18 February 2023

Top 5 Guns - Guns I Want and Don't Have a Real Need For but Might Buy Anyway

Apparently, people like Top number lists. There are numerous videos on YouTube of Top 5 Guns for whatever. Since content is content. I'll do my own. The Top 5 guns I think I want but won't ever use but might buy anyway.

Number 5 - A 20 Gauge, Semi Auto Shotgun

Back when my brother in law had a hunt club and I paid dues, the hunt lease we had on a 200-ish acre land was amazing. It had just about everything including access to a lake we could duck hunt on. It was the first and only times I ever hunted duck. I did buy an inexpensive Beretta A300 Outlander from Adventure Outdoors. I loved it. We even shared stories at my wedding's dress rehearsal dinner about how the waders I borrowed had a leak. Water getting pretty cold during winter. 

For the most part, I don't use that shotgun, or any shotguns, very much anymore. We lost the lease and the club just hasn't done anything since then. Since buying our homestead, I've taken to walking around the 19 acres as I do chores. I have several rifles in 22 LR that I like to take with me to hunt various small game. These rifles work well enough but the best part is I can put a silencer on to reduce the over all noise. I like to think it keeps the neighbors less likely to be annoyed with me. As I've been going around, I've started to think about how a small bore shotgun could be really fun for small game like squirrels and rabbits. The gun can also be loaded with slugs or buck shot for hunting larger game like deer. Finally, the weapon can be used for home defense making a 20 gauge, semi auto at good, all around choice for a homestead gun.

Around the same time I'd been thinking about it, a buddy of mine loves to hunt and bought a Franchi Affinity 3 in 20 gauge. He got the compact configuration for turkey hunting specifically. It has a 24 inch barrel and a shorter stock. It got me thinking that a shotgun like that might work great for woods walking looking for small game. It works better for the elevated critters in trees and is safer for the homes nearby. 22 bullets still pack a punch on their way down. At least enough to damage a window or car roof, probably. Shotguns are great because those pellets lose so much energy and velocity quick that it shouldn't damage rooves or windows at distance. The downside for me is that I don't have a silencer for any shotguns. Anything that can't be silenced needs to have a special reason for use on my land for noise pollution reasons.  

Turkey hunting, however, is a good enough reason to buy one. I've never hunted turkey before and I hope to see some on the homestead. I probably won't get around to buying one since I already have a great 12 gauge and can't really justify buying a slightly smaller gun. Most semi auto 20 gauges are going to be several hundred dollars and I just don't want to spend the money on something that's going to sit around. 

Number 4 - The Henry Garden Gun

This is a great example of a firearm that has a high chance of me getting. My wife has a very large garden on the homestead that we're getting started. Henry created an smoothbore version of their lever action 22 rifle that uses the CCI shotshells. I keep thinking she might like one to keep critters out of the garden like rats and snakes. We've seen both on the land so far. 

The Henry Garden Gun is really cool, in my opinion but is very much an extremely niche product. It's literally a .22 rimfire shotgun. The smallest of all commercial shotguns. It's also kind of expensive at $500 street price. I'm better off with the .410 in just about every way.

Number 3 - The Savage Arms 301 Turkey Obsession in 410 

At number 3, I've been eyeing the Savage Arms Stevens 301 .410 bore turkey shotgun. I don't own a 410 shotgun at all. Given that most single shot 410's are pretty cheap, it might be good to have one around. For the most part, the single shot 410 follows the same reasoning as the 20 gauge. I don't have a silencer that would work with a 410 shotgun. There's a much higher chance that I would buy the 410 because these guns are so cheap. I can get the 301 Turkey Obsession in 410 for under $200. In fact, when I go up to West Virginia this year, I could order the shotgun from Bridgeport Equipment and Tool for pickup after the background check. 

Number 2 - Marlin 1895 Guide Gun in 45-70

Next up is the number 2 slot. The Marlin 1895 is a really cool, lever action rifle and 45-70 is an old black powder cartridge that thumps big critters pretty good that the Army developed back in the 1800's. Ruger brought back the Marlin brand and re-released the 1895 first. The rifles seem nice but they don't do anything I can't already do with my 357 magnum Marlin 1894. 

What I like about the gun is more about the cartridge. The .45-70 was originally a black powder cartridge. If times were tough, being able to load cases with a pile of black powder or black powder substitute and cast lead bullets could keep me in the deer hunting game on the homestead. I had sort of figured I'd be able to do the same with the 357 magnum but I'm no longer convinced there's enough case capacity to make that work. 

The problem is that 45-70 is really expensive ammunition and you're pretty stuck with making your own or pay a ton of money to buy it. I'd get very little trigger time. The rifle is also pretty expensive at $1000 street price. There's a lot more that I would spend my money on. Alternatively, CVA makes a single shot rifle in 45-70 for around $300 but I could just learn to load shotshells with black powder for much cheaper. I may not be able to use my 45 caliber silencer but it's better than not being able to shoot. 

Learning to reload 12 gauge hauls is probably a smarter idea since many gun shops keep 209 primers and black powder for muzzle loaders handy. Even the rural Walmarts tend to have needed supplies. 

Number 1 - The Browning X-Bolt in 7mm Remington Magnum

Finally, at number 1, I've been day dreaming about building a bolt action rifle in a powerful hunting caliber. I was actually trying to find someone to buy one of my current rifles and go buy the X-bolt from Bass Pro but I didn't find a buyer at the time. It's probably for the best since I can actually use that rifle. 

The idea with the X-bolt was I wanted what I would call the end-all, be-all hunting rifle. I could someday take it out West and hunt elk. I could hunt bear back home in WV. I could take pigs and deer in Georgia. I could hunt moose in Alaska. I could hunt it all. 

I bailed on the idea after seeing it would cost around $3800 for me to build everything out. Big caliber, big rifle, big optic, big silencer, big bill. Also, how often will get get to go hunt in anything that's Georgia? Right now, that's never. I just can't afford to go on Big Game hunts out West. I can't even afford the ammo cost to practice with such a large gun for long range shooting. 

Bonus Round - 44 Magnum

For a bonus, I'll add anything in 44 magnum. I have been wanting a Ruger Super Blackhawk and a  Henry Big Boy Steel or Marlin 1894 lever action with a case hardened receiver to replace the Winchester 1894 trapper in 45 Colt I sold a while back to pay for the silencer the ATF still hasn't sent my tax stamp back yet. I've also toyed with the idea of a Thompson Center Contender single shot and a 10 inch barrel for hunting. None of those guns do anything different than my current stuff but the 44 Magnum round would be lots of fun. I like the idea of making my own ammo and following in the foot steps of legends like Elmer Keith. 

Any way, I hope you enjoyed this read. Have a great day.

No comments:

Post a Comment