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Beside Smith & Wesson 686 (courtesy The Truth ABout Guns)

I own many guns. They’re all locked up. All except the one gun that’s on my hip. None of the guns in my safe are loaded – not that I find a problem with people locking up loaded guns. I simply don’t. I unload them all first and only put them back clean. But your self defense gun is just that: it’s for self defense. How are you going to be able to protect yourself if you lock up every single gun you own?  That’s why . . .

I carry all the time. All the time…well, OK, no. That’s a lie. I sleep and shower and I don’t shower with my gun (hello, rust) nor do I sleep with it on. During a shower, it goes on top of my medicine cabinet. It’s far enough out of reach that even if one of my kids unlock the bathroom door and get on the toilet, neither can reach the gun.

This is when I’m most vulnerable and when my EDC is the farthest from my hands. It’s also why I don’t take my time showering. I get in, get clean, get out, get dry, get armed.

I put on makeup armed. I dry my hair armed. I clean my house armed. When bedtime rolls around, and I finally remove the gun from my person again, it goes on my nightstand. But first, I remove the round from the chamber. Neither of my young kids are strong enough to chamber a round, and every other gun is locked up.

I do this even though I’ve taught my children gun safety, as an extra precaution. As my children get older (and stronger), I will reevaluate how I store my EDC overnight, depending on my faith in their gun safety knowledge and their mental state. But right now, I’m confident that I’ve balanced safety against intruders with the safety of my children.

I know there are fingertip bedside safes. But as a free American I consider myself free to decide not to use one. To decide how best to keep and bear arms to protect my family from criminals and their own curiosity. If I lived in Massachusetts or San Francisco, I’d be breaking the law.

As informs us:

San Francisco prohibits any person from keeping a handgun within a residence unless the handgun is stored in a locked container or disabled with a trigger lock unless the handgun is carried on the person.Unlike the laws of some other jurisdictions, San Francisco does not exempt a person who keeps his or her handgun within his or her immediate control from the requirements of the statute.

The law was upheld by both the district court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. In upholding the law, the Ninth Circuit recognized that unlike the District of Columbia law at issue in Heller v. District of Columbia, the San Francisco ordinance does not prohibit a person from carrying a loaded handgun while in his or her home. The Court also held that a safely stored gun can be accessed from a safe or enabled within a few seconds. The increased time it takes for a gun owner to access his or her gun is negligible, therefore, it does not place an impermissible burden on the Second Amendment rights of gun owners.

Note the language “unless the handgun is carried on the person”- meaning if you sleep with the gun on you, you’re on the right side of the law (and the wrong side of gun safety). I know the law was written to “protect the children,” but common sense and my experience with firearms says the law puts people – my family – at risk. So, like millions of Americans, I keep a gun by my bed, unsecured. Do you?

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  1. Anyone else do shoulder holsters anymore? I went Safariland (God bless, keep, and speed them) drop-leg in Iraq ‘outside’ the wire. However ‘inside’ the wire I frequently carried Don Johnson style.

    At home I like a shoulder holster. It’s been the only carry method I’ve been able to sleep in/with.

    • I often do shoulder carry , when I am toting around one of my horse revolvers for some reason , but I never leave my house without my appendix IW Kel-Tec .

    • I will occasionally concealed carry one of my BFRs (6-1/2″ .44mag Blackhawk or 6″ GP100) in a shoulder holster in the winter.

    • I can carry a full frame semi-auto (with a mag inserted) and two mags on the other side and it balances out nice (you can tell whether one of your mags is lite on ammo by the side-to-side balance). I like the ones I have (have about ~ 4) not expensive/$20-$25gun-show specials, and I can adjust the weapon position from vertical to horizontal by swapping connector positions. Mine have Velcro hold-down tapes on either side but I haven’t found my self using them very often.

      Very comfortable, can sleep back/front/side in it (another fine benefit of Iraq ;-P ).

      • PS any mf out there tells you where to keep your firearms inyour home, tell them to keep their opinion stored safely in their a_ _.

    • I occasionally carry my model 27 in a shoulder rig; I used to carry it that way all the time. This method has fallen a bit out of a favor for me recently, I’m no longer confident I can be fast enough drawing.

      • + i worry too. And, switching carry methods has to tax/rob you on your muscle memory. I think i do it for comfort, just a good way to not feel like it’s there. It is nearly off-person carry too ~ . Just more likely to have it ‘on’ me, even in bed.

