There is no ‘one gun’, no single answer that you can give in all scenarios when someone asks “what should I get?”. Well, there is one answer that always works: “It depends.”
The reason is that we’re all different. Different hand sizes, different hand strengths, different budgets, different goals for ourselves and what we want to be able to accomplish with our guns, and different amounts of effort we’re willing to put in in order to attain those goals. In order to give someone a good, useful recommendation on a gun, or really anything for that matter, you have to take all of those factors into account.
I’ll use myself as an example. I currently own… (checks the Armory page) …two rifles, four pistols, and one lonely shotgun. Each has it’s use and there isn’t much overlap between them.
I’ve got a…
- …rifle for hunting medium game
- …rifle for home defense, competition, and hunting small game
- …silencer for the HD/competition rifle
- …pistol for normal CCW and competition
- …pistol for special CCW
- …pistol for hunting medium game
- …pistol for people who are recoil sensitive
- …shotgun for clays and upland birds
Just as I’ve got a gun for quite a few situations, different people in the same situation can be best suited by different guns. There are so many factors when it comes to this that it’s impossible to pick a single gun and proclaim it to be ‘the best’. The thing is that it’s not only about usage. Who we’re talking about plays into it as much or even more than the intended role.
Close range home defense for a 5′ 10″, 185 lb female powerlifter who benches 225 for reps? 12 gauge. Pump or semi-auto depending on her budget and skill.
Close range home defense for a 5′ 4″ dude who’s never set foot in a gym, but hits the range regularly? I’d say an AR pistol or even a PCC would be a better option.
Live out in the country and away from neighbors? Everyone’s getting .45-70’s.
Honestly, it really doesn’t matter what you have. As long as the gun you’ve got for the intended use is even halfway close, your skill can make up for almost any equipment downfall. How many settlers used muskets to fight off Native Americans? How many cops chased and caught bad guys using only revolvers and shotguns? How many soldiers fought in wars using only 5-shot bolt action rifles? Like I said, as long as you’re not completely off base (like using a .22 target pistol for duck hunting or a safari magnum for squirrels), your skill can make up for your equipment deficiencies.
I’d rather be beside a dude running a lever gun like a pro than beside some jack wagon with an awesome $2,500 AR and doesn’t know how to use it.
See you next Friday -S_S