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Lidiya
06-04-2013, 12:53 AM
So in my novel, the father teacher his kids how to shoot a handgun. I have no experience in this so don't know how to appropriately write the scene.

How would someone teach another person to shoot? I imagine he'll tell them something about turning safety off and what finger to keep on the trigger, etc. I want it to sound like the father's a professional, so as clear and 'professional' it sounds, the better I guess :)

Any gun experts out here?
Thanks in advance.

Oldbrasscat
06-04-2013, 12:58 AM
Youtube is your friend on this one. There are a number of videos out there from registered firearms instructors that will give you enough information to make your scene believable.

slhuang
06-04-2013, 01:11 AM
This would ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS be first and foremost (from my Gun Basics for Writers (http://www.slhuang.com/blog/category/weapons-series/firearms-guides/gun-basics-for-writers/) series):

Rules of Gun Safety
http://www.slhuang.com/blog/2012/08/28/gun-basics-for-writers-the-three-rules-of-gun-safety/

He'd probably have them repeat these back to him several times before he let them pick up and handle a weapon.

He'd probably demonstrate how to load before he had them do it -- possibly he'd load himself and then unload and have the kids do the loading themselves. Possibly he'd have them load and clear the weapon before ever firing it, especially if it's a semiauto (is it a semiauto or revolver? Here's my Handgun Basics (http://www.slhuang.com/blog/2012/09/05/gun-basics-for-writers-types-of-firearms-basic-civilian-small-arms-part-1-of-2-handguns/) for the difference). He might have them name the parts of the gun to him first so they know the vocabulary, especially as they're kids.

One thing I notice in descriptions of gun teaching scenes is that the authors often depict the teachers as far more physical than I've EVER seen a gun instructor be (or that I've ever been, when I've instructed other people). It's easy to teach by verbal instruction and demonstration. He would probably demonstrate and describe stance, loading, and sighting and then have them do it, and correct as needed.

The safety rules linked above are the first, foremost, and, for many people teaching guns, the ONLY thing that matters. Accuracy is secondary. If you want to have him teaching them accuracy, you can have him instruct them on sighting, on slowing their trigger pull, on concentrating on grouping (are they in a range? In the backyard? In a post-apocalyptic world? This matters for how he might teach them). If they're having trouble with accidentally anticipating the recoil one common instruction technique is to load dummies in among the live rounds. This is getting kind of detailed, though. A first session, he'd probably have them load, fire, and clear, and then possibly teach them about cleaning the weapons, because first fun, then chores!

Oh, speaking of clearing the weapons, he would absolutely make sure they knew to clear the weapons and make them safe every time they finished shooting.

And don't forget eyes and ears! He would definitely make sure they were all geared up. At a range this is easy; if it's outside he would probably have them announce they were loading and make sure everyone had eyes and ears on.

Lidiya
06-04-2013, 01:19 AM
This would ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS be first and foremost (from my Gun Basics for Writers (http://www.slhuang.com/blog/category/weapons-series/firearms-guides/gun-basics-for-writers/) series):

Rules of Gun Safety
http://www.slhuang.com/blog/2012/08/28/gun-basics-for-writers-the-three-rules-of-gun-safety/

He'd probably have them repeat these back to him several times before he let them pick up and handle a weapon.

He'd probably demonstrate how to load before he had them do it -- possibly he'd load himself and then unload and have the kids do the loading themselves. Possibly he'd have them load and clear the weapon before ever firing it, especially if it's a semiauto (is it a semiauto or revolver? Here's my Handgun Basics (http://www.slhuang.com/blog/2012/09/05/gun-basics-for-writers-types-of-firearms-basic-civilian-small-arms-part-1-of-2-handguns/) for the difference). He might have them name the parts of the gun to him first so they know the vocabulary, especially as they're kids.

One thing I notice in descriptions of gun teaching scenes is that the authors often depict the teachers as far more physical than I've EVER seen a gun instructor be (or that I've ever been, when I've instructed other people). It's easy to teach by verbal instruction and demonstration. He would probably demonstrate and describe stance, loading, and sighting and then have them do it, and correct as needed.

