Good starting age?

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by anygunanywhere » Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:13 pm

By the time my boys were in high school they had shot all my firearms including the .357 and .44 mag pistols and the oldest one kilt a hog with my 7 MM Rem Mag.

They had their own 12 ga shootguns when they were seniors. Kept the shells in their rooms.

My oldest was a senior in HS. My brother lived next door and was a closet hoplophobe. He was scared for his kids being in my house. I told him if his kids styayed out of my bedroom they would be fine. He questioned my sons' ability with the firearms in the house. I told my oldest to go fetch my SA GI model I kept in condition 1. He went to the master BR, got it out of the closet, dropped the mag, cleared the chamber, brought it to me locked open and placed it all in my hand. I put it back in condition 1, then safed it again, gave it to my son and he returned it to my BR and placed it in condition 1 on the shelf.

My brother now packs.

Children have an amazing capacity to learn and love the shooting sports.

Teach them the four rules first. They must master the four riules before they ever handle any firearms. If they ever break the four rules they must be disciplined and cannot return to handling firearms until they understand that the four rules are sacred and cannot be broken.

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by puma guy » Mon Mar 18, 2013 5:01 pm

AndyC wrote:
rthillusa wrote:My oldest grandson is 14 and can shoot a .270 and skeets with the best of them
Sorry, shoot what?
:lol: Why, it's those black flying birds with ever so brightly colored accents; both male and female. Having a decidedly kaolin texture and a savory pitch like piquant, they are best done up in a casserole with some Red Dot seasoning. I do think shooting them with a .270 is overkill, however. ;-) ;-)

My 5 year old grand daughter is already cocking and shooting a Daisy Red Ryder at her dad's empty Bud Light cans. With supervision of course.
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Re: Good starting age?


Post by Sangiovese » Thu Mar 21, 2013 12:42 pm

As many others have said, I think a typical 13 year old can safely and effectively shoot a 9mm, even a little one like a nano. But I also agree that a small 9mm is not the ideal first boom/recoil experience.

Starting with a .22 allows any new shooter to build a comfort level with the whole experience and to achieve success. It may only take a few minutes with a .22 to realize that the shooter is ready to move on to something more substantial, but in my opinion it is well worth the time (and the hassle/expense if you need to rent one) to start small.
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Re: Good starting age?


Post by RottenApple » Thu Mar 21, 2013 12:55 pm

My kids are now 14 & 16 (boy & girl, respectively) and have been shooting for the last 5 years or so. Everything from .22 to 30-06.

I myself was around 8 or 9 years old (Pawpaw can confirm the actual age) the first time I shot my grandfather's (now mine :mrgreen: ) Rohm .38 revolver. And I'd been sitting at Pop's feet while he cleaned his guns long before that (just watching, never touching - to my recollection, that is).

My philosophy is to start them on safety as soon as they are old enough to walk. Simple stuff at first: "Don't Touch!" And gradually increasing in complexity when the child is ready for it (as opposed to a particular age). To my way of thinking, age isn't the deciding factor; Maturity is. I know 30, 40, and 50 year olds (and some who are still older) who aren't mature enough to have anything more dangerous than silly putty!

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by steve817 » Thu Mar 21, 2013 1:16 pm

shillow wrote:OK, my 13 year old son wants to go to the range with me and being springbreak this would be a good opportunity. My question is do you think your average 13 year old boy would have a problem shooting a 9mm? In particular a nano 9mm. I personally think he can handle it without issue and he's like most other boys gone through the usual kids and guns route, nerd, airsoft and bb guns.
I know accuracy will be difficult with the nano or any other hand gun for a first time user but it will be more about just shooting and hitting anywhere on the paper. He's very responsible with any type of firearm, including his airsoft and I've taught him how to handle a firearm responsibly.

How old were your kids when they first went to the range?

My daughter who is now 12 shoots my full size PX4 in 9mm. At seven yards she was consistently shooting in the #9 ring His smaller hands may offer slight advantage with the Nano, on the other hand the small size of the pistol my be a little uncomfortable in terms of felt recoil. I'd start by loading one round in it and letting him try it. Also pick an indoor range where you have the option of moving the target closer.

ETA...Oh I bought her a 10/22 when she was 10.
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Re: Good starting age?


Post by Justinbhutto » Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:52 am

i started shooting when i was 5. got a 22 for christmas. i reccomend starting with small caliber as above, don't jump to 9mm

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by alvins » Mon Apr 01, 2013 7:57 pm

my nephew is 7 i still dont think he is mature enough for a real gun.he wants to play lacrosse and asked when they let you hit each other with the sticks.

my neice is 8 i think she could handle it but has no interest even trying.

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by rthillusa » Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:57 pm

Sorry for the understandable confusion from a poorly worded post. My grandson - 14 handles the .270 well and can bust the dickens out of skeets with a 20 guage Ithaca pump I loaned him. Althought thinking about it, stationary skeets at an appropriate distance might make for some fun, affordable reactionary targets.

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by shillow » Thu Apr 04, 2013 5:18 pm

Wow, I didn't realize I had this many replys since I last replied (for some reason I wasn't getting the "response emails". Anyway, all great advice and I'm going to take the advice to start him with a 22. He is mature and I have been teaching him about gun safety and how to handle a firearm so I do believe he's ready for the next level. Heck I've been eyeing 22 rifles for a while and think that would be a fun start for him and a cheap fun alternative for me also. I didn't get a chance to take him to the range during springbreak but I'll look around for a decent 22 rifle for later this spring/early summer. I don't know much about what makes one 22 better than the next so I'll have to start looking into brands/options ect. Anyone have a good recomendation please pass it on.

Thanks again for all the great advice :cheers2:

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by billbeam » Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:27 pm

I bought my Grandson a Henry Golden Boy 22. I hope I'm around when he's old enough to shoot.
Difficult to see but his birthday is November 24, 2012.

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by Moby » Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:38 pm

At our meet up at Elm Fork in Dallas my daughter went shooting for the first time.

She's 13 and loved my Glock 30 .45 and AR 10 .308
She would have nothing to do with the .22LR
She also liked my .38 snubbie revolver.
We spent two hours on gun safety and handgun/rifle class at home the night before
She had to memorize the four rules for gun safety. Then I was with her at the line.
She did great.


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Re: Good starting age?


Post by xrays1 » Wed Apr 17, 2013 8:37 pm

I started my 13 year old shooting about 7 months ago. He loves to shoot my Browning Buckmark pistol (.22 lr), mostly because its easy and fun to shoot. He also enjoys my Marlin 25 (also .22 lr). He really gets a charge out of shooting my 12 guage when we take it out.. He has no problems handling a Glock 22 (.40 S&W) or a Winchester 30-30. Ultimately, like others have said, starting off small and working up at the childs comfort level works best. Good luck and have fun teaching your son a fun, lifelong sport.

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Re: Good starting age?


Post by drjoker » Sat May 18, 2013 4:36 am

When they can walk and talk, they can shoot, as young as 1 year old, supervised of course. Supervised doesn't mean that y'all shoot together. Supervised means that your child shoots while you watch within arms length, ready to grab the gun away if necessary.

Start 'em out on the noisy cricket (a light one shot .22 lr rifle marketed for children) on a bench rest. I wouldn't allow shooting from standing nor allow them to hold up the gun until they're teens, though, unless the kid is really well coordinated, athletic, and responsible. I also wouldn't allow handguns until they're teens either, unless the kid is really coordinated, athletic and responsible. Until then, an airgun pistol and rifle are good training tools.

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