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I searched for years to replace a gun my parents had. Theirs was a Savage Model 24 with a .22 WMR barrel over a 20 gauge barrel. both barrels are single shot, or course, but in the field you're prepared for what ever game appears.

I finally found one similar, in 30-30 Winchester over 20 gauge. Either combination, and many other versions were made, can take large and small game, although the .22 or .22 WMR would be better for squirrel and such. I have the Ruger 10/22 and a Mossberg 642KS .22 WMR for that.

For survival these are my best choices. There are several other tools in the cabinet, too.
 

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I guess I'd go with my Mossberg 500 20 gauge with Hogue Tamer pistol grip and 18.5"barrel. If I want to go hunting, I can reinstall the regular stock and put on the 26" barrel. With the Hogue Tamer pistol grip, it's very comfortable in 20 gauge vs 12 gauge set-up the same way.
 

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I switched from 870 to Benelli M2, in 2016. My pumping hand/wrist/shoulder had not aged well. The Comfort-Tech stock made ALL the difference, compared to my prior HK/Benelli M1 Super 90, in the Nineties. (Well, actually, I still have my 870P, but I removed the stock, and installed a Pachmayr rubber Vindicator grip. I keep it loaded with low-recoil buck.)

I have seen it written, by credible folks who use them in competition, that the Beretta 1301 has quite mild recoil, such that it is better than a 20 gauge weapon, for recoil-sensitive shooters.
 

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I don't if this has been mentioned, but if this is for HD, there might be a good chance it would be used during the night with an intruder already inside the home. You might want some ear protection if used inside a building, especially if it's a 12 gauge.
This is a really valid point. I keep a set of the Howard Leight earphones in my nightstand. Since they have the electronic microphones, not only does it protect my hearing were I to actually fire any of my HD guns, but they also enhance my hearing once I turn them on. If you're going to spend the money for a good HD setup, $50 for a set of these is a worthwhile addition to consider as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #65
LasVegasLights - Your avatar reminds me of a patch worn by a fellow soldier in the army, back in 1971. Not sure if it's the same unit he was in during his tour in Vietnam, but it sure looks familiar. He had definitely been in some serious fighting and was extolling the virtues of a new 'super' grenade that was round instead of oblong, like the ones I trained with at Fort Lewis in 1970.

Where I was stationed, outside Edgewood Arsenal, MD at a Nike Hercules air defense missile site, we got a lot of Vietnam vets who finished their tours with more than five months remaining on active duty … so the army, in its wisdom, would try to assign these men to bases near their homes. Can't recall where Chuck was from, but it must have been fairly close. He became one of our security NCOs because he was an E-5 and I was a lowly E-4 when I ETS'd in November, 1971.
 

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My best effort at having a "best all-around" shotgun is a Remington Model 11 12 gauge, still in factory guise. It's a good dependable John Browning design. Is semi-automatic so allows one-handed operation if required in an emergency. Has a modified barrel that throws great patterns in the game fields. Has an original factory fitted and serial numbered second full choke barrel for those occasions when more reach is called for. Has a wide open 18-inch barrel I keep on hand in case things need to be "hosed off."
 

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LasVegasLights - Your avatar reminds me of a patch worn by a fellow soldier in the army, back in 1971. Not sure if it's the same unit he was in during his tour in Vietnam, but it sure looks familiar. He had definitely been in some serious fighting and was extolling the virtues of a new 'super' grenade that was round instead of oblong, like the ones I trained with at Fort Lewis in 1970.

Where I was stationed, outside Edgewood Arsenal, MD at a Nike Hercules air defense missile site, we got a lot of Vietnam vets who finished their tours with more than five months remaining on active duty … so the army, in its wisdom, would try to assign these men to bases near their homes. Can't recall where Chuck was from, but it must have been fairly close. He became one of our security NCOs because he was an E-5 and I was a lowly E-4 when I ETS'd in November, 1971.
The patch is for the 173rd Airborne Brigade. It's an independent combat brigade that isn't assigned to any specific Division, and reports directly up to the Corps level (now I believe directly to USAREUR). They were stationed in Okinawa before the Vietnam war and were the first combat Brigade into Vietnam (sometime in 1965). The brigade made the only combat airborne drop of Vietnam (Operation Junction City). The Brigade certainly saw a ton of action. Troopers from the Brigade received 13 Medals of Honor - a totally ridiculous number. They were in country until sometime in 1971 when it redeployed to Fort Campbell. The Brigade was absorbed into the 101st Airborne Division around 1972 and re-established the 3rd Brigade (which had been totally fractured from backfilling replacements for a half-decade to the war zone). The colors were cased and the units were all eventually reflagged. In fact, most of the current 187th Rakkasans units are directly descended from the 173rd troopers that came home from Vietnam. They've just changed the unit designations over the years (I was also in the 101st, and found this very interesting).

Since World War II we've maintained a small Airborne Infantry presence in northern Italy in the town of Vicenza. With the rise of Brigade-centric operations in the late 90s, they decided to bring back some of the independents. They expanded the footprint in Italy and uncased the 173rd Airborne back into service in 2000. The unit was involved in the Invasion of Iraq in 2003, conducting an airborne jump from their base in Italy directly into Northern Iraq (Operation Northern Delay). Afterwards, the unit was repeatedly deployed to Afghanistan and was the most deployed Brigade in the Army for a long while. If you've seen the documentary "Restrepo," that's one of the 173rd's infantry battalions during one of the earlier Afghan deployments.

I joined the Brigade after they got back from Iraq and did a few exotic vacations to Afghanistan with them.

PS: If you haven't noticed, I love history. And I always made a point to learn my unit history. This was made easy with such interesting and historic units.
 
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