« So long (at least partly) to the Big Red W | Main | The Lead Sled--America's Shame? »

January 26, 2006

This page has been moved to http://www.fieldandstream.com/blogs/gun-nut

If your browser doesn’t redirect you to the new location, please visit The Gun Nut at its new location: www.fieldandstream.com/blogs/gun-nut.

Shallow Shooters

OK, here’s a questions for all of you out in blogland: I’ve been arguing all morning with a friend at one of the gun companies about looks—not hers, the guns her employer makes. I claim that their best-selling model is coyote ugly, or as ugly as several recent Presidential daughters. And my question to you is, how important is a gun’s appearance? If it shoots good and the price is right, do looks matter?

Comments

Chris C.

Looks do matter. I guess if we were all 100% practical 100% of the time, they wouldn't, but who wants to show up at deer camp and show everybody their ugly new gun? Maybe it's not the brand you're talking about, but I think Savage has one the most accurate, inexpensive, and UGLY rifles on the market.

I've considered buying them in the past because they're so accurate and inexpensive, and every time I end up looking for something that fits that bill without turning my stomach.
On the other side of the coin, how many people have spent considerably more on a beautiful gun with a terrible trigger--the M70 Featherweight?

Hunter

Life is too short to hunt with a ugly gun.

K. Alvinson

Ugly is in the eye of the beholder! For years I took those nice walnut stocked Remingtons sanded out that high gloss finish then applied a good hand rubbed oil finish. I glassed bedded the action, floated the barrel dulled the bluing so it did not glare. Now the factory is doing it for me with the synthetic stocks, imperverious to the weather, anodized finishes and the only job I now have is floating that barrel. Most folks think that synthetic stock is ugly, I think it's a wonderful invention and I don't have to worry about it denting when I bump it against a fence of rock. Yup, they might be ugly, but they surely are practical. I have more time to enjoy my shooting hobby instead of constantly reworking wood and metal.

M. Peterson

"If it shoots good and the price is right, do looks matter?"

Well... it depends.

No, I'm kidding... There's now right or wrong answer here. It's a matter of need vs. desire with a little bit of common sense thrown in for good measure. A balancing act, if you will.

Personally, I find "purty guns" to be works of art. The overall aesthetic properties of the firearm, I find, is fairly important.

Now, would I spend a large sum of money on a "purty gun" if there was NO chance of it hitting it's target? No... Not unless it might have value as a "wall hanger". I would consider the aforementioned purchase if it was possible that said gun could be "made" accurate in a reasonable and economical fashion.

Now... would I purchase an ugly, deadly accurate gun? Perhaps. It would depend upon a number of factors. Utility, historical "interest" (like an old Stevens 25 caliber), or maybe it's just an odd looking thing that catches my interest and shoots like a laser to boot. Maybe it would clean up to look quite nice... who knows?

It's a balancing act that everyone goes through with almost any purchase. Personally, I find that there is beauty and function in every firearm.

Regards,
Matt

Noel

Well, there's the Glock (one of the ugliest inventions ever created) then there's the Walther (Bond even uses it becuse of it's looks).

Both guns perform equally in my eyes, at least as far as my accuracy goes. But, put 'em side by side at the same cost and it's the Walther hands down.

To me looks do matter, I'm ugly enough as it is without haveing to be reminded of it everytime I look down at my sidearm.


lewsi_medlock

a gun is a tool..thats it....I'll let the 10 point I got last year with my 99 dollar wally mart cva muzzleloader speak for itself in deer camp....or the 8 point i got this year with my wally mart shotgun by mossberg.
nope, i can impress folks in hunting camping with my prowess, not my checkbook. if i could shoot 2" groups at 200 yards with a 4 foot length of pvc pipe, id use that. and Id knock over big deer every year with it, because its time afield that counts, not the number of coats of lacquer on your cocobolo stock that counts.
If i want to impress I ll bring my wife over.

lewsi_medlock

a gun is a tool..thats it....I'll let the 10 point I got last year with my 99 dollar wally mart cva muzzleloader speak for itself in deer camp....or the 8 point i got this year with my wally mart shotgun by mossberg.
nope, i can impress folks in hunting camping with my prowess, not my checkbook. if i could shoot 2" groups at 200 yards with a 4 foot length of pvc pipe, id use that. and Id knock over big deer every year with it, because its time afield that counts, not the number of coats of lacquer on your cocobolo stock that counts.
If i want to impress I ll bring my wife over.

Eric Fleming

My Savage 10FP with accu-trigger is "butt-ugly" but that deer I shot with it at 175 yards in a downpour sure was pretty. Pretty is is pretty does.

Brian Thair

All shotguns go "bang." My cheapest and ugliest is a Boito coachgun. It has brought home the most birds and the most memories in its scars. Although my good-looking shotguns are a pleasure to handle and shoot, appearance is not at the top of my list.

tim  frost

i like to look good in the woods,but there is nothing sweeter than afine shooting rifle no matter what it looks like.

