Preppers take note: A full-size handgun is a mandatory piece of gear for the inevitable end of the world. A full-size handgun is easier to control, aim and shoot more accurately. Getting a secure, two-handed grip in wet and dry environments means the weapon can be used with greater precision. This means more hits and less wasted ammunition.

A full-size pistol also carries a maximum payload of ammunition. Magazine capacity is important, and higher-capacity magazines allow you to shoot more between reloads. Easy-to- acquire ammunition should be your next criteria in a survival pistol. The .22 LR, 9mm, .40 S&W and .45 ACP are excellent choices because they are the most popular with law enforcement officers and civilians. If members of your family have an aversion to recoil, stick with a light-recoiling .22 LR or a 9mm. If you plan on packing a second gun, make it a larger caliber like a .40 S&W or a .45 ACP. These calibers have more recoil and are better suited for experienced shooters.

Gear is only valuable if you know how to use it. Train often and train with a purpose. All mechanical equipment can fail, so understand how to clear a jam. Maintenance is important, too. You don’t need to be able to take down a pistol blindfolded, but the ability to field strip and keep a weapon clean and operating can mean the difference between life and death.

A weapon may get wet with saltwater, caked in mud or frozen in ice. You will need to be able to maintain your pistol whatever the conditions. Here are some of the handguns to consider for survival scenarios.

For more information contact:

Beretta; 800-962-2658

Bushmaster Firearms; 800-998-7928

Colt Firearms; 800-962-2658

CZ-USA; 800-955-4486

Glock; 770-432-1202

European American Armory (EAA Corps); 321-639-4842

Kahr Arms; 508-795-3919

Kel-Tec; 321-631-0068


Sig Sauer; 603- 610-300

Smith & Wesson; 800-331-0852

Springfield Armory; 800-680-6866

DoubleStar; 859-745-1757

STI International; 512-819-0656

Taurus; 800-327-3776

Wilson Combat; 800-955-4856

This article was originally published in SURVIVOR’S EDGE ™ Winter 2015 magazine. Print and Digital Subscriptions available here.

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