Firearm or update basic equipment?

Items to keep you alive in the event you must evacuate: discussions of basic Survival Kits commonly called "Bug Out Bags" or "Go Bags"

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itzybitzyspyder
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Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Fri Mar 29, 2013 12:18 pm

I've got $500 to spend and I can't decide whether to get a gun or new gear. I'll put my current in gear in (). I need a better sleeping bag(ww2 down bag), woodburning stove(esbit), collapsable bow(slingshot), cookwear(boyscout aluminum set), knives(kabar 1271, ontario 12' machete), porable saw(crappy corona folder). I don't have a gun and I want to get one, but I know I need better gear. I'm really at an empasse as to which to take care of first.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Boondock » Fri Mar 29, 2013 12:35 pm

I'd say make sure your finances, health, home, etc. are in order first. Then update gear and once that's done, evaluate your firearm needs.

The after-action reviews of most disasters, it seems, have few lessons learned involving firearms. I know, not sexy, but relatively true.

Not trying to nag. Personally, I'd like an to replace my kit with all new guns and gear, but I can do without, even in a zombie pandemic.

However, there's food in my fridge and basement, my doctor says I won't die anytime soon, and aside from my mortgage, I have zero debt.

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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by moab » Fri Mar 29, 2013 12:36 pm

What is your AO? You can get a decent bug out rifle for around a couple hundred bucks. Say a Mosin or Mauser. Or a shotgun. Or lesser expensive surplus pistol. And ammo is cheap for those. Then spend the other half on gear. The gear list you mention isn't that bad. What kind of pack do you have? What kind of sleeping bag/shelter?
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Fri Mar 29, 2013 12:48 pm

moab wrote:What is your AO? You can get a decent bug out rifle for around a couple hundred bucks. Say a Mosin or Mauser. Or a shotgun. Or lesser expensive surplus pistol. And ammo is cheap for those. Then spend the other half on gear. The gear list you mention isn't that bad. What kind of pack do you have? What kind of sleeping bag/shelter?
My tent is the SnugPak Ionisphere and my sleeping bag is a ww2 goose down mummy. The money is from my taxes and I always spend that on gear. I don't want to get a cheap gun and I have to consider ammo, the colorado bg check fee and range time. I might be able to talk my way into a discount since it'll be my first weapon, but I can't count on that. Edit: My pack is the molle2 acu ruck with plastic frame.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by TacAir » Fri Mar 29, 2013 1:15 pm

Beans before bullets.

Beans you can eat.

Glad to see you're getting a refund.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Fri Mar 29, 2013 1:21 pm

TacAir wrote:Beans before bullets.

Beans you can eat.

Glad to see you're getting a refund.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by 111t » Fri Mar 29, 2013 1:55 pm

You can easily make a wood burning stove or make an alcohol stove to upgrade the esbit.
http://www.backpacking.net/makegear/falk-woodstove/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Or there is always the option to make a small cooking fire.

I live in the Olean NY/Franklinville NY area... what's wrong with your knives? I will agree that the 18" ontario machete is better at chopping than the 12" The ontario spec plus line is a good series of basic, well made knives at value priced. The ka-bar zombie knives which started as made in tiawan, are now going to be produced here in Olean so that's always a positive development.

As far as cookware, I would recommend the MSR stow away pots. They're great bits of gear and not particularly expensive compared to a lot of the other backpacking gear. I've also been pleased with the texsport cooksets ive purchased over the years. You can find super deals on cookware by looking in places that you ordinarily wouldn't. A lot of regular cookware can be re purposed into backcountry gear. For years an aluminum grease pot sold at wal mart and kmart was the go to cookpot for many AT thruhikers.

Any progress on a limited budget should hold to a very strict return on investment. I would probably say that you should have at least one firearm, but you can find a used pump shotgun for a lot less than your overall budget. I think your best 'bang for the buck' (sorry :roll: ) is going to be a 12 gauge shotgun. You're options are limited, not only by your budget, but by the current market as well. Unfortunately.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by moab » Fri Mar 29, 2013 2:02 pm

itzybitzyspyder wrote:
moab wrote:What is your AO? You can get a decent bug out rifle for around a couple hundred bucks. Say a Mosin or Mauser. Or a shotgun. Or lesser expensive surplus pistol. And ammo is cheap for those. Then spend the other half on gear. The gear list you mention isn't that bad. What kind of pack do you have? What kind of sleeping bag/shelter?
My tent is the SnugPak Ionisphere and my sleeping bag is a ww2 goose down mummy. The money is from my taxes and I always spend that on gear. I don't want to get a cheap gun and I have to consider ammo, the colorado bg check fee and range time. I might be able to talk my way into a discount since it'll be my first weapon, but I can't count on that. Edit: My pack is the molle2 acu ruck with plastic frame.
Bolt action guns (if that is what you end up choosing) have not changed that much in many decades. Nothing wrong with a surplus bolt action gun. Most importantly the price is right. And they are very accurate. You can put a modern stock on one for cheap too.

