Punty’s Picks for the Best Survival Calibers

Discussion in 'Preparedness' started by MAD Punty, Aug 19, 2018.

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  1. MAD Punty

    MAD Punty Supporter Supporter

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    [​IMG]
    What’s the best survival gun? Ever heard that question before? If you’re reading this, you’ve heard it, read it, discussed it, ad nauseam.

    Other than the prerequisites of actually having a gun, and having a gun that works reliably, it’s really a waste of time to discuss what the best survival gun is. There are just too many personal preferences, and too many circumstantial situations to calculate to make it a meaningful discussion.

    The truth is, the gun is secondary to the ammunition. The projectile does the work, not the platform, and by “platform” I mean the gun and the person using it. Anything and everything that goes into getting a projectile from point A to point B, but it’s the point B that matters. Putting the right projectile in the right place at the right time.

    The correct question to ask about survival is “What’s the best survival caliber”? To that question, my answer is “there isn’t one, but there are only a few that belong in the discussion”.

    Understand that when I talk about the best survival calibers, I am talking about versatility in obtaining food primarily, and self defense secondarily.

    Here is the list of the best survival calibers, the way I see it; .22 pellets, .22LR, .357 Magnum, and 12 gauge.

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    But Punty, a pellet gun? Are you serious? You recommend a toy for survival?”

    No. A good pellet gun is not a toy. A pellet gun, in many ways, is the ideal survival gun, and a .22 caliber pellet gun is the best choice, specifically a pneumatic pellet gun, not a CO2 charged one. Something that you can charge without accessories or stockpiling CO2. Mostly, I am talking about nitro-piston break barrel pellet guns.

    Let me preface by saying that I am talking about a reasonably quality pellet gun, something on the order of $150 or more, and they can be a lot more if you want to spend the $$$.

    The .22 pellet

    The .22 pellet gun can do most things that .22LR can do, and some things it can do better. It can be quieter than even a .22LR rifle, although that is not necessarily the case. The projectile itself, however, will not break the sound barrier, so you won’t be making any more noise than necessary, and this is important not only for stealth reasons, but also because it will not scare away game after taking a shot.

    There are other ways in which .22 pellets are superior to .22LR. It is cheaper. You can buy 400 rounds for about $6 or $7! Pellets are smaller, more available, and more portable. You can easily carry 1200 rounds in a cargo pocket without even noticing it.

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    With a .22 pellet gun you can hunt squirrels, rabbits, game birds such as turkey with head shots, grouse, possum, pigeons, and any similar sized game, which will be the most abundant game available in a pinch. Can you do that with .22LR? Sure, but why waste the ammunition? Why waste a valuable 10 cent round of ammunition when you can use a 1.5 cent pellet, and be quieter about it? You can stockpile thousands of rounds of pellets for $50! And…you never have to worry about it being confiscated, or finding space to store it, or worry about keeping it dry, or worry about it getting too old. It’s just a little chunk of lead. That $50 investment in ammunition could score you thousands of meals. Birds, squirrels, rabbits, most anything you can look out your kitchen window and see on any given morning. There for the taking any time.

    [​IMG]



    What’s more…if you run out of pellets, and your pellet gun still works, you can easily turn it into a dart gun by whittling a stick down to .22 caliber and using a leaf or two for wadding, and it’s much easier and more effective than trying to do that with a .177 caliber.

    So, these things make a .22 pellet gun and pellets one of the best survival calibers, and incidentally, one of the best survival guns, and best of all, it’s cheap!

    Even if you are some kind of crazy gun nut with a garage sized safe full of AR-15’s and other firearms, you should still have a .22 pellet gun or two, and several thousand rounds of pellets. That will extend whatever ammunition and preps you have for jobs that they are needed. For the price of the pellet gun and ammunition, you can arm your whole family with them and keep well stocked and fed making rabbit stew, or roasted squirrel.

    As for self defense, forget about it. The only self defense value of the .22 pellet gun, is that they often look menacing and most people won’t know the difference from a short distance.

