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Old January 1, 2005, 07:58 PM   #1
bill k
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Duck hunting choice

Next duck season I've been asked to join a local duck club. I guess I need to get a new shot gun. Any reason to buy a new firearm is a good reason right?

I'm an avid deer and varmit hunter, but have been told my 22-250 or 7mm mag is not the firearm of choice. So what should I get. To get an idea how long it's been since I've duck hunted, steel shot was not required, 3 inch mag was as powerful as you could get, and I never even heard of a legal 10 guage.

I have a winchester ranger 12 guage and a remington wingmaster 12 guage, both only shoot 2 3/4 inch shells.

I prefer an auto with a starting budget of $500.00.

There are lots of geese in the area also.

Any suggestions?

Last edited by bill k; January 4, 2005 at 04:12 PM.
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Old January 1, 2005, 10:07 PM   #2
HSMITH
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Can you afford Hevi-Shot or Bismuth? If so your Wingmaster is a fine choice. If the exotic shot is too much for the budget look for a used SuperX2 or a Beretta 390/391. They are as good as auto shotguns get.

I duck hunt a lot and hunt HARD, I have been through a pile of shotguns looking for THE one. THE shotgun for me is a SuperX2 3.5".
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Old January 2, 2005, 11:11 AM   #3
bill k
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I don't have a clue what Hevi-shot or Bismuth is. If it's shot shells, all I ever had to worry about was the size, #4 or #6 size, high base. I like to start new hobbies with the least chance of failure so in reguards to price of shells that would not be a factor.
I wouldn't buy a used firearm unless it was a collectable.
The $500.00 price tag I mentioned was to get a starting point. I guess I need a recomendation on a quality auto loader and an idea of the price. I've always been a Remington fan but I know there are others out there.
I know about choke size but I'm unsure of modern chokes and what to get.
I'm very knowlegeable about rifles and pistols but am clueless about shotguns for waterfoul hunting.
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Old January 2, 2005, 12:52 PM   #4
HSMITH
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Hevi and Bismuth run about $2 per shell, they are very effective and have long range capabilities that steel shot does not. Steel will run about $.75 per shot for premium high velocity loadings.

A 3" 12 when using steel shot big enough to kills ducks and geese beyond 35 yards will run out of pellets in the pattern at 35 yards or so, if you drop down to a smaller size to get more pellets in the pattern you will not have pellets big enough to kill ducks and geese beyond about 35 yards. The 3" 12 is a 35 yard gun with steel shot. The 3.5" 12 brings that number up to about 45 yards, shells are more expensive and recoil harsher. The 10 3.5" guage is about the same as the 3.5" 12, differences are very slight.

If you will be on private land or leased land with limited competition and decent numbers of ducks the 3" 12 is plenty. You will have more opportunities to shoot ducks over the decoys than someone on public ground with lots of competition for the birds. On public ground the 3.5" is a better choice IMO. Steel 4's in a high velocity premium loading work well over decoys. For longer shots #2's work well out to about 45 yards. For larger geese #2 is about minimum and BB or BBB work well out to about 45 yards.

If a 3" gun fits what you will be doing I would recommend the SuperX2 in a 3" or 3.5", the 3" will be about $600 and the 3.5" will be around $650-700. The Beretta 390 and 391 are also great shotguns, about $550 for a synthetic stock 390 at Walmart, and about $700 for a 391 at most outlets. The 3.5" Beretta is about $1000. All of these guns can be found on sale for less than I listed, just check around. Buying a 3.5" gun will allow you to do most anything that can be done with steel shot, yet does not prevent you from using shells from light 2 3/4" field loads all the way through the heaviest 3.5" magnums.

Chokes will be taken care of with a new gun, most come with 3 and some come with 5. Which one to use depends on range, shell choice, and your particular gun. You will have to pattern the gun to see what works best for your gun with the load you have chosen.

Hope this helps.
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Old January 2, 2005, 02:00 PM   #5
bill k
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Thank you very much for all the info. Now everything I've heard is making sense.
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Old January 2, 2005, 08:51 PM   #6
HSMITH
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Anytime Bill. Let me know if I can help with anything.
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Old January 4, 2005, 08:15 PM   #7
drufus
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Remington just came out with an 11-87 "Sportsman". It has a matte finish barrel and action and a synthetic stock. The 11-87 is a heck of a gun, and alot closer to your desired price range that some of the other guns mentioned. Good luck, whatever you buy.
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