Hand-me-down guns

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Hand-me-down guns

Postby kellory » Mon Oct 03, 2011 7:34 pm

I always hear guys all exited about the newest, greatest gun to hit the market. Guns untried, virgin and unblooded, pristine and perfect in every detail, and I got to wonder what all the fuss is about. I have only purchased one new long gun and one revolver ( for a different kind of job,) in my whole life. It seems to me that guns carry the scars and their traditions from one generation to the next, to the next. My father started with a single shot 12ga, at a very early age, walking the fields with his dad also armed with a single shot 12ga. Get him talking about hunting, and to this day he will talk of his father downing 4 quail with two shots, reloading as he spun, and catching both pair in front and behind! They hunted or they didn't eat. Grandpa's guns are divided among his children now, to pass on when another hunter comes of age. My father spent his first paycheck to buy his father a new shotgun. It was a 12ga. Mossberg 3 shot bolt action with a clip and a polychoke, It was a prized possession for many years, both because of what it was (a fine weapon) and where it came from. That gun now rests in my hands, and it is the best small game/ bird gun I have ever had the pleasure to fire. It now has a lineage and a history to pass on to my son, a second year hunter, first year deer hunter( if the girls will leave him alone long enough ;) ) Or he may prefer the Sterlingworth sideXside 12ga. 100years old, and still ready and eager to take to the fields and the woods. These two old timers are joined by the youngster of the group,(only around 30 years) Savage 22/.410ga. over and under, and this is the first gun we All learned as children to hunt with. Legal here in Ohio for anything from deer down to squirrels, and much prized by all members of the family male and female, because this is where our hunting memories started, walking the fields with my father, and later with my sister and brother. That gun is now in the hands of my nephew as he learns what it is to be a hunter with his father(my brother) and his younger brother is envious though to small to carry it yet. New guns are fine I'm sure, but for me and mine, it's the old guns that carry the traditions and the scars, and the lore . Hand-me-down guns are forged links of shared memories and family connections. To carry my Grandfather's gun, as he did, matters more to me than some bones on the wall ever could.
The only real difference between a good tracker and a bad tracker is observation. All the same data is present for both. The rest is understanding what you are seeing.

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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby Joel Spring » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:35 am

Great post.
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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby justincasei812 » Thu Oct 27, 2011 11:55 am

My first time out hunting was with my grandfathers single shot 410. It had been passed down to my dad and now that he has passed I have it. I must say it has seen some better days but with a little work it will look and work as good as new again. After the season has passed it will be going to a gun smith for re-bluing and some attention to detail. This was a great post and brought back some very good memories.

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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby gatodoc » Mon Jan 30, 2012 10:03 pm

I got invited on a deer hunt this past December in west TN. The only gun I had was an old rifle my grandfather had purchased in the fifties. I remember him taking it on hunts for deer, bear and boar so I assumed it would do the job. I'd done a lot of rabbit hunting with him as a kid, but never deer.

One of my buds is a gun nut and he helped me site it in. The scope was a K-Mart brand. I remember when Papaw bought it back in the seventies. He was in his 70's and his eyes were failing a little for the iron sights. Before he bought the scope he always told me" the gun shoots where you point it". My bud got it sighted in for me with a 1 inch pattern at 100 yards and he said that was good enough, but he didn't seem too thrilled with the scope quality. I was shooting 150 grain bullets that were 30 plus years old, but they fired.

After 2 shifts in a 16 foot tri-pod stand I was tired of deer hunting and was running my cell phone down playing angry birds (silenced). I looked behind me and there stood a buck (6 pointer). I tried to remember what papaw had told me about shooting. I put the gun on the rest, took and deep breath, slowly exhaled and aimed just behind the shoulder. I squeezed the trigger so slowly, I was actually surprised when It fired. I think that's how papaw had told me to do it.

The buck stood there for a few seconds with a shocked look on his face, then turned and ran 10 yards behind some trees. My hosts had told me that if I shot one I should wait 30 minutes to check it so it would lay down undisturbed and die. Longest 30 minutes of my life. Just as I was about to climb down 6 more deer walked into the field a good way out. I did the same technique on the biggest doe in the bunch and she just keeled over. My host picked me up and we collected them. First was a 6 point buck at 110 yrs and the second a big doe at 167 yards by his laser site. He couldn't believe it was my first effort. I told him I must have had an angel in my pocket, then this sixty year old grown man teared up. Papaw would have been proud of his grandson and his old Savage Model 99 300 cal.

The season's over, but I've probably spent a thousand bucks on clothes, books, descent, calls, and stands. I'm officially hooked on deer hunting but I'll keep that old savage rifle with the new Nikon Scope I just bought for it. I think Papaw would be OK with it. My eyes aren't what the used to be either.
Last edited by gatodoc on Wed Feb 01, 2012 7:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby Ohio farms » Tue Jan 31, 2012 12:36 pm

Nice story gatodoc, as they all have been. I'm sure that many of us have a long lost loved one who instilled in us the love of the outdoors. Hope you enjoy your time on the site. Sparks can fly at times, but overall, time spent here is not only informative, but enjoyable.
Keep life simple...if you hear hoofbeats, think horses, not zebras.

