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Ammo Rupp on Rifles

Going Hog Wild: Boar Rifles

by J. Scott Rupp   |  March 27th, 2012 18
rupp with wild boar

Wild boar hunting has become big business, with companies now making hog guns. (This Nosler Trophy Grade in .308 wasn't designed specifically as a boar rifle, but it sure got the job done on this Texas hog at 200 yards.)

What is a boar rifle? The short answer: Anything that will cleanly kill a wild boar. In other words, it’s the same thing as a deer rifle being any rifle that will cleanly kill a deer—but there are differences.

Savage Hog Hunter rifle

Savage's Hog Hunter 11/111 features a threaded muzzle for those who shoot suppressors.

Recently Savage introduced the Hog Hunter, a Model 11/111 that features a threaded barrel. And if you saw our March/April 2012 issue you probably read about the 7.62×42 Wilson Tactical round, which was developed specifically as a pig round. What these two developments have in common illustrate the primary difference between hog hunting and other big game pursuits: In many cases, the goal of a pig excursion is to severely control or eliminate populations.

Wilson Combat 7.62x40 WT

The 7.62x40 WT was developed by Bill Wilson specifically for wild boar hunting in the AR platform.

In the case of the Savage, the design allows hunters to employ a suppressor, where that’s legal. Suppressors, obviously, give people an edge in trying to shoot multiple pigs—not just because the hogs won’t be quite as spooked by gunfire noise but also because suppressors allow the operator to shoot better, faster due to reduced muzzle blast and rise.

The 7.62×40 WT aims for the same goal but accomplishes it through sheer firepower. It gives you .30 caliber diameter without .308 recoil—all with excellent feeding from an AR-15 lower. The result is fast, accurate shot placement with sufficient bullet diameter to get the job done. (Yes, I know tons of hogs are killed with .223s, but I like a lot more bullet than that.)

Some of the comments to this post are going to yell about suppressors for hunting and/or about new developments that commenters feel are just companies marketing a solution to a need that doesn’t exist. I may even agree with some of it. Over the past dozen years or so, I’ve killed pigs with handguns, muzzleloaders, slug guns and more rifle chamberings than I can recall, but all my hog hunting has been spot-and-stalk—the goal to kill a single pig, which then ended the hunt.

But a lot of people in a lot of places have different goals. Could they accomplish those goals without boar rifles such as the new Savage Hog Hunter or cartridges such as Wilson’s 7.62×40? Sure, but where would be as riflemen and hunters if we never strove for something that was just a little better than what we already had?

  • shane256

    I use the same rifle cartridges and rifles that I use to hunt deer. .260 Remington, .270 Win, .30-06, .30-30, .50cal muzzle loader.

  • Guest

    Going on a spot-and-stalk hunt in CA for hogs next week. Planning on sunrise and sunset hunts. Is it worth putting in the extra hours/miles of hiking to hunt midday?

    • Chris

      Pig hunting is CA is fantastic. Since it is cooler out the pigs might be active during the day. Most likely you will get your best opportunities in the mornings or evenings. I assume you are going with a guide. They will know where and when the pigs like to hang out. Good luck!!!

      • Guest

        No guide. To hell with guides. I know finding out-of-state land is nearly impossible without them, but a successful hunt without a guide is far more rewarding.
        Looking forward to the challenge, heard good things about CA hog hunting.

  • Peter

    Hog hunting has been quite popular here in Australia for years. In fact, hog and deer hunting are the two most popular types of hunting here. Generally, boars are not shot at long range as they inhabit scrub type bush and a handy rifle is best. My hog rifle for the last few decades has been a Winchester pre-64 Model 70 featherweight in .308 Win. .308 Win is a very popular calibre for this type of hunting here and it also doubles (with the right bullets) as a great deer rifle too. Bullets in the 130 to 150 gr range work best for both.

  • roadhore

    My AR-10 works great! A suppressor would make it work greater.

  • Jl henning

    What's wrong with a 308-ar10–or savage 270 wsw??? I have both but really don't know. What bullet to use?
    Plus we're can a person go hog hunting with paying out the butt to have fun? Everybody wants rich people not
    The working class that lives on ssi?? I know when I turned 67 I got a letter from the great Federal courts that
    G.M. Stold all of my savings for 31 years. Now I have to start all over again, and it's not easy at all. Maybe somebody would help me find a cheaper guide and please I know they have to make a living also.

    • Snug

      Jl,hunt hogs anywhere BUT California if you want to spend less and get more hunt. Hell those silly ,misbegotten fools are still trying to save a bird whose niche was feeding on carcasses of wooly mammoths that died out at the end of the last ice age so you have to shoot $25 bullets made from melted copper pennies.

  • Terry Perkins

    That 7.62X40 looks almost like the Blackout round. Me I will take my Marlin Levergun with 300 gr .45/70's any time. Boom and down.

  • Tom

    Does anyone have experience with a 243 cal or 6mm Remington in an AR platform. I really like the 243/6mm cartridge for varmit and small game, even whitetail but would like to have it in the AR. Remington makes one I think but I'd like to goe to a collapsible stock and more tactical configuration. Any ideas?

  • Peter

    I'd also use my .270 Win (also in Winchester pre-64 Model 70 Fwt) particularly with good 140 gr bullets. Though I have tended to use .308 pretty exclusively for hogs. .270 gets reserved for (mountain hunts) deer and goat in Australia and Tahr and Chamois in New Zealand, but I think it'd be pretty good on hogs too.

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  • desert shellback

    My Ruger77 RS in 358 will get some hawg-time…….as well as my LAR Grizzly in 45 win mag.

    But I do like the idea of suppressed shooting of feral hogs……it's all about severly reducing these critters.

  • dugiboy

    if my lottery numbers ever drop i shall be coming over to hunt hogs , keeping my fingers crossed here in england .

  • John Riggin

    To dugiboy
    If my Lottery Numbers ever do come in I will pay for and invite you and the other Gentleman JL henning, as I will own a Hunting Lodge , a place to eat shower cook and sleep with some comforts of home too. But if I win you two Men will have a nice 2/3 day Deal.

  • james slaughter

    My 499 LWRC, 350gr at 2300 fps out of an AR does the job quite well. I do not think that there is a suppressor bog enough for this beast.

  • Mr. Ed

    why do people always have to play with & create some new round ? the old .308 is one of the most accurate rounds ever developed and if you can't handle that best stay with a .22.

  • Mr. Ed

    maybe in USA you are allowed to own a suppressor for your sure can't in Canada

  • Thomas Deal

    I bought a 45 70 guide gun a few years ago but have not killed any pigs with it yet. But a 260 with a nosler 130gr accubond does the trick everytime and so does the 270 with 140 barnes tsx .Any deer rifle with a heavier constructed bullet will be fine . If your chasing big pigs use a bigger deer gun ! My personel best was a little over 300 lbs . Got him with a deer bullet out of a 7mag and that was all she wrote !! Good luck !

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