On Target

Call me sentimental, or maybe reflective, but I thought this would be a fitting title to a fitting subject for an end-of-the-year article.

As each year comes to a close, we tend to look back, re-evaluate, regroup and then project a new goal, a new vision, for the future. success4As I was thinking about this, I couldn’t help noticing how perfectly target practice related to and coincided with New Year’s Resolutions. You have a projected target, it’s clear, visible, and seems quite attainable. You set your sights and take aim. And just as it is with resolutions and goals, we don’t always hit the mark. But instead of getting discouraged and giving up, we stop, pause for a moment of reflection and study where, how and when we went wrong. Then we try again.

Without diligence, we admit defeat. We win in the moments when we just can’t do it anymore, when we feel like giving up, and yet we keep going. success2Just like with athletics or anything else. You don’t win when you’re confronted with an opponent, you win when you pushed ahead back on that dusty range when your hands hurt and you just weren’t hitting the mark. If you put you head down, take a breath, and try again now, you’ll win, later. It’s giving it your all, even when it feels like you’re not going anywhere. It’s the same way with life. It’s those days when you have trouble getting out of bed and doing the next thing, and yet you still do it and give it all you got, that you reach your goals. The successes are built on the backs of the hard times.

Point two, is the target itself. It is important that our targets are well defined so we can know where we are aiming. The best targets I’ve seen are neon colored. They are clear and bold, and most importantly, it’s easy to see where you’ve hit them. This makes them rewarding to practice with because you can see your progress. As we get more surgical in our shooting, they have upgraded targets that have the major organs outlined on them, so an individual can aim for certain points and practice fine tuning her placement. They also let you know what sort of damage you are doing. This also coordinates with making goals in life. Don’t make generalized goals. Set up clear, outlined, and attainable goals that you can knock out on the way to reaching the bulls eye. It is easy to get discouraged when we can’t see the progress in our striving. As time goes by and you begin to accomplish your goals, make bigger, more detailed ones that have greater and greater impacts. It all adds up. Small personal goals, just like plinking at the range, slowly grows to more focused training and goal setting. Gradually work up. The habits we build now, will be what we fall back on in time of need.

Something else to think about is stance. What sort of platform or foundation are we working from? Are we standing firm? This is a little hard to communicate, so bear with me. When you are practicing at a range, you need to have a secure foundation. As you progress through training, and start getting more advanced, you will find that you no longer are shooting from a literal secure platform, but yet, no matter what position you are shooting from, you will be able to make you platform secure. For example: When I started my first tactical class, I was starting with a clean slate. I’d never done any shooting or practicing before. For the first couple hours, I was practicing securing my platform. I was being trained in the habit of having a tight hold on my gun, keeping my balance, being in control of my body and my weapon. As we progressed to shooting on the move, shooting from the ground, etc. I found that since I had started with a secure foundation, and formed it into a habit, I could now take control of my situation, whether I was moving or on my back, or two inches from my target, I could find and literally make, a secure ‘launching pad’ so to speak, for my action. I find that often, we make grand plans for the year, and yet, we seem to loose our balance as we launch into the new year. We aren’t focusing on where we are now, and the steps to get to our goal, in addition to the goal itself. We just run full boar towards the objective and then we aren’t prepared when life hits us upside the head and sends us into a tail spin. Then from one tail spin to another until we wind up at the end of the year, dazed and wondering what happened. Yet we don’t learn from our mistakes  and instead launch into the next year, exactly the same. What we need to do is look at the here and now. Settle your differences. Surrender the past to the past. Wipe clean the slate. Don’t drag last year’s baggage into the fresh year. Start from the ground up. I think the hardest thing for me, is to forgive myself for messing up, and then to accept the apologies that I never received from others. This gives you peace to start again. Once these things become a habit, you can apply them ‘on the move’ as you work towards higher goals. Aim small, miss small. Launch from a sturdy platform.

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To close, don’t get discouraged by seemingly insignificant goals. Keep your chin up and realize that even the greatest marksmen and women, the most successful people, started at ground level. There is no shame in starting small. Second, prepare for the unexpected. This goes for target practice and life. You can never know exactly what your opponent will do, but you can prepare to beat him(or her) be anticipating the unexpected and being ready to counter it. Life will hit you out of nowhere. Always prepare for the worst case scenario. Stand firm, but be flexible. Don’t forget to carry extra ammo.

