Buying your first firearm can be confusing – the sheer volume of options can leave a first-time shooter overwhelmed and confused. We’re here to help you with some easy steps towards success:
Step 1: The Canadian Firearms Safety Course
Take a look through our section on licensing and sign up for the course! You’ll learn how to safely handle and store your firearms, and once you’ve been issued a license, you’ll be able to buy one.
Step 2: Making Your Selection
What kind of firearm you want to start with really depends on what, where, and why you are shooting. Here’s a quick run-through of what you may want to consider:
- Rifles or Shotguns: Rifles are designed for accuracy to hit a precise point. Shotguns are design to shoot a spread of shot at moving targets. Your choice depends on what you plan to hunt.
- Caliber (rifle) or Gauge (shotgun): Rifle calibers can range from as small as .22 rimfire for rabbits and grouse to extremely large rounds for dangerous game such as grizzly bears or animals found on African safaris. Shotgun gauges range from the small .410ga up to the traditional 12ga, and even the larger 10ga.
- Action: Semiautomatic, bolt, lever, pump, break or single all have advantages and disadvantages.
- Material, Finish, Size and Weight: How do you want your rifle or shotgun to look? What is the right fit for you?
- Scopes and Sights: An essential part of any successful hunt, these help you view your target. An open sight or a scope with magnification will depend on your own sight restrictions, and the distance you intend to shoot.
- Budget: This factor affects everyone’s choice. Prices vary greatly, not only on the cost but also on optics and accessories. Know what you’re willing to pay and what you’re willing to sacrifice.
- If you are looking to shoot long distance, or if you are focused on accuracy, there are many options. While rimfire target rifles are excellent for practicing the principals of marksmanship with affordable ammunition and rifle costs, if you wish to make long-range precision shooting a lifetime pursuit, this will require not only practice and training, but also high quality equipment.
- Rifles such as the AR-15 platform are extremely popular – and with great reason. They’re a lot of fun, you can customize them to suit you, and they generally fire 556/223 ammunition, which is relatively affordable and available. Picking the right AR-15 or tactical rifle is a choice we would love to help you make.
- Surplus is our specialty! Surplus rifles offer incredible value. Collectors love them, as the world supply is limited, and new shooters who appreciate the low cost of available centre fire ammunition make great surplus rifles such as the Russian SKS a major first gun favourite.
- Just like rifles, pistols vary. Caliber, action, finish and brand are all considerations. Remember that you can only own pistols as a member of a gun range, and we’ll be looking for that membership when you buy. We maintain a great variety of modern and surplus pistols with something for everyone.
Let us help you make a great choice for your first firearm – one that you will enjoy for years to come. From mild to wild, and budget to extravagant, we have the selection, expertise, and patience to help you choose your first, your favorite, and all the accessories you’ll need.