Gun Storage and Children

Discussion in 'Training & Safety' started by Tackleberry1, Feb 20, 2012.

  1. Tackleberry1

    Tackleberry1 New Member

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    I'm putting this out there as food for thought because I see a fair number of people who are new to guns joining our culture and I notice that many of them have small children. While I do not support mandatory safe storage laws because every situation is different, I do personally adhear to safe storage 100% because my situation demands it. What works for a family may be ridiculous overkill for a single person, particularly a single woman so take this for what it's worth, apply common sence, and ensure that your situation is as safe as it can be.

    My wife and I are close to being done raising our first batch of kids. Our 19 YO son has moved out and our 16 YO daughter is currently a High School Sophomore. I began acquiring guns about 15 years ago when these two were quite small and though I could not afford the great big, wiz bang, fire rated, 10 bolt safe that's currently secured to the floor of my garage, I could certainly afford the $40 light gauge steel safe that I brought home fom K Mart to make sure the little ones could not get to the boom sticks.

    As the child deterant safe in the bed room closet gave way to the big dash safe in the garage, I aquired a quick access lock box, mounted to the bed frame, to house the home defense pistol and added a second lock box to the top of the master closet to house my CCW gun. This makes it easy to get my CCW in the morning without waking the wife and 1 or both little ones and ensures my wife is not defenseless while I'm away. Oh... And the big loud dog helps too.

    Like many of you, my gun collecting began at the same time I received my CCW and there in began a policy of "on my hip OR locked up". It did not matter that my handgun banged the kitchen chair when I sat down to dinner. If I was not prepared to lock it up for the night, it stayed on my hip until I was.

    About 5 years ago, to quote Marrisa Tomme in My Cousin Vinney, "the wifes biological clock started ticking like this"!

    Long story short we have since been blessed with a healthy 3 YO boy and a bouncing 10 month old daughter. So much for being done by 42.:rolleyes:

    I share this because the policy of positive control combined with a good dose of teaching with the help of Eddie Eagle have served to keep my family free of incident for 15 years. I hear quite a bit about multiple guns stashed around a home which may well serve someones sence of security but is advised against if there are ever kids present.

    We all keep guns so that should the worst happen, we have the tools to keep our families safe. Let's not forget that it is also our responsibility to keep the little ones safely separated from our tools.

    Be Safe.

    Tack
     
  2. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Tack- good post.

    While our kids have always been around guns, you do not leave steak knives on the coffee table when you have a 2 year old. Until they are old enough to understand, and have an attention span greater than a goldfish, you DO need a positive, physical control.

    There are many different safes and lockboxes made for securing firearms. However, I can remember having rugrats, tight money, and a lot of mac & cheese to make ends meet. Here are some ways to secure a gun without breaking the bank.

    1. Get an inexpensive safe. You can find a small one at Harbor Freight for under $50. look in American Rifleman for the sale ad, they run specials on them (or at least get the 20 off coupon from the ad). NO, it is NOT a great safe. NO, it is not fireproof. NO, it will not stop a professional jewel thief. But it WILL keep your 4 yr old from showing her friend how Daddy shoots, and it will slow down that 14 yr old punk from down the road that is rummaging thru the house.

    2. Lock it up. Literally. Many handguns can be secured with a padlock so they will not fire. Double action revolver- open cylinder, snap lock around top strap. Ruger 22 pistol? Pull bolt back, snap padlock through charging handle- will not go into battery Rifle or shotgun- many can be locked with a cable style padlock- open action, feed thru, snap lock- action cannot be closed. And threre are many purpose- built locks just for firearms.

    NEVER assume that you can put ANYTHING (gun, christmas present, your nudie mags) where the kids will not find it. That includes that shelf at the top of the closet, between matrress and box springs, etc.
     

  3. woody63m

    woody63m New Member

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    Most guns come with some kinda cable lock these days they give them to ya for a reason
     
  4. BallisticSurgeon

    BallisticSurgeon New Member

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    This is a fantastic post. I have a 2 year old and keep every gun locked up that isnt in my physical control. I bought a inexpensive 18 gun safe from Academy Sports and Outdoors and it works well at keeping my son out. Once he gets older he will be taught safety and respect of firearms.
     