The safety rules linked above are the first, foremost, and, for many people teaching guns, the ONLY thing that matters. Accuracy is secondary. If you want to have him teaching them accuracy, you can have him instruct them on sighting, on slowing their trigger pull, on concentrating on grouping (are they in a range? In the backyard? In a post-apocalyptic world? This matters for how he might teach them). If they're having trouble with accidentally anticipating the recoil one common instruction technique is to load dummies in among the live rounds. This is getting kind of detailed, though. A first session, he'd probably have them load, fire, and clear, and then possibly teach them about cleaning the weapons, because first fun, then chores!

Oh, speaking of clearing the weapons, he would absolutely make sure they knew to clear the weapons and make them safe every time they finished shooting.

And don't forget eyes and ears! He would definitely make sure they were all geared up. At a range this is easy; if it's outside he would probably have them announce they were loading and make sure everyone had eyes and ears on.

Thanks! In fact, I find the whole blog really useful. I should probably just get myself to a shooting range, but it's not very easy when you live in, uh, the UK where everything is banned.

slhuang
06-04-2013, 01:25 AM
Thanks! In fact, I find the whole blog really useful. I should probably just get myself to a shooting range, but it's not very easy when you live in, uh, the UK where everything is banned.

Oh, glad to hear it! :D

Yeah, personal experience is always best, but if you can't, that's what the Internet is for! :)

If you have more questions as you refine the scene, feel free to ask, or to post snippets of it if you want feedback on whether they make sense.

Dave Hardy
06-04-2013, 02:22 AM
I made sure my daughter pointed the rifle in the right direction.

thothguard51
06-04-2013, 02:31 AM
When I taught my son, the rules were mostly about safety, things like,

A firearm is not a toy...

Never ever point a gun at someone jokingly, even if you THINK its not loaded.

Safety on at all times until you are ready to fire.

Siri Kirpal
06-04-2013, 02:50 AM
Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

My father, a probation officer, taught me how to shoot a gun.

Neither he, nor my mother, would allow any of us to even point water pistols at each other.

So, safety first.

Make sure you've got earplugs.

And I'm not remembering much of the rest, except...

The police range where he taught us smelled of gunpowder. I hated the smell.

Blessings,

Siri Kirpal

cornflake
06-04-2013, 07:59 AM
Depends on the father, how knowledgable and how responsible he is. People think it's cool to hand kids guns and tell them nothing more than not to point it at people and where the trigger is. Others might require a full safety course, including dissembling, all parts, operation, things like what to do in case of hangfire, etc.

Canotila
06-04-2013, 09:17 AM
My dad always made us take them apart and clean them afterward. It was pretty effective in making us see them as tools/a tedious chore to be avoided vs. a potential toy.

Lidiya
06-04-2013, 11:39 AM
Hmm, thanks guys :)
Seemed like I'd completely forgotten to include the gun stripping and safety rules and just when straight to point and shoot!

Trebor1415
06-05-2013, 01:52 AM
I'm an instructor so this is right in my wheelhouse. I'm a NRA Training Counselor, which is the type of instructor who trains new instructors, and I was previously certified through the SigArms Academy as a law enforcement/security pistol instructor. I've worked with students ranging from complete noobs (how do you load the gun?) to experienced LEO and private citizen shooters.

Before I answer anything, a few questions:

In what way is the father a "professional" in regards to firearms? His background, training and experience will play a role.

A life-long hunter will approach firearms from a different perspective than a police officer. A soldier will have a different perspective from both of those as well. This includes how they were taught, what teaching methods they'd likely use, and how they'd approach teaching someone else.

Also, how old are the kids and would they have any previous experience with firearms? Or is the first time they've touched a gun?

Why is he teaching them? Just to do it because he thinks it's important, or because they asked, or because they have to fight off zombies?

How much time would they have? Days? Or just hours? How much urgency is involved? Is he teaching his daughter because her ex is stalking her, for instance, or just because he thinks it's something she should know?