    .22 Long Rifle

    Whenever discussion of survival firearms is in the works, the .22LR is always in it, and for good reason. It’s cheap, it’s compact, and it’s versatile. It’s a great hunting round for small game. It can be supersonic or subsonic, and even when it’s supersonic, it won’t be echoing off the mountains for miles around.

    The .22LR is not only versatile in what game can be harvested with it, but also what firearms can be used effectively with it, and those firearms are usually very inexpensive. You can use it in long guns or hand guns.

    There is very little I can say about the .22LR that has not been said before. It’s the ideal caliber to fend off starvation when talking about gunpowder rounds.

    Anyone that owns guns, owns at least one, and probably several, .22 caliber guns. It’s a great round for the whole family.

    For me personally, next to the Ruger 10/22, I like the Chiappa Little Badger. It’s compact, so it can be thrown in a backpack and hidden, lightweight at only 3.5 pounds or so, and frankly, it’s just plain fun. For $150 give or take, it’s just a delightful little gun.

    [​IMG]

    You can buy a variety of good, reliable, and accurate .22LR guns for cheaper or similar cost than you can buy a .22 pellet gun. Marlin, Ruger, and a variety of other manufacturers make good .22 rifles for under $200. There’s no reason not to have several, and for ammunition that hovers around 10 cents a round, you can’t go wrong.

    As for self defense, the .22LR is lacking. But, if you have a semi-automatic gun, it can get the job done in most circumstances. Nobody likes getting shot at, even if it is .22LR, and certainly no one likes getting shot, even with a .22LR. A Ruger 10/22 can be awfully intimidating if you are on the wrong side of the muzzle, and the .22LR is, believe it or not, the caliber that is most commonly used in homicides, so it is not totally inadequate for self defense, even though it is not ideal, and this is what gives it the most benefit over the .22 pellet gun.

    .357 Magnum

    The .357 Magnum is time tested and proven over the course of decades. It’s man stopping power is without debate.

    One of the greatest assets of the .357, the ability to choose .38 Special as the ammunition without any concern for changing any parts such as magazines or barrels in most platforms, and this makes it ideal for survival. With the right gun, you can harvest anything from rabbits to deer, and everything in between. Talk about versatile!

    With the .357, you can carry a lot more ammunition than you can with rifle rounds, and the Magnum round can do most of what smaller caliber rifle rounds can do. It has been known to be used in self defense against even bear and moose, but it’s underpowered for that. Anything less, and the .357 Magnum should get the job done effectively, and you won’t need to wear a load bearing vest to carry your ammo. If you spot some turkeys or rabbits, pop in your .38 Special. See a white tail deer? .357 Magnum will bring it down with a well placed shot and feed the family for a week or more.

    One thing to note about the .357 Magnum, is that your snub nosed revolver makes a lot of noise, but mostly negates the power of the cartridge. The effectiveness of .357 Magnum is dependent on barrel length much moreso than, say, .38 Special. For hunting and stopping power, you really want a barrel that is 4 inches or more to get the most out of the round. Something like a 5 inch barrel is going to give that powder time to burn before it leaves the muzzle.

    [​IMG]

    For an even more effective tool, there are long guns in .357 Magnum that will really maximize the velocity and accuracy of the round. Henry Repeating Arms, for example, makes lever guns that can take .357 Magnum or .38 Special that will give you the most bang out of your .357 Magnum round.

    But, in a end of the world scenario, for a handgun that can be carried and concealed, there are few rounds that can top the .357 Magnum, especially when cost and availability are taken into account, and they will lack the versatility of being dual caliber by nature like the .357/.38.

    For this reason, you could do a lot worse than having a long barreled .357 on your hip, with a box of Magnum in one pocket, and a box of .38 Special in the other. You can carry 100 rounds of ammunition, ready to shoot anything from rabbits to deer, and even keep your firearm hidden in your jacket at the same time. What other calibers can you say that?

    Self Defense? It’s a .357 Magnum. This round practically sets the standard.
     
  2. MAD Punty

    MAD Punty Supporter Supporter

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    12 Gauge

    Like the .22LR, the 12 gauge is an automatic entry into the “best survival guns’ discussion. There is no other gun more versatile and effective than the shotgun, and of these, the 12 gauge is the undisputed champion, especially if you have a break action shotgun with adapters for 20 gauge and .410.

