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David E. Petzal Reviews the Mossberg 4x4 Bolt-Action Rifle

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May 04, 2010

David E. Petzal Reviews the Mossberg 4x4 Bolt-Action Rifle

By David E. Petzal

Before we get to the Mossberg, I would like to comment on Phil Bourjaily’s suggestion that my title be changed from “Field Editor” to “Killing Editor” on the grounds of my extreme deadliness with a rifle, and generally bloodthirsty world view. Not only am I not offended, but I think it’s a good idea. What the hell is a “field” editor, anyway? It sounds like I work for a farm journal. “Killing Editor” gets down to cases, and I would be thrilled to see this on my business cards. If the folks at F&S have the guts…

Anyway, I asked Lisa Baker, Mossberg’s head of PR, why they called it the 4x4, and she said to give the impression of something tough and useful, intended for the world of hard knocks. They got that right. The 4x4 is a using bolt-action that comes with a choice of synthetic, walnut, or laminated stocks, in .25/06 to .338, plus a couple of short magnums. It has an effective muzzle brake, an honest-to-god recoil pad, and a very good trigger that is set at 2 ½ pounds.

Its stock lines are ... unique. But the barreled action is highly conventional, which is to say it works. I tested the walnut-stocked 4x4 in .270 WSM and because I got it on short notice and didn’t have any factory ammo in that caliber on hand, I shot it with 130-grain Swift Scirocco and 150-grain Hornady Interbond handloads. The average for both was .95-inch, which is very good, and for the hell of it, I fired a 10-shot group that was one big ragged hole, which is very, very good.

Weight, with scope, was 8 pounds even. The rifle feeds out of a detachable magazine which gave no problems, even with the contrary short magnum cases. At its MSRP of $631, the 4x4 is overpriced, but in the real world you can get it for $450, which is right on the money. For that amount, you get a very accurate, good-handling working gun that you don’t have to baby. And as for the stock lines, as Elmer Keith said, “Chacun a son gout.”*

*”Everyone to his own taste.” Ol’ Elmer spoke beautiful French, which was not surprising as he held a doctorate from the Sorbonne.

Comments (83)

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from Douglas wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Mossberg has a history of producing durable working people arms. Any idea when we can get our grubby hands on one to check it out?
Glad to see this company is still in production. I hope its made in the USA.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mjenkins1 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I wish they would have just left somewhat "traditional" stock lines on it instead of this "radical" sort of design. Either way, I'm a fan of Mossberg.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from yohan wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Yup,. never fails,. market ( economic ) forces are still the mothers of invention~~~
Tough economy prodces ( dare we admit ) that which approaches and in many cases now exceeds the performance of the standard "first string " production brands.
Could it possibly be? ,. that the "second stringers"
like Mossberg,Marlin,and Savage ( of course) serve to reduce value on the upper end prodcution guns?
by exceeding their performance?

Only time will tell, but having recently picked up an xl7 I can now attest to a pervious notion which is.
That dam thing is a shooter. Nevr would have believed it
magazine article or not.
Five shots in 1/1/4 iches at 100 yds and that was with the low end scope that came with it.!!
Its light so 180 gr pills over time will get your attention ,..
Still never having shot 5 times at any one animal ( for over 40 years anyway ) ,.. not gonna let ecoil bother me.
Truthfully I am now considering moving one of my pet Mausers into back up position on an upcoming trip to
"hunt da moose ya".

Moreover it is beginning to looks like $500 +/- will get it done,.. which is great news for entry level shooters.

And some of us who have been looking down our noses ( me for instance) at the second stringers,. for low these many years. May be eating some crow ,. like I recently had to do. But hey ,.a little crow hear and there never hurt anyone. Right ?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Sounds like a nice rifle but that stock is a no go for me. My ER Shaw rifle is due this month.
On the other hand the Kansas turkeys were giving it their best this morning. Seven Birds were gobbling in different directions. Three of them had lust in their heart when they came strutting over the ridge looking for love only to find a load of #6 HD shot. Pics are posted.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

"The stock lines are...unique" C'mon Dave, if you want to be called "killing editor" and want to be believable you can't hold your fire on that stock like you did. And you call the Savage 110 ugly!! Maybe you're just being politically correct about their rifle so you don't have to be about their shotguns(which in itself is disturbing!). Personally I like the stock, it looks like it means business and being a Mossberg product I'm sure it handles and functions like an American made firearm should. Reliable and affordable.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Nice seeing Mossberg putting out a fine-shooting well-priced gun. Pity seeing a piece of walnut wearing such a plastic stock design.

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from npdion wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Do I detect a little Ed Zern creeping in?

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from duckcreekdick wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I would bet that crusty old Idaho cowboy would have a few words to say about the stock design and they wouldn't be in French.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mark-1 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

As "Killing Editor", DP, I hope you don't "harvest" deer, elk, sheep, pronghorn, etc.

God, I hate that "harvesting" reference!!!!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from pbshooter1217 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Looks sort of futuristic.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckbull wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Never been a big fan of mossturds and this rifle will not change my mind. There are better choices for the money, weatherby vanguard and marlin xl7 just to name 2.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I dont know bout the 4x4.. seen it taken appart and the action itself looks rather flimsy.. seen more metal on the bottompart (that u dont see on the outside) on severe ultralightweights. and id have to plan alot be4 i dared attempt to freefloat the barrel and bed the dang thing.. Witch i see as an absolute requirement for all my guns (i dont hold to the american way of making the stock stiffen up the barrel, cos i dont expect my gun to give me 3 shot groupings but 20 shots in the same hole) Id rather go with the howa in this pricerange any day. tried and true mechanism that in many aspects is an improvement of the 700 remington.
But hey i see the 4x4 as a much better approach to cheap knockabout guns than the remington 770`s :P
Its just i demand more of my gun than i am ever able to use in field. And savages r really ugly in my wiev. (dont burn me all u savage owners, cos i actually have considered a 112 low profile in 22-250 just cos it offers better rifle twist..) I just have to get my next gun customized i guess.. and for a really cheap gun id rather take a weatherby synthetic any day. atleast u can improove the trigger alot with replacement parts or trigger and a good stock on it will make it into a real shooter.. alot better calibre choices too and theire purdy in a bell and carson stock :) mechanically similar to the howa too so u know u get a good strong action for it that has potential even for making a serious benchrestgun out of..
peace

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Gritz wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

The stock looks like a mutt between the semi auto Winchester front end and a back end from who knows where. I would think that it would be a little unbalanced for carrying but would be happy to test one out in the field just to make sure if they wanted to send me a free one. I have seen a lot of ugly cars come out in the last decade too but to them I say the same, I would drive/shoot it if someone gave me one. Would I put my own money down on one? Probably not without a test drive.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Field editor sounds a lot like a fieldmarshal. Killing editor could be the name of an action packed movie thriller. Come to think of it Petzal has surperbly acted in some better than ordinary educational videos (I'm still waiting on the one regarding breaking 2 year old mule colts for mountain hunting use and feel certain that it is in process. I'm hope I'm not being an a$$ about mentioning the delay).
The Mossberg is difficult to criticize given its performance although a hands on examination will be necessary prior to drawing final conclusions. Price is decent.
Keith, Sorbonne?? I somehow always assumed that his bachelors, masters, and doctorate were obtained mainly at the Oasis, the Mint, and the Buckhorn as well as being the locations of his most vivid and dramatic verbal post-grad presentations. Actually I miss the ole boy as he never failed to provide entertainment along with some education gained from experience. Great storyteller. RIP Elmer.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from SL wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I doubt Keith had any sort of college degree. The highest degree any gun writer has ever earned is a B.S, and don't mistake that for a "bachelor of science" either.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from yohan wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Jim in MO

slightky off topic so wont stay long,.
Got it my head to consider 26' tube for 6.5x55
any experiance with that ?

Thanks ?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from libertyfirst wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

That rifle may shoot pretty well but the stock is truly butt ugly.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

They make this same rifle with traditional looking stocks. Still not sure if I'd buy one.

I am considering their 464 lever gun so I don't have to beat on my '94. Think that thing is as good or better than this one?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

and to our killing editor how bout a gunrewiev about something really new, not just rehashing of old concepts, refinements and exclusives?? check out http://innogun.com/
How bout a rewiev of those?? :):):)

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Yohan the 6,5x55 is very much used as a competition gun here cos its a soft shooter. and long thick barrels on it is the rule of thumb and can be reccomended ;)

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from davidpetzal wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

To NP dion: Little Ed Zern creeps in all the time.

To Mark !: "Harvest" is what you do with a John Deere.

To Ishawooa: The mule-breaking project fell through. There was disagreement over my use of "field-expedient motivational devices" that could not be resolved.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Everything we have all Forgotten about Elmer Keith. A good read.
Elmer Keith: 1899-1984

By John Taffin

An era has passed. Elmer Keith, the Grand Old Man is dead. Elmer, who seemed bigger than life, should have died in a gunfight, or have been mauled by a grizzly, or simply rode off into the sunset. Instead, the big Stetson and the Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum were set aside in December of 1981 when he suffered the de-habilitating stroke. His strength showed as he fought the stroke for over two years, passing away on February 12, 1984 in a Boise nursing home.

Elmer was born right at the end of the frontier period on March 8, 1899 in Hardin, Missouri, and consequently knew many Civil War veterans and gunfighters in his early years. In fact, he recounted learning to shoot a handgun from a former gunfighter turned barber, shooting at the patterns in the linoleum in the back of the barber shop.

In 1911, Elmer was burned terribly in a hotel fire in Missoula, Montana, and carried scars for the rest of his life. An ordinary man would have died from the fire. His entire body was covered with burns and his chin was "welded" to his right shoulder with his left hand turned upside down on the back of his left wrist.

