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I've decided to get the Model 60 3" revolver as my first handgun. Seems simple and straightforward, it's lightweight, can be used as a conceal carry and is great for backpacking. My main priority is backpacking, as I've successfully talked my way out of every fight I've nearly been in with humans. But now that I'm a parent, I'm more and more spooked by the Oregon wilderness, and I don't want to feel paranoid every time I put on my hiking boots. And I'm tired of car camping. I want to see some wilderness! So I've settled on the S&W Model 60 3".

Here's what I need to figure out:
  • I want a laser that fits the Model 60...What laser should I get?
  • I want a chest holster that fits the Model 60 WITH a laser... What chest holster should I get that fits a laser?
  • I want a small safe that I can bolt to my truck floorboard and an identical safe for my garage... What small safe should I get?
  • I want ammo for target practice and ammo for self defense in the wilderness. What ammo should I get?
  • I need a concealed carry permit and gun safety class. Should I do that before of after buying a gun?
  • Parents, how do you ensure that your kids never, under any circumstance, have access to your firearms?
The most pressing questions are bullet point #2 and #6 (sorry, bad pun).

If anyone wants to share their thoughts, thanks for your expertise. And I'm not looking to be steered away from the Model 60.

Cheers!
 

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I don't have the answer or even an opinion on some of your questions.

But I'll say that the only way that your kids will never, under any circumstance, have access to your firearm is to never, under any circumstance, own one. That risk can be made extremely low, but not zero unless you don't own one.

Be aware that sights only shoot to point of aim at two points on the bullet's trajectory--one close and another not so close. It's the same with lasers, scopes or iron sights--one close and the other not so close.

The Model 60 is chambered for .357 Magnum ammo. Most people, especially newbys, find that most unpleasant. Start with .38 Special 148 grain wadcutter ammo for your first shooting sessions. You can move up to more powerful ammo from there as your comfort level increases.

Concealed carry and gun safety classes won't teach you how to shoot the gun, only some basics about how to shoot the thing without injuring yourself or others.

The more I think about it, maybe a second gun would be a better way to learn to shoot. Get a .22 revolver and learn to shoot with it, THEN take on the Model 60. You can get rid of it later if you don't feel the need to keep it and probably not lose any money, especially in these whacked-out times.

Finding the ammo needed to learn to shoot will be much more difficult than it used to be. The .22 will help with that.
 

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Hey Aaron,

Welcome to S&W...

Not much on lasers....much SLOWER than acquiring the front sight....(and I have crap luck with batteries)...

For a woods walk? I would recommend a 4" 686. Practice with light .38 ammo. Get that DOUBLE ACTION TRIGGER STROKE "down pat"...FRONT SIGHT needs to STAY ON TARGET.

With a good BIG FOOT GUN BELT and a GOOD HOLSTER (suspenders?) one can carry a 4" revolver OWB day in day out. (I have a pancake rig for my M 15, and one for 5" 625)

Then? when you hit the lotto, a M 18 for practice work (they are scarce as hen's teeth, now) LOL

Just my two cents. (coffee is on....):LOL:

509488


Later, Mark
 

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Hey Aaron,

To the kids part of the question?

I have four sons (youngest is now 34) ...

I gave them all their own .22 rifles as they were "responsible" in my eyes. (age 5 to age 8)

When they wanted to play (shotgun hulls make grand targets, just put a couple rocks in them) I would take them to the range (every two weeks or so)...

They learned quickly to respect firearms.

EVERY GUN IS ALWAYS LOADED.

ALWAYS BE SURE OF BACKSTOP.

NEVER POINT A FIREARM at ANYTHING YOU ARE NOT WILLING TO DESTROY.

KEEP THE BOOGER PICKER OFF THE BANG SWITCH UNTIL READY TO SHOOT.

NEVER. NEVER handle firearms whilst others are downrange.

ALWAYS! ALWAYS OBEY ALL RANGE COMMANDS at a INSTANT! (two sons shot Service Rifle for a good while)

In short, EDUCATE the young unz (doing so with GrandBrats, now) in FIREARM SAFETY/USAGE.

Later, Mark+
 

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I have 8 kids and a goodly number of firearms. While the guns are safely secured, the only real way to prevent accidents with kids and firearms is to remove the allure of the things.

Familiarize your kids with the firearm (MAKING TRIPLY SURE ITS UNLOADED) . let then hold it , cycle the action if they can , open the cylinder etc.

