Wednesday, March 8, 2017

What about "Wheelchair guns"?

Some folks have "BBQ guns".  They are beautiful.  They have their place and it is a well defined niche.

Some folks have "truck guns".  They are usually inexpensive and functional.  Truck guns (where they are legal) have some general requirements that define the genre...overall length being the most important.

But what about "Wheelchair guns"?  What about them?  Peter Grant donates his time to train the wheelchair bound to defend themselves with a pistol.  Given that pistols are more challenging to shoot than a long gun, is there any way to rough out the specifications for the ultimate "Wheelchair gun"?

The AR platform
From this

To this, and everything in between.

The AR platform firearm designed by Eugene Stoner has been described as "A Barbie Doll for men" because it is so amenable to "accessorizing".  What would it take to create the optimum "Wheelchair gun"?

Given that the shooter is on wheels, the 5.56 NATO is probably the round of choice.  They have been used to take Whitetail Deer when loaded with 55 grain (and heavier) softpoints so they are adequate for serious, social work.

This is a to-scale image of a Smith and Wesson "Sport" superimposed on a 50th percentile male in a wheelchair.  It comes with a 30 round magazine which protrudes below the pistol grip.
Not only must it be short (16" barrel) but it would be very convenient if it bent in the middle.

Coach guns already bend in the middle but they have exposed hammers, the recoil is fierce and you only have two shots.

There are many "side fold" buttstock designs available.  But this application really wants a top fold buttstock, similar to the one offered on some Mossberg shotguns.

The gun would have to be very "clean" since it would likely ride along, out of sight beneath a blanket.  Deploying the gun requires that it slide smoothly from beneath the blanket.  That means gadgets that protrude from the sides (also impacting comfort) and the top of the gun are absolute NO-NOs.

Just my two cents.


  1. Interesting thoughts there, I'd go with an SBR version of the AR with a 10" barrel, I believe that would fit nicely in a wheelchair with the stock collapsed all the way down.

  2. When I got hurt and had to do the wheelchair thing for a couple of months, I was able to tuck an Uzi sub-machine gun with a folding stock in it's side-pouch and a handful of 32-round mags in the other side. It worked for me.

  3. Hi Joe. Just checking in. I wonder about a semi auto .410 shotgun with a pistol grip instead of a shoulder stock. Maybe with a cut down to 16 inch barrel. With some of the loads made for the Taurus Judge and it's competitors, it would be a formidable weapon. I hate that it is now a fact of life that we have to arm ourselves now days. And even more of a fact that the strong tend to prey upon the weak, and so those confined to a wheelchair are even more in need of a means of self defense. But we live in the times that we live in, not back in the days of our youth. Be well, and have a great weekend.

  4. AR 15 pistols are very affordable right now. You can get a barrel as short as 7.5" and the buffer tube can be covered with a stabilizing brace.

    No ATF SBR paperwork involved, you can even manufacture one from an 80% lower and be perfectly legal with no serial number.

    The fireball from a 7.5 barrel is enormous and provides another component of "scare the heck out of" bad guys, in case of multiple attackers.