  5. Vikingdad

    Vikingdad New Member

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    The most dangerous weapon on Earth is the human mind.

    What we did was as soon as the kids were old enough to be self-aware, we started teaching them the Eddie Eagle mantra with the additional element of adding some of the NRA Gun Safety Rules as we went along and as appropriate, starting with "Guns are ALWAYS to be considered loaded AT ALL TIMES! (as I recall it started around 2 or 3 years old). A year or so later we started testing them by placing an unloaded gun in an innocuous place where we could observe from a distance undetected and watch what happened. They without fail did as they were told and got an adult immediately when they spotted it. Never a deviation from their training. At 5 years old the eldest got a BB gun and was trained to treat it like a "real" gun (as was the rule with their cap guns and other toy guns before this. They were never allowed to "play" with guns, toy or not). At around 5 1/2 and 7 years old (2 boys, a year and a half apart) they were given a copy of the NRA Gun Safety Rules and told to memorize them. They were told that when they could recite the rules by heart we would consider taking them to the range so they could shoot with live ammunition. On the first day at the range (one at a time, the oldest first) the first thing they were told was that any serious violation of the NRA Gun Safety Rules would result in a minimum of one year without touching any guns, toy or real. There has never been a violation, serious or otherwise. If anything the boys are stricter on themselves than I am. That is pretty much how we did it in a nutshell.

    All of those years the guns were always locked up all the time unless they were in my possession. Now that the boys are teenagers they are allowed to handle them as long as they ask permission first. They field strip, clean, do modifications and all of that under my supervision. They are intimately familiar with the guns we have and they have become more responsible young men at least partly as a result of the responsibility we have given them with guns. Even my previously anti-gun parents are in agreement. My 81-year-old mother wants us to take her shooting for the first time in her life as a result of what she has seen in her grandsons and their safe handling of firearms.

    The biggest danger with children and firearms is curiosity. What we have done in raising our kids would not be appropriate for all children by any means. It is something we have re-evaluated every step of the way, questioning what we were doing and how with every day. It started from Day One with us. I suppose you could start later, but I would not know from personal experience. I don't imagine you could start after, say, age 5 but perhaps you could.

    Keep them (the guns) locked up, but train the minds as well.
     
  6. Durangokid

    Durangokid New Member

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    I agree children should be careful where they keep their guns. We know adults misuse firearms more than any other group.:rolleyes:
     
  7. fmj

    fmj Active Member

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    This!! Train 'em right, train 'em well and you will be rewarded. The re-evaluating is called raising a child...there is no be all end all scenario, its a fluid situation at the very least.

    My soon to be 13 y/o will call me out for the smallest of infractions of safety....makes me proud as this tells me i did SOMETHING right.
     
  8. Vikingdad

    Vikingdad New Member

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    At the same time you have to snuff out the reflexive "Don't tell me what to do!" response though. Sometimes it can be tough. The kids call me out far more often than I do them. OK, to be fair I can't think of a single time when I have called them out on safety issue.
     
  9. dks7895

    dks7895 New Member

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    Best answer so far. I was taught gun safety and respect at a very young age. I have carried this over to my own children. I also discuss it with their friends and parents. I have a safe and keep my guns secure. But knowledge is power. Curiosity is what kills the cat.
     
  10. fmj

    fmj Active Member

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    OH Man...i ALWAYS hated when dad pulled the "do as i say not as i do" card when i was young. So when one of the kids calls me out I usually say "Thanks" or "I was just testing to make sure you were paying attention". That one doesnt work so well anymore. :eek:

    The biggest one with my youngest is keeping thast damn finger off the trigger and laid up beside the stock until ready to fire....he's getting there tho. :D

    TRUTH!! I keep the safe locked...not from the kids, but from the neighborhood thugs.

    But in truth my kids are to the age i dont worry about it so much. (If they were the age of the OP i would sing a different tune) I leave a couple handguns loaded in pre-described "hidden" areas in the house that are easy to get to and the kids and wife all know where they are.

