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Posted: 5/29/2002 10:31:41 AM EDT
Here is my story:

I had never fired a real gun in my life.  The only thing I had ever fired was a wimpy 600fps BB air rifle.  My dad had an old (probably 60 years old) .22, but I never got a chance to fire it (I never really tried to find a chance either).  I didn't know anything about guns.  The only things I knew about guns were what I learned from games like Operation Flashpoing and Delta Force.  I didn't even know what a muzzle brake was or what a gas tube was.

My brother has a friend who has a dad who has guns and who knows someone who has a field that people shoot at sometimes, and one day my brother went with his friend and his friend's dad to go shoot shotguns and an AK-47 at that field.  When I heard about this, I was surprised; I did not know anything about my brother's friend's father having guns.  I suddenly really wanted to fire a gun.  So a few days later I went to a small indoor target range and rented a .22 and a shotgun.  A few days later I got a chance to go skeet shooting at the field.

Then a few days later, I bought an AR-15, joined a gun club, joined the NRA, and found this forum.  Now I'm hoping to someday (when I have some money to blow) get a nice bolt-action 7.62mm and perhaps a handgun.

I think it's intresting how I went from not knowing anything about guns to owning an AR-15 in about a week.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 10:35:54 AM EDT
I played with alot of toy guns as a kid. Now I'm a big kid with the real toys (can't afford FA yet but someday ...).
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 10:38:42 AM EDT
Excellent question!

I don't know!  Didnit have guns in the house when I was a kid.  Grew up in suburban NJ.  I remember shooting for NRA medals in summer camp when I was about 10.

Used to read about firearms off and on over the years.  I was always fascinated with the engineering, craftsmanship and art associated with them.

Finally went shooting with a friend and never looked back.  Thanks Dave!!!  Wherever you are.

The wife, kids, school and work cut into much of what would be shooting time.  I gave up hunting, but still shoot whenever I can.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 10:40:59 AM EDT
Excellent question.

For as long as I can remember, every single male role model I spent any time with was an avid shooter, from my father, to my uncle, to my grandfather on my mom's side.

Link Posted: 5/29/2002 10:41:03 AM EDT

I love stories like yours.  Glad your here!

My dad taught me how to shoot when I was 10 or 11.  My uncle and cousins would come out to our farm and we'd all shoot targets or bust clay birds.  Got my own shotgun for Christmas when I was 14.  Been hunting and shooting ever since.  Some of my best childhood memories are rabbit hunting with my younger brother on the farm.

Link Posted: 5/29/2002 10:42:16 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 10:59:59 AM EDT
unfortunately i grew up dirt poor, the only firearms around were a beat up 1903a3 (deer rifle) and a single shot 20 gauge,"guns are for hunting, boy, why waste ammo?" but i hoarded all of the old guns'n ammo and american rifleman mags from my uncle and read the crap out of them.  when i was 16 i got a used .22 that i shot the ever loving shit out of, but i didn't really get into weapons 'till i was about 19 and on my own, then there was no turning back!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 11:00:30 AM EDT
My father was a collector...so I grew up around it. I'll never forget the first time I went shooting, though...he took me, my little brother (I was around 5 at the time) and a friend of his to the local range, with a couple of .45's and some other things. I didn't know anything about guns (obviously), so Dad thought it was kind of funny that I asked him if I could go shoot his 1911A1. (Hey, a 5 year old with a .45? He musta thought it'd knock me on my ass [:)])

He got kinda suprised when the cans he set up at 10 feet started flying when I started shooting :) Never did knock me on my ass.

