Survival Gun: Crossfire Mk 1 Combination Pump

By Dave Parris, GunBroker Staff

The age-old question, “If you could only have one gun when the ‘stuff’ hits the fan, what would it be and why?” I’ll admit, this one has always been tough for me to answer. 

When I go deer hunting, I carry a gun on my hip for small game to go along with the deer rifle on my shoulder. I also keep a shotgun in my truck for any game birds I might encounter. I’m lucky enough to live in Idaho, where several seasons overlap and I like to be prepared for any opportunity. 

It also means I cannot wrap my head around “one gun to rule them all.” So, when I was asked to write-up on my vote for the SHTF gun, my brain twisted up in knots. Of course, there are the standards that you’ll find everywhere: an AR-15, or a 12-gauge shotgun

The votes for shotguns usually lean toward Mossberg 500, with the Remington 870 being a very close second. Those pump-guns have every barrel and stock configuration you can dream up, including extended tube magazines.

The AR-15 is a popular choice because of the endless options for barrels, stocks, optics, parts and high-capacity magazine. There is also a wide availability of ammo. While it can’t compete with capacity, the 12-gauge shares the ubiquity of ammo. It also adds huge versatility with the different loads of birdshot, buckshot, slugs, etc. There are even 12-gauge confetti shells, believe it or not, just in case you want to have a birthday party while you’re knee-deep in the ashes of civilization (be prepared for anything).

When it comes to bumping around the woods in small game and upland bird season, I have a secret weapon: a Savage 24B-DL in 22LR/20ga. It’s an over/under combination gun and it’s really handy to have a rifle and a shotgun in one gun. 

If I flush a rabbit and miss with the shotgun, I still have a chance with the .22 if it stops and looks back as bunnies tend to do. I can take a squirrel with the .22 and turn right around to use the shotgun on a game bird. I’m aware that Savage and some other companies have made similar O/U combos over the years in .223 Rem/12 ga. This seems like a really great thing to have. However, it just doesn’t offer the capacity or follow-up shots required for an end-of-the-world scenario. So why would I even bring it up?

Two Guns in One

Meet the Crossfire Mk 1. It’s one of the most serious contenders in my book for the one gun I’d want to have in the apocalypse. It checks all the boxes for me. With a four-round detachable tube magazine for the top 12-gauge barrel chambered for up to 3-inch shells, I can have that wide selection of ammo with a serious close-range thump. It even uses the Winchester choke tube system. 

Add the .223 lower barrel and a mag-well that accepts AR-15 mags, and I’m getting the best of both worlds. It has a rail on the forend for mounting a light and a top rail for mounting an optic. It also has a front post sight and adjustable peep rear sight, in case a battery-operated optic died. I don’t want to be bartering bullets for batteries at the end of the world.

Although it’s a pump-action, I wouldn’t say it’s a simplistic design. There’s a selector switch to alternate between the top (shotgun) and bottom (rifle) barrels, with “Safe” in between the two. In all honesty, they were plagued with issues and went out of business as a result, even though the company cleared up those issues. So, while this would be my SHTF gun, I’d want it run past my gunsmith to ensure that those issues were resolved and get the chamber converted to a .223 Wylde. 

If needed, I’d also see if he can do anything to ensure the 12-gauge would feed mini-shells to increase capacity and versatility. Finally, anyone who knows me knows I like oddball guns, and the Crossfire Mk 1 definitely checks a crucial box for me.

Crossfire Mk 1 Specs

  • Manufacturer: Crossfire
  • Action: Pump
  • Chambering: 5.56 & 12 gauge
  • Capacity: 4 for 12 gauge/AR magazines for 5.56
  • Barrel: 19” for Shotgun, 16” for Rifle
  • Stock: Plastic
  • Finish: Blue
  • Price: Around $2,000

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