View Full Version : O/U vs. S/S pros, cons for pheasant

September 3, 2002, 10:52 AM
I was just dreaming of a double for pheasant hunting here in Western Iowa and over in Northeast Nebraska. I know a good double is going to run at least $1,000, so I'm saving.

The online CDNN investments catalog has a Fabarm Classic Lion for $799. Sounds like a good deal, so why is it too good to be true? (There has to be a catch, right?)

What are the advantages of a S/S over say a Ruger Red Label O/U? BTW, I took lessons on a 20 gauge Browning with an English stock and ported barrels. That was fun.

I actually enjoy using my 870 Wingmaster, but I was thinking having two different chokes would be an advantage on the big roosters we have here.

Is a S/S more difficult to shoot? Why do O/U seem more popular?

Thanks for your opinions and input.

September 3, 2002, 11:45 AM
My buddy in South Dakota bought a Fabarms Ultralight Lion(something like that??) from CDNN a year (or two??) ago for $599.

He swears by it and it is very light for a 12ga----the stock is walnut--but a cheap grade---he doesn't care because thats the gun he drags through the muck----the only other minor quirk is that it has extractors instead of ejectors.

As far as O/U vs S/S----if you can shoot a shotgun well----it doesn't really matter----just personal preference. I currently have an O/U---auto---and 2 pumps----but there is nothing like the feel like those 2 flat barrels of S/S in your hand----if made right---they are very quick and lightweight.

September 3, 2002, 01:18 PM
This is a question endlessly debate among supporters of both configurations. The o/u is more popular because it is favored by target shooters. Because there is a larger market more companies make and market o/us. The sxs hasn't been a factor in serious clay competition in almost a generation although there are exceptions.

The sxs is regarded more as a field gun. It's often lighter than the o/u and its proponents claim it has a better instinctive handling than the o/u. The instant selection of choke is a factor but is really only practical with twin triggers. I think the sxs is easier to carry in the field but don't feel particularly hindered carrying an over/under. Another advantage is the smaller gape of the sxs (the degree of angle when the gun is open) which helps keep your muzzles out of the dirt.

I don't find the sxs more difficult to shoot but I certainly don't shoot it as well at clays as my longer barreled (and heavier) over/under.


Dave McC
September 3, 2002, 05:24 PM
Shotgunners who rave about the SXS tend to be game shooters, those preferring the O/U tend to be clay shooters of various ilks. Of course, there's exceptions.

I've shot a limited amount of both, and like all of them, darnit. It boils down to personal choice.

As to 870s with one choke and pheasant, try two loads. My old wild ringneck medicine was a trap load of 1 1/8 oz of 7 1/2 shot first up, followed by 1 1/4 oz of 6s or sometimes 5s, with hard sometimes plated shot through chokes from Cylinder to Full. The proper choke was oft determined by the dogs used and how spooky the birds were.

If I were picking a double for ringnecks, it could be either a O/U or a SXS but....

It'd have the capability of using bigger charges like 1 1/4 oz, maybe more.

It'd have two triggers.

It'd have either a tight bbl for longer shots or tubes.A combo like Cylinder and IM sounds versatile, using load changes to fine tune the pattern.

It'd weigh around 7- 7 1/2 lbs. Less would kick like heck with those pheasant whackers, more would be too much to carry hither and yon.

And I'd probably load it just like the above, with a trap load up first, then a heavy load for longer shots and big tough ditch dragons.

Get the one that feels best, and enjoy...

September 4, 2002, 11:32 AM
I own both SXS and O/U and really think that the SXS is God's plan for the shotgun. It just comes up, points naturally, and busts whatever I can see clay or game. YMMV:)

September 4, 2002, 11:09 PM
Pot hunted with both. Did well.
Trap and skeet with both. Did well.
Individual gun makes more difference to me than type.

SXS a little quicker to reload for most...
But that is important to few.

Dave McC makes a VERY important point...
Dont go too light on the weight.


September 5, 2002, 08:01 PM
got both sxs and o/u, prefer the beretta o/u seem to get more birds with it.

September 5, 2002, 08:57 PM
Either way, you will have two barrels and two different chokes.

I love SXS but can't shoot them worth a damn. So I use O/Us

There is something about breaking the gun open and ejecting a couple of smoking hulls :D doesn't matter whether they come out side by side or stacked. A feeling you will never get from repeaters.

True sportsmen prefer doubles.


September 6, 2002, 07:17 PM
I like the way OUs look and have done some of my best bird shooting with a FIAS 20 gauge stack barrel.
There are some side by sides that appeal to me a lot though. They are often smaller gauges. Twenties look good, but I like the look of 28 and .410 side by sides even more.

If I had the cash I'd have more of both kinds.