I guess my comment is you have enough money for both. I'd buy both. And upgrade later if you need to. Or just get a gun. Your gear does not sound that bad.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by BigDaddyTX » Fri Mar 29, 2013 2:45 pm

Since you don't own a gun I'd probably go for one. It just really depends on what you want out of it. Going to the range a few times a year and then in a gun sock in the closet? Home defense? Hunting?

A Remington 870 meets all of those criteria, is well under $500 and ammo is still plentiful for 12ga.

A Ruger 10/22 is always a great starter gun, but .22 is kinda hard to find right now. However, once you get a box of 550 rounds, it's a reasonable amount until you can find the next box etc.

For $500 you can still find police trade in Glocks/M&Ps ~$450 last time I checked. You could certainly do worse but you'll have to wait and get on a few notify me/email lists to get one.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Girthquake » Fri Mar 29, 2013 2:54 pm

Normally I'd say get a gun without a second thought, but in this current environment $500 isn't going to go very far if you want a quality new rifle. Aside from the inflated price of rifles you must consider the unbelievably inflated price of ammunition at the moment. .225/5.56 can be hard to find, not to mention I've seen some running over 80 cents per round, I don't even want to guess what .308 would cost. I got lucky and found some 7.62x39 a couple of days ago for a good price, so I spent $275 on a 1,000 rounds. So reasonable price are still there to be had, but you have to spend a lot of time looking for them and be ready to jump on them when you see them. Twice I found simliar prices in my email alerts only to get to the sight and find them sold out 2 hours after I recieved it.

If I was to get a rifle right now I'd go for a Mosin 91/30, or maybe an M44. It's a good size caliber, ammo is still readily available for a reasonable price and the rifle will still be reasonable as well. Also there are stocks that you could modernize it with, but if you get one with a good stock I wouldn't worry to much about switching them out. The only real downsides are that it's a bolt action and the readily available cheap ammo is corrosive, so you would really have to get on cleaning it after every outing. If you need a semi-auto then this probably won't be for you, but they're still good rifles and really great for what you pay in my opinion.

As far as your other gear goes it seems to be good enough, but I'm no expert. But as other people in this thread have said food is more important then bullets and guns.

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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:03 pm

Stay the fuck away from a Mosin. $500 gets you into so much better. Seriously. Savage, Remington, and Winchester off the top of my head. Mosins are, despite what broke college kids on reddit will tell you, not first rifle material.

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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by majorhavoc » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:19 pm

Do an honest assessment of the kind of disasters that you feel present the most signficant risks worth preparing for. Maybe a decent generator is a wiser way to spend $500 burning a hole in your pocket?

Not as sexy I know, but rational risk assessment should always be the first criterion that governs your resource allocation for disaster prepping. Certainly not opinions you get off the internet from people who aren't intimately familiar with you, your background, skill set and most importantly, your personal circumstances.

Not that I always follow my own advice, mind you. :roll: But you asked, so that's how I'm answering this one.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:40 pm

majorhavoc wrote:Do an honest assessment of the kind of disasters that you feel present the most signficant risks worth preparing for. Maybe a decent generator is a wiser way to spend $500 burning a hole in your pocket?

Not as sexy I know, but rational risk assessment should always be the first cirterion that governs your resource allocation for disaster prepping. Certainly not opinions you get off the internet from people who aren't intimately familiar with you, your background, skill set and most importantly, your personal circumstances.

Not that I always follow my own advice, mind you. :roll: But you asked, so that's how I'm answering this one.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by moab » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:48 pm

Considering he needs new gear and a gun. And he says "...I have to consider ammo, the colorado bg check fee and range time." It might be best if he purchased a Mosin. Cheap ammo, cheap (yet rugged - despite what college kids on reddit might say) rifle and he still has money left over for transfer fees and range time. He can't blow his whole wad on a rifle with no ammo, no range time, no transfer fee (and no additional extra equipment he might be able to afford by buying a cheaper rifle).

I'm not saying the Mosin is the end all be all of bug out rifles. But for someone beginning without a lot of money it's a great start. And considering the quality of the gear he's dealing with now - he's running a "Mosin" level quality set up. Not a $2000 M4 type set up. Or even a Winchester, Remington or Savage. Have you priced those lately? Well into or over the $500 mark. Unless you buy used. The other suggestion though would be entry level Ruger hunting rifles. I think I saw those starting at $275 retail the other day. That might be an even better option.

Bottom line is you should have a rifle to match your gear if a firearm is important to you. I'm not even a Mosin fan boy. I much prefer old Mausers. But I can kill you with a Mosin just as easily as I could with anything else with iron sights. At reasonable iron sights distances. So lets not throw the Mosin out with the bath water for no other reason than you don't like what college kids on reddit might say. ;) It's a rugged bolt action rifle that has stood the test of time. And if your just starting out. Not a bad way to start. Get your feet wet. Decide what you like and don't like. And then purchase something a little more to your liking. Personally I think you should shoot for a semi auto rifle. But that's just me. Save up a few more hundred and get an AK or a low end AR. And call it a day. Upgrade your other gear later as you can afford it. What you have now will work. And in the end that is all you need. For now.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Boondock » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:58 pm

Now that I've read a bit more, I say $500 should get you a decent sleeping bag.

