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Old August 10, 2005, 10:08 PM   #1
Redworm
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where can I learn?

I'm completely new to rifles and guns in general. I've never fired a gun in my life and I'm just now starting to research ballistics, which I find to be a fascinating subject. The bottom line is that I want to learn how to shoot. For the record, I'm 22 and I live in northeast Illinois just shy of the Wisconsin border.

I'm taking the steps necessary to get a FOID card but once I do I have no idea what the next step is. I can't simply go out and buy a gun because I don't even know what to look for nor what would suit me best. Unfortunately I've found that shooting ranges in my area are few and far between; what are the chances that I'll be able to find one that rents them out? A key point is that I'd not only like to learn the basics of shooting but also try out a variety of guns to find which feels best. I've heard of the guns popularized by Hollywood - Beretta 9FS, Colt M1911, GLOCK 17, etc - but I've no idea where I can do to try all of them out. Any ideas?

Also I'd like to learn to shoot long range rifles. That may (or may not) sound strange, but there's a reason for it. I'm strongly considering joining the Marine Corps within the next year or two and one of the options I've considered is applying to be a sniper. Why? My dad was a sniper for the Army; he died when I was young otherwise I'd be asking him all this but I'd like to take a crack at what he did for a living to see if I feel as natural behind a scope as he did. Do shooting ranges ever have rifles like that available? Is there any place I could experience long range shooting?

One more question; what are your recommendations for someone like me in terms of a good starter gun, additional equipment, books I should read, magazines I should peruse, people I should talk to, types of shops I should look for and/or avoid, and any other general information one might have?

Before I do any of this I'll continue to research how guns work, the physics behind them, my state laws, and whatever other information I can absorb over time. I'll be calling the few ranges in my area over the next few days but I figured a forum full of gun owners would be a great place to get some insight on the subject.

Thanks in advance.
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Old August 10, 2005, 10:37 PM   #2
HighValleyRanch
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Find a shooting club near where you live. Search the internet or gun sites to find a respectable one. Not just a rental range, but a club where shooters hang out and do some serious shooting. If you join, there always will be some shooters willing to take you under their wing and give you some training, as long as you are sincere in learning.
Not some rambo want to be.
Police activities leagues, NRA clubs just to name a couple of organizations.

that way you will taught the right basics, and be able to know what you are doing before going out and making the wrong purchase or learn the wrong methods. Target shooters are always willing to help beginners.
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Old August 10, 2005, 10:53 PM   #3
Bob F.
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Move to America................
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Old August 10, 2005, 10:58 PM   #4
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Quote:
I live in northeast Illinois just shy of the Wisconsin border
Now, while I dont actually have my atlas handy, Im pretty sure that is within the confines of America.



I agree with finding a good range. Sometimes even better is to find a friend to get involved in shooting sports too. Bounce knowledge back betweent he two of you.

Get aquainted with as many gun peple as you can. Ask questions. And stick around here. Although there are a bunch of BS waste-of-bandwidth arguments over silly things like 45 vs 9mm, there is also a bunch of good info.


Also, look in the firing line library.
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Old August 11, 2005, 02:43 AM   #5
LAK
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The first is easy. Best starter book - bar none IMO - for the rifle is; "The Art of the Rifle" by Col. Cooper. It is widely available on the web if you can not find it locally. I would recommend you read it, study and practice the contents.

I have a more difficult time suggesting a good handgun starter, as there have been an enormous number of works written about them. I will mention that Col. Cooper authored two other excellent works; "The Principles of Personal Defense" and "To Ride, Shoot Straight, and Speak the Truth" which have important handgun related material.

As for starter guns I would buy a quality .22 rimfire bolt-action rifle. Were I shopping for an accurate bolt-action .22, based on it's current record, I would track down a CZ 452. You can buy cheaper, and there have been so many .22 rimfire rifles made in the last century that there are a great number of different used models lying around. But that would be my choice.

Whatever rifle you choose, make sure it has "open" or "Iron sights". Telescopic sights are very good and useful for many things. But you do not want to learn to shoot with them until you have mastered the "irons".

