniques that can be practiced at short range such as point shooting, drawing from concealment, two and three-shot groups, etc. but you can’t practice those at your local range, anyway. They’re just not safe to do around other people. If you want to practice these things, buy a simulation gun and do it in your basement. Not at the range, where it’ll just get you banned for life.

Everything important you need to learn about shooting a pistol is done better at longer ranges, not shorter ones. At 10 feet, do you really take your time on the trigger? Do you really stand the way you should, hold the gun the way you should, and truly practice marksmanship? For most people, the answer is a clear NO.

So what’s a good distance to practice at?
Try 25 yards. Most public outdoor ranges are set up for this distance. For a new shooter, it may seem like a million miles away. In fact, you can’t see most of the holes in the paper at this distance. But it forces you to practice the basics.

Bring a binoculars and your patience. It takes time to hit the paper, much less hit the center of the target. Practice the basics. Check your stance and your grip, squeeze that trigger slow and take your time. Don’t get frustrated – a good group at 25 yards can be hits on the paper at first. You’ll improve with practice, and each time you shoot you can be confident that you are improving as a shooter, not just blasting rounds at a piece of paper that you can almost touch.

So why practice at all?
Because for a civilian being ready for a defensive situation is about being comfortable with your gun. Knowing its operation, knowing its sights, and knowing how it feels when it goes off.

Let’s be realistic here – in the real world, when you’re using your gun for self defense, you don’t have the luxury of ear or eye protection, you aren’t calm and steadied, you don’t have a pretty orange dot in the center of the bad guy to aim at. It’s heated, loud, and scary. So you need to be completely comfortable with the operation and use of your gun to successfully defend yourself. Being able to hit the center of the bullseye at 10 feet has nothing to do with that. Being a good shot does – and if you can shoot well at 25 yards, you can sure as heck defend yourself at five feet.

Locked & Loaded: My Carry Gun(s)

.:.This article is part of Advanced Shooting's Locked & Loaded series.:.

It’s not rare that someone asks an NRA Instructor – “What gun do you carry?”

There are really a couple of issues to consider when choosing your carry gun. These include the caliber and the gun’s features. Before we get into that, though, I’d like to speak on having multiple carry guns, for a moment.

More than one?
Personally, I have five (yes, five, don’t give me the look my wife does) carry guns. Why more than one? Well, because I carry to different places, wearing different clothes, and I want a backup. Not a backup gun (meaning a second gun), but a carry gun in case another gun has a problem. Case in point – one of my carry guns is right now not working properly. It’s a Glock 36, and the slide is locking back early on a regular basis. I think I’ve figured out why (a bad spring on the slide release), but I haven’t fixed it, yet.

If you have a gun that’s malfunctioning, you shouldn’t carry it. Murphy’s law says it’ll malfunction when you need it – and therefore, you should have another gun to back it up.

Now that we’ve covered why I have multiple carry guns, let’s talk about caliber.

As an instructor, I would not recommend carrying anything smaller than a 38 special. Statistics show that anything smaller takes many (more than four or five) shots to be effective in a typical self-defense situation. If you go with anything smaller, make sure you put hollow-points in your gun and practice often, because you’ll need a very well-placed shot to stop someone.

Understand one thing – a civilian self-defense shooting looks nothing like a police or military shooting. First and foremost, it’s an unorganized, super-fast mess. Most civilian shootings happen at less than 15 feet and in less than 10 seconds. This means that there isn’t much time for the fundamentals we push in our Basic Pistol classes like stance, grip, and sight alignment.

What does this mean? That a big bullet is a good thing, because odds are you won’t have the things you need to get off a good shot – a solid stance, a good grip, and aligned sights.

The best carry calibers, in my opinion, are 45 ACP and 40 S&W in an auto-loader, and 357 magnum and 38 special in a revolver. There are a few more exotic cartridges that are very effective such as 10mm and 44 special, but finding bullets is difficult and shooting them is expensive, so I typically recommend people stick with the more popular calibers.

