THE POOR MAN’S DOUBLE RIFLE When I started my PH career, I just wanted to hunt DG. I jumped at any opportunity that arose and ended up hunting a lot of DG including PAC animals. My first two years included taking care of problem leopards and Lion’s that wreaked havoc under the foals and calves on a 35000-acre area south west of Lion’s Den. I had no rifle at the time and had to make do with what I got from the outfitter and ranch owner. These where a 308 Win and a 7x57mm. I shot 7 leopard, 5 lionesses, more buffalo than I can remember and 1 Lion. For the buffalo I was permitted to use a spare 375 H&H and on very rare occasions the outfitters 500 Jeff, but not for the rest. I ended up shooting some of the buffalo with the 7x57mm as we bumped into them while out hunting other game for the pot. I always had a tracker with me and we used horses on most of the hunts to get to where we were going. I know these are not recommended for the purpose and even back then probably illegal, but it was the way it was. During my first two years in between hunts where I was mostly in charge of looking after the camp while on safari, I spent many hrs checking and replenishing baits. Every now and then I would be invited to go along hunting elephant and buffalo. This was the life. It was a very “wild” ranch and the cattle where just as wild as the game. If the owner ran short on cash we use to go out and shoot a “mombe” bullock and take it to the Lion’s den butchery for some well needed cash. When we got sick of eating beef, I was sent out to shoot Impala or Sable (yes Sable!!) for a change in diet. All the leopard and lion I shot during this time where shot over bait. I always made my blinds inside a tree as I often had to spend the night there on my own. These cat’s where also streetwise as they were livestock killers and I was very careful with regards to shot placement and never had to follow up any wounded leopard or lion. After starting as a Freelance PH, I bought a 375 H&H believing I had the perfect back-up rifle. It served me well. I also bought a 500 Jeff which became my primary DG back up rifle. Then on one hunt, a fellow PH’s client had wounded a leopard and they needed help on the back-up. As things developed on the follow up, we ended up being very lucky. The speed and ferocity of the attack was just mind boggling, the cat launching from an ant bear hole, the other PH used a buckshot loaded shotgun. First shot had no effect and as the cat launched, he fired the second barrel hitting the neck and shoulder, the cat bounced off him after grounding him and then took off after the tracker, who had decided distance between him and the enraged leopard was the best course of action. I could not shoot as the cat was between me and the tracker. As the tracker swerved, I fired and luckily dropped the cat. It took the tracker 45 minutes to return!! At the skinning shed we found some pellets just under the skin, very dismal performance. What stuck with me though was the fact that he had been able to get off 2 shots in the split seconds of the attack. Having studied and read as much as I could about DG hunting and in particular following up on leopard it is mentioned that a shotgun loaded with buckshot is the way to go. You have 2 instant shots etc. etc. I needed a double rifle but on my meager earnings could only dream as I could not afford one. It needed to be light enough and short enough that if I have fired the first shot and I still had to be able to use the firearm with only my right hand to fire the second barrel if needed. I read about somebody who had made a “Poor man’s double” from a shotgun. I bought a Brno SxS shotgun with two triggers. I started experimenting with this on game mostly bush pig and warthogs. It very quickly became evident that buckshot of any size lacked penetration and was no good. I changed over to slugs in particular Brenneke slugs, wow what a difference!!! Then I decided to shorten the barrels to make it more user friendly in the thick stuff and also to get rid of the chokes (3/4 and full). The gunsmith chopped off 4 inches and refitted the bead. I continued my experiments and shot warthogs, bush pigs, impala, kudu, gemsbuck and blue wildebeest with it. Being very satisfied with the results, I took it back to the gunsmith and had a proper front sight fitted and also a ghost ring sight on the back. I now had my leopard medicine and an affordable and very effective “Poor man’s double” I have used it extensively ever since. The 4 inch section that was cut off and the front sight after it was fitted over the original bead. In the beginning I just used the bead. The action and the ghost ring sight fitted on the back. Top view of the front sight. Top view of the ghost ring sight. Brenneke slugs, original on the left, the other local fitted with Brenneke slugs, Armour brass solid brass case, that I use now for reloading and an original Brenneke slugs, good medicine for the “Poor man’s double” Excuse the pictures as they are pictures of pictures…some animals I hunted with the “Poor man’s double” during testing. A warthog takes his last dip. Poor man’s buffalo, the perfect platform for testing.. Kudu Warthog. Impala This was the longest shot before the Ghost ring and sight was fitted, just with the bead. 87 Long walking paces. I shot the ram from the treeline in the back ground at almost last light, he dropped on the spot. Blue wildebeest wounded by client and followed up and shot with the “Poor man’s double” and Brenneke slug. And another.. Another one horned Impala. Using the “Poor man’s double” as back up on a Gemsbuck hunt. And no, the barrels are not pointed at his head I am sitting behind him. I hope this has given some insight into a cheap alternative to anybody who has ever thought about doing the same. Used within its limitations it is a wonderfully effective tool and I have had a lot of success and fun with this combination.