I would go with a 20 gauge gas operated gun . I would look at used Beretta 390 or 3901 or a Browning Gold hunter. Be sure to take the youngster out to shoot targets before the hunt and use light loads .
I too prefer 20 ga auto's for beginners. You control the shells and only give them one at a time. This is the method I started my daughter with.
Look to see if you can find a used Remington LT1100 or Beretta 303 youth gun. You might find one for under $400. Franchi and CZ also list 20 ga youth autos but I haven't seen one yet. Traditions ALS2100 is a close copy of the Beretta 303. They sell for around $300 new, if you can find one.
Good luck with your new hunter. Practice before hunting is a must.
Thaks guys that is what I had planed on was an auto 1 shell at a time and we are going to the range on monday to practice. He has finished his hunter ed and safety. He got his first deer this year so he has the makings of quiet the sportsman.[/i]
For less than the $500 limit, Remington 870 Express - Youth 20 ga. (I just bought one for my almost 10 yr. old son.) $229.00 at Dick's Sporting Goods.
(I called Remington and acquired a 'spare' stock to cut down even shorter for his little stature.)
I also bought an Edwards Recoil Reducer (from Brownell's) to reduce recoil even more, than the Limbsaver (recoil pad) that's going on the little stock.
For a few pennies less than the $500, the Remington 11-87 - Youth - Synthetic, 20 ga.
(I bought one of these for my wife, who wants to shoot some clay birds.) Who knows, IF she doesn't like the sport, my son will have another scattergun.
Sorry for rambling on. I don't believe in jarring a kid's teeth loose, when they first start shooting. The 'teeth jarring' just might leave the child with a bad 'first impression' of shooting, and might scare them off. (Not good for the sport!)
My Dad started me with an old Savage 311 sxs 20 and while these are somewhat heavy the weight offset the recoil of even pheasant loads, I don't remember the weight being a problem and dad says it kept me from being too eager . Another advantage being similar to a single shot without the dangerous exposed hammer and no complicated action. I also believe the break open guns to be safer (i.e. just open the gun when crossinq fences etc.)
If you're going to start him out with a fixed breech gun (pump) don't go buy the cheap promos with velocities at 1250 and up.
I've watched dads take peoples advice on getting a 20 so it doesn't kick, then the dad have to stand behind the kid to keep from getting knocked off his feet--------and still think he did the right thing :roll:
A 20 gauge gas gun would be my choice as well, though the right 12 gauge with the right ammo will exibit no more recoil.
I agree with a 20 semi auto. The mentioned Beretta 390 and 3901 are very good choices. The Franchi 620 and 720 would be a good choice also. All of these models are well made and have a lot of features. They all balance with more weight towards the stock which will be easier to hold up. The Beretta's a pretty light in weight, The Franchi's are even lighter and are smaller in size. The Franchi models also come in a youth stocks. They all have shims to adjust the fit, which is the biggest factor in felt recoil.
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