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You fell asleep with a stogie in your hand and now your house is on fire. You have a significant arsenal but can only save what you can carry. What do you do, Jack? What do you do? The eclectic folks at have posted photo submissions from all over in answer to this little thought experiment. It’s always interesting to see what’s most important to people, what they value most among their treasured possessions. A few of the pics chosen included a bangstick among the items that would make it into the metaphorical lifeboat. Not bad, especially considering that 20% of the pics chosen are from NYC. Now it’s your turn. Don’t talk to me about the fire resistance rating of your gun safe. Since you can only take what you can carry, you probably can’t rescue more than one – maybe two – guns along with your other important paraphernalia. So what’ll it be? Besides the s’mores fixins, which firearms will you drag from your flaming flat?


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  1. I have three, two rifles and a shotgun, that are irreplaceable for me. I can fit into your scenario by putting one rifle on each shoulder, each one has a sling, and carrying the shotgun in my hands.

    My late grandfather handed down to me his Savage 99E in .300 Savage and his Ithaca Model 37 Featherlight in 12 gauge. He also bought me my first rifle, a Marlin 39M in .22 rimfire.

  2. I’d grab my LRB M14, my Ruger No. 1 in 7.62×39 (yes, you read that chambering correctly), and as many XDMs as I could stuff in my pockets.


  3. If I had the presence of mind I would be focused on high replacement cost items. For example, I got a really good deal on a scope a while back, only cost $500 but it would be ~$1200 to replace.

    BTW a couple of years ago I was driving home late one night and saw a newish mcmansion with probably three stations worth of trucks surrounding it, watching it burn into its foundation. No idea what the story was but I do know that if it was occupied by a gun owner who stored his guns in a fire-resistant safe, that there wasn’t no safe left by the time that fire got put out.

  4. My Mossberg 500 is the only gun not in my shiny new fire-resistant and long-to-open safe or my car, so I guess he gets to go. If I can open the safe in time, I’d grab the Contender (G1) and all its bits I can carry and my Buckmark Camper with those nice UDX grips and scope mount.

  5. Easy, unclip the Warne ‘fast release safe rings’ on the ol’ gun safe, whip it up on the furniture dolly, and out we goes!

  6. Another “what last gun” scenario.

    Since my safe is at the far end of the basement, probably nothing in there. Whatever’s close to hand, which varies.

  7. I own two handguns and one long gun. No problem taking all three. If I can’t take any then well insurance can replace all three.

  8. I’d grab the wife, the dog and maybe the photo albums or the computer (with irreplaceable photos on the hard drive.) Most of the guns are in the fire-resistant safe and the one that isn’t can be replaced.

  9. Not counting what’s in the safe? Cause if the fire is bad enough to destory the safe then I don’t have time to worry about its contents. If I could only carry what’s at hand it would be my Beretta 92 Compact, and the wife can carry her Px4 Subcompact. If I had enough time I’d like to grab the 870 Wingmaster my dad gave me. Aside from the protection of a safe everything else can be replaced with insurence.

  10. I’m pretty sure I could knock out the screen and toss all my long guns into the yard pretty quickly. That would probably buy me enough time to save them. Mill, lathe, reloading bench and all my motorcycle tools are worth more but I’m screwed there. Just the P.C. (or my back up drives more likely) after that. I don’t own any personal photos or mementos so I’m clear there. It would suck to lose my music collection but no way could I move even a fraction of it in time.

  11. A man running out of a burning house with a rifle in tow might get shot by an armed first-responder in this era.

  12. My great-great-great Grandfather’s .44 Colt SAA he used as a Texas Ranger, and the sword he used in the civil war. And if I had room, my great-Grandfather’s Remington improved model 6, my Grandfather’s Ruger M77 .22-250, and my dad’s ruger M77 .270.

  13. My S&W model 57 I bought in ’82 and the Barreta 70s .22. Give me two more seconds and I’d grab the Colt model M Hammerless in.32.

  14. My Glock 23 and whatever pistol was loose around the house. If I was daring I would ditch the Springfield series 70 1911 from ’74 and dig my Bushmaster LR .308 from the case beneath my bed. Damn thing was not cheap but…only if I ain’t think it’d get me killed.

    Bottom line, the Glock 23 and the case for it with all the nice caliber swaps, springs and mags in it. That gun was my first and if there was one gun I was going to risk my health for it’d be that.

  15. A lot of people taking this way too literally.

    H&K P7M8. It’s not only my favorite handgun, it would be difficult to replace. It’s not in production anymore, and even the company that did the hard chrome job is no longer in the business. Not to mention that it rides around in a Milt Sparks holster, and have you seen their lead times lately?

  16. Honestly, what most people seem to ignore in all this is ammunition.

    The biggest reason why firefighters will decide to let a building burn to the ground rather than actually attempt to put it out is that they deem the structure unsafe to enter. Ammunition cooking off is a big reason to consider a building unsafe to enter.

    Thus, how/where one stores ammunition deserves a great deal of thought.


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