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aeschylus's avatar

How do you store your firearms in your home?

Asked by aeschylus (665points) March 1st, 2010

What is a good way to store a firearm used for home defense. They always say to store the ammunition and weapon separately, especially in a household with children. However, the gun must also be easily and quickly accessible in the event that it needs to be used. How do you store your firearms; what is the best balance between safety and emergency preparedness?

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29 Answers

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

Kids are explorers. They will find anything no matter how hard you try to hide them. The only way to keep your kids from getting to your guns is to lock them up in a gun locker and even then you can never write down your combination or leave a key anywhere.
I knew a friend who was in the Navy and when he was out on deployment, his wife slept with a loaded .45 under her pillow. I always thought the risk of one of his three kids finding that gun was greater than the risk of someone breaking into the home. To my knowledge, nothing bad ever happened, but the risk involved was high.

DrBill's avatar

Guns are stored apart from ammo, even though there are no kids in the house, except one. Which is loaded and in a lock box with a pushbutton lock.

TexasDude's avatar

I keep all of mine but one locked in foam padded cases.

My home-defense rifle is kept in my closet along with loaded magazines, but it is not stored loaded itself.

jaytkay's avatar

In my pants.

I feel safe if I have a pistol or two tucked into my belt. And a .380 at my ankle. If it’s a full moon, I wear a shotgun down my left pants leg. I walk a little stiff, but the ladies like it, if you catch my drift.

Ltryptophan's avatar

@Drbill the kid is in the box?

In my safe, loaded, no rounds chambered.

OperativeQ's avatar

Get a gun safe and keep one bed side with the ammo in a safe but reachable distance.

Berserker's avatar

If you don’t have kids, then you can probably store both weapon and ammo in the same and easy access to place, otherwise, as everyone says already, keep the items in a locked place, like a safe or something. Or keep it on j00 at all tymez
Granted that’s not very convenient if an opportunity pops up for you to need it, God forbid, but ain’t nothing a good baseball can’t cure…>_>

DrBill's avatar


It’s OK to put the kid in a box as long as they are loaded

Ltryptophan's avatar

My suicidal friend got to his Dads .45 after trying a every key in a hidden box with over a thousand keys on key rings while Mom was home napping.

Cruiser's avatar

Locked….and loaded

jaytkay's avatar

@Ltryptophan Yikes! When I was a teen, my neighbor and I would unscrew the hinges from his dad’s locked gun cabinet and go shooting. Great fun, but a miracle we didn’t hurt anybody.

@Captain_Fantasy has it right. Kids are explorers. If it’s not a safe, they will get into it.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Some are ready to go,some are not.If kids will be over,we take precautions.

trailsillustrated's avatar

in a safe with a combination in a room with an electronic lock on the door

ragingloli's avatar

In the trash can.

Lightlyseared's avatar

I don’t. I live in a civilised country.

aeschylus's avatar

@ragingloli, @Lightlyseared Human nature invalidates pacifism. As long as there are other people (and hostile animals) in the world, no one has any right to feel safe. Institutions who disarm you are certainly not going to change human nature either. Everyone is ultimately responsible for their own security, and of that of those they care for. To entrust one’s defense to someone else, or to an institution, is naive and stupid, in the strictest definition of that word. There is nothing wrong with being prepared, and anyone who would commit a crime with a gun of any kind is going to try to do it regardless of the laws or habits of a given state. You do your neighbors and family a disservice in being unprepared.

As for “civilized” countries, Switzerland, arguably the most civilized country in the world, has universal military conscription and one of the highest rates of gun ownership of any nation. Their stability, neutrality, and high degree of cultural refinement are not unrelated to those facts.

In the words of Rousseau: “I prefer liberty with danger to peace with slavery”

ragingloli's avatar

To entrust one’s defense to someone else, or to an institution, is naive and stupid, in the strictest definition of that word
No it is not. It is called division of labour. Everyone does it. We delegate the task of safety to police, firemen, ambulance and soldiers. We delegate the task of producing food to farmers, bakers, butchers, building to builders, science to scientists, medicine to doctors. We do this because these people specialise in these tasks. They will accomplish them with a skill, precision and consistency that, if we tried to do everything ourselves, we could not even begin to approach.
To entrust defense to someone specialised in that skill is the logical, the smart thing to do. Doing the opposite is what would be stupid “in the strictest definition of that word”. It would cause more harm than good.