Handguns are a different story. You may want to start with a revolver. Or you might want to go with a semi-automatic pistol. In the former class I would recommend any steel or stainless Smith & Wesson .22 rimfire with a 4" barrel. And you might find a nice one on the used market.

Pistols are another matter, at least for me. I am not that impressed with many of the new ones and instead prefer the older ones from Colt, Ruger, Browning etc. Like .22 rifles, there are a great number of both revolvers and pistols that have been made, so there are a great number of possibilities for a used .22 handgun.
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Old August 11, 2005, 02:45 PM   #6
Redworm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighValleyRanch
Find a shooting club near where you live. Search the internet or gun sites to find a respectable one. Not just a rental range, but a club where shooters hang out and do some serious shooting. If you join, there always will be some shooters willing to take you under their wing and give you some training, as long as you are sincere in learning.
Not some rambo want to be.
Police activities leagues, NRA clubs just to name a couple of organizations.

that way you will taught the right basics, and be able to know what you are doing before going out and making the wrong purchase or learn the wrong methods. Target shooters are always willing to help beginners.
I'll start looking for some. Are there any obvious signs as to which may be respectable clubs and which may not be? I'm very sincere about learning, primarily because of my thoughts of joining the Marine Corps. I need to be sure I'm comfortable shooting a gun before I make this commitment, especially when it comes to rifles. My desired MOS is going to be a sniper for a Force Recon unit but I don't want to later find out that I'm just not cut out for it.

I'll check out the NRA's website for information; for some odd reason that never occured to me and it seems to be the most obvious place for me to go first.



On another note, while Avizpls is correct I think I'll still take Bob F's advice into consideration...
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Old August 11, 2005, 02:55 PM   #7
Bosshoff
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What town are you in? I am from the area, and I am sure I can point you to a few places. concerning the "move to the USA crack", funny funny We're trying here! It's just a hard mentality to break. The Daley clan has been feeding this state crap for four decades!

Last edited by Bosshoff; August 11, 2005 at 10:41 PM.
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Old August 11, 2005, 03:11 PM   #8
Redworm
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I live in Gurnee, about five minutes from Great America. There's a shooting range in the Bass Pro Shop at Gurnee Mills; spoke with the rangemaster today and he said that they don't do any kind of training or rentals but he gave me the number for an instructor in the area.

Any advice you have to offer would be greatly appreciated.
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Old August 11, 2005, 03:16 PM   #9
stephen426
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I hope I don't sound like a wuss or unpatriotic by making this post, but do a little soul searching before joining the marines as a sniper. Just because your father did it, are you comfortable with taking another human being's life outside of a self defense situation? Would you kill for your country even if you might not believe in or even know what the true cause is.

(Many question why we are putting our men and women in harm's way for Iraq?) Bush's claim was to eliminate weapons of mass destruction and spread democracy. Those are good causes if they are true but there are those who say it is to expand our sphere's of influence and for oil. Although I would gladly take up arms to defend my country, Vietnam, Somalia, and Iraq are highly questionable as defending our country. I believe in helping where there is suffering but not unilaterally. Meanwhile, al Quaeda still thumbs their noses at us and are still killing our troops. I hope Bush finishes what he started in Afganistan and Iraq.

Anyways, I am going off on a tangent here. It is a noble cause to defend your country but just remember that you BELONG to the military when you enlist. You do not make decisions, moral or otherwise. You just follow orders. Just because your father was a sniper does not mean that you have to. Talk to you family about it first. They have already had to deal with the loss of your father. Do not bring additional grief to your family.

You can be a sniper in the police if you really want to. It is much safer since there are rarely counter snipers. You will also be on home turf rather than enemy territory. Just make sure you check with your conscience as to whether you are ready to take another person's life.
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Old August 11, 2005, 04:34 PM   #10
Redworm
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Being a sniper is not my reason for wanting to join the Marines. In fact, only recently did I consider this as a career path; until now I'd looked at air traffic control as a possible MOS during my enlistment. Regardless, my desire to join comes from my desire to fly. My ultimate goal is to be a Hornet pilot, be it for the Navy or for the Marines. Whatever I do during my enlistment I consider simply additional training and experience.