    Shotgun rounds come in such a wide variety for such a wide range of uses that it is impossible to cover in this article. For this article, we will focus on what I choose as the fewest grades that cover the most necessities.

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    For me, that choice is #6, #4, 00 Buck, and Slugs. These 4 cartridges will allow me to harvest everything from squirrels, pigeons, and geese, to deer and moose. Understand that we are talking survival situations here, so ducks are fair game, although I have not included steel shot in this. I am not a duck hunter, nor will I ever be, so I have no need for water rated steel shot in everyday life, but if you want to add steel duck shot, that would be a good addition to my list, especially if you don’t want to contaminate your own water source.

    The problem with 12 gauge is that, along with it’s versatility, it comes with downsides. It is often expensive, it is bulky, it is heavy, and if you are using a single barrel, or a pump shotgun, you have to guess ahead of time what sort of ammunition to load. This is why my recommendation for a shotgun is a double barreled shotgun, with screw in chokes, and a barrel length that ill make it effective for wing shooting. If you’re serious about a “do it all” shotgun, you need a double barrel with at least 26″ barrels. Not only does it give you the most versatility, it is also tough to beat for reliability. There is very little that can go wrong and maintenance is very simple. If you’re hunting for survival, you want to be prepared to shoot whatever presents itself, whether a squirrel or a moose, and only a double barreled shotgun can do that.

    My choice is the CZ Hammer Classic, which I reviewed in an earlier post here CZ Hammer Classic, not your grandpa’s side by side.

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    With this, and the combination of #6, #4, 00 Buck, and slugs, I can choose to load one barrel with, say, #6 for any small game I may see, and the other with a slug in case I should get so lucky as to find a deer or moose, and not have to fumble with trying to change the ammunition in the magazine. I just spot the prey, select the barrel I need, and pull the trigger. (The Hammer Classic has two triggers instead of a selector switch.) Nothing in the woods is safe when you have a double barreled shotgun and these 4 calibers on hand.

    For self defense, what can I say? It’s a 12 gauge shotgun. Nobody staring down the big, fat muzzle of a 12 gauge is going to feel good about their chances, whether it’s a double barrel or pump action. Even a single shot shotgun will do. Buckshot is the great equalizer.

    So, these are my choices for the ideal calibers for survival and prepping. Some will agree, some will disagree, but I hope I have made a good argument for including these in any discussion.

    There are a lot of great rifle rounds, but few of them are as inexpensive, available, or versatile as these rounds. For me, center fire rifle calibers are excellent for specific applications, rather than versatility, and they tend to be bigger, bulkier, and more expensive, and thus take a back seat to the calibers I have highlighted here, no matter how much I love Mosin Nagants and AR-15’s.

    https://puntyventures.com/2018/08/19/puntys-picks-for-the-best-survival-calibers/
     
  3. atlastrekker

    atlastrekker Supporter Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Mine is pretty close, but I absolutely agree with you here.

    .22lr over 12 gauge, and a .357 with a long barrel on my hip. I would add a rifled barrel adapter from 12 gauge to .357 and never look back.
     
  4. MAD Punty

    MAD Punty Supporter Supporter

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    Certainly doesn't hurt to have rifled adapters at all. My experience with them, however, is that they are best used for wasting ammunition. The play between the adapter and the chamber sends the bullet off target, even with the rifling, so I am not a big fan of them.
     
  5. will62

    will62 Guide

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    I definitely see the value of the .22 pellet gun and I need to get one. The .22lr and the 12 ga are no brainers.

    I ran into a gentleman many years ago living in a remote cabin in the mountains of Virginia who used 12 ga. exclusively. He had a dedicated slug gun and one as he put it "for everything else". Claimed that was all he needed to for hunting and defense.
     
  6. Paulyseggs

    Paulyseggs Supporter Supporter

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    For me .

    22lr
    9mm
    12ga

    If I cant bring a handgun takedown 22 rifle . Usually Papoose .
     
  7. Paul Foreman

    Paul Foreman Supporter Supporter

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    that blackhawk is fine-looking, punty ...
     
