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Ladies Forum A place for our female Calgunners to discuss, share and interact without the 'excess attention' sometimes found in online forums.

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  #1  
Old 09-07-2012, 4:31 AM
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Default Would like some quick advice on bringing ladies to the range

I would like to bring a couple females to the range, including my mother. I was wondering if the ladies here had any tips to help me make them more comfortable. All of them are afraid of loud noises, exploding things, and would be skittish at a range. I'd like to help them feel more comfortable so firstly they enjoy the experience, but also remain safe (not dropping the gun, not having their wits scared out of them etc.)

This is my first time posting on the ladies forum as well so if I broke any rules by posting and being a male, or anything else please just delete this thread.

Thanks!

Last edited by canyon289; 09-08-2012 at 4:34 AM..
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  #2  
Old 09-07-2012, 5:05 AM
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Double-up on the ear protection
No high-heels
No cleavage
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  #3  
Old 09-07-2012, 5:29 AM
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Outdoor range is better. Indoor ranges will make the noise factor worse

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Old 09-07-2012, 7:11 AM
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Yes, outdoor ranges would be better from the standpoint of noise. Also, I've had ladies over the house first and got them familiar with handling the firearms safely. I used some dummy rounds. I would also recommend starting the live fire with a .22. And doubling up on ear protection is a good idea. No cleavage is good, too. You don't want an ejected casing going down the front of your shirt and lodging in your bra. Damn things are hot.
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Old 09-07-2012, 7:22 AM
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I concur with everything said. And will add, closed toe shoes.

If it's an outdoor range, I recommend making sure there are places to sit and bring plenty of water.
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Old 09-07-2012, 7:47 AM
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you, sir, are using this forum appropriately and i welcome you!

all good advise above.

definitely an outdoor range if you have access.
everyone should have ear protection...doubled is good...even if not shooting but merely observing. those industrial ones that you squeeze, put in your ear and expand are pretty good but having a real set over those would be better.
long sleeves, high cut tops, etc.

will you be shooting semi-auto pistols and revolvers? or just one?

if semi-autos, make sure to be familiar with techniques for women to make moving the slide easier. there are some good videos on youtube regarding that. rather than relying on hand size and strentgh to "power" the slide, utlizing motion to move the slide.

if revolvers make sure they are not lightweight or airweight! recoil will be a problem for a beginnger. also, start with a low caliber to allow each woman to become comfortable with the feel of a gun in her hand.... .22 comes to mind.

you are wise to want to make this a comfortable experience for them.

bring water and make sure to note where the restrooms are! most are near an entrance and away from the range....where one might find portapotties. know your range and let the women know so they can plan accordingly.
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Old 09-07-2012, 8:09 AM
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All good advice!!

Closed toe shoes and double ears and don't forget the eyes either.
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  #8  
Old 09-07-2012, 8:27 AM
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Double up on the ears, closed toe shoes, no cleavage.
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Old 09-07-2012, 9:34 AM
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Very informative, thanks ladies (and gents).
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  #10  
Old 09-07-2012, 10:27 AM
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Congratulations for using this forum the way it was intended. To ask women about women's reactions is a really sane thing to do. We have all had the experience your mom and the others will have.

First and foremost, only take them to the range if THEY want to do it. If you're making them, or trying to sell them on it, it won't work.

If you can get them to go to a one-day handgun safety course beforehand, do it. Pay for it if necessary. In most courses, they get a half-day classroom on safety, and a half-day supervised shooting at a range. It's worth every cent, even if they never get to a range. They'll be taught about proper sneakers, long pants, high necked shirt, eyes and ears, simple stance, how to hold a gun, how to hold it down range, etc.

(BTW, "doubling up ears" means using foam ear plugs under ear muffs. You can do it, but I don't like it. It makes me so deaf I can't tell when people are walking around behind me, which really freaks me out.)