How much space do you want to spend on this in the story and how much importance does it have?

Are there any particular character traits or character interactions you want to highlight with this scene? This would be a good opportunity to show how the characters relate, if the Dad can keep his temper when the rebellious teenage son screws around on the firing line, etc.

EDIT: A couple more questions:

What time period is the story set in? The views of firearms and safety rules prevalent today are different from those in years past. We have much more emphasis on things like always wearing hearing and eye protection than they had years ago.

Where is the story set? In the U.S.? What part of the country? If another country, what are there gun laws and how would the character have access to guns if the laws are strict?

jkenton
06-05-2013, 02:20 AM
Apologies if this has been mentioned, but if the teaching is in a non-emergency situation, (say, zombie-free) then the father might be inclined to start with a rifle. It is far easier to instill good habits regarding muzzle discipline with a rifle. Much easier to be aware of where a long gun is pointed compared to a pistol with a 3 inch barrel. Then you move to handguns, which are easier to be careless with. (Watch how often on TV people point their pistols at their fellow cops, soldiers, alien-fighting resistancy sorts, etc.)

Paint it Pink
06-05-2013, 06:46 PM
Ah the dreaded muzzle sweep, which I see all the time in movies. Drives me nuts as I was taught to drop my rifle whenever someone was about to cross in front of me that wasn't a target. And BTW this was just for a game with training weapons, not live firearms, but the principle is don't point at something you are not going to shoot at.

asroc
06-05-2013, 07:08 PM
Apologies if this has been mentioned, but if the teaching is in a non-emergency situation, (say, zombie-free) then the father might be inclined to start with a rifle. It is far easier to instill good habits regarding muzzle discipline with a rifle. Much easier to be aware of where a long gun is pointed compared to a pistol with a 3 inch barrel. Then you move to handguns, which are easier to be careless with. (Watch how often on TV people point their pistols at their fellow cops, soldiers, alien-fighting resistancy sorts, etc.)

Yeah, that's how my father taught me. He started me out with a rifle, he drilled the four rules into me, took a hunting safety course with me and made sure I knew how to clean, maintain, assemble and disassemble the rifle and how to clear a jam before he moved on to the actual shooting.
When he wasn't with me all guns in the house were locked up tight and he made it abundantly clear that I was never, ever to touch them without his permission. (Dad is otherwise pretty relaxed, so it made a big impression on me.) I was fifteen before I was allowed to shoot unsupervised and that's when he finally started teaching me handguns.

Trebor1415
06-05-2013, 07:08 PM
Ah the dreaded muzzle sweep, which I see all the time in movies. Drives me nuts as I was taught to drop my rifle whenever someone was about to cross in front of me that wasn't a target. And BTW this was just for a game with training weapons, not live firearms, but the principle is don't point at something you are not going to shoot at.

Tell me about it. Try being a firearms instructor. I still kept swept by my students from time to time even though I work hard to not let it happen.

What's even worse is working at a gun shop. I only did that for awhile but I was amazed how many times customers would sweep me with the muzzle. That's why I always cleared the gun before handing it to a customer and then watched them like a Hawk as long as they had it. If the swept me, and they were close enough, I'd gently point the muzzle in another direction if it stayed pointed at me.

I also refused to show more than one customer a gun at a time both for fire of theft (second guy could run off with the gun) or worries that someone might have a loaded mag in their pocket to load when I handed them the appropriate gun.

Lidiya
06-06-2013, 01:07 AM
I'm an instructor so this is right in my wheelhouse. I'm a NRA Training Counselor, which is the type of instructor who trains new instructors, and I was previously certified through the SigArms Academy as a law enforcement/security pistol instructor. I've worked with students ranging from complete noobs (how do you load the gun?) to experienced LEO and private citizen shooters.

Before I answer anything, a few questions:

In what way is the father a "professional" in regards to firearms? His background, training and experience will play a role.

