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Old January 27, 2010, 02:16 PM   #1
jesus5150
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Sawing off

Ok so i'm sure this is another "Go search!" Question, but i looked and couldn't find an answer. I"m just looking for some clarity on the topic of sawing off shotguns.

I want to buy a cheap double barrel and make it as short as possible, For literally no reason. I just think it'd be fun to have and shoot, and it'd be a fun project as well. My issue is that I don't want to break the law. So can I cut the barrel and the stock? I know there's a law about 18" but is that overall? I'd like to shorten the barrel as much as possible and then shorten the stock as well. I'm sure the days of a pistol grip sawed off are long gone thanks to the gang bangers huh? I'd just like a short lesson on the specifics. I live in Wa and OR (depending on the time of year)

Oh and i'd also like to know where to find a cheap shotgun, I have a benelli but i'd be a fool to saw that thing down. What's a reliable CHEAP Pump or double barrel that i could make a HD/Fun gun out of? (12ga)
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Old January 27, 2010, 02:20 PM   #2
Chipperman
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18" is the barrel minimum.

Just buy a coach gun. They are about as short as you can get without a Tax Stamp (unless you want a pistol-grip only).
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Old January 27, 2010, 02:25 PM   #3
jesus5150
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The barrel minimum, So can I cut the barrel down to 18" and then cut the stock down too?
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Old January 27, 2010, 02:26 PM   #4
hogdogs
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!8 on the barrel, 26 overall... On a SXS, the 2 are not always possible... one or the other. Barrel at 18 and stock cut to PGO may be under the 26.
Brent
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Old January 27, 2010, 02:27 PM   #5
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18" barrel length, 26" overall length - measured as a straight line along the barrel, NOT on a diagonal from muzzle to pistol grip.

Be aware - cut your barrel to at least 18.5 AFTER you have measured it a bout 60 bazillion times to make sure of the length. Realize also, most barrels are not straight tubes on the outside, but tapered. Without the proper jig, you can wind up cutting the barrel improperly, resulting in it throwing any semblance off a pattern of the mark. You will also have no choke at all, and the barrel ends will need finishing and a cold bluing.

Have fun, but stay safe
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Old January 27, 2010, 02:28 PM   #6
hogdogs
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Cutting the stock makes the gun just a toy... Leaving the stock (possibly cut an inch or 2 off) makes for a fine defensive weapon.
Brent
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Old January 27, 2010, 02:30 PM   #7
Don H
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Quote:
The barrel minimum, So can I cut the barrel down to 18" and then cut the stock down too?
As long as the total length is more than 26". Barrel length is measured by dropping a dowel down the barrel and against the breech/bolt face. A bit of extra length is a good thing.
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Old January 27, 2010, 03:55 PM   #8
cohoskip
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A toy?

I don't consider my l8" SxS with cut off stock a toy.

I doubt if a BG on the wrong end of it would either...
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Old January 27, 2010, 04:38 PM   #9
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I thought it was 18.5 inches on the barrel. I could be wrong though, shotguns are not my specialty.
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Old January 27, 2010, 05:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
I thought it was 18.5 inches on the barrel.
18" barrel. 26" overall.
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Old January 27, 2010, 05:36 PM   #11
jesus5150
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Wow great advice guys, I'm new to shotguns and I don't have alot of shoulder time in. I heard a guy talking about how he cut the stock off of his and it just became the most fun weapon in the safe. As a long distance rifle shooter (novice of course, i'm no pro) i know the importance a stock provides. Can you guys give me any thoughts or Pro/cons of shortening or possibly eliminating the stock?
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Old January 27, 2010, 05:43 PM   #12
Chipperman
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The legal minimum is 18", but everyone says 18.5 to be safe. You don't want to go to jail for 1/2".
Do a Gunbroker search for Mossberg Persuader. It's an 18.5" barrel, pistol-grip only, 30" overall. Not an NFA weapon.


I've not fired one, but I hear tell it's murder on your wrists.

A stock makes the gun much more controllable and comfortable.
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Old January 27, 2010, 05:50 PM   #13
jesus5150
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Yeah I saw that, i'd like one but i'm trying to stay cheap here. If i'm gonna save for anything it'll end up being for another rifle, i just know it. I always walk in looking for a shotgun and leave with a rifle... I don't get it.
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Old January 27, 2010, 05:54 PM   #14
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Keep in mind that the barrel is measured from the breechface to the muzzle. Close the action, stick a dowel down the muzzle, and where it comes out is the "official" barrel length.