By the time you actually get them out to a range, they will know to have eye protection, ear protection, high necked blouse (red-hot brass loves to jump down necklines. I have a scar to prove it.) They will have heard handguns go off up close and personal (only .22's probably) and know if they can handle the noise. My experience is that if I expect something to go bang!, I don't jump thru the roof. It's only when I'm not expecting it.

When you first get there, I'd sit with them near the range office for 15 minutes or so, with you walking them thru procedures, what a Range Safety Officer does, what a cease fire is, how to use a chamber flag, the price of tea in china, anything, just to get them used to the sights and sounds that are going on. Introduce them to the nice folks at the range office, who will generally make them feel warm and fuzzy as new shooters. Point out other women shooters who are around.

If they still want to go ahead, talk to the RSO in a cease fire, explain what you're doing and let him know he has two new shooters on his hands. My experience with RSO's is that they love new women shooters. (Really. You wouldn't expect it, but they're so tired of the 22 year old hot-shots who know it all...). I have my personal doubts about you handling two new shooters at once, never mind several. Unless you are an instructor?

I expect your new shooters will love it or hate it. Hardly anyone is so-so about it. But if they at least get over their fears and agree to come to the range even once more, you win! But don't force the subject.

All you are really trying to do at this point is to get them to make an educated decision about the sport and about being able to actually defend themselves.

This is really detailed, but learned at the price of making my own mistakes.

Good luck and well done, for wanting to help them out.
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  #11  
Old 09-07-2012, 11:09 AM
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Ranges are loud. So they might not hear your instructions well when you're there.
Therefore, go over all the safety details with them BEFORE you go. Tell them what to expect so they understand what is happening when a cease fire is called (for example) and what the regulations are.

Also go over the details about the guns you are going to bring with them at home. If they've never shot, show them how and how it works.

People are scared of guns because they don't understand them. When the understanding and comfort level is achieved, the fear will disappear too.
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  #12  
Old 09-07-2012, 12:11 PM
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I gently suggest also not referring to women as females in that context. Take some *women* to the range.
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  #13  
Old 09-07-2012, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StormRaven View Post
I gently suggest also not referring to women as females in that context. Take some *women* to the range.
Hey, at least he did not say "babes" or "girls"(unless they are young ladies) or "hotties" or 'chicks". LOL
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Old 09-07-2012, 12:33 PM
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This may go without saying, but I'll say it anyway. It saves a lot of nervous tension if you position yourself slightly behind the shooter's gun side shoulder and be ready to press on their shoulder or finger block the barrel if they start to turn around with the gun in their hand. I pretty much expect it with new shooters until they get reminded a few times. It will be an exciting time and people sometimes don't think clearly when they are excited.
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Old 09-07-2012, 12:55 PM
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Ill just offer one minor tip:do not pressure your lady friends to shoot. Once they see everyone having fun shooting ,even an anti-gun visitor will want to join if only to see what the fuss is about. I brought a friend and his wife to the range once, and his wife was adamantly opposed to shooting. I didn't say a word to her, I merely bought an extra 50 round box of ammo and went to the line with her husband.

By the 2nd Magazine she was begging me to walk her to the firing line. I mention this point because between now and range day your friends may get cold feet, and pressuring them to shoot only makes things more awkward than they need be.
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  #16  
Old 09-07-2012, 3:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StormRaven View Post
I gently suggest also not referring to women as females in that context. Take some *women* to the range.
You rock Raven! I was going to say something but....

This 'female' thing is a LEO/military thing that just makes me nuts. "Women" is a preferable term.

But the OP made a good post, with an honest question. Well done
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WHAT I HAVE LEARNED SO FAR, MOSTLY THE HARD WAY
• Do only safe sex. Never have sex with someone crazier than you are.
• Don't marry or move in together before you're both at least 25.
• Don't have children until you're married five years or at least age 30.
• Put 10% of your salary into savings every month no matter how broke you are.
• Don't ever screw around with the IRS.
• Keep a handgun on your bedside table.
• Don't smart-mouth judges, or cops who stop you on the road.

