A Little Bang For The Buck by Lyndon Combs
I haven’t done much small game hunting in the past few years, but I am going to this coming season. Feeling a little nostalgic lately after coming to the realization that it is coming up on the twenty year mark since I started hunting in the 80’s, and the realization after a couple of car wrecks that it is getting harder to pack the larger pumps, and semi automatics to hunt the little critters of the woods. I like them and they are good guns, but I want something a little more simple, and easy to pack. I also didn’t want to break the bank to relive my younger days.
This brings me to the subject of this article the new little New England Arms .410 gauge Pardner single shot shotgun in my gun cabinet. When I decided to pick up a new gun, and I knew the budget was very anemic to say the least. I turned to Americas plague of low prices Wally World (for those up north this is Wal-Mart) to see what they had in stock to fit my needs. I also knew I would be looking for a single shot shotgun, I mean lets face it ain’t nothin on the market under $200.00 that shoots more than one shot.
They had two brands in stock. Rossi, and New England. The Rossi had a nice synthetic stock and an extra barrel, but the metal work looked bad, and the price was over the budget requirements. Then I looked over the other brand. I was surprised at the quality of this gun. I mean it is only a $100.00 gun, but it was a nice one. The wood, and the fit was good only one place was a little off, but it is no big deal.
The finish was very nice. I loved the location of the release lever it is right next to the hammer, and the gun even had a transfer bar to keep the hammer from hitting the firing pin if I dropped the gun. Really nice, so I made my decision. I took the NEF. I filled out the paper work, picked up two boxes of Winchester Super Speed Xtra game loads, and waited for someone to walk me out with the gun. When I got to my car I loaded up as fast as I could and hauled A** out of the parking lot. I couldn’t wait to get to the range to see how well this gun patterned. I was just gonna have some fun, and what fun it was because I got to test the gun out on game sooner than I ever thought I would.
Just as I pulled up and was getting out of my van a big Crow plopped it’s butt on a limb not far from my van. I thumbed the release lever, and slid a shell in the chamber. I closed the action as I brought the little shotgun to my shoulder, bam , dead Crow. One shot splat!!! It was on the ground. Nice!!! I dislike Crows. They tell on me as I walk through the woods scaring the other animals. They are my arch enemy in the woods.
I next set out to see if I could get me another Crow (cause you know where there is one another is not far, like roaches) with my little shotgun. I set back in the bushes not far from where I got the first Crow, and did some calling. Before I knew it here flew in another flying cock roach. I brought the gun to my shoulder, and put the bead just in front of the Crows beak waiting for it to get in close enough for the .410 to do it’s job. Bam!!! It started going down. I thumbed the release lever and had another shell in the gun. The Crow was on the ground moving slightly, bam, it was dead. I thumbed the release lever, and the empty flew past my head. I set up for more flying cock roaches, and remembered the first shotgun I ever owned and the fun of shooting it. It seemed like nothing in the world was as much a concern as the can I was about to ventilate with the little gun, a .410 single shot.
No worries just shooting. Everything seems a little simpler with a single shot. I guess that was what I wanted to get back to basics, and simple fun. This little gun has helped with that. As you can see I was very happy with my new little shotgun, and I felt like a kid shooting for the first time. I like how simple little guns like this one can bring back a lot of memories and the pleasure to shooting, and hunting. I think just about everyone has started with an old single shot, and many can understand what I am saying.
I have had the shotgun out many more times since the Crow smackin’ first shots, and I think I will have many more moments in the field with this little gun. It is a good little gun that didn’t cost an arm, and a leg. Just the right amount of bang for the buck. In the pictures you will notice that the butt plate has H&R on it. Well you see H&R owns NEF, and they both are owned my Marlin. No wonder the gun is made well. I am not the biggest lover of Marlins, but they make a good gun. This little gun is well worth the $100.00 I spent on it. Well enough of this writing I am going to smack some Crows. I hate them flying cock roaches.