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Long gun

From Academic Kids

A long gun is a firearm with an extended barrel, usually designed to be fired braced against the shoulder. Barrels of such weapons commonly extend to around 50 cm or longer, giving considerable accuracy and range. Most modern long guns fall into one of two categories, rifles or shotguns, distinguished by their design and type of projectile they fire. Historical examples of long guns include muskets, blunderbusses and wall guns.

Long guns are at the opposite end of the firearm size spectrum from derringers and handguns, and are longer than carbines.

Advantages of Long Guns

Almost all long-arms have front grips, shoulder stocks, higher velocity, higher-energy ammunition, heavier bullets and better accuracy, both absolute (how accurate the gun is independent of the user) and practical (how easy it is to shoot the gun accurately). The idea is that the greater accuracy from the front grip, shoulder stock, and better sights means the same ability to hit something for any one sized target, much farther away, to effectively engage smaller, more critical parts of the target (such as the long bones of the legs, the heart, head or brainstem).

Also, the front grip and shoulder stock vastly increases the amount of recoil the user can take and still hit with some or all shots, and the higher velocity ammunition apparently lets the operator deal out more energy associated with that recoil, and high energy ammunition has obvious advantages when the user has poor reflexes in semi-automatic fire in terms of follow up shots. Rifles shoot bullets that travel with their length parallel to their direction of flight and then tumbling inside a target, so they pierce the air and the outer layers of the target and turn sideways inside, releasing the bulk of the energy deep inside where it can do the most damage. Modern fighting rifles also usually have muzzle brakes for increasing sheer firepower.

Handgun muzzles with ports or suppressors are available, but typically go without, so they are loud and they flip up with each shot, making the weapon less effective in fights that test firepower or stealth, such as non muzzle contact shots and special, covert, and undercover operations. For civilians however, gun control laws may make suppressors, handguns, fully automatic weapons or any gun at all extremely illegal, depending on ones location, age, criminal record, and licensing status.

Shotguns are long guns, but shoot many tiny projectiles at once and have poor accuracy at all but close range, where the scattering, volume and destructiveness of the blast make up for the poor accuracy. Shotguns need penetrative, high velocity shotshells to unleash their sheer destructive potential at all but very close range. Shotguns still have the front grips, shoulder stocks and higher-energy aspects of long guns, however.


In historical navy usage, a long gun was the standard type of cannon mounted by a sailing vessel, called such to distinguish it from the much shorter carronades. In informal usage, the length was combined with the weight of shot, yielding terms like "long 9s".zh:步枪

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