As a kid growing up in Northern New Mexico & Southern Colorado, it was not unusual to see a rifle in the rack of almost every pickup in town.
My dad kept a lever action .30-30 in his truck (usually a shotgun too), and just about every “ranch kid” that brought their truck to school had some kind of rifle in the rack.
Evolution of the truck gun
The “truck gun” or “trunk gun” depending on where you live, is basically the evolution of the canoe gun concept. Traders & trappers preferred a shorter barreled weapon for use in the canoe or on horseback. Shorter barrel, easier to swing into action.
We’re starting this mutli-part post with the single shot and SxS shotguns.
The single shot break action
A single shot 12ga shotgun is just about as “all around useful” as you can get in a modern gun. Not a lot of moving parts, a multitude of available loads that are easily obtained, and very easy to learn. You can even get adapters that will allow you to fire .22, 9mm, .38, etc etc.
While not the ideal weapon for fighting your way out of a sticky situation (it is 1 round at a time lol), it’s perfect for the errant snake, or if you need to leave the vehicle for small game or birds.
The side by side
The next step up for me would be the side by side (SxS) 12ga.
This idea has a lot going for it, aside from the cool factor of being about as Western as you can get!
The SxS has the same potential for usefulness as the single shot, with the added ability for a follow-up shot if needed. I was talking to a good friend about this concept, when he popped out with, “Hell, you could leave the insert in one barrel and use the other for whatever shotgun round you wanted!”
#6 shot, #8 shot, buckshot, slugs, .22, .38, 9mm, .40, .44, .223, etc all out of one gun! From birds all the way up to larger game at close range, this is the most versatile tool in the box (or the trunk) in my opinion.
Be sure to come back for Part 2, as the Truck Gun evolves!
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