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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Fri Mar 29, 2013 4:05 pm

No, let's throw the Mosin out because it's an innaccurate piece of shit with corrosive ammo, an unuseable safety, and a reputation for getting the bolt locked up to all shit.

You appear to have no concept of firearm pricing. A Savage Edge runs about $300 after tax with a scope on it (in the youth combo) or optics ready. It is out of the box 10x the rifle a Mosin will be. Ammo is on the shelves at your local Walmart, noncorrosive, at nonstupid prices,a nd in calibers that don't kick excessively for a new shooter. Mosins are no longer on the street at $100. They run closer to $200. For that money, you can get a Rossi matched pair (one shotgun barrel and one rifle barrel) break action which will still reload as fast as the Mosin, or your can Pawn Shop for a decent lever or bolt action.

So yeah, lets stop recommending the worst milsurp rifle ever just because it's cheap and ammo comes in apocalypse proof cans, and price check before you say an entry Savage costs $550. Shit. $2000 for an AR? I wish I could still sell an AR for $2000.

Personally, I think OP might be best served in the mean time with a comfy .22LR and a nice sleeping bag. Not likely to need the gun, but it's fun and good practice, and squirrel hunting is a hoot. Beats the shit out of a Mosin for utility as well.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Fri Mar 29, 2013 4:08 pm

Boondock wrote:Now that I've read a bit more, I say $500 should get you a decent sleeping bag.
Funny, the thread on the Modular Sleep System is tilting my opinion towards gear. I saw a few on ebay in the $80 range. My sleeping bag was good when I lived in Missouri, but now that I'm in Colorado I'm having doubts as to it's ability to keep me warm.
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Boondock » Fri Mar 29, 2013 4:11 pm

itzybitzyspyder wrote:
Boondock wrote:Now that I've read a bit more, I say $500 should get you a decent sleeping bag.
Funny, the thread on the Modular Sleep System is tilting my opinion towards gear. I saw a few on ebay in the $80 range. My sleeping bag was good when I lived in Missouri, but now that I'm in Colorado I'm having doubts as to it's ability to keep me warm.
If you can score a three-piece MSS for $80, I'd pull the trigger. Any extra money can be spent on a decent ground pad and other shelter items. Used properly, the MSS should keep you warm in Colorado temps.

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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by ninja-elbow » Fri Mar 29, 2013 6:09 pm

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Unless you are looking at a cheap pistol you can get a deal on I'd just stay away from firearms right now. If you must I'd look at an H&R handi rifle in a cliber you can still find (like 12 guage or 270) and get good with that. Normally I'd say get a .22 lr but that ammo is invisible.

What would be the purpose of you wanting a firearm right now?
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Shado67 » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:38 pm

Gun!

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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Shado67 » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:59 pm

Gun! Fuckin gear is always available at walmart. You can upgrade that stuff 20 dollars a week. $500 to spend at once, get a gun. $500 paydays dont come along very often.

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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Fri Mar 29, 2013 8:14 pm

ninja-elbow wrote:MSS
Boots
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Unless you are looking at a cheap pistol you can get a deal on I'd just stay away from firearms right now. If you must I'd look at an H&R handi rifle in a cliber you can still find (like 12 guage or 270) and get good with that. Normally I'd say get a .22 lr but that ammo is invisible.

What would be the purpose of you wanting a firearm right now?
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by moab » Fri Mar 29, 2013 8:53 pm

itzybitzyspyder wrote:
ninja-elbow wrote:MSS
Boots
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Unless you are looking at a cheap pistol you can get a deal on I'd just stay away from firearms right now. If you must I'd look at an H&R handi rifle in a cliber you can still find (like 12 guage or 270) and get good with that. Normally I'd say get a .22 lr but that ammo is invisible.

What would be the purpose of you wanting a firearm right now?
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Re: Firearm or update basic equipment?

Post by Browning 35 » Fri Mar 29, 2013 9:10 pm

If you got the most out of your dollar you could do a bit of both. Get both a gun and upgrade your camping equipment.

Not all guns are expensive, for instance I picked up this Marlin Mod 75 for $75. There are .22 rifles just like it littering the gun shows, pawn shops, gun stores, flea markets and swap meets around here for roughly the same price. This one's a little nicer than most of those (they usually have some cosmetic problems), but they work.

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Normally .22LR ammo is readily available everywhere and it's cheap. That's not the case right now due to the panic, but prices are starting to come down and when they do it's an accurate rifle. You could always buy a little bit of ammo now at a slightly inflated price and then when it comes down buy more.

If you look around you can still find it. I've been buying it at a local place everyone else seems to have overlooked for some reason. If you're patient and persistent you'll find ammo. Ammo-bot or that Walmart App helps too.

Most disasters don't require the use of a gun at all and a .22LR isn't exactly on a showstopper, but this allows you to error on the side of caution both ways. You'd have a gun and get new gear. Most everyone needs a .22 of some kind too.

This is just a middle of the road option though and you may have your heart set on some other gun and not just *A Gun*.
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