Confessions of a Newbie: What mistakes did you make?

What?! I did not get a shirt or a range bag. :neutral_face:

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@Fred_G Yup, me neither. I think when we get to “Respected” we should get a free T-Shirt. They just need to put the logo on the back. I hate front logo t-shirts…

Cheers,

Craig6

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Seriously, why is it no one realizes you don’t need the target on your chest? Most everyone knows how to shoot frontals.

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Well, it is usCca, they probably figure anything on the back will be covered up by a shirt or jacket anyway…

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I’ll conceal it well or excuse myself.

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Few people even know what the USCCA is and those who do won’t be those you need to worry about.

On top of that most people wearing a logo T of some sort aren’t carrying or wearing what they are advertising so I would not consider it an issue.

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There are a variety of different promotional times and options. :woman_shrugging: And everyone who has a USCCA Membership is a winner because of the awesome benefits included in the USCCA Membership. :smiley:

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IMPORTANT: We’d love to use the comments here for a blog article! If you would NOT like your comments used, please message me or comment below - be sure to tag me @dawn!

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I purchased my first intended carry gun before my CCW license arrived. I picked it up at the gun shop after my three-day wait, walked straight into the gun range. I didn’t clean the gun and gave the owner’s manual a cursory glance. It was a Keltec PF-9. Very lightweight and kicked like an angry mule. After the first shot nearly launched the gun behind me, I wrestled a much firmer - and much higher - grip on the gun. I pulled the trigger, the slide ripped rearward and tore a nice chunk out of my strong side thumb. Good thing I had a handkerchief in my pocket. Good thing I know how to tie a bandage from a handkerchief. Better thing that the handkerchief was clean.

I shot that gun for a few weeks, but by the time I started carrying, I had traded it in for a Steiger Cougar (which I eventually traded in for a Glock 43).

Lessons learned - clean the new gun, read the new gun’s owner’s manual and don’t be in such a hurry to shoot the new gun.

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I wasn’t a licensed carrier at the time- I had a guy whom I didn’t know, try to break into my house through a bedroom window. Chased him off the first nite, bought a firearm the next day, he came back the following nite and out the window I went with my firearm. Thankfully I didn’t shoot but I know now not to run after anyone.

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Slide bites! I know y’all have (at least) one. I still have two scars on my left thumb from many years ago when I first shot my Colt Officer’s Model 380 with my left thumb wrapped above by right thumb. They aren’t very noticeable any more. But damn that hurt.

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Walther 380 PPK/S : strange how those direct blow back operators snap that slide :blush:
smallish gun in big hand too!

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Misguided purchases!

  1. My first purchase was a Ruger Mark IV Target. Stainless and wood-like grips - gorgeous. Well, it weighed a ton and the slide (a rear-pull bolt), was way too tight. I traded it in for a Ruger SR22 after my wife decided my second choice, a snub nose revolver, had a very strong trigger pull. The amount a gun store gives you on a trade is, well, be careful what you buy so you don’t have to learn this the hard way, like I did.

  2. That SR22 started collecting dust when I found a gunsmith that dropped the trigger pull on the snub nose down to where she loves it. By now I’ve got ten magazines for the SR22 and a zipper bag that holds it all very nicely. I won’t mention the 22LR mag easy-loaders, the two really nice holsters or the mag carriers, When I tried this setup as a trade- in, the offer completely ignored all the extras. So I’m keeping it.

As it turns out, the SR22 is handy when I want to get some training that includes FTFs and FTLs, so it’s nice to have around. I shoot it better than the snub nose because the sight radius is much longer, making it a more accurate weapon for me when I feel like plinking at some targets. And 22LR ammo is way cheap.

Finally, getting set in my ways, I use the SR22 when it makes sense to do so. I keep the snub nose for concealment and for household protection. (The wife has her own now.) I’ll bet you can guess what kind of a gun I just put on order. I’ve gotten used to the weight and am now appreciative of the extra heft of a target pistol. I’ve discovered that a little oil goes a long way toward making that bolt pull a lot easier. I know of an online company that makes a “ring” attachment that helps with that pull, should it still be a problem for either of us. I told my gunsmith this was the last gun I’ll ever need - he just laughed.

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I tried concealing at 5 o’clock. I was so worried about printing I wanted to keep it on my back. Everytime I sat down in public it would fan out and poke out drastically. My shirt would also get tucked under the gun a lot. I was then given advice to try 4:00-3:30. Absolutely worked. I could sit, the gun stopped poking out. I found out I could wear just a T-Shirt and be totally concealed.

