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Moose=12 ga. Slug or .243?

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by thamilton, Nov 30, 2019.

?

Which gun?

  1. Slug gun

    18 vote(s)
    81.8%
  2. .243

    4 vote(s)
    18.2%
  1. thamilton

    thamilton Member

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    Hey all,

    I mainly hunt just whitetails and black bear, but I’ve been invited to a moose camp for this coming season. I’m interested, but still don’t plan on making moose one of my regular pursuits so I don’t wish to spend money on a dedicated moose gun.. the two options I have (which I understand aren’t ideal) that come remotely close to acceptable are a 12 gauge slug gun and a .243.

    I’m leaving towards the maverick 88 slug gun, but am looking for input.

    This will be in muskoka, so the terrain will be fairly dense woods with some marshes 50-150 yards across.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    I would buy a different rifle. Since that isn't an option you are considering, I would take the 243 and the heaviest bullets it shoots well and are designed for large game.
     
  3. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    A 12 ga. slug is potent medicine if you're close enough. I used a 7x57 on my 2 moose hunts.

    Moose seem to be easier to kill than elk so the .243 with a heavy bullet through the lungs may drop your moose in a reasonable distance from the shot. A slug definitely will.
     
  4. troy fairweather

    troy fairweather Member

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    What ever you feel better shooting. I seen some videos were guys dropped them with 30-30s and one with a 22 high power. I'd use a bonded bullet in the 243. A man can always make room for another rifle lol.
     
  5. thamilton

    thamilton Member

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    [QUOTE="troy fairweather, post: A man can always make room for another rifle lol.[/QUOTE]

    Id love to get one of those brass receiver Henry single shots in 45-70. This may just be my excuse lol.
     
  6. troy fairweather

    troy fairweather Member

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    They have some kick to them but with trapdoor loads there fine. I'd like a 357 to max a 357max. I fondeled a Browning xbolt pro today wish I had the money to make the room lol.
     
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  7. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    Common slugs are over rated. Some of the modern sabot slugs out of a rifled barrel are much better. But I'd still take a 243 with good bullets. This is where the solid copper bullets shine. I wouldn't use a 243 with standard cup and core bullets. If not solid copper then a 95-100 gr bonded bullet or Partition.
     
  8. WrongHanded
    • Contributing Member

    WrongHanded Contributing Member

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    I don't have experience hunting big game, but I've seen plenty of moose pretty close up. I think a .45-70 would be a nice addition to a collection, and it's pretty straight forward to reload for.
     
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  9. mustanger98

    mustanger98 Member

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    My main bullet in a .243 has been 100gr SP (cup and core), and best I can figure, one of those to the vitals and your moose should be down pretty soon. Those bullets... any bullets, really... can do some interesting tricks depending on what they hit. You may want to look into a 115gr hunting bullet, but twist rate is the question.

    We're talking moose here... not tanks. I don't know that they're that hard to kill, but when you hit one, you want him dead and not waiting to get up and take you out. I'd think it'd be sound thinking to shoot a moose from a distance, and to use a shotgun slug, you'd probably expect to be closer. Don't get yourself freight trained.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2019
  10. thamilton

    thamilton Member

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    Ya. I’m leaning towards the shotgun and just keeping shots under 75 yards. Seems the safer and quicker route..would sting pass one at a further distance up, but I suppose it’s the responsible thing to do unless I shell out a few bucks for a new rifle.
     
    Bfh_auto likes this.
  11. mustanger98

    mustanger98 Member

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    While you were typing, I was editing. That said, it sounds like you might be talking about hunting rather thick cover and the shotgun in the "brushgun" role may well be the ticket. I'd guess you've seen the terrain and know it better than your generalized description would convey. Also, as I said while editing, a heavier bullet may not get along with your .243's twist rate.
     
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  12. Obturation
    • Contributing Member

    Obturation Contributing Member

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    Can you get a rifled barrel for your mossberg? Sabot slugs can extend your effective range. I picked up a used one for my 500 a few years back, $60- ported with rifle sights, it works great.
     
  13. ScrapMetalSlug

    ScrapMetalSlug Member

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    What rifle is the 243? I only ask because if it is a savage you can easily switch out the barrel for 100 bucks and change nothing else, as long as it is a 308 parent case. This could keep you away from buying another rifle, and you could look at something more substantial.

