What about a bullpup hunting rifle?


December 19, 2008, 11:30 AM
Now, hear me out. A nice short carbine is usually easier to carry, better handling and what not, yet for a hunting rifle it's good to have a long barrel so you can get ideal velocities. Something with a bullpup design might just meet these requirements, but will likely be hated since it would not be traditional looking whatsoever (not universally hated, but by a large sector of people who like traditional looking guns). Would you be able to have a bolt-action bull pup design or would semi-auto probably be the way to go?

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December 19, 2008, 11:34 AM
if you can figure a good way to work the bolt while the rifle is still at your shoulder, without the bolt hitting you in the face. would also be weird reaching towards your cheek to cycle a new round

December 19, 2008, 12:07 PM
Well, some people have done mauser conversions that look really wierd to bullpup. It is very possible, would be funky dcycling the bolt though. I don't think that a 7mm Mag bullpup would be all that wasy anyhow. But for "short" action (.308) cartridges, semi auto would work.

Art Eatman
December 19, 2008, 12:24 PM
Back around 60 years ago, guys did the bullpup thing for varmint rifles. Easy to manipulate when in the cab of a car or truck.

Bullpups have always seemed to me to be too light at the muzzle for good offhand shooting at any distance. Wrong in what I'm used to for balance; I prefer a rifle to be slightly heavy toward the muzzle.

I've hunted in some seriously thick cover, and I never really felt constrained by the length of my rifle. A little extra thought while sneaky-snaking, but no big deal...

December 19, 2008, 12:29 PM
There was a Bull-pup fad among amateur rifle builders back in the 1960's.

Along with the problem of operating the bolt, there are also nearly insurmountable trigger linkage issues.

And do you really want the LOUD end of a belted Magnum any closer to your ears then it already is on a normally stocked rifle?

Folks also found Bull-Pups were harder to hold steady and shoot off-hand with all the weight in the back end of the rifle.

Then there were the accidents!

The same folks who were building Bull-pup bolt actions were also wildcatters & handloaders.

Several found out the hard way you shouldn't have your head laying on top of a Mauser action when a case or primer lets go!

That led to some folks putting steel plate "blast shield" cheek-pieces on the stock, and further added weight in the wrong place for steady holding.

In all, the fad came and went, with nothing worthwhile coming out of the whole mess.


December 19, 2008, 12:58 PM
I seem to remember that a german or austrian firm manufactured a bullpup hunting rifle, i think it was called the shorty hunter or something like that. it was a neat looking piece of kit.

December 19, 2008, 01:01 PM
Wasn't that one a pump action in various african big game cartridges?

December 19, 2008, 01:06 PM
I think that the pistol grip was pulled back to cycle the action and it could be obtained in 22-250 and 243. it was a long time ago since i have seen one!

December 19, 2008, 01:09 PM
Ok there was a german one I saw for sale last year that was .375H&H. It was a pump action bullpup very odd looking.

December 19, 2008, 01:13 PM
KelTec seems to have solved the bad trigger problem with bullpups ... and they are supposed to have a long barreled version of their RFB on the market next year (of course the Carbine length one is supposed to be on shelves now). http://www.kel-tec-cnc.com/rfb.htm


Its a .308 (which is good for most any game animal in North America) and I imagine you could get 2 or 3 round FAL mags somewhere.

Then there's the Walther WA2000 http://www.snipercentral.com/wa2000.htm
.300 WinMag or .308 ... and cost about as much as a NICE new car.

December 19, 2008, 01:17 PM
Well, so far, the Kel-Tec is Vaporware.
It was anounced over two years ago at the SHOT Show, and still nothing.

It remains to be seen if the production rifle will be nearly as good as the hand-built prototypes.


December 19, 2008, 01:23 PM
That may be ... we'll find out in February (my fear is they're going to dick around and not get them on the market before another AWB then it'll be a moot point whether they're as good as the prototypes).

Occasionally you'll stumble across something like this http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=118699151

Semi autos seem to work better than bolt action, but you still have problems with triggers ... and for some reason most bullpups end up with sights or optics mounted way above the bore line.

If you want a hunting gun that is real easy to carry, consider handgun hunting. Then you can get a single shot rifle caliber pistol or a big bore revolver ... either of which will probably shoot better than a bullpup converted bolt gun like that Mauser on GB I linked.

December 19, 2008, 01:31 PM
if you google shorty rifle you can see what it is, i would post a link but my computer skills leave a lot to be desired:o:o:o

December 19, 2008, 01:35 PM
Wasn't the Kel-Tec due out this month?


The delay is due to a re-tooling effort aimed at adjusting production in order to precede any future negative legislative actions that are likely imminent due to the incoming administration.

I get the feeling they're refering to an AWB....either:
A) They're using it as an excuse to delay
B) They're fooling themselves thinking they'll be able to get around one with a semi auto bullpup...

December 19, 2008, 01:47 PM
if you google shorty rifle you can see what it is, i would post a link but my computer skills leave a lot to be desired

let me help you out here.

