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View Poll Results: What do you recommend for a first gun?

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  • Still the 22

    58 54.21%
  • Airguns

    20 18.69%
  • Pistol Caliber Carbine

    3 2.80%
  • other

    6 5.61%
  • Depends

    20 18.69%
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Thread: Is 22lr still your "first gun" advice?

  1. #21
    Boolit Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    BB gun then single shot .22 with iron sights.

  2. #22
    Boolit Master
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    177 Diana air rifle when I was 9 .wish I still had it then 22s etc

  3. #23
    Boolit Master jeepyj's Avatar
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    I almost voted for the .22 however I really believe the BB/Pellet is a better choice. That being said I'm thinking about youth. I would change my poll answer to .22 for an adult.
    Sometimes it takes a second box of boolits to clear my head.
    Feed back thread http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...?261449-jeepyj

  4. #24
    Boolit Master


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    there's a .22rf shortage, really?

    i've always believed that beginner "kids" should start off with a real gun and make that a .22rf single shot.

    hard to beat a crickett, real hard. for lil' kids to a-dults.

  5. #25
    Boolit Master
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    first time shooters are much more likely to take safety instructions seriously if it is loud and smokes a little and yes causes more reaction on the target.
    Before you throw me to the Wolves I own 3 high end air guns. They all have there place.

    Dave C.
    Distinguished, Master,2600 club, President 100 badge holder.

  6. #26
    Boolit Master
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    Have to go with an air rifle as the first gun, with the .22 RF as the first firearm.

    If an air rifle is chosen as a first gun then don't scrimp. The gun should be a quality piece though no need going hog wild.
    A multipump pneumatic makes the best sense, no BBs guns as such, a rifled barrel that can handle lead pellets with a high degree of accuracy.
    The .22 bore airguns are my choice, mainly because the size of the pellet makes them easier to load and keep track of. the .177 pellets are just too tiny to get a good grip on.
    That said the Daisy 880 in .177 is an excellent first gun, despite too much plastic used with recent production versions, though proportioned more for a teen ager than for a youngster.
    If the Crosman 760 in .177 still had a rifled barrel it would be perfect for youngsters, and is a favorite of youngsters even now.

    For an air rifle that a young shooter can hold onto well into adulthood the Crosman 392 or 397 are as close to old time craftsmanship as you can get at a reasonable price.
    In general anything with a plastic stock is all said and done a throwaway, they just don't have any real character to speak of. When it comes time to spend money on resealing an old airgun its hard to justify spending money on a rifle that was built on the cheap.

  7. #27
    Boolit Master
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    I'm swinging more and more away from recommending a .22 lr to new shooters. Don't get me wrong I learned on a match grade bolt action .22 and I went shooting twice a week for a year thanks to a rifle club. Once I got to a place where I could own guns I got a .22 but I didn't shoot it for at least a year because of the .22 shortage and prices. Even now when .22 is the cheapest ammo out there and my range fee is only 3 bucks, I only get out there once every couple of months (hazards of being a father of young children).

    I'd say to get a decent air rifle and learn how to do that for the single shot part of training. Once you get to shooting multiple rounds and transitioning between targets a cheap carbine in whatever caliber your handgun is would be my advice. Because if you're only going to shoot a few times a year the price differential isn't huge. If you're going to shoot a lot, you're probably looking at reloading for that caliber and you can feed both guns that way.

  8. #28
    Boolit Master
    Ed in North Texas's Avatar
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    For most purposes I still recommend the .22. But I don't live in a city and the .22 will be useful for a lifetime. My most recent non-target .22 use was to take out a rabid skunk with a Ruger .22-45. The .22 round didn't cost much, the $110.00 for testing the skunk's brain was still money well spent in safeguarding the dogs with rabies booster shots.

    For people living in a city the airgun could be a better choice for the reasons others have mentioned.

    Both is the best answer.
    Ed

    CW3 USA (Ret)
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  9. #29
    Boolit Master



    NavyVet1959's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed in North Texas View Post
    For most purposes I still recommend the .22. But I don't live in a city and the .22 will be useful for a lifetime. My most recent non-target .22 use was to take out a rabid skunk with a Ruger .22-45. The .22 round didn't cost much, the $110.00 for testing the skunk's brain was still money well spent in safeguarding the dogs with rabies booster shots.

    For people living in a city the airgun could be a better choice for the reasons others have mentioned.

    Both is the best answer.
    As it turns out, there are municipalities that have written their codes such that not only is it illegal to shoot a firearm in the city limits, but they also prohibit air guns, bows, and crossbows. I've found that even with such codes, you tend not to get noticed when you fire an air gun because the sound is such that people don't recognize it as such. It probably would be easily mistaken as just someone with an air powered nail gun.
    When you fill out your income tax forms at the end of the year, look and see how much money you have given the
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    stuff FOR you or TO you this year? I tend to believe the latter...

