20 Gauge

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20 Gauge

Postby AvianAddict » Tue Dec 13, 2016 7:28 pm

Planning in switching to a 20 gauge for next duck season. Anyone who shoots a 20 what is your favorite load? Preferably not the stuff that is 3 to 4 dollars a shot and no reloads. I do not reload. From looking at all the shells offered the kents and Hevi metal seem less me a good option.


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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby Joe Hunter » Tue Dec 13, 2016 7:50 pm

AA -- Here are some of my pattern numbers to show you what I found when I patterned several different 20-gauage steel loads through my gun with the chokes I usually use for 20-gauge duck shooting.

Pattern numbers from a 20-gauge Browning Citori with 28" Invector-plus barrels and Briley flush chokes (patterns average of five, 30" post-shot scribed circle, yardage taped muzzle to target, and in-shell pellet count average of five).

20 GA 3" KENT FASTEEL LOAD
7/8 oz #4 steel (168 pellets) @ 1,550 fps
30 YARDS -- SK / pattern 109 (65%)
40 YARDS -- IM / pattern 107 (64%)

20 GA 3" FEDERAL CLASSIC MAGNUM STEEL LOAD
1 oz #4 steel (186 pellets) @ 1,330 fps
30 YARDS -- SK / pattern 134 (72%)
40 YARDS -- IM / pattern 127 (68%)

20 GA 3" REMINGTON NITRO-STEEL MAGNUM LOAD
1 oz #4 steel (191 pellets) @ 1,330 fps
30 YARDS -- SK / pattern 134 (70%)
40 YARDS -- IM / pattern 147 (77%)

20 GA 3" ESTATE STEEL LOAD
1 oz #3 steel (147 pellets) @ 1,330 fps
30 YARDS -- SK / pattern 120 (82%)
40 YARDS -- IM / pattern 111 (76%)

20 GA 3" WINCHESTER DRYLOK SUPER-X STEEL LOAD
1 oz #3 steel (145 pellets) @ 1,330 fps
30 YARDS -- SK / pattern 114 (78%)
40 YARDS -- IM / pattern 106 (73%)

20 GA 3" REMINGTON NITRO-STEEL MAGNUM LOAD
1 oz #2 steel (118 pellets) @ 1,330 fps
30 YARDS -- SK / pattern 101 (86%)
40 YARDS -- IM / pattern 99 (84%)

When using a 20ga for ducks it's best to try and keep our shots inside of 40 yards. For small or close decoying ducks #4 steel loads work just fine, for a good all around duck load the #3 steel pellet is a solid performer, and for mallard only shooting I lean towards the #2 steel loads.

Anyway, now you can be the judge, good luck.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby AvianAddict » Tue Dec 13, 2016 8:01 pm

I never shoot outside of 40 for ducks. Nothing worse than breaking a wing beyond 40 and losing a bird. 90% of my shots are within 30.


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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby AvianAddict » Tue Dec 13, 2016 8:03 pm

Thanks for the quick reply!


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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby 3200 man » Tue Dec 13, 2016 8:34 pm

With the patterning some fellas get with (1oz) of 3's in steel shot I question why only 145 or so pellets when (1 oz) of
3's have 163 pellets in that payload ?? Velocity is the name of the game with 3's......for me :thumbsup:
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby BT Justice » Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:08 pm

3200 man wrote:With the patterning some fellas get with (1oz) of 3's in steel shot I question why only 145 or so pellets when (1 oz) of
3's have 163 pellets in that payload ?? Velocity is the name of the game with 3's......for me :thumbsup:

Fast 3's have been doing the deed for me this year in the 16 gauge, knocked off 2 fat mallards and a gadwall with the it before I switched to the big gun. Birds were stone dead except for one mallard drake I had to finish on the water, speed has it's advantages.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby flyndutchman » Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:35 pm

Fast 3's are definitely the way to go for the 20ga. Kent's offering is one of the best with 7/8oz at over 1500 fps. I tried the 1 oz 4's when I started with mine three years ago. Too any wounded birds. Any of the 1 oz 2's that will pattern in your gun will also work. The Rio's are rated at 1400 fps. Have not run them over the chronograph to check. The Federal/Estate 1 oz loads give an honest 1350 average. All these are loaded with good, round shot. If you get the itch to reload, 3/4 oz of 3's in 2 3/4" hulls are getting the job done for me. Another limit of divers fell to these loads this afternoon.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby dla » Wed Dec 14, 2016 11:46 am

AvianAddict wrote:Planning in switching to a 20 gauge for next duck season. Anyone who shoots a 20 what is your favorite load? Preferably not the stuff that is 3 to 4 dollars a shot and no reloads. I do not reload. From looking at all the shells offered the kents and Hevi metal seem less me a good option.