  8. MAD Punty

    MAD Punty Supporter Supporter

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    We can both thank my grandfather. :)
     
  9. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

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    I think the 22 lr is a good choice. No one wants to get shot by it, and it will kill anything that you need it to. If you have a silencer it makes it even better.

    I think you need to have a proper defensive pistol on you, sometimes carried openly and sometimes concealed. That means 9mm, 38 sp, etc.. Something light weight easy to carry. I think everyone in the family should have one and be able to use it. Something you carry all the time and hope you never need to fire it, because if you do someone is likely going to die, either you or them.

    Next, I think a defensive rife is good to have on hand. The 22 lr can do but we have them so might as well make them available, 223/5.56, 30-30, 357 mag carbine, etc., what-ever you have. I don't think this is something that would be used as it would mean someone is getting killed, either you or them.

    For urban location I have no use for the shotgun. It's heavy, holds few rounds, and has limited range. If I'm going to have a long gun I want it to be a rifle.

    I think the presence of guns is important as it is what's going to decide who the victims are going to be. Just the sight of them is a deterrent. Those without are easy prey.
     
  10. LostViking

    LostViking Supporter Supporter

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    @MAD Punty,

    I think your advice is solid and sound!
    I run a very parallel path. With the addition of .22Magnum into the group.

    For comparison sake.
    I live in the woods. Thick northern Adirondack woods. Different areas may drive different choices. Just like with blades. There is no right answer here. It is what works for folks and what they are comfortable using.

    The economy and stealth of the air rifle is tough to argue.
    It may not be Rambo's first choice. But Rambo is a fictional character.

    Cheap is good, quiet is better.

    The .22/.22Mag has long been an excellent all around round. The .22Mag is both barkier and more expensive. But it adds a little terminal energy to the mix as well. A Ruger Single six offers both cylinders so choice is good. Just like the .38/.357.

    I have long been a proponent of the .38/.357 combo. The Cowboys weren't stupid. Having the ability to fire one cartridge from both handgun and long gun makes solid sense. Your observation that the .357 gets new life from a long gun is also extremely accurate. This is one of my all time favorite General Purpose rounds.

    The ability to utilize .357, .38Special, and all the +P variants makes good sense as a survival type gun. .38/.357 is and always has been a heck of a cartridge.

    The 12 Gauge is a versatile tool. Slugs, bird shot, buck shot, and other creative rounds open a lot of doors. And they help less skilled folks make shots they might otherwise not. Plus it's hard to beat a shottie for home defense.

    I'm glad you mentioned portability. I like .45-70 as a round. It does a lot right. As a former Military cartridge, it can get the job done. But I can tell you plainly, I wouldn't want to carry 500 rounds very far. That is what makes the .22 so inviting. A brick of 500 weighs next to nothing. If I have to "Bug Out" my "Bang Flop" won't be making the trip. Sad, but honest.

    It's also hard to conceal the bark and flash of the .45-70. Something that may or may not be necessary down the road. And they aren't cheap to shoot anymore.

    I think your choices are solid and make a lot of real world sense. Perhaps not the choices of Hollywood legends. But food on the table, defend your family, real world solid.

    Thanks
    LV,
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2018
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  11. OrienM

    OrienM Guide

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    Good article!

    I use kind of the 'lite' version of this. I have:
    .22lr & 20 gauge (combo gun)
    .38 special (revolver)
    As a small guy (under 140 lb) I just prefer shooting the smaller 20 gauge and .38...both are plenty fearsome if loaded appropriately, IMHO.

    I also used to have a pellet gun (.177) and found it very useful around the farm, but alas, it died. I should get another. Subsonic .22s make a tolerable replacement.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2018
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  12. WhisperInThePine

    WhisperInThePine Wubba lubba dub dub

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    My two guns of choice would be my Marlin Model 60, and my brand new Stevens 12 ga Single Shot. I just bought the 12 ga this week because my 20 ga single shot didn't have the the ability to swap out chokes. It was built with a modified, and that's all it will ever be. I bought the 12 ga for more power and versatility.
    I also bought a turkey choke with it, so.... gobble gobble.
     
