Prepper Protection Guns/Calibers to Avoid


Prepper Protection Guns/Calibers to Avoid

John J. Woods
Magnolia Outdoor Communications


If you’re going to spend critical prepper budget dollars on self-defense and property protection defensive weapons, then choose wisely. Do yourself a favor by avoiding firearms and chamberings that are underpowered, or just outright impractical.

The best approach is to stick with a selection of mainstream guns and calibers that can get the job done when required to be pressed into action. There are a lot of fine firearms choices in the marketplace today, but some of them are just not ideally suited for the rugged task of survival prepping. Why take a chance on an inferior firearm or caliber choice?

It is the same with caliber/cartridge choices. Too many out there, so why pick one with inferior terminal ballistics to be ineffective on targets close at hand, much less further away. Lightweight handguns are great for easy carry, but do they pack enough wallop to stop a hyped up aggressor intent on bodily harm to you or family? And can you effectively shoot a featherweight handgun accurately?

Handgun pistol wise, defer picking any caliber of .32 caliber or less as a primary defensive choice. The .380 ACP with weak loads is marginal at best. If you pick a .380, then load it with top end defensive loads. Otherwise, move up the power ladder. What you want is a caliber with the capability with bullet weight and speed able to stop an advance promptly.

Rifle calibers in “short rifle” handgun pistol grip models look cool and are fun to shoot. They are not great for self-defense. They can be difficult to shoot well, and accurately since there is no buttstock to steady the gun. AR’s and AK “pistols” in 5.56 and 7.62×39 fall into this category. If you just want to spray bullets that is one thing. If you expect effective protection, reserve these guns for fun shooting cans at the city dump.

Same for the several so-called carbine type weapons that use pistol calibers. These might include the Beretta Cx4 Storm, the Marlin 9mm Carbine, and the AR carbines in 9mm. The guns themselves are fine, but in my estimation they do not fit the profile of an ideal prepper defense firearm.

Heavy battle rifles are not a good first or primary choice either. Big rifles like the M1A, H&K 91, FN-FAL or similar are great, but cumbersome for some to tote and shoot. Add these as your 2nd or 3rd tier support weapons. Initially, choose a handy long gun in a common caliber that is easy to shoot and maintain.

Your prepper funds are likely limited. So, build your prepper armory around practicality, universality, and common availability.

Avatar Author ID 67 - 753944512

Award winning outdoor writer/photographer since 1978. Over 3000 articles and columns published nationally. Field & Stream Hero of Conservation in 2007. Fields of writing includes hunting most game in American, Canada, and Europe, fishing fresh and saltwater, destination travel, product reviews, industry consulting, and conservation issues. Currently VP at largest community college in Mississippi in economic development and workforce training with 40 years of experience in Higher Education. BS-MS in wildlife sciences from MO. University, and then a PhD in Industrial Psychology. Married with two children and Molly the Schnoodle.

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