Skip to comments.What Shotgun to buy for Sporting Clays?
Posted on 04/08/2011 7:11:05 AM PDT by Thane_Banquo
My wife and I have been shooting pistols for about two years now. We really love shooting, and we want to branch out into shotgun sports, specifically sporting clays.
We are looking for a shotgun to share for this purpose, preferably an auto-loader. Mrs. Thane_Banquo is 5'3'' and 112 lbs, but she is physically fit and can handle her 1911 .45 without any problems. So she isn't afraid of a little recoil. However, a 12 ga. would probably be a bit too much for her, so probably a 16 ga. or a 20 ga. We're probably looking for something in the $300-$600 range, plus or minus.
Remmington 870 just racking it makes the clays come apart in the box
Haha! But I don’t think we’re looking for a pump.
No plans, however, for skeet or trap, so we've just left the short 'home defense' barrel installed.
A 12ga auto-loader doesn’t have as much recoil as a O/U has. That said, a 20ga will work. You can’t go wrong with a Browning.
If your local clay range has the option of renting a gun for a round or two - do so. Try out different gauges and makes. You mentioned your wife’s size, but not your own. A gun that fits her well may not fit you and visa-versa
If you don’t want a 12 gauge go to the 20 gauge.
The 16 gauge isn’t worth the trouble and most gun supply places don’t carry the 16 gauge.
I know someone will call me a liar about them not having 16 gauge ammunition, but where I live it’s 12 0r 20 ,16 gauge ammunition can hardly be found.
Don’t know if that is as important as a good cookbook. Ya gotta know just how to prepare them or they taste like, well...dirt.
Closest thing to a Benelli I could find at reasonable price.
In your price range I’d look for a used Remington 1100 in 20 gauge with screw in chokes. You can either cut down the stock or get a youth stock for it. I keep one of these for a loaner - “new shooter” gun.
A gently used Beretta semi is also a possibility.
Forget the 16 gauge (yes, I love them and have a bunch) the ammo is pricier and sometimes difficult to find.
In your price range an O/U is a risky proposition, they really don’t get durable enough until you can go for a used Citori or Beretta in the $1200 or so range. (although an occasional one shows up for under $1000)
As a great lover of the 16 gauge I agree with you. The ammo is more difficult to find, and the selection limited.
If you plan to shoot it alot, you really need to roll your own.
I’d recommend either a Remington 870 or a Mossberg 500 in 12 gauge. The guns themselves aren’t expensive - about $300-$400 depending on the model. The utility of a 12 gauge is so much greater than that of a 20 gauge that I would recommend a 12 gauge with a recoil-reducing stock.
I do a fair amount of trap shooting myself, and I can tell you the Blackhawk stock makes a world of difference. Using a recoil suppression system like that makes 8-10 rounds (200-250 shots) no trouble at all, and the recoil is much less than even a standard 20 gauge. If you don’t mind the look of the stock, it’s a great option and makes shooting a 12 gauge quite comfortable.
If you shoot Clays like I do I recommend the AA-12 fully auto shotgun. Chances are you may get a hit before the clay hits the ground
..... just kidding people dont freak out on me....
I thought that pump-actions weren’t ideal for clays. Is that not true?
28 guage is the gun for lady skeet shooting, and it will knock down Qual and Doves also.
Pump guns can be used for the clay shooting sports. I shoot skeet competitively and there are several shooters who use pump guns (870 Wingmaster, Browning BPS, and Winchester M12 for the geezers).
The key is that they shoot them exclusively, and have shot them for a long time and have plenty of practice. Manipulating the slide has to be second nature.
Also, being a fixed breech gun, as opposed to a gas operated semi, they will have more recoil.
The 28 is a sweet gauge, but unless you reload.... $10 a box for AA’s gets old fast.
I wish! But if I got an AA-12, I’d never get to use it. Mrs. Thane_Banquo would never let it out of her hands!
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