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  13. Oakenhart

    Oakenhart Scout

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    First off,thanks for a well thought out and well written article. My thinking follows a similar path,with the small exception of a 20 gauge shotgun in place of the 12. My shoulder is just to damaged to handle the recoil of a 12g anymore. I agree with you on the usefullness of an air rifle,taken many squirrels with one,as well as garden pests. Hmm may be about time to look into a new one.
     
  14. bosque bob

    bosque bob Scout

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    Good article and advice. Only place I differ is by having a 44 instead of a 357 but the basic concepts are solid. Thanks
     
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  15. woodsmanjohn

    woodsmanjohn Supporter Supporter Bushclass II

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    That is a nice selection and excellent article. For me pretty much the same except I don't own a 357 I do carry a 9mm though. I have a 10/22 takedown for my vehicle with a brick of ammo.
     
  16. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

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    This concept of "survival" is the basis for all almost all of the guns that I own except for my 20 ga sporting shot guns.

    If I was rural and had the forest to hunt I would definitely list a 20 ga but I live on the coast, heavily populated with nothing to hunt with a shotgun. I suppose if you head into the hills there might be some small game but you'd be attracting a lot of attention as the sound of the shot would ecco towards the city and you'd be spotted right away.

    Trapping or snaring birds and fishing would be the wild food around here. I think you'd still want a revolver on your hip to let a potential BG to think twice before attempting to rob you of your catch!
     
  17. drobs

    drobs Guide

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    Seems you're missing a caliber.
     
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  18. Keithturkjr

    Keithturkjr Scout

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    I’m kinda liking the 5.56 as a wilderness survival caliber. It’s easy to carry a lot of it and you can kill any animal on the planet if it’s coming out of an AR. If all I could have was a 4+1 bolt action I’d still pick it for ammo quantity. The Russians used to say “quantity has a quality of its own “. Definitely not the most ideal caliber for many types of game, but extremely versatile in a survival situation.

    As a one gun legal hunting option 12 gauge is very versatile, and is a great choice for a beginning sportsman that doesn’t mind some recoil. Beginners never know what kind of hunters they’ll become.
    The ammo bulk kinda rules it out as something to “head for the hills” with though.

    If you really want a quiet way to hunt with I think a nice crossbow is the way to go. They shoot just like a rifle, with somewhat reusable bullets.
    Add a NVGs and an IR laser and you get the perfect poacher weapon. Yep you can do some highly illegal stuff with the utmost efficiency with that rig.
    You can change the points to hunt smaller stuff too.
    Very unethical but effective and quiet. Crossbow can be a very ethical choice it just depends on how you use it.

    As far as self defense I’m gonna use my good looks,... if they don’t work I’ll try good manners lol.
     
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  19. Gary V

    Gary V Scout

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    I have pellet rifles in .177, .22 and .25 caliber. I'm a big fan of pellet rifles. Among some of the great features of these as mentioned in the OP is that pellet rifles are not considered firearms. This means you can fire them anywhere. Also as stated they are much more stealthy and and ammo is a fraction of the costs. I enjoy plinking in the back yard with my pellet rifles knowing I'm not going through nearly $15 per 30 rounds like with my M4. One of my .22 caliber rifles is supersonic at 1650 fps which makes it a pretty serious contender with the .22 LR. The only drawback is that all my pellet rifles are single shot but then you generally get a second shot since they don't tend to scare the critters away (when subsonic). You can also carry 500 rounds in shoe polish size can.

    Shotgun or other large caliber? There is more small game to be had and with less effort then medium and large game so for survival purposes I think they are overkill. What would you do with an entire deer or boar carcass anyway?

    Slingshot? You need a lot of practice to get good enough otherwise you're going to end up hungry and frustrated. You'll also need to pack ammo for it because rocks just don't fly straight for any distance.

