20 ga slug, 450 bushmaster, or .357 carbine?

Deerherder

Eight Pointer
I’m considering adding one of these to my gun safe before deer season. My goal is to have a solid 75-100 yard gun for deer. I have long range rifles for places those are appropriate for, but I’d like a brush gun that drops quickly after that 150 yard or so point & is in the dirt at 350 yds or so.

Several of my spots are being developed around and I want to be as safe as possible. I would be in a tree stand with any of these & would take proper care to be sure I’m firing in a safe manner.

Any preferences among these three?
 

pattersonj11

Old Mossy Horns
I have personally been thinking about the 357 lever actions. Expensive pistol bullet but a cheap rifle bullet. It would be good for deer and for fun.

Also contemplated a 45-70.
 

TravisLH

Old Mossy Horns
It’s close with the 357 and 450...... I think the 450 would be more effective but as I have quite a few 357 smiths I’d also like a rifle that shoots it as well


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nccatfisher

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
If you are wanting a close range killing machine the 20 ga. slug gun I would say if you went with the Savage would have the upper hand. It won't come in as nice a package as some of the others you mentioned as far as looks go.
 

ABolt

Twelve Pointer
The 20 gauge gives you a shotgun-only zone option. I have about $350 in an H&R with scope and it's a tack-driver with Hornady SST slugs. Yes, it's a single-shot, but you only need one. For a firearm to fill such a niche requirement, the minimal entry cost is nice...
 

Deerherder

Eight Pointer
The 20 gauge gives you a shotgun-only zone option. I have about $350 in an H&R with scope and it's a tack-driver with Hornady SST slugs. Yes, it's a single-shot, but you only need one. For a firearm to fill such a niche requirement, the minimal entry cost is nice...
I hadn’t even thought about the H&R, I was really thinking of the Savage 220. How long is the barrel on the H&R? I have a 12 ga 870 combo with an 18” slug barrel & I have killed a deer with it, but the muzzle blast and recoil from such are short barrel make it really unpleasant to shoot & a cantilevered barrel with a scope mount costs almost as much as a slug gun. I was thinking 20 ga with a longer barrel would be a more pleasant weapon to shoot compared to what I’ve got. The shotgun zone thing you point out already had me leaning 20 gauge.
 

spittinfire

Six Pointer
I’ve got a couple 357 rifles and a 12ga slug gun and if you asked me to pick one to go hunting it would hands down be one of my 357s. They’re easier to handle, easier to shoot and will make the deer just as dead at the 100yard range you’re talking about.

450 would be fun to play with but would cost a lot to shoot, even if you reload.


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41magnum

Twelve Pointer
for lever guns to 150 I prefer 45 Long Colt or 454 Casull chambering
44 mag is another Lever choice with a bit more punch than the 357
 

ABolt

Twelve Pointer
I hadn’t even thought about the H&R, I was really thinking of the Savage 220. How long is the barrel on the H&R? I have a 12 ga 870 combo with an 18” slug barrel & I have killed a deer with it, but the muzzle blast and recoil from such are short barrel make it really unpleasant to shoot & a cantilevered barrel with a scope mount costs almost as much as a slug gun. I was thinking 20 ga with a longer barrel would be a more pleasant weapon to shoot compared to what I’ve got. The shotgun zone thing you point out already had me leaning 20 gauge.
The H&R 20 gauge I have came with a 24" bull barrel. Because of the weight, this is a stand-only gun, but it makes recoil minimal. It's certainly not as nice of a firearm as the Savage 220, but the entry point is much lower, and it gets the job done nicely...
 

Lee

Four Pointer
The 20 gauge slug is the shortest range choice listed. Sighted for 20 yards it will be 3-4 inches high at 100, dead on again around 140 yards, and in the dirt by 300 yards. This is from Federal's trajectory chart not my testing.
 

FishHunt

Twelve Pointer
I’m considering adding one of these to my gun safe before deer season. My goal is to have a solid 75-100 yard gun for deer. I have long range rifles for places those are appropriate for, but I’d like a brush gun that drops quickly after that 150 yard or so point & is in the dirt at 350 yds or so.

Several of my spots are being developed around and I want to be as safe as possible. I would be in a tree stand with any of these & would take proper care to be sure I’m firing in a safe manner.

Any preferences among these three?
Unless those are your only choices a bigger caliber handgun cartridge bolt action or lever gun carbine will do exactly what you are after. The Ruger 77/44 is a fine short range deer/pig/bear gun and the .45 Colt and .454 Casull offerings in various lever guns are an even better choice.

Of the rounds listed I'd opt for the .450BM, it is shooting the same size/weight bullet as most 20ga sabot slug offerings in a handier package than most any 20ga slug gun.

<>< Fish
 

bryguy

Old Mossy Horns
Depends on what the county laws are in regards to rifles and minimum heights. I hunt mainly in Wilson and we have an 8ft minimum for rifles. If you have those, then a 45 cal smokeless muzzleloader is a better choice followed by a 20 gauge slug gun followed by a handgun in a rifle caliber.


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BLOODBROTHER

Twelve Pointer
I bought a Ruger American Ranch in 450 BM and Ive only had it to the range once so far but after the first few rounds, I was shooting a quarter sized group at 100 yards and the recoil wasnt as much as i had thought. Its a sweet little gun. I put a Vortex scope on mine and am very excited t do more bench work and then hit the field with it.

They arent too pricey to shoot but cost more than others. Im not a reloader but even if rifle ammo is high for a certain caliber, I can live with it because i dont shoot 100s of rounds through most of my rifles
 

Dinny

Button Buck
I really like my H&R .357 mag rifle. Near zero recoil, low noise, and works good on deer. Tons of ammo choices.
This ^^^

You could also ream it to 357 Maximum and extend your range and killing power. You could still shoot 38 Special, 357 Magnum, and 360 Dan Wesson loads from it.

Thanks, Dinny
 

JJWise

Eight Pointer
I like the 20gauge option because you can also use it for shotgun only areas. The 357 I’m sure would be sufficient, but for hunting purposes I’d feel better with a 44mag carbine instead.
 
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