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Old January 6, 2012, 09:45 PM   #1
troy_mclure
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best shotgun for recoil sensitive?

my girlfriend enjoys shooting, and is interested in shooting clays and hunting birds(duck, pheasant, etc...).

she has shot my mossy 9200(gas operated semi auto) with light bird loads, but the recoil is a bit much for her.

she is also a small gal(110lbs) so a heavier gun wouldnt be good for her to lug around.

im thinking a semi 20ga, but i dont have much experience with 20ga, except a single shot slug gun.
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Old January 6, 2012, 10:25 PM   #2
M4BGRINGO
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I have two Remington 1100's, one is 12g, the other 20g. Very little difference in the recoil between the two guns. I think part of that reason is the 20g is a lot lighter than the 12g and does not absorb the recoil as much.

My wife has an 870 which has more recoil than the 1100. I put a good recoil pad on her gun and it made a world of difference. Best $30-some I ever spent, according to her at least.

If you get a pump 20g and do your own lighter load and a good recoil pad she may like that. Many semis won't cycle correctly with light loads, pumps won't care.

I have a VERY nice recoil setup on my O/U, but it goes for around $700 installed, more money than a lot of guns cost. I would only do this mod on a gun you plan on keeping forever.
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Old January 6, 2012, 10:27 PM   #3
oneounceload
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She needs to shoot the heaviest gun she can handle coupled with the lightest load that works the gun

THAT will lead to the lightest recoil
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Old January 6, 2012, 10:45 PM   #4
lambertsteeth
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I would recommend a 20 ga. auto.

The Berettas shoot smooth and light. I have shot sporting clays with several shooters, who have even have aftermarket recoil reduction systems installed on them to further reduce the felt recoil. Gas guns will handle the recoil red. systems much better than the inertia system gun (Benelli) will.

I personally feel that, at a high volume, inertia guns are more reliable. Gas guns are more gentle to me. I've owned 3 Berettas. I feel they shoot more gently/smoother than O/Us or inertia autos.
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Old January 6, 2012, 10:55 PM   #5
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My Xtrema2 with the Kickoff system is the lightest shooting 12 I've ever shot. Light target loads at the range kick about like a .22, you can literally shoot it for days and not feel it. The Xtrema2 is a bit odd for range use, but there are more appropriate target models now in their lineup that wouldn't look as out of place as my Water fowling gun at the range. (I don't care how it looks, I need the practice for hunting with it.)

I've directly compared it with my Franchi 48AL 28 and the 28 recoils harder than it does using similar loads.

The newer Beretta models have an improved kickoff system and it is supposed to be even better than what I have on my Xtrema2.

So, with all the recoil reducing features and the gas operation, I don't think you can find a softer recoiling shotgun than Beretta on the market today.

A heavy 20 would be a good choice also, browning's are typically heavier than most.
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Old January 6, 2012, 11:04 PM   #6
joegator
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I have a 20 ga. 11-87, very soft shooter.
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Old January 7, 2012, 01:21 AM   #7
k511
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maybe check out the replacement recoil pads for what you already have... My wife also had a problem with the recoil of the shotguns, but after doing some shopping we found that with the Remington SuperCell recoil pads she could shoot the lightweight 12ga without problem...they work well ( wife is only 120lbs), and shoots a lightweight 1100 12ga
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Old January 7, 2012, 05:49 AM   #8
Orphanedcowboy
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My daughter, 80lbs and 5'2", shoots an SX-3 compact, I bought her a Browning Silver but it just didn't fit her, and she shoots 3" 1oz steel loads with out a hitch. My hunting buddy and I both hunt 20s in timber and swap back and forth, his 1100 is a soft shooter as well with the same 3" loads.

I also have a youth Weatherby SA-08 youth 20, I paid $411 shipped for it with a synthetic stock and it would be a really good entry level gun for her.

Any one of the ones listed would be a good choice IMHO.
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Old January 7, 2012, 06:28 AM   #9
Baylorattorney
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Benelli Super Nova 12 gauge pump feels like a 20 gauge. Lot of thought went into the stock and cheek rest of this gun.
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Old January 7, 2012, 08:11 AM   #10
shortwave
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Agree with oneounceload,

Reducing felt recoil can be done very well with a heavy shotgun-light load combo.

My wife is 5'4" and weighs 125lbs. She handles our Rem. 1100's quite well but is not really a fan of the various lighter pumps in the house. She says she would rather shoot slugs from the 1100's then shoot low base shot from the pumps.
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Old January 7, 2012, 01:02 PM   #11
TheKlawMan
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When you say your GF has shot 9200 it's impossible to tell if that means a a box on one or two occasions, less or more. Was she shouldering it correctly? Holding it wrong may be the primary problem. My vote is to get her a lesson from a pro before buying.
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Old January 7, 2012, 02:46 PM   #12
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I have the lightest kicking shotgun around: a heavy O/U with .410 tubes and an air cushion modified stock. If I lower the pressure in the air unit, it's like shooting a BB gun. But, as M4BGRINGO intimated, most folks don't want to spend that kind of money, and the .410 is not for novices.

Remember free recoil and kick are two different things. Free recoil can be calculate and has to do with the weight of the gun and the cartridge's energy -- the kick you feel is more complicated. It's all about the way the shotgun transmits the recoil to you. Ideally, in addition to internally absorbing some of the recoil energy, the gun should minimize the unit stress while maximizing the event's period.

Troy_mclure, have your GF try a properly fit new model Beretta gas auto with 12-ga target loads. If the recoil it too much for her, perhaps you could steer her towards darts or croquette.

