Survival gun for squirrels n such

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by CATO, Dec 11, 2013.

  1. CATO

    CATO Monkey+++

    American Rifleman - Savage Model 42 Combo Gun

    Savage breathes new life into the classic dual-caliber field piece with this updated .22 Long Rifle/.410 Bore over/under long gun.

    By B. Gil Horman(RSS)

    December 02, 2013

    Introduced to the market in the early 1950s, theSavage ArmsModel 24 series of over/under combo guns were available in several rifle caliber and shotshell combinations. Despite the fact that dual-caliber double-barrel long guns have not been as popular in the United States as they have been in Europe, the Model 24 in its various configurations sold well and remained in production until the late 1980s. Like many other enjoyable and practical firearms, the Model 24 did not garner as much time in the media spotlight as it deserved, but it was (and still is) a much loved field companion for those who purchased them. And so Savage Arms recently revived this platform as the Model 42.

    The Model 42 combo gun features two 20-inch barrels attached to a hinged break-action receiver. The upper barrel is available in a choice of .22 Long Rifle or .22 Mag., while the lower barrel is chambered for 3-inch .410 shotgun shells. Digital calipers confirmed the choke of the lower barrel at .410 inches, making it a cylinder-bore choke instead of the full choke commonly found on fixed-choke .410s. Although the open choke will do for air-borne targets, this choice of choke is more likely to be put to work bagging small game or dispatching pests at close range.

    This rifle/shotgun has a mixed materials construction that includes polymer stocks, steel barrels, steel hardware and a non-ferrous cast mono-block receiver. Instead of casting the polymer forearm into pieces or plates that would have to be held in place with screws, it is molded as a single piece that permanently encases the two blued-steel barrels. The forearm is slim with deep finger grooves on each side and textured patches along the lower edge. The shoulder stock has similar user-friendly features, including a textured pistol grip, a 13.5-inch length-of-pull and a thick, soft-rubber vented buttpad. The touch points on the stocks are sleek and trim. They'll feel comfortable in the hands of small-framed shooters, but they leave plenty of room for larger hands as well.

    The blued-steel barrels sport a satin-blue finish, while the steel trigger, hammer, release lever, sling swivel studs and the various steel bolts that hold it together are treated with a matte-black finish. The polymer front sight is fixed, but the rear sight can be adjusted for windage and elevation. It can also be removed and replaced with a scope mount. A cross-bolt safety located above the molded trigger guard can be engaged to prevent the hammer from striking the firing pins. Internal safeties prevent the action from either opening or closing when the hammer is fully cocked.

    To fire the Model 42, start by verifying that the hammer is in the forward (uncocked) position. The action is opened by depressing the trigger-like release located in front of the trigger guard. One or both barrels can be loaded, and then the action is closed. On top of the hammer is a small, textured lever that is used to switch the hammer from one barrel to the other. Pulling back (toward the operator) switches the hammer to the upper rimfire barrel, while pressing forward (toward the muzzle) returns the hammer to the lower .410 barrel. The hammer is manually cocked for each shot.

    The upper barrel of the gun tested was chambered for .22 Long Rifle, which means it will also accept .22 Long, .22 Short and .22 rimfire shotshells like the CCI Pest Control rounds. The lower barrel accepts both 2½ and 3-inch .410 shotgun shells. After one or both barrels have been discharged, the spent cases are loosened by the polymer extractor to then be manually removed from the chambers.

    At the shooting range, the Model 42 proved to be a handy, reliable and enjoyable gun to shoot. It weighs in at 4 pounds, 11 ounces when unloaded, which should be a manageable, if not downright comfortable, amount of weight for most shooters to manage. Some folks believe that polymer-stocked guns can't be handsome, but this particular combo gun has sleek lines that look good coming out of a case.

    The fit and finish of the Model 42 was excellent, with the hinged action locking up tightly and operating without any wobbles or rough spots. When holding the stock firmly in place at the shoulder with the shooting hand, the action would drop open for reloading with the support hand. The crisp, single-action trigger broke at 5 pounds, 10 ounces of pressure, and the long hammer spur made the hammer comfortable to cock for every shot. The buttpad was a real bonus, grabbing onto the shoulder and effectively keeping recoil to a bare minimum. Some of the heavy .410 shells, such as the 3-inch, five-pellet 000 buckshot and PDX1 mixed payload rounds from Winchester, generate a level of felt recoil on par with light 20-gauge shotshells. This may not be a concern to the experienced operators, but it’s a nice touch for recoil-sensitive or new shooters.

    The formal accuracy testing for the .22 Long Rifle barrel was conducted from a benchrest, using the iron sights, by firing five, five-shot groups into targets set at 25 yards. The best single group of 1.01 inches was produced usingFederal'sAmerican Eagle 38-grain copper-plated hollow points (CPHP). This load also produced the best five group average of 1.33 inches, followed by theCCIVelocitor 40-grain CPHP at 1.45 inches, and theWinchesterDynapoint 40-grain CPHP at 1.46 inches.
    The performance of the cylinder-bore .410 shotshell barrel was checked by firing single rounds into targets set at 7 yards. The tightest birdshot pattern of 7.25 inches was produced by a Federal 2½-inch shell loaded with No. 4 lead shot, followed by the Winchester 2½-inch Super X No. 7 ½ at 9.5 inches and the Winchester AA 2½-inch No. 9 at 11 inches. The Federal Premium 3-inch, five-pellet 000 buckshot round produced a tight 1.25-inch pattern at 7 yards.

