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Thread: Is a H&R Topper a good hunting shotgun?

  1. #1

    Default Is a H&R Topper a good hunting shotgun?

    Thinking of buying one, just wanted to know the pros and cons of the gun.


  2. #2
    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    Don't have one - never shot one. No help here.
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    don't know never messed with one sorry

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    Lone Wolf COWBOYSURVIVAL's Avatar
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    I have an H&R Topper junior in .410. I love the gun. Simple and never any trouble out of it.
    Keep in mind the problem may be extremely complicated, though the "Fix" is often simple...

    "Teaching a child to fish is the "original" introduction to all that is wild." CS

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    Senior Member Sparky93's Avatar
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    If it is as good as the ultra slug, then I give it a big thumbs up. Never shot one, looks nice though.
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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    The H&R SS shotgun has been around since right after the Civil War, 1883 to be exact. It has survived all the survivors and will still be working when all of us are dust.

    I have repaired hundreds and can attest that unless the factory has a bad parts run, as happened when they first changed to the transfer bar ignigion back in the '80s, the gun is bullet proof. For a couple of years the transfer bars were brittle and snapped frequently. I have not seen a broken one in 20 years so I suppose they got that sorted out.

    pros: a rugged, durable, reliable piece of hardware.

    Cons: they kick like a freekin' mule and for many they feel clumbsy. I grew up with the Savage and Stevens SS guns and the H&R does not have the same feel. Just personal preference.

    I own a clone, the Rossi, in 20ga/30-06 pursuasion.
    One "Oh $H!T" cancels out a thousand at-a-boys.

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    I have shot several of these guns,stay with small gauge,the bigger the gauge the bigger the kick and i do mean kick

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    Thanks for the info, most of it seamed positive!

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    Not an expert but I am an owner of an old topper.(M488) 410

    As far as cons as I see them. Only one I see is the cost of the ammo. 410 ammo is crazy high when you compare it to larger loads or in otherwords bang for the buck. Oh yeah. It kicks more then my 308.

    As far as pros. It's as KY says it's one tough little gun. I use it for rabbit and squirrel but have also taken deer and hog using slugs. There may be better 1 shooters out there but only paid $25 for the one I have and it has paid for it'self many many times over with meat in the freezer.

    Oldtrap
    Last edited by oldtrap59; 12-10-2011 at 12:11 AM.
    Never claimed to be an expert. Just use or do what works for me.

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    Lone Wolf COWBOYSURVIVAL's Avatar
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    I may get another one tomorrow my buddy is bringing one for me to fix. Which usually ends up, me buying the gun and then fixing it.
    Keep in mind the problem may be extremely complicated, though the "Fix" is often simple...

    "Teaching a child to fish is the "original" introduction to all that is wild." CS

    "How can you tell a story that has no end?" Doc Carlson

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    I suppose I should get in on this as H&R/NEF shotguns and rifles seem to be just be becoming my favorite 'go to's" lately.

    Good price, bullet (pun) proof, years of service, and up to now solid quality.

    Do kick especially with a heavy load, so it keeps shooting at stuff that doesn't deserve to be shot at limited, you really have to "want" to shoot at something.

    When someone inexperienced asks me for advice on a basic all around firearm, my advice would be H&R 20 ga single shot.
    Old Mountain man saying, The more ya know, the less ya have to carry.

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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    The kick is due to the H&R stock shape. They have too much drop. My old Stevens, and even a couple of South American single shots I have had do not kick like the Topper in the same guages.

    Single shots of any kind are fine guns. Cheap, solid and reliable, lightweight, easy to break down and transport.
    One "Oh $H!T" cancels out a thousand at-a-boys.

  13. #13

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    One pro not already mentioned is that they can make you a better shot. When you have only one shell, you tend to learn to make it count.

    I've used one of these as my primary rabbit hunting shotgun for a long time. I don't ever feel handicapped by it.



    As an aside, I have an old H&R in .410 that has a busted stock. Anyone know where I might look for a replacement?

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucznik View Post

    As an aside, I have an old H&R in .410 that has a busted stock. Anyone know where I might look for a replacement?
    You can get one straight from H&R....about $35 bucks in 2003
    Old Mountain man saying, The more ya know, the less ya have to carry.

  16. #16

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    The first gun my parents ever gave me was an H&R Topper in .410. I've had that gun for 26 years now. It has never failed me yet.

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    Junior Member Hognutz's Avatar
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    I kilt my first deer with one in front of the dogs. It kicked like hell but being the youngin that I was I would just climb back up on that mule and ride it again. I shot that gun so much the end of the barrel wore thin and it would not hold a "pattern" fer nuttin. I gave it to a nephew and have regetted letting it out of my sight. I miss dat gun......

  18. #18

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    20 ga kicks? try the Pardner 12ga w 3 1/2" ammo.

  19. #19
    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucznik View Post
    One pro not already mentioned is that they can make you a better shot. When you have only one shell, you tend to learn to make it count.

    I've used one of these as my primary rabbit hunting shotgun for a long time. I don't ever feel handicapped by it.

    Besides the sites mentioned there is also ATI. They offer a colapsing tube w/pistol grip, if you are into that sort of thing.

    http://www.atigunstocks.com/content/9-catalog




    As an aside, I have an old H&R in .410 that has a busted stock. Anyone know where I might look for a replacement?
    ATI offers a collapsing tube stock w/pistol grip if you are into that sort of thing.

    http://www.atigunstocks.com/content/9-catalog
    One "Oh $H!T" cancels out a thousand at-a-boys.

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    ive had them in all gauges 410 28ga 20ga and 12ga , they all do as well as any shotgun can , and priced right , i wish i had a dollar for everyone that used these over the years

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