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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
New owner of a Retay 20g auto, synthetic stock

Genetically speaking, I have been blessed with short arms and the OEM length of pull is too long

The gun is shootable but it's not comfortable and my mounts have been sloppy from low gun (purchased for dove season)

I was able to order from Brownell's a thin universal butt plate that will add only 1/3 inch

After removing the factory pad to measure for aftermarket, I mounted the gun (sans recoil pad) and it felt absolutely normal

Would I be daft to go shooting without the pad?
 

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I think that you should have bought the wood stock, so that it could be more easily shortened.
I don't know how recoil tolerant you are, but this old guy needs a pad.
Otherwise, flinching is sure to follow.
 

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Lots of high end shotguns have wood but plates with no padding. Both my 16 ga's do. I don't notice the difference, but I also don't use them 100's of rounds on clays. I do shoot 2-3 boxes with my thrower and don't notice and I hunt pheasants with 1-1/8oz Golden Pheasants
 

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Of course, you can shoot the gun sans recoil pad…it's your gun…however, you may wish to add a layer or three of moleskin covered with black electrical tape to hold it in place.

This should provide a modicum of softness and protection from the edges of the synthetic stock.

And once the universal thin pad arrives, you can bolt it on and go dove hunting too.

I recommend you check out the thinnest Kick Eez pad available…they are made from sorbothane and really soak up recoil…and any gunsmith can grind it to fit the retay stock.
 

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A hard buttplate was once pretty common and I still prefer to shoot a Sweet 16 with the factory plate and stock at pheasants....just looks right and works fine on birds even tho, horrors...my lop was fitted at a speck over 16". So what?
Recoil tho is not the only reason to mount a pad....decreasing the slipperiness is a good thing, even with perfect mounting action.
And, I have indeed noticed the Sweet slip a bit but the small tradeoff is worth it, to me.

To you, is the point....in tradeoffs and in use for the gun.
Clays are likely to be helped by a bit of recoil ease and stickiness.
Fit and try, pun intended, is likely the best advice....adjust as experience indicates.
Experience and desire trumps message board opinion.
 

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Just try it and see how it is. I have shot some 12 gauge gas autos without recoil pad, and it was not bad. Maybe your 20 inertia won't be too bad, try it and see.
 

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the old win 120's all come with a plastic butt plate, so did the Remington sportsmans models, so did some of the Winchester and Remington rifles.
I think a semi auto shotgun should be manageable.
 

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Every gun having a recoil pad is actually a relatively recent trend. Years ago not having a recoil pad was the norm. Shooting a 20 gauge with dove loads should not be an issue. For hunting dove a shooting vest with a shoulder pad might help.
I think, most importantly, don't let not having a pad get in your head. It's not that big a deal. Concentrate on shooting and the recoil should not be an issue. As long as your don't spend a lot of time thinking about it.
 

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The only "problem" might be the "sharpness" at the edge of the butt. Try it first, and if it is reasonably comfortable for you and fits well, you might try putting a very small radius on the butt with a file or sandpaper for comfort.
 

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You can shoot the gun however you like, but all the plastic stocks I have ever dealt with just have a thin plastic edge around the perimeter of the stock when the butt pad is removed. The amount of surface area contacting your shoulder is going to be minimal and the edges are usually fairly sharp.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
New butt plate from Brownell's worked like a charm. Cut at least 1/2 inch from LOP. Gun was very comfortable for the dove open in Eastern WA. Got my 30 birds for an evening and morning shoot
35026
 

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I know a young kid that shoots 20 ga w/o recoil pad. If he doesn’t think about it, he doesn’t think about it.
having said that I like my recoil pads.
 

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I Imagine theres nothing stopping you from padding your shoulder instead of the gun? I've done that before: fold up an old towel and throw it over my shoulder, makes it easy to get the right length. I'm one of those guys thats built like a gorilla, my knuckles drag on the ground. Long arms.
 
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