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 Post subject: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2014 5:06 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2005 3:12 pm
Posts: 194
I have an old Mossberg with a fixed full choked barrel. Not worth much at all and not useful to me with a fixed full choke. I was thinking about cutting the barrel a little shorter and attempting to get a modified choke as a result. What I can't figure out is how much to cut off. Calipers can measure the outer edge diameter, but not the diameter a few millimeters inside the barrel to tell me when the constriction is about right for a modified choke.

Any ideas on how to do this?

The other concern is the the rate of constriction (per millimeter) will still be a full chokes rate. So, will the final constriction matter that much? Will it still behave like a full choke? Anyone have any experience (good or bad) doing this?




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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2014 5:19 pm 
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While theoretically it could be done, you'd have to hit an EXACT spot, 1/8" either way of center and you're likely to be off by 50% or more of your goal.

Mike Orlen can thread it for screw chokes for about 35 bucks, or he can just open the choke to whatever you desire, that's the correct way to accomplish your goal.

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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2014 5:22 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Wed May 27, 2009 6:05 pm
Posts: 1047
You can cut 1/8th inch at a time while shooting patterns and get there , but it's pretty bubba. Get a gunsmith to open it up or shoot spreaders


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2014 8:22 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2005 3:12 pm
Posts: 194
I know, it's bubba.

I did look at Mike Orlen's price list and to install threaded chokes ($55) or to open to a looser choke ($50) plus return shipping ($20) and my shipping to him $20 totals $90-95. The shotgun is only worth ~$150 right now. Buying a used barrel off of one of the online auction sites is the most cost effective solution it seems. I was hoping to find some extremely low cost way of modifying it myself.

I have had this old shotgun a very long time and would like to keep it going for sentimental reasons.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2014 8:50 pm 
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Location: Mid-Missouri
tom626 wrote:
I have an old Mossberg with a fixed full choked barrel. Not worth much at all and not useful to me with a fixed full choke. I was thinking about cutting the barrel a little shorter and attempting to get a modified choke as a result . . .



Yeah, it doesn't really work that way. The choked section is pretty short and the transition from bore to choke is even shorter.

Buy a new barrel.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2014 9:26 pm 
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tom626 wrote:
I have an old Mossberg with a fixed full choked barrel. Not worth much at all and not useful to me with a fixed full choke. I was thinking about cutting the barrel a little shorter and attempting to get a modified choke as a result. What I can't figure out is how much to cut off. Calipers can measure the outer edge diameter, but not the diameter a few millimeters inside the barrel to tell me when the constriction is about right for a modified choke.

Any ideas on how to do this?

The other concern is the the rate of constriction (per millimeter) will still be a full chokes rate. So, will the final constriction matter that much? Will it still behave like a full choke? Anyone have any experience (good or bad) doing this?


I did exactly what you're contemplating doing. It was about 25 years ago. I had an old 20 gauge pump with a really tight full choke. I cut about 3/4" (as I recall) off the end of the barrel and it opened it up to about a Mod choke.

By dropping a round (cylindrical) object down the barrel (from the chamber end) with masking tape around the object to modify the diameter, and then measuring in from the end of the muzzle to where the object stopped, I was able to determine where the choke taper started and where it ended. This took numerous times of trial and error to find the starting and ending point of the taper. Then I marked the barrel on the outside so as to remove about 1/3 or a little more of the taper. Then I made my cut and squared it up with a file.

It worked. Of course, the cutting process removed the front bead, but that problem can be solved by yet another Bubba project. :D

Good luck. Let us know how it turns out.

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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2014 12:53 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2012 12:47 am
Posts: 3606
Location: Dallas, TX
Go to this site and search the videos for "choke". You will see one on opening up a choke. He makes it look easy.

http://www.midwayusa.com/video

They sell the tools to do this.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2014 5:30 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:35 am
Posts: 1279
tom626 wrote:
I have an old Mossberg with a fixed full choked barrel. Not worth much at all and not useful to me with a fixed full choke. I was thinking about cutting the barrel a little shorter and attempting to get a modified choke as a result. What I can't figure out is how much to cut off. Calipers can measure the outer edge diameter, but not the diameter a few millimeters inside the barrel to tell me when the constriction is about right for a modified choke.

Any ideas on how to do this?

The other concern is the the rate of constriction (per millimeter) will still be a full chokes rate. So, will the final constriction matter that much? Will it still behave like a full choke? Anyone have any experience (good or bad) doing this?


Put down the grinder, sell the barrel and buy a barrel, which accepts screw in chokes.... no value lost.

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Last edited by Excellent959 on Sat Sep 06, 2014 6:58 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2014 6:23 am 
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DallasCMT wrote:
Go to this site and search the videos for "choke". You will see one on opening up a choke. He makes it look easy.

http://www.midwayusa.com/video

They sell the tools to do this.



It would cost more to buy the tools than to pay somebody to do the job. Unless you're going to do a bunch of barrels, this is a job best left to a pro. Besides, it's not as easy as Larry makes it look . . . "I made a bushing to keep the tool centered in the bore . . . " How many of us have the tools/skills to perform even this "easy" step?