Elmer recounted this: "When we moved from Missoula back to Helena I was considerable of a wreck. My left hand was just turned upside down and back on my wrist, just a claw extended from the top of my wrist. I used to wrap a towel around it when Father sent me to school so the girls wouldn’t cringe at the sight of it. The right side of my face was all drawn down towards my shoulder, also. I was a horrible looking sight.

I told Father I had to have a left hand so I could hold a rifle and do normal things. Father contacted every doctor in Helena to try to get them to operate on the hand and break it over and straighten it out. None of them would tackle the job. They all said I would never live to be 21 anyway and they were not going to torture me any further.

Finally, I had had enough of going with only one hand, so I asked Dad if he would break it. Mother said, "Can you stand it?" I said, "I don’t know, but you can go ahead and do it anyway."

So mother got a bunch of cotton bats and gauze, soaked them in melted deer tallow, and had a lot of bandages ready. Father went down to Goodkind’s wholesale liquor store and bought a gallon of Old Granddad, 100 proof, and came home with it.

He said, "Son, do you still want to go through with it?" I said, "I do." I said "Regardless of how much I howl or pass our or whatever, get the job done. I want this hand straight whether I’ll ever be able to use it or not."

After Elmer’s Dad got him good and drunk, Elmer went on the say: "Dad put my arm on a heavy table and sat down on it with my hand between his legs. When he picked up those fingers that were doubled back of my wrist and broke them, the pain was terrific and I passed out. Father took a board he used for stretching mink and sanded it until it was smooth and slick as glass and would reach from my elbow out past my fingers. When I came to, my hand was straight. It was all laced down solid to the mink board."

Elmer’s dad had a dozed buckskin gloves made to fit his left hand, and for the next two years, Elmer wore a glove with melted deer tallow in it and forced himself to use that hand.

"In this way, I finally made a new left hand, but it was a long struggle. At first, I could hold it up to the light and see daylight between the bones right down to the palm of my hand. After a couple of years working with it every time I could and also riding broncs and pulling on the rope with that hand, I finally wound up with a pretty good hand. Even today, it’s a sorry looking hand, but it’s useful, and for a time, I even did two gun demonstrations with sixguns."

Elmer Keith had a tremendous effect on my life. While in high school, I "discovered" him and from reading his writings, I knew I had to move to Idaho. After college, I applied for and received a teaching job in Boise, Idaho, packing up the wife and three kids and headed for "Keith Country."

Two years later, in 1968, I met Elmer for the first time. Driving over to Salmon, we found his house, and with some trepidation, I knocked on the door, and was greeted by Elmer, taken in as though he had known me all his life, and my wife and I spent the day with him and his wife, Lorraine.

As expected, Elmer was packing a 4" Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum, and we spent the looking at guns, big game trophies, and I was generally enthralled. When we left, my thought was "What a grand gentleman."

What really made Elmer special was not his skill with or knowledge of guns, but his commonness. Even though he was to be the most famous gun writer of all, he always had time to talk to the ordinary guy and often answered, personally, without a secretary, 300 to 500 letters per month. His home was always open to visitors. My file contains almost every thing Elmer ever wrote about handguns. Ten years ago after he provided me with a list of all of his articles of sixguns ever published in The American Rifleman, I began collecting them and have everything from 1928 to 1953 clipped and laminated. All I need to complete my collection are the August 15th and September 1, 1925 issues, and the July 1, 1926 issue. If anyone has these, I would surely like to purchase them. Those articles from 1928 to 1953 still make fascinating reading.

A .32-20 Colt SA was the first sixgun Elmer used, soon graduating to the big bores. When he blew the loading gate of a Colt SA .45 using 300 grain bullets and black powder, he made the switch to the .44 Special. Always favoring "sixguns" over autoloaders, his favorites were the Colt Sa, the Smith & Wesson and Ruger .44 Magnums. Much of his experimentation with remodeling the Colt SA was incorporated into Bill Ruger’s Blackhawk line of SA sixguns. Elmer’s influence or direct experimentation may be seen in the development of the trio of sixgun magnums: .357, .41, and .44.

Mention Elmer Keith and a number of things pertaining to handgunning come to mind:

(1) The .44 Magnum – Elmer began experimenting with heavy loads in the .44 Special in the 1920’s and his load of 18.5 gr. of No. 2400 in the old balloon head cases of 17.5 gr. of No. 2400 in modern solid head cases with the 250 gr. Keith bullet is still an excellent load. Just last Saturday, I shot some through a new Smith & Wesson Model 24, 6-1/2" .44 Special, getting 1" groups at 25 yards with velocity over 1200 fps. Hid experiments led to the introductionof the .44 Magnum in 1956 bringing handgunning into the modern era.

(2) The Keith Bullet – The 250 gr. .44 Special bullet was designed in 1926 and became No. 429421 for the Lyman-Ideal Company. Later .38 (No. 358429) and .45 (No. 454421) designs were introduced. Every bullet mould company offers "Keith" Bullets which are semi-wadcutter in design. The closest to his original design is offered by North East Industrial (N.E.I.).

(3) Keith Holster – Catalogued by Lawrence as their No. 120 Keith, this is a modification of the Tom Threepersons design and is offered by every holster maker. Simplicity in itself, just enough leather to cover the sixgun and leave the hammer, butt, and trigger exposed with a heavy safety strap for security.

(4) Long Range Handgunning – Keith was the original advocate of handguns useful for more than short range work and he was ridiculed by detractors for many years. The Silhouetters have proven how right he was.

(5) Handguns for hunting – Again he was ahead of his time, he led the way

During the 1920’s and 1930’s, Elmer was a rancher and big game guide in Oregon and Idaho with his first articles starting to appear at this time. His first published work was in the American Rifleman in 1924, and 60 years later, his works are still being published in Guns and Ammo. In World War II, he served as an inspector at the Ogden Arsenal and went full time as a writer in the ‘50’s. During his career, he served on the staff of The Outdoorsman, The American Rifleman, Western Sportsman, Guns, and Guns and Ammo.

When the Outstanding American handgunner Awards Foundation was established to recognize outstanding contributions to handgunning, it was a foregone conclusion that Elmer would be the first recipient. The original award was given to him in 1973.

Elmer also wrote 10 books, beginning with Sixgun Cartridges and Loads in 1936 and ending with his autobiography, Hell, I was there! In 1979. Two of his books are absolute musts for handgunners, those are his last one, his autobiography, and, of course his Sixguns, first published in 1955.

To some, Elmer Keith was a throwback out of touch with modern times. After all, he’sd choose a .45 Colt SA over a modern DA 9mm, but then anyone who knows handguns and had to bet his life would certainly feel safer with the old .45. I know I would.

Last fall, I had a display at Boise State University for the State Conference of Teachers of Reading and Writing. My display had to do with writing and handguns, with a section devoted to Elmer Keith. Elmer’s son, Ted, heard about it and came to visit me and we talked at length about two things…

One is the plan to offer an Elmer Keith Commemorative. This would be a 4" .44 magnum Smith & Wesson with plainclothes stocks and a few simple inscriptions. Hopefully this will come to pass and will not be like the Colt John Wayne Commemorative ($3000!!). It should be a gun that Elmer’s real fans, the ordinary sigunner, can afford.

The other is the hope of an Elmer Keith Museum in Salmon, Idaho. Contributions for this can be made to Elmer Keith Museum Foundation, Idaho First National Bank, Salmon, Idaho.

(webmaster's note - this article was written in 1984 - the Elmer Keith Museum idea died a long time ago)

We as handgunners owe much to Elmer Keith. As long as there are big bore sixgunners, his spirit will live on. I’ll miss him.

+8 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Now I wonder what Cactus Jack would have to say about that Mossburg .......

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Suggestions for the Killing Editor - Two "what's good for what" posts. One on barrel contours, another on reticles. The latter is the one I'd really like to see, but both would be a good read for most of us.

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from jbird wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Sounds like a good shooter for the money. I'd like to know how it did w/factory loads. I think the stock design would work for synthetic, but it's a little over the top for walnut.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from idduckhntr wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

#1 its a Mossberg, #2 who in the hell desinged the stock? I think I will pass and still buy a Cooper.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

David Petzal: Totally understandable regarding the discontinuation of the "mule video". In fact it appears there similiar training aids are often utilized out behind the barn in Wyoming. PETA never offered any approval of such methods but we don't give a damn anyway.
Kindly pursue more appropriate gun related educational videos in the future for presentation on this blog as the previous ones were truly impressive and I'm not shixxing you.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Is "unique" a Mossturd translation of "fugly"?

No thanks, I'll pass. I could not cuddle up to anything that ugly, much less in front of my friends. It could shoot 0.01 inch groups and it would not change things for me. My safe is a Mossturd Free Zone and will stay that way.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from M1jhartman wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Looking at that picture I don't know that I have ever gazed upon an uglier boomstick.
-Dave-You can have "Killing Editor", call me the "The Hole Maker"

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from NolanOsborne wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Stock is ugly as sin, but you can't expect everything for 400..

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from crm3006 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Petzal as Killing Editor is an idea whose time has come!
As to the rifle? Two things wrong with it. Made by Mossberg, and detachable magazine. My old Remington is as much Ugly as I can stand.
Moishe-
Thanks for the Elmer Keith post. Several things in there I did not know.
yoyo-proud of you son! Two posts without a single yuk yuk and not one political prevarication. Still an idiot, but showing improvement.

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from focusfront wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

moishe;

Thank you for that article about Elmer Keith. I knew a lot about him and knew he had been burned, but never knew the story of his left hand. Explains a lot about Elmer's handgun preferences. A one handed man has a much tougher time using a auto pistol than a revolver. Try loading a pistol magazine, racking the slide, or clearing a jam one handed, and you'll know what I mean.

