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The problem we have here is two almost mutually exclusive factors: price and capability.

I'm with the crew who favor the .410 Mossberg pump guns, especially if you can find one of the Bantams with the 18 inch barrel. It would be like having a scaled down Mossberg 500 Police Cruiser. Handy, 5+1 capacity if I remember correctly, and if you put a set of ghost ring sights on it it would do for every mission 22Mag is asking it to perform except for bear. Even 12 gauge slugs won't do much more than make Mr. Bear angry, and a .410 would just sting him some and annoy him. (Of course, my opinion is the smallest gun suitable for Mr. Bear is a 25mm Bushmaster with explosive shells, and a Rheinmetall M256 120mm cannon is better.) But for everything else, a Bantam would get it done.

Thing is, the Mossy 500 Bantam is in the $300 price range. If you could find one, a Mossberg 183 bolt action might do. It is only a 2+1 capacity, and all it has for sights is a front bead, but they are showing up on the auction sites in the $125 range. That might meet 22Mag's two requirements.
/////////////////?"Even 12 gauge slugs won't do much more than make Mr. Bear angry, and a .410 would just sting him some and annoy him."

I am thinking this is a typo. 12 gauge slugs are used by the Alaska State Troopers for defense of bears. In fact here is a direct quote from the state of Alaska on how to protect yourself from bears...
"You are allowed to carry a gun for protection in state parks. Remember, though, that more people are hurt by the guns they carry than are hurt by bears. Select a gun that will stop a bear (12-gauge shotgun or .300 mag rifle) and practice firing it at a rifle range. Any bear shot in self defense must be salvaged and turned over to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game."

A slug from a 410 shotgun carries about 650 foot pounds of energy, a 357 magnum pistol carries about 535 foot pounds. I have killed a couple deer with 12 gauge slugs and they are devastating.
 

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The point I was trying to make is a .410 isn't enough to stop a bear, and 22Mag indicated that was a possible mission he had in mind. Not being fond of bears, I feel the best way to deal with them is from long range with heavy slugs. Or maybe an atomic bomb.

A .410 is good for training, and for use against small pests at short ranges. Personally, even presuming you can shoot the defense rounds developed for the Taurus Judge and similar pistols from a shotgun, of which I have no knowledge, it would not be my first choice for home defense, one of 22mag's missions. But it's his choice, so I think first, we need to find him the best choice at his price point; and second, we need to advise him what loads he should use in it for what he wants to do with it.
 

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Even 12 gauge slugs won't do much more than make Mr. Bear angry, and a .410 would just sting him some and annoy him.
I sleep in a tent in grizzly country when I am hunting. Most of the time, I am alone. I have a short barrelled 12 ga. pump loaded with 00 buck beside me and I sleep good. Bears are strong but they are not superbeings. A 12 ga. at close range is devastating. The .410 would probably kill it, too, but not before it killed me; which is not an ideal outcome.
 

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yeah i'd say at least try to get a 20 gauge with a limbsaver. I put one on my mosin nagant and it really tamed the impact of that steel butt-plate on my shoulder.

I have an old single shot .410 that we found in my grandpa's attic after he passed. cool little thing but not what I would want to fend off a bear!

that said if you want the .410 i'd use some of the larger 3-5 pellet loads. or slugs.. not sure it matters much!
 

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22Mag, take a look at the Rossi line, they have a combo .410 and swap-able .22LR barrel model
here is a link https://www.budsgunshop.com/product_info.php/products_id/415007605/rossi+usa+410/22lrhttps://www.budsgunshop.com/product_info.php/products_id/415007605/rossi+usa+410/22lr
They also do a .410 and swap-able .22Magnum barrel...both are in your price range; these ship free from buds. Look around ymmv...https://www.budsgunshop.com/product_info.php/products_id/415007486/rossi+usa+410/22wmr+185+black
 
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My first gun, in 1952, was a bolt-action Mossberg .410 and it was deadly on squirrels.

Forget the bear.

If you look around your house, I’d guess your longest shot would most likely be 20-30 feet so you should have plenty of force. I don’t recommend a handgun because the barrel is too short, a long barrel shotgun might be hard to swing around quickly.

I’d be looking at a lever-action .410 by Henry or out of production Winchester or Marlin.

The best things about a shotgun is aim is not super-critical and shot dissipates when it hits a wall but a high-power rifle could kill your neighbor.
 

