Trap shooting newbie

Trap, Skeet, Sporting Clays; pistol/rifle target shooting, to plinking cans with a bb gun.

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Trap shooting newbie

Postby Pavel » Mon Mar 22, 2010 5:38 pm

I have just got into hunting waterfowl and purchased a Benelli Supernova. I have not been able to look at it just sit there until next September. So, I decided that I will join my local gun club to ensure that I am shooting well when the season starts. I have made it out to the range 3 times and shot trap: also I am now hooked to shooting trap.

1st time: With IC 13/25 & 14/25 (Was told that I should have the mod choke in my gun, if not full at that time).
2nd time: With Mod 14/25 & 16/25
3rd time: With Mod 17/25 & 19/25

My question is should I just stay with the Mod factory choke or should I be trying the full?
Are there any aftermarket chokes that would be worth taking a look at for my gun?
Should I just focus on shooting the same choke at the range as what I will be using in the field?

Lastly, I find that I am shooting a little later than most with a "pull...followed by a slow one one thousand count", would the 7.5's help me out more than the 8's with the farther down range shots?

Thanks in advance for any input
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby kjm1022 » Tue Mar 23, 2010 7:22 am

I'm really not a Trap shooter, I've done it a few times. I mostly shoot skeet as it is a little better practice for duck hunting. All the trap shooters I know, shoot a full choke because the target is a going away shot and depending how far you are standing, it can be a longer shot so a tighter pattern is more desirable. That being said, you really need to pattern your new shotgun if you haven't done so yet. You should use the chokes and loads you'll be shooting in the fall so you know how it will throw steel at duck. Start with your factory chokes and if they dont produce a good pattern you can look into aftermarket ones. If you're shooting over decoys, an imp cyl or mod would be fine at 25-35 yards. :thumbsup:
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby waterfowlhunter » Tue Mar 23, 2010 7:50 pm

#8's are fine for trap, I use 7.5's myself and a full choke but others like a mod for trap. Just keep shooting and pay attention to your shots, Mainly your misses. At some point you will "know" you missed sometimes even before you pull the trigger. It sounds funny but once you set the finger in motion and then realize your no longer "on" it is too late. :yes:
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby apexhunter » Fri Mar 26, 2010 7:01 am

With your situation, getting used to a new gun and using trap as the practice medium, I would stay at the 16 yard line with either #8 or #7.5 loads through the modified choke and shoot to your heart's content. This is more than sufficient to break any target on the range as you will be breaking the targets between 30 and 40 yards which is definitely within a good range for a mod...plus you can always change to the full as you progress and possibly move back on the field.

Years ago I shot hundreds of rounds of trap per month with a 28" modified barrel and had no problem holding my own in handicap matches against some international caliber shooters. Even the best of the best I shot against used a 30" IM on his release trigger Perazzi from the 27 yard line, so shooting a modified will not be a detriment.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby Force Fetch » Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:53 pm

I shoot a lot of trap and your scoring problems and late shooting is all in your set up and technique. First of all foot position on the station is important, so is where you place the bbl of your gun over the trap house, and it does move with each station, and third where you look for the target in hard focus causes you to shoot a little late if you are looking at the trap house. I shoot a .025 restriction on my singles gun to the 27 yard line, that is a light Mod, but I do know how the gun patterns with my hand loads and AA Light Target. Find out who at the club (one person) that can give you some basic pointers, get comfortable on the field and practice your set up and the broken targets will come.
One more thing, the rear sight on a shotgun is your eye, so you must mount the gun the same way everytime in order not to move your site picture. Welcome to the reason I do not have a lot of money, I squandered it 1 1/8 oz at a time.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby Sagebrush » Sun Apr 25, 2010 8:45 pm

I agree that the basics of proper footing and balance are a key to good shooting. Also placement on the house at the 5 stations
will help pick up birds. Proper gun fit is always nice to have ,if possible so you don't have to adjust your patterns. While you are at it, waste a few shells at a target board to see where your different loads impact. Nothing worse than shooting and NOT KNOWING where the heck your pellets are ending up!!

If you have a single barrel.......fine but if a SxS or an O/U be sure you know where each barrel impacts at 30 yards since they
may not shot the same due to machining or the chokes.

It also helps ,that when you call for the bird, to wait til you see it............then move your barrel and go after it!! Many shooters
try to guess where the bird will go and have to reverse their barrel motion to get the correct swing. Trap loads have plenty of speed to catch up with the clays, take your time and do it right the 1st time..................

As for shot size..........9's for skeet, 8's for general trap and 7 1/2's for cold weather or high winds or the 27 yard line if the 8's will not cut it. 3 Dram , 1200fps loads are not really needed and just add recoil where a 1oz 8 at 1180 will work for almost all general trap shots.