A life-long hunter will approach firearms from a different perspective than a police officer. A soldier will have a different perspective from both of those as well. This includes how they were taught, what teaching methods they'd likely use, and how they'd approach teaching someone else.

Also, how old are the kids and would they have any previous experience with firearms? Or is the first time they've touched a gun?
The MC is 15 and her brother is 16. They don't have any previous experience.

Why is he teaching them? Just to do it because he thinks it's important, or because they asked, or because they have to fight off zombies?
Their father thinks something is wrong with the place they're moved to (after their house is destroyed), so he decides to teach them how to use something that could harm them.

How much time would they have? Days? Or just hours? How much urgency is involved? Is he teaching his daughter because her ex is stalking her, for instance, or just because he thinks it's something she should know?
He's giving them like a crash-course. So not a lot of time, maybe a night.

How much space do you want to spend on this in the story and how much importance does it have?
Maybe a chapter? Or half. It's important because the MC later picks the gun up to defend herself.

Are there any particular character traits or character interactions you want to highlight with this scene? This would be a good opportunity to show how the characters relate, if the Dad can keep his temper when the rebellious teenage son screws around on the firing line, etc.

EDIT: A couple more questions:

What time period is the story set in? The views of firearms and safety rules prevalent today are different from those in years past. We have much more emphasis on things like always wearing hearing and eye protection than they had years ago.
2013.

Where is the story set? In the U.S.? What part of the country? If another country, what are there gun laws and how would the character have access to guns if the laws are strict?
The MC's family is from Surrey, but they're moved to a tiny island under Thailand.

Thanks!

Trebor1415
06-06-2013, 01:20 AM
Lydia,

Ok, that helps. I'm busy at the moment but I'll give a more complete answer tonight or tomorrow.

Can you still explain the father's previous experience with firearms though? How did he learn? Military? Police? Private gun owner? Hunter?

You had said you wanted him to be "profesional" and I can give some tips on how he'd approach it if I know where he starts from.

slhuang
06-06-2013, 02:38 AM
If it's for self-defense purposes, he would also probably be teaching them how to carry and draw from a holster. Drawing and reholstering is actually nontrivial, because of the muzzle safety -- a lot of people cross themselves with their own guns when they're first learning to draw/reholster.

I would expect something like this, with some tweaking:

1 - Gun safety
2 - Loading/clearing (and the vocabulary of the weapon and its ammunition as he's teaching them this)
3 - Stance/aiming -- he would probably work with them bringing the gun up and firing rather than teaching them analytical accuracy
4 - Drawing/reholstering with a cold (empty) weapon until they have it (drawing and clicking the safety off (if a semiauto) in a smooth motion is something most people have to practice)
5 - Drawing and firing, reloading (reloading may or may not have emphasis depending on the danger, which you haven't really specified . . . most RL gun discharges involve very few rounds, but for, say, zombies it would be very important for them to be speedy at reloading)
6 - Moving with the weapon (since it's for tactical/self-defense reasons) -- targeting and firing while moving without endangering their surroundings
7 - Drawing and firing quickly and smoothly and SAFELY while on the move (basically, all of the above combined).

And then cleaning and caring for the weapons afterward.

If I'm forgetting anything I'm sure others will weigh in . . .

Trebor1415
06-06-2013, 02:59 AM
You said they are in a "small island under Thailand". I don't know if you mean under the legal jurisdiction of Thailand or geographically below Thailand.

If it's part of Thailand, legally, here's a link on the guns laws in Thailand. It looks like guns are expensive and require difficult to obtain permits if purchased legally. It also seems there are extra restrictions on non-Thai firearms ownership and it will make a big difference whether they are "resident aliens" (or whatever the correct term is in Thailand) or just non-citizens with no permament legal status.

Note the discussion on page three about non-Thais and firearms ownership.

http://www.thaivisa.com/forum/topic/169637-gun-laws-in-thailand/

Since guns and ammo are expensive and at least somewhat hard to obtain that will effect your overall scenario and specifically how the training would be conducted.

First question: How do they acquire the guns? If they need them on short notice, and the father hadn't previously spent the time and money for the permits, (and waited the required months) than his only choice would be the black market.

