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Old October 8, 2009, 09:19 AM   #1
SPUSCG
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Why do people just use bottom barrel on O/U shottys?

Ive noticed this at trap shoots. People only load bottom barrel. Or take off the to one and have a rib a couple inches above barrel. Im wondering how this makes a difference? Ive only shot trap with my 870 and do just fine.
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Old October 8, 2009, 09:46 AM   #2
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The bottom barrel is more in line with the lengthwise axis of the stock. Thus directing the recoil directly into the shoulder with minimal muzzle flip.

As for the high rib. Having the high rib theoretically places the rib in the same location, vertically, as the rib would be on a O/U gun.

As an aside, you may notice the rib on a trap gun is adjustable to change the POA/POI. As a rule trap guns shoot high because of the ever rising targets.

Oh, and by the way, it is a shotgun, not a "shotty" but I will ignore that..........
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Old October 8, 2009, 09:47 AM   #3
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The bottom barrel is a lower bore axis (duh), so the recoil is more in line with the stock.

Depending on the model of shotgun, that could also be the barrel that triggers first (if it isn't selectable).
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Old October 8, 2009, 09:53 AM   #4
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Waterengineer nailed it perfectly. Some folks still use pumps and semi's for trap - most seem to have gone to the single barrel trap gun or use their O/U - especially if they reload
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Old October 8, 2009, 01:15 PM   #5
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Others have already advised - lower barrel is on the lower axis of the gun / recoils directly into your shoulder / in theory less abusive to gun - and less muzzle rise, but muzzle rise is only an issue is you have a 2nd shot to take ( on doubles, or Continental Trap where you can shoot a 2nd shell ).

I prefer an O/U vs a single barrel Trap gun ( like the Browning BT-100 ) - but its the weight, feel, swing characteristics of the O/U that makes it the gun I prefer - and it means I can shoot 1 Trap gun ( for any of the Trap games / singles, doubles, continental ).

I always load the lower barrel on an O/U for a single shot - matter of a consistent pre-shot routine and I leave the barrel selector so the bottom barrel is always the barrel that fires first. I don't switch the barrel selector around / and I stay with the routine of only loading the bottom barrel / partly so I don't screw up and load the Top barrel - and go click - and lose a Target... A lost Target in Trap - is a big loss - since 100 straights are commonplace in competition.

A good solid pre-shot routine is important if you're striving for consistency on your scores. In my case...

1. after I shoot my bird, open the gun, remove spent shell ..
2. head down - focus on ground - or close and rest my eyes - and I don't watch as the next 2 shooters call and shoot.
3. after I hear the 2nd shooters gun go off / I look up - focus my eyes on my hold point - and keeping my gun open, I drop a new shell in lowe barrel chamber(but don't close the gun) - (Its allowed under PITA rules).
4. I watch the 3rd bird / and the 4th shooters bird - for any effect from the wind ( see if it slides, drops, or hovers ...).
5. I close my gun / mount my gun / go to my hold point / Focus / think "nose of target" - Call - and fire...... ( and do it 24 more times ...)

Whatever your routine is / stay with it - and switching the barrel selector back and forth would be a mistake. By the same token - if you want to shoot the upper barrel on an O/U there isn't really any reason not to either - and on a good gun, both barrels will have a Point Of Impact that is the same.

On a gun with a ported barrel - you will notice the lower barrel has more holes in it typically than the upper barrel / to help reduce the muzzle flip - so we fire the bottom barrel first / to keep muzzle flip to a minimum - so we can see the target for the 2nd shell better.
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Old October 8, 2009, 10:26 PM   #6
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Another reason is choke selection. With fixed choke guns (yes, there are still guns made without screw-in chokes) the lower barrel's choke is typically the less constrictive of the two. When wing, or target, shooting it is assumed the target will be going away from you, thus a tighter choke is desirable for the second shot; therefore, the first shot (or singles) is taken with the lower barrel's wider choke.
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Old October 9, 2009, 11:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
yes, there are still guns made without screw-in chokes
And they are typically the higher-end guns to boot......
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Old October 9, 2009, 12:03 PM   #8
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shotty shotty shotty shotty. Not as bad as using clip for mag.
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Old October 9, 2009, 12:24 PM   #9
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Whatever.
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Old October 9, 2009, 02:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oneounceload
Quote:
yes, there are still guns made without screw-in chokes
And they are typically the higher-end guns to boot......
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Yep. For some time, target specific (trap or skeet) shotguns were made with fixed chokes while screw-ins were used only in field guns. To the serious competitor, screw-in chokes were just something more to go wrong and they were to be avoided. There were even reports that no two screw-ins would have the same exact point of impact. An experienced shooter knew what chokes he wanted in his target guns and ordered them accordingly. The factory would provide the fixed chokes you wanted. Or, they came with tight chokes and had them sized to your specifications by a third party. With the custom coke work, these tended to be higher end guns.

Entry level target guns with screw-in chokes have become the norm as sporting clays gained popularity and screw-in chokes improved. Every year, there are fewer and fewer entry level skeet guns marketed with with fixed chokes. To reach a greater market they have screw-in chokes and are called "sporting" guns. My entry-level trap model Remington 1100 and Beretta 682x have factory screw-in chokes. On the other hand, my Perazzi skeet guns have fixed chokes, one being the Tula style. My "sporting" Perazzi started life as a fixed choke skeet gun, but it's been re-stocked and visited with Briley for an assortment of screw-ins. For skeet, I still prefer a fixed choke gun. For trap, the screw-ins are convenient for yardage changes.

