View Full Version : 20 ga.

March 21, 2005, 05:24 PM
Just how less effective is the 20 gauge verses a 12? How much more shot does a 12 carry?
thanx in advance

March 21, 2005, 05:56 PM
if u r useing a shotgun for HD a 20 gauge should still be plenty with the right load no tiny birdshot... but a 12 gauge is better if u dont mind the recoil

March 21, 2005, 05:57 PM
A standard 12 gauge load will throw 1 1/8oz of lead shot.

A standard 20 gauge will throw 7/8oz of lead shot.

12ga shells are capable of handling IIRC up to 1 1/2 oz in the really stout loads in a 2 3/4" hull.

A 20 gauge about 1 1/8oz is the max possible in a load of shot in a 2 3/4" hull.

Many people that are target shooters are loading down in the 12ga to 7/8oz of shot for recoil and comfort reasons, the same is done in 20ga shells, bringing them down to 3/4oz of shot.

The effectiveness is slight. For defense, inside 20yards, either load will kill just as dead. For game hunting the 12 has an edge, although slight. For waterfowl with steel loads the 12ga has more advantage.

My personal favorite is the 28ga throwing 3/4oz of shot. 80% of my shooting is with this remarkable little shell. I have several 12gauges, but I keep an 870 20 gauge handy in the house for unexpected circumstances.

March 21, 2005, 05:58 PM
I should have said that this would be for hunting.(upland/ducks/geese)

March 21, 2005, 06:59 PM
You would problay want to use a 12 gauge. Espically if you are going to be goose hunting. They are pretty hard to kill sometimes. I would also use a 12 gauge for ducks. A 20 gauge would be good for upland birds also.

March 21, 2005, 08:29 PM
I generally break out the 10ga for geese, and keep the 12ga for ducks. Although I do very little hunting anymore, the new Remington Hevi-Shot looks impressive compared to steel loads. Ducks and geese can be taken with the 20ga, but it has it's limitations on range and payload. If you know when not to shoot at an out of range bird, that's half the battle.

March 22, 2005, 01:46 PM
A 20 ga. is definitely underpowered for geese. Both 20 ga. or 12 is fine for most upland, even 28 will often cut it (though for upland I still favor the 16 as you may have guessed). If large bears are a problem in the area I would want 12 ga. slugs for protection and a smooth pump action. If you're mostly after geese, you want 10 ga. If recoil's a bit of a problem, look to a semi.

Hey, why not get a few gauges? I'll be happy to write a letter to the wife explaining why you need more than one! :D