Thursday, February 07, 2013

"I did it. I bought a gun."

     It was one of my co-workers speaking, a man some years ex-military, politically conservative, the kind of guy whose neighbors probably figured already had a gun.

     Technically they were right; he'd bought a shotgun the previous month, figuring if the bans came down he'd at least have something.  He'd certainly been talking about buying a handgun for a couple of years.  As the weeks rolled by and the antis grew more strident, he'd called his Senators and even his Representative (at least for the record, his man in the House being Andre Carson, who is rather more the President's man) and was considering applying for a carry permit,* at which point he was going to need something to carry.

     I'd advised starting with a .22; sure, he'd shot a Beretta 92 in the service, but that was years ago.  A good .22 handgun is cheaper to shoot, less likely to inculcate a flinch in the self-taught shooter and there's a ready market for them when it's time to move up.  But they're marginal at best for self-defense and by the time my co-worker went to buy a gun, the gun store shelves were getting pretty bare: ammo, guns, all in small and dwindling supply.  Selling faster than supply.  He figured now was the time, and bought a name-brand polymer handgun in a grown-up caliber.

     So far, so good; he's a pretty big guy and plenty strong, with previous experience so his muscles know what to expect in the way of recoil.  Given the givens, it's a suitable choice.

     ...Except for one thing: he may not get much of a chance to shoot it.  While the store did still have some selection of good quality handguns, when it came to handgun ammo in popular calibers, the shelves were bare.  The range from .380 to .45ACP was empty.  If this goes on, collectors like Tam and to a lesser extent me will still have 7.62 Nagant, .32SWL, .38S&W or .44 Russian (etc.) for self-defense, but the guy with a shiny new 9 or a .45 might be scramblin' until the supply catches up to demand.

     There are problems with that.  Issues of self-defense aside. a guy with a Glock collecting lint in his sock drawer is not as apt to be politically engaged and he's certainly not in class at the range, learning good habits and marksmanship.

     Do what you can.  If you've got plenty saved back, spare a box for new shooters.  If you can find the time, help new shooters at the range.  Teach good gun-handling -- and where to look up the name of Congresscritters.

     We're getting an influx of new shooters.  Let's make sure they stay.  We need their voices and their votes.  I believe it's better to have plenty of allies than more ammo stockpiled than I can shoot in a year. You can only shoot each round once, but people vote year after year.

     Want to keep your guns?  Share your ammo.  Be a friend.
* Indiana's is the License To Carry Handgun, a shall-issue permit.  There is no requirement to conceal and no provision for open-carry without a permit: if you want to carry a loaded handgun in Indiana, you need a permit.  Already have one from your state?  Then you're good here; our State legislature understands the "full faith and credence" clause.


Ian Argent said...

That reminds me, I ought to find out whether the FLGunS (as opposed to the FLGamingS) has anything, given that in NJ you have to have papers to buy "handgun ammunition" (term undefined by statute)

BatChainPuller said...

I was talking to a new shooter who was having trouble finding ammo for his freshly minted plinkster. I told him he should be able to find .22 at Wal*Mart. He said "no" but he figured it was because it was a rarer form of .22, called "L-R" :-)
I did give him 100 rounds of my newly rare, but dwindling supply of .22 rounds. But only after I drilled him on the four rules and gave him a Boy Scout primer in weapon manipulation.

Ian Argent said...

Maybe I should hang loose on looking for a .22 conversion for the Soulless Austrian, then?

Bubblehead Les. said...

Well, I went Ammo Shopping yesterday. With the exception of 20 round boxes of Hunting Ammo at @ $1.00+ A ROUND, Trap and Skeet loads, .17HMR and some Oddballs like .300WSM, there's NOTHING, repeat NOTHING on the Shelves up here on the East Side of Cleveland.

And my Buddy the Surplus Dealer, who is plugged in to the Ammo Suppliers (he's allowed to sell Ammo in his store, just not Firearms, BTW), is being told that "Yeah, go ahead and Order, will AUGUST do for a Shipping Date?"

So as much as I'd like to help the New Guy out, I'm not sure I have enough to keep up my Practice Schedule (which is REALLY Light) w/o having to hit my Basic SHTF Load Out per Gun.

