View Full Version : New to Hunting...

March 14, 2008, 09:59 AM
I am new to hunting and very excited about it. Was hoping to get some opinions from the pros! My first hunting quarry will be for turkey in southern Wisconsin. I am looking to buy a new shotgun, what would be some good choices, keeping in mind price but yet quality. This gun will also be used for hunting deer in southern Wisconsin, so it will need to have changeable barrels. Remember this is wisconsin, so the weather is a factor, which guns do better in cold and wet situations? Would also like to use this gun for shooting trap and clay and skeet.
Next, I may hunt deer in northern Wisconsin, (remember the weather) what would be a good rifle? Was thinking a 30-06, 300, 308. I have my dad's 30-30, but it is need of serious cleaning, and has been so long since it has been fired, not even sure of how safe it is. Sadly it does have some rust due to a small flood. :confused:

March 14, 2008, 10:58 AM
One of the best deals on a shotgun I've seen, quality vs. price, is the Remington 870 mag. express. It's a pump shotgug that's very ruged. My son has one in 20ga. with a vented barrel that has cangeable chokes. He uses 2 3/4" #6 low brass for rabbits with the imp. cyl. choke, and mod. for clays, it also has a turkey extra full and will shoot 3" magnums. I told him if he passed his hunter safety course, I would get him the slug barrel, and so he aced it. This gun with the 2 barrels will cover anything you could shoot with a shotgun accept water fowl. Get a 12ga.

As for the rifle, if the largest game you will be hunting is Whitetail, get a good relitively inexpensive bolt action in 25/06, 270. These 2 guns will cover any game in Wisconsin. I used to live in Lake Geneva years ago and the farmers out in the country used to let shoot the groundhogs on their farm to get rid of them, I also had my first coyote kill there. The 25/06 is a real flat shooting SOB.

Good luck.

March 14, 2008, 11:48 AM
Hard to go wrong with an 870. Regarding rifles, clean up your Dad's. Have a gunsmith check it out. It's a sin to leave it rusty and unfired. If you're set on a new rifle, take some time and find a good used one. Don't think caliber first--the list of calibers that clobber whitetails is very long. Think about the action that works for you and a quality firearm. The thing on caliber is make sure good factory ammo is readily available (I presume you are not a reloader). Once you do a little shooting--and do spend time on the range--you will probably figure out what you like and don't like. Then go get your ultimate rifle in the "perfect" caliber.

March 14, 2008, 04:08 PM
I also have to agree on the 870. I have a security model express, and it is a great shooter. You may want to check out the express combo: http://www.remington.com/products/firearms/shotguns/model_870/model_870_express_combos.asp

It comes with two barrels, one for fowl and one for deer. If you are worried about the elements, go with the synthetic stock, but really wood should do fine as well. It's hard to beat the price for what you get.

As for rifles, I would say something in .270, .308, or .30-06 would be your best bet. Any would more than do the job, but the recoil won't punish you like a .300 and the ammo is cheaper as well. If you are recoil sensitive, you may take a look at a .243 winchester. It's about as small as I would go, but will still work just fine as long as you put the shot where it needs to go.

March 14, 2008, 09:28 PM
870 for me to. The Wingmaster rather than the express though.

If you're buying used, there are a truck load of good used shotguns out there. Picking a good one shouldn't be that difficult.

You might want to take the .30-30 to a smith and see what it'd take to put it in working order. If the price is less than a good used rifle, then you have a fine deer gun right there.

March 14, 2008, 09:34 PM
Since nobody mentioned the 870 I put my vote in for this underdog.

Your father's 30/30 might be all you need. I agree with cleaning it up and seeing how it shoots.

March 14, 2008, 10:17 PM
have you looked into what is online in Wisconcheeselandson, :D

If you are under 35 and haven't taken Firearms safety this is where you could start.

Good luck and be safe

March 14, 2008, 11:22 PM
It's been said an 870 is all the shotgun you will need and I agree it is a great choice.I rifle hunt in Wisc every year north of Madison and and the 30 30 by far is the most common rifle in the field,get your Dads checked out and cleaned up and you will be ready for any game that Wisconsin has to offer ELMOUSMC Mgunnerysgt USMC 1965-1992 Welcome and good hunting

March 15, 2008, 07:51 PM
I have heard about this thing called an 870, is it any good? Just kidding, but really thanks for the sugestions. I will consider all of them. I am planning to get the 30-30 cleaned and would love to use it, just would like something as a backup. And yes, i am taking hunter safety, the only way to go. It's really a good class, and I am enjoying it.

