Weapons for Slaying Zombies When TSHTF

We all know that when the SHTF the zombies are going to come out in full force and being a prepper the idea is to be ready for anything right?  (I’m posting this because I just watched Dawn of the Dead again.  :-)

So I’m watching the movie on my laptop because my wife has no interest in seeing zombie skulls split by high velocity projectiles and meanwhile I’m thinking, “Man, if I was in that situation what would I want to use for a zombie slayer?”  They had everything in there from high powered rifles to golf clubs.


Now, I’d want something a little more substantial than a baseball bat, but also a little less impressive than a Barrett .50 BMG.  Here’s a nice list of zombie slayers Ranger Man kindly put together for us.  On it he has listed as the number one gun the AR-15 and I gotta tell you that the AR is one mighty fine weapon.  When I was in the Corps I could consistently hit a man-sized target at 500 yards on the KD range.  A man-sized target at that distance looks like an ant on a coffee cup when you’re looking through peep sites, but with an excellent weapon like the M-16 and the training provided by the USMC it was easy to hit.

But here’s the thing.  A lot of the fighting they were doing was up close and personal and if you get a bunch of people on you at close range a rifle can be a detriment.  So I got thinking about hand-guns.  I have a .44 Smith and Wesson hand cannon that will definitely do the job, but using a six shooter in a crowd of zombies would be suicide and I don’t care how fast you are with sw29a speed loader.  Except for Dirty Harry of course.

So that led me down the path of semi-automatic pistols for the medium range to in-close work.  A 9mm is a good handgun and is used by a lot of police, but I wonder if it would have the knockdown power needed for something of this nature.  After all, when you shoot a zombie in the head you want that sucker to go down and stay down.

The .45 Colt is also a mighty weapon, but it just doesn’t have the round carrying capacity of the smaller caliber pistols.  That got me thinking about the .40 Smith and Wesson.  This is a nice little handgun.  It has the knockdown power needed and it holds up to 15 rounds and with enough magazines you could hold off a pile of zombies long enough to make your getaway… you hope.  sw40

But wait, what about defense in depth?  This would be my preferred means of defense in a perfect world of killing zombies.  First, I’d take an M-16 with an M203 40 mm grenade launcher. m16

I had to carry one of these heavy bastards my first year in the Corps and I actually got pretty good with it.  If you start laying some 40 mike mike HE downrange you’re gonna mess some stuff up and when they get a little closer there’s the APERS round.  (That’s anti personnel for you civilian types.)  Think of it as a 40 mm shotgun shell.  Can you give me a hell yeah?  (Of course you only get one shot with it before having to reload, but man, what a shot it is!)  Why the M-16?  For the simple reason that it’s what I know best.

For in close shooting I’d take a .40 Smith & Wesson or a Glock, and for the up close and personal work I’d take a short sword like the Roman or Spartan soldiers used.  (I was a huge fan of Sparta even before the movie 300.)  Hell, I don’t know if I’d be able to use it effectively, but I’d feel cool as hell carrying it around!


What would be your weapon(s) of choice for killing zombies?

Jarhead Survivor

27 comments… add one
  • j.r. guerra in s. tx. December 6, 2010, 8:22 am

    Saw the finale to AMC’s THE WALKING DEAD last night, them zombies walk sloooow. Why the major ‘Zombie Fest’ going on anyway, Romero’s original NIGHT OF THE WALKING DEAD film is nearly 40 years old and still a cult classic.

  • Chinasyndrome December 6, 2010, 9:05 am

    My Mini-14 in my hands,mossberg 12 ga slung on my back Ruger 9mm shooting cor-bons on my hip .38 in back pocket my Rtak II on belt!I missed season finale of walking dead and forgot to record it.Damn it!


  • 3rdMan December 6, 2010, 12:55 pm

    Ok since all Zombie shot must be head shots to be effective, my choice would be the AR15 carbine with an Eotec for those quick head shots. I would also have a G17 with a 33rd magazine for backup. This would allow for the dispatching of at least 63 Zombies before I needed to reload. Forget shotgun not enough rounds.

    • MrBigW March 3, 2011, 5:19 pm

      The new kel-tec has better rounds…


      A pump shotgun with TWO seven round feed tubes. You can carry non-lethal in one side in case you’re not sure their a zombie, and slugs in the other in case they are.

      If you shoot them with a rubber bullet and they don’t start cursing you, hit the selector switch-chamber a live round- pull trigger. repeat….


    • MrSuperior March 12, 2011, 6:46 pm

      I noticed you said that you’d be able to dispatch at least 63 zombies before reloading. How could it ever mount up to more than 63 kills without reloading, when that’s the amount of bullets you can fit in the magazines? Are you counting on multikills? And 63 kills is a bit optimistic. That means that every single shot you fire has to be a clean headshot.

