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Basic Rifled Shotgun Questions for Deer

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by ezypikns, Mar 6, 2006.

  1. ezypikns

    ezypikns Participating Member

    Jul 16, 2004
    Dallas, Texas
    What's the effective range of a shotgun with a rifled barrel shooting slugs? Is it also OK to shoot buckshot out of one of these barrels? I deer hunt in eastern Oklahoma where a shot over 50 yds. is a little on the long side. Most are at 30 yds. or less. I've been hunting with a scoped rifle, but sometimes it's hard to pick the animal up. I've decided on either a lever action rifle with open sights or a rifled barrel shotgun. A scope won't be used.
  2. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Senior Elder

    Sep 8, 2005
    I've shot a magazine full of slugs from an 870 Express with a rifled barrel, and I was surprised at its practical accuracy.

    I've shot a lot of rounds through an 870 Express 28" shotgun, so I know how an 870 fits my shoulder and how to get it in position quickly. As a result, I was able to get on target fast and I was able to hit a hanging clay pigeon, offhand, without fail at around 50 yards. This is entirely adequate for deer hunting at that range of course.

    What's neat about a shotgun is that it is designed to be pointed quickly. The balance and geometry work really well for slug shooting at ranges where iron sights work fine without extra effort. I liked it. This is only true if the shotgun fits!

    Lever guns are lighter and kick less, though, and if they fit, they are also good quick handling rifles.

    Those two types of guns are both good choices. Do you have a shotgun already? Are you talking about buying a barrel or a whole gun?
  3. 'Card

    'Card Participating Member

    Feb 20, 2006
    Raleigh, NC
    I have an old Remington Model 81 autoloader in .300 Savage that I break out occasionally when I'm going to be hunting in the kind of terrain you describe. It's every bit as ugly as a mangy dog, but it's short, well-balanced, points quick, shoots straight, hits hard, and is very reliable. Remington made about a billion of 'em back in the day, so it's also easy to find parts for on the rare occasions when I've needed something.

    I'm just an autoloader fan, though. You mentioned you were looking at lever actions or a shotgun with slugs, right? Given those two options, I'd go with the Marlin .30-30, probably. A slug gun is awesome within 30 yards or so, but a lever-action .30-30 is awesome at 30 yards and still pretty awesome at 100 yards. In other words, you're not giving anything up with a .30-30, and you're getting more range options.
  4. Delivery McGee

    Delivery McGee New Member

    Feb 5, 2006
    Buckshot out of a rifled barrel is okay in the sense that it won't hurt the gun, but it's certainly not good for the shot pattern -- the rifling spins the shot, so when it leaves the barrel and starts to spread, it makes a really wide donut shape really quick.
  5. redneck2

    redneck2 Mentor

    Dec 25, 2002
    Northern Indiana
    My Rem 870 will hold baseball sized groups pretty easily at 125 years, which is what I use for sight in. This is with 3" Rem copper solids. Others may shoot as well, but I've never seen the need to change. I have a 1.5x6 scope on it.

    I've taken probably 15 deep with it, and never had one get away to this point anyway

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