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Offer to Help - Weapons (Firearms)


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#1 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 22 May 2013 - 05:18 PM

I just thought I would post this in the event that anyone had questions concerning weapons, speicifcally firearms (both long arms as well as handguns). 

 

I know they play a large part in some manuscripts, and potentially can detract from a  story when not used correctly. 

 

Case in point: "he slipped a new clip into the pistol before he engaged the other targets."

 

To gun weenies, this is a major faux pas

 

I can offer advice from a law enforcement standpoint, as well as an instructional one.

 

Feel free to ask any questions you might have.


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#2 Tom Preece

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Posted 22 May 2013 - 08:19 PM

This is valuable stuff, Andrew.  I learned from experience.  Fortunately I've got my own gun guy, a sometimes firearms salesman and a long time soldier who pointed out to me that I couldn't put a silencer on a .357 Magnum....



#3 Selene Bell

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Posted 22 May 2013 - 10:05 PM

Ooh, I'm going to take you up on this offer. I have a former NYPD patrol officer who uses multiple guns throughout my MS. Do any of these strike you as terribly wrong? (Also, what would the lowest ranked NYPD officer be?)

 

* S&W .38 Special -- she carries it strapped to her ankle for protection while wearing jeans on a Friday night date. (Although I don't really know whether concealed-carry is permissable in New York. In Ohio, you just need a permit.)

 

* Sig Sauer P226 -- haven't decided if this is her old service sidearm or just a gun she got herself. (If you left the force, would you turn in your gun or get to keep it?) This is what some of the local law-enforcement agencies use.

 

* Ruger Mark III -- She's given two of these as a gift (I suppose for dual-wielding, though I feel kind of silly typing that) and thinks they look cool but kind of thinks of them as newbie guns.

 

Any of your thoughts would be super appreciated! Thank you, thank you in advance!


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#4 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 22 May 2013 - 10:58 PM

Ooh, a multi question, question......I like a challenge.

 

Lowest rank in the NYPD is police officer, then comes detective. All the remaining ranks are supervisory.

 

NYPD carried .38 caliber revolvers into the mid 90's, after that it was the .9mm (either Sig P226, S&W 5946 or Glock 17). So if she came on after 1995 she would only have a .9mm and not a .38. Only officers on before that time would have a .38. (Model 10 for service, Model 36 as a backup).

 

Also note that beginning in the late 80's the revolvers and then pistols were heavily modified to prevent the hammer from being cocked (accidental discharge problem). So if you have your cop cock their gun, its a gross mistake.

 

As far as the Ruger Mark III, was never issued so it wouldn't normally be carried. Besides it's a .22 caliber and not good for much outside of target shooting or mob executions.

 

If officers retire / medical discharge they would normally retain their service weapon.

 

You say she is "former" NYPD, what caused her to leave, as this would have an impact on her ability to carry. Let me know and I will try and explain it better.


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#5 Selene Bell

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 01:56 PM

Great information! Thank you so much!

 

Basically, she was only on the force for a few short years, and it would have been in the 2000s. She and her partner were serving a warrant, and the suspect shot her partner through a window. She shot back but then shot the guy in the head after he was down. (Not like standing over him execution-style, though.) It became a big story and community people were in an uproar, but the internal investigation cleared it as a justified shooting and a grand jury declined to indict. After that, she decided to quit, figuring she was more of a distraction than an asset at that point.

 

And the Rugers were bought for her by someone who doesn't know much about guns. I'll have her think of them as target shooters instead of newbie guns. Thanks!


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#6 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 02:06 PM

OK, then she would have been issued a .9mm, one of the three I listed above.

 

If she quit, then she would not have the same carry privileges afforded to retired officers (either normal retirement or medical). That means she would have to apply for a permit to carry, since those are local, you are dealing with a host of geographical issues.

 

You've got some wiggle room to work. Does your story line require her to be armed? 


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#7 Selene Bell

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 05:58 PM

Yes, it does. And also, a huge thanks! This is all stuff I can use to make my story better. I'm going to say she has a carry permit and leave it that, for simplicity's sake.


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#8 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 06:04 PM

Just remember that "carry permit" comes with geographical restrictions and is not honored in all locations or across state borders. Not sure if that will impact your story line.


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#9 Selene Bell

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 11:02 PM

It shouldn't. When she does leave the state, her guns are packed away, and she doesn't use them again until she's out of the country.


Confessions of a Binge Reader -- www.selene-bell.com -- for query tips, book recommendations and other interesting minutia

 

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#10 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 09:51 AM

Glad I could help, let me know if there is anything else you need.


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#11 blane

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Posted 09 June 2013 - 04:56 PM

So I know absolutely zero about guns.  For example, what's wrong with the example with the clip? XD

Could you offer a starting point for some guns? A YA novel in an apocalyptic setting, my hero needs to be armed but I have no idea what he's carrying.

 

A name of a common hand gun? 

And name two different rifles that would be the lightest?  For hunting.

And maybe a little info about how to load them.

 

Thanks!


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#12 LucidDreamer

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Posted 09 June 2013 - 05:01 PM

Hmmmm... What would your typical government agent type carry? FBI, CIA, that sort.  Thanks!



#13 Phil Peterson

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Posted 09 June 2013 - 05:36 PM

So I know absolutely zero about guns.  For example, what's wrong with the example with the clip? XD

 

 

ooh! I know this! What people usually refer to as a "clip" is actually a magazine.

