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Old October 27, 2000, 08:18 PM   #1
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What age should you start someone to learn how to shoot?
What gun would you recommend to start a beginner with?
What gun would you recommend for a young person (about 11-13 years old)?
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Old October 27, 2000, 08:40 PM   #2
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coming from someone who has BTDT I bought my son 2 red rider BB guns both of them broke soon after we got them home. I took them back and just let him shoot my benjamin. This all started at age 4. He is now 6 and will be 7 in Nov and has been shooting a .22 for about two years now. I drill gun safety into him all the time.

#1. A gun is always loaded.
#2. Once you pull the trigger you can't bring the bullet back.

Consider the maturatey of the individual. Size and age has something to do with it but maturity has alot to do with it.

A son is the best friend you'll ever have!
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Old October 27, 2000, 10:50 PM   #3
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At 11 I was given a .177 pellet rifle that my parents let me shoot in northern Michigan (My mom actually said, "You'll shoot yer eye out!" way before "Chistmas Story" was at the movies). It was Crossman 760 and I shot it every day until my arm hurt from pumping. I set a soup can over a stick across the Muskegon river and sat on the dock, I'd go through a carton of BBs in just a few days. Every few weeks I'd row out and move the can further away or replace it as it became shot to pieces. I became a very good shot because of that experience. Then my father let me shoot his Ruger Mark? .22 into ice on the water. Without hearing protection, it was more violent than the BB gun and my first thoughts of firing gunpowder for the 1st time was that it was unpleasent. I think that carried with me and I developed respect for guns and learned to treat them different then my toys because of that.
A word of caution: an 11 year old boy, unsupervised is likely to test limits! How far will this shoot? Will it skip on water? What is the destructive power? The world was still new and there were many things to experience in the hundred acre wood. I never shot at a single bird or frog, but cat-tails in northern Michigan still fear me.
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Old October 28, 2000, 12:13 AM   #4
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i will tell you this a 14 year old will push his luck and test his limits.
or at least i will but i do try to do it responsibly.

and no i have no input on what age to start the little brats, oops i mean kids.
i started with a red ryder bb gun when i was 7 amnd then moved to a .22 single shot later that year.

i think it depends on the maturity of the kid.

ok so i had a little input, sue me.
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Old October 28, 2000, 10:21 PM   #5
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LASur5er kind of answered his own question ... 11-13 years old sounds like the best thing. It's not just maturity but bone formation you have to take into account; starting any sport earlier than puberty shapes the child's physical characteristics no end. Think women's gymnastics, though that's an extreme example.

I know I started everything when I was 12 ... such as golf (because any earlier would have warped my bones) taekwondo, and serious hiking (which i still do.) Personally I'd want my kids to learn when they hit puberty. Hunter-gatherer societies for the most part don't let children handle live weapons til then, for good reasons. Til puberty I'll give them BB guns and whatever and make sure they damn well knew not to run amok and screw up with them. One friend of mine capped his neighbor's house with several hundred rounds as a kid and got the hiding of his life way back when. Nothing like a good object lesson to instill discipline.

That's not to say I object to parents letting their kids fire .22s as toddlers, I think rr41mag is a responsible parent. Constant supervision is the way to go no matter what age; that way if there is a problem it can be righted fast. Do I make sense?

[This message has been edited by dragontooth73 (edited October 28, 2000).]
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Old October 29, 2000, 06:33 PM   #6
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My dad started me out with a single action colt .22 when I was about 5. I got to tag along when he went to the range for a few years till he got out of shooting. However, little did he realize that he had created a monster so he ended up buying me a red ryder BB gun to satisfy my need to shoot stuff(the local squirrel population suffered as a result). I think 5 or 6 is fine to teach a child to shoot, but that depends on the child. I know several kids in that age range that I wouldn't let anywhere near a gun, then again, I have no problems handing my SKS over to my 9 year old cousin.

"There are roads that must not be followed, and battles that must not be fought.." --Sun Tzu
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