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Here is Dave's list of commercial loads you might find helpful.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby Rick Hall » Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:00 pm

I've been shooting virtually all of my ducks with a 20 for over a dozen seasons, and Kent's Upland Steel 5s have become my confidence round. Greenwings and greenheads generally run first and second in our season's bag, and I've seen no reason to go to bigger shot for the later.

But I'm not fussy about what I shoot my birds with, just how far I'll shoot them.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby HCK » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:04 pm

Any 7/8-1oz load what work you gun do the job in the field. I recommend faster about 1500fps load and number 6-3 shot. If use number 3 then maybe 1oz loads is best to try to get better pellet count.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby Joe Hunter » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:34 pm

[quote="3200 man"]With the patterning some fellas get with (1oz) of 3's in steel shot I question why only 145 or so pellets when (1 oz) of 3's have 163 pellets in that payload ??[/quote]

3200 -- If you are referring to the 145 pellet count in the 1 oz #3 Win Drylok load I listed above, all pellet counts listed above are the true pellet count by averaging 5 shells from the box of shells patterned. As you can see, the Estate load had a similar count of 147 #3s. It isn't unusual for some factory loads to vary and be a little light on pellets. As a side note, I was thinking 1 oz of steel 3s was about 155 pellets.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby dukhntr » Wed Dec 14, 2016 7:07 pm

If your shooting inside of 30 yards, a .20 gauge is a nice gun! I have a Benelli M1 super 90 .20. It seems to pattern well and drop ducks with 3" 2 and 3 shot in winchester dryloks. Factory modified choke. Good luck...
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby LAT88 » Wed Dec 14, 2016 9:37 pm

I always had great success with Kent Fasteel No.3 7/8oz loads.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby dakotashooter2 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 10:14 pm

I like the nitrous but they are a bit overpriced. Fortunately I'm sitting on a 5 - 6 year supply I bought on discount and took advantage of rebates. Now if I could only find a good load recipe for that hull.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby goosepit2007 » Sat Dec 17, 2016 11:17 am

Rick Hall wrote:I've been shooting virtually all of my ducks with a 20 for over a dozen seasons, and Kent's Upland Steel 5s have become my confidence round. Greenwings and greenheads generally run first and second in our season's bag, and I've seen no reason to go to bigger shot for the later.

But I'm not fussy about what I shoot my birds with, just how far I'll shoot them.



Rick,

That would be good.option for 20 gauge , if you do.not reload... with 23/4inch 7/8oz load with on box advertising of 1500 fps!!

28 yards and under body hits would be ok.with this load at 900 ft above see level...but of course wings and neck /head hits will be there as well..i shoot have shot alot of 12 gauge 7/8oz loads of 5 steel gong 1550fps...so with saying that no differrence in 20 gauge!!
here is link:
http://kentgamebore.com/upland-loads/fa ... pland.html


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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby SPatrick » Tue Dec 20, 2016 8:14 am

Picked up a 20 gauge m2 this season, shooting hevi metal 3" #3 with an extended range choke. Choke is a bit tight for my liking, gonna switch to a mod or rob roberts t2 for next season, if I can't get used to this extended range. I was surprised on just how far out you can still connect with this gun though. They are fun to shoot!!! good luck!!!
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby rainingmallards » Sun Dec 25, 2016 7:58 am

AvianAddict wrote:Planning in switching to a 20 gauge for next duck season. Anyone who shoots a 20 what is your favorite load? Preferably not the stuff that is 3 to 4 dollars a shot and no reloads. I do not reload. From looking at all the shells offered the kents and Hevi metal seem less me a good option.


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My son is using Hevimetal 3" 2's and 3's this season. He has killed virtually
every duck "we" big guys have killed with our 12 gauges......I have
really been impressed with both him and the shells
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby goosepit2007 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 12:03 am

SPatrick wrote:Picked up a 20 gauge m2 this season, shooting hevi metal 3" #3 with an extended range choke. Choke is a bit tight for my liking, gonna switch to a mod or rob roberts t2 for next season, if I can't get used to this extended range. I was surprised on just how far out you can still connect with this gun though. They are fun to shoot!!! good luck!!!