Last edited by BonnieB; 09-07-2012 at 3:45 PM..
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  #17  
Old 09-07-2012, 4:01 PM
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Based on my first experience with taking the wife, the sounds of hi power rifles directly next to them will unnerve them more that their handling a weapon for the first time.

Pay for two frames and position yourself accordingly.

After about 1.5 hours, she was putting 22s within a 5 inch circle at 100 yds. Started at 25 to 50 to 75, etc.

Build up their confidence.

.
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Old 09-07-2012, 4:13 PM
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The range is my time! Wouldn't bring any girls, I have much more funn with just the boys shooting and talking about girls...
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Old 09-07-2012, 4:22 PM
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Quote:
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The range is my time! Wouldn't bring any girls, I have much more funn with just the boys shooting and talking about girls...
And then you come along and ruin it....
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Old 09-07-2012, 4:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Bugguts View Post
Hey, at least he did not say "babes" or "girls"(unless they are young ladies) or "hotties" or 'chicks". LOL
Yeah, I had no problem with "ladies". It's far step above those that choose to minimize women by calling them "girls".
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Old 09-07-2012, 5:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trew10 View Post
The range is my time! Wouldn't bring any girls, I have much more funn with just the boys shooting and talking about girls...
Yeah it would suck really bad for you if they came with and outshot you when it's 'boys time'.

Apparently you missed the part of the OP's post where one of the ladies is his mom. He's being a good son also trying to broaden support for the 2A community by introducing non shooters to guns. Too bad the community is filled with this type of ignorant thinking.

If you want boys night out, fine and have fun. But don't discourage broadening 2A support and ownership. The OP is taking the first steps in doing just that and I salute him.

Ironically ALL of my shooting buddies are men so far. I will be very clear that NONE of my shooting buddies are ignorant little boys and they can talk about girls all they want. Hell I usually am the one bringing it up. I have more fun with my 'friends' regardless of gender. If you can't be yourself around a friend (female or not), then sounds like it's not a real friend.
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Old 09-07-2012, 5:31 PM
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long socks especially if wearing flats or any kind of show where a shell might drop into. My girlfriend has a nice burn mark were a .22 shell decided to dive.
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Old 09-07-2012, 6:08 PM
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I recently took my niece to the range, but the evening before we went., I had her read the HSC gun safety course. Afterwards I went over the Golden Rules :-) she did well and had fun and we had a blast.
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Old 09-07-2012, 6:09 PM
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No cleavage is good, too. You don't want an ejected casing going down the front of your shirt and lodging in your bra. Damn things are hot.
Ha, too true. Seen it happen.
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Old 09-07-2012, 6:41 PM
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i see i missed out on all the "funn"......
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Old 09-07-2012, 6:55 PM
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No cleavage
No open toed shoes
No front buckles on bra straps (if shooting shoulder fired guns with recoil)
Don't be embarrassed when one or more of them out shoots you-Women who want to shoot are often better than the guys who think they can shoot
Bring extra hats, sunscreen, bottled water, TP (you never know) and munchies
DO NOT be an azz by trying to be funny and slipping a magnum shell in with low powered rounds
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Old 09-07-2012, 6:59 PM
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I will add to the sage advice above... Go on off hours non primetime not on the weekends. For Me that is before 4 pm M-thu. Nice and quiet time at the range. Once comfortable to the firearm... go for Friday Saturday for the excitement of the comeraderie of the Range. Just my .02
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Old 09-07-2012, 7:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSACANNONEER View Post
No cleavage
No open toed shoes
No front buckles on bra straps (if shooting shoulder fired guns with recoil)
Don't be embarrassed when one or more of them out shoots you-Women who want to shoot are often better than the guys who think they can shoot
Bring extra hats, sunscreen, bottled water, TP (you never know) and munchies
DO NOT be an azz by trying to be funny and slipping a magnum shell in with low powered rounds
From experience?
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Old 09-07-2012, 7:19 PM
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From experience?
I've worked at a range and seen it done way too many times. There's nothing worse than an azz turning an interested new shooter OFF to shooting.
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Old 09-07-2012, 7:44 PM
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Quote:
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I've worked at a range and seen it done way too many times. There's nothing worse than an azz turning an interested new shooter OFF to shooting.
Yeah, had that happen with an "introduction" to sky-diving. I was only up to take pictures and got told to wear a chute "just in case" After I kicked the guy in the nuts, I never talked to him or any of our "friends". "But it's what we do to all newcomers" Kiss my ***!
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Old 09-07-2012, 11:51 PM
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Time for serious discussion. (Little boys, your mommies are calling you...)
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WHAT I HAVE LEARNED SO FAR, MOSTLY THE HARD WAY
• Do only safe sex. Never have sex with someone crazier than you are.
• Don't marry or move in together before you're both at least 25.
• Don't have children until you're married five years or at least age 30.
• Put 10% of your salary into savings every month no matter how broke you are.
• Don't ever screw around with the IRS.
• Keep a handgun on your bedside table.
• Don't smart-mouth judges, or cops who stop you on the road.
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Old 09-08-2012, 8:05 AM
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Bonnie,