  2. That seems to be a loaded question no pun intended lol. I believe That it’s up to each individual gun owner in the United States to determine the safety level of securing there Firearms that they use for home defense At night In their own manner.

    Now having said that I have a Mossberg 930 breacher 3 feet from my bed fully loaded at all times And a9 millimeter Glock 17 on my nightstand right next to two flashlights and my cell phone And next to me my wife who also is trained to shoot So I think I have the bases covered in anytime I leave the house I always lock all my Firearms up in my gun safe

    And I think that’s what’s important Keep your guns out of the hands that don’t need to have them in them But at the same time Make sure that you have adequate Firearms available to you in the middle of the night when you’re half awake Or I should say asleep and have to get away with in about 3 seconds

    You need to have those Weapons ready for use your not going to have time to unlock something and bring it out or load it and then get ready it takes all of about 7 to 15 seconds to kick in a front door with a.Inch and three-quarter inch deadbolt That’s it that’s how many that’s how long you got about 5 seconds max ten if you live upstairs in a two story house

  3. No, but that’s because I periodically wake up in the middle of the night in a fight to the death struggle with my pillow and blankets, don’t need to add a loaded gun within arms reach of that.

    It goes inside a drawer with a child safety latch mounted inside that could be simply ripped open during an adrenaline dump, and only requires minor fine motor skills to be opened otherwise.

    It is imperfect but offers a balance of safety and availability that I am ok with.

    • Tex,

      Install a small shelf as close to the ceiling as you can reach … and away from anything like a bed or dresser upon which a child could stand to access the shelf. Simply place your loaded handgun up on that shelf every night when you go to bed. You can sleep soundly knowing that your children cannot access it and it is immediately available if you need it at O’Dark Thirty. As an extra precaution, install a small lip around the edge of the shelf to make sure your handgun cannot slide off of the shelf.

      By the time your children are old enough to reach that shelf, they are old enough to KNOW that they MUST leave it alone.

  4. No need to sleep with a gun here, my domesticated house cat prowls my house at night and keeps me safe.

  5. The bulk of my stuff is in safes but my go-to stuff is out and about.
    Don’t have kids and any would-be visitors/sales/evangelicals/cops are met out in the driveway never to be let inside.

  6. My s/d handguns are loaded but when not on my body they are in quick access safes of which I have several. The s/d shotguns are loaded (safety on) and secured with a quick access solo vault. I have older kids who bring their goofy friends around so….

  7. My edc is condition 3 and usually on my desk when not on me. Same with the pump shotgun I have leaning in the corner. I don’t have kids though.

  8. I do not lock up my carry gun. But it goes up where the kids can’t reach and where I can’t get to it in my sleep.

  9. Been a habit of mine for many many years. To access the gun at night, I’d have to get out of bed, reach one spot for the gat and another plain view spot for the mag.
    I always felt this prevented a nightmare within a nightmare…

    • I’ve got PTSD From some bad things that happen to me / in the desert But I don’t sleep walk I don’t have sleep apnea so I don’t have any problems With sleep walking and getting up and doing things that I’m not aware of I think if you have those problems then yes you’re probably best to store the magazine and pistol in a secure location separate of one another weather in the same locked box or quick access say for spot on your nightstand with the bag in the actual nightstand something like that would probably be in your best interest But I used to sleep in a foxhole with six other guys all armed to the teeth with M 4 carbine All locked and loaded ready to go safeties on And we hardly slept but when we did we had no worries of accidentally shooting AR rifles off I think that’s a little bit on the TV show Side of media Of being unsafe The same thing goes with Firearms not being legal to be carried on aircraft I can’t tell you how many literally hundreds of times I’ve been on c-130s and commercial aircraft with my m4 And never had an issue with 100 other guys with me.I think it all depends on the individual after all isn’t that what this country’s about each person has their own right to pick and choose how they choose to store secure And keep their family safe, But we do have to make sure I think as respectful gun owners to own a quality Firearms bowl One that we can afford that at least we’ll keep our weapons when we’re not using them safe from burglary theft and youngsters curiosity. Just my $0.10 worth that’s all

    • @RDSmith: Ditto here. Been contemplating a gun safe for a while now as my collection grows. Live in a small apartment so finding a place for it might be a challenge.

