Help me feel better about my $100 NEF Pardner .410 purchase


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1KPerDay
June 25, 2008, 12:20 PM
Hi,
I've been looking at "youth" shotguns for a while as I've been wanting to get my kids out and learning. I saw an "excellent" NEF pardner (break action, single shot) advertised locally and went by to check it out. I did a couple searches on Gunbroker to get an idea of the price, and found that the NEW price was typically around $105+shipping+fees so I guessed that the $100 the guy was asking was in the ballpark if it was in excellent condition.

Well the gentleman brought out the gun into his poorly-lit carport and I checked it out... bore looked mint, finish looked good apart from a couple spots of minor wear, and the stock had a couple small dings and scratches, the type it might get from being rattled around a closet without a case.

I offered him $80 but he said he'd rather just keep it and refinish it... so I paid the $100 and took the gun.

Then I unwisely drove to Cal-Ranch to see if they had one in stock; their prices on mossberg and remington pumps were about $50-$100 too high compared to other sources so I wasn't optimistic. Lo and behold, an NEF 20 gauge (blued receiver; the .410s is color case hardened) on sale for $89.

D'oh!:rolleyes:

So I bought a couple boxes of 2 3/4" .410 ammo at $13 a box :scrutiny: and went on my merry way. Upon detailed examination of the .410 I note that there is general, very minor pitting on barrel and receiver (either that or the receiver is just not polished well after casting). The chamber looked a little rough but a good cleaning fixed that up. The bore and action look immaculate.

So why do I feel stupid for paying $100? I think a 20 ga might be too much recoil for a 9-year-old (I've shot break-action, lightweight 20s and they pop you pretty good), and I also feel that if you can learn to hit with a .410, anything else is pretty much easy. Do those arguments make sense?

I suppose I should have waited but I was excited. I have a history of doing this with gun purchases. :D

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2dswamp
June 25, 2008, 12:43 PM
I wouldn't feel too bad. Don't know what sales tax is in you're area (if any)...but the $89 gun after sales tax might be close to $100.

Guy probably wouldn't sell it for much less than $100 anyway...I mean how low do you go for a used gun that only costs $100 new anyway. Point is there's not much room for depreciation if you know what I mean.

As far as rushing in and making an exciteable decision...been there done that too.

Enjoy your purchase and the time spent with your son...I'd say that's a good investment well worth more than $100.

Hawk
June 25, 2008, 12:43 PM
You did just fine.

Someone once said "You can't pay too much; you can only buy too early".

I suspect this gent is a touch early:
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=101913125

But, sooner or later...

machinisttx
June 25, 2008, 01:19 PM
I have a rough one I paid $40 for. I've also got an old H&R youth model that was my very first firearm(I think I was 8 or 9 when dad gave it to me). I "loaned" it to dad when he had neck surgery so he could shoot the blackbirds that were eating all the birdseed they put out for doves and such.

Of all the things I will buy my kids if I ever have any, a .410 will not be on the list. That is the absolute worst choice one could make for a beginner's shotgun. After shooting mine, I was so soured on shotguns I didn't bother fooling with them seriously until just a few years ago. The outrageous price of .410 shells didn't help any, especially considering it's many limitations. It's best left as an expert's gun.

A 20 or a 16(preferable IMO) are far better choices and will not discourage a new shotgunner like the .410 will. My 16 is a very gentle kicker with standard 2.5 dram, 1 ounce loads--and it knocks birds down at 40+ yards. The .410 is limited to about 25 yards and has a super small pattern.

I still relegate the .410 to close range pest control, and have found no reason to use it for anything else.


The above is my experience, take it how you will.

EHCRain10
June 25, 2008, 01:53 PM
I paid $110 for the same gun two years ago, also used.
It was my first gun purchase so i didnt know better, $100 for a gun that can be passed down is a good deal in my book.

1KPerDay
June 25, 2008, 01:55 PM
Of all the things I will buy my kids if I ever have any, a .410 will not be on the list. That is the absolute worst choice one could make for a beginner's shotgun. After shooting mine, I was so soured on shotguns I didn't bother fooling with them seriously until just a few years ago. The outrageous price of .410 shells didn't help any, especially considering it's many limitations. It's best left as an expert's gun.

