Saturday, February 19, 2011


For many decades, I've been interested in having a combination rifle/shotgun, much like the venerable but sadly no longer in production Savage Model 24 in a multitude of caliber and gauge combinations.

Many Texas hunters like my dad would carry double barrel shotguns during certain parts of East Texas hunting seasons when bird and deer seasons intertwined (so they said), carrying a shotshell in one barrel and a slug in the other. The slug, for either an opportune deer or hog or perhaps very large turkey that one doesn't want riddled with birdshot.

These guys were all raised during the depression, raised when hunting for the family with single shot firearms or double barreled shotguns was the way protein got on the table in many cases. My family had a big place, and a lot of kids, and duties of hunting and gathering fell upon the kids in many cases. They hunted, they trapped and they fished for food and money for the family.

When they grew up, they went in the military then to college. He and his friends from college hunted and fished together for the rest of their lives, and most all of them hailed from similar East and Central Texas roots as my dad, all them ending up in Houston living their lives and raising their families. Brothers of different mothers, basically.

Lots of them, our family included, had weekend places in the country. Like the great song by the Marshall Tucker Band, "Walking my property line" says, my idea of a good time, is walking my property line, arming oneself with guns and fishing rods and making walks around the property are an essential part of country living with most folks I know. Some have places so large they have to traverse their property line in a vehicle, and a few have private fenceline roads so they don't have to use public roads when the fenceline and road parallel each other.

So when we'd visit each others places, or go to our own, doing some property line walking was always part of the visit. And of course, during hunting seasons, we were usually armed with the appropriate firearm for what was in season.

So again, going back to the 1930's, when people were hungry, broke and not in a position to let an opportunity for food for their family walk away on the hoof or fly away on the wing, a double barreled shotgun with a slug in one and a shotshell in the other was a way to be prepared for whatever wildlife one might scare up.

Some of my dad's friends did have combination rifle/sshotguns, and most of them were of the Savage brand. One had a Savage Camper's Companion model that broke into two pieces for easy carry, and I thought that was a neat gun. Other makers have made combination guns but I'm pretty sure no one is making a reasonably priced one at this time.

I've been on the lookout for one at used gun stores for quite a few years now. I'm not sure about all of the different calibers and combinations that these guns were offered in, but a nice .30-30 with a 12 or 20 gauge would be great. I'm just going to have to one day decide to hit one of the larger gun shows with some trade fodder and cash and see what I can find.

I'd be interested in hearing about various brands of guns and various caliber combinations from anyone with experience with these type of guns.


  1. My Dad had an old, beaten-up, Savage .22 over .410 with a Rynite forearm and stock. As you said, it was a meat gun.

    I too would like to have a .30-30 over a .20 gauge... dunno why... I don't have any use for it up here... it just sounds like an all around good gun.

  2. Your dad had the right idea. I was reading around last night on a bunch of forums about combo rifle/shotguns, and one interesting thought was that as a survival gun, there are a lot of options with the combos.

    For one, you can get a .22LR/12 gauge, which are apparently the two most popular calibers of ammo in the nation, and thus your prospects of being able to continue to get ammo will be good, no matter what hard times ensue. Also, would be cheapest to stock up on.

    The other school of thought was to do as you and I'd like to do, get a 30/30 or .223 and a 12/20 combo. Then, buy some cartridge converters.

    For example, if you had a 30/30 with a 12, and got the following cartridge converters, you'd be fairly set for almost any hunting situation from rabbit/squirrel to bear.

    .22 LR into 30/30
    .223 or 7.62x39 into 30/30
    .410 and .20 gauge into 12 gauge

    If you're like me, you have guns in certain calibers, so you could add whatever cartridge converters fit your armory, i.e. 9mm, 357, etc.

    I'm like you, Zach. I find a 20 a whole lot more pleasureable to shoot from the shoulder than a 12. Meat gun, I like that.

  3. EAA distributes the Baikal IZH94 which, depending on which web site you look at, is reasonably priced or it's not. They also make a dandy poor man's double rifle in .30-06 with two barrels for about $600. Sure enough, reviews say finish quality is not there with these guns but many hold their shooting functions in high regard. This may be the way to go for a cheap double rifle or shotgun/rifle combo, particularly if you could get one used for $250 or so.

  4. I woulg like to know did tenite or wood come first with stevens 22-410 mine is wood