      • You can get a narrow safe, and yes they can be stolen, but you can put a bunch of bricks or scrape steel in the bottom to make it heavy enough that it would be impractical to steal. Get it up to around 500 lbs or more.
        Of course almost anything can be stolen, just make sure you have renters insurance.

        • One of my safes is a narrow rifle safe (not a “security cabinet”), bolted to the wall studs. Anything can be stolen, but the setup is still pretty secure.

        • Ralph, I was gonna mention that, but he said he lives in an apartment. Unless he owns it, he would probably have a hard time getting permission to bolt it to the wall, especially thru bolts.
          Of course the wall can be patched up when and if he leaves.
          If it was my set up, I would thru bolt it with at least 3/8 class 8 bolts and lock nuts.

      • in my last apartment I figured out how to secure a small safe. You know those locks that come with more full sized pistols, but people like me never use because that would mean having a gun that would take minutes to engage? I slipped one of those through the holes and fastened it to a shelf in my closet. The shelves are like wire racks, so there’s gaps between them. I went from a small to medium (I guess) sized safe and used two locks instead of one. Point is, it has a bit more security, so no one is grabbing it and running off. And the lock secures on the underside of the safe (could be inside it if you wanted), so they aren’t really easily accessible.

  10. I keep a glock 19 on a high shelf about 6 feet off the ground…one of those free standing shelves that bolts to the wall so there is nothing to climb on or anything.

    i have 2 very very young children (2 and 0), so for now there is no way they can get at it (even if my daughter could carry a chair in from another room, she would be about 2 feet shy of being able to reach the shelf) Once i think she is even close to being able to find a way to get to that shelf, i will come up with a new arrangement.

  11. bedside mounted safe, gets opened when I go to bed so I don’t have to fumble with codes in the middle of the night and closed when I go to work

  12. Rechambering a round can cause the bullet to seat further in the case. I never really unload my glock but if I do the round does not get put back into the mag. Just putting that out there

  13. I have a routine that I practice ritualistically with almost everything I do , I guess I’m a little OCD , and especially with my firearms .
    1. I practice very often with three or four of my favorite guns , both hand and long .
    2. I clean my guns that I shoot often and thoroughly and maintain with grease and oil when necessary .
    3. I sight in my scopes on my distance shooters at least once a year .
    4. I place my loaded and chambered Ruger P 95 in the preformed carry case it came in beside my bed on the nightstand .
    5. I place my wife’s loaded and chambered SR 9c in the preformed carry case it came on her nightstand .
    6. I remove my CC Kel-Tec PMR 30 and Dead Eye Luke holster and place it in my Hornady pistol safe .
    7. Both my P 95 and my wife’s SR 9c are equipped with night light laser combos and we are both very efficient with these pistols .
    8. My 20 gauge SA shotgun stays loaded with 5 + 1 double 00 buck at all times first in line in the vault .

  14. Kids are in their 20s and/or living away. Been years since anyone was in my house who wasn’t an adult. I lock up most of my guns except for those I may need to use. One is with me all day long, no matter where I am in the house. One in the garage. Another one upstairs. Not paranoid, just don’t want that “oh shit” realization that someone who broke into the house is between me and my gun.

  15. i know its not the best rule to have but the gun that is ever loaded is the one that is on me. with a 5 and 10 yr old, that have had firearms lessons, i just can’t take the chance of them being kids and picking one up, or one of their idiot friends. most of my guns have the mag in and the slide locked back so all that is needed is to release the slide.

    • I really hate to speculate but that is pushing borderline gun control philosophy Train your children Very well to respect Firearms and they won’t be stupid with them End of story. And make a real friends aren’t allowed over at the house unless mom or dad is home it’s as simple as that plus it keeps your kids from the entertaining morons that end up coming back and robbing your house trust me on that one.

  16. We keep the EDC piece on the nightstand in condition 3 because I may not be fully awake when the alarm dogs go off in the middle of the night. Also have an alarm system in the new house. Everything else is in the safe.

  17. No kids, 2 dogs that behave like kids.
    Hand guns placed in various locations about the house (5,000sf).
    Carry every day and while at home.
    Pump shotgun loaded and standing by behind the _______ door.

  18. I read someplace that criminal home entries (invasion, burglary etc)are most likely to happen between 5AM and 3PM. Reading this reminded me of that, and how relaxed my AM routine has become.

    I could be doing better.

