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One Gun Survival Set

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by Legion489, Dec 26, 2015.

  1. Legion489

    Legion489 Shining the Light of Truth

    Some Thoughts on the One Gun Survival Choice
    Posted September 21, 2015 in Shooting, Survival by Dr. John with 22 Comments

    Budgets are tight these days. That remains the case despite the so-called good economic news coming from WH reports. Accordingly, not everyone can afford a multi-gun survival arsenal. So if for now you can only buy and support one gun for survival and prepping, what should it be?

    As I work on another approach to survival weaponry presenting the best three-gun options for prepping, it occurred to me that might not be realistic for some. Under those circumstances where some cash strapped families cannot afford the expense right now of purchasing two or three guns but still want some security and self-defense coverage, what would be the best choice?

    This makes for a really tough decision, and it may boil down to personal preference for the type of firearm a person is most comfortable using. If I had to choose only one from the three choices of a handgun, rifle, or shotgun, it is easy for me to leave the rifle out of the mix. Now the issue becomes: which is the better solo choice, a pistol or a shotgun?

    A handgun is decidedly easier to wield either from inside a home or even from inside a vehicle. Learning to shoot a handgun, pistol, or revolver takes training and lots of practice to be proficient enough to be effective. Dispatching a single projectile at the single pull of the trigger demands much greater skill at gun handling for precision accuracy.

    Other pluses for the handgun choice is the relative ease of reloading. You can keep additional magazines on hand pre-loaded and ready or even have some speed loaders ready to reload a double action revolver. A handgun is also easy to conceal. It can be hidden under a pillow on the bed or couch. It can slide beside the seat in your vehicle. It is simple enough to keep one housed in a suitable holster on your hip under your shirt or in open carry. The handgun makes a good choice.

    Then, the shotgun (once learned to load and shoot) is a formidable weapon. It exits multiple shots of various sizes. An open pattern explains its nickname, the scattergun. It may be more cumbersome to use inside the house and very difficult from inside a vehicle.

    So, only one gun? I vote going with a handgun, a pistol in particular. Pick one you can handle well and shoot better.

    Please find the original article here: Some Thoughts on the One Gun Survival Choice - AllOutdoor.com
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 27, 2015
  2. DLConcepts

    DLConcepts Monkey

    Obviously situational, but here goes.
    If I can reach my BOL: Ruger 10/22.
    No chance of reaching the BOL/Urban environment: Pistol
    Bugging In: Shotgun
    Overall If I had one gun to grab, never coming home again, and good chances of reaching my BOL, ruger 10/22. Most rounds/mags, easy to procure game, and a very important factor....quiet.
    This is only factoring in the firearms I have on hand at the moment. I do not own an AR-15, otherwise that would the top choice.
  3. AxesAreBetter

    AxesAreBetter Monkey++

    Glad that is a choice I have not had to make.
    Starting from scratch? I would always go with a rifle.
    Dunerunner, UncleMorgan and Tikka like this.
  4. Xocjm

    Xocjm Monkey

    I am a Veteran and have many friends still active and one thing I have heard over and over is the only purpose for a pistol is to get you back to your rifle.
  5. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Actually, the original reason (iirc) was to shoot your own horse, should you ever get thrown and were being dragged. They were called "horse pistols" and the holster was on the saddle, to be within reach.
    Farmers started carrying them as a lighter, means of self protection, while working the fields.
    Dunerunner, UncleMorgan and Xocjm like this.
  6. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    Heh. Fat lot of good hanging one on the saddle will do when you are tossed and dragging. Did I wuz to guessing, I'd say they are called "horse pistols" 'cause it took a horse to carry them.

    The arguments over what is the purpose of a handgun will go on as long as there are chevvies, fords and dodges to argue about. Lots of mil types will say it's to fight to your long gun, and that may actually be true in some settings. (Have to say, the only scenario that occurs to me is an attack on a mess hall with a rifle rack by the door.) Not for my purposes, and as well not for lots of others, it is strictly for defense in areas where open carry of a long gun is ill advised.

    Ah, well, YMMV of course.
  7. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    Although a shotgun has many positives; its weakness is they are slow to reload. Unless it is a Saiga or other with magazines.
    Tully Mars, UncleMorgan and VisuTrac like this.
  8. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    Good guess.

    The most famous horse pistol was the Colt Walker; it was big, heavy and problematic. Definitely, a lot better to let the horse carry it. Another source of the name meant powerful enough to kill a horse.

    Some horse pistols were single shot with flint ignition. Harper's Ferry introduced a cap and ball Horse pistol.
    The Harper's Ferry Horse Pistol
    Tully Mars, UncleMorgan and Ganado like this.
  9. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Last edited: Dec 27, 2015
    Tully Mars and UncleMorgan like this.
  10. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    Yup, those are the flint ignition I mentioned; the Harper's Ferry was a "cap and ball." Almost all of them have hefty price tag.
    UncleMorgan and kellory like this.
  11. Legion489

    Legion489 Shining the Light of Truth

    The Walker pistol was HUGE, not sure of weight off hand, but four or five pounds. THAT is why you had a pair of them hung across the saddle horn, you couldn't wear them and walk. Other big pistols were the same, too big to carry on your person. They were not "horse pistols" because they could kill a horse, which of course they could, but because the HORSE carried them. Custer shot his horse in the back of the head during a buffalo hunt (it was popular to run buffalo and shoot them with pistols) and the bull turned and ran at Custer and then stopped and turned and ran off. Elmer Kieth said that he carried a heavy pistol ON HIS BELT to shoot the horse if he was dragged (which he did, which did happen, which he then did), but he wore it on his person, not hung on the saddle.