Most manufacturers leave their barrels at 18.5" to give them a bit of wiggle room. If you decide to cut it to 18" exactly, your measurements had BETTER be dead on.
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Old January 27, 2010, 05:56 PM   #15
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I'm not concerned over a half inch... it's the other ten that bug me.
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Old January 27, 2010, 06:12 PM   #16
hogdogs
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Without a stock you are limited to hip shooting or a risky upright hold with out a shouldering.

Also if the hammers and barrel selector is reset by recoil, it may fail to do so similar to "limp wristing" a semi auto handgun.

I also know of quite a few folks who took the action opening lever into the web 'tween thumb and forefinger... many were pretty deep wounds one at least, needing surgery to repair.

Leaving the stock doesn't remove the ability to hip shoot for fun but you retain so many other options.

Brent
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Old January 27, 2010, 09:55 PM   #17
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If you go with a double barrel, you have to solder between the barrels after you cut them.
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Old January 27, 2010, 11:13 PM   #18
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Take a 3/4" wood dowel and push down to FULL

contact with breech face. Mark the end of muzzle, withdraw and measure the mark to end of dowel.
That the proper way to measure that CRITICAL distance, determine where you need to cut and add 1/4". barrel do taper and this keeps you within area to make adjustments.

Use a dry-wall "T - square" to determine where you need to cut the stock for the 26" OAL.

This is what the ATFE uses, BUT are there STATE laws that are more stringent??

Check out before doing anything.
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Old January 28, 2010, 02:04 AM   #19
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dropthehammer: If you go with a double barrel, you have to solder between the barrels after you cut them.

Why is this required?.....and just on the end of the barrel?....thanks
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Old January 28, 2010, 07:00 AM   #20
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solder

Soldering on the end.
Quote:
Why is this required?..
Once you cut the barrels, which are soldered together, you will have a small hole between the two at the new muzzle. If you do not seal the hole, water and "stuff" can get in. Also, the soldering would return a tiny bit of strength lost from cutting the original joint. If you are not particularly concerned about appearance, JB Weld would probably work as well.
Despite the romance of shooting a shotgun from the hip - and maybe there are some folk who can do it well - it is a remarkably inaccurate way to shoot. Over the years, I have had the dubious pleasure of watching shooters shoot pistol grip shotguns and "cut down" guns from the hip. I cannot recall any of them hitting the target at which they were shooting. A number of them, I remember clearly, missed the berm behind the target. Your mileage may vary.
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Old January 28, 2010, 08:47 AM   #21
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kno3mike

The main reason to solder is for strength. An old timer told me it was necessary, and I never questioned him. If you have access to a wire edm machine, thats the way to go when cutting doubles and ribbed barrels. Wire edm is an expensive route unless you know somebody, but man do they come out nice, with little to no chance for error, and minimal clean up when your done. Can't beat the old tubing cutter on those plain barrel singles though.
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Old January 28, 2010, 10:28 AM   #22
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Quote:
The main reason to solder is for strength.
That's right. Double barrels are made out of metal that is MUCH thinner than a normal single barreled gun. You really do need that rib soldered down to stiffen up the barrels. There is a good video on Youtube on resoldering a double barreled rib.
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Old January 28, 2010, 02:45 PM   #23
Bill DeShivs
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Cutting a double does not weaken the rib/barrel joint. Everything that is joined on uncut barrels is still joined after the cut. The space between the barrels is hollow.
They do look unfinished if the space is not plugged. The traditional method of doing this is to plug the void with steel wool, and drip molten lead solder into the void. Excess solder is then filed flush.
The more expedient method is to use colored epoxy.
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Old January 28, 2010, 05:08 PM   #24
kno3mike
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Thanks guys...I appreciate the information....the steel wool/solder sounds easy enough....to fill in the gap....(if I ever chop one )
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Old January 28, 2010, 05:49 PM   #25
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You could fill out ATF Form 4 and buy this: http://www.serbu.com/top/superShorty.php
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