  • Mountain Rifleman December 6, 2010, 1:50 pm

    Well, Marine, the Marines I knew wouldn’t let those zombies get to within 500 yards. That’s why they carried the M1 Garand, the finest rifle ever made. Kill zombies all the way out to Ft. Mudge.
    All you zombies please spare me the it’s too heavy BS.
    When it absolutely, positively has to get there on time, roll to your M1 Garand.
    Semper Fi, Marine. You young bucks can take care of ’em in close.

    Mountain rifleman

    • 3rdMan December 6, 2010, 8:57 pm

      The only M1 that I want to see roll out when the Zombie hordes are coming is an Abrams. Hahaha

  • Cacatua December 6, 2010, 2:56 pm

    2-1/2″ barrel model 19 S&W 357 magnum with Pachmayer grips.

  • shane44870 December 6, 2010, 6:08 pm

    I would carry my 10/22 enough power to get the job done, and the ammo is light enough to carry lots of roungs. my side arm is a glock 21 13 rds of 45acp

  • No ME Preppy December 6, 2010, 7:16 pm

    While the .22 might be sufficient for Zombie squirrels, Id go with something a bit larger for the bipedal types. A good option would be an auto carbine type (think Ruger camp carbine or Thompson, or the 10/44, or something similar). A pump or auto shotgun is also a good idea. I’d also get a sidearm in the same caliber as the carbine.

    • shane44870 December 7, 2010, 11:59 am

      I have other weapons, my 10/22 is go to for zombies lol . It good enough to punch thru a skull ,maybe not a big hole but good enough to do the job, as has been proved by isreal they issue some units with silenced 10/22 for close in work.

  • Hokie Magnum December 6, 2010, 9:12 pm

    The point to remember here folks, all joking aside – is that zombies go down when their CNS is violently interrupted. To that end, the 9mm would be a perfect high capacity, low recoil supplement to the main zombie buster – the almighty AR15.

    The best zombie medicine going is the high capacity 223 carbine. It’s an accurate, low recoil, high test lead delivery system. Topped with a red dot holographic sight, weapon light, and a good sling – you should be fine against any zombie horde.

    Unless they’re infected with the Rage Virus. Then…success will be found only in numbers – meaning you need lots of friends who also have AR15’s.

    I also watched The Walking Dead last night as I strung xmas lights on the tree. Nothing warms the spirit more than holiday decorations and watching southern rednecks splitting zombie skulls. Pour the egg nogg!

    • 3rdMan December 6, 2010, 10:49 pm

      Yum! Egg nogg

  • Jarhead Survivor December 7, 2010, 8:16 am

    I liked all your comments. Thanks for reading!

  • Mountain Rifleman December 7, 2010, 4:39 pm

    You have the M1 Abrams and air superiority. If the zombies got the air covered with smart bombs you’ll want the M1 bayonet for digging and hope the Abrams is way the hell and gone.

    The Abrams does have a nice big rifle, but it’s a little heavy.

    Mountain rifleman

  • Hokie Magnum December 7, 2010, 10:47 pm

    Sorry Mountain Rifleman…while I appreciate what you bring to the table, and believe me – I do….I must add a legitimate correction in the realm of zombie demographics. Unfortunately for the undead – they do not retain the ability to utilize opposable thumbs. Such mechanical dexterity is limited to the four fingers and palm. If it can’t be squeezed in a drunken sloth / algae sucker fish sort of way – it ain’t happening.

    More specifically…say you’re all freaked out trying to out-run a slow moving zombie horde. You shut the door. Done.

    I mean it. Done. Go take a long hot bath, pour some bourbon, and check to see what week Dancing With The Stars has progressed to. They’ll never get in. Ever. So long as you can tune out the occasional head bump into the door jam you’re good to go. Wake up, pour coffee, eat a 5-star egg breakfast, then open the door with a loaded 12-gauge and have a SHTF blast!

    Of course….this all assumes the horde doesn’t have the Rage Virus. If that was the case – you’d be typing on Rangerman’s SHTFblog by headbutting the keyboard with your cheekbones trying to spell “BBBRRRAAAIIINS!!!!”

  • Mountain Rifleman December 7, 2010, 11:28 pm

    And all the while I thought they had a recurrent branch of the median nerve, but if you say they don’t then it must be so cause you seem to have “BBBRRRAAAIIINS!!!!”, keyboard or no.

    Can I borrow your AR 15, that should take care of the poodles and many here think it’ll take care of zombies except for Abrams fans and the big bore set

    Mountain rifleman.

    Mountain rifleman

    • 3rdMan December 8, 2010, 7:53 am


      Whats wrong with the skull/ brain crushing tracks of an Abrams. Saves ammo. Now fuel that another issue at 3g/mile. But what fun you would have until you run out of fuel.