  19. No kids here, just a couple of cats who have been well trained in the use of firearms. My sleepy-time insurance policy is always ready for instant weaponization. As a resident of MA, that’s all I’m going to say about that.

    • @Ralph: Seems like in the “Socialist States” the solution might be to have a safe near your bed that is unlocked with the gun ready to go. Suppose that depends on the actual laws for each state as some probably require the gun to be unloaded as well as locked with the ammo in a separate place (could some of these laws get any more ridiculous?). The idea would be that you could get to it for self defense quickly but as far as the authorities were concerned you unlocked it and loaded it just in time. The problem with some of these laws is that the defender could find themselves in trouble with the law for an otherwise legal self defense, which is insane.

      • My solution is to ignore stupid laws. If I had kids around, I might do something different, but I don’t so I won’t.

        My home protection device is always available. My other firearms are kept unloaded in a variety of safes. So if my home is invaded by a gang of BGs, I’m well armed and ready. However, if my home is invaded by the entire North Korean infantry, I’m screwed.

        • Maybe not! You could do what Bill Cosby did in on of his old 78 RPM’s. He said when he was a kid, he would smear jello all over the floor so the “monsters” would fall down.
          Just keep a “Pee jar” handy so you wont have to get up in the middle of the night!

      • Good idea.
        Personally, I don’t think that the “safe storage” laws are anywhere near the top of the list of threats.

        First, we are on weak ground in arguing that a law such as San Francisco’s is an “infringement” on the right to either keep or bear. Bear all you like; the safe-storage law doesn’t interfere. Keep all you like; you just have to keep in a suitable container. Unless-and-until the specifications of the container become onerous, it’s hard to make a case that this is an infringement. We have far more important fish to fry.

        Second, it’s really impossible to enforce these safe storage laws. Particularly so with your proposal. What are they going to do? A no-knock raid? By the time they reach your bedroom you should have managed to reach your safe. But of course, you heard the break-in and the first thing you did was open your safe!

  20. I have a separate home defense gun from my carry gun, so I keep it in a bedside safe. At night I lock them both in the safe. My thinking is if there were to be a home intrusion, both my wife and I would be armed.

  21. every gun in the safe is hot and there are extra mags on an over the door shoe holder along w the extra mags. but I also have an alarm and a dog. I have 30-45 seconds of easy notice (the dog goes ape-sh!t crazy when anyone gets near an exterior door).. . . .

  22. Of course it’s by my bedside and un-locked.

    Loaded gun in the safe is OK; except if there is a fire. A round in the chamber might cook-off and develop enough force going down the barrel to pierce the safe. A semi-automatic probably would NOT cycle properly inside a safe, but you can’t be sure. Whether revolver or semi, leave it un-chambered in the safe. (Revolver, leave the round behind the barrel un-chambered.)

    • I leave mine chambered in the bedside safe. In the event there were to be a fire, the muzzles are facing an upstairs exterior wall opposite the main road and not directly aimed toward any neighboring houses. If there is a fire of such intensity that I don’t have time to remove them before they cook off, we are probably dead already.

  23. My night gun is in an unlocked plastic padded range case next to the bed. I don’t believe striker fired pistols should be unholstered on a night stand. At the very least put a Remora slip holster on it while it sits on the night stand. You don’t want to accidentally pull the trigger while reaching for it in the dark.

  24. Found out that we were supposed to have a trigger lock, or gun locked of some sort, by Texas law, until the kids were sixteen. Found out when youngest was seventeen. Before then, ammo (if we had it) was locked in a ammo can, and the one rifle we had was kept in a closet, nowhere near the kids.

    Thankfully, law enforcement didn’t come by for inspection. (Posted with tongue slightly in cheek)

  25. No kids here. I keep the big GP100 by the bed and the little GP100 in another easily accessible location along with a speed loader and a couple of speed strips. If I run out of ammo the big GP makes an excellent club. Guns in the safe are loaded but not chambered (except the ones with 6 chambers).

  26. I don’t. Never have. None f my guns. Even when I had young child. I educated him. He could clear and field strip a 1911 when he was 7. He knew the 4 rules when he was 4. Making it taboo, secret, and off-limits only generates curiosity and the desire to secretly explore. When he was 3 and younger, I simply kept them out of reach. But, deliberately always visible. I was never seen quickly grabbing one and hiding it. I assured they were a normal thing for him to see like everything else in his environment. Occasionally placing unloaded guns directly in his hands from the moment his motor skills were able.

