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Best hunting semi-auto shotgun?

Discussion in 'Hunting, Fishing & Camping' started by slider0035, Dec 28, 2002.

  1. slider0035

    slider0035

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    I am looking for the best hunting shotgun $1,300 can buy. My father has hunted all his life and deserves to have a heirloom quality shotgun for his 50th birthday. I am only familiar with Ithaca and Remington(870) pump-action shotguns and need some help. Characteristics ranked in order of importance:

    1. Reliability/dependability/simplicity
    2. Balance/feel
    3. Ease of maintenance
    4. Quality of wood
    5. Engraving/artwork
     
  2. wabash

    wabash Millennium Member

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    Browning Auto-5.

    Get a mint older one, or maybe one of the final year's engraved models.

    You might even be able to find one made the year he was born or the year he graduated high school. If necessary, a good smith can work one over so it looks new. Then put it in a nice fitted guncase.

    :)
     

  3. slider0035

    slider0035

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    That's a great idea. I'll have to run that by the rest of the family to see what they think.

    My definition of heirloom quality was a little one sided(i.e. I will have it when I am 50, and I'll get to eventually pass it down to my son). The "old man" still stomps through the CRP in Kansas almost every weekend of bird season, so this gun will have to put up with a good bit of use.

    We also have some family friends who come to hunt every year... ...thousand dollars worth of shotgun, two dollars worth of talent. Dad still out-shoots them with his 870 pump. I know he would like to carry a conversation piece on the hunting trip too though.
     
  4. matt3310

    matt3310 who me???

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    Look at Wilson Combat, they make some of the finest guns avalible in my book. Definatly worthy of an heirloom!!!
     
  5. slider0035

    slider0035

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    Is there a hunting chapter in your book? The feds don't take kindly to those who hunt birds with seven in the mag and one in the chamber. Nice guns though.
     
  6. bbauman

    bbauman Millennium Member

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    Federal "2 in the tube, 1 in the chamber" laws only apply to migratory birds, not upland game such as pheasants and quail.

    Auto-5 is classic. A good choice.
     
  7. noway

    noway

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    Not always true.

    Some of the Fish Wildlife commission place restriction on non-migratory birds such as quail with shell limitation.

    Or at least in South and Southwest Region of Florida.


    btw: When I hear of a combat shotgun and hunting, it seems strange at least. $1,300 can buy you one of the best semi-auto for hunting upland birds/waterfowl or deer and such.

    for the org poster;

    As far as engraving goes, I will state what I once heard my granddad and his buddies once said, "If engraving helps you place more shots on target, then all means get it " (joke)

    Basically save you're pennies and get the simple design shotgun unless you just have to have that pretty engraving on the receiver. The birds won't care or it won't make a difference to other hunters.

    With that said, you can get a good gas-operated or recoil operated gun for unting. I would take a look at the Beretta Xtrema, Benelli M1 field or SBE or the remington 1187. All all great semi-autos that make great field hunting guns.

    Myself I'm looking and saving my dimes for a Benelli M1 Field only because I have numerous barrels & chokes to go with it. Other than that I would have bought a Xtrema.
     
  8. Dan in Alaska

    Dan in Alaska

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    I have shot just about every brand semi-auto shotgun on the market. They all have good points and bad points, I guess, but my first choice in a hunting semi-auto is Benelli. The Benelli is the simplest to maintain and the most reliable shotgun I have owned. It's balance, feel, and pointability is second to none. I don't use 3-1/2" shells, so I prefer the M1 Super 90 models. Benelli makes all sorts of varieties, and their prices range from $750 to $1400, so I'm sure you can find one you and your father will like.

    I know a lot of target shooters prefer Beretta's because they are really soft shooters. I never much cared for them, but they certainly are pretty.
     
  9. TScottW99

    TScottW99 NRA Life Member

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    I to will give a vote for the Benelli. If I had $1,300 to spend that is where my money would go. They have a pretty good selection to suit just about everybody and every kind of hunting. Here's the link in case your intersted....

    Benelli
     
  10. SJCA35

    SJCA35

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    Having just recently purchased a semi-auto shotgun for hunting, I can say I was most impressed with the build/quality of the benelli. It also has a very good reputation for reliability and easy maint. Honestly, I was sold on it before I went to the store.

    However, for me, it just didn't feel right. Not sure what it was exactly, but I just couldn't bring it up correctly.

    I ended up getting a Beretta Urika, which I'm very happy with... while it's probably not quite as nice, it feels better in my hands and comes up easier. And I'm sure I'll get years and years of enjoyment out of it.