A black market gun in that part of the world could be anything from a homemade "zip gun" to more sophisticated home made firearms (copies of existing designs mainly) through old WWII guns, stolen military guns (AK 47, etc) up to modern commercial guns stolen from legal owners including the most up to date things like Glocks, etc. There are also things like homemade submachine guns made with commercial steel or aluminium tubing and parts filed or machined from steel. Some use recycled barrels from other guns (with rifling) and some use simple unrifled barrels made from commercial seamless tubing.

If the black market is the source the father is going to be limited in what he can get and how much ammo. As far as what gun, you could justify any of the examples I mentioned.

As to ammo, if it's black market, he's going to be really limited. Anything from a single loaded magazine or two up to a full box of 20 or 50 cartridges. You could justify a little more, but not that much, and definitely not hundreds of rounds, especially if he had to pull this together on short notice.

cont...

Trebor1415
06-06-2013, 03:33 AM
As to training, so much depends on the father's experience with firearms. Seriously, knowing that would help.

If he's lived in the UK all his life he'd most likely have very limited experience with firearms unless he was an armed police officer (pretty uncommon) or had been in the military.

He also may have been a hunter (shotguns mostly) or been in a shooting club with what few types of firearms are still allowed. (Some rifles and black powder handguns, if I understand correctly).

What I'm saying is the average adult in the UK just doesn't have that much opportunity to learn about firearms in a practical way unless they are in the military or spend time in another country like the U.S. Even if he did visit the U.S. and did some shooting there, that wouldn't make him an expert and especially an expert at instructing others.

I'm going to quote Slhuang here to give my take on some of the things he says.


If it's for self-defense purposes, he would also probably be teaching them how to carry and draw from a holster. Drawing and reholstering is actually nontrivial, because of the muzzle safety -- a lot of people cross themselves with their own guns when they're first learning to draw/reholster.

I agree that drawing from a holster is something that should be taught and learned. But, what experience would he actually have to learn the RIGHT way to draw from a holster so he can teach it to his kids? If he hasn't actually trained in how to do it formally, it's probably something he wouldn't even think about teaching them as he wouldn't realize the importance.




1 - Gun safety

This he could get from a book, the web, or whatever previous experience he has. He would must likely stress things like "Don't point that gun at anyone you don't want to shoot," and "Keep your finger off the trigger so you don't shoot yourself by accident."

If he had more formalized safety training, like military or police, then he'd model his lessons on their rules. Again, let me know.



2 - Loading/clearing (and the vocabulary of the weapon and its ammunition as he's teaching them this)

At the very least he'd go over the basics of loading the cartridges (ammo) into the magazine, how to load the magazine into the firearm, and how to work the action (rack the slide) on an auto-pistol to get it ready to fire. If the weapon has a manual safety (some don't, like Glocks) then he'd show them were it was and how to operate it.

"Ok, now that you racked the slide the gun is loaded and ready to fire. It's dangerous like that, so move the safety this way to put it on "safe." When you want to shoot push it the other way and pull the trigger."

Operating a revolver is even easier. "Push the cylinder release here forward and pop the cylinder to the side with your other hand. Here, now load the bullets (cartridges, but many people call them "bullets") into the chambers like this. Ok, now close the cylinder. There's no safety, so it's ready to fire. Just pull the trigger. (BANG! Etc) "Ok, now to reload push that cylinder release again and open the cylinder. Now point the muzzle at the sky and hit that ejector rod, this one here, yeah, push it down with your finger hard and that will eject the empties."
3 - Stance/aiming -- he would probably work with them bringing the gun up and firing rather than teaching them analytical accuracy



4 - Drawing/reholstering with a cold (empty) weapon until they have it (drawing and clicking the safety off (if a semiauto) in a smooth motion is something most people have to practice)

Again, unless he is a firearms instructor or an experienced handgun shooter, he's not going to consider the importance of teaching this or even have the skills to do it. He very likely may have them practice with an unloaded pistol, but if he's untrained he'd work on "getting it out of the holster quickly" more than anything.