May your every bullet hit its mark and may you accomplish your dreams.

Happy New Years!!!

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Buying a Personal Firearm

Happy election day!

Today we’re just going to look at purchasing a personal firearm.

Buying a personal firearm is a big decision and you should be the one to do it. You need to love the way it feels in your hands (or at least be comfortable with it), the way it shoots, the look, and be comfortable with carrying it.girls_guns_women_firearms_shopping_gun_store If you don’t like it, you won’t carry it and it won’t be any good to you. Just a waste of money. So don’t let others choose for you. Don’t just go with the crowd and shoot what everyone else thinks you should shoot. You make the choice yourself and stick with it. Don’t worry about the haters, you’ll always have one or two. If you didn’t I’d be worried about you.

First: Figure out what you’re looking for. If you are wanting a self-defense weapon, what kind? In-home or to carry on your person? Will you need to conceal carry? Are you more worried about personal comfort or are you looking for an effective punch in your pocket? Write down a list of what is important to you in a firearm. All of this determines where you should start looking.

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Once you know what you are wanting your firearm to accomplish for you, take your list and head to the nearest gun shop. Try to find a place that stocks experts behind the counter, not just snotty nosed college kids. Show them what you are looking for in a gun and see what they suggest. Try out the ones they recommend. Make sure that they pay attention to what you’re looking for and don’t try to sell you what they want you to have.aaawomanimages I can’t say it enough. You’ve got to like what you’re buying, if you don’t, it’s a no-go. So get out there, visit a bunch of gun shops, gun shows, Walmart, Sporting Goods stores, etc. look over a large selection. Handle them, take them apart and put them back together, try out the trigger pull, wrack them, make sure they fit your hands. It’s good if you can find someone knowledgeable who can help you, but remember, it’s got to be your decision.  Once you figure out the one for you, I would suggest doing some price comparisons and getting the best bang for your buck, literally. Heaven knows you’re going to need the extra cash for practice ammo. Make sure you shoot a gun before shelling out money for it.

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Once you get the gun you’ve been looking for, use it! And I don’t mean just going out once in a blue moon and plinking at a target for a few minutes. I mean when you get it home, have someone help you take it apart, clean it, put it together again. Shoot it like crazy. Every chance you get. Carry it. Practice getting it out of different places (different types of concealment). Get it dirty. Clean it up. Know that gun like the back of your hand. Or better. You should get so familiar with it that it should feel like an extension of your body. A part of you. sccy_pink_gun

Have fun and good luck!

Preparing for the Hunt – Part 2

Okay, so you know where you’re going hunting and you’ve pulled your permits, know the laws and have the right rifle. Now what?

Well, there are a couple ways to hunt. There is stand hunting, driving, still hunting and stalking.

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Stand hunting is not for those that are the least bit nervous of heights. I’ve only been stand hunting a few times. Mostly, because my dad’s stand is a one-man stand. Basically, it works well because deer rarely look up when suspicious. You can also see a lot better and get a better shot, without worrying about underbrush. And (this is important to us girls) you don’t get as dirty as you do when you’re tramping through the woods, collecting all sorts of sticky seedpods and ticks and other creepy crawlies. The key to using one of these is to set it up in the right location. Generally near the edge of a corn field, or right off of a deer path, salt lick or watering hole. Also, you need to be VERY careful when setting the stand up. Accidents with these are generally very unpleasant.

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Driving  requires multiple people generally spreading out along on opposite ridges and driving the deer down into the valley. I’ve never done this, but sometimes the guys around here will all get together towards the end of the season and do a drive. There are a few things you have to be careful of. Primarily, accidentally shooting one of your buddies. So make sure everyone is wearing very good reflective and neon markers (generally vests, hats, chaps, etc.). Also, it is most successful if everyone is experienced hunters and excellent marksmen and understand the basics of driving.

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Still hunting is what I’ve done the most. And it’s easy. Find a place to sit (similar places to where you’d put a stand (see above) and find a chair and sit! We sometimes make a little ‘hole’ behind a downed tree or in a little hollow of ground and we surround it with branches and other natural camouflage. Sometimes we just haul a porch chair out into the woods and let it sit for a few weeks before hunting season so the wildlife gets used to its presence and so it starts taking on the smell of the outdoors. Then you go out there and wait.

