Handgun vs Long gun for Home Defense - a discussion starter

This is a discussion on Handgun vs Long gun for Home Defense - a discussion starter within the Home (And Away From Home) Defense Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; long gun w/o a doubt. Under stress, odds of miss is much less likely with LG vs. HG due to 3-point support(support arm, shooting hand, ...

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Thread: Handgun vs Long gun for Home Defense - a discussion starter

  1. #46
    Member Array johnshia's Avatar
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    long gun w/o a doubt. Under stress, odds of miss is much less likely with LG vs. HG due to 3-point support(support arm, shooting hand, shoulder) compared to 1-point support with HG.

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  3. #47
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peckman28 View Post
    ... and there is a 20-rd box mag of Hornady .223 hollow points nearby for the AR if things get real ugly.


    Do you have multiple spare AR-15 magazines loaded and ready to go, or actually just a box of cartridges that would need to be loaded up prior to use? Seems that a handful of 20-30rd full magazines would be preferable.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
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  4. #48
    Senior Member Array wjh2657's Avatar
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    Too many people around here watching Rambo flicks and taking them seriously. When you start discussing SHTF and 4+ BG invasions, we are talking combat. I have been there. One lone guy with an AR in a house with drywall construction for defense is simply a funeral in the making, he is one dead dude! Don't let some expensive "Combat instructor" talk you into this one. One man against multiple well armed assailants has already lost the fight. Superman is a comic book character, he ain't real!

    In this scenario, you need to be outside and you need 12 ARs and an MG, preferably a Ma Deuce (.50 cal). The 12 ARs are for the twelve Marines or Rangers that make up your squad. You need to be outside to set up a real kill zone so you can get them all right off the bat, or you will be in the agonizing situation our guys find themselves in over there. In an urban fight against an enemy that is spread out, you lose good guys too.

    What I am getting at is that buying expensive military weapons and many magazines for a fight against the Muslim Hoarde when they attack your home is wasting money. You are going to die pretty quick anyway. Arm youself for the "criminal" break in of maybe two or three guys. Arm with good quality weapons and get lots of practice with them. A good pump shotgun, a good handgun or a lever action or bolt action rifle is going to be all any of us are ever going to need.
    Retired Marine, Retired School Teacher, Independent voter, Goldwater Conservative.

  5. #49
    Member Array shooter1's Avatar
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    Unlike wjh2657, I don't go into a fight expecting to lose. I don't handicap myself with less than the best tools for the job either. Don't know where he's "Been There" at, but my experiences have taught me that the hunted frequently have the advantage over the hunters.
    Home invaders are not likely to be a trained fire team, and they are in my AO. If I don't survive, it's because I made more mistakes than the invaders. It'll never be because I didn't have the best tools available at my disposal. If one can't afford a good semi auto, center fire rifle, whatever they have will likely get the job done. Proficiency with weapons and a sound, well rehearsed plan are the key. Without the former, thousands of dollars spent on toys won't help much.
    str1

  6. #50
    Senior Member Array wjh2657's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shooter1 View Post
    Unlike wjh2657, I don't go into a fight expecting to lose. I don't handicap myself with less than the best tools for the job either. Don't know where he's "Been There" at, but my experiences have taught me that the hunted frequently have the advantage over the hunters.
    Home invaders are not likely to be a trained fire team, and they are in my AO. If I don't survive, it's because I made more mistakes than the invaders. It'll never be because I didn't have the best tools available at my disposal. If one can't afford a good semi auto, center fire rifle, whatever they have will likely get the job done. Proficiency with weapons and a sound, well rehearsed plan are the key. Without the former, thousands of dollars spent on toys won't help much.
    str1
    Republic of VietNam : 1963-1966. 1967-69. 1970-71. (USMC retiree (30 years active duty)

    Actually we agree on most points. I believe that any home defense scenario we are likely to encounter will not involve a squad or platoon size enemy force. I also believe that we are best served by good solid normal defensive weapons , to include rifles but not with many, many magazines for a long protracted battle. I don't intend to go into a defensive situation expecting to lose, but anybody who actually believes they can enter the scenarios presented (multiple opponents armed with high capacity Automatic Fire weapons) depending on firepower alone can survive are not being realistic. I need to outhink them before I try to outshoot them. A well thought out home defense system (Physical Security, lighting and weapons) can be worked against the foe utilizing normal civilian defensive weapons..

    I lost my "Superman Complex" the first time I watch "Good Guys" get killed and realized it wasn't a movie.

    In such a situation, all of the "End of Days" caches of weapons some people seem to have a need for are not really going to be of much good. What we need to prepare for is the home invasion by criminal types and again I believe that the normal defensive weapons (Handguns and Shotguns) will suffice. I feel no need for rapid fire rifles or machine guns for home defense. If they are far enough away or are that many in number that I need such weapons, I am probably not in a home defense situation and am a party to combat, not a home owner defending his home.

    Keep in mind that this just my philosophy, I am not mandating it for anybody else. It is all predicated on being an old man and wishing to get much older!
    rickz301 likes this.
    Retired Marine, Retired School Teacher, Independent voter, Goldwater Conservative.