5 - Drawing and firing, reloading (reloading may or may not have emphasis depending on the danger, which you haven't really specified . . . most RL gun discharges involve very few rounds, but for, say, zombies it would be very important for them to be speedy at reloading)



At a minimum he'd show them how to unload and reload the gun, assuming they have more than one magazine of ammo.



6 - Moving with the weapon (since it's for tactical/self-defense reasons) -- targeting and firing while moving without endangering their surroundings
7 - Drawing and firing quickly and smoothly and SAFELY while on the move (basically, all of the above combined).



This is ideal, and if he has the skills himself, and the time to spend, he would want to cover it. But, if he doesn't have the background, he wouldn't know how to do it.


And then cleaning and caring for the weapons afterward.

Not important in the scenario you described. This isn't NRA Basic Pistol. This is "Let me show you how to use this in case we're attacked tonight."


If I'm forgetting anything I'm sure others will weigh in . . .

That was quite thorough. The thing is, if he's not a pro with firearms, or very experience, he may not have the skills to teach all that. There's also the fact that time is limited.

I think it might go something more like this:

"Ok, I got a couple of guns from some people I know. Let me show you how this works."

"This is a Glock pistol. Push this button here, behind the trigger guard to release the magazine. There, now pull it out, catch it, don't drop it! Ok, the mags out, but it might still be loaded if there's one (a live round) in the chamber. Pull back on the slide like this" (works the slide). There, you see how that cartridge flew out? It was loaded. Now pull back again and hold it open and look at the chamber. Ok, it's empty.

Keep holding it open. See that little lever, there, under the slide? Push that up while you hold the slide back. That's the slide release. With it pushed up like that it will hold the slide open. See? Ok, no push it down (SNAP!). See how the slide went forward? That's how you can load it."

Ok, take the magazine and shove it in the bottom there. All the way up the mag well, hard. Now pull back on the slide and let go (SNAP!) Ok, that loaded a round in the chamber so it's ready to fire. Now, remove the mag again, yeah that button, and pull the slide back. Check the chamber. It's unloaded again."

When you shoot hold it like this, in two hands if you can, and look through this rear sight here. Line up the top of the notch in the rear sight with the top of the front sight. That's called sight alignment. Once you have the sights lined up put 'em where you want the bullet to go. Look, aim at the clock. See the front sight through the rear sight? Ok, that's your sight picture.

Now pull the trigger, gently, gently. (click). Ok, that would have fired if it was loaded. Try not to move the gun off target as you pull the trigger. Let's do it again."

You get the idea... Much less formal than a NRA class and focusing on just the basics of how to get the gun to work step by step.

Lidiya
06-06-2013, 11:49 AM
As to training, so much depends on the father's experience with firearms. Seriously, knowing that would help.

If he's lived in the UK all his life he'd most likely have very limited experience with firearms unless he was an armed police officer (pretty uncommon) or had been in the military.

He also may have been a hunter (shotguns mostly) or been in a shooting club with what few types of firearms are still allowed. (Some rifles and black powder handguns, if I understand correctly).

What I'm saying is the average adult in the UK just doesn't have that much opportunity to learn about firearms in a practical way unless they are in the military or spend time in another country like the U.S. Even if he did visit the U.S. and did some shooting there, that wouldn't make him an expert and especially an expert at instructing others.

I'm going to quote Slhuang here to give my take on some of the things he says.

I agree that drawing from a holster is something that should be taught and learned. But, what experience would he actually have to learn the RIGHT way to draw from a holster so he can teach it to his kids? If he hasn't actually trained in how to do it formally, it's probably something he wouldn't even think about teaching them as he wouldn't realize the importance.



This he could get from a book, the web, or whatever previous experience he has. He would must likely stress things like "Don't point that gun at anyone you don't want to shoot," and "Keep your finger off the trigger so you don't shoot yourself by accident."

If he had more formalized safety training, like military or police, then he'd model his lessons on their rules. Again, let me know.