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Stalking is probably the most fun, especially if you have a lot of pretty land and don’t mind walking. Basically you get suited up and grab your gun and walk until you see something. Then you get withing range, which sometimes means trying to head it off or chase it into a ravine. With stalking, you need to perfect the art of walking almost silently, hiding your noise under the noises of nature, being very, very still and making quick mental estimations. The deer will almost certainly see you before you see it since their senses are so much better than ours. However, as the saying goes ‘curiosity killed the cat’ and they are definitely one of the most curious creatures ever. They generally won’t run far before stopping to try and make out what you are.

Okay so a few facts* about deer that are important to take into consideration.

  •  They have an amazing sense of smell. Their sense of smell is between 500 and 1000 times that of a human. They can smell you up to a half mile away. Sooo, you need to not eat anything that will give you gas, before you go out. You shouldn’t use strong smelling shampoos, soaps or deodorants before going out. DON’T wear perfumes. And it’s good to hang up your clothes outside so they take on a natural smell before going into the woods. Also, Dad suggests washing with baking soda instead of normal soaps,  using baking soda deodorants** (recipe at the bottom of the page)  and not drinking beer or coffee and brushing your teeth really well. If you’re a die-hard and you’re stalking or sitting, you can roll around on the ground and get kind of dirty and earthy smelling. And if you’re really a die hard….well, bucks are attracted to the…er….scent of Does, so there are nasty scents you can get and dab on. (I don’t do this. It’s gross.)
  • Deer don’t see like we do, but don’t let this fool you. Their eyesight is 5 times better than ours, according to Dr. Karl Miller and his cohorts at the University of Georgia. They can see yellows and blues, but have trouble seeing reds and greens. They can also spot movement with amazing speed. “Get rid of the blue and anything shiny, and make sure movement is minimized,” Dr. Miller says. “It doesn’t matter that you’re sitting out in the open as long as you’re not moving.” That’s one reason camo is important. It breaks up your shape and helps you to blend into your surroundings. I’m not going to say there is any specific type of camouflage you should wear, it really just depends on what you want and can afford.
  • Just as the other senses we’ve discussed, a deer’s sense of hearing is incredibly sharp. The two ways to ways to defeat a deer’s hearing is to be silent, or to be loud. To be silent, you can use flannel to pad your hideout and dull the sounds you make and to learn how to walk like the Indians. This is possible. It just takes a lot of practice. Or you can ‘be loud’. This means that you make nature noises. If you go out in the woods and listen, you’ll find that it is actually quite loud. And you can ‘hide’ your noise under that blanket of sound. You can add to this by getting a pair of antlers and ‘rattling’ them. There are also buck calls you can get and blow occasionally. (I suggest watching a few YouTube videos on how to use both of these things.) Also pawing, stirring up leaves and basically making it sound like there are a couple of bucks fighting over a doe. This calls in more bucks. There are also doe calls that work much the same way.

Some tips regarding your rifle.

When you’re hunting, it’s easy for your firearm to get wet and dirty. Even if it isn’t actually wet outside, if it’s cold and then you come inside, the gun will condensate. Make sure that after the gun is room temperature, you wipe it down thoroughly. It is also important to clean your rifle after you shoot it. (We’ll cover cleaning in another post.) When you go out hunting, make sure you bring several rounds of ammo, just in case. Also, and this is very important, make sure your aim is good. The worst thing ever is shooting a deer and just wounding it. We aren’t out to maim deer, but to kill them. Killing means they should go down pretty fast which = as little pain as possible. So practice, practice, practice!

…And here comes the deer you’ve been waiting for…..Shot placement.

Okay, so here is a picture of a deer’s insides with your take-down placements marked.

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So where you shoot, depends on how the deer is standing and whether it is a buck or a doe. If it’s a buck, and you want to keep the head to mount, the optimal place to shoot it is in the heart and/or lungs. If it’s a doe or a buck who’s head you don’t care about keeping, you should shoot it through the brain, which means aim for the eye. However, missing the head (their heads move around a lot) is kind of tricky, but is sure to drop the deer immediately and painlessly. Other than that, the heart and lungs are best. 2011_01_shot-placement_800x400This is what it looks like for real. Don’t shoot the deer anywhere past the front shoulders, because there’s a greater chance of just wounding it and it running and your having to track it, possibly for miles. It will also be an a lot of pain. Be a responsible huntress. If you’re going to shoot at it, be sure you’re going to kill it.