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Sorry to go off point, but a funny story. When we were kids, 1960s my brother had a single action bolt action 410. Absolutely no telling how much game, skunks, rattlers and other critters he killed with that gun over 40 years. However, it developed a strange and dangerous problem. Any time you closed the bolt it would go off, sometimes immediately or sometimes it would wait until you walked a few steps. We could not fix it and we are both mechanically inclined. I told him to get rid of it, before he or someone else got hurt. He did not.

Well some jerk broke into his house and stole it. Sure would be funny if they shot themselves in the foot. LOL
 

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Hou could pick up a good used 410 bolt action.
They come as a single shot or some have a magazine.
Kessler, Mossberg, Stevens, Nobel


Many of the bolt action 410s had rifled barrels for shooting slugs. Doubt anyone makes them anymore but lots of old ones out there and pretty cheap really. My brother killed truck loads of small game with his.

Also, the new rage is killing turkeys with the 410 and the new heavy shot alloys which are about $6 each. Not something I am willing to pay. Years ago when I first got into turkey hunting I met a guy who claimed he had killed 9 turkeys with his 410 and his teenage son had killed 4. His deal was you were not a very good turkey hunter if you could not call one into range, 20-25 yards. Now they claim the new hard loads are good to 40 yards with the 410. Hard to believe but all the gun magazines claim they work. I understand the science, just cannot get my brain to accept it.

https://www.guns.com/news/2019/05/0...obbler-getter-the-baby-model-500-turkey-video

And the ammo: That is $27.99 for 5 rounds, 5 bullets, 5 shots, ouch.
https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1019777465/
 
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.410 ammo prices are enough to make shooters get into reloading.

Love to have my old Mossberg bolt-action again.
 

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.410 ammo prices are enough to make shooters get into reloading.

Love to have my old Mossberg bolt-action again.
I lucked out years ago and bought a used Mec Jr. 410 reloader. I can load a 1/2 ounce shot shell cheap, about 4 cents for a primer, 4 for a shot cup and 6 for powder about 14 cents or about $3.50 a box. I can sometimes find the little Federal target loads for $6-$7 per box, but most are over $10. You can buy 12 gauge target loads about as cheap as you can reload but not 410.

Of course if you only shoot 4-5 boxes a year you never break even, so look for a used one like I did. I also load them for the 410 pistols which is cheap buckshot loads. I cast my own 000 Buck so once again a big savings if you shoot them a bunch.
 
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The rifled bolt action 410 must have been more a regional thing?
Ive never seen one rifled.
Ive seen bolt action shotguns on relatives gun racks but only 20ga and 12's
Seen quite few 410's at farm sale, some were boltaction's yet dont remember mention of rifled 410's though.
In fact you mentioning Most the bolt action 410's were rifled was surprising to me.
Is there any mfg figures on number of rifled 410's produced?
 

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The rifled bolt action 410 must have been more a regional thing?
Ive never seen one rifled.
Ive seen bolt action shotguns on relatives gun racks but only 20ga and 12's
Seen quite few 410's at farm sale, some were boltaction's yet dont remember mention of rifled 410's though.
In fact you mentioning Most the bolt action 410's were rifled was surprising to me.
Is there any mfg figures on number of rifled 410's produced?
My Mossberg bolt action is a single shot and has a smooth bore. It does a fine job on rabbits, or at least they don't complain
 

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I have seen the Stevens boltaction with a 3 round box mag.

I think Mossberg made a version fed from a tube mag.

Then you have the store brands.
SEARS, Montgomery Wards, Western Auto, Coast to Coast, Gambles are a few that come to mind.
Im pretty sure if you keep a eye out a fella could find a decent bolt action 410 repeater.
I still take out my full choked 20ga 2.75" Stevens 258a for ptamargan.
I bought it off J&G Sales for $48 plus shipping and my local FFL fee.

The fun thing about 410 bolt actions were they came is all sorts of versions.
Fancy to utilitarian.
Single shot, box mag, and tube fed.

The down side of the 410 is its soo small
 

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If it`s for "home defense/ wild animal protection if attacked" as you stayed, Then how about this.
They (ammo companies ) make a re-ducted load for most shotgun gauges.
You could move up a gauge or two. Get way more protection. Plus, best of all,
recoil would be more moderate. As that seemed to be one of your major concerned.
Just a thought.
 
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