I recommend that you and Roomie take the time and see just how much you actually have in the House today, figure out how much Ammo is a MINIMUM for Your Defense and Practice needs, and scrounge up the rest ASAP.

Bottom Line: Hit the local Wal-Mart, found they had some .22LR in the Old School 50 round Boxes, and bought the Daily Limit of THREE Boxes.

And I was HAPPY to have found THAT MUCH.

rickn8or said...

Recently, I predicted that "the new currency of the realm would be double-shot bottles of Jack Daniels, with change given in .22LR."

I'm beginning to think I might have gotten it exactly bass-ackwards.

Not that THAT would be a first...

Loki1776 said...

Ian, they do exist. Finding them in stock is another matter.

For some time I've thought Gaston ought to introduce a model 40 in .22LR. That way people could have a "who's on first" situation when they wanted to refer to it. "Now was that a 22 in .40 or a 40 in .22?"

Anonymous said...

Look at older family owned hardware stores, like in small towns. I find them some good sources and in some case they have forgotten what they have. But normally when I can I will bye it by the case. The internet is useful at times, and I do like certain sites. ATB, good advice on sharing experience, knowledge and a bit of ammo.

Anonymous said...

I have always let new shooters burn up my ammo. It's just the cost of being part of gunnie culture. I give them a box of carry ammo when they get their CCW.

I also have a tradition of giving a PMAG to new evil black rifle owners. I have a lot of them, I mean mucho!

Over the last few months I trade 5.56 ammo for hand made guitar and some 9mm ammo for getting my horses shoed.

Screw you IRS!


Ian Argent said...

Loki: I've actually seen one of the American Arms kits for a Glock 17, though not recently. It was the "looking for one in stock" that I'm trying to decide if I want to do. At least they can be mail ordered, unlike a whole new gun.
And I'm pretty sure Tam did a while riff on the who's on first when the rumors of a Glock .22 reared their heads a couple years back, but Google fails me.

Craig M. said...

I was trying to start reloading a couple of months back and bought a cheap Lee D press and some dies for .223. I finally got around to finishing my first batch of 100 and went to buy more bullets, and now even projectiles are off the shelf for the foreseeable future, and almost impossible to find on the net.

Ajdshootist said...

Over here in the UK ammo is in short supply as well lucky i also reload for all my rifles and keep a fairly
good stock of conponents plus at the
moment im taking a rest from shooting
untill the winter has gone.

fast richard said...

I'm adequately supplied in some calibers for my current needs, but if the situation doesn't start to improve in several months I could be pretty short. Meanwhile I do have enough to share a little with the new shooters who seem to be appearing.

Pakkinpoppa said...

Report from Central Ohioland....

I think Rickn8er may be right...but I was buying ammo once the panic from the current fella getting the job ended last time...I believe I need to get more of the "airline" bottles of the hootch at some point.

But last could still find bricks of 22 here and there. It was just hunting stuff and no 9mm, .40, .45, 223/556, 762x39 to be when I had a shot I picked up a Marlin lever rifle in 3030 because...Meijer had it all the time. Now? Even that is spotty. The case for handgun ammunition is bare except for the occasional batch of Joke Bullets that arrive in groups of 2 or 3 in 9mm and 45...and are bought up. Even the 35 dollar a box .44 Magnums are gone now.

I thought about suggesting curtains to put over the glass doors until new stock arrived but thought better of it. Last week...a dozen boxes of 3030! I bought one.

I am sharing with others, though. A friend bought a shotgun and an SR22 last weekend and I supplied him with some shells, plus he'll be getting one of my bricks of 22. Everyone else I know has a decent supply.

BGMiller said...

Had a friend looking to buy his first ever gun a couple of weeks ago. Just a Ruger 10/22 to get started right. He found the exact one he wanted at the local Mountain of Geese and called me.
Says friend, "They've got the rifle but they don't have any bullets for it? And Walmart didn't have any either. I don't want to spend the money on the gun if I'm not gonna be able to use it. Any ideas?"

I told him to buy the rifle.
When he got home he found a brick of CCI Blaser nestled between the front and screen doors.

New shooters I've got covered.

I am cutting back a bit on my own shooting though.