Hunting is kind of an art. It takes a little time, but it isn’t too hard to master, if you have the patience and just keep trying. If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again!

 

*http://www.realtree.com/deer-hunting/articles/busted-five-things-you-don-t-know-about-deer-senses

**Natural deodorant:  2 Tbsp. baking soda, 1 Tbsp. arrowroot or corn starch, 3 Tbsp. coconut oil. Mix together until it’s the consistency of sour cream. Smear a little dab under your arms and go! 🙂

If you have any questions, post them in the comments below and I’ll be sure to answer them. Thank you and happy hunting!

Safety and First Aid

As when dealing with anything that could be used to inflict pain and/or death, we must be sure to include a section on safety and emergency response.

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First, ALWAYS treat a gun like it’s loaded because you never know if it really is or not. If you pay careful attention to the things covered in this section and apply them, you’ll lesson the chance of having to use the first aid that we cover later on.

How does one treat a gun that’s loaded?

  1. Always keep the barrel pointed down and away from you and everyone else. My dad offers this pearl of wisdom: ‘If you don’t want to utterly destroy it than don’t point the gun at it.’ I would also strongly caution you to keep the gun pointed away from your foot as I’m sure you like your feet the way they are. A common mistake largely promoted by popular media is pointing the gun up in the air. As we all know, what goes up must come down and that is no different for bullets. If the gun accidentally goes off while it is pointed up in the air, the bullet will come down somewhere and can seriously injure or even kill an innocent person, sometimes even miles away. The best rule of thumb is to examine the ground where you’re shooting. It it’s dirt, point down, if it’s any type of hard surface, like concrete or asphalt, point up.img_4015
  2. Keep your finger off the trigger until ready to discharge the gun. If you find your finger resting on the trigger and you are not ready to shoot, then carefully move your finger off the trigger and extract it from the trigger guard. The best place for your finger is just above the trigger guard and trigger on the lower frame(handguns) or lower receiver (rifles). This position is best for two reasons: 1) the safety button/switch is often located thereabouts, 2) In this position, your finger is off the trigger but ready to fire if need be. This is especially important in self-defense, hunting, or competition shooting where preparedness and speed are necessary.2
  3. When you are out shooting you should always have someone with you or at least have a phone with you. Accidents do happen. It’s always best to have access to help if the need should arise.

At this point I’m going to give you some advice on what to do if our worst nightmare should happen and someone shoots themselves.

First of all, don’t faint. That has never helped any one and never will. The sight and smell of blood can cause some people to get queasy, just take a deep breath and try not to think about the blood.faint Keep Calm!

Access the Situation.

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Carefully study this map of major organ and artery placement.

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First Aid    

  If the bullet has entered the torso, you should assume that it is a potentially life-threatening. Stay calm. The first thing you should do is call 911. It is top priority to get an ambulance on it’s way asap. Keep the person very still and calm. Try to staunch the bleeding as much as you can, but do not try to move or disturb the person until help arrives because a torso wound is easily complicated and can be deadly. The only exception is if there is life-threatening danger. Like a building falling on you.

Wounds on the limbs can be assessed by the amount of blood flowing out of them. Call 911 immediately. Depending on how heavily they’re hemorrhaging, you should be able to judge whether an artery has been hit or not. It is advisable to keep as much blood in the person as possible. Keep the person warm and still. If you can, slightly elevate the limb above the heart. (I mean, if it’s a thigh injury there’s no need to hang the person upside down.) Try to keep them calm until help arrives. If they freak, then their heart rate will rise meaning the heart is pumping more blood which means greater blood loss. Attempt to staunch the blood flow. Stay calm.

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If they pass out, which is likely when there is great blood loss, don’t freak out. Make sure they are still breathing and keep them warm. They will be okay and so will you!