I reload and today at the trap club I was getting 25's at the 16 yard line with 7/8oz 8 @ 1145 and 1oz 8's @ 1090fps with a full choke in my O/U.

Practice is the main thing....................Good shooting.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby Pavel » Mon Apr 26, 2010 5:34 pm

Thanks for all the great feedback. This is great information that I can take with me to the range. This week I am going to go and pattern my gun for starters with different loads and chokes to start off in the right direction.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby huntman » Tue Jul 20, 2010 6:04 pm

wen i shoot trap i use an Improved modified ive heard its a trap shooters choice
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby huntall6 » Fri Jul 23, 2010 12:26 am

the best advice i can give you is to pull the trigger as much as possible. practice makes perfect :thumbsup: . also if you are trying to train for duck hunting... when you break a clay, keep your check against the stock and try to blast the biggest piece of the broken clay. this helps with flocks breaking up after the first shot. oh and have fun with it :beer: .
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby pavlof » Sun Jan 01, 2012 3:02 am

You are shooting about where most people with hunting experience seem to start in trap. One of the best suggestions I can give is to find someone at the trap range that will be willing to watch you and give you feedback on what you are doing and give you pointers on doing things correctly. That helped me a lot. You might also buy a basic book on trap shooting -- that will give you some good basic advice -- also, go to the internet for adviced on basic technique.

I shot with a very tight full-choked gun for many years and had very good scores. A few years ago, I picked up an over/under with a modified/full arrangement, and have used the modified ever since from the 16 through 22 yard distances. Lots of other shooters seem to be gravitating toward the modified chokes at the moderate positions. My birds often just disappear when I am really on, with either 8's or 7 1/2's. The wider spread of pellets doesn't seem to hurt, either.

Keep it up.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby Sagebrush » Mon Jan 02, 2012 12:27 am

When starting out and learnig the basics and flight angles, the i/c or Mod choke has a wider pattern that is more forgiving
with leads that are off a little from where the pattern should be for clean "Kills" on birds. The main thing is to be hitting birds,so one can learn what is needed to make consistant breaks,by where the clays are being struck and making the proper
adjustments.

As a shooter improves a full choke should be used to fine tune his angles and leads,since the pattern at 35 yards should go from 40 inches down to a 35 inch diamiter, +/- and any bad habits can be fixed , to help raise your scores, even more.

Many practice with 1oz trap loads and then go into the field or trap shoots with 1 1/8 oz pay loads and a mod choke to increase the odds of a hit,if they are off a little or the bird drops or flairs for some unknown reason, causing the pattern to not be centered on the target.

Main thing it to go out and have fun............don't worry about dropped birds, just try to make your next shot better than your last and you will be on your way to better shooting.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby charlie beard » Mon Jan 02, 2012 8:20 am

As Sagebrush said pratice,pratice,pratice.
When you get to the point you miss a bird and know exactly why you missed it then you are well on your way.
My opinoin concentration is the key to being a good shooter.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby Sagebrush » Mon Jan 02, 2012 12:55 pm

I agree with Charlie Beard, he hit the nail on the head !!

Concentration is the key to better shooting.

Don't get distracted on what is going on around you, block out the noise and chit chat, which by the way,there should be NONE!!

Try not to get mad or upset, it will only make you think of bad things........... be possitive in your thoughts.

" I will break " is a lot better for the mind than........."I hope I don't miss.." Rather......
" I am going to hit this bird so hard it will be nothing but DUST" !!
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby atr04screw » Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:49 pm

As the others have said, find a posture that is comfortable to shoot, and concentrate. The way you stand and how you hold the gun will affect your shooting more than a choke. In my opinion, a choke doesn't really make that much of a difference because a clay will break with only 1 or 2 pellets hitting it, but I tend to like shooting a more open choke to open up the pattern. I shoot a Comp-n-Choke skeet choke, and shoot 24s and 25s on a regular basis. I have tried with different chokes, and noticed that I shoot the same with anything from a skeet choke to a turkey choke.
The best thing you can do is just experiment with it. Shoot different chokes, different shells, different positions, and just find what you like. Once you find what you like and are comfortable with, your shooting will improve. Also, shoot some skeet if you are looking to practice for bird hunting. I can shoot 25s regularly with trap, but I miss a good bit of birds still because I just started duck hunting this season.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby Finprof » Wed Jan 11, 2012 12:46 pm

I ahve been shooting trap for about 25 years and am a member of three clubs so that I can shoot four or five days a week. Most of my hunting friends who shoot well on live birds will get 13-15 when they first shoot trap so you are doing OK.

