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 Post subject: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 7:46 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2007 12:57 pm
Posts: 110
Hi guys

I've shot 12 gauges all my shooting life(only 4 years) and was wondering why people who own 12 gauges also own smaller bore guns as well. What's the point? Not wishing to be controversial because I freely admit that I am speaking without any knowledge of smaller bores whatsoever. I am thinking that maybe one day I'll splash out on one myself but would like to hear you guys reasons for doing so. I think in the US you guys have more competitions for specific bore sizes than we do here in the UK - so that would be reason enough if you wanted a bit of variation.

Your views on buying a 20g and 28g would be welcome.


Steve :D




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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 8:04 am 
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I started off with a 12 for versatility. If I'm doing shotgun hunting where I'm moving around I like to carry my SxS 20. It's lighter and points better and faster for me than my 12 does. Also it was my grandfather's so I like to use it as much as I can. For doves and quail I can do just about as well with my 20 as I can with my 12. About the only times I use my 12 for hunting any more are for coyotes (haven't gotten one yet :x ), if I'm going to be shooting steel, or if I get a chance to try my hand at turkey hunting this spring.

I've never shot a 28 but I have to imagine it would be to the 20 what the 20 is to the 12 as far as being lighter and faster handling. Depending on the quarry and the style of hunting I can see where the 28 would be beneficial as well but I don't have plans to get one mostly because I'm trying not to add too many more gauges/calibers.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 8:26 am 
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Location: Nova Scotia,Canada
The 28 gauge is my favourite.In my opinion I do not feel I am losing anything to the 20 gauge.The 28 gauge is available in a one ounce factory load from Winchester and the 28 gauge shotguns that I have patterned with it, patterned well.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 9:06 am 
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I think some of it may be the same reason people uss bows, habdguns, and muzzleloaders. For a challenge. Also you havs the advantage of lighter guns. IIRC there are seperate class' for subguage guns in skeet so you could shoot more.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 9:15 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2005 11:43 am
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It seems to me that most 20ga are using 20ga frames so they are
lighter when comparing to their 12ga counterparts. I am not sure if
I can say the same about 28ga when comparing to 20. It seems to me
that most modern 28ga are based on 20ga frames and therefore the
weight differences are next to not existent. While back when I was looking at
this, it was not unusal to see 28 ga which actually weighted more than
20ga of the same model.

Having said that, I just got my first 28 ga to add to the 20 ga collection.
This was mostly driven by a "good deal", desire to try something different
and having (hopefully) less recoil to go easier on wife when target shooting.


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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 9:50 am 
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My father in law has a Spanish 28 that makes my 20 look like a punt gun. I know there are manufacturers putting 28 gauge barrels on 20 gauge frames but a 28 on a properly sized frame is a very light and fast handling gun. I haven't had the opportunity to shoot one but I've handled a couple of them.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:04 am 
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None of my 20ga exceeds 6lbs. Most of them are around 5.5 lbs.
I primary hunt with little target shooting so recoil is not an issue for
me. The 28ga I just acquired is only 2 ounces lighter (per spec) than its 20ga
counterpart (same model). However, it feels heavier. I do not have precise
instrument to verify it.

If someone out there knows of 20 or 28 ga under ~5 lbs, I would like to hear.


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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:28 am 
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While a 12 can be loaded down to 20 and 28 levels, it is still a large frame and they tend to be heavier - yes there are some 12's weighing in at 6 to 6.5 pounds, but not that many. Most decent 20's will weigh from 5-3/4 to 6-1/2 #, with 28's on a 28 frame going as much as a half pound lighter than that. The slimness, lithe-handling of a small bore when after upland is something that has to be experienced to truly understand.

If you have ever hunted upland in the mountains, such as chukar out West, you'll also appreciate that less weight as you climb incessantly uphill all day long... :mrgreen:

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:59 am 
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It's fun. A 28 SxS on Bobwhite quail is perfection. A 20 gauge on dove is great too. Match the gun to the game. Yes, I do use a 12 gauge magnum for waterfowl.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 11:19 am 
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It's just fun to use different guns!

And, my 28 ga 1100 is a blast when the doves are flying.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 11:31 am 
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Same reason one uses golf clubs of different size and weight.

The 12 Gauge is versatile, but it's a blunt instrument.