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If you are the one injured, and whether you have someone with you or not, you can apply the same steps that are laid out above. Some wise words my friend who is a First Responder and Firefighter told me, were: You have to be able to tell yourself you’re not going to die. You have to look at yourself and say no matter how much blood I lose, no matter how bad it is, no matter how many holes there are, I’m going to make it. You have to tell yourself that no matter what happens I’m going to live. This is extremely important in negligent discharges because you’re not psyched up like you are in a fight. The adrenaline isn’t pumping till after the accident when you need to slow down. You don’t need/want to go into shock, so having the ability to tell yourself that no matter what happens you’re going to keep kicking is extremely important. It’s psychological. Even if it sounds silly now, it’ll get you home to your loved ones at the end of the day.

If you are hunting, or far away from medical attention, try to get the injured person to the nearest road or populated place. HOWEVER, if you suspect any sort of back or neck injury do not try to move them unless there is eminent danger . Moving a person in such a condition is an easy way to kill them. Instead, leave a phone if you have one (which you always should), with them and you go for help. If you are injured and have no one with you then give detailed directions, or as much as you can, to the dispatcher. Also, you should never go hunting without telling someone where you’re going to be and when (approximately) you’ll be back.

Medical Training.

I strongly recommend (as do my friends int he medical profession) taking a CPR class and learning how to tie a tourniquet.  Just in case you ever need it. The American Heart Association provides excellent CPR and First Aid classes for a reasonable fee. If you are into more extensive training I would recommend (although I haven’t personally taken it yet, I will soon) Tactical Response’s Action Medical course. I know the people that do them, and they know what they’re talking about and are very thorough.

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A Final Note.

Lastly, unload your gun when it is not in use. The exception for this would be guns carried for personal defense. A Personal Defense weapon should always be loaded. Bad guys won’t wait for you to load the gun before engaging you. More about this later.                                  When you are not using your gun you should immediately put the safety on.

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Well ladies, I hope this was helpful. If you have any questions or would like for me to write about something specific, let me know!

Target Practice

Practice makes perfect.

This is a loaded statement, because in all reality, you will perfect what you practice whether it is correct or not. That is why it is essential for an individual to get quality training.

When deciding what training to get there are a few things to consider: First, What are you training for?img_3996

If you are interested in protecting yourself and those around you, it might not be the best idea to take a hunting or competition class, even though those classes might be teaching the right things for that category. This section caters to handguns, pistols specifically, but most of the points can be applied to rifles as well. Find the training that is right for you and caters to your specific needs and where you desire to progress to.

Note: Taking a handgun carry permit class will not teach you everything you need to know about shooting. You shouldn’t get the permit until you know how to shoot your weapon and are prepared to carry it. Because if you are carrying and you don’t know how to shoot, you are carting around a weapon for your attacker to use on you.

The next thing to think about is pricing. Unless you are blessed with a bottomless pocketbook, you are probably asking yourself ‘what am I signing myself up for? Will this cost more than I am willing/able to pay? Is it worth spending a few hundred to a few thousand dollars on? Etc.’ Well, ladies, I share your predicament. Owning, operating and outfitting firearms is not generally cheap. However, there are often more economical ways to every expense, and we’ll learn more on that specific topic in a later post. For training specifically though, finding a really good basic training course is essential. And will be worth the cost just so long as you are applying what you learned and practicing often. 

[This is my first target from practicing this past weekend. I’m not perfect, and I’ll just tell you right now, you aren’t always going to have amazing grouping, and sometimes your nail polish will get chipped. It’s okay. Just keep going!]

Get good training, and then apply it. Use it. Practice. If you don’t use what you learned you are wasting your trainer’s time as well as the money you spent. Now I do understand when you say, “But I haven’t got any time to train, not to mention practice!” I’m in the same boat. Finding the time and motivation to practice just isn’t a priority for most women. It’s hard and awkward, and for the majority of us ladies, we just aren’t comfortable wielding implements of death and destruction. However, I figured out a simple solution for daily/weekly practicing a while back. Maybe it’s silly and most guys would laugh (let them!), but there are these airsoft handguns that are all metal and are close to the same weight and size as a real handgun.airsoft-asg-gbb-hw-g

For some mysterious reason, they are so much easier, and even fun, *gasp* to practice with. (Maybe because you can rest assured that if it accidentally went off it wouldn’t kill anyone.) It is also really easy to target practice with in the backyard. A piece of wood will stop the little plastic pellets – so no fear of it punching through your hedge and killing the neighbor’s cat.cat

If you live within city limits, have a hectic schedule, or just aren’t comfortable practicing with a real gun without supervision yet, this might be an option you should consider. Also, they’re not very expensive. A fun way to practice with these is to get a tin pie plate and hang it up in front of something secure that will stop the pellets. Then plink away! It is very satisfying to hear the Tink! Tink! Tink! of your projectile smacking the target. As you get better, you can use smaller and smaller targets to tighten your grouping*.