I always got a kick out of reading Elmer Keith because more than any other gun writer, there was no doubt in Elmer's mind that everything he said was right. And there was absolutely no point in arguing with him, either. He'd seen too much. He knew that big bullets worked because he saw them work, and saw small bullets fail. He never had TSX bullets, though.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Canadian Lurker wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Being a graduate of the Sorbonne Elmère would have used the correct "À chacun son goût".

Some pom sniper is putting his .338 Lapua magnum to good use. 2 hits at 2700 yards is pretty darn good. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/afghanistan/article7113916.e...

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Amflyer wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Dave, in no way can call yourself "the killing editor" unless you have previously shot a man in Reno.

Just to watch him die.

Sorry, that's just the rule.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from hengst wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I am pretty prejudicd against mossberg...Must agreee with WAM ...it could shoot .001 groups and I wouldn't buy it either . Besides that is with the original factory barrel, when that thing gets a case of spontaneous rustbustion I would have to get a new barrell and for the money after that I could have gotten anything other than mossturd

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Jere, Thanks for the post on old Elmer. One of the best times was meeting him at the NRA convention in KCMO back in '79. He was a true gentleman and introduced his wife. The first thing I saw was the big hat, cigar and entourage of followers.
After taking another look at the above photos of herr Dave and Philbert. Dave you just look the part of a killer. Look at those beady eyes staring you down like a rattler. Phil looks like a happy go lucky guy that wouldn't hurt a........turkey apparently.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bernie wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Moishe, that was a great post about Elmer Keith. I have three of his books and admired him.

I owned a Mossberg 342-K .22 rimfire in the early '60s. Damned magazine wouldn't feed right, trigger had to be ten pounds. I never have owned a Mossberg since no matter how the new ones shoot. They are ugly as hell. I have to admit I am a lot like my 92-year-old father who owned a 1937 Ford, a '38 Ford and a 1959 Ford. He didn't like any of them so never would buy another Ford. Buy a Mossberg if you wish. I will pass, thank you.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from djp wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Unless Mossberg has fixed the design of the Raptor/Charter Arms/ATR before they pimped it up and labeled it a 4x4...it's still a self-disassembling pile of junk...but I guess if it's cheap and semi-accurate, who cares if it's the disposable model.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Well. Looks like Mossberg has a lot of PR work to do with my fellow bloggers. Now if Dave was to talk that PR Lisa gal into being a booth babe -- well, I bet most of you guys would be head over heals for Mossberg...

Anyway. I like the looks of that stock just fine. I might just buy one. It'd be a done deal if it was some kind of a new fangled lever action.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from dick mcplenty wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Looks like another Howa 1500.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from blueridge wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

L'editor de mort...

You would be well named. A shooting editor who only hits targets would be an editor of paper targets.

We miss Elmer...how on earth did he get a doctorate from the Sorbonne? Was a .44 magnum involved?

Blue

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from davidpetzal wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

To Shane: Thanks for the ideas. They are good ones.

To Ishawooa: There is a series in the works right now.

To Canadian Lurker: You're absolutely right. I stand corrected.

To Del in KS: Thanks for the kind words. When I got to my basic training company in the Army, we had photos taken for our ID cards. Mine was so scary that someone on the cadre got a copy of it and put it on the bulletin board in the orderly room with a sign underneath that said: "This is the kind of man we want."

To All: Ol' Elmer never got a doctorate from the Sorbonne or anyplace else. I doubt he finished high school. But he could sure tell a story. I just threw that in to see if you were paying attention and to sow the seeds of doubt, mistrust, and confusion. Sort of like an Eric Holder press conference.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from blueridge wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Thanks for clearing that up, Dr. P. I had visions of Elmer putting his .44 mag up against DeGalle's nose, and talking him into a degree.

Vive la .44.

Blue

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clem Snide wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Yes, and Elmer also shot a bull elk at six hundred yards with a four-inch-barreled 44 Magnum piston. Elmer also considered the 30-06 as of marginal utility as a varmint gun. Elmer hunted hummingbirds with a 10 gauge magnum. Elmer was a small man in a big hat. Elmer, Elmer, Elmer...

-4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I got my first bolt gun 'tother day. It ain't a Mossberg, it is a Mauser Karabiner 98. The cost is right, free. This old war horse has Spanish markings and is bored for .308 Win.
I can only surmise that it was sent to help out Franco seventy years ago and the Spaniards converted it to Nato Standard when they joined up. Considering the availability of .762 NATO versus 8mm Mauser, this is a gift. The bore is bright, the bolt works flawlessly, the stock is kinda crunchy but boy do it shoot. No I am not going to "sporterize" it. It is worth more to me as a Karabiner 98 than as anything else. Now I just need to find the right "butchers blade" bayonet!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jeff Bowers wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Love Mossberg shotguns, but never been exceptionally thrilled with their rifles. I have heard they're simple and get the job done, which are my primary requirements.

How about iron sights? Is that another cost-cutting procedure nowadays? I have my Leupold see-throughs on my Remington, and still like to shoot the occasional with them.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Mossberg shotguns keep the gun industry in business. The spare parts, wood stocks, and repairs keep local 'smiths and parts suppliers busy. Not to mention hunters upgrading to good shotguns once the couple thousand round mark is passed.

No offense Jeff4066, but see-through's on a bolt gun should be added to the Bore Snake and Mossberg as things as useless as the U.S. Congress.

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from Ferber wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

"Truth is stranger than fiction". Write that down. It's not only often true...someday that sentence will become a well-known cliche!

Reading Moishe's Elmer Keith entry generated lots of guns and shooting vignettes that ultimately molded my professional life and personal interests. We can, each of us, remember well what prompted our extreme interest in firearms--you wouldn't be reading 'The Gun Nut' blog if you didn't--and these were at the same time sledge-hammer powerful and unique, were they not?

As a boy I played baseball. As a man, I never followed baseball, football or any other professional sport. I've been to one professional football game, two baseball games and don't know one league from another...or the players, unless I read about some famous athelete who picked up an axe and did away with his neighbor or was found to have had a secret bevy of females unbeknownst to his family or fans. I'm a gun person and a fishing person.

My battery of guns at the age of eleven was a Daisy Red Rider. The distance from my driveway to the front door buzzer was about 50 feet. I shot it, twice, before my mother came to the door and told me to stop. I recounted the event years later to Larry Koller who laughed and didn't believe it. I have no idea why that BB gun could shoot like that. But it did. Unlike a bass, I never had an inclination to remove the hook the event had on my life.

In college I rushed through an organic chemistry mid-term exam to go deer hunting. I failed the exam...but got a spike buck that afternon. As a member of the Navy shooting team (pistol) I met, shot with--or against--the best Bull's-eye shooters in the world. Unless you were a pistol competitor yourself, you probably never heard of Benner, Blankinship, McMillan, or any other of those superb marksmen.

Which brings me to Elmer Keith...and Larry Koller. When I became a magazine writer and editor in the gun business, these two--as well as Kuhloff, O'Connor, Page, Gresham, Brown, Askins, and a few other 'old-timer' notables were alive and competently putting one word after another in print. almost all of them were walking encyclopedias on guns and shooting and I never stopped marveling at their knowledge of things both commonplace and obscure. On the obscure...both Koller and Keith knew I was a pistol shooter when I met them!

One time I asked Elmer why the .45acp cartridge was so accurate in a match-grade pistol. "It's an accurized gun". Duh.

I'm remiss in not mentioning Skeeter Skelton (what a fine guy was he), Bill Toney and "No Second-Place Winner" Bill Jordan, Border patrolmen and pistolero's all.

DP was a fairly new guns editor and writer when I gave up a perfectly good job to officially pursue the speeding bullet for less money. He'd be the first to disagree, but knowledge-wise, Dave is right up there with the best of the oldies. And maybe 'the' best in writing style. Not that there aren't other good gun writers. There are.

As for the 4x4...I don't like Mossbergs. Though they did manufacture first-rate persimmon golf clubs a few decades ago.

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from Zermoid wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Lines????
Only line I'm worried about is the one from the muzzle to the target, any others are meaningless, or Fronti nulla fides, no reliance can be placed on appearance.

Rather have a cheap, crappy looking gun that shoots sub-MOA on a BAD day than a work of art that won't hit a sheet of paper on a good day.

I've always wondered, these Uber fancy embellished guns that no one would actually shoot for fear of damaging the ornamentation and decreasing it's value, are they the ones the maker test fired and found out they won't hit the broad side of a barn?

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I appreciate all the kind words about my Elmer Keith posting, I know sometimes I put way too much info to please many of you. I am not deliberately trying to be a "Smartazz" or irritate anyone but to enlighten some of the "Kids" who would never open up anything other than their Ipods! ;-)

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I appreciate all the kind words about my Elmer Keith posting, I know sometimes I put way too much info to please many of you. I am not deliberately trying to be a "Smartazz" or irritate anyone but to enlighten some of the "Kids" who would never open up anything other than their Ipods! ;-)

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

BTW I dont care for Mossburg 500A's had one jam on me in AK when I was walking on the Chena River, I was planiing to use it against bears just in case. I threw is in the river and bought a 40 year old 870 which I still have.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Ferber

Mossturd should have stuck with the golf club business and signed Tiger Woods! LOL

Moishe

Thanks for the Elmer Keith post. Agreed that many of the young 'uns have missed out (no fault of their own) on some of the greats of the modern era. I need to re-read "Hell, I was there" again myself.