Subgauges tend to be quicker on target, lighter to carry, and lower in recoil. Upland hunting with a well-balanced 20 Gauge is a pleasure that a 12 Gauge doesn't match.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 11:54 am 
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steve: I like to shoot 28's. I use mine for hunting small birds and for small gauge clays events.

In a 20 gauge event, very little is lost by shooting a 28....in fact my wife has won several 20g evenst w/ her 28.

My "go to" gun for South American doves is the 28 and I have bagged many 1000's over the years.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 12:51 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 12:09 pm
Posts: 1248
Location: South Carolina
Steve,

Shooting sub gauges can be fun, but one point to ponder before buying: If you choose 28 ga. and shoot a lot, it can greatly increase your budget. That is, unless you reload yourself.

If this is a consideration, you might want to start with the 20 ga. as the shells are the same price as 12 ga.

I.S.


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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 1:25 pm 
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Steve,

Much good input on this subject already. My liking for the 20ga and then 28ga came about as the more shooting I did on quail. I began to damage birds beyond eating with the 12ga and dropped down to the 20ga and then again to the 28 which is now my favorite. An additional heads up might also be that some "Quail" operations don't exactly like the little 28ga because so many flushes are not taken down by less experienced shooters and then they blame the guide, dogs you name it for their lack of success. I usually ask ahead on gauge preferences when hunting preserves and stay away from the 12ga only operations.

Good shooting...John

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 1:39 pm 
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Fun: I was shooting a .410 particularly well the other day and came away with an "all's right with the world" feeling.

Preference: I find a slim 16 O/U to be my favorite pheasant gun. Graceful, strikes a little better than the 20 and yet still comes in at 6 lbs on the nose, and with no need for 3" jaw smackers. My second favorite for walking the uplands ... a 28. Inside 35 yards, it's a beautiful performer and handles like a conductor's baton.

Certain Applications: Nothing beats a 12 for a trap gun.

For the heck of it: Because we like a certain gun and have the cash to buy it and feed it. We're gun people and appreciate a well-made gun, especially if it's well-suited to its purpose and reliable as all get-out. Pretty don't hurt ... but that's in the eye of the beholder.

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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 2:43 pm 
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If you want a more detailed, technical discussion of the differences between 28, 20, and 12 gauges, you might want to read Shotgunning: The Art and the Science, Second Edition, by Bob Brister.


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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 8:28 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2007 12:57 pm
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Thanks everyone for some really useful responses. It seems like, generally speaking, the smaller bores are more popular for live game shooting than for anything else. As I solely shoot clays(shooting live game in the UK is a rather expensive pastime :lol: ) then I guess I'll save my money and spend it on more prectice and tuition.

Steve :D


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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 7:05 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2007 8:44 am
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Location: Ishpeming, MI
If all you're going to do is shoot clays and you can handle the weight and recoil of a 12 gauge then that's all you need. For people who prefer less weight and recoil and/or hunt small game at closer ranges the smaller gauges fill the bill.

The 12 gauge is the sledgehammer of the shotgun family, but you don't want a sledgehammer if you're trying to drive in finishing nails. (I guess that would make the 10 gauge the jackhammer) :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 8:28 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2009 7:43 pm
Posts: 75
maybe i can answer youre question- 12 ga being as versatile as it is is a great choice for about everything (already said)- if you dont mind picking lead out of youre phesant. for goose/duck hunters i see why you'd want one. here in illinois the 20 gauge is the most practical thing out there seeing as that theres not a huge upland game population. you can deerhunt with it, come coyote season you can put buckshot in it, and for early season squirrel when the leaves are still up so those hail mary shots you take that a .410 probibly couldn't kill, the 20 ga. could- and not have the overkill factor either. in the hot september sun, its nice to have something as light as the 20 gauge, my personal gun is the 870 in 20 ga. :D just my two cents. -jimmy


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 Post subject: Re: 12 g versus 20g and 28g shotguns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 8:41 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2009 3:13 pm
Posts: 23
Funny, I just sat down to ask this same question, almost.
I was thinking about purchasing a 20gauge Yildiz O/U for Trap only,
as I use my 12gauge Win. pump for getting dirty while hunting.
Anyone prefer their 20 over their 12 for trapshooting? and why?
I can't see anything in the ATA rules against using 20gauge.
(hope I'm not stealing this thread :? )
Cheers
Pea




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