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*Grouping – The placement of multiple shots on a target in one shooting session. The closeness of the grouping, the nearness of all the shots together,  is a measure of the accuracy of a weapon, and a measure of the shooter’s consistency and skill.

 

 

 

 

 

Okay, so what to practice?

Well, your trainer should give you a list of things that you can practice on a daily basis. In case he/she didn’t, here are a few things to work on regularly. (I will be writing a post about techniques and proper execution of these practices very soon so stay tuned for that!)

First practice getting a really good two-handed hold on your handgun (Pistol). You might like some help making sure you’ve got this. Make sure your gun is unloaded and the chamber is empty. Then take your strong hand (this depends on if you are right handed or left-handed) and firmly embed the grip in the soft fleshy part of your hand between your thumb and pointer finger. Your hand should be as high up on the grip as possible and holding the grip as tightly as possible. Now press your other palm to the first palm/exposed grip and wrap your fingers tightly over the other ones. (Long nails don’t work well with firearms. I’m not saying cut them all off, but you may want to file them down a bit. They will get caught on stuff and break, also fingernails stabbing into your palm when gripping a gun, doesn’t feel extremely pleasant.)  Your thumbs should run, stacked, parallel with the slide. Note: if your fingers are on the slide, they’re going to get pinched. This is painful and something to be generally avoided if you like keeping blood inside your body. grip-progression

This guy is demonstrating this hold really well, except that his thumbs need to drop down a bit. (Sorry these aren’t ladies hands. I’m working on getting some women’s examples soon.)

Face your target. Your feet should be in a comfortable stance, legs about shoulder width apart with one foot forward more than the other (for me, my left foot is forward about 5-6″). Your arms should not be locked. Instead, they should be slightly bent so as to absorb the shock from the gun firing.correct

This helps you to refocus on your target  quicker after each shot. Which in turn helps your accuracy.  Lean forward into it a bit. It should be rather difficult to wrestle that gun from your hands at this point. This is good. You have more control this way.

Now you are ready to shoot. I suggest setting a preferred grouping for yourself and practice until you get all your shots in that area. Next time you shoot you can make it a bit smaller. Go easy on yourself, the first time you go out to shoot, your goal may be to just get all the shots on the target itself. That’s okay.surprise2

Like most of you, at this point in learning all this, I was saying to myself, “Um, this takes a long time. What if I need to shoot fast to defend myself?” But like we said at the beginning, practice makes perfect and eventually, with practice, picking up your gun like this will become second nature and will take you no time at all. It’s sort of like putting on mascara. At first it was sloppy and took a long time, but you soon got the hang of it and it’s not a problem now. So be encouraged! You can do this!

Well, this post waxeth long. I shall write more on the many questions this epistle has probably aroused, very soon. If you have specific questions you would like answered, please tell me in the comments. Thank you for your time, and have fun practicing! 

Anatomy of the Handgun

Hello! So today we’re going to cover the basic anatomy of handguns. The category ‘handgun’ can be broken down into two basic types. And each type then has variations. But we’re just covering the basics today and maybe in a later post we’ll go over a few of the variations.

The two basic types of handgun are the Pistol and the Revolver. Most modern women will encounter more pistols than revolvers, so we’ll start with that.

Pistols ~

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The history of the pistol is rather unclear, primarily because of the misconception between the words ‘handgun’ and ‘pistol’. People often interchange these two names because they think they mean the same thing. I always did. But while talking to a gunsmith the other day, I was ‘set strait’ on which one was which. A handgun can be used collectively to mean any gun without a shoulder stock and that can be fired with one hand. While a ‘pistol’ is any gun that has a chamber that is integral with the barrel (which means it is in the barrel) and can hold multiple cartridges in the handle. Pistols are generally rather boxy and, especially the new ones, have a magazine which feeds the cartridges into the chamber through the handle of the gun.

