20 ga on geese?

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20 ga on geese?

Postby Jimmy82 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 2:38 am

Before I get blown up, I'm asking because next season will be the first for my son pulling the trigger, and I have my old 870 youth. I didn't grow up hunting waterfowl and don't have a lot of experience. My son will be 12 and while he's slightly above average size for his age I worry about him lugging around a full sized 870. So are there shells that can take geese within reason? I'm also thinking of getting another buttstock for the 12 ga and just trimming it down to reduce lop since he wouldn't be walking miles with it. He is rather fit and I don't worry about him lifting it to shoot so much as it just being to long to easily control, thus affecting accuracy.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby John Singer » Wed Mar 05, 2014 5:55 am

A friend of mine's son has been hunting with us in recent years. He has been using a 20 gauge Mossberg 500 youth model. He has been using some brand of 3" #2 steel. I saw him kill a goose stone dead over the decoys before.

I killed a couple of geese last season with my 16 gauge shotgun with 7/8 oz of #1 steel at 1550 fps.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby Rob MacK » Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:21 am

The 20 will handle geese at reasonable ranges. I shoot one on occasion. For steel loads the Kent 7/8oz of 2s has been good..

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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby slowshooter » Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:40 am

If you can find Kent matrix 2's they will drop geese pretty well. I've dropped some with KM 5 shot as well - they were fairly close though.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby Jimmy82 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:43 am

Awesome thanks guys, what kind of chokes?
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20 ga on geese?

Postby Frylock » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:00 am

There is a lot of good info in the thread I've linked bellow. Lots of guys are using 20's as their primary duck and goose gun.
viewtopic.php?t=331930


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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby mudpack » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:45 am

The disadvantage of a small gauge shotgun is that it's maximum range is reduced because of the smaller payloads shot out of it. Load your son's 20 up with the heaviest payload of steel 2's you can find (velocity does not matter), keep the shots under 30-35 yards, and he should be able to hit and kill geese handily.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby Jimmy82 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:50 am

Thanks Frylock, I tried to do a search but missed that thread.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby cannon » Wed Mar 05, 2014 10:02 pm

I'd take it a step farther and say jack it up to a full one oz load of #1's for geese. Federal makes a decent load. They're dirty burners, but pretty consistent. For lessers, snows, and specks, you should be good to right at 40 yds. On greaters, I'd knock about 7 yards off that. I have absolutely nothing scientific to base that Intel on, so for any eggheads that can generate a max yardage and penetration for 1's at 1235, post it up.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby 10gaOkie » Wed Mar 05, 2014 10:24 pm

Canon,
So is 1235 the vel you are getting at the muzzle with the Ultra Shok #1s? How are the patterns on big ducks with the 1s? Do you like this load better than Kent 7/8oz #2s?

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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby Jimmy82 » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:25 am

Excellent. I am a believer of reducing range shots are taken at to guarantee successful, ethical kills. It's not called grocery shopping and all my kids will have to learn to take the ups with the downs as they try out hunting. Even if he only gets one bird I'll consider it a successful season.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby cannon » Thu Mar 06, 2014 7:54 am

10gaOkie wrote:Canon,
So is 1235 the vel you are getting at the muzzle with the Ultra Shok #1s? How are the patterns on big ducks with the 1s? Do you like this load better than Kent 7/8oz #2s?

Chris


I never chrono'd it. They claim 1350, but I'd guess it to be more in the 1300 range. The patterns were great, and I love the load on everything down to small ducks inside 40. Pattern was sufficient to drop em at 50, and the #1's have more than enough juice to do the trick at that range. I, personally, found them to be a 100% improvement over the kent 7/8 oz load of #2's.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby mauserfan » Thu Mar 06, 2014 10:54 am

They key is to be hitting the birds in the neck and head with a tighter choke. Just tell him to watch only the head, don't watch the body, and you will be amazed at what the 20 will accomplish. My son shot his 870 youth with a factory mod and it did great. 3" Hevi Steel #6. This holds true for shooting any bird with any gauge...just stay way in front of them. Have fun....mauser
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20 ga on geese?

Postby Frylock » Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:08 am

cannon wrote:
10gaOkie wrote:Canon,
So is 1235 the vel you are getting at the muzzle with the Ultra Shok #1s? How are the patterns on big ducks with the 1s? Do you like this load better than Kent 7/8oz #2s?

Chris


I never chrono'd it. They claim 1350, but I'd guess it to be more in the 1300 range. The patterns were great, and I love the load on everything down to small ducks inside 40. Pattern was sufficient to drop em at 50, and the #1's have more than enough juice to do the trick at that range. I, personally, found them to be a 100% improvement over the kent 7/8 oz load of #2's.

Is there anything specific you didn't like about the 7/8ths Kent load? I like the price and quality of Kent ammo in general and exclusively use their 1&1/4oz loads in my 12ga.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby cannon » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:16 pm

Frylock wrote:
cannon wrote:
10gaOkie wrote:Canon,
So is 1235 the vel you are getting at the muzzle with the Ultra Shok #1s? How are the patterns on big ducks with the 1s? Do you like this load better than Kent 7/8oz #2s?