On a double or some other gun with barrels that can't be economically replaced, I'd say to send tube off to Mike Orlen (I have a set on their way to him now). But on something like a Mossberg, forget all that and just buy another barrel. Resell the old one to somebody looking for a barrel to cut down and recoup some of your cost.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2014 9:43 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat Aug 30, 2014 10:39 am
Posts: 47
Location: Maryland
The video from MidwayUSA shows how easy it is. The bushings can be made in a few short minutes on a metal lathe. The reamers won't exactly be cheap and with need of a lathe, I agree with saying its better left for a professional. I definitely would not try accomplishing it by cutting the length down, that's very inaccurate and I'm not sure it would look good when finished.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2014 11:18 pm 
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Are you actually going to use the gun when you get it finished? Or will you shoot it a few times and put it away?


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 7:23 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2005 3:12 pm
Posts: 194
Ok, I'm convinced that cutting the barrel to achieve anything other than cylinder bore is not likely to work out well, or be a very time consuming project of taking off a very small amount, then patterning, then repeating until the desired choke behavior is found.

Looks like I'm in the market for a cheap used replacement barrel, which might take a while since they seem to go for around $100 and I'm not wanting to pay much more than $50.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 7:42 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:35 am
Posts: 1279
tom626 wrote:
Ok, I'm convinced that cutting the barrel to achieve anything other than cylinder bore is not likely to work out well, or be a very time consuming project of taking off a very small amount, then patterning, then repeating until the desired choke behavior is found.

Looks like I'm in the market for a cheap used replacement barrel, which might take a while since they seem to go for around $100 and I'm not wanting to pay much more than $50.


Maybe someone would be interested in trading barrels with you here on this forum... just post it . Great people, never had a problem.

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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:52 am 
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tom626 wrote:
Looks like I'm in the market for a cheap used replacement barrel, which might take a while since they seem to go for around $100 and I'm not wanting to pay much more than $50.



It's very unusual to find a usable shotgun barrel for a popular gun for $50. They're simply worth more than that. Even a plain barrel, full choke barrel like yours is worth at least $50 to a guy who just wants a barrel to cut down for a home defense gun . . . (OK, maybe with a Mossberg it's not worth much more than that since you can buy a new 18" barrel for $90 . . . but you get the idea).

You'll look long and hard before finding a decent mod choke barrel for $50. The way to get one for that price is to buy one for $100 and sell yours for $50.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 5:57 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2012 12:47 am
Posts: 3606
Location: Dallas, TX
I've read on other forums about folks cutting a slit in a wooden dowel and sliding in some sandpaper into the slit. They would then chuck that up in a drill and turn it in the choke area to take a few thousandths off.

I can see how this might work, but I can't imagine it would cut evenly, and may make the gun shoot off aim. But I suppose it could be effective as well if you got lucky by somehow keeping it straight. I guess if it did get off center, pressure could be applied to one side or the other while spinning it with the drill to change that. Of course it would need polishing afterward.

It also sounds like a good way to screw up an otherwise properly choked barrel.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 6:09 pm 
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Posts: 1279
DallasCMT wrote:
I've read on other forums about folks cutting a slit in a wooden dowel and sliding in some sandpaper into the slit. They would then chuck that up in a drill and turn it in the choke area to take a few thousandths off.

I can see how this might work, but I can't imagine it would cut evenly, and may make the gun shoot off aim. But I suppose it could be effective as well if you got lucky by somehow keeping it straight. I guess if it did get off center, pressure could be applied to one side or the other while spinning it with the drill to change that. Of course it would need polishing afterward.

It also sounds like a good way to screw up an otherwise properly choked barrel.

1+

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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2014 8:36 am 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2009 7:59 am
Posts: 1152
Location: West Michigan
What's wrong with a cylinder choke? Just cut off two inches and be done with it. You'll have a serviceable gun that you can shoot effectively at anything.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2014 9:01 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2012 12:47 am
Posts: 3606
Location: Dallas, TX
That's about the only reasonable and inexpensive choice. I'd just rather have some choke, IC would be my choice.


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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2014 9:22 pm 
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You guys are just a bunch of panty-waisted wusses who have no sense of adventure. :wink: :D

The OP has a gun that is essentially worth nothing other than sentimental value. Therefore, he wants to keep the gun but would like it to be more useful to him. I'm sure it's not his only gun and that he doesn't depend on it to keep from starving.

His sense of adventure tells him (and me too) that he would like to fix/modify the gun himself. What does he have to lose? At worst, he ends up cutting off too much and has a cylinder bore. If it goes as planned (and it should if he's careful), then he can accomplish his goal of modifying the gun to suit his wants/needs. Then he can brag to his buddies how smart he is about shotguns.

If he sends the gun off to someone else and pays $$$ to get the barrel modified, then all he can tell his buddies is that he paid more than the gun is worth to make a change to it, and most of them wouldn't consider this to be too smart. :D

So, I say "Go for it". What have you got to lose? It's not a safety situation. It's not going to cause the gun to blow up. Sometimes there's just some satisfaction (not to mention the pride and knowledge gained) from doing something yourself. It's kind of like reloading your own shells. You could buy them at the store, but reloading is more fun and gives a sense of accomplishment. BTW, what he has in mind WILL work if he does it carefully. I know because I did it and still have the gun to prove it. :D

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Please post For Sale items in the proper Classified section.

Semi-Auto Classifieds is ONLY for Complete Semi-Auto shotguns.
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 Post subject: Re: barrel cutting - Full choke to Mod?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2014 10:02 pm 
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Chances are he'll have to cut, where there's no rib post,so basically a sharp bendable rib at the end. I'd say follow robert's advise, cut it nice and clean along a rib post and call it a cylinder bore.

If he does find the right spot to cut the barrel and ends up with a modified choke, i'd love to see a pattern on paper. It might just work, who knows....



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