Last edited by zippy13; January 7, 2012 at 04:05 PM.
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Old January 7, 2012, 03:46 PM   #13
jmr40
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The gun she has is about perfect, just select the lightest loads, and make sure the stock fits her. When my son was 10 I set out to find a good begnner gun for him. I considered 20 ga, but a pump or single shot in that would kick too much. I started looking at 20 ga gas autos, and that would have been a good choice.

But I stumbled on to a steal on a 24" 9200 in 12 ga. The forend was split and I got it for next to nothing. Called Mossberg and they shipped me a new forend at no cost, had a gunsmith shorten the stock to fit my son and started him out on the lightest recoiling loads I could find. As he got older he moved on up to some heavier loads.

The only real option that would have had less recoil would have been a 20 ga 1100, but not by much. The 12 ended up being a great choice because he got good patterns and was able to be succssful quickly. Much better than a 410, and probably a bit better than a 20.
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Old January 7, 2012, 03:49 PM   #14
jmr40
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Quote:
Benelli Super Nova 12 gauge pump feels like a 20 gauge. Lot of thought went into the stock and cheek rest of this gun.
That is part of it, but lots of weight helps too. The Nova is the heaviest of all the pumps. Not a bad gun if you don't mind the extra weight.
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Old January 7, 2012, 04:57 PM   #15
Baylorattorney
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Regarding the weight of the super nova, I'm sure you are correct that it is the heaviest of the pump actions, 8lbs.. Compared to my red label tho, it feels lighter. I just stand by the truck now anyway, could use the exercise tho. When I first picked up the SuperNova, I just liked it. It fit with me and was a natural pointer too. I liked the sights on it too. I miss a lot more with an O/U and hit consistently with the Benelli, so of course I'm going to like it. I miss my dad's 870 Wingmaster tho come to think of it....
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Old January 7, 2012, 08:05 PM   #16
jmr40
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The Benelli is just over 8 lbs with 28" barrel. A Browning BPS will be near 8 lbs. A Remington 870 runs around 7.5. The Mossberg 500 about 7.25 and the discontinued Winchester 1300 varied between 6.5-7 lbs.

Weights will vary a bit depending on the exact model, stock, and barrel length. Most guys assume anything with a synthetic stock is lighter than wood. That is only true with the $600 kevlar stocks made for big game rifles by companies such as McMillan, MPI and Brown Precision. All of the cheap factory plastic stocks weigh just as much as wood, and very often more. Sometimes much more.

Balance has a lot to do with fooling people into believing one gun is lighter, or heavier than another. A gun with most of the weight in the butt feels lighter than it is.

Don't trust the specs listed on gun manufacturers websites. Most are right, or at least very close, but using my postal scales I've found several that were off quite a bit.
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Old January 7, 2012, 09:00 PM   #17
UPSMike
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Benelli Ultra Light

In terms of reduced weight, nothing beats a Benelli Ultra Light 20ga. It practically disappears when it is shouldered. But truly, find her a gun that fits and that will enable to hit targets. Then work around recoil with lighter loads (you may need to do your own reloading), recoil pads by Limbsaver or Kick-eez, shooting shirts etc. Once she starts to hit targets a lot of the recoil issues will take care of themselves.
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Old January 7, 2012, 11:54 PM   #18
warbirdlover
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A semi-auto for sure. Pumps can kick like a mule.
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Old January 8, 2012, 01:23 AM   #19
Doc TH
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Gas-operated semiauto's have the least recoil. Gun weight is still a significant factor.
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Old January 8, 2012, 02:42 AM   #20
TheKlawMan
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Fit: Fit is important. For example, a long neck shooter may have to mount the butt so that a couple of inches is in the air instead of distributing recoil over a wider area of the shooter's shoulder.

Gun Weight: The heavier the gun the more it absorbs recoil. A trick oneounce taught me was to increase weight by filling empty hulls with shot and inserting them into the magazine tube and in the stock. Gettiong a 20 gauge to lessen recoil may be a mistake if the 2o is built on a lighter frame than the 12.

Butt Pad: A good butt pad can help suck up recoil. I followed Zippy3's suggestion when I got my 870 pump and installed a SuperCell pad for $22. UPSMike named some good products.

Ammo: Fire ligher loads. I went to reloading partially to be able to afford to shoot 1 and 7/8 ounce loads. The WalMart stuff is fine but it is all 1 1/8 ounce and that means more recoil if all have equal velocities such as 1200 FPS. If you go with a auto loader make sure it will cycle light loads.

Action: Auto loaders have much less felt recoil than fixed actions like pumps and over unders. If you go with a auto loader make sure it will cycle light loads.

Clothing: Some shooting apparel dampens recoil. Vests with pads and there are bras for better sex that accept recoil dampening pads.

So get a good fitting, heavy gas auto loader, that will cycle light loads and has a good butt pad. Plan on firing extra light target loads and don't forget a sharp looking vest for your lady.

I feel sorry for the wife of a buddy. Meaning well he bought her a very nice 20 gauge pump. He eve got the ladies model that was smaller and that only made felt recoil greater. For what he spent he could have gotten a very nice autoloader. The recoil is just too much for her. He shoots a Cordoba and I believe is thinking about going to an O/U. If he does I am going to suggest that he gives his wive the Cordoba and trades her barel used 20 gauge pump in.
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Old January 8, 2012, 03:23 AM   #21
UPSMike
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One more thing you can do to reduce Recoil

With most shotguns...have the forcing cones lengthened!
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