nightstand gun
Dan Z. for TTAG
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As a recent Pew poll revealed, almost three-quarters of people who own guns own them primarily for personal protection. But no matter how “operator” you may be, you probably don’t sleep with your gun.

Still, you want to be ready in case you hear that proverbial bump in the night. But that raises the question as to where your gun will slumber when you do.

Lots of gun owners, having done their duty to perpetuate the species, have little future gun owners living under their roof. These are curious, clever miniature humans around whom we’re not comfortable leaving a firearm unattended.

The good news is, you are not without options. You could keep a handgun in a small safe in a drawer. You could mount one on your bedframe. Or you could keep one in something secure and lockable in a nearby closet. We all make our choices as to our preferred home defense gun, along with how and where to secure it.

So…what’s your bump-in-the-night gun and where do you keep it?

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    • Worked on a case where the gun owner did the same. He was a retired gun store owner and a certificated NRA Instructor. His grandkids and their children showed up earlier than expected, and he left the gun behind when he went to answer the door. His great grandson, then 3, found the gun. Pretty tragic accident. Although the child survived, he had a massive brain injury.

      • I have electronic muffs near my bed. If I have time I will use them.

        I already have tinnitus thanks to my time in service. I try to not make it worse.

      • When your life is on the line. Don’t waste time worrying about hearing protection. I’ve shot 10s of thousands of rounds without it and can still hear pretty well. Actually never used ear plugs until I started shooting at gun ranges in the late 90s. Still don’t use them when hunting.

        • {Ear protection}

          “I’ve shot 10s of thousands of rounds without it and can still hear pretty well.”

          No, you can’t, you’re just not aware of it.

          Reminds me of the story of a woman who was on an aircraft assembly line in WW2. She mentioned how God-awful loud it was holding the bucking bar while a riveter was driving rivets. How her ears rang badly after work, at least for a little while.

          Then, after a week or so, she noticed it didn’t bother her anymore. Her hearing was permanently damaged, but didn’t know it… 🙁

        • I’d have to concur, if your life is on the line, the hearing damage you’ll suffer is a small price to pay. But I’d make it a general practice to wear hearing protection whenever possible. Picked up a Ruger LCPII in .22LR a while ago and went to the (outdoor) range only to realize I forgot my muffs, but I figured I’d light off 10 rounds anyway – it’s only .22LR after all. Much louder than I anticipated though and 10 rounds was more than enough.

          Hunting makes an interesting compromise. I’m not much of a hunter but used to go pheasant hunting a few times a year and never used hearing protection. I have a little hearing damage but I blame loud work environments more than the handful of unprotected bangs. I think sustained loud noises are more damaging than short bursts, but I could be talking out my ass on that. If it’s practical I would definitely put some plugs in. Electronic plugs or muffs might be a worthy investment for hunting or the range for that matter.

        • Gov. I first bought my e muffs for hunting. You would be amazed at what your enhanced ears can pick out.

          I also have them at hand in the house, just in case.

  1. Two in a nightstand drawer by the bed. I open the drawer before I go to sleep. No munchkins running about, but, if we have visitors, even the adult kind, everything except my EDC gets locked away.

    Also, rifles and the shotgun are one bedroom away in a reinforced closet. That closet is unlocked when I go to bed, just in case I need quick access.

  2. My gat is on a stack of books right next to my bed. Loaded. Ready to go with a light attached to the rail. My rifle is behind the bedroom door. My wife has a gat next to her on a nightstand.All Ready to go. My shottie is in the closet if it ever came to that No little kids. No kidding🙄

    • Ditto. My kids are unmarried and childless adults who do not live with us. I have a .45 in the bottom drawer that I open when I go to bed. Sometimes my EDC is in the neighborhood as well. Plus we have two medium sized dogs that raise a ruckus if they hear things making noise in the night.

  3. There’s a loaded handgun in every room and a rifle and shotgun close at hand also. A handgun on my person shortly after my feet hit the floor.

  4. “Where Do You Keep Your Home Defense Gun at Night?”

    all over the house. we learned our lesson the hard way, so never again… even if it might not happen again. not one place in our home where we can’t access multiple firearms when needed.

  5. A SBR in 5.56 and it’s located on the floor next to the bed, it is also supplemented with two Glocks that are on the nightstand.

  6. Sure…as if I’m going to divulge the locations of my items on a public forum where the glowies will read it…

    • “Close, all you need to know.”

      Literally, someone doesn’t want to find out the hard way… 🙂

  7. Democrats are leading America into a ‘very dangerous place’: Nigel Farage…violent insurgency in national divorce style incoming to rid us of the Democrats effects, apparently.