Patrick,

I shoot light mod to mod with 23/4 inch 20 gauge 3/4 oz reload going 1500 plus or minus depending on hull with 5,4, and or three steel shot all fall!! buddies shot 12 and ten gauges on few hunts no difference on amount of geese and ducks I dropped and brought to hand compared to way heavier loads!!....but when wind was higher I put in improved mod, same results!!! chokes was Carlson extended chokes, like stated light mod was in all 20 gauges I shot 90 percent of the time with three shot...4 and 5 shot mod 90 percent of time, improved mod all size of shot when wind was really moving along!!

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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby Dave in AZ » Mon Dec 26, 2016 1:16 am

That's a good report goose. I have that same Carlson's LM choke for my 20ga SX3. Win my 20ga SA08 I've just used factory mod so far, but haven't patterned it. But I'm 6 ducks for 8 shots with it so far, so it seems to be working. (HW13#6 handloads).
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby ohio mike » Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:27 am

Kent Bismuth is $15.99 at Cabelas for 10 round box's. Good stuff not to pricey. Don't know how much you shoot.Beats the hell out of steel.
Life is to short to hunt with a ugly gun.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby rainingmallards » Sat Jan 14, 2017 8:55 am

AvianAddict wrote:Planning in switching to a 20 gauge for next duck season. Anyone who shoots a 20 what is your favorite load? Preferably not the stuff that is 3 to 4 dollars a shot and no reloads. I do not reload. From looking at all the shells offered the kents and Hevi metal seem less me a good option.


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My son uses Hevimetal 3" 4's out of his 20 gauge and hammers them......
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby jsh909 » Sat Jan 14, 2017 1:13 pm

No kidding, I would have never guessed.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby mudpack » Tue Jan 17, 2017 8:36 am

rainingmallards wrote:My son uses Hevimetal 3" 4's out of his 20 gauge ......


rainingmallards wrote:My son is using Hevimetal 3" 2's and 3's this season.


I guess you could say he uses whatever is available, eh?

Rick Hall is right; the range at which you take the shots with a 20ga is more important that what load you are shooting. The lighter the payload, the less range it will have...regardless of the shot material.
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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby goosepit2007 » Tue Jan 17, 2017 12:58 pm

mudpack wrote:
rainingmallards wrote:My son uses Hevimetal 3" 4's out of his 20 gauge ......


rainingmallards wrote:My son is using Hevimetal 3" 2's and 3's this season.


I guess you could say he uses whatever is available, eh?

Rick Hall is right; the range at which you take the shots with a 20ga is more important that what load you are shooting. The lighter the payload, the less range it will have...regardless of the shot material.



that load that Rick hall mentioned 7/8 oz of fives going 1500 fps even if it is actually little less fps will kill to 28 yards(900ft above sea level) easly... done a lot of testing with 12 gauge with five shot same 7/8 oz and was lights out...most people can not shoot that well past 30 yards anyways...20 gauge does not make difference ....over 12 gauge same shot charge..same results...that is if your 20 gauge patterns the load without holes ect.

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Re: 20 Gauge

Postby mudpack » Wed Jan 18, 2017 7:48 am

goosepit2007 wrote:that load that Rick hall mentioned 7/8 oz of fives going 1500 fps even if it is actually little less fps will kill to 28 yards(900ft above sea level) easly... done a lot of testing with 12 gauge with five shot same 7/8 oz and was lights out...most people can not shoot that well past 30 yards anyways...20 gauge does not make difference ....over 12 gauge same shot charge..same results...that is if your 20 gauge patterns the load without holes ect. goose

You are right, goose; it's the payload that counts, not the size of the barrel it comes out of. That's why larger gauge guns are more effective than smaller gauge guns: the larger gauge guns can utilize a larger payload. A larger payload means longer effective range, all else being equal.
The main reason 20 gauge guns are generally shorter-range guns is that they can only throw lighter payloads. They are also less efficient for the average shooter at shorter ranges because the lighter payload means you have to choke tighter to keep pattern density up....and a tighter choke means less room for error, pointing-wise.
At very short ranges....less than 20 yards....it makes little difference if you are shooting a 10 gage with 1.5oz of shot or a 20 gage with 7/8oz of shot.
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