You're not helping. LOL

3pairs12
June 25, 2008, 02:05 PM
I wouldn't sell my kids for $100. They are worth that in my opinion. Not a steal but definitely not a reaming.

hboy35
June 25, 2008, 02:09 PM
I still have the .410 bolt action mossberg my parents gave me when I was a kid--I'm now 40. I shot many a bird--mostly dove with it. It weighs in a bit more than your single shot, so recoil may be less, but not by much. I recently bought my sons a used Remington 20g pump youth model and went shooting. They both fired it and didnt like it. They both fired their cousin's 410 single shot and they loved it.

A .410 is adequate for killing birds, as my experience suggest. Take your kid out and show him/her the safe way to hunt. Maybe when they are older and can take a larger gage shotgun, move them up. But, if you wait till a kid is big enough to handle a large bore shotgun, their desire for hunting may diminish, but worst of all you may have missed out on some great memory-making times afield.

Consider your $100 purchase an investment in times with your kids--never wasted.

Just my view.

Cougfan2
June 25, 2008, 02:12 PM
Too bad you didn't get the .300 win mag so you could lay down suppressing fire while Gecko45 takes rounds in his trauma plates to cover you. :neener::D

1KPerDay
June 25, 2008, 02:34 PM
Thanks hboy... I guess the proof is in the pudding. Hopefully I can get out tomorrow and see how they do. And also try out my 'new' carbine. :cool:

33-805
June 25, 2008, 02:35 PM
The difference in dollars is less than taking you and your family to a cheap, fast food lunch or the price of a fraction of a tank of gas. Relax and enjoy the gun with your kids. You will only remember the money if you want to. The times with your kids will be remembered much more fondly if you just forget about the dollars and concentrate on the fun.

I also recommend that you go and buy the 20 or the 12 as well. You can never have too many guns! If you want a great project when they are little older, have them help you refinish "their" first gun. Might get them into a whole new hobby for life.

Seriously, your kids are lucky to have a Dad like you who wants to get them out and shooting. Have a great time!! Take some pictures so you can recall things later and share them with your grandkids. Your kids will be out on their own before you know it. Memories and the things they learn from you are so much more important than any amount of money.

ArmedBear
June 25, 2008, 02:40 PM
It'd cost you more money to drive somewhere else to buy a similar gun, than you could have possibly saved.:D

A few times I've said to my wife as we go into a store looking for something in particular like sporting goods: if you find something that works for you, BUY IT! Don't worry about the price. At $4.69 a gallon, it will cost more to shop around.

(Yes, gas is $4.69 here. Filling up my Jeep costs -- well, I actually don't know how much a fill costs because the pump shuts off at $75 to limit credit card fraud.)

chas08
June 25, 2008, 02:44 PM
Of all the things I will buy my kids if I ever have any, a .410 will not be on the list. That is the absolute worst choice one could make for a beginner's shotgun

I couldn't disagree more. While I do agree that a 410 is more of an experts weapon. The important thing to consider here is his age and size (as you have) and getting him into shooting something he can have fun with. As for your feeling good about the purchase, a $100 for a gift that will last a lifetime and will no doubt produce countless smiles, all for less than the price of a full tank of gas, thats priceless. :)

ArmedBear
June 25, 2008, 02:49 PM
Besides, I'd hate to hand a pristine gun to a kid. They might as well drop/scratch/ding a gun when it doesn't matter much. And we all DO learn things the hard way, like it or not.:)

35Rem
June 25, 2008, 05:13 PM
Amen, ArmedBear. Nothing wrong with a little character.

I tell you what. A 20 ga NEF/H&R will KICK!! Better for Jr. to have to try a little harder to hit (start with stationary targets) something than to be too scared to shoot it at all because it hurts.
The 410 is a fine starter, the 28 gauge may be a little better, but the 410 is probably easier to find.

Besides, everyone should have a 410 for a "garden" or "back door" gun.

JShirley
June 25, 2008, 06:11 PM
1K,

Go back and buy the $89 20 gauge, too.

Start your child on the .410. When good habits and safe handling are ingrained, you can think about moving up to the 20...but I grew up with a 20.

I was deathly afraid of shooting our Remington 870 and Mossberg 500 12 gauges- assuming that they would kick even harder because they were larger. No, that little 20 kicked about the hardest of anything I've fired. Handy in the field, though. I miss her.

John

Onmilo
June 25, 2008, 06:13 PM
I am no expert but I am getting close to fifty and if I am not hunting ducks or pheasants I find myself toting my ,410 single shot more and more.
3" #6s will do the job on upland game out to 35 meters, don't let anybody kid you about the .410 being a popgun.