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Mistakes that stick out for me, although it was when I started getting into rifles:

  1. Don’t forget to put back on ear protection… more of an issue when fiddling with a new rifle plus checking/changing long range target plus being alone on the range
  2. Don’t place your eye right next to the scope… recoil surprise!
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@Dawn,

As detailed here,

Well, the combination of the woopin, loosing $3,000, and having to bring Yogi bear, I’m sorry, I mean Bessie the lost cow down the side of the mountain after I had to skin and field dress her out. That is one that sure stuck with me as far as making sure of your target.

I still say it’s their fault for keeping me up all night telling me about the man eating :bear:. Hey, Boo Boo, wanna go get a pik a nik basket? Me shooting that cow must have had some effect considering their were no more man eating bear attack that year.

Was probably a public service too. Think about the Mommy cows telling their calves that if they didn’t eat their hay, a monster on two legs would come and shoot em and chop em up :dagger: :cut_of_meat: and they would never be heard of again. I should have probably been given the key to the city. MURICA :eyes::us_outlying_islands::innocent:

Then add in the scare value for the bears themselves. I bet the Momma bears would tell their Cubs " if you don’t start putting on the weight for hibernation, you might come out early and you saw what they did to that poor cow". :innocent:

On the other hand I make darn sure where my rounds go.

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Had a friend years ago who begged me to fire my 7mm magnum, and he swore he had fired high power rifles previously. I told him to hold it tightly and not get to close to the scope, long story short he fired the rifle missing his target and almost dropping the rifle while reeling from the impact of the scope on his face left a trail of blood running down his face. We stopped the bleeding but he had no interest in shooting again.

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My confession is rather serious.

I have a Walther CCP. It has a single action trigger and a safety. I keep it loaded, with a cartridge in the chamber. I believe at the time, I kept it in the case it came with at night. I don’t remember for sure.

What I do remember is that one morning I had finished getting dressed, and was putting my gun on for the day. I reached down and picked up my gun, with my trigger finger on the outside of the trigger guard, as was my habit.

Only, this time I missed. My finger slipped inside the trigger guard and pulled the trigger all the way to the back as I picked up the gun. If I’d had a Glock, I would have fired the gun into my wall in the direction of my family. The polymer-tipped hollow point would not have reached them through two layers of bricks, but still.

Needless to say, I no longer index my finger on the trigger guard. I immediately changed to what I now know is actually the correct way, with my finger indexed on the frame. I also have it in a holster unless I have it drawn.

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I just thought about this randomly. When I first went to the range with my new gun I had a number malfunctions. I was “Riding the slide”. I was trying to be too gentle with the gun, so when I racked it It failed to Chamber the round.

Now I’m rough with my guns. They’re tools that I need to be able to trust.

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Way back in the day I had bought a National Match M1A (M-14) because I loved the look of the rifle. A bud of mine asked me when I was going to learn to shoot it. He introduced me to National Match shooting and we headed down to Camp Butner one frosty morning for my first Match. I was told “Stand on your hind legs and shoot the target.” I had never fired the gun before took a load recipe from a guy at the gun store and made 200 rounds of ammo. So there I am, no dope, no zero and no idea what either one of those things means.

Of course I got put on 1st string. 20 rounds slow fire. I dutifully loaded 20 rounds into the magazine and stood up to shoot. I had no idea what I was doing so I watched the guy to the right of me, Bang! Target went down and came back up with a spotter and a scoring disk on it. Bang! same thing. OK I got this. I’ve got this crotchety old Korean war vet spotting for me. I line up the sights… Bang! Nothing happens. I hear, shoot it again. Bang! Nothing happens. This goes on for 3 or 4 rounds when the Vet finally see’s dirt fly. At that instant in time the range was totally silent when he sings out “Put a hand full on it!” I looked back at him totally confused. He looks up “Elevation! Put a bunch on it!” I grabbed a handful of elevation and low and behold I shot an “X” then proceeded to shoot 9’s, 10’s and X’s. For a little while I had the moniker of “Hand full” Wess Sim’s was the old vet’s name, and he taught me lessons on the line that day that I still carry with me today. He had health issues back in the 80’s and I am sure he has gone on to his just rewards. Every now and then I will fell the wind on my face and hear the growl of his voice to remind me of something. God bless you my friend and on this Easter day you can know you have risen in your student’s teaching.

Cheers,

Craig6

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