    • @Dustin

      You make a great point.

      The guns in my home were never locked up or hidden (unless you count being a drawer) when I had children around. They all, boys and girl, were shooting by the time they were 6 or 7. And they knew about them well before that. Knew what they were, how they worked and what they could do.

      We always lived in the country, and they all came with during hunting season, staying at the deer camp when they were little, and coming along when they were old enough. I never once had a single incident of any kind with one of them messing around with a gun. Part of the problem today is all the stupidity in the media about guns so that all kids hear is that they are something evil. They are tools and objects and no more evil than a chainsaw, a fast car or a large knife, all of which have been operated by humans to kill people.

      The other thing that is beyond stupid is all the laws telling people what they have to do with their own gun in their own home. California is a stupid place run by stupid people who use every excuse they can find to tell other people how they should live.

  27. I have about a dozen different guns propped against the wall next to the bed simply because I’ve nowhere else to put them all… They’re overflowing out of the closet. I guess that makes them handy, too.

  28. I have no children and none of my friends have kids. I have a 10ft wall surrounding my house, so no one is getting in without climbing a wall or being buzzed in. I have a safe and lockable steel cabinets for unload guns, mostly long rifles. I have a home defense gun in a quick open safe in the safe room, which is 3 feet from the master bed. Just in case, I have a small gun locker in the safe room with extra ammo and all my pistols. Unless I am carrying my EDC, it is usually in its holster on top of a platform in the safe room. With the wall that surrounds my house and several surprise obstacles, the risk of intrusion into my house without plenty of warning is minimal, so I do not home carry unless I have visitors.

  29. I keep a gun on the night stand, and it is covered, but the stand is not right next to the bed, and I would have to extend myself somewhat to reach the gun. Once in a great while I have a nightmare, and I don’t want the gun so close that I could grab in a hurry and pop my old lady accidentally.
    It’s the pits trying to get back to sleep on wet bloodied sheets!

  30. I’m a run away slave from the slave state of California. I now live in the free state of kentucky. I now have guns that are illegal in California. All my magazines are normal capacity. I have no safe yet. In Kentucky no one tells me what I can or can’t do in my bedroom as they do in San Francisco.
    My night stand revolver rests on an NRA mouse pad so not to scratch the wood surface.

    • Good move. I could never live in Cali. Hell, I don’t even want to visit a state that won’t let me carry. I like being able to defend myself.

  31. No kids at our house. Wife keeps her Beretta ready at all times oh her side, and I have a PPX with a light mounted and a Glock without one, a couple of handheld flashlights on the nightstand, and a Saiga 12 in a rack alongside the mattress.

    Bring it!

  32. San Francisco is 100 per cent right on this one and it should be a Federal Law if children are in the house. Its not even a bad idea if you have gun illiterate Adults in the house as well. It takes only a second to take off a trigger lock or open a quick access desk safe. The alternative is a dead or maimed child. I kept my self defense gun in this safe condition with a trigger lock and never had a problem accessing it in a hurry and this comes from 35 years of experience with children, none of whom were ever killed or maimed because I realized YES IT CAN HAPPEDN TO YOUR CHILDREN AND TO DENY THIS IS TO LIE ONLY TO YOURSELF. Remember too, other children may come over to play with your children and even if your child is trained in regards to guns kids are kids and kids do wild and stupid things so do not give me the irresponsible, ignorant excuse that in cannot happen to your kids or your kids friends who come to visit. That is stone cold reality. In this isolated case this really is “Common Sense” something the far right often has little of.

    • “The alternative is a dead or maimed child.”

      You say that like it’s a bad thing…

      (Just going by my experience with one of my sister’s kids…)

    • And I’m glad you don’t make any federal laws. My kid won’t come near my guns. She sees them, but we talk in depth about safety and when she’s older, she’ll learn how to use them. I’ll be damned if the government tries to tell me how to store my own gun, in my own home.

      • Agreed.

        jlp is one of those Liberals who wants the government to regulate his/her life for him/her since they can’t do it for themselves.

  33. When I’m home a j frame is in my pocket at all times. It goes to the dresser next to my bed at night. My wife and I have his and hers shotguns next to the bed. Loaded mags, empty chambers. We have numerous grand kids. When we’re in bed our bedroom door is locked.

