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I was looking at a saiga 410 shotgun to use as a slug gun what do you think?? Can the 410 do it on deer close range? I'm thinking of scoping it too. Its light, semi-auto built on the AK47 design so its reliable and dependable and the $229 price tag looks affordable too. There sold out of 12's & 20's already. I have 12's but no semi-auto's. BigBill

I finally got a deer permit in my home state(lottery sucks)
 

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I guess I better stay with my old 12ga? I'll just put a larger recoil pad on it. BigBill
 

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Care to explain why the nswer is "NO"?

I had the impression that 410 slugs were more powerful than generally given credit for, with power approaching that of a 44 Rem Mag, or at least as much as a 357. Nothing fancy, but certainly acceptable for east coast whitetail. I have the same Saiga 410 and have been debating doing a caliber conversion.
 

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The power is not even close to a .44 magnum. The little .410 slugs are pure lead and weigh less than 100 grains. Lack of penetration and poor accuracy from a smoothbore make it a bad choice for deer.
 

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Bill, if you have not done so, check the state regs on min caliber/bores for deer. A number of states do not permit the use of 410 slugs during deer season.
 

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Why are there .410's?

I shot my first .410 shotgun yesterday, using #6 shot at 30 yards on a turkey head pattern target, using a bench. It was an old Mossberg bolt action. It was sweet to shoot, low recoil.

But, it was hard pressed to get enough pellets into the kill zone, and the guy I borrowed it from said he used a .410 on a deer and he had to shoot it several times, 3-4, before the animal died.

Why does this cartridge exist? I normally use a .12 gauge in my trap and hunting needs, it works fine. But, what is the history of why the .410 came into being, was it to shoot sparrows at close range, or other?

Thanks.
 

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The .410 was developed from earlier 44-40 birdshot charges. The 44-40 shotguns were made for ladies and boys back around the turn of the century to shoot grouse and rabbits with. The .44-40 was by no means a long range shotgun, but it was just enough gun to take small game and get people shooting and not afraid of recoil. Some time in the 20's I believe they came up with the 2.5 inch .410 bore which carried a little more shot, and later on the 3 inch magnum.

The thing about the .410 is that it is certainly enough gun for such game as grouse and rabbits in the eastern woods. It won't take ducks like a 12 or pheasants like a 20, but it is the smallest, lightest, easiest to carry of all of them. The only thing is that you have to pattern the .410 and practice with it to be effective, and at $8 per box that isn't always practical.

My personal fascination with the .410 comes from the fact that the Marbles Game Getter was chambered in .410. Well, actually the 1908 model came in 44-40 smoothbore with a .22LR barrel on top. The 20's version came with a .410 barrel under a .22 LR. The game getter was a folding stock pistol like firearm made to be the ultimate do-all firearm. I like the game getter, and i think the .410 is enough gun for many types of shooting.

The .410 slug loading used to be a .395 roundball, under bore size to fit through tight chokes. A 1/5 ounce foster slug is now the standard load. The slug is supposed to travel around 1850fps. This makes 650 some foot pounds at the muzzle but drops down to around 330 foot pounds at 50 yards. Shooting any large game beyond about 40 yards probably wouldn't be too good unless you were a perfect shot, and that might be difficult if your gun didn't like slugs. My old Wards .410 would throw slugs into a 2 inch group at 25 yards. I never worked up the skills to try hunting with it.
 

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If you respect the deer as worthy prey use at least a 20ga. If you don't respect them then use the .410, but don't be surprised if you lose respect of others in doing so.
 

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dave375hh said:
If you respect the deer as worthy prey use at least a 20ga. If you don't respect them then use the .410, but don't be surprised if you lose respect of others in doing so.
Well said!
 

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.410 hmmm. I remember bringing one to our dump to shoot vermin. I shot my first rabbit with one,a beautiful Fox DBL. but it was close and I was 10 I think. I also can remember bringing it later on in life for rabbits and shot five times and got nothing and I am a pretty good shot. I think for vermin and small varmits that are rat size it is a great caliber. The slugs shoulf be OK for bigger varmits such as woodchucks or such. If you care about clean kills and being a true sportsman leave it home for deer hunting!
 

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i killed my first deer with a 410 and slug when i was about 9 the deer was shot in the neck and fell over dead as soon as i shot it. i would use it just as happily as my pistol or rifle on deer.
 

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I used the 410 when I was a kid on Rabbits, Hares & Foxes, I even shot a few dozen big Goats with it and they’re about the size of a White tail deer. (from what I can tell)
However it is far from the best option and I didn’t use factory rounds, I made rounds from a 303brit case blown out to be a strait walled 2.5” case.
I would load with about 20gr of fast rifle powder, place in a wad and then load it with 3 roughly 40-44cal round balls and lightly crimp the end, this load will Knock a 50-80kg Goat dead on the spot out to about 40m maximum.

If I were hunting Deer as a trophy rather then Goats as a pest then I would have used a 12ga as far as shotguns go. The 410 never left much room for error and I would never use a 410-factory slug on game, I have tried the 85gr Winchester foster slugs and I really don’t like them or their performance. The Buckshot load was a much better performer with about 3 times as much weight and they were about the same speed.
 

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My fondness for the 410 comes from the first real gun I ever owned as a kid, which was a savage model 25 with a 410 on the bottom and a .22 on top. It was a great gun for rabbits and squirrels. Shoot them with the rifle when they sat and with the .410 if they ran. While I still have this gun and use it for squirrels if I was buying one again I would get with a 20 g. on the bottom. Have you priced 410shells lately? Also if you reload, components are more available for 20 G. Would I shoot a deer with a .410, I don’t think so!
RJ
 
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