December 19, 2008, 01:53 PM
Thats the very one! thanks for the help ;)

December 19, 2008, 02:13 PM
Also the one I was talking about.

December 19, 2008, 03:53 PM
Expansion on the delay on the RFB from the Kel-Tec forum

It basically means we are going over the design and modifiying it some with an eye towards rapid production. so that when it gets in production, there are very few bottlenecks.

So instead of releaseing some now, and slowly makeing more, we are taking more time now to optimize production, so that we can make them faster, and therefore make more of them before anything detrimental comes out legislativelly.

I imagine they will also try to ensure the rifle will be immediately available/fixable with a muzzle brake and bullet button to get it legal for restrictive states such as CA and NJ, whose laws could be a template for a potential AWB II.

Better to be prepared and ready.........

December 19, 2008, 04:44 PM


December 19, 2008, 04:57 PM
It seems like the Desert Tactical SRS like gunmaker posted above would be a great compact bullpup hunting rifle. Not to mention you can put on the .308 upper for deer then switch to the .338 for elk or other big game. The reviews I've seen all got almost scary levels of accuracy, and very good triggers for a bullpup.
Downside is cost though!

December 19, 2008, 05:31 PM
As I see it, the problem isn't weight distribution. You could always use a longer or heavier barrel to make it steadier and that would have other benefits as well. I imagine that electronics could be used to make a trigger as good as anything else on the market too.

The main problem in my mind is that it creates such weird ergonomics. The sights have to be way up above the barrel. The pistol grip is lower than usual and usually too far forward. To me they feel like I'm shouldering a 2x6 rather than a rifle.

December 19, 2008, 06:11 PM


heres a couple

they also had a barrett 50 cal, maybe for bear hunting or cape buffalo???

i dont think i would want .50bmg that much closer to my face

December 19, 2008, 07:13 PM
I like the idea of a semi-auto in a bull pup and an M1A would fit the bill...

December 19, 2008, 09:15 PM
I like the description of the rifle in the first link, "was made exclusively for poaching deer from a moving vehicle."

December 19, 2008, 10:24 PM
i like the Remington sound like a neat idea but would prefer a shotgun for thick cover due to easier offhand shots

December 19, 2008, 11:01 PM
What is the thing in the bottom of the 2nd picture in gunmaker2872's post? It's the first thing I thought of upon reading the OP, but couldn't remember anything about it.

December 20, 2008, 12:39 AM
biggest advantage i see in bullpups is getting in and out of apcs'.

December 20, 2008, 09:56 AM
plus ideal for Fish (fighting in somebody elses House):D
all the advantages of an m4 style carbine with the ability to hit out to 600m
not really sure why you'd need a short compact rifle for hunting but crack on

December 21, 2008, 09:52 PM
I think one is is the lack off pointability. I if you are right eye dominate as most of us are, your left hand, when extended, points at what you are looking at. The bullpup would feel awkward and have a short sight radius. I think it died for a reason.

September 15, 2010, 10:09 PM
I'd like to see a lightweight, straight-pull, 308, suppressed, bullpup hunting rifle. I shot an antelope with my Steyr Scout 308 on Saturday and it was damn loud. I usually wear hearing protection but wasn't expecting to see a goat. The Desert Tactical is very nice, but expensive and heavy. With sufficient resources, one could probably utilize some existing parts like AR10 bolt, barrel and, maybe, bolt carrier. I'm a fan of the Scout Rifle, so short length, bipod and Ching Sling would be the cat's meow while the bullpup configuration would allow a 20" barrel and suppressor to still have a short OAL.

September 16, 2010, 09:15 AM
The previously posted photo of an M4 and bullpup side by side are valuable.

1) Why is a long barrel necessary when alternate calibers like 6.8SPC are optimized for a 16"? The premise that a long barrel makes for the best performance from a round is NOT a guarantee. Sometimes the optimum combination is a bigger caliber with shorter barrel. It will deliver more power and possibly offer better ballistics. Caliber science has advanced quite a bit and things aren't limited to the state of the 1950's art.

2) Bullpups have significant ergonomic issues. They are not inherently easier to use, reload, operate, or shoot. There's a reason you don't see MSAR's adopted worldwide, or even successful shooters in three gun competition. AK's outnumber them.

When bullpups were introduced to the military market, optics were the solution for the reduced sight radius, and they were neither common or reliable. Now, there are much better choices, but the bullpup still suffers from a reduced sight radius for BUIS, to the point designers contrive special handguards or grips to keep from shooting the support hand inadvertently.

It's a idea that has a lot less practicality to the user once they get them in their hands.

"not really sure why you'd need a short compact rifle for hunting but crack on" Most lever gun hunters will surely do so. My 16" Saddle Ring Carbine in .30-30 is a good representation of America's #1 deer rifle since 1894. A short compact rifle is the continuing trend in firearms for centuries.

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