I pack a high cap autoloader, but if I was really anticipating a gunfight, I would load a pair of large caliber wheelguns to take to the dance. JMO

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from Quahog wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Retiring killer - writer or shooter, Mr Petzal?
Moishe - thank you for submitting Elmer Keith information. Sure glad he didn't suffer Zumbo's fate at the hand of the 9mm - auto crowd.
Bella - This month's "GUNS & AMMO" mag has comprehensive Mauser Kar.98AZ info - Including M1898/05 Butcher bayonet.

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from Mark-1 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

"...Harvesting is what you do on a John Deere."

Love it, DP! LOVE it!

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

They also have a very good review of the new Remington!!! 1911A1, sell for abour 700 MSRP. I may have to have another one.

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from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Might even speculate that since this gun shoots as well as it does is cos of the rather floppy looking action when taken out of the stock. the front part of the action clamps down tight cos the rest of the action flexes enough to make consistent fit when screwed down moot. Should be testable by sighting in then taking the action out of the stock then putting it back withouth controlling the tork of the screws. if point of impact moves it prooves my point. :P

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from Ferber wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Moishe
WA Mtnhunter

I published the newsstand one-shot, 'Daisy Shooting Annual' magazine in 1976. The experience was superb. When I visited the Daisy folks in Rogers, Arkansas I had a great time; Red Ryders and tons of BBs being made in front of my eyes...happy faces on all the plant hands.

Why aren't we up to our eyeballs in BBs, golf balls and monofilament fishing line? Dunno how many miles of line Dupont makes every day. I know that even back then Spalding manufactured fifty-thousand dozen golf balls a day!

Later, in researching for the magazine, I enjoyed meeting Jean Shepard for a dinner meeting--a big writer and radio guy then but also the award-winning author of the revered short story,'Duel in the Snow, or Red Ryder Nails the Cleveland Kid'. We're all familiar with the screen version, 'A Christmas Story', which is, happily, televised every year. It was a fun project and a very good magazine, authored mainly by bob Brister, Carmichel, Gresham, Bill Jordan, Gary Anderson,Virginia Kraft, astronaut Gene Cernan, columnist Earl Wilson, Fred Bear, George Nonte and 'uncle Homer' Circle. I got to use some of the original Fred Harmon Red Ryder artwork, too. (In Ed Zern's piece, 'A Very Short History of the BB Gun', Zern illustrated it with a nifty cartoon of 'Professor Daisy' measuring a sample of air used in developing the air rifle).

I guess today a 'play date' would need to be scheduled for a kid to go outside with his Red Ryder...if allowed a BB gun at all.

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from Quahog wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Bella - June edition : GUNS & AMMO. Sorry, I subscribe.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

There is a whole page of Mossyturd 4x4 rifles for sale on Gunbroker dot com and not a single bid on one of them. Wonder why? LOL

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from YooperJack wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Off topic:
Speaking of gun folks, anyone heear anything about Clay Cooper? Haven't seen anything from him in quite a while.

Moishe, your piece on Elmer Keith saved this item. I've tried six times to look at that rifle and see beauty. It's still ugly.

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Clay is posting rarely now as Ozark Hunter, thanks for the kind words yooper.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

IMO, that is one ugly rifle. Sell it in Europe.

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from focusfront wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Clem Snide;

Concerning old Elmer, I paraphrase Dizzy Dean; "It ain't bragging if you can do it."

Jim in Mo;

Europeans would only buy it if Mossberg charged $2000 Euro for it. I'm with you. Every European rifle I see, even the ones I like, looks kind of 'off' somehow. Have you noticed that Europeans don't have one sport that requires eye hand coordination? No wonder their stocks look so odd; they don't know how to hold a rifle! What's with those people?

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from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Well..it shoots alot better then it looks. I guess if the stock is functional to the shooter that's where it counts the most!
Not my cup of tea as they say..

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from elmer f. wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

i dont know david, to me, other than the funny trianle shaped depression in the back of the stock, it looks quite handsome to me. whether i like the way it fits/ handles is a whole different story. one of these days, hopefully i will run into one to pick up and hold.

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from Bella wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Thanks Quahog, I'll look for it.

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from Beekeeper wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

4X4... Looks more like a 2X4 and a knotty one at that. WMH fugly is an understatement. I guess paramilitary/sniper stocks are what sell a gun these days. I've seen several of these "All Terrain" Mossy Burgs in person and nary a one had a 2.5 pound trigger. Looks like Ol' Dave's recent revelations about sorry merchandise being sent in for testing scared Mossberg into sending a show piece for eval...

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from wingshooter54 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Read Ol' Elmer's book, "Hell, I Was There" more than once and never recall any mention of degrees or the Sorbonne. I think Petzal was referring to a degree of experience from the "Sore Bone". Now, Elmer had a hell of a lot of those. Anybody who believed the 7mm Magnum was an adequate coyote rifle and shot elk with a 458 had a lot of sore spots including the 6 inches between his ears.

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from sgaredneck wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Sounds like there is a general consensus that the 4x4 is ugly enough to make a bulldog jump off a meat wagon. And then to be overcharged for it too? Magic 8 ball says "SIGNS POINT TO NO".....

Dave, being a fellow southpaw, how about put more pressure on these manufacturers for some more left-handed offerings. We are in the year 2010 - it's not that hard to make a mirror-image item with the ol' CNC machine. Tell them not to worry about making the 4x4 lefty unless Mossburg addresses some of their QC issues and makes it more pleasing to the eye. It looks like it was designed by the same folks who designed the Pontiac Aztek.

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from fjdarrell wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

As a Field Editor for Farm Journal Magazine, I agree that you deserve a more descriptive job title.

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from Del in KS wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Well Dave the folks at ER Shaw have shipped my new MK VII rifle. Should be here in a few days. Gonna mount the Bushnell elite 6500 4.5-30 scope you recommended and wring it out as time permits.
BTW I thoroughly enjoy your writing and hope you continue to hang around posting your thoughts. So many of the best writers have gone on to the happy hunting grounds. This is not time for you to quit.

Also talked to Happy Myles yesterday and he has a hairy story to tell. Hopefully he will have time to tell it soon.
God willing Happy and I will chase turkeys next week. Really looking forward to that and maybe taking him to visit a certain kid.

Speaking of kids the better half and yours truly got a new granddaughter this morning. She already has a pink shotgun and a lifetime supply of hugs and kisses from Grandpa. Gonna have to change that pic again.

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from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Deadshot-editor ??:P

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from Del in KS wrote 3 years 48 weeks ago

WAM, What is your opinion of Mossberg??? Come on tell us what you really think. Don't beat around the bush now hahahaha LMAO

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from woodsmanj35 wrote 3 years 47 weeks ago

Yup Dave is definately the killing editor. As for the mossburg they make good shotguns, and that rifle might shoot good but it sure is ugly

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from Gary N. Miller wrote 3 years 40 weeks ago

I wish to purchase a copy of the June, 1925 Field and Stream Magazine. If you have said copy and wish to sell it, or know where I can purchase it, please contact me, via Field & Stream.

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from bluzjamer wrote 3 years 30 weeks ago

Have to comment on this rifle. I'm a big guy and shoot all kinds of arms some painful to shoot. I bought a Black Stocked MarineCote 30-06 one of these. I couldn't even go through a box of ammo it was that unpleasant to shoot. I let my friend try it and he had the same opinion and didn't want to shoot it more than twice. I kind of like the action and accuracy so I looked around for a Laminated stock to add some weight to this and tame the recoil a little. Nobody has one, I called Mossberg customer service. There is nothing they can do buy another rifle with a laminated stock they said. Pretty bad when a company that supplies these with laminated stocks can't even supply a customer with one or tell him how to acquire one. Probably just another kink in Chinese manufacturing. Just like everything else the gun industry is going steadily downhill.
I was looking for a comment from someone who bought a .338 in a synthetic stocked 4x4 to shoot but I then realized if he shoot that he'd probably be recovering for a while after shoulder surgery and probably never shoot again. Be careful out there this one is a shoulder-full.

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from iron giant wrote 3 years 24 weeks ago

I'm sure its a good gun if mossberg made it. I don't have experience with their rifles but I love their shotguns. Although I must agree that the stock is hideous as all get out, or maybe coyote but ugly would be a better way to phrase it.

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from iron giant wrote 3 years 24 weeks ago

I'm sure its a good gun if mossberg made it. I don't have experience with their rifles but I love their shotguns. Although I must agree that the stock is hideous as all get out, or maybe coyote but ugly would be a better way to phrase it.

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from Alex Povolotski wrote 1 year 51 weeks ago

Just don't forget to tighten all the screws before heading to the range, especially the scope base and rings screws.

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from Bwana Hunter wrote 1 year 51 weeks ago

Alex - you appear to be pleased with your new Mossberg, and that's good. But...couldn't you put all those entries into just one post..?!! Anyway, best of luck with the new smokepole..

My take on the latest offerings from this long time gun maker is that despite the negative feelings on the stock configurations, it's a decent rifle, perhaps more so depending on the final price.

However, IMHO a feller could do better with this same 'Howa' product in a Weatherby Vanguard - and you'll get an extra round in the magazine, plus another 2 inches of barrel in the standard chamberings. That counts for something too in my books.

And in addition the Vanguard has a more pleasing stock to most of the pilgrims eyeing it and a superior fit and feel when hefting it to the shoulder and imaginary firing of it.

Everybody shoots better with a firearm that fits them well, operates smoothly, and comes from a gun manufacturer with a long line of exceptional products for 'field & stream'..
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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from Josh Giannino wrote 1 year 39 weeks ago

4x4 mossberg rifle= JUNK. I put 7 rounds threw my 338 and it cracked the stock in several places, dont waste your money, by a good savage or vanguard, i have been told by a few others im not the only one this happened to.

