Like many hunters and shooters, we might have a gun safe. When you’re not using your gun, safes like these are made for specifically storing guns. They keep heirlooms or other valuables out of sight instead of keeping them in plain view for the taking if some idiot to break into your house.

Growing up in Texas my father would keep his guns in a closet by the bed. My mother wasn’t a fan of this, because of us kids. I was curious about why he’d do this, and his response (paraphrased) was that if someone were to break into our house in the middle of the night, at least then he would be able to access them quickly. It ended up badly though because a year or two after we moved someone broke into our house and made off with all his guns.

Fast forward a little

My father in law when he died not too long ago left my mother in law with a safe full of guns that were unused and neglected. In the safe were some old shotguns and some newer ones as well, a few Marlin rifles not to mention rust.

Also in the safe were used cartridges that I am sure he meant to reload at some point down the road. I’m sure he meant to get into reloading but never got around to it.

I guess I remember my dad with his guns in the closet and in my mind’s eye I was trying to figure out why someone would buy guns and just let them sit in a safe.

What rust means on anything

Rust on anything is an indication that you aren’t willing to put the work in and take care of something.

Rusty guns in a safe is a sign of laziness and apathy. It’s a sad sight to see rusty guns in a safe, because not only does it reflect poorly on the person who put them there or owned them, but it also says I’m not willing to take care of something of value.

Rust, especially on firearms is easily preventable with proper maintenance. The thing about rust though is it is semi-permanent unless you completely disassemble the gun down to all metal parts.

Best intentions aren’t always the best decisions

Someone has to say this and I guess I will. We all make bad decisions from time to time. We need to be aware of our decision making process when we purchase guns. When you buy something make sure you are addressing the following issues:

Do I need a new gun?

The buying decision process starts when someone realizes they need something. They might notice that there is a problem they want to solve or a gap in their life they want to fill.

At this point, people might not know what will fix their problem. They might not know what to do. Or they may have an idea about something that will help but are not sure which brand or service will provide the best option.

An example: “Joe Blow” wants to spend time with his kids hunting. He wants some rifles that are good tools to start hunting with.

Do your research

Doing your homework is the best way to avoid an unnecessary purchase.

If you are buying your first rifle or shotgun, I recommend checking gun forums and asking questions. Forums are great because people can help you. You may not even know what to ask though, and that is okay. Just let them know something like:

I am looking for a rifle (or shotgun) and I was wondering if you could give me some advice on what would be good or helpful?

Explore your options

Once you find the information, you can think about it. Then, you will know what is best for the problem.

At this point you need to decide what is the best solution for you. Look for any potential advantages or disadvantages to each product.

An example: In this phase, Joe Blow might be making a comparison list of multiple rifles. The list may include prices, features, and reviews.

Make a decision

At this point of the buying decision process, you are ready to pull the trigger and make a gun purchase. You have made your decision about which product, service, brand, or solution is best for needs, and you are ready to buy.

Check the Frequently Bought with section or Customers Also Bought below the item your buying. Many times retailers or online websites offer discounts that will blow you away.

Gun purchase after-life

It is now time to think about whether you made the right decision.

There is nothing worse than buyers remorse. You will never get that time in your life back or even worse your money not being returned.

There is a greater chance if you didn’t do your homework that gun purchase might end up being a safe queen gun.

My conclusion

Ok, so I’m finally done griping about Rusty guns in a safe, can I have some chocolate now?

No, you have more work to do.

If you made it this far, then next time you buy a gun, just do some research first and remember this purchase might be a long term investment so take care of it.

What are your thoughts?


James Cambern is the owner of AIT Arms in Kansas City, MO. He doesn’t have much to say, but when something needs to be said he doesn’t hold back. He has a passion for fast cars and drinking Deer Blood on occasion. You might find him at the range or building his next rifle (he loves customizing AR-15s). He has two beautiful daughters and a loving wife, Cassy.