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Why Were Bolt-Action Shotguns A Thing?

Old 04-12-2018, 10:04 PM
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I have a Mossberg 695 slug gun. But they also made smoothbores. It shoots as well as any slug gun out there I think. Not uncommon to have three shots touching.

I have a sears 16 gauge as well. I use it for squirrels and will try to take a turkey with it.

Some of them are neat old guns, and can be bought cheap usually.

Are they better than a pump, naw. But they are different and are fun to pull out at hunting camp occasionally.

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Old 04-13-2018, 03:38 AM
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They were cheaper than pump/ auto guns, but were multi shot which were better than a single shot. They were primarily meant for an economy waterfowl gun. Dad bought me one for my first hunting gun: 36" bbl 12 gauge JC Higgins for 25.00 in 1977. I was awful proud of that, shot my first deer with it, but as soon as I could afford to, replaced it with a pump gun. I bought one of the Savage 12 gauge rifled slug guns about 20 years ago, and was far from satisfied with it. too darn long , feeding wasn't very good, and I wasn't impressed with the accuracy. I stuck with my Ithaca Deerslayer.
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Old 04-15-2018, 04:48 AM
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Friend had a Mossy 16ga bolt. Bought it because he used a bolt action Stevens deer rifle. Said it was easy to use and took the same motions for both. It had a mag that held extra rounds not a single shot.

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Old 04-16-2018, 06:36 PM
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I own a Mossberg bolt action with the C-lect choke system. When it first came out it was novel, because it allowed a person to change the choke in the field, which could be useful if you hunted multiple types of game on the same trip or on the same day. You could literally carry #7 shot or 00 buckshot on a hunting trip and harvest squirrel, birds or deer (which have overlapping seasons in some areas, such as the upper Adirondacks of NYS).

I'll also argue that bolt action slug guns (such as Savage and H&R) are the most accurate slug guns on the market and also some of the most expensive shotguns made for a single purpose. Compared with a Mossberg or Remington pump (that have a choke tube system or different barrels), these slugs guns with fixed rifled barrels will cost you $400-1000...
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Old 04-17-2018, 10:10 AM
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The first bolt action shotguns were converted model 1898 Mausers. Tens of thousands were sold in the US from about 1920 to late 1930s.
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:43 AM
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That is fascinating, Falcon. Had the German industry not been under such pressure after the punitive Treaty of Versailles, we might have never seen these!

I wonder if the gun hunters_life was talking about was one.
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:44 AM
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Pretty Cool.


Originally Posted by falcon
The first bolt action shotguns were converted model 1898 Mausers. Tens of thousands were sold in the US from about 1920 to late 1930s.
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Old 04-17-2018, 08:25 PM
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I really don't know but that's not going to stop me from guessing.

Since the bolt action rifle was THE rifle action since the 1890's maybe some gun company figured that a shotgun with the same action would catch on. It turned out not so much.

On my somewhat personal experience. I remember my Uncle buying a bolt action 20 gauge for his oldest in the middle to late 1950's. I seem to recall it was clip fed and had a poly choke. Even though his brothers and I were envious of his possession we could see it's limitations as a repeater. And in a few years it was traded off for something better.
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Old 04-21-2018, 10:39 AM
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In the 1950s, my mom bought one from Sears for my dad to deer hunt with. They lived in a slug area and were working class. It fit the budget. Dad gave to to me a few years ago, and I actually went after a fall turkey with it.
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