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from Lonnie Brewer wrote 8 weeks 20 hours ago

I bought a Mossberg 4x4 in .338 Win Mag a couple of years back and it is a GREAT and ACCURATE rifle. I've fired @600 or so rounds through it and had 0 problems. I've noticed that WA Mtnhunter has been on several other sites, as well as this one, bashing Mossberg repeatedly. Heck man, if ya don't like 'em, that's fine. But get over it. After a dozen or so negative comments saying the same old thing, it gets old. Almost to the point of whining on and on... There's nothing wrong with Mossberg. I've got a couple of .22's and 2 or 3 old bolt action shotguns and never had a single problem with any one of them. Anyhow, unlike some, I won't post anything negative (or positive) about something unless I've seen with my own eyes how good or bad it performs. The Mossberg 4x4 is a dependable and affordable rifle.

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Everything we have all Forgotten about Elmer Keith. A good read.
Elmer Keith: 1899-1984

By John Taffin

An era has passed. Elmer Keith, the Grand Old Man is dead. Elmer, who seemed bigger than life, should have died in a gunfight, or have been mauled by a grizzly, or simply rode off into the sunset. Instead, the big Stetson and the Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum were set aside in December of 1981 when he suffered the de-habilitating stroke. His strength showed as he fought the stroke for over two years, passing away on February 12, 1984 in a Boise nursing home.

Elmer was born right at the end of the frontier period on March 8, 1899 in Hardin, Missouri, and consequently knew many Civil War veterans and gunfighters in his early years. In fact, he recounted learning to shoot a handgun from a former gunfighter turned barber, shooting at the patterns in the linoleum in the back of the barber shop.

In 1911, Elmer was burned terribly in a hotel fire in Missoula, Montana, and carried scars for the rest of his life. An ordinary man would have died from the fire. His entire body was covered with burns and his chin was "welded" to his right shoulder with his left hand turned upside down on the back of his left wrist.

Elmer recounted this: "When we moved from Missoula back to Helena I was considerable of a wreck. My left hand was just turned upside down and back on my wrist, just a claw extended from the top of my wrist. I used to wrap a towel around it when Father sent me to school so the girls wouldn’t cringe at the sight of it. The right side of my face was all drawn down towards my shoulder, also. I was a horrible looking sight.

I told Father I had to have a left hand so I could hold a rifle and do normal things. Father contacted every doctor in Helena to try to get them to operate on the hand and break it over and straighten it out. None of them would tackle the job. They all said I would never live to be 21 anyway and they were not going to torture me any further.

Finally, I had had enough of going with only one hand, so I asked Dad if he would break it. Mother said, "Can you stand it?" I said, "I don’t know, but you can go ahead and do it anyway."

So mother got a bunch of cotton bats and gauze, soaked them in melted deer tallow, and had a lot of bandages ready. Father went down to Goodkind’s wholesale liquor store and bought a gallon of Old Granddad, 100 proof, and came home with it.

He said, "Son, do you still want to go through with it?" I said, "I do." I said "Regardless of how much I howl or pass our or whatever, get the job done. I want this hand straight whether I’ll ever be able to use it or not."

After Elmer’s Dad got him good and drunk, Elmer went on the say: "Dad put my arm on a heavy table and sat down on it with my hand between his legs. When he picked up those fingers that were doubled back of my wrist and broke them, the pain was terrific and I passed out. Father took a board he used for stretching mink and sanded it until it was smooth and slick as glass and would reach from my elbow out past my fingers. When I came to, my hand was straight. It was all laced down solid to the mink board."

Elmer’s dad had a dozed buckskin gloves made to fit his left hand, and for the next two years, Elmer wore a glove with melted deer tallow in it and forced himself to use that hand.

"In this way, I finally made a new left hand, but it was a long struggle. At first, I could hold it up to the light and see daylight between the bones right down to the palm of my hand. After a couple of years working with it every time I could and also riding broncs and pulling on the rope with that hand, I finally wound up with a pretty good hand. Even today, it’s a sorry looking hand, but it’s useful, and for a time, I even did two gun demonstrations with sixguns."

Elmer Keith had a tremendous effect on my life. While in high school, I "discovered" him and from reading his writings, I knew I had to move to Idaho. After college, I applied for and received a teaching job in Boise, Idaho, packing up the wife and three kids and headed for "Keith Country."

Two years later, in 1968, I met Elmer for the first time. Driving over to Salmon, we found his house, and with some trepidation, I knocked on the door, and was greeted by Elmer, taken in as though he had known me all his life, and my wife and I spent the day with him and his wife, Lorraine.

As expected, Elmer was packing a 4" Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum, and we spent the looking at guns, big game trophies, and I was generally enthralled. When we left, my thought was "What a grand gentleman."

What really made Elmer special was not his skill with or knowledge of guns, but his commonness. Even though he was to be the most famous gun writer of all, he always had time to talk to the ordinary guy and often answered, personally, without a secretary, 300 to 500 letters per month. His home was always open to visitors. My file contains almost every thing Elmer ever wrote about handguns. Ten years ago after he provided me with a list of all of his articles of sixguns ever published in The American Rifleman, I began collecting them and have everything from 1928 to 1953 clipped and laminated. All I need to complete my collection are the August 15th and September 1, 1925 issues, and the July 1, 1926 issue. If anyone has these, I would surely like to purchase them. Those articles from 1928 to 1953 still make fascinating reading.

A .32-20 Colt SA was the first sixgun Elmer used, soon graduating to the big bores. When he blew the loading gate of a Colt SA .45 using 300 grain bullets and black powder, he made the switch to the .44 Special. Always favoring "sixguns" over autoloaders, his favorites were the Colt Sa, the Smith & Wesson and Ruger .44 Magnums. Much of his experimentation with remodeling the Colt SA was incorporated into Bill Ruger’s Blackhawk line of SA sixguns. Elmer’s influence or direct experimentation may be seen in the development of the trio of sixgun magnums: .357, .41, and .44.

Mention Elmer Keith and a number of things pertaining to handgunning come to mind:

(1) The .44 Magnum – Elmer began experimenting with heavy loads in the .44 Special in the 1920’s and his load of 18.5 gr. of No. 2400 in the old balloon head cases of 17.5 gr. of No. 2400 in modern solid head cases with the 250 gr. Keith bullet is still an excellent load. Just last Saturday, I shot some through a new Smith & Wesson Model 24, 6-1/2" .44 Special, getting 1" groups at 25 yards with velocity over 1200 fps. Hid experiments led to the introductionof the .44 Magnum in 1956 bringing handgunning into the modern era.

(2) The Keith Bullet – The 250 gr. .44 Special bullet was designed in 1926 and became No. 429421 for the Lyman-Ideal Company. Later .38 (No. 358429) and .45 (No. 454421) designs were introduced. Every bullet mould company offers "Keith" Bullets which are semi-wadcutter in design. The closest to his original design is offered by North East Industrial (N.E.I.).

(3) Keith Holster – Catalogued by Lawrence as their No. 120 Keith, this is a modification of the Tom Threepersons design and is offered by every holster maker. Simplicity in itself, just enough leather to cover the sixgun and leave the hammer, butt, and trigger exposed with a heavy safety strap for security.

(4) Long Range Handgunning – Keith was the original advocate of handguns useful for more than short range work and he was ridiculed by detractors for many years. The Silhouetters have proven how right he was.

(5) Handguns for hunting – Again he was ahead of his time, he led the way

During the 1920’s and 1930’s, Elmer was a rancher and big game guide in Oregon and Idaho with his first articles starting to appear at this time. His first published work was in the American Rifleman in 1924, and 60 years later, his works are still being published in Guns and Ammo. In World War II, he served as an inspector at the Ogden Arsenal and went full time as a writer in the ‘50’s. During his career, he served on the staff of The Outdoorsman, The American Rifleman, Western Sportsman, Guns, and Guns and Ammo.

When the Outstanding American handgunner Awards Foundation was established to recognize outstanding contributions to handgunning, it was a foregone conclusion that Elmer would be the first recipient. The original award was given to him in 1973.

Elmer also wrote 10 books, beginning with Sixgun Cartridges and Loads in 1936 and ending with his autobiography, Hell, I was there! In 1979. Two of his books are absolute musts for handgunners, those are his last one, his autobiography, and, of course his Sixguns, first published in 1955.

To some, Elmer Keith was a throwback out of touch with modern times. After all, he’sd choose a .45 Colt SA over a modern DA 9mm, but then anyone who knows handguns and had to bet his life would certainly feel safer with the old .45. I know I would.

Last fall, I had a display at Boise State University for the State Conference of Teachers of Reading and Writing. My display had to do with writing and handguns, with a section devoted to Elmer Keith. Elmer’s son, Ted, heard about it and came to visit me and we talked at length about two things…

One is the plan to offer an Elmer Keith Commemorative. This would be a 4" .44 magnum Smith & Wesson with plainclothes stocks and a few simple inscriptions. Hopefully this will come to pass and will not be like the Colt John Wayne Commemorative ($3000!!). It should be a gun that Elmer’s real fans, the ordinary sigunner, can afford.

The other is the hope of an Elmer Keith Museum in Salmon, Idaho. Contributions for this can be made to Elmer Keith Museum Foundation, Idaho First National Bank, Salmon, Idaho.

(webmaster's note - this article was written in 1984 - the Elmer Keith Museum idea died a long time ago)

We as handgunners owe much to Elmer Keith. As long as there are big bore sixgunners, his spirit will live on. I’ll miss him.

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from buckbull wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Never been a big fan of mossturds and this rifle will not change my mind. There are better choices for the money, weatherby vanguard and marlin xl7 just to name 2.

