How do you choose your shotguns ?

Share your questions on all makes and models of shotguns. Please post chokes questions in the SRBC forum

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How do you choose your shotguns ?

Postby Rookie » Sat Apr 09, 2005 3:54 am

If you know your price range and availabilty, what other features do you look at when buying a new shotgun ? Weight ? Ejection style ? Safeties ? Camo ? Sights ? Wood or synthetic ? Chokes ? Shell size ?
I will be buying my first gun soon and would like to know if I am making the right decisions. Leaning towards the BPS Shadowgrass from Browning right now.
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Postby vacuum6 » Sat Apr 09, 2005 6:54 am

in my view, the gun must fit you...it must send the pellets where you are looking...it MUST point where you are looking. everything else is personal preference and doesn't mean dirt if the pellets don't go where you need them to go. close your eyes and shoulder the gun. then open your eyes and see if you are on the same sight plane as the rib of the barrel. if you are not, you need to ask if shims are available to adjust the drop of the stock for the gun you are holding to match up your line of sight with the line of the barrel/rib. regarding what brand and all the different actions...pump or auto or double....that is ford, chevy, dodge stuff...preference. keep in mind that after you shoot a box of shells through a $500 gun, it becomes a $350 gun...it may be worth letting someone else take that beating and buy an experienced gun...something with some character. ...a few nicks and stories to tell.
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Postby had » Sat Apr 09, 2005 7:01 am

if you can afford that camo bps buy that! when you buy a gun ask yourself "what am i going to be using it for?" in your case i'm guessing it's "duck hunting" so for duck hunting you most likely want camo 3inch chamber at least and your preference of action. pump is great for duck hunting.
looks like your bps is a good choice. make sure you get a sling when you buy it. you'll need both hands to carry all your gear!
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Postby Swamp Puppy » Sat Apr 09, 2005 9:09 am

vacuum6 wrote:in my view, the gun must fit you...it must send the pellets where you are looking...it MUST point where you are looking. everything else is personal preference and doesn't mean dirt if the pellets don't go where you need them to go. close your eyes and shoulder the gun. then open your eyes and see if you are on the same sight plane as the rib of the barrel.


the number one and most important thing there is right here. nothing else matters if the gun doesn't fit and isn't comfortable to shoot.

now, if you are fairly new to shotgunning, mostlikely you will have a hard time finding a gun to "fit" you. before you fall victim to some store owners scam to sell you on a couple of hundered dollars worth the gun work and instruction try this.

look at a point on a far wall and bring the gun up very slowly and deliberatly to the "high" part of your shoulder and cheek so that your eye sights straight down the rib of the barrel. the bead should look like it is sitting right on top of the receiver in front of you with no barrel visable at all. hold on that point for a second..then drop the gun while still looking at your point. it is more important to make sure the guns comes up to the correct spot each time than it is to do it quickly or pretty.

repeat this slowly 4 or 5 times..then start bringing the gun up rapidly while still looking at your point. if the guns comes up nicely and it feels more comfortable then use the "closed eyes" technique above and see how it works.

what you are doing with this exercise is training your muscles to bring the gun to bear natually. some people blame the shotguns "fit" for poor or inexperienced shooting skills.

-Ed
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Postby Rookie » Sat Apr 09, 2005 12:49 pm

Thanks. I will try to get to the store sometime in the next week to give that a try. All excellent advice. Is there any difference between wood or synthetic stocks ?
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Postby Swamp Puppy » Sat Apr 09, 2005 1:39 pm

i lke the synthetics for duck hunting. plastic stands up to water much better than wood does. :thumbsup:

once i find a group of guns in my price range and that are comfortable to hold i will start narrowing it down.

my list goes somthing like this:

synth stock vs wood = synth
pump vs auto = pump
chamber size = 3.5" mandatory
safety = prefer a thumb activated safety, but not required
choke = interchangable and should come with the 3 common choke sizes. (F,M,IC)

yadda yadda yadda....
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Postby Rookie » Sat Apr 09, 2005 7:01 pm

Thanks Swamp Puppy. I might be new, but everything I am learning here makes me lean towards exactly what you are saying !
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Postby Ducksbeus » Sat Apr 09, 2005 7:32 pm

One thing I might mention before you go snag that BPS, wich IS a fine gun, they are a little more difficult to take down in the feild, should something go amiss.
I got a Benilli Nova that can be taken down in literally minutes...most importantly, is goes back togather just as easy. The first shotgun I ever bought with my own money was a Winchester 1400 semi auto...boy did I feel stupid when I had to take to the gunsmith to put all back togather again.
Your doing the right thing...do your home work...talk to the sales guys...what do they sell more of, why? Talk to the gunsmith...what guns come across his bench more than others, why?
Puppy has given ya some good advice...wait for a sale. In the meantime, keep pluggin away...let us know what you decide on :thumbsup:

Check out a "shotgun" search at

www.gunbroker.com

Just click the link for pix and ballpark prices...Y'all have a nice day!