1-oz:
I assume you are referring to the Eastern Snowbird, the western variety isn't quite as tasty and tends to be tougher.
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Old October 9, 2009, 02:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
1-oz:
I assume you are referring to the Eastern Snowbird, the western variety isn't quite as tasty and tends to be tougher
The ones from the upper midwest and Canada ARE much less tougher than the ones from the likes of NJ, NY, and MA - must be the water and their diet.......but if simmered a little longer............

Gun writer friend has a P gun - 28 on a 20 frame - built for dove.....016 constriction in each barrel fixed - does it HAMMER sporting targets. Funny how when you read other forums more in tune to sporting how most of the M class folks put modifieds in both barrels and leave them - makes ya wonder if they would have gotten better balance without those extra ounces at the end of the barrels.........
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Old October 9, 2009, 05:10 PM   #12
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Come on now - zippy and oneounce - my friends, you are just being old farts ....( and for a while longer, I'm only 59.....so I'm still a pup ...to you old guys...)

There is no reason - even if I wanted a custom gun ( from Kolar or Krieghoff ) - to order it without screw in chokes and an adjustable parallel comb ..... so you could take the same beautiful custom gun on a Dove or Pheasant hunt, out for some Skeet or out to shoot some Sporting Clays.

I know the adjustable comb and the screw-in chokes aren't "fashionable" on custom guns ....but I'd put them on any custom gun I ordered...so I could use it for everything ( and order it in 30" barrels / with a carrier barrel / and a full set of Tubes in 20, 28ga and .410 - and a full set of screw in chokes for all 4 gagues ( and the 60 lb gun case to haul it around in ).
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Old October 9, 2009, 06:21 PM   #13
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BigJim - I'M the pup here, by a year or two anyway

As to chokes - it would depend on the gun's dedicated purpose. If it's dedicated to one sport - like a pigeon gun, having fixed I/M and F is easier and helps keep the balance properly; same for skeet, etc....

Now if you have one gun and it has to cover multiple uses, then I agree on chokes.
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Old October 9, 2009, 07:04 PM   #14
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Well, see there I go making assumptions again ......

I agree / but even for Trap, although I have a very nice BT-100 / I prefer the Browning XT with screw in chokes .... ( although my BT-100 has screw in chokes too ) but my point is I prefer a versatile gun for Trap ( where I can shoot Singles, Doubles and Continental ) vs just singles.

Want to buy a nice BT-100 ??? ......naw, you don't want it, it has a screw in choke.....

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Old October 9, 2009, 07:35 PM   #15
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Want to buy a nice BT-100 ??? ......naw, you don't want it, it has a screw in choke.....
nah, but only because it's a TRAP gun........I like my GTI and Ultra for sporting
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Old October 9, 2009, 11:14 PM   #16
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BigJim, my friend, I think you're confusing a custom gun with a target specific gun. For a skeet only gun, I think you'll find that shooters with screw-ins don't change their chokes after they get them dialed in. As I said earlier, if you don't need to change chokes, then changeable chokes are just something more to worry about.

Another factor is cost: Even in an upper scale gun, why pay extra for screw-ins if you'll not use them? The same applies to the wood, If a custom fit stock is part of the package, why pay extra for an adjustable stock? My guns with adjustable combs have pretty much stayed put since I got them dialed in.

Our friend in Florida hit the nail on the head when he said it depends on the gun's dedicated purpose. You can't play golf with just one club and you don't need a dozen sticks to shoot pool.
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Old October 10, 2009, 02:31 AM   #17
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As Z13 said in Six. The open barrel will usally be the bottom. If you watch these shooters, and they shoot trap much, at about the 23 or 24 yd line, if they break a weak clay, they will start feeding the upper barrel. This pulls the pattern in at the longer distance. As far as a raised rib on a trap gun, its all about comfort when you are running several hundred to a couple of thousand targets in a day or two. It allows you to carry a more upright position with your neck. Less stress = longer runs.

Last edited by olddrum1; October 10, 2009 at 02:32 AM. Reason: Spelling/grammer
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Old October 12, 2009, 12:54 PM   #18
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I agree with you Zippy on a specific gun for a specific purpose - if it was truly a "Skeet gun only" - then there is no reason to have screw in chokes.

The Adj comb issue is different - ( not you ..) but for guys like me that tend to go up and down 30 or 40 lbs in any given year - some adjustment of the comb may be necessary ( as my face tends to hold some of that fat ..) ...maybe not a huge deal ...but I still prefer to have the adj comb on all of my shotguns ( within reason anyway ).
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Old October 12, 2009, 01:13 PM   #19
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I'd love to be able to go DOWN that 30 or 40....
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Old October 12, 2009, 01:35 PM   #20
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I'm not all that good with a shotgun.I load my Beretta Essential with 2 shells.Even if a pheasant rolls and loses a lot of feathers with the first load of 5's,if he still has control of his head,I shoot him again.:-)
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Old October 12, 2009, 02:37 PM   #21
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Ok, but I'm heading back toward my "hibernation weight again" now .... especially after shoulder surgery this summer / I'll have to work pretty hard to get it back off in the spring ...
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Old October 12, 2009, 08:59 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigJimP
I still prefer to have the adj comb on all of my shotguns ( within reason anyway )
We're fortunate that the market is large enough so you can select what you want, right out of the catalog, without having to pay for custom work. The intermediate grade guns offer a lot more bang for the buck these days.
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Old October 13, 2009, 09:12 AM   #23
BigJimP
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Good observation Zippy - and I agree.
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Old October 15, 2009, 02:13 AM   #24
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Oh, and by the way, it is a shotgun, not a "shotty" but I will ignore that..........
I won't. It's only a "shotty" if you're a pimp, a gangbanger or some backwoods meth cook.
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Old October 16, 2009, 01:54 PM   #25
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It's only a "shotty" if you're a pimp, a gangbanger or some backwoods meth cook.
Or a wannabe of the above.
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