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I recently accquired a 1400 winchester with a full choke barrel. Can I use a #3 or#4 load for ducks and be ok? I have searched the web and it seems the jury is split.
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While you'd probably be safe, if I were you I'd have a gunsmith open that Full choke up to Modified. That way you could use any steel load with complete confidence. The cost would be minimal and the resulting patterns would most likely be much better, too.
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Of course with that gun a ring bulge won't hurt the value much.
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If you are going to stay with 3 or 4 size steel shot, you should not have a problem BUT, that also depends on the wad being used....
By HIS stripes, we are healed...
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I have a 1400 20 gauge youth built in the early 80s and it has removable chokes... and the full choke I have for it is approved for steel. If your gun is older then I'd suggest reaming it open to a imp. Mod. I honestly don't know if any fixed full barrel was ever made to be steel okay but I seriously doubt it. On another note I know a few guys that have shot #4 shot steel out of wing masters with fixed fulls since steel became law and have yet to wreck anything. I've also a full barrel for my Wingy and shot steel out of it for years before buying a wadlock barrel. That full barrel is still the exact same on the mic too. But I've also seen the destruction of those barrels and I'm guessing they did it by using bigger shot for a lot of goose hunting... or were just less fortunate. Hope this helps. Jake J.
Coots are the ugly bar whores of duck hunting... they're easy, plentiful, taste and smell just as good as any, and are always there when your itching for some action. Everyone secretly loves to blast em but only the bold take pride.
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I shot my Winchester 1400 with a full choke for years and never had a problem. My favorite load was Xpert #4.
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It has been my experience that small shot through a fixed full choke does no damage. That said... The gun is not a valuable gun anyway. The worst thing that could happen is you bulge the choke and it would then shoot better with large shot! Full chokes do not shoot BB. BBB and T's as well as a more open choke so if you need the bigger shot, you might look around on E-bay for a modified choke barrel or a barrel with choke tubes.
Count all the times you shoot a bird on the water. This will teach you about how effective the shells you think are so great are.
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