    Steel rat traps? They require very little time or effort to set up. Four traps weight about a pound which may be less then your shotgun ammo.
    https://www.amazon.com/Large-Powerf...qid=1536093115&sr=8-6&keywords=steel+rat+trap

    Yoyo fishing reels. Hang these from a branch and when a fish strikes the trigger mechanism trips and it sets the hook in the fish. Cool device but illegal in many places. Still good for emergency and weigh very little.
    https://www.amazon.com/Large-Powerf...qid=1536093115&sr=8-6&keywords=steel+rat+trap

    Snares? Snaring game is an art that takes a lot more finesse then you may think if you never tried. They don't weigh or cost much but you can invest a lot of time finding a good place to put them and setting them up. If you don't have the experience it could turn in to a learning curve you didn't have time to waste on.

    In addition, you should be able to identify a few common wild edible plants for every season in your area and know how to make potable water without any cookware. I would hope you would at least have a lighter in your pocket to start a fire and not just a ferro rod. If you need a fire quickly a Bic lighter is cheap and dependable. If it's cold, stick it in your armpit, crotch or where the sun doesn't shine to warm it up. It will light.

    So in the end I would prefer a pellet rifle and a selection of small simple traps. I could be feasting on squirrels, rodents and fish while the other guy is staring at his 150 lbs of meat that spoiled overnight while he defended it from bears and coyotes. Good times.

    *** edit ***
    I wrote this with the mindset that this was about wilderness survival whereas it may be more of a SHTF situation. For the latter I have 4-10 and 20 gauge with reloading materials in addition to the above that I already mentioned.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
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  20. Malpaso

    Malpaso Tracker

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    Personally, I always take reloading capability in any long term survival discussion.
     
  21. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

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    22 LR is top of my list.

    I like 9mm, 223, and 38 sp/357 mag, but the one cartridge that I'll always have the most off is the 22 lr.

    It penetrates well enough to get the job done, and if your situation requires you to leave your home it's the cartridge you'll want to be carrying.
     
  22. NevadaBlue

    NevadaBlue Graybeard Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    I agree. If I had to limit myself to two guns, I would have a 22 rifle and a 12 gauge shotgun.
    If I get 3, hmmm... probably a 357 revolver. :14:
     
  23. drobs

    drobs Guide

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    But Punty where's your rifle in a rifle caliber?
    The rifle offers longer range accuracy + penetration.
    This list is just not complete without it. Especially with your mention of an "end of the world scenario."

    My basic survival firearms battery is as follows:
    Pistol in a defensive caliber.
    Rifle in a military rifle caliber, preferably a magazine fed semi-auto.
    Pump Shotgun
    22 LR - pistol and / or rifle.

    Multiples of the above. If you want to add pellets guns, slingshots, and other types of firearms to your collection feel free to so after you have the basics.

    Long term shtf - the shotgun either gets left behind or handed off to a friend / family member.
    I want a rifle in rifle caliber.
     
  24. MAD Punty

    MAD Punty Supporter Supporter

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    Rifles have a place, of course, but I just don't think they are the most versatile, and the ammunition tends to be bigger, bulkier, and more expensive, excepting the shotgun, but a shotgun blows away any rifle in versatility.

    My theory is that you prepare for the game that is the most abundant and easiest to hunt, first. That mostly means critters 20 pounds or less.

    It's definitely helpful to have a rifle for large game, of course...but a .357 can take down anything, say...200 pounds or so, and with .38 it can take down anything in the 10 to 100 pound range, roughly...and I can carry lots and lots of it.

    Let me put it this way....if you had to be on the move, hiking every day to bug out or whatever.....I'll eat a lot better with a .22 or a .357 than you will with your centerfire rifle. Whatever it is your rocking, it should be able to put squirrels and rabbits on the menu and not blow them to bits. .38 special is very marginal there, of course..but I think you could take down a rabbit with a .38 and still have something to eat, though I've never done it.

    Against 2 legged predators, I'll take a rifle. But that was a secondary consideration in my blog article. Eating was the main consideration.

    As far as long range goes...that's true, but if we are talking a long range situation, I'm not shooting it out...I'm moving out. I have no intention of engaging in any gunfights that aren't absolutely necessary. I'll leave that to the GI Joe preppers killing each other with their awesome guns. I'll be gone, or hiding somewhere that I can solve any problem with my 12 gauge and buckshot. Screw aiming....I'll just unleash a hail of buckshot. If I have to aim, so do you, and that means I can move amongst cover, likely.

