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Thread: What to look for in el cheapo 12 ga.

  1. #1
    Member moose-head's Avatar
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    Default What to look for in el cheapo 12 ga.

    Long story short. I am looking to buy a cheap 12 ga. for deer hunting (does for meat) in Iowa for the next couple years then to have after I (hopefuly) return to Alaska. I do not do a lot of bird hunting, but would like to chase Ptarmigen a couple times a year then use it primarily as a back up gun. I assume I will want a rifled barrel because of the Iowa time? Cost is of the utmost importance I will likely be shopping at Wall Mart or something like that. What do I need to look for in a gun?

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by moose-head View Post
    Long story short. I am looking to buy a cheap 12 ga. for deer hunting (does for meat) in Iowa for the next couple years then to have after I (hopefuly) return to Alaska. I do not do a lot of bird hunting, but would like to chase Ptarmigen a couple times a year then use it primarily as a back up gun. I assume I will want a rifled barrel because of the Iowa time? Cost is of the utmost importance I will likely be shopping at Wall Mart or something like that. What do I need to look for in a gun?
    Hard to beat New England Firearms (NEF) for cheap, reliable single-shot shotguns. Here is a good description of options I found on the web.

  3. #3

    Default Consider

    A Remington 870 EXPRESS will fill your needs. They have a deerslayer style barrel that is available with rifled barrell and rifle sights. They also have the availability of interchangable barrells, so you could have an upland barrel as well. This firearm has been in steady production for over 50 years, kind of the flagship of Remington shotguns.
    The Mossberg 500 would also fill your bill, it has an alloy receiver instead of the steel receiver of the Remington. Mossberg also has interchangeable barrells. Mossberg also markets aftermarket barrells for the Remington 870.

    Both shoot 3" magnum ammo as well as 2 3/4" ammo.
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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    I'd look for used. A well worn 870 can be had cheap- $150 or maybe even less. Rifled barrels can be had aftermarket (Hastings, Mossberg, or even Remington). Its hard to kill an 870 but they can sure get looking rough in a hurry.

    I think the last 870 I bought was the combo- 26" smooth bore with a 20" rifled barrel. I paid about $300 used but in very good condition.

  5. #5
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    Nothing wrong with a Mossberg 500 and it can be had for cheaper than the 870. They have a combo deal with a slug barrel and an upload game barrel.

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    I have had great luck with Harrington and Richardson's handi rifles and ultra hunters. You can buy a fully rifled barrel and then through their extra barrel program you can get a smooth bore for bird hunting for less than 100$.

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    IMHO try looking at the price tags for cheap

    Seriously tho,I couldnt help myself..I'd also go with the Remington 870 Express. And this gun can take a beating.

  8. #8

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    If you want to save the most money the single shots are the way to go. Otherwise stick to either the Remington or Mossberg in pumps. The last time I looked you could get a Mossberg 500 in 12 gauge for around $200.00 at Walmart. The Maverick is made by Mossberg but not that much cheaper nor as tough.

  9. #9
    Member schmidty_dog's Avatar
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    I'd find a used mossberg or remington. Both are good guns. You really don't need a slug barrel, I have never used one. Just don't use slugs that are specifically designed for a rifled barrel. I grew up in Iowa, and neither me nor anyone I hunted with ever had a rifled slug barrel, we just used our bird guns to shoot our slugs. No problems.

    schmidty

  10. #10

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    OK Moose-head ya got me! Your going to seminary and I very much approve of that. You need an elcheapo shotgun and I have access to bunches of them. I happen to reside in Iowa and in the eastern half of the state. You want a shotgun you got one. They don't come any cheaper than free!

    First thing in the morning I'll go by the shop and have a gander. There are at least 50 different used 12 gauges sitting on the rack that will be gunshow bound this saturday (Marshalltown Ia). I know there are some Mossberg 500's and some 870's as well. However the one old gun that really caught my eye was a Savage model 67 pump 12 gauge. My older brother still has one that he got new back in 1974 when he was in highschool. His old gun has killed over a thousand pheasants and many a fox. That gun has been put through every torcher test that one could possibly encounter afield and it just keeps on working. His gun though full choked and wearing only a bead will shoot the elcheapo Wal-mart Winchester 1 oz slugs very well (Schmidty Dog is right). The one sitting in the shop looks almost brand new even though its probably 30 years old. My guess is that it spent most of its life oiled up in a closet. It also has a tang safety up on top that you operate with your thumb rather than a tiny push button tucked down on the underside.

    If you are still in Dubuque then half way from where you're at to where I'm at would be about an hours drive, give or take. I can throw the old Savage and a couple of others in the trunk (just in case you don't fancy the old Savage) and we'll get together.

    You have been sent a private message with my phone number so give me a call and we can discuss the legal qualifications and work out the details.