  8. all my kids are growed up and out of the house
    so my nightstand gun
    is right next to me on the headboard
    its got a light on it
    19 rounds in the mag
    and a 15 round mag next to it
    and if that aint enough
    the gun locker in my bedroom closet is open
    with an Americas Rifle 15 chambered in 7.62×39
    and enough loaded 25 round mags
    to shoot all night and into the next day
    if necessary
    because nobody knows
    when or where
    the next kenosha is going to be

  9. How long would it take a person to bust down your door then be in your bedroom? Has everyone done something to make that time as long as possible? Could a person silently enter your home? Can they walk around without you knowing such is happening? If you could be awakened at night by someone standing over you while in bed you need to fix that ASAP.

    • Daniel,

      Agree 1000%.

      If someone really wants to enter your home, they will be able to do so. The trick is to ensure that they cannot enter your home without making a lot of noise and taking a fair amount of time (at least 30 seconds hopefully) to breach. That will hopefully wake you up and give you enough time to become fully alert.

  10. Au contraire mon frère!
    I absolutely do sleep with my firearm. It’s not under my pillow or in the bed but it is right beside me along with several flashlights as my firearm is not equipped with a light due to it being my carry weapon. Besides it being beside me, also in the room within feet is one of my AR15 .300 AAC pistols WITH A BRACE (fuck you very much ATF as I am double exempt) with light/laser and holographic optics along with a .45 Colt SAA.

    I sleep just fine.

  11. “But no matter how “operator” you may be, you probably don’t sleep with your gun.”

    LOL wut?

    You Fudds gonna Fudd.

  12. As my children (and hopefully any future grandchildren) were not genetically stupid and untrainable, no guns locked up and unusable. This “for the childins a gonna shoot themselves” drivel is just more MSM nonsense. Educate and train your offspring. And idiot kids not welcome here.

    • Yes my girls know not to touch daddy’s weapons. Now if they have friends over the bedroom door stays locked

  13. My self-defense firearms are readily available if someone tries kicking-in my doors while I am sleeping in bed. I won’t say exactly where.

    If I had young children (old enough to snoop around, find a firearm in a nightstand, and pull the trigger), I would install a small shelf on my bedroom wall as close to the ceiling as I can reach (without needing a step stool) and keep a loaded handgun on that shelf. And I would keep a small cloth over it to prevent dust from being a problem as well as ensuring that young children’s eyes cannot see the handgun up on that shelf. Finally, I would ensure that my young children did not see me install that shelf and never ever saw me store or retrieve my handgun from that shelf.

    That hypothetical shelf which I just described is about as secure as anything and yet enables instantaneous access. Note that a young child who is too young to train to NOT shoot a readily accessible firearm would almost never be interested in getting up to a small shelf with a piece of cloth on it–and would almost never be able to get up there anyway.

  14. When in a panic, you will do what you always do, or what you see on TV. My EDC, on my belt, on my pants, contains a flashlight, weapon, keys, and other items that I may need in a panic and at night. So when things go bump, I just put on my pants. Since the pants are on my nightstand, I’m ready (well, I hope so.). Most of the time other things get me out of bed concerned, so there’s my practice.

  15. CZ P-10 F 45 Auto beside the bed in a Hornady RAPiD Night Guard Safe along with a spare 13 round mag. Also have multiple locked doors between my room and all exterior access points.

  16. My daughter went through a four step process with firearms familiarization. Step one when she was very little was don’t touch, dangerous! Etep two was a boring lecture a few years later that made her not even curious about them. step 3 was take her along to be present while shooting with hearing protection which made her severely dislike guns. Step four she wanted to shoot, so we had a couple of sit-down sessions going over the basics of Ben safety and how dangerous guns can be when used irresponsibly, but how valuable they can be when used properly. this included how to unload most common weapon types that she’s likely to see, the risks of other kids who have not been well educated on guns, and finally range time. She then took a wildlife management course in 7th grade which included the Texas hunter safety class.

    She knows where the closest self-defense weapons are in the house. since age 10 she has carried an AR with a 10 inch barrel in the field for hunting no she has not had a chance at a good shot in a few times we’ve gone together.

    When her friends know that she is allowed to shoot guns and knows the rules of gun safety, her friends have asked if I could teach them the rules of gun safety and all the things that I have taught her and I always tell them I would be glad to however they have to have permission from both their parents…

    obviously there’s a lot more to wear and how you keep a gun safe that’s easily accessible but the biggest concern for that is unauthorized use among individuals that you want to trust.

  17. Before turning in for the night, I always check my entire house and make sure every window and door is secure. .40 on the nightstand, two dogs that go ballistic when someone comes to the door. My shottie in arms reach under the bed. Warning signs outside about the dogs. So bring it.

  18. Mini human is now mid 20’s and has been gone for about 4 years.
    When she was under my roof, everything was locked up in various safes with the only keys on my person. When I got home, whatever was on my belt was what got put on the nightstand.
    Different now that she’s gone. A few around the house just in case.

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