Choosing your first gun isn't an easy decision, but carefully breaking down your options will help you make the right decision.
If you're testing the market for your first gun, you have some decisions to make. After all, the firearm will likely be with you for a long time, so carefully consider your needs and options before committing your hard-earned money.
Guns come in various sizes and calibers. Some are heavier and more powerful than others. You might not want the most powerful firearm available right away, although there's nothing wrong if that's your preference. In the end, your decision will come down to what you're most comfortable using, so it’s important to do some research and test firing as part of the process.
This guide will look at why you’re buying a gun in the first place and selecting the right firearm for that purpose and your preferences.
- There are many gun types available
- It’s best to research each platform before deciding
- Testing the firearm out before buying is recommended
- You can save money ultimately buying online
Why are you buying a firearm?
When choosing a gun to purchase, the first step is to think through why you want the firearm in the first place. Different weapons are best suited for different situations, so considering how you'll use the gun is the first step to buying the right one for you.
Home defense is one reason many Americans own guns. In a situation where you have an intruder in your home, you might want a portable firearm that you can carry throughout the property with ease. Buying an easy-to-use gun is also a good idea when protecting your home because time could be of the essence when getting the weapon ready to use. A more portable gun is also easier to aim and less likely to over-penetrate, which both help you control where any bullet you fire goes.
Shotguns and rifles can also be good choices for home defense. A pistol may not have the range to cover a large property, so a rifle might be a better choice. A shotgun is very intimidating and more forgiving to aim, which might be better for your needs, although they come with heavier recoil and a more limited ammo capacity.
Other gun buyers may have hunting top-of-mind when shopping for their first gun. You'll generally want a rifle or shotgun for hunting game, but make sure it's the right caliber for what you’re hunting so don’t ruin the meat, pelt, or other trophies. You don’t hunt rabbit with the same ammunition you’d use to hunt moose.
Some people buy firearms because they want to get involved in sport shooting, as well. In the world of sport shooting, there are a whole different set of options to consider, so your selection will come down to the kind of shooting you want to do.
Types of guns
Once you've determined what you need the gun to do, it's time to look at the guns on the market and how they fit into your lifestyle. There's no wrong answer here because it all comes down to what you're comfortable using.
Handguns are the most portable options on the market, making them ideal for home defense. They're popular with sport shooters, too. However, handguns aren't as useful for hunting because they're less accurate at long distances than rifles, especially with a scope. Handguns come in many different calibers that correspond with stopping power. When you go with .25 ACP, your firearm is best used for plinking or varmint control. On the other hand, the most popular calibers for self-defense are a bit bigger, including 9mm, .380, .38 special, .40, and .45. If you’re buying a gun for self-defense, one that fires a round in that range is a good place to start.
Shotguns are powerful and intimidating, which makes them a useful weapon when protecting your home. They're also heavy, challenging to operate, and may be overpowered for your use. In home defense, a shotgun could end up doing significant damage to your house, making them slightly more dangerous, as well. Shotguns come in 10-gauge, 12-gauge, 16-gauge, and 20-gauge models (lower gauges are generally more powerful) with 12-gauge and 20-gauge being the most popular.
The term rifle is quite broad and covers multiple firearm types. For example, bolt action, lever action, pump action, and break action rifles are excellent for hunting because they offer outstanding long-range accuracy. Some 22 LR caliber semi-automatic rifles are also suitable for hunting.
Semi-automatic rifles for home defense include the 223/5.56 caliber options on the market. Tactical weapons on the AR platform are also great for self-defense.
In the end, your decision could come down to how the firearm feels when you're holding it. Check out a few different options before making your decision to ensure you end up with a weapon you're comfortable having in your home.
Considerations before making a purchase
The world of online shopping has made buying a gun more straightforward than ever before, but at the same time, it has created some difficulties. When purchasing a firearm through an online store, you won't know anything about how it feels in your hand, how cumbersome it is, and how it shoots until it arrives at your home.
For those reasons, it's highly recommended that you head to a gun shop with a range and test a few options, even if you're making your final purchase online. Testing the gun out before you buy it ensures you know exactly what you're getting.
It's still possible to save money by shopping online; just use the in-person services available to you first to get a better feel for the model of gun you’re buying.
Do your research
No matter where you end up purchasing a gun, researching each type and its intended use is a good idea. Digging into this information ensures you're investing in the right firearm to match your lifestyle and that you can use it in the best possible manner.
When you're ready to buy a gun or ammo for it, Ammunition Depot can supply everything you'll need. Our online store carries a wide selection of firearms and ammunition, allowing first-time buyers to save money in the process. Visit Ammunition Depot's eCommerce store to see what’s available and make a purchase today.