At the very least he'd go over the basics of loading the cartridges (ammo) into the magazine, how to load the magazine into the firearm, and how to work the action (rack the slide) on an auto-pistol to get it ready to fire. If the weapon has a manual safety (some don't, like Glocks) then he'd show them were it was and how to operate it.

"Ok, now that you racked the slide the gun is loaded and ready to fire. It's dangerous like that, so move the safety this way to put it on "safe." When you want to shoot push it the other way and pull the trigger."

Operating a revolver is even easier. "Push the cylinder release here forward and pop the cylinder to the side with your other hand. Here, now load the bullets (cartridges, but many people call them "bullets") into the chambers like this. Ok, now close the cylinder. There's no safety, so it's ready to fire. Just pull the trigger. (BANG! Etc) "Ok, now to reload push that cylinder release again and open the cylinder. Now point the muzzle at the sky and hit that ejector rod, this one here, yeah, push it down with your finger hard and that will eject the empties."
3 - Stance/aiming -- he would probably work with them bringing the gun up and firing rather than teaching them analytical accuracy

Again, unless he is a firearms instructor or an experienced handgun shooter, he's not going to consider the importance of teaching this or even have the skills to do it. He very likely may have them practice with an unloaded pistol, but if he's untrained he'd work on "getting it out of the holster quickly" more than anything.



At a minimum he'd show them how to unload and reload the gun, assuming they have more than one magazine of ammo.



This is ideal, and if he has the skills himself, and the time to spend, he would want to cover it. But, if he doesn't have the background, he wouldn't know how to do it.



Not important in the scenario you described. This isn't NRA Basic Pistol. This is "Let me show you how to use this in case we're attacked tonight."



That was quite thorough. The thing is, if he's not a pro with firearms, or very experience, he may not have the skills to teach all that. There's also the fact that time is limited.

I think it might go something more like this:

"Ok, I got a couple of guns from some people I know. Let me show you how this works."

"This is a Glock pistol. Push this button here, behind the trigger guard to release the magazine. There, now pull it out, catch it, don't drop it! Ok, the mags out, but it might still be loaded if there's one (a live round) in the chamber. Pull back on the slide like this" (works the slide). There, you see how that cartridge flew out? It was loaded. Now pull back again and hold it open and look at the chamber. Ok, it's empty.

Keep holding it open. See that little lever, there, under the slide? Push that up while you hold the slide back. That's the slide release. With it pushed up like that it will hold the slide open. See? Ok, no push it down (SNAP!). See how the slide went forward? That's how you can load it."

Ok, take the magazine and shove it in the bottom there. All the way up the mag well, hard. Now pull back on the slide and let go (SNAP!) Ok, that loaded a round in the chamber so it's ready to fire. Now, remove the mag again, yeah that button, and pull the slide back. Check the chamber. It's unloaded again."

When you shoot hold it like this, in two hands if you can, and look through this rear sight here. Line up the top of the notch in the rear sight with the top of the front sight. That's called sight alignment. Once you have the sights lined up put 'em where you want the bullet to go. Look, aim at the clock. See the front sight through the rear sight? Ok, that's your sight picture.

Now pull the trigger, gently, gently. (click). Ok, that would have fired if it was loaded. Try not to move the gun off target as you pull the trigger. Let's do it again."

You get the idea... Much less formal than a NRA class and focusing on just the basics of how to get the gun to work step by step.

Thank you :)
And their father used to be in the army before the kids were born.

Lidiya
06-06-2013, 11:53 AM
You said they are in a "small island under Thailand". I don't know if you mean under the legal jurisdiction of Thailand or geographically below Thailand.

If it's part of Thailand, legally, here's a link on the guns laws in Thailand. It looks like guns are expensive and require difficult to obtain permits if purchased legally. It also seems there are extra restrictions on non-Thai firearms ownership and it will make a big difference whether they are "resident aliens" (or whatever the correct term is in Thailand) or just non-citizens with no permament legal status.