  34. I have 3 young kids. I keep my EDC / night defense gun in the Sentry quick access pistol safe next to my bed while sleeping, with a round chambered, facing away from the bed in the correct quick grab position (45 degree angle away from my bed – ideal for one handed grabbing and aiming instantly, no shifting in hands required). That Sentry pistol box is pretty decently constructed with close tolerances, 12 ga steel (better than most quick access pistol safes) and the access is pretty fast, and fairly quiet.

    My AR-15 and another full sized pistol are a few steps from my bed, in a safe with electronic lock.

    Once my kids are grown and gone I will still keep my night defense pistol in a bed side safe.

    I also have a house alarm that alarms instantly in “night” mode – no door open delay.

  35. I don’t have kids, it’s just me and dogs. There is a P229 near me at all times in a Sticky Holster. It serves as my daily carry. At night in bed, it is within arms reach. It’s loaded and chambered and not in a lock box. Forget that! If my door get’s kick in at wee hours of the morning with intruders running in, it’s in my hands and I’m throwing lead, as opposed to me trying to open a safe in a panic when I’m not even awake. I’m not fooling around with some safe! My primary defense weapon is an AK-47 It’s in an electrically locked closet with tamper proof hinges. I can enter a code and open that door in about three seconds. All guns are loaded chambered with the exception of the AK and a single action .45 colt which NEVER has a live round under the hammer. It really is one of those that can fire if dropped. I never leave the AK chambered either and I don’t know why. It has a fully loaded 30 round mag inserted, just not chambered. It’s just one of those things we all do with no real sensible justifying reason. But as long as I know the status of that weapon, that’s what matters.

  36. Yes, yes I do. But then again, I don’t have children that get up in the middle of the night and wander around looking for a glass of water. If you do have such gremlins in your home, then I would think that at the very least you should have some kind of speed safe on your night-stand.

  37. When I reached a certain age my dad started leaving guns around the house all over the place. This was because he knew all his kids had reached an age where they were “educated” on the hazards of firearms. Kind of like he left the muriatic acid and gasoline cans readily accessible as well. And pesticides and poisons, etc. Education, and the responsibility to educate – that was his focus. Not baby proofing the house for children that never grow up.

    I enjoy telling freedom hating liberals that I have guns all over the house. When they get hostile and demand why, I simply tell them that I do it because freedom hating liberals don’t like it. Freedom hating liberals are intolerant of my culture, are really nosy, and want to “vote” me away – so I spite them.

  38. No kids (grown), no grandkids, no safe (not enough guns), and half of my handguns are loaded, one of which is in my pocket or within reach. The only things locked up (in a padlocked cabinet) are the ammo, my son’s handgun while he is away on a trip, and a Mosquito I haven’t shot in a number of years.

  39. Bedside holsters rule. I CC at home because I rent a room from a family. They don’t know I own guns, and they don’t need to know.

  40. Don’t you have a kid? I remember a post awhile back and I think you do. At any rate, gun owners can justify having a gun laying out in the open or accessible via a quick safe. I have kids, and yes they understand firearm safety basis, no matter, I use a quick open mounted to furniture mini vault. I can access it lightning fast. yet my kids cannot.

    I practiced at least 1 hundred times getting up in pitch black conditions to successfully access the weapon.

    You may think you have control over your kid and anyone else (play date?) when you leave a loaded firearm out Sarah. But you do not. I think you are rolling the dice when you can simply spend $100 bucks and lock it down, yet access it fast….if you practice. Just my opinion. That is it.

    • THAT’S not real flame mahogany(it’s sprayed on). Just paint it(from a very long time antique dealer) LOL

  41. My storage setup and HD solutions have varied over the years as I’ve moved. I’m single, never had any kids so that’s not a problem. Just a simple cabinet in the closet to keep the long guns in, but I’m hoping to save up for a decent fire safe sometime.

    I’ve slept for years and years with several different revolvers and pistols under my pillows, never a problem. But a nightstand is a bit more comfortable, and in the case of my current weapon, a Glock 20, allows for keeping a round chambered. Hornady 155XTP’s in this case and I also keep a full magazine of Blazer 200grain FMJ in the drawer as well, in case of black bear invasion. I had a Mossberg turkey gun in the corner of the bedroom by the door, loaded buck-slug-buck-slug buck-slug, but it’s being replaced by the M1A since it bound up several times on me at the range yesterday (bad extractor?).