How is anything in this thread "off topic"? BTW, how did you know my 69 year old mommy was calling? Her and dad are planning to drive down from the Bay Area next weekend and will probably meet my wife and I at Oak Tree to break some clays. Wanna come down and be the fifth on our squad?
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Old 09-08-2012, 8:13 AM
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Originally Posted by redhead View Post
No cleavage is good, too. You don't want an ejected casing going down the front of your shirt and lodging in your bra. Damn things are hot.
I think we've all had this experience. It only takes once. I had a burn that resembled the mark of Zorro for about a month.
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Old 09-08-2012, 8:16 AM
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Don't *just* hand them .22's. IME Ladies never appreciate being thought of as weak and appreciate being treated that way even less. They're just as capable of shooting a 38/9/40/45 as any guy. Match the gun to the shooter rather than sissifying the available assortment. If you don't have a gun that's appropriate, borrow or accept the great reason to purchase another. Every lass that's been shooting with me seems to love the .30M1 Carbine.
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by spamsucker View Post
Don't *just* hand them .22's. IME Ladies never appreciate being thought of as weak and appreciate being treated that way even less. They're just as capable of shooting a 38/9/40/45 as any guy. Match the gun to the shooter rather than sissifying the available assortment. If you don't have a gun that's appropriate, borrow or accept the great reason to purchase another. Every lass that's been shooting with me seems to love the .30M1 Carbine.
Yayyy Spam! Well said. I shoot .40 cal and am about to move to .45. And I have girlie hands.
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WHAT I HAVE LEARNED SO FAR, MOSTLY THE HARD WAY
• Do only safe sex. Never have sex with someone crazier than you are.
• Don't marry or move in together before you're both at least 25.
• Don't have children until you're married five years or at least age 30.
• Put 10% of your salary into savings every month no matter how broke you are.
• Don't ever screw around with the IRS.
• Keep a handgun on your bedside table.
• Don't smart-mouth judges, or cops who stop you on the road.
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  #36  
Old 09-08-2012, 11:27 AM
katokat katokat is offline
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Agree, but I think it's best to at least start with a .22 and move up as they get comfortable. I took some friends (men and women, all brand new shooters) to our range and went through all the pistol calibers (revolvers too). It helped to tell them what to expect and have them dry press first. They each liked different guns, but the big hit of the day was my husband's AR in .22LR. Second was the 9mm M&P. .22 Ruger not so much.
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  #37  
Old 09-08-2012, 5:28 PM
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kaligaran kaligaran is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spamsucker View Post
Don't *just* hand them .22's. IME Ladies never appreciate being thought of as weak and appreciate being treated that way even less. They're just as capable of shooting a 38/9/40/45 as any guy. Match the gun to the shooter rather than sissifying the available assortment. If you don't have a gun that's appropriate, borrow or accept the great reason to purchase another. Every lass that's been shooting with me seems to love the .30M1 Carbine.
THIS!!!!