_Jade_'s avatar

Fully loaded and within easy reach. There are no small children in my home, only adults, but I live in a rural area and my husband is an over the road trucker. As of right now, there are 2 escaped inmates in the area breaking in on elderly women and women living alone and beating them pretty badly. If someone were to break into my hiome, there is NO WAY law officials can get here in time to prevent myself and my daughter from being hurt and/or killed. Say what you will about guns, but if they are outlawed here, only the law abiding citizens will comply. People are naive to think that laws concerning guns are the ones which criminals will obey.

MissAusten's avatar

We don’t have any guns, and with three kids I don’t want a gun in the house. We’d have to store the gun in one locked location with the ammo in another locked location. I don’t see the point of having a gun if you can’t just grab it in the unlikely even you would need it. Even with everything locked up separately, I would not feel comfortable with it. One of my kids is notorious for being able to access things a kid his age shouldn’t be able to access. For example, when he was 18 months old, he managed to open a locking baby gate to get into the kitchen, pushed a chair to the counter, climbed onto the counter, took the children’s vitamins from the top shelf of a cabinet, opened the childproof container, and was about to eat them like candy when I caught him. All this in the time it took me to go pee right down the hall. Until he was 4, I couldn’t turn my back on him. I hate to think how much money we spent on childproofing our home. Each time we tried some new gate or locking system, he’d figure it out within a few weeks.

I grew up with guns, and know people who have kids and guns without any problems. It’s just not something I would want to do.

ccrow's avatar

@Symbeline my aim isn’t good enough to defend myself w/a baseball….

Ltryptophan's avatar

One day I wanna sound like aeschylus here.

jbfletcherfan's avatar

We have several locked in a gun safe…unloaded. We have a .22 revolver in the bedroom…fully loaded & ready to go.

CMaz's avatar

It all goes in the safe. One close at hand.

When kids are in the house. It all goes in the safe. One stays in the car.
Car is always locked. Always.

buck19delta's avatar

everything is locked in the gun safe…. EXCEPT the gun used for home protection. its in my nightstand, with a loaded magazine, and empty chamber. my kids have been trained for years about gun safety, and get to shoot all they want, and can touch guns just by asking. as a result they dont feel the need to ” play” with any gun they see. they know they had better not touch a gun without asking, but if in a situation where they do, they know how to be safe with it…..

i lock my bedroom door when i leave home and the kids are here, more for the fact another kid with no responsibility, or gun training, might come over and do something stupid. myself and all my brothers have had access to guns from the time we were little kids. we were taught what to do, and not to do. never had a problem.

aeschylus's avatar

This is all helpful advice. I’m especially glad to hear that education of other people in the house has worked for people, although I guess something always works until the moment it doesn’t work, if that makes any sense. Ideally, everyone would understand what the gun was for and would know not to play with it, but I get queezy thinking about that off chance that a kid’s desire to impress a friend or satisfy their curiosity would over-ride their good judgement. The risk is very high.

Education is the ideal situation because of what MissAusten brings up: that a gun isn’t much use in an emergency if it takes 4–7 minutes to prepare it to be used. I would like to just keep a few magazines with a 1911 .40/.45 hollowpoint in a bed-side table, or in a quickly unlockable box underneath the bed, but I would worry about a child getting into it, perhaps even especially if they were educated about it. Lots to think about.

aeschylus's avatar

@ragingloli I am familiar with the concept of specialization of labour. I responded to your dismissive attitude toward defense in the way I did precisely because I think your defense is an exception to the rule. Excessive specialization leads to an irresponsible relationship with your property and your fellow citizens. As Jade said, law enforcement is NOT going to arrive in time to help you. They can only help catch the criminal after-the-fact and collect evidence once the crime scene already exists.

Progress involves giving something up as much as it involves gaining something. There is always collateral damage. Division of labour is a great example of a typr of progress with significant tradeoffs. I personally wouldn’t give up my ability to defend myself, or my right to own information about myself (privacy), because other people, and especially institutions, cannot be trusted to help you, especially when you need it most.

Remember hurricane Katrina…

CMaz's avatar

Just remember. The person you shoot will ruin the rug. Makes sure you walk them to the kitchen before you pull the trigger.

If you can.

Ltryptophan's avatar

Crook would you mind stepping to your right three steps….smiiiiile. Cheeeese, BANG

CMaz's avatar


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