So, you just bought your first gun, and now you are feeling a bit lost as what to do! You want to be a responsible gun owner and take care of your important purchase. Do not worry; the gun community is a welcoming one and we are here to assist you in this new journey. Here are a few things you will need to know to be the responsible gun owner you desire to be.
The most important part of owning a firearm is gun safety. We want you, your family, and your friends to enjoy shooting the firearms you have while treating these rifles with the caution and care they deserve. Always treat every firearm as if it is loaded, even if you know it is not loaded or if you do not think it is. This is the safest way to prevent any accidents from happening. Always point the muzzle of the firearm in a safe direction (usually at the ground or towards the targets on a gun range) and never place your finger on the trigger unless you intend to fire. It is important to follow these guidelines even if you know a gun is unloaded to form good habits while handling firearms. Finally, when you are ready to shoot, be aware of your target and what lies in front of it, to the side, and behind it. Many accidents can be prevented by following these techniques and firearm safety is considered the biggest part of being a responsible gun owner. Always use hearing protection and eye protection while at both indoor and outdoor ranges.
Maintenance and Cleaning
The next thing to focus on is getting to know your new firearm. Learning how to disassemble, clean, and reassemble the gun is a very important part of maintaining your rifle. The ability to do these tasks will give you the confidence to operate the firearm. Gun owners around the world go back and forth about how often you should clean your gun and what to use to get the best results. Generally, cleaning your gun after several uses or after exposure to harsh conditions (rain, corrosion, etc.) will keep it functioning well. It is usually necessary to clean the gun when it first arrives as well since most guns ship with a heavy coating of preservative grease that should be cleaned off before firing. See our YouTube video and guide on how to clean your AR-15 for the first time.
The Gun Community and Resources
Over time you will learn what works best for your individual needs. Focusing on basic cleaning skills will help you become familiar with how your build works. All pistols, shotguns, and rifles assemble differently. However, most of these firearms come with a manual that explains how to disassemble, clean, and reassemble the gun. If the manual is not as clear as you would like, search on the internet and YouTube for more resources. Searching or posting in gun forums such as nationalgunforum.com, firearmstalk.com, and AR15.com can give you a platform for finding answers to specific questions not covered in other sources. If you are unsure of your state’s specific gun laws, check out nraila.org’s “Gun Laws by State Guide”. Going to a local gun store is another great way to learn more about your gun and meet others in the gun community at the same time! They should have many helpful tips and tricks to successfully disassemble, reassemble, and take care of your equipment. Finally, if you prefer in-person instruction, you can look into gun classes from the NRA or your local gun shop.
Training and Dry Fire
The third thing that we think is important when starting off is practicing good technique on a consistent basis. You will not become an expert if you do not practice regularly. Shooting often and even simply handling the firearm while it is unloaded will help you become more comfortable using it. For example, if you have a brand-new AR-15, you will need to practice shouldering the rifle over and over again to build muscle memory. Practice these good techniques frequently and shoot as often as you can. Over time these actions will make you more proficient at handling your rifle. Once again, the internet and YouTube are excellent resources for gun content. YouTube channels such as Active Self Protection Extra and the National Shooting Sports Foundation offer fantastic beginner guides to learning the basics of firearm safety and functionality. Keep in mind, not everything found online is always accurate or useful, but continue searching as there are many sources that will be helpful for you along your journey. For information on our products specifically, check out the BCA YouTube channel, the BCA owner’s manual, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ask Us Questions!
As with any new hobby, do not be afraid to ask questions and search for help and resources. The gun community is growing larger every day and we are all here to learn from and help one another. Everyone is working to perfect their own technique, and everyone learns at a different pace. We here at Bear Creek Arsenal are committed to helping you find success with your AR-15 which is why we produce valuable content for firearm enthusiasts of all skill levels on our YouTube channel and blog.
Remember gun safety and learning about your firearm are the most important steps to shooting successfully for years to come!