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 Post subject: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 8:33 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2009 5:59 pm
Posts: 170
Location: North Carolina
I have the opportunity to do a bit of pheasant hunting in North Dakota next fall and of course am thinking of which gun to bring. My choices are:
Browning BPS 12ga
Browning BPS 20ga
Browning A5 Light 12
Stevens 5100 SxS 12ga choked F/M

All my Brownings are Invector choked w/ 28" barrels. I have never been pheasant hunting, and it's been a long time since I've done any quail hunting, so I'm not exactly an expert at upland shooting. I've had my 12ga BPS for 25 years and shoot it well, but it's a little heavy, and I expect to be doing a bit of walking. There is nothing light about my "Light 12" A5, so I have kind of ruled it out. The Stevens was my Grandpa's so it would be neat to take, but I'm not sure it is the best choice, and I'm not sure the 20ga BPS is enough gun for a novice. These will be wild birds we are hunting. What do y'all think?


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 9:54 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 9:41 pm
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Location: SE Wisconsin
I myself, would take the 20 gauge!

Larry

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 9:58 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2008 8:44 pm
Posts: 126
Location: SD Native residing in NE
I hunt pheasants with a 12 gauge for longer distance shots and to have more knock down power at longer ranges, but I am not a very good shot either, the first shot is usually just a warning. I am guessing that you are flying in so taking more than one gun probably isn't a practical option either. If it is early in the hunting season the 20 gauge should work fine, because the birds should hold tighter and the ranges should be shorter. If you are going later in the season then take a 12 gauge IMO.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:09 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2009 11:13 am
Posts: 20
Location: KS
Take the Browning auto 5. Pheasants are hardy birds so you can't ever go wrong hunting with a 12ga. Besides, you'll need all the pellets that you can get, don't limit yourself with the 20 ga. Also, the semi auto will give you quick follow up shots. Personally, I hunt only hunt with a semi auto 12 ga. (Benelli). Be sure & get tuned up by shooting some clays with the gun before you head west. Good Luck!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 7:36 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 12:28 pm
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Location: Nebraska
I would take the A-5. I like A-5's, use sweet 16's and the Light 12 in NoDak.
I also like doubles, alot.
NoDak can be a lot of walking, so if you are worried about weight (even the heavier A-5 12ga doesn't bother me) take the lightest.
You will need a plug in your gun too! Need a plug even for upland in NoDak.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 8:48 pm 
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I would bring the A-5

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:02 pm 
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Ask yourself which gun do I shoot best and which gun do I want to carry all day. Take the twenty and a 12 and have fun. Or better yet buy a new gun what an excuse that you "need" one.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:06 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 08, 2004 11:45 am
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Location: Olympia, WA
grooves845 wrote:
I have the opportunity to do a bit of pheasant hunting in North Dakota next fall and of course am thinking of which gun to bring. My choices are:
Browning BPS 12ga
Browning BPS 20ga
Browning A5 Light 12
Stevens 5100 SxS 12ga choked F/M

All my Brownings are Invector choked w/ 28" barrels. I have never been pheasant hunting, and it's been a long time since I've done any quail hunting, so I'm not exactly an expert at upland shooting. I've had my 12ga BPS for 25 years and shoot it well, but it's a little heavy, and I expect to be doing a bit of walking. There is nothing light about my "Light 12" A5, so I have kind of ruled it out. The Stevens was my Grandpa's so it would be neat to take, but I'm not sure it is the best choice, and I'm not sure the 20ga BPS is enough gun for a novice. These will be wild birds we are hunting. What do y'all think?
Find out if you must use non-toxic/Steel shot. If so take the Auto5. If you can still use Pb (Lead) take the Stevens SxS. Speaking solely for my self the SxS would be the best. I would rather have two shots with two chokes, than three shots with one choke.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2010 10:30 am 
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Personally , I'd bite the bullet and pay whatever extra it may cost to bring 2 guns .
Bring the 20 , and the 12 that you like best .
Having hunted in ND , I can't imagine going up there and only hunting Pheasants .
I'd want a 12 that's capable of shooting steel with me , just in case you get a chance to hunt ducks , geese , or sandhills .
I think the most fun hunt I've ever had was a ND sandhill hunt .


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2010 4:41 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2007 7:03 pm
Posts: 807
Location: Minot, North Dakota
Take the A-5. You want the dependability of the A-5 and quick shots. You will come across grouse and Huns also and that season starts early Sept...the grouse will be skittish and you'll take long shots at them...12 gauge works best. The Huns are like quail and 20 is best but the Huns are few and far between. And the 12 will kill 'em just as dead.
As a non-resident hunter, you're not allowed to hunt the first week or so of Pheasant season, so again, the 12 is better as the birds begin to get skittish. They will hold tighter as the snow covers the ground later in the year but you need a 12 to knock them down when they have their winter feathers on.
Lots of walking, but the A-5 is the gun I would take. Lead shot only unless you have a Japanese barrel. Most areas are fine for lead, only the federal areas and wetlands require non-tox.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 5:32 am 
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Location: S.W. Iowa
If you are only taking one take the BPS 12, you can do anything with it. If you can take two take the BPS 20 also. I personally don't like the Ronco Jam Master, excuse me the A5, I know, I know, its a classic blah, blah, blah. The Stevens, too heavy to carry in 12 gauge.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 10:53 pm 
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Shotgunnut,