KevininPa
June 25, 2008, 06:32 PM
Trigger and action will be smoother 'cause it already had a bunch of rounds through it. Had a few H&R's and NEF's and the triggers and actions always took more than a few rounds for a nice break in.

Cougfan2
June 25, 2008, 06:52 PM
Guy I used to work with shot skeet with a Win 42. He called it his "Idiot Stick".

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
June 25, 2008, 06:57 PM
You lost $11, less the tax you would have paid on the new one. So you're out $3-5 bucks? The used will work just as well as the new, and you won't worry about scratching it. It ain't that much money; just enjoy it! :)

Hawk, you'd think for $20,000 for the pair of Pythons, that the price would cover shipping. But no, that's another measley $100. That seller must be using that FedEx sister company using the gold-plated trucks.

Wheeler44
June 25, 2008, 07:15 PM
My older brother received an Iver Johnson .410 about 40 years ago.
He has had many guns since then. It is one of two guns I know that he will have the rest of his life.
Ya can't put a price on a mans first gun.

Bud Tugly
June 25, 2008, 11:22 PM
I've shot hundreds of grouse and rabbits with a .410 over my lifetime. In my experience it's totally deadly on these species out to 25 yards or so. It works great for hunting thick cover since the lightness allows it to be shouldered very quickly.

The soft recoil and low blast noise will make it unlikely that a new shooter will develop a flinch, which is a huge factor in accurate shooting. That allows full concentration on shot placement, which is FAR more important than the volume of lead in the air.

A 20 or 12 is cheaper to shoot and far more versatile, especially for hunting more open terrain. Your son will figure that out in a few years and probably then be ready to move on to bigger guns.

A .410 teaches discipline, patience, and shot placement without the intimidation factor of the larger gauges. IMO it's an excellent tool for learners.

rrflyer
June 25, 2008, 11:26 PM
My first shotgun when I was about 9 years old was a NEF .410 that was found in the woods.

The stock electrical taped together and it was rusted as hell but I can describe in intimate detail the first dove I brought down with that thing.

Hunted with it for a season and moved up to the 20 guage the next.

In the end your kids dont care if you lost 10 bucks on the deal. They will remember the day Dad brought them home there very first gun

Good choice and have fun shootin with the kiddo.

Congrats.

pyle
June 25, 2008, 11:52 PM
No, I wouldn't feel bad at all. What's $11? My time is worth much more..

I bought an NEF Pardner Pump 12 gauge about 3 years ago and I love it. I bought it specifically for Duck hunting. I didn't want to get the pretty shotguns all muddy and messed up so I went with the low cost NEF and it's one of my favorite (and useful) guns now. If you want something to feel bad about - feel bad about not having more than one of them........:neener:

Sun195
June 26, 2008, 12:48 AM
I started on a H&R .410 and thought it was fine. I could hit birds (clay) with it and wasn't intimidated by the recoil. Of course, I wanted a "real" shotgun and soon moved up to a 12 gauge, but I think I was well served by that .410 as a starter.

Jst1mr
June 26, 2008, 12:53 AM
I started with a worn out H&R 16 at about 10 - 11 yrs old. Never minded the kick, but always had to look out - the gun invariably opened and ejected on its own after a shot...quick reloads for grouse coveys!!!!!

1KPerDay
June 26, 2008, 01:20 PM
Thanks for the encouraging works, folks. Planning on taking the kids out saturday to try out "their" new M1 Carbine and the .410 (plus my new mags for my M11 subgun :D )

Girodin
June 26, 2008, 10:36 PM
So why do I feel stupid for paying $100? I think a 20 ga might be too much recoil for a 9-year-old


I'll make you feel much better. I have that gun in 20 guage and it kicks bloody hard. It is the hardest kicking shotgun I have ever owned. When I was 12 and weighed a whopping 75 lbs it was a bit much. That 20 is a good little gun for $89 (I think it was like $70 back when I got mine) but it is so little and light that recoil is stiff and probably more than you want for a nine year old. It is hard to shoot well when you cringe at the idea of pulling the trigger.

I still have that little 20 it was my first gun. I have nicer guns now but I still really like it and get it out and shoot it.

You could pick up the 20 too and put it in the safe for him to use in a few years but I think you did well with the little .410.

Girodin
June 26, 2008, 10:38 PM
Oh yeah, when I opened that NEF up on my 12th birthday it was the coolest shotgun in the whole world as far as I was concerned.

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