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Old October 26, 2009, 01:54 PM   #1
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Mixed gauge shotguns?

I was wondering: has anyone here ever had/used a shotgun with two seperate gauges? For instance an over/under with 12 gauge below and 20 gauge on top. I know the usefulness would be a bit limited in most cases, but some people might appreciate having a single gun that both they and their wife could feel comfortable shooting.
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Old October 26, 2009, 02:01 PM   #2
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That raises a safety concern. A 12/20 burst would be way too easy to make happen, in my opinion. A 20 gauge shell dropped into a 12 gauge barrel drops far enough into the forcing cone to allow a 12 gauge round to be chambered behind it- something you DON'T want to happen.

20 gauge 870's are readily available.
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Old October 26, 2009, 02:04 PM   #3
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There are too many different 12 gauge loads, including some very light ones, to make such a thing worth a second thought.
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Old October 26, 2009, 02:09 PM   #4
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Violates one of the first rules about safe shotgunning and mixing shell calibers. There are a few rifle/ shotgun caliber (say .22/.410) weapons out there but I have never seen mixed gauge shotgun.
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Old October 26, 2009, 02:24 PM   #5
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I've never seen a mixed gague shotgun manufactured ...

Its a Big Safety Issue - and I think it's a really bad idea ! But you could do it with "tubes" - leave one barrel as a 12ga / put tubes in one barrel as a 20ga. But it is strictly prohibited by rule, on Skeet and Sporting Clays.

A far better idea - you could effectively do the same thing by changing your shells in a 12ga. Leave it as a 12ga - Load one barrel with 1 1/8oz, load one barrel with 7/8 oz ( like a 20ga load ) - or with a 3/4oz load like a 28ga. At least then, it would be safe.

That way one gun / becomes a gun both you and your wife could shoot safely / and there would be no tubes involved - and no safety issues ( because there would only be 12ga shells in both of your vests).

About a month ago / at a local club - we had a shooter blow up a 12ga O/U gun because he dropped a 20ga shell into one barrel ( then thought the gun was empty, and loaded a 12ga shell on top of it). He was with his grandson / kid was shooting a 20ga ...and his grandpa blew up a nice Beretta ( but noone was hurt ..) except his ego and $ 2,500 out of his checkbook.
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Old October 26, 2009, 09:10 PM   #6
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I'm kind of surprised that there isn't any such weapon. I'd have thought somebody would offer a shotgun with both 12 and 20 gauge barrels for discerning customers who didn't feel like reloading. Good thing I wasn't actually looking for one.
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Old October 26, 2009, 09:35 PM   #7
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What you going to do, shoot the first clay then hand the gun to your wife to get the second one.
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Old October 26, 2009, 09:51 PM   #8
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I've seen plenty of drillings...

... that combined rifle and shotgun, but I've never seen two separate shotgun gauges.

Suspect that's due to the safety considerations raised in some of the previous posts.
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Old October 27, 2009, 08:29 AM   #9
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This guy would probably make you one for ten grand. Safety issues would be my worry also. And as stated there are so many 12 ga rounds available it would be kind of pointless.
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Old October 27, 2009, 08:39 AM   #10
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Over the course of history, I am sure this is not a new idea. I am sure it has been tried but I defy anyone to show me one.

And, yes, it is not a good idea for the reasons expressed above.
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Old October 27, 2009, 09:34 AM   #11
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Just in case someone does not know, although I think that they had only one shotgun barrel, the gun that was know as the "Drilling" (which I believe was a brand name, but were other makers), and variations including a German WWII survival gun that was issued to some German bomber crews, had multiple barrels including a shotgun, large center fire rifle, small center fire rifle, and .22 rim fire. There were civilian rifles in Europe for sporting purposes also, that were intended to shoot game of opportunity, be it hare, boar, game bird, or stag.

Whoops! Now that I have thought about it, they were more likely to have two 12 gauge shotgun barrels, one large center fire rifle, and one small rifle (either center fire or rim fire...I cannot remember for sure; been too many years).

Last edited by dahermit; October 27, 2009 at 05:07 PM. Reason: Whoops!
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