"Ronco Jam Master" ? I won't even give that a reply :!:

:lol: :lol: :lol:

Grooves,

Take the gun that you shoot best and a back up. IMHO, I'd take both a 12ga and a 20ga.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 11:53 pm 
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Location: Plainfield, IL
I'd just take the gun that I personally shot the best. Sorry for the boring reply.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Thu Mar 11, 2010 10:51 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2005 2:43 pm
Posts: 259
Location: Watertown, SD
Defintely bring 2 guns. For the distance you are traveling you don't want to get there with just one gun and have it take a crap on you in the middle of your hunt. Personally I would bring a 12 and a 20. Or if you only want to bring one gauge of ammo I'd then bring the 12 ga. BPS and the A5. Are you flying out or driving? Heck if you are driving I'd bring 'em all. If flying, you can fit to shotguns in one 2-gun hard case.

I'd also offer a suggestion on chokes and shot size. Assuming you will be shooting lead shot and a single barrel gun I would use either IC or Mod with #5 or #6 shot. Really no need for anything tighter than Mod. And if you are hunting with pointing dogs I'd go with the IC. Since you have invector chokes in the Brownings you also will be able to change on the go if necessary.

Good luck and shoot straight.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 12:30 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2007 9:08 am
Posts: 136
I find that when the wind's blowing strong, and it frequently is up there, the 12 is the preferred gun. On calmer days, a 20 is fine usually. Plus, the 20 is a lighter carry. The perfect compromise gun would be a 16ga. Sounds like an excuse to buy a new gun to me!


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 1:29 pm 
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Personally, in 50+ years of pheasant hunting, I cannot remember ever using a 12ga. I usually use an old SxS Parker20ga VHE (my first gun) or my new English 20ga. As a kid, I thought that I needed more firepower so I carried the Sweet Sixteen out to ND and IA. To each his own but I have never felt undergunned with a 20ga. JMHO, of course.

Guess that I should mention that we have always hunted with some pretty good dogs and that can make a difference.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 9:56 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2009 5:59 pm
Posts: 170
Location: North Carolina
jml1209 wrote:
I find that when the wind's blowing strong, and it frequently is up there, the 12 is the preferred gun. On calmer days, a 20 is fine usually. Plus, the 20 is a lighter carry. The perfect compromise gun would be a 16ga. Sounds like an excuse to buy a new gun to me!


Now that you mention it, I have had the itch for a 16. Actually tried to trade my Light 12 for a Sweet 16 a few weeks ago but couldn't work out the deal.

I've had people tell me that SxS guns are not recommended for pheasants, but not really explain why. Is there some reason a SxS isn't a good pheasant gun?


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 10:22 pm 
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grooves845 wrote:
jml1209 wrote:
I find that when the wind's blowing strong, and it frequently is up there, the 12 is the preferred gun. On calmer days, a 20 is fine usually. Plus, the 20 is a lighter carry. The perfect compromise gun would be a 16ga. Sounds like an excuse to buy a new gun to me!


Now that you mention it, I have had the itch for a 16. Actually tried to trade my Light 12 for a Sweet 16 a few weeks ago but couldn't work out the deal.

I've had people tell me that SxS guns are not recommended for pheasants, but not really explain why. Is there some reason a SxS isn't a good pheasant gun?


Their not good pheasant guns, they are great pheasant guns. 12's, 16's, 20's, 28's, with the right load they all do the trick.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Thu Mar 18, 2010 4:55 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2005 2:43 pm
Posts: 259
Location: Watertown, SD
grooves845 wrote:
jml1209 wrote:
I find that when the wind's blowing strong, and it frequently is up there, the 12 is the preferred gun. On calmer days, a 20 is fine usually. Plus, the 20 is a lighter carry. The perfect compromise gun would be a 16ga. Sounds like an excuse to buy a new gun to me!


Now that you mention it, I have had the itch for a 16. Actually tried to trade my Light 12 for a Sweet 16 a few weeks ago but couldn't work out the deal.

I've had people tell me that SxS guns are not recommended for pheasants, but not really explain why. Is there some reason a SxS isn't a good pheasant gun?


I grew up shooting a 16 ga. but hadn't had one for years. Before last season started I bought a Browning Citori White Lightning in 16 ga. and fell in love with it. It's about all I used. The 12 ga. Benelli sat in the gun case most of the season. Only problem with the 16 ga. is the lack of non-toxic shot to choose from. I used the Federal Premium Wing-Shok's in #4 steel. They did a nice job.

Nothing wrong with a SxS for pheasants. In fact there are a lot of guys shooting them that swear by them. I wouldn't mind finding a 16 ga. SxS.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Pheasant gun
PostPosted: Thu Mar 18, 2010 5:28 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 12:28 pm
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Location: Nebraska
Dakotazeb, have you tried Kent's Tungsten matrix or RST's nice shot?
Both are fantastic. Expensive, but worth it. Especially compared to the steel loads.


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