Fast forward 20 years (very dry and non-shooting years, unfortunatly), and now I own more rifles than I can count on both hands. (Well, almost ;) )

And there's still a few more I need to get...(what collection could POSSIBLY be complete without a Barrett .50 in it?! And I haven't even *gotten* to handguns yet!...)
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 11:44:58 AM EDT
I grew up hunting..Louisiana country boy..entered the army and got to fire some real
weapons. After a long dry spell, I bought a pistol[.38] and a rifle.. 10/22..I spent several months learning about why a bullet does what it does and how to drop one on a piece of paper..I bought more firearms--daisy bb gun and hasbro nerf shooter--and found this place....
Of course these names have nothing to do with what I really have......
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 11:52:43 AM EDT
due to my interest in history i got a Euroarms model 1861 springfield .58 cal blackpowder muzzleloader. it's a good place to start, since it emphasizes first shot accuracy. then a garand. next a 1911a1, then ....
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 12:00:47 PM EDT

Welcome to the club!  Be careful, though, it's addicting.  I own 9 firearms and intend to get more... Many of us here own more than that!  Also, mind your safety habits at all times.  Understand and follow all of the safety rules regarding firearms.  

I myself got started by shooting a few friend's BB guns, and once shot a friend's semi-auto .22.  I also took the Rifle Shooting merit badge when I was in Boys Scouts.  (three times)  I also shot a shotgun for the first time at summer camp.  (hit the first 3 out of 5 clay pigeons, too!)

When I was about 19, I bought a Marlin model 60 and used that for plinking.  About a year later, I bought a sporterized Lee Enfield in .303 British.  My first large bore centerfire.  When I turned 21, I bought a .45... it was a Llama, and after shooting a few hundred rounds, the extractor broke.  I offloaded that at a gunshow a couple years later.  Since then I've had a Walther PPK, a Beretta 92fs, but have sold or traded those.  I currently have a Springfield 1911A1 .45.  Several rifles, including an M1 Garand (my favorite rifle ever made) and of course, an AR-15.

My suggestion for a pistol would be either a revolver in .38 or .357, or a decent .22 semi auto or revolver.  Believe me, you can't stop at one.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 12:06:03 PM EDT
When I was a kid (alright, I refuse to grow up, so let's just say "when I was young"...) I ALWAYs read the Field & Stream and Outdoor Life magazines in the DOCTOR'S OFFICE-see if you find any of them in there nowadays-and was extremely interested in hunting. My father was not a hunter/outdoorsman. We moved to a neighborhood when I was 10 and I made friends with a couple of guys that were Boy Scouts (later Eagle Scouts) and they and their fathers were into hunting. They helped me along in my interest, and at 12 I begged and pleaded and got a H&R 20ga for Christmas. Hunted everything with that gun for years. Since then I've aquired 15 more, and I'm an addict, yes I'll admit it. Do I seek help? HELL NO!!
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 12:08:35 PM EDT
My dad taught me how to shoot when I was 8 with his old Franchi .22

12 years later... I have 8 guns of My own and Have the reciever to build my own AR


PS... I have a HOWA 1500 VARMITER Ordered and should be in anyday now.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 12:22:15 PM EDT
Well I was a hardcore hunter at first.  Then the more I got into it the more I realized [size=5]shooting is fun![/size=5]  I didn't progress quite as fast as you though.  
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 12:46:59 PM EDT
my girlfriend saved my rearend with a  2 1/2" S&W 66. we are attacked while we are making out in my old Oldsmobil parked in the back ally. [:D] That got me into shooting.

Just joking

Link Posted: 5/29/2002 12:56:42 PM EDT
When I was 5 years old I was in a Grant's department store with my parents and when my dad picked up a Daisy 'Beginners Rifle' which was basically a cheaper version of the Red Ryder with no forend stock and a smaller buttstock.  I put the butt to my shoulder, looked through the sights at something hanging on the wall, and haven't been the same since.