Tell them that any time they want to see it, they can come to you and you'll show them

But, also tell them, that if they mess with the gun without you, their ass is grass.

Repeat Mark's ALL CAPS instructions above to them repeatedly.

We all have a lot of potentially dangerous things around the house, tools, saws, etc. A firearm is just another one.

More here under Kids and guns
https://www.corneredcat.com/contents/
 

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Another vote for no lasers. Hard for me to use and just another device that may fail when you need it most. Open sights and as Mark said about front sight has been proven in many competitions.
Children; we started training ours about 4 or five on firearm safety. We kept our guns hidden but they knew what to do if the found a firearm (get an adult and if someone else's home, leave). The Grandchildren are older now and practice safety religiously.
As far as training, would get it after you get your revolver. Classes I have seen, teach you safety, maintenance, and actual shooting your gun. My guns I use for everyday self defense are never locked unless cannot take in someplace (which are very few) then is in safe in vehicle.
 

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Welcome to the Forum, and to wonderful world of fire arm ownership. What Mark said is pretty much how I did it with my kids, and how my Dad did with us, growing up.
Dad would let us look at any gun he owned, as long as he had unloaded it, and handed it to us, and we kept the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
Shooting was the same thing... As long as he was involved we could shoot any thing he had. Education, respect for the rules of fire arm safety was always taught, and he never relaxed from these rules. I pretty much followed the same path with my girls.
Guns are always loaded, ALWAYS and have to be treated as such. Mis-handled guns will kill some one just a quickly as an intruder with a gun. They are as safe as you make them.. Just a tool and nothing more.

A small safe for your vehicle is not a bad idea, in case you have to leave your firearm, while going some place where carry is prohibited. I don't leave guns in my vehicles at night, as you are potentially arming a would be assailant.

Home gun safe options are almost endless, but locked up wont do you much good if you need it in a hurry.
I always have one, or two, that stays out of the safe, and is where I can manage / use it, and the rest are locked up.

The gun you suggested is a good choice, for two legged predators. However, in your area, it may be a little light for bears if hiking and camping off the grid. It sounds like you are young, and hike, so you can probably carry a heavier gun, in a larger caliber, for your hiking adventures.
What ever you choose, remember a small gun that you will carry all the time, is better than a large gun that is not carried because it's too heavy.
Not to give mixed signals here, but I have been packing a gun most of my adult life, and one size never really fits all, and that is why many of us have multiples.
What ever you choose, dont over look a .22 rim fire for practice. Lots or options out there, and 22 ammo is always cheaper per round than anything else.
Lots of luck in your new adventure, and please keep us posted on how you proceed..
 

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Welcome to the forum. The 3 inch model 60 Pro is a great gun, but not very pleasant to shoot with full powered magnums. I am another who votes no to a laser. They are about worthless outside on a bright day beyond 15 feet, and you find yourself looking for the dot instead of focusing on shooting. Not sure if anyone makes a chest rig for a small gun like the m60. I agree with the others on kids too. Familiarize them with the gun and safety rules
 

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For a woods gun, either a belt or shoulder holster. I'd recommend a K/L frame as a first gun. J frame Magnums have sharp recoil and I don't recommend them for novice shooters. 686, anyone? Fun to shoot and easy to carry in a shoulder rig.
 

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No, we’re just enabling his future collection:)
Yep.

Mr. Aaron needs: M-18, M-17, M-60, M-15, M-28, M-25-2, M-25-5, M-29, M-57...... :LOL:
 
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Whoa... Pilgrim... Welcome to the forum.

If you're new to firearm ownership, I strongly suggest that you seek out a NRA Basic Pistol class taught by an experienced certified NRA instructor (and preferably a volunteer instructor at a program sponsored by a gun club). You'll generally get smaller more personalized classes, and better coaching along with delivery of the course materials.

Take your classes before you buy something if that is possible (the instructors sometimes provide handguns for classes like this). You may find you like something else better.

You might also meet some people with good firearm knowledge that are local.

I personally never carry a firearm with a laser for a couple of reasons. One is that with proper training, you are unlikely to ever need it. The basic class will teach you the fundamentals of marksmanship. The second is that in air that has particulate matter in it (like fog or smoke), the laser will lead an assailant right back to your location.

