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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a dilemma. I can buy a shotgun at the top of my budget that is "close" to fitting, but has a small amount of cast-off. Or I can buy a shotgun that costs $500 less, fits worse off the shelf, but then have money left over to have an adjustable comb/LOP installed. I would also consider having it fitted to me, but I'm having difficulty locating anyone in my area who offers these services.

What do you think is the better choice here? This is my first O/U, I have only ever owned semi-autos and those are obviously easy to fit using shims. Do poorly-fitting guns generally still fit badly after installing adjustable stock hardware? Or will it fix all issues?
 

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Is a small amount of cast a deal breaker? I --for one-- like a neutral stock or one w/ as little cast as possible (I'm a righty).

So if the cast is bothering you , you can have an adj comb fitted to the gun and correct that. Since you shoot a semi , you have probably honed your mount where a real fitting might help you. Sadly , there are very few places to get a real fitting. I have encountered several charlatans myself. 99.9% of gunsmiths have no clue about fitting.

If you end up w/ an adj comb , set it at the pattern board and leave it alone for at least 2000 shells. Constant tweaking is an easy way to make your life miserable.
 

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If you end up w/ an adj comb , set it at the pattern board and leave it alone for at least 2000 shells. Constant tweaking is an easy way to make your life miserable.[/quote]

Sera, truer words were never spoken!

In my case I had to learn this lesson the hard (and expensive) way!

Where were you Sera when I needed you and your wisdom? :)
 

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I agree with sera and Basstar if a bit of cast adjustment at the comb will allow the stock to fit.

"What do you think is the better choice here? This is my first O/U, I have only ever owned semi-autos and those are obviously easy to fit using shims. Do poorly-fitting guns generally still fit badly after installing adjustable stock hardware? Or will it fix all issues?"

It is impossible to answer about the installation of stock hardware fixing all issues. Generally, the answer is probably "yes." Given a good stock fitter, he should be able to make almost any gun fit, assuming that the size of the grip fits the hand of the shooter.

One other benefit of the good stock fitters is their ability and willingness to discuss corrections any shooting form problems, which have occurred with the use of a poorly fitting stock.

I get the impression that the more expensive gun is an over/under because you compare getting a gun to fit to fitting a semi auto. If that is correct, the cast may be able to be eliminated by having the stock bent.

If that seems favorable, contact Mike Orlen (see the gunsmithing forum here; Mike is the moderator). Mike's work is highly praised by SGW members.

If the comb is the only thing that needs the cast removed, bending may be better than having an adjustable comb installed, although Mike can do that too if you opt to the less expensive gun.

Regarding stock fitters: Where do you live? If you open a new thread, asking for stock fitters in your area, SGW members may be able to suggest a good one. Basstar is correct; there are some stock butchers out there who don't know what they are doing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the good advice. Both guns I'm looking at are indeed O/U's. You seem to think that stock fitting is a better choice than getting adjustable hardware installed, is there a good reason aside from the expert advice the fitter can give me? Is it generally less expensive to have a stock bent/cut than it is to send it off for an adjustable comb/buttplate? If I replace the gun in the future would it not be more desirable to potential buyers to have the adjustments, and less desirable if it was bent/cut just to fit me?

I live in Phoenix. If you know of any reputable gunfitters here please let me know. Otherwise I might take your advice and make a post about it after I buy the gun.
 

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claybreak said:
Thanks for the good advice. Both guns I'm looking at are indeed O/U's. You seem to think that stock fitting is a better choice than getting adjustable hardware installed, is there a good reason aside from the expert advice the fitter can give me? Is it generally less expensive to have a stock bent/cut than it is to send it off for an adjustable comb/buttplate? If I replace the gun in the future would it not be more desirable to potential buyers to have the adjustments, and less desirable if it was bent/cut just to fit me?

I live in Phoenix. If you know of any reputable gunfitters here please let me know. Otherwise I might take your advice and make a post about it after I buy the gun.
CLaybreak, IMHO your first move before you spend any money on adjustments is to buy and read Rollin's book. I've read it and reread it and it is an invaluable resource!
 

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Basstar - Thank you for the book recommendation.

claybreak said:
Thanks for the good advice. Both guns I'm looking at are indeed O/U's. You seem to think that stock fitting is a better choice than getting adjustable hardware installed, is there a good reason aside from the expert advice the fitter can give me?

Stock fitting is usually a better road to follow because most shooters do not know what stock dimensional changes need to be made and also do not realize that when one stock dimension is changed that it usuallhy affects other dimensions.

Example: The pitch (angle formed by the recoil pad and the rib, close to 90 degrees) does not fit the shooter because the bottom pointed toe of the recoil pad sticks out too far. When the pitch is corrected, the correct stock length (LOP = length of pull) is reduced.

Another example: The shooter has a long neck and needs to lean it forward to put his cheek on the comb. He raises his gun mount or has a pad adjuster installed so the whole recoil pad can be lowered and again the length of the stock will need to be reduced.

I could go on but stock fitting is challenging because it deals with three variables, five stock dimensions, shooting form (stance, gun mount, weight distribution, head/neck/body posture) and his or her own conformation ( height, weight, neck length, shoulder width, distance between eyes, etc.) are all interrelated. Change just one of them in any of the three areas and others are very likely to be affected.

Initially, it is confusing. That is why Basstar advised to read and reread the book. The first time through it can be confusing when the reader knows little about stock fitting and it's affect on good shooting form[ /color]

Is it generally less expensive to have a stock bent/cut than it is to send it off for an adjustable comb/buttplate? If I replace the gun in the future would it not be more desirable to potential buyers to have the adjustments, and less desirable if it was bent/cut just to fit me?

That is difficult to say. If the stock were bent to neutral, very few buyers would object or even know it had been bent.

As far as cutting the stock, if it is very much too long, that would affect your shooting success. The only way to correct it would be to cut it.


I live in Phoenix. If you know of any reputable gunfitters here please let me know. Otherwise I might take your advice and make a post about it after I buy the gun.


A separate post might be productive. Something tells me that there may be stock fitters in Arizona; (I may have read about one in the past).

One that I know is great and travels around the country and fits at various shooting clubs is The Country Gentleman - http://www.gunfitter.com. They are Todd and Jerry Nelson headquartered in Alabama. Both are excellent stock fitters. There are others who travel but I cannot recall who they are.

As an aside, many gunsmiths can change stock dimensions and install adjustable combs and pad adjusters, correct pitch and stock length if you tell them what you need. They don't need to know anything about stock fitting if you can order the changes you need.
 
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