That was back in '75, but I still get the same thrill whenever I pick up a new rifle.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 12:58:35 PM EDT
 When I was six, a family member handed me a Colt Single Action Army and that was all it took. I wish I had that gun now along with the others that burned when my grandparents house burned down.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 1:12:01 PM EDT
Grew up in Western Maryland/ WVa area...   Grandfather was a hunter dad tried but wasn't real serious..  Always a rifle and shotgun in the house..  Started early with a daisy and got my first Stevens bolt action shotgun for my 12th birthday...   Just sorta always had guns since...   Been through more guns than wives... Didn't get into assault weapons until about a year ago...   Was in process of switching over to stainless/Poly in prepairation for possible full time motorhome life and discovered ARs..   Went crazy since 9/11..
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 1:14:56 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 1:19:39 PM EDT
Guns are in my genes. Everyone in my family have been into them as far back as we can remember. I grew up running around in the California foothills with my .22. For a brief period of time I turned my attention to women, chased them around until I ended up married, and now its back to guns. I've only really got into guns big again in the past couple of years... started with black-powder, then curios and relics... and now more modern items.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 1:23:36 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 1:38:21 PM EDT


I was extremely anti-gun. But when my political beliefs shifted, I figured I might as well learn what I was whining about all those years.

Now, I can barely reflect upon my former dispositions without wanting to vomit.

I only wish I didn't waste so much time being a complete moron.

Link Posted: 5/29/2002 1:41:49 PM EDT
The first gun that I could call mine, I won, in highschool no less.  

The high school was selling magazines to support the FFA and first prize for selling the most magazines was a .22 Marlin semi auto with a scope.   I hustled for a month, sold the most magazines and won the gun.  I still have it.  Killed a lot of squirrels with it too.

I think this means that I am old?
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 1:49:59 PM EDT
My Dad was in the Army for 27 years.
one time he took me to the range when they were doing m60 qualifying when I was 6 or 7 years old
and I was never the same again.
the best part was when I was in high school and my dad was teaching opposing forces to the boots in Alabama I got to shoot every thing the Russians had at the time from 14.7mm HM on down.
I have about 25 guns now and I seem to add about 1 or 2 a year now.I don't even want to think about counting the ammo!
You should have been in my scout troop we had all active duty army and USMC Dads for scout leaders.
its no wonder boot camp was so easy.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 2:03:47 PM EDT
I grew up around guns. I am from  New Mexico and my father and his family have always used guns around the ranch they had. Mostly 22s, model 94 30-30s and a few pistols.

My grandfather on my mom's side was a gunsmith, and I can remember seeing a rifle rack with at least 20 rifles in every closet in his house. He used to build match rifles at Ft. Benning GA. when he was an armorer for the army. He even went to Helsinki, Finland in 1959 with the American team to the Pan-American Games. He went to make sure their rifles and pistols were in winning order.

I got my first shotgun when I was 11, and have been shooting ever since.

Link Posted: 5/29/2002 2:13:52 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 2:32:02 PM EDT
First learned to shoot at around age 11, at Boy Scout summer camp.  Did that once every summer for 6 years.

Then, about 4 years without any shooting.

Got a job, had a lot of money to play with (for a short while, anyway), thought it would be a good skill to re-learn, so I bought myself a pistol and went to some classes.

I now spent most of my meager fortune (having returned to the life of a college student) on shooting, and taking curious and/or uninformed friends out to the range to show them what it's all about.  I will also be instructing at the same camp I first learned at this summer.  Just seems like the right thing to do.  [:)]
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 2:45:05 PM EDT
I grew up with my grandparents. My grandfather was an avid small game hunter. Rabbit and squirrel were frequently on the menu. He got me started shooting a BB gun and later a singleshot .22. Unfortunately he died when I was nine. Money was tight and I couldn't afford any other guns as a child.

When in college and medical school I heard a lot of anti-gun BS. At times, I regret not being more vocal in supporting the Second Amendment. When I was in my Residency, I had a little more free time and a little more money. I bought a Browning High Power, my first pistol, and began to shoot informally at the local indoor range.

In 1996 Oklahoma passed a concealed carry law and I got my permit that first year. At that time, I became more serious about shooting and attended some local handgun courses. In 1999 I found IDPA and joined a local gun club. I make an effort to shoot at least two matches a month. Some of my friends at the local IDPA meets are into rifles and that is how I got into AR's and AK's. If don't shoot at least 500 rounds a month I feel deprived!