Chris Knight

Looks do not matter to those who know most. I agree with the other people who have posted when they say that what really matters is your ability as a hunter and the time you are willing to sit in a treestand, or a clearcut. We hunt big whitetails in Southern Ontario and very large moose in the northern part of the province and I have seen very ugly guns take both species. I have also seen pretty $1500 semi auto's jam just when guys think they have a monster for the wall. My 870 (Wingmaster, I'm not that innocent) has yet to give me any problems.

All that being said, I still wouldn't mind having a LH Sako 270WSM or a LH Dakota in the same calibre to look at. They are pretty and they don't talk back, cry or even cost as much to keep around as the other alternative....

Chris Knight

Dan McIntosh

Why not have the best of both worlds? My Super Black Eagle II is by far the best shooting gun that I have ever owned in terms of both comfort and gmae in the bag, but also happens to look like the shotgun version of a Ferrari.

Ryan Stokes

Looks may serve a purpose but they are not as important as durability & Performance. In my opinion, looks are equal with cost. I you want a good looking gun, pay for the checkering and engraving yourself.

Sid Lark

Life is too short to hunt with an ugly gun!

Yes, a gun is a "tool" no doubt, and the uglist of the bunch will kill game. This however seems a shallow and short sided view.

I'm old enough to have grown up with all/most quality firearms being made from high grade wood with gloss finish and polishing and bluing to match. Fine hand checkering and engraving are also signs of fine craftsmanship that seems to have fallen out of favor. Why should the industry produce them when we'll settle for the ugly, more rapidly assembled/finished ones?

I have never purchsed a firearm with the intent of impressing anyone other than myself. I could care less if someone else is impressed with the appearence of my firearm or not. However, truth be known, they just may be.

I appreciate a firearm such as this for all that it is, for the hours of work put into it, and for the fine craftsmanship that it reflects.

Most of us spend many more hours looking at and handleing our firearms than in shooting them. That said, doing so with black synthetic and sand blasted finishes, would be akin to kissing your Sister!

Jeff H

I own a Springfield Scout that I use for small game and a Savage 7mm Mag. for big game. Both UGLY, but both had the right price tag. I have used both all over Alaska for almost 6 years and they have held up perfectly. I consistently take more rabbit and squirrel with my Scout than friends do with their high dollar scoped .22s.
So, do looks matter??? If you are more concerned about compliments in camp from buddies than taking the game home, then yes, they do.

Cesar.C

Yes it does, But only if you have your nose so stuck-up, That people can count your hairs.

If what you aim at drops, That is what matters.

scott

Mr. Whelen seemed to have it right when he said only accurate guns are interesting.I believe most guns shoot far better than their owners are capable of. Its always humbling when better eyes,steadier nerves or plain old better skills, pick up one of my guns and put the bullets where I can't. Makes one look at that gun in a new light.

mikey waid

me and my alabamian family live on a huge piece of land.we shoot everything from squirrl,to deer,and turkey.and my all around beast stopper is the remington 710 270.cal.
we dont own high priced 22. we usually use deer rifles.besides what better way to get ready for deer season.just use winchester are federal premium cpx1 for small varmint and large game birds.

but the remington 7mm i own does the dangerous and supersized animals.when me and my dad went on a trip to zimbabwe.my dad came close to getting it from a charging rhino.but a split second shot saved his life.

SANDMAN

I'm with M. Peterson on this one. I'm ugly enough as it is, and getting worse every day, without hauling around an ugly gun.

Matt

I agree with Dan Macintosh. Why not have the best of both worlds? For instance, my Browning A-Bolt Hunter in .270 WSM has a beautiful satin finish walnut stock with a hand-checkered comb and forestock and still weighs less than six and a half pounds and shoots with tack-driving accuracy. It has an abundance of excellent features such as Browning's famous 60 degree bolt throw, a hinged floorplate with a detahcable box magazine (3 round capacity), and adjustable trigger pull. This gun has a perfect blend of looks, function, and a fairly competitve price.

-Matt O.

Cole S.

I think that all the guns in the survey are great, but where is the Mossberg 88. It is the shotgun that I use for everything and it shoots better than any 870 I ever shot. I dont know if it is just my gun or if all of them are like that.

scott rady

I have a finely finished Savage 110 variant. The lovely stock is complete with the injection mold marks. I am enamoured by the flutes on the barrel nut and the ability to see the machine marks on the barrel leaves me giddy as a freshman during his first slow dance. Now if I could just get the thing to quit shooting the bullets into the same hole...

driver

props to mr rady, i'm a loyal ugly savage mod 10 owner.who cares what they look like-as long as you the individual feel comfortable with the way your ugly gun handles,feels, and shoots. hooray for ugly guns!

glenn

Those that would put up with an ugly gun would probably put up with an ugly woman. Personally, I would prefer a pretty women. Why put up with an ugly woman unless you have no choice. Apply the same logic to guns.

Much the same as ugly women, ugly guns are low maintenance. When it rains and you are holding an heirloom that is older than you the hunt is over. If you scratch the stock of a Circassian Walnut custom job you have devalued it immensely. To me it's what's inside that counts, but if you can find one that looks good and performs flawlessly keep it. Woman or gun...




Our Blogs

Categories



Syndicate