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First shots

For Thanksgiving, my son got to shoot his first gun:

We were shooting at pumpkins and gourds left over from the fall season. Now, he’s five. You can see he’s having some trouble shouldering the suppressed 10/22. Over CTD, they’re discussing guns for the young shooter. And this reminded me that my dad, who was there when my son was shooting, said maybe I should get him a Mare’s Leg in 22LR. He could shoulder that. Something to consider.

14 Responses to “First shots”

  1. Chris Says:

    15-22 with a 6 position stock. My daughter can get down behind it easily and it’s not all the way at the shortest position. She’s 8 and loves shooting the thing. I definitely recommend one. With a red dot, it is very easy for them to understand what to do and gives them a high chance of success. I figure at this stage it’s very important for her to have fun and success.

  2. MSJ Says:

    You can get a 6 position stock for the 10/22 as well.

  3. Shootin' Buddy Says:

    Ah, something I can actually give sage advice on as an uncle of 5!

    Length of pull and weight are your most critical considerations.

    Guns to consider:

    1. Savage Cub
    2. CZ 452 Scout
    3. Marlin 15Y or YN
    4. Ruger 10/22 (I do not suggest self-loaders as first guns).
    5. Winchester 67A*
    6. Winchester 1903 Boy’s Rifle*

    *The older Winchesters are built right but the sights are less than optimal. Kids love the sights on the Marlin 15Y.

    Of the score of guns I have purchased for the boys so far, I recommend the CZ Scout (manual action, can remove bolt for safety, easy to put slings on them, nice crisp sights). I like’d it so much that I bought one for myself.

    Also, do not go to handguns too early. I made this mistake with a Smith M317 to the oldest at 9.

  4. MattW Says:

    I love my little Henry lever action .22 and I think they make a youth model with a shorter length of pull. No children have shot it yet but it will likely be the first firearm my daughter learns to shoot with.

  5. Veeshir Says:

    He could shoulder that.

    Wouldn’t that make it an SBR and your son a felon?

  6. NukemJim Says:

    You might want to consider a aftermarket stock for the 10-22. The Christie “Super Stock” has worked extremely well for my nieces and nephews. Adjustable stock, removable rails, removable front grip…

    Around $150 and worth every penny, I’ve tried Aftermarket stocks from some other companies and the “Super Stock” is absolutely the best. IMHO

    PS They are good people to do business with.

  7. unknown.rodent Says:

    +1 to the suggestion of a Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22 with a 6 position stock. My daughter is just a little bit of a thing (still at age 11) this was the first gun she was really comfortable with. The M&P 15-22 is a lot of fun even for kids of all ages and the gun with grow with your child.

  8. Joe Says:

    My daughter is 5, and she loves hers. Fits perfectly.

  9. RS Says:

    Not to second guess another shooter, but my preferences for guns for the below 12 set are bolt and lever action.

    There’s simply nothing safer / more forgiving of error and it builds the kind of coordination you will need for hunting later.

  10. Beaumont Says:

    Another good choice would be the Marlin Papoose, with the stock shortened if necessary. The lack of a fore-end puts the balance point farther back, which can compensate for short arms.

  11. Sid Says:

    We had the same problem when my 5-year-old son tried to shoot my daughter’s 10-22.

    We bought a Cricket .22LR and he loves it.

  12. A Horse Thief Says:

    15-22 works well for my son. The added benefit is that a bipod can easily be attached to further ease the shooting process.

  13. Jim Says:

    Put him in the benchrest position if you can, rather than sitting on the ground (even if his feet dangle off the ground a bit, that’s OK, the bench will help give him some stability). Sandbag the rifle, at least the forearm. Should make it a bit easier to shoulder. I agree with the commenters who suggest a bolt-action rifle to start with. I used an old Marlin Glenfield 25 for my kids, still use it in Scouts for teaching kids.

  14. Jim Says:

    By the way, can’t tell from the pic but I’m assuming that even with a suppressed .22 you both have eye and ear protection on. Sorry, it’s the RSO in me.