    In choosing to revive the Model 24 with the release of the up-to-date Model 42, Savage has done a terrific job of honoring the original intent of the dual-caliber double barrel while successfully bringing the design in line with modern manufacturing techniques and materials. This combo gun is ideal for a variety of uses including small-game hunting, as a garden gun, camp gun, survival gun or all-around plinker. It’s light, reliable, flexible and fun to shoot. Savage Arms deserves kudos, not only for breathing new life into an old idea, but for producing a well-built gun that can be enjoyed and relied upon for years to come.

    Manufacturer:Savage Arms;
    Action:Break-action over/under
    Caliber:.22 Long Rifle/.410 shotshell
    Barrels:Matte-black carbon steel
    Stock:Black polymer
    Front Sight:Fixed polymer
    Rear Sight:Adjustable polymer
    Trigger Pull:5 lbs., 10 ozs.
    Barrel Length:20”
    Overall Length:35.75”
    Length of Pull:13.5”
    Weight:4 lbs. 11 ozs.
    Capacity:1 round .22, 1 round .410
    .22 LR Twist:1:16” RH
    .22 LR Grooves:6
    .410 Choke:Improved cylinder, fixed
    Accessories:Lock, owner’s manual
    Suggested Retail Price:$480
    Yard Dart, kellory and stg58 like this.
  2. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey

    A .22/410 was the first firearm I was "allowed" to hunt with growing up..
    Brokor likes this.
  3. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey

    Would be an exellant firearm for the difficult times. Out looking for rabbits and kick up a ruff grouse of a pheasant. Dinner in the pot!
    stg58 likes this.
  4. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member



    That Savage over/under looks pretty decent. I personally do not like the synthetic, molded design, but in times when it's tough to find a solid survival rifle, it might just have to do. I love over-under rifles. I am sure none of you will ever forget the M6 Scout, possibly the very best survival rifle ever built:

    With demands so high for a TRULY break down, stowable, rugged and dependable .22/.410 arrangement, even the venerable Ruger with its breakdown has had incredible sales, barely keeping any on the shelves...even with their (slightly) ridiculous price. Now, obviously the Ruger Takedown is a .22LR only rifle, but it is stowable and rugged. The thing we WANT more than ANYTHING is light weight, portability, and ruggedness rolled into an accurate platform. It would also be nice to have mounts for modern optics, too...but that's negotiable. PERIOD. Seriously, that's IT. No matter what brand of rifle it is, and I can think of a few, a survival/stowable type is made in limited batches and then discontinued. Why? Is it political pressure? It sure as heck isn't the sales.

    Look what happened with the KelTec Sub 2000. Maybe the early releases weren't the best, but the last runs were bought out. Try finding one these days. That's just a pistol cartridge carbine, and plenty of folks don't even like using them. The fact is, in America it's considered "taboo" to have concealable firearms, especially rifles. Withstanding the BATFE retardation and all the laws (illegal and unconstitutional or not) pertaining to barrel length and stocks, then state and local ordinances and hunting restrictions and policies, a simple survival rifle should NOT be difficult to design and produce in .22LR. We want rugged, light, stowability, portability and accuracy.

    We need to stop having yuppies run these gun companies, and maybe if we are lucky, an actual prepper with military experience may one day make the decisions and get a few great rifles and carbines out there on the market to allow for healthy competition and free market capitalism. (LOL?) Maybe it's just too difficult for gun companies to understand the market. We have hundreds of varieties of 1911 handguns and practically every company must have a hunting gimmick to exploit, or some "tactical" edge, but we rarely see a truly rugged, dependable rifle in stowable, portable configuration. There are so many brands and gimmicks for the AR platform, it's downright ridiculous as well as daunting, even for the avid sportsman. Nope, not a single survival rifle being mass produced. Is it really considered just a "specialized market", or am I imagining things when we can't even find a good survival rifle on the shelves? A sign that I may be right is to visit any local gun shop and on the shelf should be one or two survival rifles --but there most likely won't be. It's not because nobody is buying them, is it?

    Marlin Papoose: Very good takedown .22 *availability* Not easy to find, rumored to still be manufactured.
    Henry Survival Rifle: It's an adequate plinker, but not rugged enough, and manufacturing could be better. *availability* Can still be ordered.
    M6 Scout: LOL good luck finding one in .22/.410
    stg58 and Yard Dart like this.
  5. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    My father has the model 24 in. 22/.410. It the gun I learned to hunt with, and he will not sell it. I was not aware of the model number change, but have watching this product.
    (Note) the other calibers are still available, but this size was discontinued, many years ago, and a cult following has arisen about this gun. There are forums about this weapon, and how to repair them. They are very popular guns. Next gun I buy will likely be this one.
    stg58 likes this.
  6. whynot

    whynot Monkey+++

    I have a late model 24 in 22lr over 20 gauge. Synthetic and blued on a 12 gauge size frame. Nice gun but heavy. The new "thing" they are making is fugly. That being said if they came out with one in 357 over 20 or 12 I would buy one.

  7. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    They do. It is listed above.
  8. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey

    357 would not good camp meat make...
  9. Byte

    Byte Monkey+++

    Found an M6 .22lr/.410 at one of the local pawn shops today. They're asking $675. I laughed. The guy at the other end of the counter didn't think it was very funny.

    I would like a Model 24 in .22lr/20ga from the 60's/70's but I just never see one available near me.
    kellory likes this.
  10. EtDub

    EtDub Monkey

    My dad said he wouldn't trade his 222 Remington / 20 gauge for anything.

    Sent from my MiPhone !
    Yard Dart, BTPost and kellory like this.
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