  11. #11
    Member GrassLakeRon's Avatar
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    Default NEF Tracker 2

    Hi,

    I bought an NEF Tracker II last year. 140 dollars at Cabelas. Put on a BSA red dot sight and with cheap slugs I can group well all day. For the cost of a barrel, you can have a gun made for slug hunting. Just my 2 cents...

    Ron

  12. #12

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    Sorry Murphy...go ahead and puke if you must!

    El-cheapo to this individual means inexpensive and thats exactly what my reference to the term means as well. Kinda sort in a I don't have it so I can't spend it situation.Poor folk like to hunt too!

    The closest mom and pop gun shop in this area is 50 miles east. Its in the lower portion of a $500,000 dollar executive home. The last time I was here everything in the store was marked up at least 30% over his cost. Sorry Murphy but I ain't interested in helping fund the new swimming pool that was under construction in his back yard! Incidently the gunshop is the only thing these folk do. I support them in the area of the second amendment but they posess the same greed factor that is pushing folk to Walmart.

    The mom and pop gun shops as we knew them growing up no longer exsist in this part of the country. They are all doing the internet thing and could give a rats ass less about me as an individual. The only thing that matters to most of them is the dollar sign and this my friend makes me sick!

  13. #13

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    I'll add another one for the NEF / H&R. One thing I have found with their switch barrel thing is that putting a shotgun barrel on a receiver with a rifle stock didn't work for me. The shotgun barrel with shotgun stocks is very pointable. I don't know how this applies to the slug barrels, I've never owned one.

    I bought it at Wal-Mart and the American lady working there was very pleasant and sold me an American product that I still own and has never given me any problems.

    Rob

  14. #14
    Member dwhunter's Avatar
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    elmerkeithclone and Murphy,

    I want to applaude you both for your offers of a free shotgun for Moose-head. I am sure you will both be paid back tenfold.

    BTW- I wish I had a small shop around here in my part of Texas, a place to buy guns, gear etc as well as hangout to BS. I do not care for Gander Mtn so I usually browse Gunbroker.com

    Doug

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    After reviewing my comments I do find them to be out of line and will remove them. Good luck moose-head, with your shotgun search and you'll be in good company with EKC if you link up with him. A good man and he'll get you a good shotgun.

    No hard feeling EKC, I'm just a little touchy about some things.
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  16. #16
    Member moose-head's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    After reviewing my comments I do find them to be out of line and will remove them. Good luck moose-head, with your shotgun search and you'll be in good company with EKC if you link up with him. A good man and he'll get you a good shotgun.
    Thank you for your consideration, I posted because I wanted all input as to what to look for in an 'inexpensive firearm.' I asked for all input and value ALL input including thoughts on where to buy. I am currently taking out large student loans in an effort to get a job that will make about half as much as I made at the job I quit before coming to school. Money is tight now and will be in the forseeable future. You were kind enough to start a new thread with your concerns about the vendor I mentioned and I will be following that thread and posting there. I am planning on driving 100 miles past Wall Mart To central Iowa Saturday to get a really nice sounding savage. PM ing each other in progress. Regrettably I will be burning Sam's Club gas to get there.
    Last edited by moose-head; 10-21-2008 at 17:31. Reason: added thought

  17. #17

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    Don't sweat it Murphy! We are on the same page!

    We used to have a couple of those gunshops here in town. I loved them and they got all of my business. However they are gone and the only place in this town that sells ammo is Walmart. The only two stores within 30 miles that even sell hunting licenses are both Walmarts.

    I cut my eye teeth hanging out at Roses Gun Shop, listenening to the old guys telling campfire hunting stories. In those days I could shut my eyes and tell you every gun on the rack and in what order they were sitting. I would lean on the counter for hours memorizing the latest issue of Shotgun News. The only place in town that now carries Shotgun News is ...uh huh... Walmart.

    Murphy the good ole days are gone. Will it come full circle again? I doubt it at least not in the days that I have left. Believe me I feel your pain!

  18. #18
    Member frankd4's Avatar
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    Default Great investment

    Bout 30 years ago I got a Mossberg as a temp shotgun and 30years later itís still under the back seat of my rig, I think I got my monies worth.
    Ted Kennedyís car has killed more people than my gun!

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    ALSO HAVE AMOSSBERG 500 IN 12 guage and it has performed flawlessly for over 20years. great gun.. p.s. still have an old BUMPER STICKER. DON'T LET TED DO FOR YOU- WHAT HE DID FOR MARY JOE. CHEERS HEALEY

  20. #20

    Thumbs up One more for NEF, H&R

    I picked up the NEF Pardner Protector Pump at Di-ck's Sporting Goods for $169 with the idea that it would be dedicated home defense, however I added a Slug barrel from Bud's gun shop for $113 and it is going to Ohio for shotgun season this year. I am very pleased for the price.

    BTW, Remington owns Marlin, H&R/NEF and the protector pump is an exact copy of the 870.

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