I think that all of us, at one time or the other have picked up a firearm and said, “Nah! That is not me!” In the same vein, I believe that some of us have picked up a firearm and said, Yeah buddy! This is me!” Whether we could afford it, or even thought about affording it, is commonplace. Sometimes we are actually able to accommodate the ‘me’ and we own a ‘piece of the rock’ that somehow completes us as a human being.
I have held (and hopefully will still hold) firearms that just felt ‘right’ while others (for some reason, Hi Point comes to mind) just say, “Wrong!”I’m going to say it’s a combination of fit and balance. A gun that fits you well shoots exactly where you look. It’s easy to handle and often it seems to kick less than other guns. Balance is almost as important as fit for a gun to be “you”. A gun has to ‘fit’ to shoot where you look, and a gun that fits and is balanced right for you seems to do your bidding all by itself. When you find a gun that’s you, you should buy it.
I admit that I do have some guns that, in my mind, are not ‘me.’ I do warm up to them eventually, but they are the ones that stay in the safe most of the time.A MSR is not me, but the M1A is – as is. An AK is not me, but the SKS is. Go figure! The 1911-based pistol is me, as is the Beretta 92FS and CZ75. The Glock 19 is me, but the Glock G17 and G26 are not. Wow! While I can’t change most physical aspects of a given firearm, a given firearm may have attributes that make it me; I simply feel one with the gun. As another example, I really like my Ruger single-action revolvers, but I feel that the Uberti reproductions of early revolvers are really more ‘me.’ Sometimes, it takes some changes to the firearm to make it yours. A change in grips, sights, stock, and/or trigger may make it ‘you.’ Sometimes, no changes are needed at all. I have one quirk when it comes to my 1911-based pistols – the grip panels. If I decide to carry a 1911-based pistol as my EDC, the original grip panels are exchanged with a Hogue rubber wrap-a-round finger-groove grip. While I have a couple of 1911-based pistols with the wood versions of this grip, they are for show and not go. The Hogue rubber wrap-a-round finger-groove grip fits my hand perfectly when mounted, makes the pistol more controllable in my hand(s), and promotes more confidence when I handle the pistol. The Hogue rubber wrap-a-round finger-groove grip is a ‘utility’ grip; I don’t carry a defensive firearm for show.
There are some guns that you just shoot better and it’s the nuances of the individual that make it so. Otherwise, we would all own Glocks. People are like icebergs. Most of the time you only see what is floating on the surface. The true measure of the person is what is not seen and we are pretty complex creatures when you come down to it. A person’s choice of firearms tells you a lot about the person, but should not be used as the primary indicator of the person. I once witnessed a nearly three-hundred pound man almost come to tears while holding a pink-colored Ruger LCR. He loved that gun but could not bring himself to buy it. To be honest, I don’t care what kind of gun it is when a three hundred man pulls it out to use against me. I almost wanted to buy the gun for him because there is nothing sadder than an outside dog wanting to be an inside dog and a three hundred pound man dropping tears on the floor.
Your pistol should feel comfortable in your hands. The more you work with your gun — racking the slide, establishing a firing grip, getting a good sight picture and even manipulating the trigger without adding any additional movement to the sights — the better off you will be when in a deadly force incident.Rifles, carbines, and shotguns should follow the same pattern. My MSRs are fitted with Magpul rifle-length fixed stocks, Hogue pistol grips, and two-point ‘quick adjustment’ slings because they make the MSR more in-line with my needs – not wants. The Beretta CX4 Storm has been modified for left-handed operation, as is my needs. These modifications make them not just mine but me.
So, yes, play with your guns. Work with them. Pull them close. Embrace them. Make them you.