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from Del in KS wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Well Dave the folks at ER Shaw have shipped my new MK VII rifle. Should be here in a few days. Gonna mount the Bushnell elite 6500 4.5-30 scope you recommended and wring it out as time permits.
BTW I thoroughly enjoy your writing and hope you continue to hang around posting your thoughts. So many of the best writers have gone on to the happy hunting grounds. This is not time for you to quit.

Also talked to Happy Myles yesterday and he has a hairy story to tell. Hopefully he will have time to tell it soon.
God willing Happy and I will chase turkeys next week. Really looking forward to that and maybe taking him to visit a certain kid.

Speaking of kids the better half and yours truly got a new granddaughter this morning. She already has a pink shotgun and a lifetime supply of hugs and kisses from Grandpa. Gonna have to change that pic again.

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from Del in KS wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Sounds like a nice rifle but that stock is a no go for me. My ER Shaw rifle is due this month.
On the other hand the Kansas turkeys were giving it their best this morning. Seven Birds were gobbling in different directions. Three of them had lust in their heart when they came strutting over the ridge looking for love only to find a load of #6 HD shot. Pics are posted.

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from Walt Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

"The stock lines are...unique" C'mon Dave, if you want to be called "killing editor" and want to be believable you can't hold your fire on that stock like you did. And you call the Savage 110 ugly!! Maybe you're just being politically correct about their rifle so you don't have to be about their shotguns(which in itself is disturbing!). Personally I like the stock, it looks like it means business and being a Mossberg product I'm sure it handles and functions like an American made firearm should. Reliable and affordable.

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from SL wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I doubt Keith had any sort of college degree. The highest degree any gun writer has ever earned is a B.S, and don't mistake that for a "bachelor of science" either.

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from Del in KS wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Jere, Thanks for the post on old Elmer. One of the best times was meeting him at the NRA convention in KCMO back in '79. He was a true gentleman and introduced his wife. The first thing I saw was the big hat, cigar and entourage of followers.
After taking another look at the above photos of herr Dave and Philbert. Dave you just look the part of a killer. Look at those beady eyes staring you down like a rattler. Phil looks like a happy go lucky guy that wouldn't hurt a........turkey apparently.

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from yohan wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Yup,. never fails,. market ( economic ) forces are still the mothers of invention~~~
Tough economy prodces ( dare we admit ) that which approaches and in many cases now exceeds the performance of the standard "first string " production brands.
Could it possibly be? ,. that the "second stringers"
like Mossberg,Marlin,and Savage ( of course) serve to reduce value on the upper end prodcution guns?
by exceeding their performance?

Only time will tell, but having recently picked up an xl7 I can now attest to a pervious notion which is.
That dam thing is a shooter. Nevr would have believed it
magazine article or not.
Five shots in 1/1/4 iches at 100 yds and that was with the low end scope that came with it.!!
Its light so 180 gr pills over time will get your attention ,..
Still never having shot 5 times at any one animal ( for over 40 years anyway ) ,.. not gonna let ecoil bother me.
Truthfully I am now considering moving one of my pet Mausers into back up position on an upcoming trip to
"hunt da moose ya".

Moreover it is beginning to looks like $500 +/- will get it done,.. which is great news for entry level shooters.

And some of us who have been looking down our noses ( me for instance) at the second stringers,. for low these many years. May be eating some crow ,. like I recently had to do. But hey ,.a little crow hear and there never hurt anyone. Right ?

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from npdion wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Do I detect a little Ed Zern creeping in?

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from pbshooter1217 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Looks sort of futuristic.

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from Gritz wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

The stock looks like a mutt between the semi auto Winchester front end and a back end from who knows where. I would think that it would be a little unbalanced for carrying but would be happy to test one out in the field just to make sure if they wanted to send me a free one. I have seen a lot of ugly cars come out in the last decade too but to them I say the same, I would drive/shoot it if someone gave me one. Would I put my own money down on one? Probably not without a test drive.

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from ishawooa wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Field editor sounds a lot like a fieldmarshal. Killing editor could be the name of an action packed movie thriller. Come to think of it Petzal has surperbly acted in some better than ordinary educational videos (I'm still waiting on the one regarding breaking 2 year old mule colts for mountain hunting use and feel certain that it is in process. I'm hope I'm not being an a$$ about mentioning the delay).
The Mossberg is difficult to criticize given its performance although a hands on examination will be necessary prior to drawing final conclusions. Price is decent.
Keith, Sorbonne?? I somehow always assumed that his bachelors, masters, and doctorate were obtained mainly at the Oasis, the Mint, and the Buckhorn as well as being the locations of his most vivid and dramatic verbal post-grad presentations. Actually I miss the ole boy as he never failed to provide entertainment along with some education gained from experience. Great storyteller. RIP Elmer.

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from libertyfirst wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

That rifle may shoot pretty well but the stock is truly butt ugly.

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from davidpetzal wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

To NP dion: Little Ed Zern creeps in all the time.

To Mark !: "Harvest" is what you do with a John Deere.

To Ishawooa: The mule-breaking project fell through. There was disagreement over my use of "field-expedient motivational devices" that could not be resolved.

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from crm3006 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Petzal as Killing Editor is an idea whose time has come!
As to the rifle? Two things wrong with it. Made by Mossberg, and detachable magazine. My old Remington is as much Ugly as I can stand.
Moishe-
Thanks for the Elmer Keith post. Several things in there I did not know.
yoyo-proud of you son! Two posts without a single yuk yuk and not one political prevarication. Still an idiot, but showing improvement.

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from Amflyer wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Dave, in no way can call yourself "the killing editor" unless you have previously shot a man in Reno.

Just to watch him die.

Sorry, that's just the rule.

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from Ferber wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

"Truth is stranger than fiction". Write that down. It's not only often true...someday that sentence will become a well-known cliche!

Reading Moishe's Elmer Keith entry generated lots of guns and shooting vignettes that ultimately molded my professional life and personal interests. We can, each of us, remember well what prompted our extreme interest in firearms--you wouldn't be reading 'The Gun Nut' blog if you didn't--and these were at the same time sledge-hammer powerful and unique, were they not?

As a boy I played baseball. As a man, I never followed baseball, football or any other professional sport. I've been to one professional football game, two baseball games and don't know one league from another...or the players, unless I read about some famous athelete who picked up an axe and did away with his neighbor or was found to have had a secret bevy of females unbeknownst to his family or fans. I'm a gun person and a fishing person.

My battery of guns at the age of eleven was a Daisy Red Rider. The distance from my driveway to the front door buzzer was about 50 feet. I shot it, twice, before my mother came to the door and told me to stop. I recounted the event years later to Larry Koller who laughed and didn't believe it. I have no idea why that BB gun could shoot like that. But it did. Unlike a bass, I never had an inclination to remove the hook the event had on my life.

In college I rushed through an organic chemistry mid-term exam to go deer hunting. I failed the exam...but got a spike buck that afternon. As a member of the Navy shooting team (pistol) I met, shot with--or against--the best Bull's-eye shooters in the world. Unless you were a pistol competitor yourself, you probably never heard of Benner, Blankinship, McMillan, or any other of those superb marksmen.

Which brings me to Elmer Keith...and Larry Koller. When I became a magazine writer and editor in the gun business, these two--as well as Kuhloff, O'Connor, Page, Gresham, Brown, Askins, and a few other 'old-timer' notables were alive and competently putting one word after another in print. almost all of them were walking encyclopedias on guns and shooting and I never stopped marveling at their knowledge of things both commonplace and obscure. On the obscure...both Koller and Keith knew I was a pistol shooter when I met them!

One time I asked Elmer why the .45acp cartridge was so accurate in a match-grade pistol. "It's an accurized gun". Duh.

I'm remiss in not mentioning Skeeter Skelton (what a fine guy was he), Bill Toney and "No Second-Place Winner" Bill Jordan, Border patrolmen and pistolero's all.

DP was a fairly new guns editor and writer when I gave up a perfectly good job to officially pursue the speeding bullet for less money. He'd be the first to disagree, but knowledge-wise, Dave is right up there with the best of the oldies. And maybe 'the' best in writing style. Not that there aren't other good gun writers. There are.

As for the 4x4...I don't like Mossbergs. Though they did manufacture first-rate persimmon golf clubs a few decades ago.

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I appreciate all the kind words about my Elmer Keith posting, I know sometimes I put way too much info to please many of you. I am not deliberately trying to be a "Smartazz" or irritate anyone but to enlighten some of the "Kids" who would never open up anything other than their Ipods! ;-)

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Ferber

Mossturd should have stuck with the golf club business and signed Tiger Woods! LOL

Moishe

Thanks for the Elmer Keith post. Agreed that many of the young 'uns have missed out (no fault of their own) on some of the greats of the modern era. I need to re-read "Hell, I was there" again myself.

I pack a high cap autoloader, but if I was really anticipating a gunfight, I would load a pair of large caliber wheelguns to take to the dance. JMO

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from MLH wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Nice seeing Mossberg putting out a fine-shooting well-priced gun. Pity seeing a piece of walnut wearing such a plastic stock design.

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from duckcreekdick wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I would bet that crusty old Idaho cowboy would have a few words to say about the stock design and they wouldn't be in French.

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from Mark-1 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

As "Killing Editor", DP, I hope you don't "harvest" deer, elk, sheep, pronghorn, etc.

God, I hate that "harvesting" reference!!!!