I have three 45 ACP carry guns, one 40 S&W and one 38 special. All big bullets, all with hollow-points (because if push comes to shove, I don’t want to have to shoot more than a few times).

Make sure it’s safe
First and foremost, the gun has to be safe. I prefer a manual safety on all my carry guns. You aren’t going to find this on a revolver, so invest in a good holster that will cover the trigger completely. I also like guns with backup safeties, like firing pin blocks and double-action configurations. Double-action guns aren’t “cocked” all the time and almost always have a lot of trigger creep before they go off.

Don’t become another story of someone whose gun went off by accident. Make sure your gun is safe, first and foremost, before you look at any other feature.

The guns and their features
The gun I grab nearly everyday to carry is a Glock 36. Well, until it started being a jerk, that is. I typically carry “inside the pants.” In other words, I put the gun in the front of my pants under an untucked shirt. In order to carry like this, I need to either have an inside-the-pants holster or a clip on the gun that holds it in place. Don’t ever try to carry a gun inside-the-pants without some sort of retention device, or the gun will just end up on the falling down your pants leg and potentially hurting someone.

The Glock 36 is small, light-weight, and is a 45 ACP, a very effective self-defense caliber. It’s also a single-stack magazine, which means it’s thin. Thin is important if you carry inside-the-pants. A bulge in the front of your pants is an instant sign that you are carrying or have a colostomy bag, and I don’t want to give off either impression.

It’s an effective gun that’s easy to use. The only problem is it doesn’t have a manual safety. So I added a trigger safety from SiderLock®. I also added a clip so I can carry it without a holster from, my preferred way to carry as it’s much more comfortable and convenient.

Right now the Glock is on the backburner. The slide has been locking back early a lot lately. It might be due to the things I’ve added to it or some other issue, I’m not sure yet. I’ve seen several Glock 36’s with slide-lock issues, so it didn’t surprise me when it started happening (though it did tick me off). Once I get it fixed, I plan to keep carrying it, but I won’t carry a gun that’s not 100%.

My second carry gun is a Taurus PT140 40S&W. This gun is everything the Glock is, only a fraction thicker and not quite as comfortable to shoot. It’s also a 40 S&W, not quite as good for stopping, but still very effective. I’ve only had this gun a short time but have become quite accustomed to it.

If you decide to get a Taurus like this, make sure you get the new “Pro” model. The trigger is significantly better than the standard Millennium trigger. Beyond that, it’s a double-action (long trigger stroke, good for safety), has a manual safety, and has a good capacity (10 in the mag, one in the chamber).

I highly recommend this gun, and Taurus stands behind their guns better than most. I will say they’re not the 25-yard super-accurate gun many want, but they’re good for carry. I’ve also installed a carry-clip on this gun, and find it to be very good for easy, comfortable carry.

Carry gun number three is a Para Ordinance CCW 45ACP. A bit heavier than the Glock and Taurus, and also a bit longer (4 ½ inch barrel), but still very thin and very easy to carry. Again, that big 45 slug. It’s a double action with a manual safety. It also feels like a standard 1911, which is a big plus when actually pulling the trigger. The other thing I really like about this gun is it has a grip safety, as is standard on a 1911. More safety for everyday carry is always a good thing.

The only reason the Para isn't a daily carry gun is due to its weight. This guy has a steel frame, and weighs a good six or eight ounces more than the other two guns. Not uncomfortable, but you definitely know it's there.

The fourth gun I often carry is a Kimber 1911. It’s a full-size 1911 with a carry clip. Not great when I’m not wearing a coat, but if I had to trust my life with any gun on this list this would be the one. It is utterly accurate in a big caliber.

One thing to note about this gun is that it is a single-action, which makes a lot of people nervous about carry. Kimber does have a feature (a few other brands do as well) where you can put the hammer down safely. This allows you to carry with a bullet in the chamber but with the hammer uncocked. The procedure upon unholstering this gun is to pull back the hammer and squeeze the trigger. Uncocked, this is about the most safe gun there is in the bunch.

But it’s big and heavy – five inch barell, full grip and 45 ounces fully loaded. So this gun is for when I feel like carrying something big and have the clothes to allow it.

