The concept of the Get Home Bag is simple. It is a bag you fill with the goods needed to make it through a disastrous event. The GHB isn’t a big bag, and it’s not the same as a Bug Out Bag. It gets you home to greater supplies. One of the key features of a GHB is the weapon. We should all be carrying concealed, but a GHB is there so you can carry something a little more powerful, easier to handle, and that offers more range.
Today we’re going to look at few compact and powerful options for the GHB. These go beyond your normal concealed carry guns and into the offensive role when necessary.
A Handgun Turned PDW
This is one of my personal favorites. It involves your normal concealed carry handgun and the ability to convert it into a more effective handgun. The handgun can be turned into a PDW through the addition of one of several types of accessories. The goal with this is to avoid the NFA classification of a short-barreled rifle. It should remain a pistol from a legal standpoint. With the advent of the SB Tactical brace, this is an actual possibility.
There are three general systems in use that allow you to turn a handgun into a PDW. Each will convert it into a much more effective weapon for self-defense. These devices will increase stability and effective range. Some can also give you the option to mount optics, lights, and lasers.
The first and most popular is likely the RONI-STAB. This device is essentially a shell for your gun. It takes your handgun and turns it into an SMG sized pistol. The device is equipped with a stabilizing brace that allows for more stable firing positions. The full-length top rail is perfect for adding a red dot scope and the side rails allow the addition of flashlights along with other accessories.
The second is the KPOS Pathfinder. The Pathfinder is incredibly similar to the Stab. However, it’s more expensive and features all metal construction. The bare folding tube on the end allows for the installation of all forms of stabilizing braces. Plus, the KPOS also allows for the mounting of optics and accessories.
The third device is the most affordable and is made by ENDO Tactical. This device only functions with Glocks but does allow you to install a buffer tube and stabilizing brace. It’s the fastest to install and the smallest. It doesn’t offer the ability to mount additional accessories though.
These systems allow for a longer effective range due to the stability and three points of contact they offer. The first two models also increase rapid fire control due to the additional room you have to grip with your support hand.
Best of all, they aren’t guns by themselves. If you leave it in your car there is no risk of having a firearm stolen and used by a criminal.
The drawback though is that they only work with certain pistols. Plus it increases your overall cost because you have to purchase the handgun plus the kit.
The Kel-Tec SUB-2000
The Kel-Tec Sub-2000 is likely one of the most interesting rifles to ever exist. This is a pistol caliber carbine that is offered in a variety of magazine styles. You can choose a model that takes Glock, SIG, S&W, or Beretta magazines. The gun comes in either 9mm or .40 S&W.
The reason it’s a valuable GHB weapon is the fact that it folds in half. Its length folded is only 16.25” inches. The newest generation of this weapon is outfitted with rails and M-LOK slots for easy accessory attachment.
The gun is complete with adjustable sights and an easy disassembly procedure. It’s lightweight and easy to shoot up to a hundred yards. In my experience, it’s a simple gun that is dependable and even fun.
The common magazine platforms will allow some users to mix and match magazines with their handgun or rifle, as well as share ammo. The gun is outfitted with some additional sling points for easy carry. The newest generation comes standard with a threaded barrel for muzzle devices such as suppressors.
Once folded and stored this little gun is incredibly handy and a potent fighting tool. It’s compact nature makes it easy to conceal and stash away for bad times. This is one of my favorite rifles for prepping. It fits in something as small as a sling bag. Mine stays in my Vertx Commuter for those just in case situations.
The only con is that it can be difficult to mount optics on it.
A big trend to hit the firearms market and to revitalize the shotgun industry is the popularity of pistol grip only or PGOs. These are 12-gauge pump action firearms with 14-inch barrels. By law these aren’t considered shotguns because they lack a stock. If they aren’t shotguns, they can’t be short-barreled shotguns.
They offer many of the same advantages as shotguns but in a smaller package. The lack of a stock does make them challenging to control. They use shotshells which limits their range. I’d suggest plenty of range time and reduced recoil shotshells if you plan to use these.
These are small but extremely powerful guns. They excel in close quarters combat and are even handy inside a vehicle. These are decisive in combat and perfect for urban environments. In a pinch, they become somewhat of a master key for taking doors off their hinges.
Their ability to accept shot shells allows them to be used defensively or even as hunting weapons for small to medium sized game. Again, it does take a lot of practice and skill to master these guns.
With the right slug and the right technique, a shooter can reach 35 to 50 yards on large targets. The Mossberg 590 Shockwave has a slight advantage as it’s tapped for a scope mount and the addition of a red dot makes it a little easier to be precise.
Either way one of these guns on a single point sling is a quick and easy weapon for use in combat. However, keep in mind that it requires a lot of practice to handle effectively and has a limited range.
These guns are only pistols in legal terms. In reality, they are mini rifles that lack a stock. As for rifles, they offer more power and a greater range than any of the above options. When equipped with a brace they are effective and easy to aim. The AK/AR discussion is long and an article unto itself.
It should be noted that the AK’s 7.62 x 39 mm round performs better from a shorter barrel than the AR 15’s traditional 5.56. ARs are more easier to equip with optics and other accessories. AR pistols can also come in a wide variety of cartridges like the 300 Blackout, which is a great short barreled rifle round.
Either option is a substantial and excellent weapon for short to medium range shooting. They’re both rounds capable of taking medium sized game as well as being effective defensive weapons.
These guns are typically larger and heavier than pistol carbines or PDWs, but they offer a substantial advantage over both in power and range. The downside to them being, all that power from a short barrel does result in a lot of muzzle flash and massive increases in noise and concussion. There is also the increased muzzle rise which requires training to learn to control. Using these weapons indoors is quite the experience. There are some muzzle devices that can help mitigate these effects, but there’s only so much they can do.
The better penetrative power of these weapons allows them to pierce through soft armor and stands a much better chance of defeating hard armor. There has been a slight rise in the use of body armor by criminals and this may be a concern to you.
Getting home should be a simple event but we don’t prepare for simple events. We prepare for the worst and do so with gusto. Having a firearm more potent and useful in your GHB is an important step to take. The second step is learning to use it. There is no need to have it if you can’t shoot it. Remember your life may be on the line, take it seriously. The best gun in the world is worth nothing without the skill to use it.
In addition to the gun, you’ll need extra magazines, ammunition, and a way to carry it all. Keep that in mind as well. Pistol calibers offer smaller and lighter magazines. Shotshells and rifles magazines are substantially bulkier. It’s a delicate balance in the size and weight categories so it’s a decision you’ll have to make for yourself. Know your area and know your needs.