    I honestly don't think you can go wrong with either. However, considering it is for your father, you might want to see what he prefers.

    -Aaron
     
  11. tjpet

    tjpet

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    One vote for the Rem. 1100 - 11-87 family. Get one of the high grades out of the custom shop. Very nice. Meets all of your requirements. Will probably run more then $1300, though.
     
  12. Bruz

    Bruz

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    I second wabash's vote, get a used Browning. I have three including an Magnum 20 (auto 5). My superimposed is about 40 years old and is supposenly worth alot more now than new, shoots and looks great.
     
  13. PaP

    PaP

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    Benelli Super Black Eagle
     
  14. Sniper 7.62

    Sniper 7.62

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    Winchester Super X 2 it runs about $650.00 at Gander Mountian or you can get it's brother the Browing Golden Hunter both guns can shoot 3 1/2" shell and both are very nice and relible. IMO Sniper
     
  15. Craigster

    Craigster

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    Slider,

    Ive been hunting Phesant with Brittanys in Wa. for 25 years. Started with an auto 12 then O/U 12 and I have found a 20ga side by side works best for me. A hunting friend loves his beautiful older auto 5 12ga. Ive seen things get balled-up with autos, most due to opperator error but this one was his dads, he knows the gun, shoots it well and wouldnt trade it for anything.

    So...you didnt say what kind of hunting/shooting your dad will be doing or what he has owned in the past but based on...

    1. Reliability/dependability/simplicity
    2. Balance/feel
    3. Ease of maintenance
    4. Quality of wood
    5. Engraving/artwork [/B][/QUOTE]

    your money could buy what youve described above................. a nice traditional side by side.

    I understand experts dont recomend using the steel shot, required for water foul, in some older shot guns. There are new lead replacements out but if your dad hunts mud eaters you might check this out.

    Lucky Dad. Im 54 and up for adoption.

    Craig
     
  16. micah

    micah loves you all.

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    So far the only heirloom guns mentioned were the A5 and the custom shop Remingtons. The others may be fine guns, but it's hard to immagine any sentimental attatchment to a Beneli.

    I would recomend you look for a used Browning Superposed. I know it's not an auto, but listen up. They are not super common. Your neighbor doesn't have one. Wal Mart doesn't have one. They start at arround $1200. They have incredible hand fitting and a tough as nails action. They are meant to last generations. They are beautiful. You don't need to buy a Diana grade gun to get nice old world hand engraving. They (excuding the lame '70s models) have a round knob, like all shotguns should. Citoris are not made in Belgium, nor are they hand fit, so they will never have the status among collectors that the Superposed has gained.

    Also, side by sides are nice, but wouldn't you rather have something you could hunt AND shoot clays well with?

    In all 5 of the listed categories, the Browning Superposed rates a 10 of 10.
     
  17. Craigster

    Craigster

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    Ditto Micah re; Browning.

    Shot a Superposed Lightning 12 ga O/U many years in the field and at the traps. Great gun and after thousands of rounds it never failed or jammed and is still one of my favorites.
    .
    I went to the SBS 20 because it was a better tool for my type of hunting, lighter, a little more traditional, and my huntin buddies had for years been giving me a bad time about carrying a 12ga for roosters over pointers.

    We don’t know what Slider’s dad will be hunting or shooting but if it were me, an O/U or SBS would be my choice and Browning is hard to beat.

    Craig
     
  18. TowGuy

    TowGuy Got Bar-B-Q?

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    I hunted with a 11-87 for the past 10 years. The only thing I ever had to do to it was replace the O-ring usually every season. Last month I broke down and bought a Super Black Eagle. I've love this gun. It's fast cycling and easy to clean. I also like the way I can pull the round outta the chamber, while the other rounds stay in the bottom.

    Hope it helps!

    TG
     
  19. Bruz

    Bruz

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    I also want to plug the Browning Superimposed (over / under). Had posted earlier about the Auto 5 and also have the Citori, both newer but just don't have the feel of the superimposed. It looks near brand new even after probably 40 years except for the natural "antiqueing" in the color of the stock and the engravings. Does not have that "cheap" feeling.
     
  20. sidneyFW

    sidneyFW

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    Hi This is Sidney FW, I'm a huge fan of the Browning Auto-5, if I could only own two shotguns, they would be an Auto-5 and an Over&Under,The browing's are nice, but nobody has mentioned the Winchester-101, a beautiful Gun. You need to visit a large Gun Show, such as the ones we have here in Portland Oregon,you would be able to examine many different shotguns. Good Luck
    Sincerely Sidney FW By the way Lucky Dad!;a