    Other strategies include but aren’t limited to being on a hilltop cabin, locking the bedroom door when sleeping, keeping a locked gate across the driveway, IR sensors and CCTV, the aforementioned black bears patrolling the hillside, good neighbors down at the bottom of the hill with roving dogs, etc. All the little things that hopefully add up 😉

    I’m not fond of storage laws, as I think anyone willing to take on the responsibility of owning a firearm in the first place should be intelligent enough to take full stock of their situation and secure accordingly. This is just one of the things about life being hard enough, and harder still when you’re stupid. But, impossible to legislate regardless.


  42. Mine sits on the dresser, immediately next to the bed. I have no kids though.

    A suggestion you might try, and I find this to be a simple and very effective idea- paint a nail to match the color of your bedside dresser. Place that nail through the side of the dresser, into one of the gaps that already exist in the rails for the wheels of the drawer. Thereby placing a stop on how far the drawer wheels can travel. In this way, you’ve effectively “locked” the dresser drawer without ever having to lock it. Pull the nail, open drawer as needed.

  43. I’m continuously amazed (not in a good way) at how many of TTAG readers put in the ability of kids (especially young ones) to make good decisions with firearms (or anything) 100% of the time. They are young kids, they are not capable of making good decisions all of the time no matter what they’ve been taught. Heck, adults can’t even do that. Just because you grew up with loaded guns on dad’s dresser in your house doesn’t make it smart (or safe).

    If you have kids, if its not in your holster, it should be locked up. If you don’t want to lock it up at night and you have kids, take the mag out, empty the chamber, and put the two in separate places within arms reach of each other so you can easily grab both at the same time, load, and rack the slide if ever needed. It’s not perfect but it’s better than leaving a gun with a round chambered on your nightstand. My young kids walk into my room at night sometimes when they get scared, I wouldn’t want them getting handsy with my defense pistol while I’m sleeping (or ever).

    • @FlamencoD

      I hear what you’re saying, but you know there are variables in every situation.

      I survived with no incidents. My kids survived with no incidents. Not every situation is the same. There have been several incidents where fairly young kids, as in 12, have used a gun to defend themselves from an intruder when parents were either not home or they weren’t able to get to a gun.

      I understand your concerns about your own situation, but not everyone’s situation is the same.

  44. No little kids in the house-my big kids may never leave.(I can hope). Gun next to bed,loaded on safe(with an ax as company). Shotgun nearby loaded & chambered on safe(and I know shotgun safeties are far from foolproof)…knives,pepper gun,baseball bat,another ax and machete too in EZ reach. No dog but me and the Mrs. are light sleepers…

    • A man I can relate to.

      I guess my issue is that we take all these safety precautions, which I can understand in many cases. I knew a fellow officer in the Army whose step-son got his gun and accidentally killed one of his friends. But the officer had his gun “hidden” and had never shared anything about shooting with his step-son, so when the kid found the gun (he was a very stupid teen) he was pretty clueless about how a gun even works. Nuff said.

      The real protection for kids is to teach them . . spend time with them . . be a good father/mother. If you do that, you will be surprised at how responsible they will be.

      The alternative is that by the time you get your gun out of the safe, load it, charge it, and get to where you heard the window break or strange voices, the bad guy may have your 15 year old daughter in a choke hold with a gun to her head,

      Then what? You call the police who arrive 15 to 20 minutes later, and then dutifully take pictures and pick up shell casings from where the guy first shot you, then her, then escaped?

      Read the news people, this kind of thing happens every day, and no matter what the Libs would have you believe, you are on your own.

      • I agree. People are so scared that their kid is going to get to their gun, that they don’t teach them, yet curiosity is what can be most damaging. If you explain how important gun safety is and instill in them a respect for guns, then they less likely will want to go playing discovery if they ever get their hands on a gun. Once they’re mature enough (not any specific age), then they should be taught hands on on gun safety and usage.

  45. I keep my defensive guns out. I even sleep with one. An intruder isn’t as likely to expect that as seeing someone going for the night stand. I have no little kids in the house so my procedures are different than when there are.

  46. Any politician that has voted for gun control has committed treason and a breach of contract. He/she swore an oath to defend the Constitution. THAT is a verbal contract. By breaking that oath he/she is in breach of contract and can be sued in a tort action. Go for it, someone should get some money out of it and it will hurt him/her and maybe shut him/her up. No double standards put the DC politicians on Obamacare and SS.Thanks for your support and vote.Pass the word.


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