    Si vis pacem, para bellum -- If you want peace, prepare for war

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  10. #30
    Boolit Master wonderwolf's Avatar
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    "Depends" Assuming its for a youngster I would say yes A .22 pseudo target rifle is still the best way to go. However that rifle should be easily modified to a hunting roll as well and weight not be prohibitive as such.

    Savage Mk II's are cheap and was in fact my first rifle. With the way things are today you could get a good bolt action rifle such as a savage or CZ and find somebody to 3D print up single shot magazine adapters for the kid to use for the first year or so.

    This is what I would recommend for a youngster that has access to a JR smallbore program with instruction as that is going to be the best place to start for them.

    BB guns and airguns are imho not a good place to start a youngster off in firearms. If I ran into somebody at a store and they asked me what I would recommend I would avoid bb guns and airguns all together, unless its in an area where you are snowed in a good part of the year and have a barn or long hallway to practice down. Accuracy seems to really just suck with the kind of bb gun or airgun parents are willing to buy their kids who may be into it for a week then be onto the next thing....Also parents might see airguns and bb guns as toys as well and stop supervising their children after awhile with them...thats how windows get broken and kids get hurt.

    If the family is more of a hunting family rather than a target shooting and "Appleseed" type stuff then I would say start with a Contender with williams peep sights and a mid weight .22 rifle barrel. I hate to see kids start out with scopes and never learn irons...it really robs them of learning a lot about sight picture and trigger control I believe.

    NOW

    If we're talking about an adult that wants to get started, I would size up the individual...figure out what it is exactly they want to learn and go from there. The best thing you can do have one or two shooting sessions with that individual (not all of it on the bench!) and then get them to a match of ANY kind that they express interest in. They can ask tons of questions and get lots of help on figuring out what might be best for their first rifle depending on what exactly they want to do. I wouldn't recommend a .22 lr CZ to somebody who is trying to get started in a club that holds a lot of high power matches, where their first backstop is at 100 yards...see where I'm going with that? lost opportunity I think in some cases....it really depends on the individual.
    My firearms project blog

  11. #31
    Boolit Master
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    It is hard to beat a 22 rimfire for a first hunting rifle. Airguns are great for off season practice in the basement or garage with the kids.

    This is why I answered the Poll, "It Depends"

    That was a great question. Thanks for posting.

  12. #32
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by wonderwolf View Post
    "Depends" Assuming its for a youngster I would say yes A .22 pseudo target rifle is still the best way to go. However that rifle should be easily modified to a hunting roll as well and weight not be prohibitive as such.

    Savage Mk II's are cheap and was in fact my first rifle. With the way things are today you could get a good bolt action rifle such as a savage or CZ and find somebody to 3D print up single shot magazine adapters for the kid to use for the first year or so.

    This is what I would recommend for a youngster that has access to a JR smallbore program with instruction as that is going to be the best place to start for them.

    BB guns and airguns are imho not a good place to start a youngster off in firearms. If I ran into somebody at a store and they asked me what I would recommend I would avoid bb guns and airguns all together, unless its in an area where you are snowed in a good part of the year and have a barn or long hallway to practice down. Accuracy seems to really just suck with the kind of bb gun or airgun parents are willing to buy their kids who may be into it for a week then be onto the next thing....Also parents might see airguns and bb guns as toys as well and stop supervising their children after awhile with them...thats how windows get broken and kids get hurt.

    If the family is more of a hunting family rather than a target shooting and "Appleseed" type stuff then I would say start with a Contender with williams peep sights and a mid weight .22 rifle barrel. I hate to see kids start out with scopes and never learn irons...it really robs them of learning a lot about sight picture and trigger control I believe.

    NOW

    If we're talking about an adult that wants to get started, I would size up the individual...figure out what it is exactly they want to learn and go from there. The best thing you can do have one or two shooting sessions with that individual (not all of it on the bench!) and then get them to a match of ANY kind that they express interest in. They can ask tons of questions and get lots of help on figuring out what might be best for their first rifle depending on what exactly they want to do. I wouldn't recommend a .22 lr CZ to somebody who is trying to get started in a club that holds a lot of high power matches, where their first backstop is at 100 yards...see where I'm going with that? lost opportunity I think in some cases....it really depends on the individual.
    Very well thought out answer. I cannot agree more!

  13. #33
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by NavyVet1959 View Post
    Whatever they start out with, I believe that it should be a single-shot. A semi-auto just encourages wasting ammo in kids.

    Exactly! Make every shot count! Learn iron sights and trigger control. Put your brain to work with discipline.

    As a matter of history, a muzzle-loading squirrel/ rabbit rifle was the 22 of it's day. The first shot that I remember firing was from a 32 caliber squirrel rifle made in Ohio circa 1860.