After taking courses from three or four of the big dogs, most say that choke doesn't matter much. Kay Ohye says that when you miss, you miss by three feet, so the extra couple of inches from a modified isn't going to help much. He also says that the main requirement for being a good trapshooter is lots of time and even more more money. Basically, anyone with enough time and money to practice can become a really good trapshooter.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby mawtrfowler » Wed May 23, 2012 10:02 pm

I would stick with the modified choke as it gives you a little bit more room for error than a full choke.
In terms of when your shooting the bird, IMO the best place to get it is right as it reaches the top of its trajectory that ways its not moving up much and it hasn't started to drop yet. After years of competitive trap that's what i've decided on through experimentation. Any later and its dropping fast and requires you to hold under it and any earlier and its still and requires you to lead over it.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby CowboyUpOutdoors » Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:01 am

I have been trapshooting for awhile and honestly I've seen people shoot fulls and hit 15s then switch to a mod and shoot 20s and vise versa. You don't really know if its a good choke for you until you shoot acouple rounds with each. If you can pick up the clays really fast then your more of a mod/imp. But if you like to pick them up slower and take your time then the full is for you. And if your shooting 1 1/2 oz shells try shooting 1 oz, that helped my scores too. Otherwise a benneli supernova is an all around great gun for everything. Hope this helped and good luck this fall and on shooting. :thumbsup:
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby waterfowlhunter » Fri Jun 15, 2012 4:03 am

CowboyUpOutdoors wrote: if your shooting 1 1/2 oz shells try shooting 1 oz, that helped my scores too. :thumbsup:


:huh:

1-1/2 oz loads for trap? I do not know of any clubs that allow this. 1-1/8 Max anywhere around here and I do not think I would want to shoot a couple of rounds of trap with 1-1/2 oz loads anyway :lol3:
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby CowboyUpOutdoors » Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:05 am

Sorry I meant 1 1/8. My bad.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby OSDaisyCutter » Fri Jun 22, 2012 7:33 pm

Trap is a full choke to even extra full choke game. That being said, I have run all 25 targets multiple times with an improved cylinder choke. My best scores are shot with a Browning Diamond grade extra full, whether it be from the 16 or the 27.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby 3200 man » Sun Jun 24, 2012 4:17 pm

When you wake-up from that dream , you'll understand ,from 27 yds that is a really hard thing to do with regulation loads !
Nice try ,though !
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby waterfowlhunter » Mon Jun 25, 2012 5:24 am

3200 man wrote:When you wake-up from that dream , you'll understand ,from 27 yds that is a really hard thing to do with regulation loads !
Nice try ,though !


I guess I am jumping in on this one too, I have shot trap from all lines with most chokes including a full and find that I have a better score from all positions with a full choke. BUT I am not a trap shooter, I do not have a fancy high rib gun and i do not shoot the birds 10' out of the house like I see a lot of trap shooters do. I use 1250fps 1-1/8 oz of 7.5 and I shoot the bird about 1/2 way thru its travel. Not sure if that makes the difference but it works for me. I have shot many 25's but a lot more 22's than 25's. I only shoot trap about 4-5 times a year and only shoot about 150 rounds at each sitting so I am not the expert by a long ways but I think everyone should try several methods and settle on one that works best for them without someone telling them to "wake-up"

My Dad shot trap for over 30 years and had a LOT of 100 straights, He used a 30" Fixed full choke browning auto-5

Regulation trap loads 1290 ft/s for 1-1/8 oz, 1325 ft/s for 1 oz, and 1350 ft/s for 7/8 oz if I remember right :huh:
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby 3200 man » Mon Jun 25, 2012 10:16 am

I'm not rag-ing someone playing around ,shooting an IC at the 27 td line .I'm saying anyone that thinks he can compete with
that choke would be at a disadvantage with Real Trap Shooters and most likely giving away thier money ! So , if you have
the skill , don't try something that has been proven over the last 75 years . Wake-up !
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby waterfowlhunter » Mon Jun 25, 2012 5:07 pm

3200 man wrote:I'm not rag-ing someone playing around, shooting an IC at the 27 td line .I'm saying anyone that thinks he can compete with that choke would be at a disadvantage with Real Trap Shooters and most likely giving away thier money ! So , if you have the skill , don't try something that has been proven over the last 75 years. Wake-up !



:bow: ok Mr. attitude if you say so it must be the ONLY way to practice :bow: but you need to lighten up on DHC and drop the little "wake up" attitude. Not only is it rude to the other poster it is completely unecessary :thumbsup: Play nice or go somewhere else.

Who said anything about competing anyway? and if it was about competition I know several guys the compete regularly in sporting clays (some are instructors at the local clubs) and they practice with full & Full then shoot competition with a IM over Mod or Mod over LM.
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Re: Trap shooting newbie

Postby 3200 man » Mon Jun 25, 2012 7:31 pm

If anyone wants to know the capable choke for a distance ,look at the OSP website and it will give you a better idea !
Some fellas don't understand what chokes do so, I hope guys just looking for information on this forum will be lead
in the right way ? I know some don't !
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