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H&R 20 ga or 44

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H&R 20 ga or 44

Old 02-20-2012, 11:34 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 1
Default H&R 20 ga or 44

What would be the better gun for accuracy and power for whitetail? An h&r 20 gauge slug or h&r 44 mag handi rifle? Shots would be within 100 yds in woods.
scooby81 is offline  
Old 02-20-2012, 02:07 PM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Warren County NJ USA
Posts: 3,899

20ga, get the H&R Ultra Deluxe
BOWHUNTERCOP is offline  
Old 02-20-2012, 05:58 PM
Typical Buck
Join Date: May 2010
Location: South East Pa.
Posts: 526

i will probably get arguments, but I would rather have a smooth bore 20 gauge than a .44 for deer under 100 yards.
Gunplummer is offline  
Old 02-20-2012, 06:27 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Indiana
Posts: 498

I have both guns. My 20ga USH is alot more accurate at 100 yards. Shoot 3" Accutips in the 20ga.
Nimrodder is offline  
Old 02-21-2012, 08:50 AM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 647

Well to me its really a question of what you want more Accuracy or Power. If Power is the big concern then the 20 ga by far is the clear winner. I've seen a shot placed in the gut of a deer that took it down and the deer didn't get up. But the bad thing about shotgun slugs is the recoil can be a force to battled. So accuracy can suffer. Personally I like the 44 mag. With the right bullet placement its good out to 120-130yds. Its also just seemed to be much more consistant on the shooting. With in a 100 yds though both are good choices. The handi rifles are good. I grew up hunting with a 20 ga hr slugger with a scope and I'd say if you can handle it thats a great gun. I'd say its really a matter of what you want and what you can handle because neither is a bad choice in my opinion for whitetails with in that range. If you want to go a little more than that range I'd go for the 44 mag.

One other thing the 44 mag has going for it that its compatible with the 44 special which is legal in many states for deer if you have a youngster that wants to go with you that may not be able to handle the recoil.
IndyHunter83 is offline  
Old 02-21-2012, 07:00 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Kent Island, MD
Posts: 121

Scooby, First of both will do the job for deer out to 100 yards. I am going to assume you are looking to buy and don’t already have either of these. If you have a reasonable chance of hunting a shotgun only area then I would lean toward the 20 gauge. If not I would get the 44 no question. I do most of my hunting in a shotgun only area and own 20 and 12 gauge rifled barreled shotguns, so I know how effective they can be. They are accurate enough to take deer out to 100 yards, but I still would prefer a center fire rifle. I have no experience with the handi rifle, but would be surprised if it could not equal (probably not exceed) the accuracy of the typical slug gun. The 44 mag in a rifle is only about 100 feet per second or so slower that a 20 ga with similar weight slugs. The ammo is less than half the price. The selling point for me though would be that I could get high end 44 mag ammo that would equal and likely exceed the ballistics of the 20. An example is the buffalo bore ammo’s 270 grain ammo does 1800fps out of an 18.5” barrel (you should get at least 1900 out of a 22” barrel). And the ammo would be slightly less than the over $2.00 a shot slug gun. I like the idea of being able to shoot a variety of power level (and price point ammo) in one gun. It would be more range time and couldn’t be any less pleasant to shoot than a slug gun. I do not enjoy shooting mine, they are simply tools. Personally I would get the 44 in a lever gun, but they do cost more, and I get the single shot attraction. I am trying to find an excuse to buy a Ruger no 1, but they are just too expensive for this family man, and I really don’t need another rifle. Just don’t tell the wife I said that. Whatever you get, I hope you enjoy it.
SlowDraw is offline  
Old 02-22-2012, 05:06 AM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 2,445

It seems you're stuck on the H&R HandyRifle. It's not a bad gun, but there are better options for hunting. The main issue is that they are a single shot gun. I can't imagine hunting with one by choice, as any repeater will get you a second shot faster than a single shot. No hunter on earth can say they never have or never will want a fast follow up shot. If the cost of the gun is the real issue, maybe a deal could be found on a used repeater.

But if you are focused on the Handy Rifle, I'd go with the 44 Mag. It is ideal for deer in the woods with shots less than 100. I recommend the Hornady LeverEvolution round.

Shotgun slugs have gotten much better in recent years, but for your situation they would not be any better than the 44, and the 44 is much cheaper to shoot.
UncleNorby is offline  
Old 02-22-2012, 06:36 AM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Farmington
Posts: 175

I have been shooting a rifled Rem 20ga. for the last 12 years. It stops everything you put a good shot on. My latest was a 172" 16pt at 160yds with open sights. A little practice with the gun and you will be hitting anything that walks through the woods.
btnovotny is offline  

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