Need a gun??
I plan on taking a trip to SA in two years with my son but the issue is one of having enough HP in the form of a rifle. I have a custom 7mm mag which I could use for plains game however I will need a large caliber rifle for the big game. From everything that I have read, primarily from this site and links associated with it, well it seems that most if not all PH use doubles. I had heard of them, never gave them much mind as they are rare over here in the U.S. Having some research... like 40 hourts of reading...lol I understand why they are used. I also realize that I would have to become very profecient with it prior to the trip. My next question is what caliber? I am leaning towards a 500/416 or the 450/400... I would be very interested to hear from any of you concerning calibers... and types of doubles, Krieghoff, Heym, Merkel. Thanks fellas
Welcome to the forum!!
Are you going to pursue the Big Five, just buffalo, leopard?? You dont need a double but if you can afford one, have at it. Assume you know what they may cost. A good bolt action is much less expensive and works well for the vast majority of guys going to Africa. A good production bolt gun in .375 H&H or the newer Ruger is really all you need to do the job. If you want more HP, you have many choices, way too many to list here.
The doubles you listed are all high end guns worth many thousands of dollars. Same applies here as to calibers, many choices along with the .375H&H, which is probably the best all around cartridge for Africa because you can do all of your shooting with one. I doubt that most PH's actually use a double regularly. In my 6 trips I have only seen one in the hands of the PH, all the rest carried a bolt gun, usually a .375H&H. Good luck and enjoy the gun search!
Welcome to AH Mr Kilowatt! What Sest has told you is very true the fact is I've never seen a PH with a Double everyone that I seen some 10 or 15 all packed bolt action the PH that I use Rusty has a custom built 458 win mag but most of the others a 375 H&H if there going to be hunting for the Big Five. now you never said what you were planning on hunting and unless you just have a bucket full of money you just want to spend I would suggest you take the 7mm Mag for all of your plains game and borrow the Big Five rifle from your PH they normally have a loan or rental rifle to use. Just a thought. Good luck on your planning and your hunt.
Welcome to AH.
You and your son plan on a safari for Plains game and or Dangerous game.
Your 7MM will be just fine for plains game. However, You could add something in the 338 win mag or 375 H & H to add to your lineup. A rifle for each of you.
Depending on what game you are hunting for, will help you decide on what rifle or rifles you will need.
Dangerous game is 375 and above for most countries.
if you are after elephant pick something in the 404 - 416 or 458 in a bolt action.
As for double rifles, some PH's use them and so do some hunters, however the majority of PH's and hunters use bolt actions rifles.
Welcome to AH
This is from the new Christmas reading material. It does not say much to gun/caliber choice,
but it sure reiterates the importance of shot placement.
Capstick quoting Selous on Sable.
Considering my weapon, a smooth-bore elephant gun, carrying a four-ounce round bullet, backed by fifteen drams of coarse powder... the ball, after entering the chest rather low, and passing through the whole length of the body... made its exit by the left thigh, grazing the heart on its passage.
If the ability to travel a hundred yards after having had a .93 caliber ball driven completely through the body lengthwise isn't a fair demonstration of resistance to bullet energy, I'm sure I don't know what is!
Ivan C seems to wander round with those doubles a lot.
Buzz C, I have seen running around with both bolt and double.
David Sutherland shot an awful lot of problem Elephants with a bolt 375.
On your list 416 gets my vote. All preference and personality.
If you have the money for a pretty double do it.
Please share the pictures when you use it.
Welcome to AH Mr.Kilowatt!
Welcome to AH, Mr.Kilowatt! If you want a big gun for Africa get a 375 H&H, you have all of your bases covered. Now if you want to hunt most cape buffalo and elephant mostly, then moving up to something bigger. A 375 H&H that fits you like a glove is a good choice.
Welcome to the forum, Mr.Kilowatt, I would follow Enysse s advice.