I've been looking at the military for quite a while now; it's not a decision I make lightly. I do believe that defense of others is as important as my own defense and unless asked to take out civilians and children, I see little difference between putting a bullet in someone's head 1000 yards away and knocking an Iraqi MiG out of the sky with a Sidewinder.

For the record, my views on the current war are similar to yours. But in my mind it doesn't change the fact that there are still people over there fighting because they've been ordered to and if helping them out for a while, be in behind a rifle or a radar screen, gets me a chance to live my dream then I believe it's worth it. Granted, if we were randomly invading some country for ****s & giggles I'd have much stronger reservations. Despite the controversy around the war I still believe much of what's being done can be justified. Believe me, I've thought about this a lot and weighed all the factors. The fact that I haven't actually completed all the paperwork and signed my name on the recruiting papers is testament to my indecision in the matter.


Anyways....

I do appreciate you bringing this up, though. It's always good to have a reminder once in a while. As far as being a sniper for the police...my dad died in the line of duty, not in combat. While primarily a sniper, he did other duties on occassion and it was during those times that it happened.

Taking another person's life is certainly an issue that I'll have to face if I make this decision, but I honestly do believe that I would be as comfortable killing for my country and the soldiers/airmen/sailors/marines I'm working with as I would in my own defense or in the defense of an innocent civilian. As I said, it may be quite some time before I've made a final decision, but at the very least I want to experience what it's like to shoot a long range rifle before I give it much more thought.

For all I know I'll be horrible at it and the decision will be made for me. :P
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Old August 11, 2005, 06:27 PM   #11
claude783
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Alright, I could suggest different firearms, etc. However, what I suggest is that you watch the paper. When the next GUNSHOW comes to your area I would suggest you attend!

You might be surprised to find a neighbor, friend, or someone you went to school with going to the show...if not, you will be able to talk to diffent people at the booths and see a varity of firearms, perhaps find a NRA instructor at the show...
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Old August 11, 2005, 07:56 PM   #12
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As far as learning about firearms themselves (what you like, what's good and what's not, etc.) the best way to go is trial and error...when you get burned you'll learn not to go with that particular whatever again. It takes time, but you have to pay some kind of dues.

I used to think (among other wrong ideas) that if the barrel wasn't bent and it had adjustable sights how could you go wrong...

I used to think that if the military issued it it had to be good...

I am slowly figuring things out as I go.
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Old August 11, 2005, 07:57 PM   #13
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A sniper or a hornet pilot. Hehe you choice two of the hardest positions to get into. Most the Hornets are grounded since they have a habit of cutting the brake wire and causing the brakes to cut out. A pilot nearly died the other day from it. Generally requires a degree to get into training and a lot of luck. It takes a number of years active service before you can qualify to even test out for the sniper school, and the chance of passing it is very hard with a 50% failure rate. You probrobly be sent to do a few tours of duty in Iraq first in the infantry. Thats the way things usually go right now.

As for a rifle .22LR rifles are the way to go for learning to shoot. You won't get a bad flinch and you can learn the basics. Later on you could even get an AR and get some practice with what you are going to be shooting most likely. I generally would start off with a bolt action to kill the spray and pray mentality and learn accuracy.

Do a search on the net for gunranges and you should find quite a few around. Luckly you are not in this monsterous part of North Carolina were every gunrange thats decent seems to be 2 hours drive away.
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Old August 11, 2005, 08:07 PM   #14
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A good cheap gun is either as NEW ENGLAND FIREARMS or H&R single shot rifle. Good practice with the emphasis on one round placement, most are already drilled & tapped for scope base, and they come in nearly every caliber under the sun.

If you want to know what caliber you should start off with, I suggest picking up a reloading manual and read the history and comments for each caliber. My personal preference leans toward the Hornady Manuals. You can spend weeks on end reading them.