  • Hokie Magnum December 8, 2010, 8:46 pm

    I cannot deny the implied awesomeness of an Abram’s beatdown. There’s just no sport in it. That said, if Mountain Rifleman had access to an Abram’s amid a zombie apocalypse – I’d be his biggest fan, serve him drinks, and DJ the background music.

    As for my credibility – I have a vast amount of operating experience amid various hordes of zombies. I belong to a union.

  • shadowxdm9 December 13, 2010, 1:09 pm

    AR15…xmd9mm….1911….870 exp 7 shot….KBAR nuff said

  • ChefBear58 December 25, 2010, 9:20 pm

    I am I the only one who thinks that the “zombie apocalypse” can be solved with the proper application of explosives?! Give me some claymores, a few AP mines (maybe a couple “bouncing Betty’s”, and I’ll take that Ar/M16/M4 with an M203 attachment please! Let’s see some zombies “shrug off” a few 40mm HE rounds! Simply set up a perimeter with the mines and claymores, take them out at a distance with the M203 and the 5.56 projectiles, if they get to close then just hit the “clacker” and let those ball bearing FLY! A zombie will trip an AP mine just like any unsuspecting enemy soldier.

    If we are talking vehicles for the “redneck” zombie slayer… Take a page from the A-Team, and modify the family Pickup/SUV. Those guys used to make some pretty SICK assault vehicles out of a freakin’ Radio Flier wagon, a MIG/TIG welder, some old fencing and a few pipes!

    On a serious note, well as serious as possible when talking “zombies”, I agree with Mountain Rifleman… I would feel a lot more comfortable behind an M1 if there is some distance between me and the target. However, the AR15/M16/M4 are put to good use by our military in the field as we speak, there is something to be said for that. With the .22, if you place the shot JUST RIGHT, it would probably drop a zombie, depending on what ammo you are using and the distance to your target. As someone pointed out, interrupting the CNS is the key and so shot placement is the key to survival. Since some of yall are enjoying the new show “The Walking Dead”, notice the one guy (he played in the movie “The Boondock Saints”) is taking out zombies with a cross bow?! SILENT BUT DEADLY!

  • logan January 6, 2011, 8:54 am

    as far as a KBAR goes… i would take a longer close quarter weapon any day! more like a machete or hatchet. Also i prefer a higher caliber rifle in order to hunt large game along with zombie defense, something to the tune of the Model 91. The basic 870 or moss 500 is a good weapon but it has its range limitations. And for a side dish i would go with my Colt 1911 ACP with a McCormick 10 round clips

  • matt February 28, 2011, 9:48 pm

    For long range id go with a an r700 or mosin nagant, then id grab for my ar, i also think that an mp5 would be a useful weapon, its 9mm so it’ll get the job done and its light durable and some are even internally suppresed. For close range id take my 870 express and kimber 1911
    semper fi

  • Richard H March 6, 2011, 11:19 pm

    If you want a sword for combat STAY AWAY from any movie replica. You can never be sure of the quality. Just because it cost $300 doesn’t mean it won’t snap at the hilt first swing. I would suggest a high-carbon machete or a battle-ready sword. If it’s able to kill and come back for more it will be called Battle-Ready in the description. The best thing you can do though? Make one. Yes make yourself an actual sword. Because then you will KNOW the quality, and how much it can take.

  • bad day March 12, 2011, 1:30 pm

    I’m an old jarhead,too. I wish I still had my m1 Garand and could afford the rounds to put in it.Unfortunately,times got tough and I had to sell it.I also had a Bushmaster XM4-A2,but she was very picky with ammo and magazines.Now I have an AK-47 variant.Now, it’s no M-16 when it comes to accuracy,but with tech-SIGHTS on it I can hit a man sized target at 300 yrds.For longer distances,I can use my Mosin.My buddy’s got a 74 and it’s accurate, low recoil, and inexpensive to feed.Thinking about buying one for the wife.Reliability you can count on.I prefer a good wheel gun,but in a zombie scenerio,the G-17 would be the way to go.For the zombie killer on a budget,I’d go with a mosin/nagant for distance,an AK variant for mid to close,a G-17 for close, and a Cold Steel machete for in your face,take as many down before you become one of the shambling horde,moments.

  • Steve April 29, 2011, 2:04 pm

    Ha. Like Mountain Rifleman said, use an M1 Garand. Just make sure a couple or more z’s are lined up so you can get multiple counts per shot!

  • Jarhead 03 July 6, 2011, 5:34 am

    My AR-15 (16″ trijicon sight, 20″ iron sight and 24″ scope barrels each for specific purpose and ranges), Glock 21(13 round mags) and my nephew on my combat modified Remington 870 combat shotgun, Ruger 10/22 with 25 and 50 round mags with a scope on it and Ruger Mark II.


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