    My one buddy commented to another buddy after watching my youngest get after it on the range with the 1911 and the 686, "I would almost feel sorry if someone was dumb enough to break into THAT house." (everyone here KNOWS how to use EVERY gun in the house and use 'em well + 100lb lab with very BAD disposition if you do not belong in HIS house! :D)
     
  11. Gert999

    Gert999 New Member

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    I agree u can lock up ur guns all you want and you should. But the saying curiostiy killed the cat always applies. You have to teach them about saftey and respect of firearms. If they know all they gotta do is ask to go to the range or something they are less likely to try to get at em without you there. My 8 year old daughter got her first bb gun this year for x mas, we went thru 3 saftey books and talked a long time on what the dangers of mishandling firearms can bee. Back of one saftey book even had a contract i made her sign. So far she's been real good with it hope it stays like it. She's shot a .22 rifle so far as her only real gun and will problaly stay like that till she's 9. The one thing you gotta worry about is friends, i've let her know not to offer any of her friends to see the guns or anything like that. Told her if a friend is interested and they're Parents are okay with it i will see about taking her friend with to shoot her bb gun. Just be safe and careful thanx for the post guys one or two things in here i'll prolly end up useing myself.
     
  12. Vikingdad

    Vikingdad New Member

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    You bring up a good point that I missed. My boys were also taught that they are forbidden from bragging about the guns (or anything else for that matter!). I tell them the truth, that is if there is an accident involving firearms from our house I (and possibly mom) are going to jail for a long time and all of the guns get confiscated and they will probably be put into foster care. Always let them know the consequences of their actions. Don't sugar coat anything.

    Also, I did mention that my boys were never allowed to play with guns, toy guns or not. (the only exception is water pistols, but we seldom had any around that were not of the "Super Soaker" type which do not resemble firearms at all). Their cap guns and those sorts of toys were also treated just like real firearms at all times from day one. They actually took pride in the fact that when their friends wanted to play cops and robbers or some such they would say that they were not allowed to play with guns unless they didn't want to shoot real ones. Their friends were always envious of that stance. A couple of their parents would ask if they were allowed to shoot and I would explain all that I have here in my past post and they have asked if I would train their kids. My answer is that I would train the parents first without the kids and then we would see about the kids. A few took me up on it.
     
  13. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    i had that problem years ago with my wife. she was fresh from commiefornia and just learning gun safety. got fed up with her sticking her finger in the trigger guard. so i grabbed her hands. took her finger out of the trigger guard and bit her on the trigger finger.

    to this day she still hasnt stuck her finger in the trigger guard until ready to shoot.

    prolly wont work for kidlets tho...
     
  14. fmj

    fmj Active Member

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    LMAO!!!!!!

    Thats one way to get your point across!
     
  15. FAS1

    FAS1 Member

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    I agree that education is a big part of kids and gun safety, although kids are naturally curious and don't always do the right thing. With all the different products on the market today to help you secure your guns it seems like a no brainer to me for some of those to be part of the plan to keep kids safe. Most kids will make the right decision if taught, but a few will slip thru the cracks. Seems like safes and handgun safes are a good back up when things don't go exactly as planned.
     
  16. FAS1

    FAS1 Member

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  17. Buckethead47

    Buckethead47 New Member

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    When I got married my wife was iffy on guns so I left it at my parents. Then I've she was comfortable with the idea we had a kid. So she doesn't want me to keep the gun at home without a cabinet. Regardless of any other kind of safety devises. I have a cable lock for my 870. But I use that while transporting so ILL law won't hassle me as bad. I plan on teaching my daughter gun safety with my old bb gun but she is little far off from that.
     
  18. Tackleberry1

    Tackleberry1 New Member

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  19. Gert999

    Gert999 New Member

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    Very very sad... hell they give you a damn factory lock if nothing else you can spend 5 dollars at ur local F*#ing wal mart and get a cheap trigger lock!!!!!
     
  20. Buckethead47

    Buckethead47 New Member

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    I heard of guns going of of you smack the butt hard enough. I'm not sure about hand guns but heard that about long guns.