Good luck

Semper Fi
(or Go Navy)
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Old August 11, 2005, 08:43 PM   #15
us.armysniper
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RedWorm,
it sounds like you are very ambitious and that is very good. But I want to square you away on the facts of being a sniper in the usmc or the army. you do have an advatage over most people that have been shooting all there lives. they are pretty set in there ways and they have sometimes developed very bad habbitts that are hard to break. so there you are ahead.
First and foremost a sniper is not an mos that you can just enlist for in the army. or the usmc for that matter. you must first go to basic or boot then your ait and once you get to your unit, then once you get the proper rank you can try to get your squad leader and platoon sgt to get you a school slot!
If i were you i would do what I did, go infantry for a while then take as many schools as possible airborn sniper school etc. and if the regular infantry isn't a big enough challenge there is always ranger bats or sf. And i can tell you from experience that it doesn't get more high speed than sf!
Plus when you advance to sf or ranger bats the sniper training gets better and longer ranges and more intense!
I have the tm here somewhere that i first studied to get me ready and if i find it i will give you the number so you can pick one up.
And last and most important, the job isn't as great as the media and movies make it out to be. I just got back fom a year tour and the majority of the time is setting and waiting, very rarly are you ever imploed like we should be. Good luck!
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Old August 11, 2005, 11:01 PM   #16
Bosshoff
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Claude, we don't get gunshows in our neck of the woods. Redworm will have to travel to Kane County Fairgrounds near St. Charles, and thats only about four times a year. I only go if I'm low on beef jerky. Redworm, how old are you, and do you have a car? If the answer is over 18, and yes I have a car,then great. First thing first, go to the Gurnee Police station, and pick up an application for a F.O.I.D. card. (Firearms Owners Identification Card.) yeah I know it sucks, but WE have to deal with it. Go to Walgreens, get two passport photos taken, get it notorized, signed by a parent if underage? Then send it in. No one in the state is going to show you anything in a store without this FOID card. The stores just get hassled too much to do this. A huge store which always has a great selection is in Dundee called G.A.T. Guns. It stands for Guns, Archery, and Tackle. The help can be hit or miss. Try to get an older guy help you at the rifle counter, and avoid the cop wannabees. I would seriously consider a high quality bolt action 22LR. If you buy a NICE rifle like a Remington, Browning, CZ, etc. you will NEVER regret the purchase. If you buy a crap rifle, you will kick yourself down the road. Get some lessons at G.A.T. See if they will throw them in with the purchase of the rifle. Buy some ammo from them,and a pair of Peltor brand earmuffs as well. These may be overkill for rimfire use, but again getting good equipment first saves $$ in the end. I would start out with open or Iron blade type sights. Once you get good with the rifle, you can put a scope on it. Again, don't go too cheap on the scope. Buy the best optics you can afford. Obviously within reason I would look for a 4X or four power fixed model. Spend more than $50, but less than or near to $100 if possible. This does not include the base or rings. I have a bolt action CZ 452 "American" model. It does not have iron sights, so I will not recomend it to you, but I think they make a "LUX" model which has sights, and may even come with scope rings? You cannot go wrong with a CZ rifle. I think they are a great value. PM me anytime if you want to ask me a question. There is a ton of honor in joining the Marines, Good luck.
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Old August 12, 2005, 11:01 AM   #17
Redworm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by us.armysniper
RedWorm,
it sounds like you are very ambitious and that is very good. But I want to square you away on the facts of being a sniper in the usmc or the army. you do have an advatage over most people that have been shooting all there lives. they are pretty set in there ways and they have sometimes developed very bad habbitts that are hard to break. so there you are ahead.
First and foremost a sniper is not an mos that you can just enlist for in the army. or the usmc for that matter. you must first go to basic or boot then your ait and once you get to your unit, then once you get the proper rank you can try to get your squad leader and platoon sgt to get you a school slot!
If i were you i would do what I did, go infantry for a while then take as many schools as possible airborn sniper school etc. and if the regular infantry isn't a big enough challenge there is always ranger bats or sf. And i can tell you from experience that it doesn't get more high speed than sf!
Plus when you advance to sf or ranger bats the sniper training gets better and longer ranges and more intense!
I have the tm here somewhere that i first studied to get me ready and if i find it i will give you the number so you can pick one up.
And last and most important, the job isn't as great as the media and movies make it out to be. I just got back fom a year tour and the majority of the time is setting and waiting, very rarly are you ever imploed like we should be. Good luck!
Perhaps I misunderstood the information I've been reading. According to http://www.snipersparadise.com/USMC_prereq.htm:

