Best Tactical Rifles for Self Defense

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Many people consider owning a firearm for their person or home in order to protect themselves, their property and their families from potentially threatening situations.

In order to take on the responsibility of owning a lethal weapon for the purposes of personal defense, most gun owners extensively train with these firearms. This practice is not just to familiarize yourself with the handling of a firearm, it’s effective and safe operation, but also it helps novices identify what style of gun they’re most comfortable handling.

Many potential gun owners prefer handguns because they are the simplest to maintain, conceal securely and operate consistently and safely. Used properly, your purchase of tactical firearms may someday save your life.

Wilson Combat X-Tac

The Wilson Combat X-Tac is a .45 caliber ACP handgun modeled on the Colt M1911. It has an effective range of 1″ at 25 feet, a trigger pull of 3 1/2# and a clip capacity of 8 bullets. It’s the largest and most expensive of the three guns at 8.7″ long and an MSRP of $2,395. It’s made of lightweight carbon steel, making it somewhat lighter than a stainless steel M1911 style handgun.

One of the latest luxury tactical firearms, the Wilson Combat X-Tac also has all of the typical bells and whistles you might expect, from an ergonomic grip to a thumb and grip safeties. One of the most prominent innovations is a U-shaped rear sight that aligns with a rectangular, low-light front sight, but the issue with this sighting system is that the narrow rear sight makes it difficult to align with the front sight, taking some extra practice to get accustomed to this design quirk.

Sig Sauer P220

Also known by the Swiss Army as the “Pistole 75,” the Sig Sauer P220 is a service handgun that replaced the P210 back in 1975. Like the X-Tac, it’s .45 caliber ACP, holds 8 bullets in a magazine and is shorter than the X-Tac at 7.7 inches. It also costs about half as much, at $1,115 MSRP. Unlike the X-Tac, it has a double-action trigger, which allows the user to fire the pistol in semi-automatic fashion or in single shot mode by cocking the hammer of the gun.

Despite the small profile of the gun, ease of maintenance and consistent operation, the double action trigger might pose an issue for novice gun users, as it takes some time to get used to the heavy trigger pull (about 12-14 lbs) on the initial shot and much lighter pull (about 6 lbs) on each subsequent shot in the clip. Once properly practiced in it’s operation, the Sig Sauer P220 becomes a desirable and reliable weapon for personal defense.

FNH USA FNX-45 Tactical

Another .45 caliber weapon, the FNH is probably the best of the three featured handguns. It’s slightly bigger than the P220, at 7.9 inches, and features a similar dual action/single action trigger. Most advantageously, it holds 15 bullets in a clip and is the cheapest of all three guns, at $809 MSRP. This gun is fully ambidextrous and unlike the other two, has a military standard under slung rail for attachments such as laser sights or flashlights.

The main disadvantage of this gun is that it has a heavier trigger pull (more than 14 lbs), but like other DA/SA guns, you can cock the hammer to mitigate the heavy pull on the first pull and empty the clip with a lighter pull on subsequent shots. Overall, though, this represents the best value, ease of use and sufficient firepower to deter any threat to your personal space.

Larry Pomykalski is an NRA certified pistol instructor and a member of the American Society of Law Enforcement Trainers, as well as a former police officer, former military firearms instructor and lifelong student of the martial arts. He also felt that he had something of value to share with the firearms community, and wondered which gunzines he should approach with the above essay. The problem was that he was dealing in ideas and concepts, and virtually all of the present gunzines only want articles about products and services so that their advertising department can sell space and everyone can make money. This is the American way. This is his first published work.

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