The earliest record I can find of the pistol was made by Paul Mauser and his colleagues in 1889.

Distinguishing Features: A chamber that is integral with the barrel of the gun. Multiple rounds of ammunition in a magazine.gun-blog

Technically, a single shot is considered a pistol, except that is only can shoot one round at a time. It also had an interesting history so I’m going to do a separate post on single shots.

The general range that a pistol can shoot accurately is up to 200 yds.

The recoil can be significant, but for the most part, it’s pretty moderate.

Most common types of pistols today: Glocks, Colts, H&Ks (Heckler and Koch),

Springfield Armory, and the Smith and Wesson.

Revolvers ~

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In 1818 Elijah Collier of Britain invented the Revolver or revolving pistol which began to be mass produced in 1822.

Here in America, Samuel Colt invented what we now know as the Revolver in 1836.

Distinguishing Features: Revolving cylinder that contains the cartridges. Also, cap and ball or cartridge arms. Barrel length can be anywhere from 1” to 16”.

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The general range to be effective is up to 100 yds.

The recoil depends on the gun. Some have no ‘kick’ and some can knock you flat.

There are different reasons to own different types of handguns. Everybody has their preferences and will argue them in to the ground. However, it’s best, when looking for the right firearm for you, to try out a lot of different types until you find what you like best. Don’t let other people try to tell you what you need. You need to get the type that you are comfortable with or you won’t carry and shoot it.

And as a side note, let the haters hate. If you love what you’re carrying and it works for you, then that’s what matters. You don’t need their negativity in your life, anyhow.

Guns: An American Heritage

America is based on freedom. A very intelligent man once said: Freedom stands for something greater than just the right to act however I choose—it also stands for securing to everyone an equal opportunity for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. [Mike Treder, IEET website.]

Freedom isn’t free and never has been. It is a precious yet intangible abstract. A concept that many millions have paid the ultimate price to give to their posterity – you and I.

Freedom is the right to justice and happiness. You cannot have that right if you have no power. Power is won through the ability to wield fear over your enemies or those who do wrong. I would say that the greatest power a person, or in our case, a people, can wield over another is the fear of death. Before the first firearms where invented and dispersed, people used swords and axes – much less humane, if you ask me. The modern day weapon is the all-powerful, and stunningly swift gun. To own these en mass, is to keep the power over freedom in the possession of the free people.

Besides being used to defend our freedom, firearms have long been a part of our American Culture. They were with the pilgrims who began to settle our coasts. They purchased our freedom from our British overlords. They saved our ships in 1812. They are wound in the myths and legends surrounding the settling of our frontiers. They worked their way west to our farthest coasts at the sides of the settlers. They were used to fight slavery during the Civil War. They protected our cowboys and the cattle they guarded out in the wild west and settled duels in the east. They were the trademark of the infamous gangsters of probation America. Then they marched with our doughboys to deliver freedom to our allies overseas in 1913 and again in 1941. Serving justice to a virulent and deadly fascist party known as the Nazis. The more recent history of the American firearm has become muddied with the smears of crime and mass killings of the last quarter century. Because of this bad reputation accumulated since the Vietnam War, many people, women especially tend to view firearms as evil devices that kill people. This is a misconception. As we continue in this journey together, we will begin to understand them on a more intimate level and will learn to use and appreciate them.

Right off the bat, I would like you to lay aside any notions that guns kill people. I once read a sign that said ‘if guns kill people than pencils must misspell words’. Guns do not kill people. People kill people. If there were no guns, people would still get killed. [statistic: 4x more people die from hammers / 8x more people get killed from falls.] Ultimately, all people die. This is just a reality of life that we need to accept. But we are here to make sure that it’s not because of your mishandling of a firearm.

In upcoming posts we’ll begin to go through the basics of safety, gun anatomy and reasons to carry a firearm. From there we’ll progress into shooting basics and different techniques, tips and hacks.

Remember, if you would like and specific areas covered you can go to our contact page, or use my email address, and send me your ideas, comments, or corrections. I’m excited to hear from you!🙂