Quote:
Two of the better ways of becoming a Scout/Sniper are through a Recon unit or an Infantry Battalion. First join the Marine Corps with an Infantry MOS. While in Boot Camp you will need to shoot Expert on the rifle range, become at least a second class swimmer and score a high first class PFT. Upon completion of Infantry training you will be given the opportunity to volunteer for Recon or Force Recon. If you successfully complete their indoc you will be sent to a Recon unit where you will first qualify as a Recon Marine then given the opportunity to volunteer for Scout/Sniper School. BN Recon and Force Recon have school seats assigned to them for every S/S School.
I figured that it wouldn't be something I could simply sign up for during the enlistment procedure, but I thought the option would be available to me immediately after basic training (assuming I qualified and was accepted into a Force Recon unit). While I mean no disrespect to any infantryman in any branch, I wouldn't be thrilled with being in an infantry unit throughout my enlistment; I'm not looking for glamour and glory or anything but if I'm going to do this I'd like to do something that really interests me (hence my 'fall back' choice being air traffic control).

And also, I do realize that the needs of the military will certainly outweigh my own desires and goals. This is another reason I'm trying to get as much information as possible regarding the issue before I even fill out the paperwork. Believe me, long before I sign up I'll be doing what I can to talk to guys like you that can give me first hand information on what it takes to become a sniper. But, as I mentioned before, one of my first goals is to see if I'm even comfortable shooting a rifle in the first place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Limeyfellow
A sniper or a hornet pilot. Hehe you choice two of the hardest positions to get into. Most the Hornets are grounded since they have a habit of cutting the brake wire and causing the brakes to cut out. A pilot nearly died the other day from it. Generally requires a degree to get into training and a lot of luck. It takes a number of years active service before you can qualify to even test out for the sniper school, and the chance of passing it is very hard with a 50% failure rate. You probrobly be sent to do a few tours of duty in Iraq first in the infantry. Thats the way things usually go right now.
No doubt. The fact that they're some of the most difficult positions to get into are part of the reason they interest me so much. My ultimate goal is to be a Hornet pilot; anything beyond that I see as additional experience and I'm willing to take whatever routes necessary to achieve that goal. Again, I'm not dead set on becoming a sniper and it's not my only reason for wanting to learn how to shoot. I just figured I'd point it out to you guys and I'm very glad I did because I'm learning a lot and having some misconceptions cleared up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bosshoff
Claude, we don't get gunshows in our neck of the woods. Redworm will have to travel to Kane County Fairgrounds near St. Charles, and thats only about four times a year. I only go if I'm low on beef jerky. Redworm, how old are you, and do you have a car? If the answer is over 18, and yes I have a car,then great. First thing first, go to the Gurnee Police station, and pick up an application for a F.O.I.D. card. (Firearms Owners Identification Card.) yeah I know it sucks, but WE have to deal with it. Go to Walgreens, get two passport photos taken, get it notorized, signed by a parent if underage? Then send it in. No one in the state is going to show you anything in a store without this FOID card. The stores just get hassled too much to do this. A huge store which always has a great selection is in Dundee called G.A.T. Guns. It stands for Guns, Archery, and Tackle. The help can be hit or miss. Try to get an older guy help you at the rifle counter, and avoid the cop wannabees. I would seriously consider a high quality bolt action 22LR. If you buy a NICE rifle like a Remington, Browning, CZ, etc. you will NEVER regret the purchase. If you buy a crap rifle, you will kick yourself down the road. Get some lessons at G.A.T. See if they will throw them in with the purchase of the rifle. Buy some ammo from them,and a pair of Peltor brand earmuffs as well. These may be overkill for rimfire use, but again getting good equipment first saves $$ in the end. I would start out with open or Iron blade type sights. Once you get good with the rifle, you can put a scope on it. Again, don't go too cheap on the scope. Buy the best optics you can afford. Obviously within reason I would look for a 4X or four power fixed model. Spend more than $50, but less than or near to $100 if possible. This does not include the base or rings. I have a bolt action CZ 452 "American" model. It does not have iron sights, so I will not recomend it to you, but I think they make a "LUX" model which has sights, and may even come with scope rings? You cannot go wrong with a CZ rifle. I think they are a great value. PM me anytime if you want to ask me a question. There is a ton of honor in joining the Marines, Good luck.
I'm 22 and I do have a car. I printed out the FOID application from the state's website and filled it out. I'm trying to find time to get to the DMV and get an Illinois license (I've been living here for nearly two years now and due to issues with getting my birth certificate from Florida I've still got an out of state license) before I send that in. I'll check out that place in Dundee when I get a chance, thanks for the tips.
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Old August 12, 2005, 08:08 PM   #18
Dust_Devil
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Redworm...first welcome to the world of guns and shooting.

