View Full Version : How to get started in trap shooting?

August 6, 2002, 05:10 PM
I picked up my 870. I saw it used at the gun shop for a song. Wingmaster 870TC with 30" barrel. The thing is huge. I've been wanting to try trap shooting, and this gun seemed to be a compelling reason to start.

Now that I got a trap gun, what's the best way to get into the sport. I picked up a bunch of shells and will be bringing it down to the outdoor range. Never fired a shotgun before so I want to get some practice with stationary targets. Would you suggest lessons or instruction or should I just start jump in.


August 6, 2002, 05:20 PM
Instruction is always best. Do you go to a range with a trapmaster to give you some tips.

If you pattern your shotgun on a piece of carboard or butcher paper from 20 yards or so, that will give you a good idea where the pellets are going. Very helpful. Shoot at a blcak dot in the center of the paper.

I use #8 shot. It works best in my gun with the modified choke I use for trap.

The instructor usually takes shooters to a hillside first and has them break some stationary clays at 20 yards or so.

Don't be discouraged if it takes a while to break more than a handful per round. Once you start busting them at all, it gets easier faster.

You will get more tips from the masters here from whom I got my first info. Stay tuned. You're in the right place.

Also, try searching the archives for "trap" and "shotgun mounting"

Best of luck.

Dave McC
August 7, 2002, 06:26 AM
Congrats on the fine trapgun, Yar. I started a thread about a year ago here about "Getting Started at Trap..." that may help you. Another on "Proper Mounting Techniques", same same.

I strongly recommend getting a lesson or two BEFORE you start to build any bad habits.

And stick to 1 oz loads until your form's good. A flinch is much easier to acquire than to lose.


August 7, 2002, 09:14 AM
Go to the range. Try and see if someone there can help you with the basics. That's what I did to get started.

I don't necessarily agree with Dave regarding 1 oz shells. The lighter the load the less chance of hitting something and it's hard enough not to get discouraged when you are starting out. I suggest the regular 1 1/8 oz. load.

Don't go out thinking you are going to hit stuff when you first start. Try to get the technique right.

Good luck and have fun!


August 7, 2002, 10:43 AM
Yar, if you want to share your location, you would probably get more specific advice. Who knows, you might find a TFL member that would spend some time with you to get you going?

August 7, 2002, 06:25 PM
I'm presently living in Salinas, CA. I will be moving to the Kalispell, whitefish, Flathead lake area of Montana at the end of the month. Specificly the town is called Dayton, MT

August 9, 2002, 01:41 PM
Dave is correct about the one ounce loads offering a significant and worthwhile reduction in recoil. This will make your initial exposure to trapshooting much more pleasant. And the one ounce loads will break targets almost as well as the heavier kicking 1-1/8 ounce loads. Go for it! And welcome to the sport! ;)