Guest column: Buying a gun 101

Crowds started gathering an hour before the doors opened at Aegis Tactical for “Glock of Aegis” — a recent event held at Aegis Tactical. TGW Photo/Carrie Rasmussen

Lee’s note: Here’s a great guest column from Joe Krawtschenko, co-owner of Aegis Tactical. Joe’s an ex-LEO, former overseas contractor and a personal friend. This is his first submission, and it’s a good one. Thanks, Joe.

Buying Your First Gun

By Joe Krawtschenko

So you’ve made the decision (a good one) to buy a gun. A gun is a gun is a gun, am I right? Not quite. There are many options in the marketplace that vary depending on your preferences and it is up to us (with your help) to find you the right one.

Before we proceed we must discuss the 4 rules of firearm safety. The improper handling of firearms can have tragic consequences.

Always follow these rules, ALWAYS:

1. Treat every gun as if it is loaded.
2. Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire.
3. Never point a gun at something you are not willing to destroy.
4. Always be sure of your target and what is beyond it.

Why Are You Buying a Gun?

There are a number of reasons for needing a gun and it is our job to ask the right questions and find you the right firearm for the job at hand.

What will you use it for?

A recommendation on a hunting weapon will be quite different than one for personal protection. Even within the context of personal protection, the perfect (to you) concealed carry firearm could be totally different to one you would choose for home defense.

Factors such as ease of conceal, magazine capacity, caliber and sight radius may be important in some categories but not others.

Understanding what it is that you wish to use the gun for will help you decide which gun or sub-category of gun is right for you.

Type of Guns

To a potential new gun owner some of the lingo can be quite confusing. But once you become more familiar with firearm terms such as SA/DA and striker-fired it is really quite easy.

The selection of guns available is phenomenal; a reflection of current consumer tastes. While most would agree they need the same thing (a firearm to use to hunt or protect etc.) they may not want the same style due to their own personal preferences.

Do you prefer revolvers to semi-autos? Like striker- over hammer-fired pistols? Would you prefer a semi-automatic rifle for home defense rather than a handgun or shotgun?

Would you rather a semi-automatic versus a pump-action shotgun?

Our intent is to find you a firearm that is designed for your purpose that meets your needs and expectations.

How Much Should You Spend?

When it comes to guns you really do get what you pay for… to a certain extent. It would be difficult trying to explain why you opted for a $100 gun with known issues versus one from a reputable manufacturer for $300. $200 is a lot of money to most people, but is it worth more than your life?

Remember you will only take that firearm out when it is time to use it. You want to be assured that it will work every time, not just some of the time.

You can spend hundreds dollars, you can even spend thousands if you want to, but after a certain point the quality does not change; you are simply paying for the brand and design.

For plinking rifles and general range toys I have no advice. But when it comes to firearms that are for your defense, buy from a reputable manufacturer with a model/type that has been out long enough to be properly tested.

Ask Us a Question

We strongly believe in educating our customers. We have spent years developing long lasting relationships with our patrons and we always want to give you the best and most honest deal available.

If you have questions for us or would like to learn more about the classes we offer on a regular basis please stop by our store or call us at 941-755-1610 and talk to our friendly staff or visit us at Aegis Tactical.

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About Author

Lee Williams can’t remember a time in his life when he wasn’t shooting. Before becoming a journalist, Lee served in the Army and worked as a police officer. He’s earned more than a dozen journalism awards as a reporter, and three medals of valor as a cop. He is an NRA-certified law enforcement firearms instructor, an avid tactical shooter and a training junkie. When he’s not busy as a senior investigative reporter, he is usually shooting his AKs, XDs and CZs. If you don’t run into him at a local gun range, you can reach him at 941.284.8553, by email, or by regular mail to 1777 Main St., Sarasota, FL 34236. You can follow him on Twitter: @HT_GunWriter and on Facebook @The Gun Writer.

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