Link Posted: 5/29/2002 2:47:16 PM EDT
Fired a handgun once when I was about 18 or 19.
Didn't fire another round until they taught me about the evil black rifle in the U.S. Army. They brainwashed me...
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 2:57:22 PM EDT
I didn't care for guns all that much , and was sort of a weenie liberal till someone tried to force their way into my apartment when I wasn't home, and didn't stop trying even when my fiance started screaming. They eventually gave up. Cops took 15 minutes to get there.

That next paycheck I bought a Ruger P89 9mm. I been adding to them ever since. I didn't really want a rifle until Herr Klinton decided I shouldn't oughta have one. So I bought a Mini-14. When my gramps died I got some of his sporting guns, and traded those into a 10/22 and a 870P Express Magnum. In the intervening years I have added an Enfield, a Glock 27 (both since sold), a Ruger KP97, an AR15, and an HK91.

I am a member of the NRA and GOA, and make a point of taking my hoplophobe friends shooting whenever they want, as a challenge. I have saved several lost souls from the Dark Side this way. I do not hunt, but I do shoot for self-defense, recreation, and various God Forbid eventualities I care not to elaborate on.

2nd Amendment... the teeth of the other nine.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:10:12 PM EDT
I grew up in New York City, of all places. I was raised to think that guns were bad -- more by my environment than my parents. Then, one summer at camp, one of the activities was target shooting. I got my hands on a bolt action .22 rifle for the first time in my life and I thought, "This is really cool." I couldn't tell you anything about that particular rifle. All I know is that I could put holes in a piece of paper that seemed very far away. I must have been about eight or nine years old and I was completely hooked. For the life of me, I couldn't figure out why anybody would think that this was a bad thing. Any time there was a choice between anything and going to the rifle range, I was at the range.

As I got older and left NYC, I started buying guns when I could. The major downside is that I look at everything in terms of firearms (i.e. if I skip this meal, I could buy another box of ammo; if I don't buy a new computer, I can buy a new gun).

I've been doing my damndest to do for others what that camp counselor did for me by introducing me to the joys of shooting. While sometimes it can be an uphill struggle to change the mindsets of people entrenched in their ways, the victories I've experienced make it worthwhile.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:10:45 PM EDT
Dont know really, as far abck as I can remember I always had a what some call an extreme fascination with anything that blew stuff up, destroyed stuff, made lots of noise, and had ANYTHING to do with army men.

Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:15:25 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:19:07 PM EDT
During WWII my father was fifteen when the Germans invaded Greece. At the time Greece had strict gun control laws. Thanks to those laws he watched as the Germans killed his parents with minimal resistance from the unarmed civilians. He subsequently spent the rest of the war as a partisan shooting Germans until war's end.

After that, he vowed never to let something like that repeat itself. He therefore brought us up with firearms as an integral part of our lives. He taught us to respect firearms, how to shoot and maintain them, and, most importantly, taught us how firearms are an integral part of a democracy..
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:27:43 PM EDT
I grew up in Alabama and when I was 12 I just wanted a BB gun because they were cool.  My dad being ex Army from the Korean War was very strict in enforcing what was correct and what wasn't.  Practice practice practice, know your target and never ever point at anything you do not intend to shoot/kill.  Simple rules but very effective.  Taught me respect and gave me a good foundation for general firearms care.  My dad always wanted me to go into the Army or someother branch of service but when I was 12 I was diagnosed with Type I diabetes so that killed the path for military service...oh well.  At 13 my father died.  I still shot my pellet rifle because I liked it and I was a good shot.  When I entered highschool I decided to enter the JROTC program to see what it was about and probably somewhat for my dad.  As soon as I got into JROTC I decided I wanted to try for the rifle team (.22 NRA stuff)  I was a natural to an extent and I fired varsity for 4 years becoming captain and also later becoming the JROTC Battallion Commander.  No possible military career for me but I enjoyed the precision and control that comes out of competitive firing.  I don't shoot a lot now but I enjoy it and plan on starting back.  I just wish that my dad had been around when I was competitive.

Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:40:12 PM EDT
I've been shooting since I was 11, my grandfather taught me. I started with a red ryder, then worked my way up through CO2 semi auto rifles and pistols (crosman), then a .22 rimfire bolt action (marlin 880). My dad got an AR after 9/11 and made the mistake of letting me shoot it a few months ago. since then I've been putting every cent i have into acquiring one of my own (maybe the end of summer)... those of you that have kids, did u introduce them gradually, over years, or just wait till they hit the right age and let them shoot whatever they wanted from your collection?
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 5:56:21 PM EDT
I grew up in rural (real rural) Alabama and can't remember when I didn't shoot a gun nor when when I couldn't drive a car.  Although I can well remember not being able to reach the pedals on a car and shooting my first 12 gauge shotgun at about eight or nine.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 8:59:14 PM EDT
My dad taught me how to shoot when I was 8 years old. It was a Marlin 39A lever action .22 that I still have. Later, I moved up to a 12 gauge shotgun, a .22-250, and a .30-06, and I still have all of those, too. (treasured firearms that I will NEVER part with).

My obsession has grown to include many handguns and "EVIL" assault rifles. And with my 31st birthday fast approaching, I'm very close to making my first Class III purchase, a Vector UZI.

Check out:
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 9:08:10 PM EDT
[size=5]I was born with a pair![/size=5]

Thus, the interest in EBG's occurred quite naturally.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 9:17:27 PM EDT
My first rifle was a Stevens Model 120 .22 cal single shot, got it when I was 7 on my birthday and still have it (My Dad cut the stock down so I could Shoot it) I vigerously defended our property against all creatures be they fowl or fawna. I just hope my kids can do the same...
Link Posted: 5/30/2002 3:13:11 PM EDT
Learned to love accuracy and marksmanship with my dad's old .22 from a young age.  The hobby grew on me quickly.
Link Posted: 5/30/2002 7:35:17 PM EDT
During WWII my father was fifteen when the Germans invaded Greece. At the time Greece had strict gun control laws. Thanks to those laws he watched as the Germans killed his parents with minimal resistance from the unarmed civilians. He subsequently spent the rest of the war as a partisan shooting Germans until war's end.

After that, he vowed never to let something like that repeat itself. He therefore brought us up with firearms as an integral part of our lives. He taught us to respect firearms, how to shoot and maintain them, and, most importantly, taught us how firearms are an integral part of a democracy..
View Quote

Your dad is a real hero.  He endured a horrible tragedy and instead of withdrawing, he stepped up and did the right thing.
As for me, it's genetic.  My dad used to shoot a 105mm M60.  I already had the gun bug by the time I was born.
Further evidence that it's genetic:  My son (now 7 years old) used to chew bread and pancakes into gun shapes and shoot things.  This was about the time he turned 2 and had never seen a gun, never watched TV (except Sesame Street) and had never been to day care.  Now he's an excellent shot with the AR-15 and pretty good with my various 9mm's.  I'm so proud of that kiddo!
Link Posted: 5/30/2002 7:45:37 PM EDT
I was an Army brat surrouned by nice people with guns who taught me what guns where and what they should be used for, then I was an Army man surrounded by my fellow troops with guns training and then being deployed to the middle east for Desert Storm, then I was a civilian surrounded by a bunch of pathetic stuck-up whining middle Americans who didn't understand what guns where really all about and feared guns, something was missing... then I got a job as a TD for a production company (guy who makes special effects for TV and video) and now I'm surrounded by other TDs with mountains of flashpots, squibs, plastic guns, and the talent who always drop the plastic guns.

Needless to say I am a life member of the Way of the Gun.
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