I’m usually a few days behind on watching television shows, so I was watching the latest episode of Sons of Guns last night and something strange happened. Normally it seems like everything they make is a crime against nature, from their “tactical” Thompson to their “hot rod” machine gun, but for the first time ever I actually wanted something they made.
A few weeks back I went hunting with Tyler Kee on his family’s property in Texas hill country. Which, by the way, is such beautiful land that I’ve started looking for jobs down there just so I can scratch my long range itch more often. And while we did bag us some deer, the most fun part of the weekend was taking down those two hogs.
Wild hogs are the bane of a Texan’s existence. They destroy crops and property, injure people and kill livestock. In short, they’re terrible pests and they need killing. Plus they breed so fast that there’s a nearly endless supply for the Texan hunter. Oh, and did I mention you can turn them into bacon?
They’re the perfect game animal — nasty enough that you can thin their numbers without remorse, prevalent enough that you’re almost guaranteed to see a herd in some parts, and delicious enough to eat.
The problem is that the hogs move in packs, and if you’re not quick you only have time enough to down one or two before they scurry out of the hot zone. As soon as you break that first shot with a traditional hunting rifle they’re off and running, and while a quick motion on the bolt may get you back on target in time for a second shot it’s not optimal. You really need a semi-auto rifle to do it properly.
That’s where this beautiful monstrosity comes in.
What you see here is a suppressed AR-15 in .458 SOCOM, a short and fat round designed to work (albeit single stacked) in a standard AR-15 magazine and use a standard AR-15 lower receiver assembly. There’s also a silencer attached to the front of the gun to quiet the shots and hopefully keep the hogs from realizing they’re taking fire until it’s too late. The final version (up top) also has a night vision scope for nighttime hunting, when the hogs are most likely to make an appearance.
A quick note about .458 SOCOM as the ammunition choice. It’s very true that hogs have a thick hide and require some “oomph” for the round to penetrate, but I’m thinking that going straight to a round with (allegedly) as much power as a .45/70 government cartridge is a little overkill. Not to mention the fact that ammunition costs would be sky high, follow-up shots would be difficult, and the thing would have to have a rather large barrel. There was a scene in the show where the gas block for the .458 SOCOM barrel needed to be turned down because it was too large to fit under the handguards (I wonder what that does to barrel harmonics…). I’m partial to .300 BLK, but I wouldn’t be opposed to modifying this build to be based on an AR-10 platform instead of the smaller AR-15 lower.
The stock is another thing I might change. I’ve always been a fan of the Magpul UBR for precision rifles as it adds a ton of stability to the firearm, but to each his own.
Despite the minor issues I’m still salivating over this thing. But then I remember what this thing costs, and that there isn’t much use for a hog rifle in Virginia, and I go back to the classified ads for San Antonio…