Finally, the last of the bunch is a Taurus snub-nose 38 special Titanium. It’s super-light and small, but those features do have their drawbacks. First, it kicks like a mule because the gun doesn’t absorb nearly any of the recoil. Second, it only holds five rounds. This isn’t a big deal, but because it’s only a 38 odds are I’d have to use nearly every bullet in a self-defense situation. Either way, it’s a good choice when I need something quick, light and reliable.

That’s the List
So that’s the list. What do all of these have in common? I know they’re all reliable (except for the Glock until I get it fixed), they are of a substantial caliber (38 special or greater), and I’m comfortable concealing and shooting every one. These are really your main points to stick by.

If you have any questions about what carry gun might be right for you, or stories about your search for the perfect carry gun (or guns), email us at We’d love to hear and share your stories!

.:. UPDATE (Feb '08) - I've fixed the Glock 36. Turns out I screwed up when I put together the trigger assembly. After I fixed it, she's back up and running like a charm. I did forget how hard the thing kicked, though. That 45 slug out of a small frame gun is a beast!! .:.

Locked & Loaded: Springfield XD

.:.This article is part of Advanced Shooting's Locked & Loaded series.:.

If you put a manual safety on this gun and I just might elope.

The Springfield XD is perhaps one of the best values out there in an auto-loader. It’s easy to take care of, accurate, easy to shoot, and has a trigger that beats a Glock any day of the week.

Speaking of Glocks, it’s very similar. The takedown is close, the design is close, even the “combat Tupperware” feel is nearly the same. The major differences – it has a much better trigger and a grip safety, two things I find to be especially important, and is about $100 cheaper.

When you buy a new XD you get two magazines, a holster for the gun, a holster for the extra mag, a cleaning brush, and a nice case. Everything you need to get started with the gun.

Past that, you get a lifetime warranty from Springfield. Anybody who’s owned guns for a while knows that’s a big deal – especially considering the costs to repair a gun can sometimes approach the cost of a new one.

We have a 40 S&W and a 9mm ported version of the XD for the classes. Feel free to sign up for a class and try them out. We highly recommend them, and would suggest checking out a sale from Bass Pro Shops or Shooter’s Supply in Loveland.

Great guns for a great price (typically less than $500). And we haven’t had either malfunction, yet.

The only issue I have is a lack of a manual safety. We know why they do this – many police organizations and military forces don’t want a safety to mess with a simple gun. But for carry, a manual safety is necessary, especially if you carry with a carry-clip or with a holster that doesn’t cover up the trigger guard.

Nevertheless, I do not hesitate recommending this gun to new and experienced shooters. Give it a try!

.:. UPDATE (Jan '08)- We love this gun so much, we just bought a third - a 45 ACP model. Long live the XD! .:.

.:. UPDATE (April '08) -
Springfield has added an optional thumb safety! Now it's PERFECT!!

Know your gun, holster it and be careful

This guy's gun went off when he put his coat on the back of his chair. Make sure to safety your gun, and keep it so the trigger is not exposed.

Carrying for protection is great, but an accident can leave you hurt or worse.

This is how "shall-issue" should work

This attorney was fighting to get back his concealed carry license after it was denied. Turns out he's a scum-bag who has threatened several people, and was even caught on tape hitting a woman.

This is how "shall-issue" is supposed to work. When you have something in your past (such as a tendency towards violence, a conviction of some kind, etc.) it should be denied.

Does that mean he won't carry a gun? No. But at least he'll be breaking the law when he does.

Monday, November 05, 2007

New gun for classes!

We've had a lot of people ask if we had a Taurus Millennium, and if they could try it during range time of our CHL, Personal Protection, or Pistol Marksmanship classes.

Until today we'd have to say no. Now we have a Taurus PT140, 40 S&W pistol for use in our classes! Thanks to Shooter's Supply in Loveland (513.683.2911) for helping us acquire it for a reasonable price!

As always, all students have access to our over 15 handguns for use at the range during class. Just let us know what you want to shoot, and we'll let you know if we have one available.