Note the discussion on page three about non-Thais and firearms ownership.

http://www.thaivisa.com/forum/topic/169637-gun-laws-in-thailand/

Since guns and ammo are expensive and at least somewhat hard to obtain that will effect your overall scenario and specifically how the training would be conducted.

First question: How do they acquire the guns? If they need them on short notice, and the father hadn't previously spent the time and money for the permits, (and waited the required months) than his only choice would be the black market.

A black market gun in that part of the world could be anything from a homemade "zip gun" to more sophisticated home made firearms (copies of existing designs mainly) through old WWII guns, stolen military guns (AK 47, etc) up to modern commercial guns stolen from legal owners including the most up to date things like Glocks, etc. There are also things like homemade submachine guns made with commercial steel or aluminium tubing and parts filed or machined from steel. Some use recycled barrels from other guns (with rifling) and some use simple unrifled barrels made from commercial seamless tubing.

If the black market is the source the father is going to be limited in what he can get and how much ammo. As far as what gun, you could justify any of the examples I mentioned.

As to ammo, if it's black market, he's going to be really limited. Anything from a single loaded magazine or two up to a full box of 20 or 50 cartridges. You could justify a little more, but not that much, and definitely not hundreds of rounds, especially if he had to pull this together on short notice.

cont...

They're geographically on an island under Thailand (which most definitely doesn't exist in real life) that only the government knows about -- that's why they moved them there, so they could do social experiments on them. Due to this, there aren't really any laws, but they'll obviously be punished if caught using guns or anything like that.

The father managed to sneak in a gun. They were taken to the island by helicopter, and since their house was burnt down everyone assumed they had nothing left, so the checks weren't very thorough.

Muppster
06-06-2013, 08:08 PM
People seem to have covered everything... ;)

Have you considered going to a gun range for research purposes? YouTube etc is great for the technical details, but nothing beats doing it for the first time to understand what your character is feeling. Firing a real gun with live ammo felt v different to messing with airsoft/paintball (kind of like the first time you drive a car on a public road and there's that "omgs I could kill people!" vibe)

Trebor1415
06-06-2013, 08:31 PM
If he's ex military he'd be familiar with firearms, know how to shoot, know gun safety, etc.

Just be aware most "regular" soldiers (non special units) get very little or no handgun training. The standard weapon is a rifle so that's what everyone is trained with. Pistols are only generally issues to officers, some specialist troops, and sometimes to Machine Gunners or mortar crew or people who can't carry a rifle and their primary weapon.

Even then, military handgun training is very basic. Don't expect him to have really been trained in how to draw from a holster or how to clear a house with a handgun. That stuff just isn't taught to most troops. At most, the average soldier, even officers, just gets basic training on how the handgun works, how to load it, unload it, and the basics of shooting.

Just letting you know to get more of a feel for how he'd approach training his kids, what he'd draw on from his background, etc.

Now, if he's ex special forces, SAS or whatever, all bets are off. They get extensive handgun training as part of their training.

Tazlima
07-14-2013, 02:55 AM
Your characters might be a bit too old for this, but my father taught me to shoot when I was six. As many other people have mentioned, there was a good bit of safety training before I was allowed to do anything else. The part I remember most though, were the empty soda cans he brought along.

He lined them up and we shot them full of holes. Once they were thoroughly mangled, we went over and looked at the damage we had done. He told me, "You see this? This is why you never point a gun at a person."

Let me tell you, I never forgot that lesson.

I have a friend with a similar story, only her father demonstrated not with aluminum cans, but gallon milk jugs filled with cherry jello. She too carries a very vivid memory of her first shooting lesson.

kuwisdelu
07-14-2013, 03:17 AM
I made sure my daughter pointed the rifle in the right direction.

That was about the extent of what my brother told me (who's old enough to be my father).

We're Injuns though...

Docaggie
07-14-2013, 06:39 AM
It'd really depend on the age of the kids.
The younger they are, the more likely they'd be teaching safety and basics of how to operate it. Older kids, we're talking better instruction on how to aim and fire.