You couldn't be in one of the worst states to be interested in firearms. I'm formerly from Illinois. Illinos state gun laws are some of the worst as you may or may not know.
Pardon me if I make it sound like you don't know the laws, but you did mention that you never shot a gun before and I am just assuming maybe you need to know more about the laws there.
If you live in Chicago, Willmete, Evanston and a number of other towns, you can just forget about owning a gun as city ordinances don't allow it.
Other counties may not allow semi-automatic rifles to be owned or used at any ranges.
Forget about ever carrying a gun for personal protection in Illinois. Only the police and gangbangers can carry. Law-abiding citizens need not apply.

The rest of Illinois outside the Chicago area is fine as far as ownership goes as long as you have a FOID card. You will find that you can own any non-full-automatic firearm.....for now. Politicians in IL are always trying to ban guns.
The bad thing about being a shooter in Illinois is the small number of actual outdoor shooting ranges in the northern parts.
There are a few 25 yard indoor handgun ranges and a couple that allow rifles, but if you are a serious shooter and want to shoot outdoors at longer ranges, you will either have to join an expensive sportsman's club which mainly are just clay/skeet shooting or drive up in Wisconsin and go to a range called Bristol where they have some strict rules, but it is a 200 yard range and good for long range practice. You may want to do a search for other ranges in WI.
I don't know how far north you live in IL, but the closest outdoor ranges in IL state itself to you would be Sycamore Sportsmans Club in Sycamore, Aurora Sportsmans Club(expensive) or way further south at Buffalo Range in Ottawa which is a very cool public range with a 100 yard range and a shooting pit where you can rapid fire.
Then you have many more ranges in southern Illinois including the Illinois State Rifle Association Range in Kankakee.
Before you really get serious in buying anything, go to some of shooting ranges. See if the ones that are near you will suit your needs as far as what types of firearms you want to learn to shoot with and if the ones that you do like are a long distance away, are you willing to drive that far just to go shooting.

Go find a shooting instructor. Many gun shops will have some guy there who is an experienced NRA instructor. They may charge something like $50-$100 for a lesson. They will teach you the basics of shooting, marksmanship and safety. Some gun shops have handgun class competitions and you could look into that once you get more exerienced.

Now as far as what guns you should get and what caliber. If you were a youngster, most would say start of with a .22 cal pistol or rifle because it's very light in recoil, etc. But you are 22 yrs old now and an adult and I think you can handle something with some power. You could go with something bigger and not have to buy a .22 and a couple months later have to buy another gun which is more powerful and suited for your level of experience.
For a handgun, if you want a revolver, I would say something like a S&W .38 cal. If you want a semi-auto look for a 9mm. These will produce power, but very low recoil and easy to handle for a new shooter.
For a rifle, whether it is a bolt-action or semi-auto, a good start is a .223/5.56mm caliber. Then work up to a .308 where you can then get into more long range shooting. Some shooting ranges don't like semi-autos such as AR15s and the shooters there are very snobbish to the "tactical" type of shooters. You will not believe how many anti-gun gun shops and ranges there are. You may come by some older, hunter types that will look at you like you are some weirdo or something because you have a semi-auto AR15 or AK47 and can't figure why you need that type of gun for.