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from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I dont know bout the 4x4.. seen it taken appart and the action itself looks rather flimsy.. seen more metal on the bottompart (that u dont see on the outside) on severe ultralightweights. and id have to plan alot be4 i dared attempt to freefloat the barrel and bed the dang thing.. Witch i see as an absolute requirement for all my guns (i dont hold to the american way of making the stock stiffen up the barrel, cos i dont expect my gun to give me 3 shot groupings but 20 shots in the same hole) Id rather go with the howa in this pricerange any day. tried and true mechanism that in many aspects is an improvement of the 700 remington.
But hey i see the 4x4 as a much better approach to cheap knockabout guns than the remington 770`s :P
Its just i demand more of my gun than i am ever able to use in field. And savages r really ugly in my wiev. (dont burn me all u savage owners, cos i actually have considered a 112 low profile in 22-250 just cos it offers better rifle twist..) I just have to get my next gun customized i guess.. and for a really cheap gun id rather take a weatherby synthetic any day. atleast u can improove the trigger alot with replacement parts or trigger and a good stock on it will make it into a real shooter.. alot better calibre choices too and theire purdy in a bell and carson stock :) mechanically similar to the howa too so u know u get a good strong action for it that has potential even for making a serious benchrestgun out of..
peace

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from shane wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

They make this same rifle with traditional looking stocks. Still not sure if I'd buy one.

I am considering their 464 lever gun so I don't have to beat on my '94. Think that thing is as good or better than this one?

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from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

and to our killing editor how bout a gunrewiev about something really new, not just rehashing of old concepts, refinements and exclusives?? check out http://innogun.com/
How bout a rewiev of those?? :):):)

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Now I wonder what Cactus Jack would have to say about that Mossburg .......

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from shane wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Suggestions for the Killing Editor - Two "what's good for what" posts. One on barrel contours, another on reticles. The latter is the one I'd really like to see, but both would be a good read for most of us.

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from idduckhntr wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

#1 its a Mossberg, #2 who in the hell desinged the stock? I think I will pass and still buy a Cooper.

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from ishawooa wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

David Petzal: Totally understandable regarding the discontinuation of the "mule video". In fact it appears there similiar training aids are often utilized out behind the barn in Wyoming. PETA never offered any approval of such methods but we don't give a damn anyway.
Kindly pursue more appropriate gun related educational videos in the future for presentation on this blog as the previous ones were truly impressive and I'm not shixxing you.

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from M1jhartman wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Looking at that picture I don't know that I have ever gazed upon an uglier boomstick.
-Dave-You can have "Killing Editor", call me the "The Hole Maker"

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from Carney wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Well. Looks like Mossberg has a lot of PR work to do with my fellow bloggers. Now if Dave was to talk that PR Lisa gal into being a booth babe -- well, I bet most of you guys would be head over heals for Mossberg...

Anyway. I like the looks of that stock just fine. I might just buy one. It'd be a done deal if it was some kind of a new fangled lever action.

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from davidpetzal wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

To Shane: Thanks for the ideas. They are good ones.

To Ishawooa: There is a series in the works right now.

To Canadian Lurker: You're absolutely right. I stand corrected.

To Del in KS: Thanks for the kind words. When I got to my basic training company in the Army, we had photos taken for our ID cards. Mine was so scary that someone on the cadre got a copy of it and put it on the bulletin board in the orderly room with a sign underneath that said: "This is the kind of man we want."

To All: Ol' Elmer never got a doctorate from the Sorbonne or anyplace else. I doubt he finished high school. But he could sure tell a story. I just threw that in to see if you were paying attention and to sow the seeds of doubt, mistrust, and confusion. Sort of like an Eric Holder press conference.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

There is a whole page of Mossyturd 4x4 rifles for sale on Gunbroker dot com and not a single bid on one of them. Wonder why? LOL

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from YooperJack wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Off topic:
Speaking of gun folks, anyone heear anything about Clay Cooper? Haven't seen anything from him in quite a while.

Moishe, your piece on Elmer Keith saved this item. I've tried six times to look at that rifle and see beauty. It's still ugly.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

IMO, that is one ugly rifle. Sell it in Europe.

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from focusfront wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Clem Snide;

Concerning old Elmer, I paraphrase Dizzy Dean; "It ain't bragging if you can do it."

Jim in Mo;

Europeans would only buy it if Mossberg charged $2000 Euro for it. I'm with you. Every European rifle I see, even the ones I like, looks kind of 'off' somehow. Have you noticed that Europeans don't have one sport that requires eye hand coordination? No wonder their stocks look so odd; they don't know how to hold a rifle! What's with those people?

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from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Well..it shoots alot better then it looks. I guess if the stock is functional to the shooter that's where it counts the most!
Not my cup of tea as they say..

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from Beekeeper wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

4X4... Looks more like a 2X4 and a knotty one at that. WMH fugly is an understatement. I guess paramilitary/sniper stocks are what sell a gun these days. I've seen several of these "All Terrain" Mossy Burgs in person and nary a one had a 2.5 pound trigger. Looks like Ol' Dave's recent revelations about sorry merchandise being sent in for testing scared Mossberg into sending a show piece for eval...

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from Douglas wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Mossberg has a history of producing durable working people arms. Any idea when we can get our grubby hands on one to check it out?
Glad to see this company is still in production. I hope its made in the USA.

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from Mjenkins1 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I wish they would have just left somewhat "traditional" stock lines on it instead of this "radical" sort of design. Either way, I'm a fan of Mossberg.

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from yohan wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Jim in MO

slightky off topic so wont stay long,.
Got it my head to consider 26' tube for 6.5x55
any experiance with that ?

Thanks ?

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from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Yohan the 6,5x55 is very much used as a competition gun here cos its a soft shooter. and long thick barrels on it is the rule of thumb and can be reccomended ;)

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from jbird wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Sounds like a good shooter for the money. I'd like to know how it did w/factory loads. I think the stock design would work for synthetic, but it's a little over the top for walnut.

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from NolanOsborne wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Stock is ugly as sin, but you can't expect everything for 400..

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from focusfront wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

moishe;

Thank you for that article about Elmer Keith. I knew a lot about him and knew he had been burned, but never knew the story of his left hand. Explains a lot about Elmer's handgun preferences. A one handed man has a much tougher time using a auto pistol than a revolver. Try loading a pistol magazine, racking the slide, or clearing a jam one handed, and you'll know what I mean.

I always got a kick out of reading Elmer Keith because more than any other gun writer, there was no doubt in Elmer's mind that everything he said was right. And there was absolutely no point in arguing with him, either. He'd seen too much. He knew that big bullets worked because he saw them work, and saw small bullets fail. He never had TSX bullets, though.

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from Canadian Lurker wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Being a graduate of the Sorbonne Elmère would have used the correct "À chacun son goût".

Some pom sniper is putting his .338 Lapua magnum to good use. 2 hits at 2700 yards is pretty darn good. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/afghanistan/article7113916.e...

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from Bernie wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Moishe, that was a great post about Elmer Keith. I have three of his books and admired him.

I owned a Mossberg 342-K .22 rimfire in the early '60s. Damned magazine wouldn't feed right, trigger had to be ten pounds. I never have owned a Mossberg since no matter how the new ones shoot. They are ugly as hell. I have to admit I am a lot like my 92-year-old father who owned a 1937 Ford, a '38 Ford and a 1959 Ford. He didn't like any of them so never would buy another Ford. Buy a Mossberg if you wish. I will pass, thank you.

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from djp wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Unless Mossberg has fixed the design of the Raptor/Charter Arms/ATR before they pimped it up and labeled it a 4x4...it's still a self-disassembling pile of junk...but I guess if it's cheap and semi-accurate, who cares if it's the disposable model.

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from dick mcplenty wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Looks like another Howa 1500.

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from blueridge wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

L'editor de mort...

You would be well named. A shooting editor who only hits targets would be an editor of paper targets.

We miss Elmer...how on earth did he get a doctorate from the Sorbonne? Was a .44 magnum involved?

Blue

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from blueridge wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Thanks for clearing that up, Dr. P. I had visions of Elmer putting his .44 mag up against DeGalle's nose, and talking him into a degree.

Vive la .44.

Blue

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from Bella wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I got my first bolt gun 'tother day. It ain't a Mossberg, it is a Mauser Karabiner 98. The cost is right, free. This old war horse has Spanish markings and is bored for .308 Win.
I can only surmise that it was sent to help out Franco seventy years ago and the Spaniards converted it to Nato Standard when they joined up. Considering the availability of .762 NATO versus 8mm Mauser, this is a gift. The bore is bright, the bolt works flawlessly, the stock is kinda crunchy but boy do it shoot. No I am not going to "sporterize" it. It is worth more to me as a Karabiner 98 than as anything else. Now I just need to find the right "butchers blade" bayonet!

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from Jeff Bowers wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Love Mossberg shotguns, but never been exceptionally thrilled with their rifles. I have heard they're simple and get the job done, which are my primary requirements.

How about iron sights? Is that another cost-cutting procedure nowadays? I have my Leupold see-throughs on my Remington, and still like to shoot the occasional with them.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Mossberg shotguns keep the gun industry in business. The spare parts, wood stocks, and repairs keep local 'smiths and parts suppliers busy. Not to mention hunters upgrading to good shotguns once the couple thousand round mark is passed.

No offense Jeff4066, but see-through's on a bolt gun should be added to the Bore Snake and Mossberg as things as useless as the U.S. Congress.

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from Zermoid wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Lines????
Only line I'm worried about is the one from the muzzle to the target, any others are meaningless, or Fronti nulla fides, no reliance can be placed on appearance.

Rather have a cheap, crappy looking gun that shoots sub-MOA on a BAD day than a work of art that won't hit a sheet of paper on a good day.

I've always wondered, these Uber fancy embellished guns that no one would actually shoot for fear of damaging the ornamentation and decreasing it's value, are they the ones the maker test fired and found out they won't hit the broad side of a barn?

