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I will be purchasing a new 12ga for upland birds, sporting clays, and some duck hunting. What barrel length is recommended? I was leaning toward 28". However, one of the Berettas I like is only available in 26".

Rick
 

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I like a 28" barrel for waterfowling, but for upland birds, sporting clays a 26" should be fine. If your shooting over decoys, and not at high flying birds the 26" will work fine. For further out birds, I think the longer barrel gives you an advantage.
 

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The 26" will feel like a much quicker gun. I own both, and you wouldn't believe how 2" affects the handling of a gun. I recommend that you go shoulder them both, as they both have their own advantages. The beretta auto's seem like long guns to me anyways, so a 26" may be perfect.
 

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Don't sweat the 2". Your gun will be a compromise at best. For upland and ducks over decoys the 26" would be ideal. For longer range waterfowl and sporting clays, longer would be a little nicer, but a 26" auto is nearly the same length as a 30" over/under, so you're still good to go.
 

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bbl length depends on the action type as well. An autoloader or pump has an action about 2" longer that a break open gun, so a 26" auto has the same sight radius as a 28" O/U. That said, bbl length in an ideal world depends on what you are hunting. A SXS with 25-26 bbls is great for grouse and woodcock, but might be harder to shoot for other birds, while a 28-30 pump/auto is great for waterfowl but terrible for grouse. God created all these different game birds in order that you can buy more guns.
 

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The 26" will feel like a much quicker gun.
+1 on that! I just got an 1187 with a 26" barrel after much contemplation on which size I should get. Mounts and sights much faster for me than a 28". I figure if I need a 28" i'll just buy the extra barrel (better yet a 30" for those high flyers but I have yet to find one for the 1187 supermag).! But I also wondered what the big difference would be! Does anyone have any ballistic information on the difference of the 2"'s? What about extended choke tubes? Will this be a good alternative to gain that extra inch or two or will it be a waste?
 

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aknitesky said:
I will be purchasing a new 12ga for upland birds, sporting clays, and some duck hunting. What barrel length is recommended? I was leaning toward 28". However, one of the Berettas I like is only available in 26".

Rick
If your going to SC's, it's my opinion to go with the longer barrel. It seems that the trend is to go longer. It's returning back to the good old days again!!!
 

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I have a 26" barrel on my Nova. It is very quick! I have used it for everything from grouse, to geese, to moose. Whatever you get will be fine. Barrel length is more of a personal preference really...
 

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Got a 26" on my 1187 skeet gun swings real nice even on pheasent, kinda wishin' my old Wingmaster had a shorter tube too?
 

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Slow speed steel likes a shorter barrel (thats why they became popular in the first place), fast speed steel doesn't. Lead and most of the alternatives to steel don't seem to care all that much.
Since you are wanting an auto you can always buy an extra barrel, 47 custom made chokes, humteen rolls of butcher paper, and play to your hearts content trying to figure out what makes a particuler load behave the way it does. :shock:

tom
 

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For an auto, 26" is probably the best all-around length. And, like said before, you can always get another barrel.

P_102
 
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