I would not recommend a chest holster for a few reasons. The most glaring is that you constantly violate "Rule 1" which is never to point a firearm (loaded or unloaded) at your own flesh, or anything that you don't intend to target. Try wearing one and avoiding your swinging arms. A better choice is probably an outside the waistband belt holster on a proper gun belt.

Use standard velocity FMJ ammunition for practice, and hollow point ammunition for self defense. If you want to use Magnum ammunition for self defense, be sure to train with it to learn to control and recover from recoil.

Your firearms should always be locked away in your home and vehicle except when you are carrying them. I prefer gun safes with mechanical (Simplex) pushbutton locks. No batteries to ever fail when you need them most. These are more costly than keyed safes, which can be had very inexpensively - but which require access and manipulation of the key to open the box. The lock box should always be permanently attached to your home or vehicle.

When your children are old enough, they need to learn about firearms to take the mystique out of them. Start with a .22LR training rifle like a Ruger or one of the S&W .22LR AR-15 look a likes.

If you do want a "K" frame revolver, look for a model 65 or 66 that has been used but not abused.

In any case, congratulations on your decision. It's wise not to "go it alone"...
 

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Hey, a lot of people will dump on lasers. One thing the laser is excellent for, is dry fire. Set the laser so it hovers about an inch over your front sight at 15 feet. Dryfire the weapon, and see how the dot bobs. VERY good indicator of what you are doing wrong. Long term you might not want to keep it on the gun all the time, or use it in a self defense situation, but for training, it's amazing how fast it helps you learn.

Also, whatever else you get, get a strong side belt holster. This is the best way to carry a handgun, and there are a great many reasons why, not the least of which is it's the hardest place for another person to get their hand on your weapon. Chest and cross draws are excellent if you are in a car all day, but outside of a car, strong side is best.
 

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Ditto on most of the above advice. I grew up in the 1960s, with a RR police officer Father. Guns were always in the house (see the below pic of myself and my Mother when I was 2 years 3 months old), but they were (mostly) in a cabinet with a locked door (there were two pistols in my parents' room, but where little kids couldn't get to them).

Education about firearms and firearm safety were some of the first things I learned (after I could understand the noises the big people were making), and fear of what would happen if I touched one without permission was always much stronger than my curiosity :p.

I was taught how to shoot a rifle (a small single-shot bolt-action .22LR) when I was 7, and a pistol (a small .22LR revolver [S&W 22/32 Kit Gun, Model of 1953])* when I was 8 - both are still in the house now.

And I agree with the idea of finding a gun range with rental firearms, so you can make sure exactly what type/model you feel most comfortable and proficient with - apparently similar models/makes can fit and point surprisingly different from each other.


Since you will be hiking off-trail (you did say "wilderness) make sure that whatever holster rig you get SECURELY holds your pistol... with a belt holster a good snap loop or flap is much better than some kind of open-top "friction retention" gimmick.


* A very good secondary reason to buy a small .22LR revolver, easier to teach a child with.

Note that many studies show that children with early and repeated firearm safety education are FAR less likely to injure themselves or someone else with a firearm - and very likely to keep others from doing so as well.
509760
 

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Another strong suggestion to get the S&W model 686. You do not need a long barrel one. Mine has a 2 1/2" barrel and it totally accurate out to 25 yards, which is the longest distance I've shot it at. They are not only totally accurate, but heavy enough to absorb the recoil even from a .357. The model 60 is accurate in the hands of a trained shooter, but is NOT going to absorb much recoil, even when shooting .38 specials.

I have a laser grip on my 686 because it came that way. I use the laser ONLY for initial training, to teach people how to keep the gun totally steady as they pull the trigger. FACT: If you can see the dot from around 6 to 9 feet away, your sights are not lined up properly! Also, in the daylight, outdoors, from 5 yards away you most probably can't see that little dot anyway.

I have seen way too many people at a range "chase the dot" all around a large paper target, and never get one shot in the middle. Learn to shoot properly, using the sights! And get lessons. And practice, practice, practice.

As for a holster, your choice after you have the gun and learn to use it properly. You can get an el cheapo padded nylon one for outdoor range practice, and indoor ranges do not let you draw from a holster anyway.
 

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Welcome to the forum!
That too....lol I agree lasers are useless. I have one on my Kimber Crimson (Trace) 45. Only things it's good for is a cat toy, cats love to try and catch the dot. Other than that, basically useless.
 
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