 

A clip is just a group of bullets locked/"clipped" into some type of holder. Ever see people reload a revolver with that little cluster of 6 bullets? That's a clip. They also make clips specifically for loading bullets back into a magazine (as opposed to snapping them in one at a time).

 

Sorry for hijacking; I was just excited that I knew this  :smile:

 

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#14 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 09 June 2013 - 07:31 PM

Blane

 

Realistically, it will depend on several issues. Male or female, age / size. Also, post apocalyptic your going to have issues with ammunition. 

 

Generic wise:

 

Handgun I'd say a Glock 17, 9mm. They are durable, have a high capacity magazine (17 rounds) and the ammo is plentiful.

 

Rifle I would say either an AR-15 (civilian version of the M-16). It's a .223 round (again plentiful ammo) and will get the job done. Plus it's military so finding parts, magazines will be easier. An alternate would be an AK-47, maybe not the greatest long range accuracy, but it's even more plentiful in terms of parts, ammo (7.62 x 39) overall ruggedness.

 

LD

 

Firearms general vary by agency. i.e. Secret Service carries a Sig Sauer P229 (.357 Sig) while I believe the FBI currently carries a Glock Model 22 (.40). As CIA agents actually try to avoid "issues" I think the use of a regular firearm would not be prudent, so they probably adjust it to a need specific case.

 

Phil

 

Partially correct. There are magazines and clips. Think of it this way. Magazines hold the cartridges and have their own feeding device that helps load the next round into chamber. Clips hold the ammo in place, without a feeding mechanism, and the gun does the work of chambering the cartridge. 

 

Technically the speed loader you showed is a completely different animal in that it only loads the gun and then is discarded.


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#15 blane

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Posted 09 June 2013 - 10:47 PM

I have a 17 year old girl and a boy running around shooting at monsters. I think the hardest part will be having them find these weapons, as nobody would really leave them around.  I guess I could just write in that they raid someone else's stockpile. XD

 

So do certain guns use magazines not clips?

 

Your info is really helpful! Thanks so much! 


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#16 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 10 June 2013 - 09:21 AM

Then I would stick with a simple handgun, Glock, as they are plentiful and they use a magazine.

 

You'll only run into the clip issue on old military style rifles or revolvers so don't worry about it. 


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#17 Midnight Whimsy

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Posted 10 June 2013 - 10:17 AM

Hi Andrew,

 

Thanks so much for sharing your experience and knowledge! I have a few questions for you, if you don't mind.

 

In my manuscript, my main character is a 17-year-old girl who's pretty thoroughly trained in different weaponry. At one point, she carries a concealed handgun for protection. I wanted a very small gun that's easy to conceal so I chose the Glock 26 based on a Wikipedia search. Is that a realistic choice? How many bullets would it hold? How would it be loaded (looks like a magazine in the photos)? I assume it would have some kind of safety, like a switch?

 

If you have a better suggestion for a gun, all the same questions for that one instead. :) The setting is a semi-dystopian so laws and permits and whatnot aren't a concern.

 

Thanks so much!

 

M.W



#18 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 10 June 2013 - 01:18 PM

MW

 

A Glock 26 is a perfect concealed carry weapon, especially for a female. It uses the 9mm round which is readily available. The magazine carries 10 rounds, so with one in the chamber you have 11. There is no "traditional" safety on a Glock, it's built into the system. It's called "Safe Action". There is no an internal locking mech in the rear that you need a key for. The key is unique to the gun, sorta like a house key. It renders the gun inoperable, and unable to be disassembled. But it isn't something I would even bother to write about. 

 

In terms of choices there are actually plenty. Almost every manufacturer makes a number of gun designed for concealed carry. That being said, I don't think you could go wrong with the Glock, considering their reputation for durability.

 

Hi Andrew,

 

Thanks so much for sharing your experience and knowledge! I have a few questions for you, if you don't mind.

 

In my manuscript, my main character is a 17-year-old girl who's pretty thoroughly trained in different weaponry. At one point, she carries a concealed handgun for protection. I wanted a very small gun that's easy to conceal so I chose the Glock 26 based on a Wikipedia search. Is that a realistic choice? How many bullets would it hold? How would it be loaded (looks like a magazine in the photos)? I assume it would have some kind of safety, like a switch?

 

If you have a better suggestion for a gun, all the same questions for that one instead. :) The setting is a semi-dystopian so laws and permits and whatnot aren't a concern.

 

Thanks so much!

 

M.W


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#19 Midnight Whimsy

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 01:40 PM

MW

 

A Glock 26 is a perfect concealed carry weapon, especially for a female. It uses the 9mm round which is readily available. The magazine carries 10 rounds, so with one in the chamber you have 11. There is no "traditional" safety on a Glock, it's built into the system. It's called "Safe Action". There is no an internal locking mech in the rear that you need a key for. The key is unique to the gun, sorta like a house key. It renders the gun inoperable, and unable to be disassembled. But it isn't something I would even bother to write about. 

 

In terms of choices there are actually plenty. Almost every manufacturer makes a number of gun designed for concealed carry. That being said, I don't think you could go wrong with the Glock, considering their reputation for durability.

 

Wow, great info! Thanks so much! So glad I don't have to worry about getting laughed out of publishing by gun-savvy readers. ;)

 

Thank you!

M.W



#20 Andrew Nelson

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 02:30 PM

Well, it is always the little things that either make a great novel or a coulda-been contender. I always recommend sticking with what you know or a basic weapon. Putting bells and whistles on it can just screw you up detail wise.


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