    The reason you carry your pistol on your person it so fight your way back to your rifle you left somewhere else. In a house, you might not HAVE a rifle when needed or be able to use one in cramped quarters if you did.

    More later.
  12. Witch Doctor 01

    Witch Doctor 01 Mojo Maker

    I always figured a Pistol was used for self defense because it was better than a Knife, club, hands, had better reach than a spear /axe most of the time, and took less time to train than a bow...
    Tully Mars likes this.
  13. AxesAreBetter

    AxesAreBetter Monkey++

    Pistols were originally a close range weapon the elite fired from horseback into blocks of infantry armed with matchlocks or pikes. It was simply the easiest thing to maneuver and reload on horseback, at a time when belt space was allotted to sword and dagger. It was a totally offensive weapon, that later generations turned into a PDW for body guard duty (like the Musketeers).

    It was the Texas Rangers that made the revolver famous. The natives evolved tactics to cause the white man to waist there shots with muzzleloader, then swarm over them before they could reload. The Rangers just happened to find an abandoned crate of Colt Patersons at a way station, and commandeered them when the owner never showed. It proved itself in Injun fighting, since they would charge you after your first 1-3 shots, and you would still have another 3-5 shots left to fire when they were up close and in the open.

    By the mid1600's, the big bada$$ horse pistol had evolved into the belt models, which were smaller, and certainly by the Seven Years/French and Indian, anybody with even the slightest professional reason to carry one, carries at least one, but still with hand weapons as the expected main battle weapons in most fights.

    The Walker, designed by Mr. Walker of the Rangers, was a design overhaul where the military unit went to the manufacturer with design needs, and had them met. I know that Walker died wearing them in belt holsters...
    Tikka and kellory like this.
  14. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

  15. AxesAreBetter

    AxesAreBetter Monkey++

    Not a problem. Oh,
    One of the big reasons for bodyguards using them as a PDW is that within a few decades of the invention of the pistol, an assassination attempt with one was attempted.
  16. duane

    duane Monkey++

    Was at a Texas Ranger small museum in the 1960,s and they had an original set of Walker Colts and the stuff that went with them. Each trooper carried two on the saddle and 2 spare cylinders as I remember. The standard load out at that time was 1 rifle and a couple of single shot pistols. When they were attacked in one of the famous early battles, they retreated to a buffalo wallow, laid their horses down and got behind them. The attackers planned on receiving about 12 shots total, 9 at close range and the retreating survivers never did figure out where the unexpected 60 to 70 shots came from.

    That said the best survival weapon is probably a 22 semi rifle. That is however not a personal defense weapon and which weapon you wish to for defense is almost totally dependent on the situation that you wish to use it in. Every day carry for a car would be a pistol, but for a prison guard it would probably be a shotgun and in modern combat either a M-4 or a selected sniper rifle.
  17. AxesAreBetter

    AxesAreBetter Monkey++

    The best survival weapon is almost certainly a shotgun, from a purely effectiveness standpoint. The .22 is probably the cheapest and most packable in quantity however.
  18. stg58

    stg58 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+ Founding Member

    There are many good choices noted on this thread.
    The Savage Model 24 has always been one of my favorites .30-30/12 Gauge, 22LR/.410 & .223 Rem/12 Gauge one in the trucks at all times.

    .22LR/20 Gauge
    .22WMR/20 Gauge
    .22 Hornet/20 Gauge
    .222 Rem/20 Gauge
    .223 Rem/20 Gauge
    .30-30/20 Gauge
    .357 Mag/20 Gauge
    .22 Hornet/12 Gauge
    .222 Rem/12 Gauge
    .223 Rem/12 Gauge
    .30-30/12 Gauge

    No longer made but Savage makes the model 42 now 22LR/.410 & .22WMR/.410
    Savage Arms

    Savage Model 24 - Gun Review
    Everything You Want To Know About the Savage 24 Combination Rifle and Shotgun - Wide Open Spaces
    Beartooth Bullets > Tech Notes > Savage 24 Over-Under Combination Guns
  19. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    The 22lr/ 410 over and under is the gun every Hunter in my family learns to hunt with. It is what lead to a interest in the M6-scout to begin with.
    stg58 likes this.
  20. AxesAreBetter

    AxesAreBetter Monkey++

    I hate the 42. It is designed and marketed as a NRA approved training tool for young shooters, not as a survival tool. The Chiappa models are MUCH better looking for an over under survival tool, IMO.

    I would love to have a good rifle/shotgun combo.
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