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

BTW I dont care for Mossburg 500A's had one jam on me in AK when I was walking on the Chena River, I was planiing to use it against bears just in case. I threw is in the river and bought a 40 year old 870 which I still have.

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from Quahog wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Retiring killer - writer or shooter, Mr Petzal?
Moishe - thank you for submitting Elmer Keith information. Sure glad he didn't suffer Zumbo's fate at the hand of the 9mm - auto crowd.
Bella - This month's "GUNS & AMMO" mag has comprehensive Mauser Kar.98AZ info - Including M1898/05 Butcher bayonet.

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from Mark-1 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

"...Harvesting is what you do on a John Deere."

Love it, DP! LOVE it!

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from Ferber wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Moishe
WA Mtnhunter

I published the newsstand one-shot, 'Daisy Shooting Annual' magazine in 1976. The experience was superb. When I visited the Daisy folks in Rogers, Arkansas I had a great time; Red Ryders and tons of BBs being made in front of my eyes...happy faces on all the plant hands.

Why aren't we up to our eyeballs in BBs, golf balls and monofilament fishing line? Dunno how many miles of line Dupont makes every day. I know that even back then Spalding manufactured fifty-thousand dozen golf balls a day!

Later, in researching for the magazine, I enjoyed meeting Jean Shepard for a dinner meeting--a big writer and radio guy then but also the award-winning author of the revered short story,'Duel in the Snow, or Red Ryder Nails the Cleveland Kid'. We're all familiar with the screen version, 'A Christmas Story', which is, happily, televised every year. It was a fun project and a very good magazine, authored mainly by bob Brister, Carmichel, Gresham, Bill Jordan, Gary Anderson,Virginia Kraft, astronaut Gene Cernan, columnist Earl Wilson, Fred Bear, George Nonte and 'uncle Homer' Circle. I got to use some of the original Fred Harmon Red Ryder artwork, too. (In Ed Zern's piece, 'A Very Short History of the BB Gun', Zern illustrated it with a nifty cartoon of 'Professor Daisy' measuring a sample of air used in developing the air rifle).

I guess today a 'play date' would need to be scheduled for a kid to go outside with his Red Ryder...if allowed a BB gun at all.

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from Quahog wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Bella - June edition : GUNS & AMMO. Sorry, I subscribe.

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from elmer f. wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

i dont know david, to me, other than the funny trianle shaped depression in the back of the stock, it looks quite handsome to me. whether i like the way it fits/ handles is a whole different story. one of these days, hopefully i will run into one to pick up and hold.

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from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Deadshot-editor ??:P

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from Del in KS wrote 3 years 48 weeks ago

WAM, What is your opinion of Mossberg??? Come on tell us what you really think. Don't beat around the bush now hahahaha LMAO

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from woodsmanj35 wrote 3 years 47 weeks ago

Yup Dave is definately the killing editor. As for the mossburg they make good shotguns, and that rifle might shoot good but it sure is ugly

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from Gary N. Miller wrote 3 years 40 weeks ago

I wish to purchase a copy of the June, 1925 Field and Stream Magazine. If you have said copy and wish to sell it, or know where I can purchase it, please contact me, via Field & Stream.

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from Bwana Hunter wrote 1 year 51 weeks ago

Alex - you appear to be pleased with your new Mossberg, and that's good. But...couldn't you put all those entries into just one post..?!! Anyway, best of luck with the new smokepole..

My take on the latest offerings from this long time gun maker is that despite the negative feelings on the stock configurations, it's a decent rifle, perhaps more so depending on the final price.

However, IMHO a feller could do better with this same 'Howa' product in a Weatherby Vanguard - and you'll get an extra round in the magazine, plus another 2 inches of barrel in the standard chamberings. That counts for something too in my books.

And in addition the Vanguard has a more pleasing stock to most of the pilgrims eyeing it and a superior fit and feel when hefting it to the shoulder and imaginary firing of it.

Everybody shoots better with a firearm that fits them well, operates smoothly, and comes from a gun manufacturer with a long line of exceptional products for 'field & stream'..
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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from Lonnie Brewer wrote 8 weeks 20 hours ago

I bought a Mossberg 4x4 in .338 Win Mag a couple of years back and it is a GREAT and ACCURATE rifle. I've fired @600 or so rounds through it and had 0 problems. I've noticed that WA Mtnhunter has been on several other sites, as well as this one, bashing Mossberg repeatedly. Heck man, if ya don't like 'em, that's fine. But get over it. After a dozen or so negative comments saying the same old thing, it gets old. Almost to the point of whining on and on... There's nothing wrong with Mossberg. I've got a couple of .22's and 2 or 3 old bolt action shotguns and never had a single problem with any one of them. Anyhow, unlike some, I won't post anything negative (or positive) about something unless I've seen with my own eyes how good or bad it performs. The Mossberg 4x4 is a dependable and affordable rifle.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Is "unique" a Mossturd translation of "fugly"?

No thanks, I'll pass. I could not cuddle up to anything that ugly, much less in front of my friends. It could shoot 0.01 inch groups and it would not change things for me. My safe is a Mossturd Free Zone and will stay that way.

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from hengst wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I am pretty prejudicd against mossberg...Must agreee with WAM ...it could shoot .001 groups and I wouldn't buy it either . Besides that is with the original factory barrel, when that thing gets a case of spontaneous rustbustion I would have to get a new barrell and for the money after that I could have gotten anything other than mossturd

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

I appreciate all the kind words about my Elmer Keith posting, I know sometimes I put way too much info to please many of you. I am not deliberately trying to be a "Smartazz" or irritate anyone but to enlighten some of the "Kids" who would never open up anything other than their Ipods! ;-)

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

They also have a very good review of the new Remington!!! 1911A1, sell for abour 700 MSRP. I may have to have another one.

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from Jere Smith wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Clay is posting rarely now as Ozark Hunter, thanks for the kind words yooper.

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from Bella wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Thanks Quahog, I'll look for it.

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from wingshooter54 wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Read Ol' Elmer's book, "Hell, I Was There" more than once and never recall any mention of degrees or the Sorbonne. I think Petzal was referring to a degree of experience from the "Sore Bone". Now, Elmer had a hell of a lot of those. Anybody who believed the 7mm Magnum was an adequate coyote rifle and shot elk with a 458 had a lot of sore spots including the 6 inches between his ears.

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from sgaredneck wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Sounds like there is a general consensus that the 4x4 is ugly enough to make a bulldog jump off a meat wagon. And then to be overcharged for it too? Magic 8 ball says "SIGNS POINT TO NO".....

Dave, being a fellow southpaw, how about put more pressure on these manufacturers for some more left-handed offerings. We are in the year 2010 - it's not that hard to make a mirror-image item with the ol' CNC machine. Tell them not to worry about making the 4x4 lefty unless Mossburg addresses some of their QC issues and makes it more pleasing to the eye. It looks like it was designed by the same folks who designed the Pontiac Aztek.

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from fjdarrell wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

As a Field Editor for Farm Journal Magazine, I agree that you deserve a more descriptive job title.

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from bluzjamer wrote 3 years 30 weeks ago

Have to comment on this rifle. I'm a big guy and shoot all kinds of arms some painful to shoot. I bought a Black Stocked MarineCote 30-06 one of these. I couldn't even go through a box of ammo it was that unpleasant to shoot. I let my friend try it and he had the same opinion and didn't want to shoot it more than twice. I kind of like the action and accuracy so I looked around for a Laminated stock to add some weight to this and tame the recoil a little. Nobody has one, I called Mossberg customer service. There is nothing they can do buy another rifle with a laminated stock they said. Pretty bad when a company that supplies these with laminated stocks can't even supply a customer with one or tell him how to acquire one. Probably just another kink in Chinese manufacturing. Just like everything else the gun industry is going steadily downhill.
I was looking for a comment from someone who bought a .338 in a synthetic stocked 4x4 to shoot but I then realized if he shoot that he'd probably be recovering for a while after shoulder surgery and probably never shoot again. Be careful out there this one is a shoulder-full.

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from iron giant wrote 3 years 24 weeks ago

I'm sure its a good gun if mossberg made it. I don't have experience with their rifles but I love their shotguns. Although I must agree that the stock is hideous as all get out, or maybe coyote but ugly would be a better way to phrase it.

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from iron giant wrote 3 years 24 weeks ago

I'm sure its a good gun if mossberg made it. I don't have experience with their rifles but I love their shotguns. Although I must agree that the stock is hideous as all get out, or maybe coyote but ugly would be a better way to phrase it.

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from Alex Povolotski wrote 1 year 51 weeks ago

Just don't forget to tighten all the screws before heading to the range, especially the scope base and rings screws.

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from Josh Giannino wrote 1 year 39 weeks ago

4x4 mossberg rifle= JUNK. I put 7 rounds threw my 338 and it cracked the stock in several places, dont waste your money, by a good savage or vanguard, i have been told by a few others im not the only one this happened to.

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from ingebrigtsen wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Might even speculate that since this gun shoots as well as it does is cos of the rather floppy looking action when taken out of the stock. the front part of the action clamps down tight cos the rest of the action flexes enough to make consistent fit when screwed down moot. Should be testable by sighting in then taking the action out of the stock then putting it back withouth controlling the tork of the screws. if point of impact moves it prooves my point. :P

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from Clem Snide wrote 3 years 49 weeks ago

Yes, and Elmer also shot a bull elk at six hundred yards with a four-inch-barreled 44 Magnum piston. Elmer also considered the 30-06 as of marginal utility as a varmint gun. Elmer hunted hummingbirds with a 10 gauge magnum. Elmer was a small man in a big hat. Elmer, Elmer, Elmer...

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