My first gun was a 12 gauge when I was 12 years old, 5'3" and 100 pounds. The gun was 1/10 of my body weight.
I was the captain of the school's skeet team the following year and had hit my full imposing height of 5'5" 120 pounds.

I'm not too sure why everyone goes for the 22 first. There was a new shooter (friend's girlfriend) that came to the range 3 weeks ago.
She laid her Louis Vuitton bag off to the side as she was flinching with every shot made at the lanes. I was like 'here we go...' Boy was I wrong.

My friend handed her a 22LR. She put 2 rounds through it, shrugged and looked at the 44 Desert Eagle and said 'THAT ONE!'.
She put a mag through it and her eyes were as big as her smile.
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  #38  
Old 09-08-2012, 6:14 PM
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stacym stacym is offline
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I agree with the advice posted so far. I like the idea of starting them with .22, then moving to other calibers if/when they're up to it. A friend from work wanted to introduce his wife & mom to shooting. He only had his .40, so I met them @ the range w/ my .22, .380, 9mm assortment. I'm glad we did that, because, while his mom was a natural & wanted to try all the different guns, his wife was more intimidated, didn't like the noise, and after a mag through the 9mm decided to stick w/ the .22 for the remainderof our range time. If we had only had the .22 or he had only had his .40, I believe either wife, mom, or both would've had a lesser experience.

Good luck w/ your range trip! I also suggest starting with easy targets - set them up for success!
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  #39  
Old 09-08-2012, 7:54 PM
vmcdonnell vmcdonnell is offline
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My first shot at the age of 16 was a .38 then a .45 in the same afternoon. Since then it's been all larger calibers and only recently did I shoot a .22 for some cheap shooting; first my mom's pistol that my dad bought her, then hubby's new Ruger SR22. I never got the whole "start them with a .22" thing either. I think if you start a bit bigger and they know what to expect, it won't shock them as much as one might think.
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  #40  
Old 09-09-2012, 8:10 AM
XDJYo XDJYo is offline
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Hi All-

I hope you don't mind me jumping in on this thread.

I am a newbie to guns, having taken a pistol safety course early this year and now a proud owner of a 1911 in .45 (is there any other? ).

When I brought the pistol home, the wife was kind of surprised! I've been to the range only a few times by myself, but I strongly suggested that my wife become familiar with the safety discipline and how to handle it. I gave her the option to see if she wanted to come out with me. Surprisingly, she said YES! So, we headed to a safety class at a LGS and then signed up for a private instruction class with range time. She shot a .22 Ruger Mark III? Not too bad, did quite well and got comfortable with the loud noises and being out there with others.

This past weekend, I wanted to take her out to an outdoor range just so she can get familiar with where I went to shoot (Livermore). Didn't pressure her, but she (again) wanted to shoot! She actually asked me if she could shoot my .45! She was a little intimidated by it, because it's a FORTY-FIVE!!! (as I was when I first shot one).

We spent some time at home going over safety again and also range etiquette and what to do when/where etc. Once we were up on the line, we spent about 15 minutes dry firing and getting her used to the lane and the pistol again. Then, she took her first shot! MAN! The pistol about flew out of her hand! Fortunately, I remembered another CalGunner's advice and only loaded one bullet. My fault-I didn't prepare her for the recoil... After that though, she was much better! She put about 15-17 rounds down range in an hour. First shot was in the black. Her final mag of 4 shots all on the paper and down about 7 o'clock.

In my case, I am fortunate that my wife wanted to come out. I previously mentioned that I have fun out at the range, but it would be better if I could share it with her. I never pressured her and let it be her choice. I gave her several chances to back out if she wanted too.

Anyways, just wanted to post our experience and hope you all don't mind me posting this.

Happy Hubby!
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