Today I shot skeet for the first time, and I used my Winchester M12 with its fixed full choke. The elderly gentlemen were nice guys and coached me on how to attack the clays. I could tell that even though I showed up with a pump gun, it was okay with them because it was the respected Model 12 in the company of their Beretta O/U's. I shot about 30% the first round, but with their coaching, I shot about 60%. I didn't find the full choke a handicap at all, albeit I was shooting singles, rather than pairs as I was new. But the full choke definitely trained me to swing better, point and aim better, and overall be more on the ball than with a looser choke constriction.
As for the Model 12 itself, it's a masterpiece for a pump gun! Way better balanced and handling than my Mossberg 500. Everything is smooth, locks up and *pings* when the safety is clicked or the action locks up.
Also, since you guys warned me that the threads in the receiver can get worn, I cleaned the barrel from the muzzle without taking the gun down. I hope that none of the powder residue gets stuck in the receiver. I brushed the receiver's insides with a toothbrush and mopped up with a patch soaked in Hoppes. Then oiled.
For now, the M12 is my new favourite gun. Next time the Ithaca 37 will get its turn.
I also now think Skeet is more fun than Trap because for the same price, skeet lasts about 20-30 minutes vs 10 minutes in trap, and you get more varieties of shots.
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