I hope I didn't frighten you any from the shooting sports with the way things are in Illinois. If you really are interested, it can be done, but depending where you live in the state will determine whether it will be easier for you just to get into some local indoor handgun shooting or outdoor rifle shooting. The world of shooting may not be as fun and as easy in Illinois as in most other states, but if you have your heart into it, you will be okay.
Or just move out of state.

check out the ISP site for more state laws and FOID card info
http://www.isp.state.il.us/foid/firearms.cfm

P.S. I missed your last post where you mentioned you already visited the iSP site and downloaded the FOID form.
I also see you are formerly fom Florida? Wow!!...not a good move if you are interested in shooting. But I understand you may had to move to Illinois for one reason or another with family, job ,etc.
Good luck if you do join the Corps. Sniper schools are very difficult to pass and if you do become a Marine sniper, I'm sure you will spend lots of time outside of Illinois and outside the states even.
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Old August 28, 2005, 05:58 AM   #19
longspurr
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Join Date: November 8, 2002
Location: On the western shore of the lake
Posts: 140
Redworm

I wish you luck on your ideas. I am from the Elgin area and a member of the little known Elgin rifle club. Commercial places like Gander Mountain and GAT sports are good for buying guns but not for training. Training other that the 5 minute safety lecture is done by a separate individual that does paid training and uses GAT / GM as the shooting range resource. That training is mostly firearms familiarization and oriented towards handguns.

The Elgin Rifle Club is a private club that is members only. To be a member you must be sponsored by a member. One of the members works at GAT guns so you can make contact with someone that way or PM me and I will give you names & phone numbers. Doing training at a club range – other clubs were mentioned before -is the right way to get a good start.

To better shoot Rifle - especially long range rifle your best bet is either the Kenosha county conservation club just over the Ill / Wisconsin border or another club that is on 7 mile road north of Racine Wisconsin.

Buying a 22 with peep sights is an excellent idea as learning to shoot it well is good training for hi-power shooting.
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Old September 2, 2005, 09:23 AM   #20
Dust_Devil
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Join Date: August 5, 2005
Location: Arizona
Posts: 235
longspur,

I used to live in Elgin, IL and I must say I always heard of the Elgin Rifle Club but could never find out where it was? I found a number for it listed one time and there was never an answer.
Was it held at a private residence?
What types of rifles do you shoot and where?
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Old November 2, 2005, 08:03 AM   #21
Rimrod
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Join Date: October 19, 2005
Location: Behind enemy lines
Posts: 1,309
You didn't really say what kind of shooting you were interested in. There are so many different forms of shooting that the basics for one may not be the basics for all.

I noticed LAK suggested several books by Jeff Cooper, I bought a book in the 70's by him and found the more experience I gained the more he was off base. And reading various articles of his during the years sort of biased my opinion of him. However, I have also read entire books and found one sentence that changed my perspective which to me made it worthwhile. I will try and read some of his works. Although I will try and borrow them before buying. The best rifle book for beginner or experienced shooter, in my opinion, is the 'U.S.M.C. Sniping' manual. The little red book ISBN 0-87947-420-3.

As for suggesting a firearm, if you've read many threads here you have probably noticed a lot of varying opinions. It is due to personal likes and dis-likes, which you will eventually use to form an opinion of your own. Plus the wepons you should choose will depend also on what type of shooting you want to persue. This I understand will be difficult from your description of the circumstances where you live. It is hard to tell the knowledgable from the know it alls, as I have heard some really stupid things in gun stores, from both sides of the counter. If you are totally unfamilliar with firearms you may want to start with .22s, they allow you to learn the basics of shooting without having to deal with recoil. As for a rifle try a bolt action with a composite stock. Semi-autos are popular but the bolt moving back and forth isn't good for a beginner trying to learn how to shoot. The same for handguns, try a revolver or even single shot first.

As for the best magazines to read... Well I would like to let you know what I really think, but since I don't want to get thrown out of here. Try these if they are still around: OUI, Penthouse, Cherri etc. etc. At least they may teach you some proper breathing techniques.
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