    First rule of survival...don't get into gunfights.

    Second rule of survival, if you get into a gun fight, fight dirty, take cheap shots, use buckshot.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2018
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  25. Jon Foster

    Jon Foster Guide

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    I find most of the replies here interesting. And I have most calibers mentioned. But one of my favorite rounds in the .45. I love the Long Colt and the ACP. Thus one of my newer favorites to conceal carry is the S&W Governor. It's a .410 shotgun perfect for up close defense, a .45 Long Colt and a .45 ACP. The use of moon clips for the .45 ACP means you are basically carrying a pocket full of speed loaders. For normal hunting use a .22LR works fine. Especially in something that breaks down for easy carry in a pack. Shotguns in general aren't bad either but they are a little more bulky...

    Jon.
     
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  26. MAD Punty

    MAD Punty Supporter Supporter

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    :eek:

    The Governor is on my list of gottahaveit's.

    But concealed carry? Holy crap. I'm guessing off body or fanny pack. People sometimes don't believe I carry a full size M&P, which isn't even in the same league....lol.

    EDIT: For all those folks that prefer the 20 gauge to a 12 gauge, I don't have any complaints about that. I think that a 20 gauge can do 85-90% of what a 12 gauge can do in most areas, and the ammo is lighter and more compact...probably cheaper, I don't know. So I think the 20 gauge is a fine substitute without any overall downsides, just a few pros and cons.

    The reason I chose 12 gauge is primarily just to get more shot in the air, and the ability to downsize to 20 gauge effectively at short ranges.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2018 at 8:14 AM
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  27. Jon Foster

    Jon Foster Guide

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    The Governor isn't the most practical every day carry but on hikes or being in the woods I like it. I have the version with the alloy frame so weight isn't a problem at all. You can carry comfortably on the hip or even with a shoulder holster. I carried a Colt 1911 for almost 25 years and was able to wear jeans and a T-Shirt and still keep it covered in the small of my back. The only time it showed was when I bent over to get items off the bottom shelves in stores.

    Jon.
     
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  28. PACoureurDuBois

    PACoureurDuBois Scout

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    I have a chiappa double badger chambered in .22LR/20ga. I can throw some no. 6 shot in my bag with a few slugs, and as was stated, take down pretty much anything I come across. To me, it's my perfect woods gun.
     
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  29. MAD Punty

    MAD Punty Supporter Supporter

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    I was looking at that one.

    I'd be interested in your thoughts on it. I've seen some reviews on it on youtube that were less than stellar, but if you have some personal observations, I'd love to hear it. I like the Little Badger, and of course a 20g/.22LR would be a fantastic little combo gun to have....een though that means another caliber (20g) that I ahve to start buying.
     
  30. RickS

    RickS Supporter Supporter

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    I have a 22 insert for my s/s 20 gauge, 357 revolver. These are my choices for food gathering, I take this combo everytime I go to the woods. The insert isn't super accurate, but at the distances I shoot at its good enough. If I'm gathering food my traps and fishing equipment will be getting most of the workout.
     
  31. PACoureurDuBois

    PACoureurDuBois Scout

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    It's a very nice little gun. Super light, 19" barrel, so it's a dream to carry in the woods all day.

    The 20ga takes the rem-choke system, so if you a have a super tight Turkey choke, you can really reach out and touch small game at good distances. 40-50 yards is probably your ethical limit, I usually keep mine around 30.

    The fiber optic sight leaves a little to be desired, but still very usable. I personally like it better than the Little badger sight system.

    The double trigger is great for follow up shots, i.e. "I missed that rabbit with the .22 but I'm not gonna miss with the 20ga."

    Even with a shorter barrel, using Brenneke slugs, I can pull 2-3 inch groups at 50 yards.

    And having the 20ga as the bottom barrel lowers the bore axis enough to remove some of the bite.

    The wood furniture is very solid and good looking for the price point. It's a really robust gun, and I just think that the people who are knocking it are really just having too high of expectations.
     
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  32. MAD Punty

    MAD Punty Supporter Supporter

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    Interesting, and thanks.

    Very interesting about the remchokes....the new Henry shotguns take remchokes also.
     
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