  7. #51
    Member Array 9mmPro's Avatar
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    Get all three and use whatever you feel will stop the threat,

    My theory is depending on how loud the break in is i would go for the biggest gun-meaning the louder the break in the more determined the attacker is, for example , someone picks lock on door go to silent mode with handgun, if someone kicks your door in go for the shotgun or the AR15 .
    Bushmaster XM15 E2S Shorty
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  8. #52
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    wjh2657,
    RVN 68-69. LEO retired.
    Actually we do agree that the plan is more important than the means. I see little value in having multiple long guns in addition to a handgun cached by the bed. If you bunker down, one gun is sufficient. If you have to move out of your bedroom for any reason, you're leaving guns behind. That's never a good thing to do. I believe you should pick one and become proficient with it. I also believe the one you choose should be the best one for the job. To me, that means a short, light, high capacity weapon of adequate caliber. Hey! That describes an AR! If that doesn't solve the problem, I'm in over my head anyway.
    str1

  9. #53
    Senior Member Array wjh2657's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shooter1 View Post
    wjh2657,
    RVN 68-69. LEO retired.
    Actually we do agree that the plan is more important than the means. I see little value in having multiple long guns in addition to a handgun cached by the bed. If you bunker down, one gun is sufficient. If you have to move out of your bedroom for any reason, you're leaving guns behind. That's never a good thing to do. I believe you should pick one and become proficient with it. I also believe the one you choose should be the best one for the job. To me, that means a short, light, high capacity weapon of adequate caliber. Hey! That describes an AR! If that doesn't solve the problem, I'm in over my head anyway.
    str1
    Sounds like a plan to me!
    Retired Marine, Retired School Teacher, Independent voter, Goldwater Conservative.

  10. #54
    Member Array Bandolero's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonInNY View Post
    I recommend the book, "In The Gravest Extreme", by Massad Ayoob.
    This should be mandatory reading for all CCWers.

    Although I would not mind seeing a more contemporary edition of it....

  11. #55
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    I'd add to the rules listed:

    5) Keep a round in the chamber - you can't count on the sound of any firearm chambering a round to make the bad guy wet his pants and run away screaming like a frightened school girl. You've got a better than even chance, given the audacity of the intruder in entering the home in the first place, that BadGuy is going to hear the noise, drop, find cover, and begin shooting in the direction the noise came from.

    6) Don't use lasers or flashlights to find your target. Same principle as in #5. It is a good idea to have a handgun equipped with both nightsights and a laser, but only use the laser for last minute additional precision (so you don't for example, miss the carotid artery and only hit the esophagus).

    7) Get a dog; one that will make a lot of noise when intruders come in. Don't expect the dog to be a weapon, don't get a "guard dog" or an "attack dog" and don't train the dog to attack (or you may be on the wrong end of a civil suit when he mauls the child next door). But they make great burglar alarms as well as distractions for the intruder. The idea is to wake you up as well as to distract Badguy, so YOU can come out and "bite" the intruder.

    As to calibers and such: lots of people forget that small, lightweight, and super fast bullets lose kinetic energy at the square of the loss in velocity, but only linearly with respect to mass. That means, as soon as a .223 (for example) bullet hits something, it loses power much, much faster than does a .45ACP, which will continue along its merry way because it won't lose K nearly as fast - it was slow to begin with. At the same time, if your target is moving, you have to consult trajectory tables to get the elevation right if you're using that kind of big, heavy bullet, because they have fairly steep trajectories (gravity, you know, and its effect on the much greater mass of the larger bullet).

    My preference for defensive rounds is either 9mm 124 gr. or .38 special 125 gr., or either of those in the +P flavor (depending on the ability of the gun to absorb the greater recoil). Factory produced ammunition in those sizes from any reputable manufacturer will have more than enough kinetic energy at fifty yards to crush human bone. Thus, either will be effective at normal defensive range. That size also represents the best compromise between a flat trajectory and mass. The risk of serious injury due to overpenetration is slight, but they'll provide adequate penetration.

    All this, of course, assumes that one is actually capable of shooting reasonably accurately. I know of a public defense attorney who does appellate work in the Southwest who said, "Shot placement is king; adequate penetration is queen; everything else is angels dancing on the heads of pins."
    Daniel L. Hawes - 540 347 2430 - HTTP://www.VirginiaLegalDefense.com

    Nothing I say as "user" should be taken as either advertising for attorney services or legal advice. Legal questions should be presented to a competent attorney licensed to practice in the relevant state.

  12. #56
    Senior Member Array Moga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10thmtn View Post
    Pistol - for moving inside the home. Leaves a hand free for doors, light switches, a flashlight, the phone, and grabbing the kids.

    Shotgun (loaded with buckshot) - last line of static defense once everyone is in the safe room.

    Carbine or rifle - area defense outside the home in a temporary breakdown of law and order scenario.
    Yep. This pretty much explains my weapon matrix too.
    2nd Amendment: because personal violence never makes an appointment.
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  13. #57
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    I prefer a pistol caliber carbine for home defense, which was not mentioned in the article
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

  14. #58
    Senior Member Array Texag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pgrass101 View Post
    I prefer a pistol caliber carbine for home defense, which was not mentioned in the article
    Why? It has all the disadvantages of a rifle with none of the advantages.

  15. #59
    Senior Member Array MR D's Avatar
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    I really like my pistol caliber carbine too! .44 Mag levergun... after the tune up I have 14 rounds of 240Grn. jacketed soft tips on tap - it is short, handy and fast... and it is lighter than my AR...

    my wife gets the AR in a hold you're ground scenario anyway (we are both military veterans - and we have both survived a 'lawful use of force' [self defense shooting] that was brought to us by 4 misguided yutes years ago)



    aim small - miss small

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