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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby Cut N Run » Fri Aug 31, 2012 5:59 am

I'm looking forward to taking deer with my grandfather's .30-30 Model 94 Winchester this year. It was built in the 1950s and was the first gun I ever shot. I remember shooting at bottle caps at the base of a dirt embankment along the railroad tracks near the river when I was a kid and my grandfather being surprised by how good a shot I was. I don't know how many deer he took with that rifle over the years, but I am ready to have it start another chapter in the woods. I'm sure I will think a lot about him when I have a lot of time to study that rifle in the stand.

During rifle season I usually hunt with a Winchester Model 70 Featherweight in .308 & have used the same gun since I bought it new in 1981. No telling how many deer I've taken with that rifle, but it has been a lot. I bought a matching one in .30/'06 that I put an identical scope on just to have a matching pair. One day when I can no longer hunt, I'll leave one to each of my nephews and hope those guns get to spend as much time and have as much success in the woods as I've had with them.

As nice as it is to break in a new rifle, there's something to being able to hunt with something that's been there, done that before.

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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby Big Horse » Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:52 pm

Good thread Kellory, I think this song will go just fine here... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYqRbpU1upM

And I might as well add to the stories...

The first hunts I recall we're going to a farm where my dad his father, and a great uncle liked to squirrel hunt. Many years later, that uncle called me over to his house one day. He was nearing 90, and he wanted me to have his Golden 39A. It's still my squirrel gun today and one of the best rifles I own.

Grandpa's aim ws failing him a little, but he still loved to squirrel hunt. I remember dad buying him a Remington 870, . 410 so he could continue to blast squirrels. That gun sits in the gun case next to the Marlin and looks like it just came out of the box. It has now become my sons pheasant and rabbit gun. It's his to keep now, he just doesn't know it yet.

And next to it sits an old single shot .410 that belonged to my moms cousin. She lived in Chicago, and was the first women I ever knew that hunted. She would come down on weekends and go pheasant hunting when I was a kid. we would go to my other granpa's farm and walk ditches and I was the dog. I remember walking out in front of the others trying to flush birds, when a rooster flew up under my feet, and I climbed half way up a small sapling scared half to death to death. She passed this last year and I'm saving that gun for my daughter. It should belong to the lady hunter of the family.

And above the mantel hangs a Stevens Little Scout .22. The blue is worn off, the stocks all scared up, but when I found out my grandfather's first gun as a boy was going to be on his sister's estate sale, I drove across 2 1/2 states and paid twice its value to own it. It aint worth a bunch a money, and it damn sure aint for sale...

Grandaddy's gun http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bbOKHdot ... re=related
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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby Wagguy80 » Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:26 am

I've got 3 hand me down guns. A single barrel 16 gauge with a full choke that kicks like a mule. A JCPenny Enfield .303, and a Rem Gamemaster .270 from way back when they were made with real steel, and wood. The .303 my father chipped in with my grandfather they spent $12 to purchase it and a box of bullets. It's still deadly as ever. Was a prized deer rifle for years until my father purchased the gamemaster. It's been in the gun cabinet since I was a kid.
All nice I never hardly hunt with them though too afraid of damaging them. So I hunt with my beater a new Mossberg ATR .30-06 I can hurt this rifle and not worry. If I hurt one of the others I wouldn't be able to stand myself. Although on occasion I do take out the gamemaster.

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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby 1-GTOHunter » Sun Oct 21, 2012 6:59 pm

I have Deer Hunted for several years with my Dads model 742 Remington Semi-Automatic 30-06 Rifle,we learned to shoot it while sitting on Dads lap with him helping us hold it up while we aimed and shot it,lots of great memories with that Gun and it means the world to me since Dad passing back in 1993.That Rifle is at least 40 years old and still looks nice and shoots great ...I put down a nice 8-Point Buck back in 1995 in Memory of Dad!

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Re: Hand-me-down guns

Postby Scoutfish » Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:50 pm

In my closet sit two very old break action shotguns. They were my father-in-laws.

One he bought for around $25 at Western Auto when he was in his 20's. It is a Sinclair or Singleton. Can't tell myself, but that's what he said it was.

The other one is made by some company with a name that started with the letter "J".

WEll, those guns feel nice and solid, look great and work great. Wooden stocks and fore grips are real wood and feel good.
One has a tiny spot ( about 1/16" ) where the blueing is worn or scratched off.

I love the trigger on each: It pulls just sweet and steady. I have fired many guns where you know exactly when it is going to fire by the way the trigger feels. THese are not like that. As you start squezing the trigger, it pulls nice and smooth and feels so good BLAM!

Going to a local outdoor outfitter, none of the break actions feel as solid or smooth handling.

Instead of blueing, they have a matte black syntheitic finish ( yeah, more practical, I know) and synthetic stock and fore grip.

Push button break instead of the side moving lever.

Yeah...maybe I am just getting older !


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