March 16, 2008, 10:07 PM
Can't go wrong with an 870 indeed, I bought my Mossberg 835 in Wisconsin though, also a quality pump. As my only camo shotgun, it's my dedicated turkey gun, and I have a rifled barrel that I keep around should I hunt deer in Illinois/Ohio - usually the Wisconsin season's all the time I got though. I use a 30-06 for whitetails up there. I'm for cleaning up the 30/30 too, though, particularly with some of the new stuff in lever ammo it seems like a good first option and an inexpensive one at that.

My first season was turkey as well. Got 'em to talk to me, but got skunked nonetheless. Been going strong since though. Watch some videos, learn to call, and get out in the field. Spring turkey's a lot of fun.

March 17, 2008, 05:24 AM
The Remington 870 with various barrels in 12 ga would be my primary choice (3" chamber). It does not have to be a new one. Extra barrels are commonly available. I like the Mossberg shotguns and if you want to consider a bit more money, perhaps a Beretta semi-auto. Remington makes the 1100 which is a semi-auto too. You don't really need the semi-auto, but the action dampens the recoil somewhat. After you buy the shotgun, be sure to pattern it by taking a couple shots at a big piece of white paper to see how it groups the shot.

Yes, I would also cleanup the 30-30. If you want to use the 30-30 as a back up, I'd look at a Remington Model 700 in 270 win, 308 win, or 30-06. A 243 works too if you want a rifle that perhaps straddles the varmint to white tail use. I wouldn't buy anything smaller than a 243 for deer hunting. I prefer a scoped rifle and the 3-9x is probably the most popular and best size.

March 17, 2008, 10:40 AM
MOSSBERG! from my experience it is the most dependable pump shotgun on the market. i have been abusing a Mossberg 835 Ulti Mag for approximately 15 years without the first problem. it has been dropped in the mud more times than i can count, fell off of a moving truck several times, etc. i'll never buy any other shotgun other than a Mossberg (chances are this one will last forever anyway and i won't have too).

March 17, 2008, 12:22 PM
I have had both a Mossberg 500 and a Rem 870. Both were great, hardworking shotguns. I think either one would do the trick.

March 17, 2008, 02:08 PM
For turkey i recommend a mossberg 835. Great gun & Reasonably priced. Im very happy with it. My bro n law bought a rem 870. he hates it and wish's he had bought the mossberg.

March 19, 2008, 05:59 PM
The invention of the auto-loading shotgun was introduced 100 years ago. Just kidding. The 870 will be fine as long as you take steps to protect the finish. In the humid/rainy environment of the midwest, an express finish will resemble a shipwreck in short order.

On the other hand, as mentioned there is the invention of the auto loader to consider. Turkey loads can be punishing, autos take some of the sting out. Some will say they are not as reliable, but my 11-87 has seen much rough handling in a duck boat and has yet to have a problem. Add a turkey choke and my work horse feels like a safe queen. I may even get a slug barrel and just have one hunting shotgun!

March 25, 2008, 04:47 PM
If you get a chance to purchase a Russian Baikal MP-153 12 ga. 89mm auto jump on it. Shoots 2 3/4, 3, and 3'1/2 inch shot shells, and is steel shot rated. Make sure it has EAA Corp. on it. It a good all purpose shotgun. Welcome aboard : )

March 30, 2008, 05:51 AM
I like the 870. BUT I dont own one. I do own 3 Mossberg 500s (12-20-410) My 12 I bought 12 years ago used for $100. Best money I haver spent on a gun. I am to careless to have a pretty wall hanger. It has harvested more game than anything I own. I say get what you can afford and like. Try out your buddies. Check with your gun club see if they have rent a guns.
As far as rifles. Like everyone above said, clean up the 30-30. Check with your locals and see what is preffered(only to compare) Always looking for a new excuse for a gun:D

April 8, 2008, 11:19 PM
No doubt the 870 is a great gun.

I however would recommend a Thompson Center Encore. You can get a shotgun, rifle, and 22 LR barrel. You could do it all with one firearm. Tom.

April 9, 2008, 02:09 AM
My duck boat's motor crapped out on me one morning so I just paddled with my 870, hunted with it, then paddled back with it:D I've been using the same 870 wingmaster that I started bird hunting with, it was given to me by my dad who bought it when he was 13, never had a single problem with it and it has seen the bottom of our duck pond more than a few times (IMHO the most versatile and dependable shotgun on the market). The 30-30 is a great round for deer, just clean 'er out and make sure everything functions and try it out, no need to buy another if you don't really need it... unless you realllllly need another gun;)