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Postby bgoldhunter » Sat Apr 09, 2005 11:07 pm

....
Last edited by bgoldhunter on Sun Oct 12, 2008 10:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby AlaskaRedneK » Sun Apr 10, 2005 2:59 am

Look into the "safety" on the gun.

I like the thumb safety, it is alot more convenient, natural, and smooth than the standard trigger guard safety.

All browning Brownings & Mossburgs have it standard on their shotguns, but i have heard rumors that even winchester offers a couple of models with it too.



Also stick with the synthetic stock. You wont be sorry you did! They are much more durable and water resistant.

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Postby Rookie » Sun Apr 10, 2005 4:51 am

I definitely will look into getting a sling, camo and synthetic stock with what ever gun I buy. With not hunting before, it is going to be a little harder to get the 'feel' of a gun in the store but if I pick up enough of them I should start to be able to tell what one fits me better. I do not expect to hunt too much from a boat, but there are a few places close by that are good duck and goose hunting (deer in the area too) that are along a small river and has a few small ponds as well. My 19 month old Golden has been in retrieval classes for about 5 months now to help me get these birds.

Thanks guys, this info is GREAT !
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Postby Rookie » Sun Apr 10, 2005 5:28 am

I just had a quick look online and seen that my local store has the Benelli Nova Camo listed at the same price as the Browning BPS Shadowgrass. Without actually picking these up to see how they fit, is there any opinions on which is a more reliable gun ? Sounds like to Benelli is easier to take down in the field but the Browning has a better safety and bottom ejection. I still have a few months to decide before I get my PAL to buy a gun so there is plenty of time to pick up both and get in touch with a gunsmith about repair historys.
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Postby Ducksbeus » Sun Apr 10, 2005 8:22 am

Interesting...I would think the BPS would have a higher price tag...Got my Nova at Bass Pro Shops Fall Sale last year...26" black synthetic...3 screw in chokes...$199+ tax and $10 background check. For sure get a sling. My partner comoed his Nova with tape...Im not sure the extra $$$ is worth the factory camo...looks cool enough though :cool:
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Postby Cupped-n-Committed » Tue Apr 12, 2005 6:20 am

I have an 870 and used to love that gun. I also had a Mossberg 500 I bought for my wife. I camo painted the mossberg and I love the thumb safety so much I hardly use the 870 any more. It might be a better gun than the Mossberg but the mossberg is more conveinent for me and get to go hunting more.
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Postby CALLEMQUACKTN » Tue Apr 12, 2005 7:57 pm

I have always had a mossberg 500 growing up. It fit me better than any of my friends guns. I also bought my wife a 20ga. mossberg 500 a few years ago. My newest gun is no surprise a 5oo ulti-mag with camo finish & screw in chokes. Like archeryrob I seem to hunt about as much with my wifes gun as she does. It just depends on how it feals to you.
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Postby Felsenthal » Sat Apr 16, 2005 9:23 pm

I attempt to buy the best money will buy. In other words, I find it wiser to spend $500.00 on the finest pump out there than to spend that money on an off-brand knock-off of a well known semi auto make.
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Postby Rookie » Sun Apr 17, 2005 5:26 am

I tend to agree that a little extra spent on the gun (if your budget will allow you) should help to provide a more enjoyable gun. Buying one gun at $500-$600 is cheaper than buying 2,3 or 4 guns at $300. The cheaper ones may be a lower quality that don't last or handle too well.
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Postby h2ofwlr » Tue Apr 19, 2005 4:37 pm

It is great to see some others saying fit is #1 around here. I used to be the only one saying that a year ago. ZFit is definately 31 thing to consider. :thumbsup:
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Postby puddlerjumper » Sun Apr 24, 2005 9:38 am

Here is my check list.....

Does it seem solid? If its a pump, when I hold the pistol grip and shake the gun, does the fore end rattle?

Balance? When I put the gun up to my shoulder turning as if locking onto a bird, does my gun come up where I want it?

Weight? Now, most of the time, I'll have a sling on the gun unless it's not heavy or is too pretty. But, does the gun have suitable weight to break up the recoil?

Look? I'll never buy a shotgun to look at, but I can't stand an eye sore. Even if its not pretty, does this gun attract me at all? I like smooth curves :mrgreen: .

Fit? Now, this is the number one for me. When I put the gun to my shoulder, do I smile from it fitting like a glove or am I shifting my face and shoulder.

I hope I helped.
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