Chris


I never chrono'd it. They claim 1350, but I'd guess it to be more in the 1300 range. The patterns were great, and I love the load on everything down to small ducks inside 40. Pattern was sufficient to drop em at 50, and the #1's have more than enough juice to do the trick at that range. I, personally, found them to be a 100% improvement over the kent 7/8 oz load of #2's.

Is there anything specific you didn't like about the 7/8ths Kent load? I like the price and quality of Kent ammo in general and exclusively use their 1&1/4oz loads in my 12ga.


It was the 7/8 oz payload aspect and the patterning results I saw. As for the shells, if you keep em dry, they're as good or better than anything else on the market. Kent uses pretty much the exact same components that I use to make a hand-loaded 20-gauge shell. I just found that I have better luck patterning a 1-oz load of 1's, as opposed to a 7/8 oz load of 2's, out of my 20 gauges, and especially if I were chasing geese, I'd prefer the larger diameter shot. In the field, the difference was night and day in favor of the 1-oz load.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby Frylock » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:17 pm

Thanks cannon. I just picked up an M2 20ga and now fully realize what everyone was saying about lack of factory loads....
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby Minneguy » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:20 pm

Rock on with the 20, my first goose came down to a 3 inch #2 federal blue box. All I had was an 870 with a mod choke.


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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby cannon » Thu Mar 06, 2014 2:05 pm

Frylock wrote:Thanks cannon. I just picked up an M2 20ga and now fully realize what everyone was saying about lack of factory loads....


I hand load a full oz of #1's in a federal 3" hull. It's a peach of a load.
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20 ga on geese?

Postby Frylock » Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:34 pm

cannon wrote:
Frylock wrote:Thanks cannon. I just picked up an M2 20ga and now fully realize what everyone was saying about lack of factory loads....


I hand load a full oz of #1's in a federal 3" hull. It's a peach of a load.

Do you know of any factory one oz. loads of number 1's?


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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby cannon » Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:44 pm

I know federal makes em. You can get em from Rogers sporting good online with free shipping for $140/case. You can get Remington's in a one oz load of 2's for $130 shipped.

Caveat: those federals are the dirtiest burning shells I've ever run. Performance was excellent, but I was running them through a beretta 3901 with a somewhat tight chamber, and I kept a bore snake with me at all times. Before I got to the end of a box, the grime and powder residue would gum up the chamber to the point that I had a hard time getting a shell in it. One pull with the snake, and it was good to go, but if you're not paying attention, they'll dirty up your gun to the point that it won't function.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby Frylock » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:34 pm

cannon wrote:I know federal makes em. You can get em from Rogers sporting good online with free shipping for $140/case. You can get Remington's in a one oz load of 2's for $130 shipped.

Caveat: those federals are the dirtiest burning shells I've ever run. Performance was excellent, but I was running them through a beretta 3901 with a somewhat tight chamber, and I kept a bore snake with me at all times. Before I got to the end of a box, the grime and powder residue would gum up the chamber to the point that I had a hard time getting a shell in it. One pull with the snake, and it was good to go, but if you're not paying attention, they'll dirty up your gun to the point that it won't function.

Found them, thanks again cannon!
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby nitram » Thu Mar 06, 2014 10:08 pm

That's the same setup my boys used to bag their first honker, a 20ga youth 870 with a Rem Choke I/C. I think, given your description of your son, he should be able to handle the gun with relative ease. I used a hand load with STEEL and 1oz #2 that chronographed @ 1340fps. Sorry but I can't remember the load # and I haven't loaded that recipe in over 12 years although I still have a few. If I remember right I was duplicating the Remington Nitro-Steel load. This setup would take both honkers and ducks comfortably to 35 yards. I've used this load in a 20 ga 390 on teal and pheasant and couldn't ask for more. Dammit, now I'm gonna have to go and look up the load....
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby wildflights » Fri Mar 07, 2014 9:06 am

I have CSD20 wads on hand and they max out at 380 gr. #3's. I thought that Kent was using the CSD20.

Which wad (load?) are you using that 1oz of steel #1's fit into?
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby cannon » Fri Mar 07, 2014 9:53 am

wildflights wrote:I have CSD20 wads on hand and they max out at 380 gr. #3's. I thought that Kent was using the CSD20.

Which wad (load?) are you using that 1oz of steel #1's fit into?



Vp's and 2024's, but I have absolutely no fear of cramming a one oz load into a wad that is designed for a max 7/8 oz load. I'm not saying it won't scratch a barrel, just that whether it does or doesn't isn't a major concern to me. To be honest, I load 1 3/8 oz loads in MM1275's so I'm probably not the best example for someone who is immaculate about gun care.

Any manufacturer that is carrying 1 oz loads will be planting a good two rows of pellets over the top of the wad in a 20 ga.
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Re: 20 ga on geese?

Postby mudpack » Fri Mar 07, 2014 10:12 am

cannon wrote:I'd take it a step farther and say jack it up to a full one oz load of #1's for geese.

I completely agree with the 1oz loading, but can't see the advantage of the #1 steel shot size.
#2 steel will give you the advantage of more shot in the pattern, and the 2's penetration of #2 at 30-35 yards will be more than adequate on geese....especially if head and neck shots are the rule (which they probably won't be for a new shooter).

Now, if you can't find a 1oz/#2 load, and #1 is all you can buy, then absolutely go for it.
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