The conversation was about internet marketing and it was with my friend Jon Gibbon of armslist.com. Then out of the blue Jon asked me “If you could only have one gun the rest of your life what would it be?” “Hmmm…I guess it would be my Remington 870.” I figured I could hunt big and small game, defend the home patch and nothing stops like a 12 gauge slug. You can stop a charging dump truck with a 12 gauge slug.
Then the conversation moved to: What would you take if you could only have five guns the rest of your life? Yes, I know this is America, and we have the luxury of owning as many guns as we would like. I’m a person that gets a Christmas card from Ruger. I have four 30-06’s and was disappointed that in 2006 there wasn’t a parade in honor of its 100th anniversary. I’m still a little bitter that there has been no national celebration for the Model 1911 last year. I digress, but you get my point. Guns mean a lot to me. But, what if you could only have five?
My thought process immediately went to what I would have to exclude. How could I leave out the 1943 Walther P-38 that my father left to me when he died? He first showed me that pistol when I was four years old. The first real big gun I shot was a 1940 Springfield 1903 at the ripe old age of nine. It belonged to my friend’s dad, and he gave it to me when I graduated from college. These aren’t just mere guns; they are a part of my blue steel family. I’d rather eat a stink bug everyday for the rest of my life than part with them.
The next part of the decision making process I asked myself what guns I really need for my hunting, shooting, and defense needs. So I lined them all up and picked my five. Here they are:
1) Ruger Model 77 Stainless, 30-06 with a 2-8 Pentax Lightseeker
This rifle has harvested 10 whitetails with 10 shots for me. It has seen intense rain, sub-zero temperatures, and it shoots three-shot groups in a little better than an inch with 125, 150 & 165 grain Remington Core-Lokt. I have a pallet load of this ammo because when the local department store decided they were no longer going to sell guns and I happened to be there when the sporting goods manager found this out. He got even with the decision buy selling me the ammo for $5 a box. A 30-06 will take down anything I’ll be hunting and in The End Of The World As We Know It (TEOTAWKI) scenario it has a good long range capability.
2) Remington Model 870 12 Gauge
The 870 is sixty years old and 10,000,000 have been sold. Let’s agree that the test of time has proven this gun to be list worthy. I don’t manage to shoot shotguns as much as I would like too but from skeet to turkey hunting the 870 will perform better than I can. The gun has a boatload of aftermarket products so it can be tricked out for any occasion.
3) Bushmaster A2 .223/5.56mm with a 4×16 Mil-Dot Sightron & a Leupold 2.5×8 VXIII
This gun covers a few bases for me. First, it takes me back to my Marine Corps days when an M16 hung at the end of my bunk. Second, it covers my varmint rifle needs. Third, I like the firepower, although the 5.56mm in my humble opinion is too small for the military. Four, you can get ammo at an affordable price. I have two scopes for this gun but the 4-16 is a little bulky so if it comes down to picking one it would be the 2.5-8 Leupold. I like the low power for the quick target acquisition and eight is enough power for me to hit what I need at a distance where the .223 power fades away to be useful.
4) Taurus Model 627 .357 Total Titanium, 4” Barrel
Oh boy, I’m down to my last two choices and I’m getting a bit shaky. This is a light, accurate, seven-shot .357 Magnum I bought to keep on my hip when I hunt. Shooting a second box of 50, 158 grain loads takes some courage to fire the last shots because the recoil adds up. But you can’t have light weight and magnum power without a bit of recoil and this gun fits my hand as well as any revolver I’ve handled. This gun covers my bedside need, use in the field and the unbridled desire to have a wheel-gun on my list.
5) Kahr K9, Nickel Plated 8-Shot, 9mm
I’ll never forget my first day at the range with this gun. It was the first magazine and I was shooting at 15 yards with a buddy of mine who is a first responder. Seven shots into the target, the X-ring was obliterated. To confirm the one big ragged hole my buddy picked up my binoculars and said “It looks like one big hole. You put another in the bull and I’ll buy you lunch.” I shot the corner of the target taking out the very tip of the paper. He looked at me and said “You did that on purpose.” He was right, I did that on purpose and that is just how accurate the pistol shoots. He went out and bought one in .40 S&W.
The Kahr K9 gun meets my big enough/small enough criteria for concealed carry. It’s a bit heavier than I would like to carry at 23 ounces but the accuracy, and quality, makes it a worth while choice. I thought that my #5 would be my Sig P-232 in .380, but I want something stronger. My other contender was my full sized model 1911 in .45 but I wanted something smaller to carry. The Kahr also fills the need for home defense with the 9mm being my personal rock bottom for power level for this purpose. Yes, in a pinch I would use anything for home defense but I’m not being pinched.
So there you have it, my five guns. Now it’s time to hear from you. After all, I’m always looking to substitute one on my list for something you recommend. Make your case, and give me your five.