  14. #34
    Boolit Master
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    22 LR The 10 year old girls like to shoot the squirrel guns as they call the 22's. They have shot 410 Ga. (Now Fixed was my first gun) , 20 Ga. and 12 Ga, and they shoot the 12's at turkey shoots. Shot a couple of air gun but still like to shot the 22's. It sound like a gun, looks like gun, there are some great deals on 22's riles if you shop around.

    I learned long ago shooting 1000 rounds does not make you a better shot. I go to the range and shoot groups of 3-5 rounds see where I'm hitting and how are the groups. Never had the funds as a kid to shoot a box of 25 let alone 50. So even the BB gun was shot into boxes and save and reuse the BB's. Now I know of guys going through way more than that . Not going to make them a better shot, shooting like that only makes them spend more money and make noise.

    Shoulder the gun, shoulder the gun, practice until your target is close to the aiming point. Once a firearm is sighted in it will shot where you aim. Pistols are different and I almost never shoot them, I need to get out the range sooner or later.

  15. #35
    Boolit Master
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    Yesterday we took 9 Boy Scouts to Western Wayne County Conservation Association (WWCCA) for a shooting day. We started with archery them moved to the 50yd range for .22LR. The boys had a great time with both, but I think the rifle range was their favorite. Several of the boys had never fired anything other than a BB gun before. The rifles were half and half bolt and semi-auto. All had scopes that were tuned in. I overheard one of the young boys tell another "I feel so mature" just after he loaded a round into the chamber. It was hard not laughing.

    If there are any members of WWCCA on this board, I would like to thank the club for a well run event that has helped make some of the up and coming generation friendly to the 2nd amendment.

  16. #36
    Boolit Master Forrest r's Avatar
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    It would depend on where I lived.

    My 1st gun was a bb gun, I was 5 and we lived in the city at that time. Instead of driving out to the country or range to shoot I'd simply go to the basement (winter) garage (summer) and had a bullet trap setup.

    When my sons got old enough they started on 22's, but all's we had to do was step out the door and shoot in the country.

    To this day I still have a 10-meter range setup in the basement, old habits are hard to break.

    Sorry for not being much help with which firearm. I believe quality range time is more important that what's being used. Convenience is huge, it allow for a lot of 1 on 1 quality range time.

  17. #37
    Boolit Bub sparkyv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken in Iowa View Post
    Exactly! Make every shot count! Learn iron sights and trigger control. Put your brain to work with discipline.
    I agree with NavyVet1959 and Ken in Iowa: Start out with a single shot using open sights, and make every shot count!

  18. #38
    Boolit Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    When I was a kid the TV series Davy Crockett was all the rage and my Grand Dad gave me an original Edward Tryon muzzleloading flintlock 32-bore fusil. He taught me to knapp flints, maintain and manage the gun and after demonstrating my ability to do so, I was allowed to hunt with it unsupervised.

    When I was 16 I was entrusted with an original 1851 .36 Navy Colt and learned to hunt with it too. My first exposure to cartridge guns was a Remington 513 .22 target rifle which we used to shoot 50 foot gallery in the high school ROTC, firing at the range at Fort Myer, VA, riding to and from the range and home on the red & black A, B & W bus.
    The ENEMY is listening.
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  19. #39
    Boolit Master Artful's Avatar
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    I'll go with depends - upon ammo availability - 22LR would still be my normal first choice but due to chronic shortages in certain areas I'd have to say that I may have someone look into an air rifle/pistol or even a Laser unit for their initial hand eye coordination.

    je suis charlie

    It is better to live one day as a LION than a dozen days as a Sheep.

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  20. #40
    Boolit Master Traffer's Avatar
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    If someone would ask me what was your first gun, the one you were trained on, It would be the 22 rim fire. I got my first one when I was 7 or 8? yrs old. As far as an air gun goes, the first one I had was at the age of 4. By the time I was 5, I was roaming the local area unsupervised with it. But that was a different time. I have a nephew (grand nephew, if you will) who has grown up with the revolving door father in the house. He is 11 yrs old. (I built my first gun when I was 11) I took him to the range with a 22 rifle and taught him some of the basics. It is strange to me for a person to have to learn sight alignment. But it is easy enough to teach. He was very encouraged about getting to shoot the 22. I spent several days with him in my shop, explaining guns to him and was hoping to take him under my wing and teach him some of the basic man skills that all boys should learn. But alas his mother got into a "new relationship" and now he is not able to join me in the shop anymore. I learned that his grandfather (my sisters first husband) gave him a BB gun. They live in the country and he could use it every day. He is bored with it because there is no one there to teach and share the experience with it. Oh we live in different times. It's very very sad. Remember when our hero's were Roy Rodgers, Gene Autry, Cisco Kid, and "the Rifle Man"? Anyway, don't get me going.
    AKA hans.pcguy

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