    Or as others have said, the 243 should work with high quality bullets. I would chose the 243 over slug gun, just because I assume the 243 is much more accurate than the shotgun. At least, that has been my experience in accuracy with rifles and slug guns.
     
    horsey300 likes this.
  14. thamilton

    thamilton Member

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    The .243 is a Henry single shot. Its good and accurate. I’m decent with the shotgun too though. At 75 yards I usually shoot about a 5 inch group.
     
  15. ScrapMetalSlug

    ScrapMetalSlug Member

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    Do you reload or are you using store bought ammo? Looking quickly on midway at loaded ammo, I see they have federal premium 85 grain trophy copper tipped boat tail, or there were some others with the Nosler Accubond 90 grain. The 100 grain bullets were not copper or bonded. I think I would still use the 243 with some Premium ammo. Let us know how the hunt goes. Remember, people kill moose with a bow and arrow every year. With a good shot, you will be fine.
     
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  16. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    I'd try to borrow a rifle 308 or better, if I wasn't going to buy one.
     
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  17. PWC

    PWC Member

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    Has anyone here actually shot a moose with a .243?
    A 12 ga? I've had a friend that had a 12 ga foster slug go completely thru front and back wall of his cabin. I never have hunted moose but I have been face to face at 20 ft. I was in snow up to my crotch (I'm 6' 1") and the snow was only up to her knees. Biggest damn animal I've ever been close to.
     
  18. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    'Ya dont shoot a moose with a varmint gun....'
     
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  19. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    243 is actually quite popular up here in the rural villages. (Not sure why.) I watched a friend hit a cow moose in the lungs with a 12 ga slug from probably 20 yards. She flinched and laid down. She kept her head up for quite a while as she bled out.

    Folks up here do it pretty often. It's not the preferred, but it works. As for "varmint gun" I use a 243 for caribou.
     
  20. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    So...I live in Alaska, and I've done what you're talking about. 243 is my primary hunting rifle, but I generally hunt open terrain. 243 isn't a good bullet in dense cover at short ranges. The light, fast bullets tend to break apart when contacting even small diameter tree branches etc. In addition, you lose the ability to capitialize on the 243's strength, which is long flat trajectories. If you do go with a 243, make sure you use a premium bullet (I prefer Barnes TSX) and make sure you can shoot with pinpoint accuracy.

    For moose hunting in dense cover, my rifle is a 44 mag lever gun. In your case, not wanting to buy another gun (and I think that's a good move by the way), if you already have a shot gun, go with the 12 ga slugs and keep your shots under 50 yards, or within the range where you can reliably hit the lung/heart zone (which is huge on a moose by the way) and just run with that. Moose prefer dense brush habitat anyway, and tend to avoid wide open fields. Most everyone I know rarely take moose past 100 yards.

    Good luck!

    In addition to better performance in the brush, you also get a sold bear defense gun without having to carry a heavy handgun as a back up. (As I do with my 243.(
     
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  21. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    Start learning how to call in moose. Experienced and successful moose hunters can call them in to within 0-25 yards. It takes a while (sometimes a couple days). (And by the way, I suck at moose calling.)
     
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  22. mustanger98

    mustanger98 Member

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    I use .243 for deer. I hear plenty of .243 owners... one gun owners... use 'em for black bear, pronghorn, mule deer, elk. I really don't see why it wouldn't work for caribou and moose... except for that part about heavy cover.
     
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  23. hq

    hq Member

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    I'm tempted to ask whether you want to tickle the moose or kill it, but of the two the slug gun is a rather obvious choice of these two. Limited in range, though. I'd use at least .308/.30-06 or .30-caliber magnums, preferably .35/9.0mm and larger calibers. Have you considered the possibility of borrowing a rifle for the hunt?

    With precise shot placement almost any caliber will do the job but larger ones give you a lot more leeway, also in terms of range.
     
  24. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

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    I would use the slug gun and Winchester Partition Gold 385 gr @ 1800 FPS sabot slugs. Partition design so they will penetrate. 45/70 power levels.

    I assume your slug gun has a rifled barrel? If not use the .243.
     
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  25. DM~

    DM~ Member

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    All depends!!

    How far will you be shooting? Can you wait for the "perfect" side shot?? Do you have access to the BEST premium bullets for the .243??

    DM
     
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