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What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

What gage do you shoot for upland birds?

12
156
49%
20
136
43%
28
24
8%
410
2
1%
 
Total votes : 318

Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby ezzy333 » Sun Feb 20, 2011 10:16 pm

Well said Mountaineer

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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby nikegundog » Sun Feb 20, 2011 11:29 pm

With the 12 gauge you have on average 28% more shot than you do with a 20 gauge which means you can open your choke up more, and make use of a larger pattern. More open your choke the larger your pattern, simple, larger pattern more birds killed cleanly. Yes, if you shoot like Tom Knapp you would kill every bird clean and 40 yards regardless with a 20 or a 12. If you shoot like most hunters you will kill more birds cleanly with a 12 gauge.
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby Mountaineer » Mon Feb 21, 2011 6:03 am

Slight quibble...a pattern does not get larger....a pattern is not 20 feet wide, for an extreme example.
Patterns are fixed...pattern shape can be altered by some speciality chokes.
Use less choke or more shot and the shot density will change.
Less choke does not = more birds....always.
Where the pellets are in any pattern and in what shape they are found and at a good distance is what kills more birds....not always simple choke manipulation.

If you want to have a more efficient pellet distribution within any pattern then that can be a goal and can result in more birds grassed as the edges are most deprived of pellets and straight-flying pellets.
I used to pattern extensively....trying to move pellets from the 20" core to the outer 5" ring is difficult.
The core will have more pellets whether it be from a cylinder or a full given average shot pellet quality.
One can not eyeball patterns...doing the work tells the truest story with any project.
Pellet manipulation can be done by various methods but getting much past 35% into that outer ring is tough...it will result tho in a greater odds of more targets broken and may help with bird shooting as well.
No given tho.
Actually, pattern concern, as with most shooting factors, can be taken too far....best to use a sense of proportion, and focus, in all such dealings.
Many factors at play...on different days.
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby nikegundog » Mon Feb 21, 2011 11:25 am

I tend to disagree, I believe that a pattern does open up when you open your choke up. You will not find many trap shooters using a full choke. If the pattern doesn't change why do they sell chokes? I think that the easiest way the move more pellets out to the outer five inches is to open the choke and add 28% more pellets. If you add more pellets to the outer 5" you will kill more birds.
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby Mountaineer » Mon Feb 21, 2011 11:50 am

The best pattern is one where all of the available pellets are evenly spaced to fill the entire pattern...in a perfect world.

Folks most often sell choke tubes for density and distance reasons....and good marketing.
Many times they are sold because we humans dither over what is best and seek to blame anything mechanical for issues with target or bird.

A pattern does open with less choke if you mean more room between each pellet...perhaps the issue is the different definitions of a pattern.
For me, it is the standard 30" and true width often is irrelevant based upon a lack of pellet density.
A standard is important if one is to truely compare one factor to another.
Otherwise, it is all guess by gosh.
For woodcock, shot closer than many birds, a 22"-24" pattern at shot taken distance for evaluation seems to offer the best chance at the little bogsucker and is useful for comparisons.

As far as moving pellets in an efficient manner, the quick thought would be to open the choke but IME, that was seldom useful or dependable to an appreciable degree.
Seems as if it would be so...but no.
A better way is thru either pellet hardness, wad choice or powder burn rate as possibly the top three.
Remember the idea is to move pellets into the annular ring and not out of the pattern.
Most folks do not and it sounds as if you have patterned very little or to a less than optimal degree, procedure-wise.
Just as well, there are other more important things to do and the minutae can get addicting.

You will not find many Registered Trapshooters shooting less than full choke. :!: :roll:
Some, I did, shot IM at the 16 but often preferred XF for what it indicated when I shot.
Certainly, Handicap is a Full choke game.
That was an odd comment re Trap, N.
One can break many targets from the 16 with many degrees of choke...average break distance from the 16 is only 32 yards.
But 16 yards targets is not all of Trapshooting or the end all for practicing to shoot Registered Trap.
Perhaps here the difference is between being a Trapshooter...and shooting targets on a trap field.
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby Ryman Gun Dog » Fri Jan 13, 2012 1:37 pm

Grant,
I am a Grouse hunter 90% of the time, and 80% of that time I use a 16 Gauge L.C. Smith double gun. However I do use everything from 12 to 28 Gauge, depending on what upland hunting I am doing and in what habitat I am hunting.
Might want to consider 16 guage guns in your poll for truer results.
RGD/Dave
Last edited by Ryman Gun Dog on Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby nj gsp » Sat Jan 14, 2012 9:04 pm

Wow - amazing to re-read this post from the past, and it's interesting how my gun preference has changed - except the 16 gauge is still #1 for me and so I still haven't voted.

Upland guns:
1. A.H. Fox SxS 16 gauge
2. Browning Citori 525 Field 16 gauge
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby Ryman Gun Dog » Sun Mar 11, 2012 11:05 am

NJ GSP,
I can see right now why you like the 16 Gauge so much, a good Fox 16 Guage Grouse gun is very hard to beat, unless you own a Similar Parker or Side Lock Smith!
RGD/Dave

Top a DHE Parker 16, Bottom a Special order L.C. Smith 16 Silver Breech, along with your A.H. Fox, the best Grouse guns ever made.
You ever need to sell your Fox 16 gauge Grouse Gun just let me know.
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby Thunder » Sun Mar 11, 2012 4:45 pm

I have done most of my upland game hunting with a Browning Citori 20 ga for the last twenty years. I have a Citori in 12 GA also and switch off with it from time to time but the 20 is very light and short and swings like a dream so I always end up going back to it. It is also perfect for dense grouse cover.
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby nj gsp » Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:08 pm

Ryman Gun Dog wrote:NJ GSP,
I can see right now why you like the 16 Gauge so much, a good Fox 16 Guage Grouse gun is very hard to beat, unless you own a Similar Parker or Side Lock Smith!
RGD/Dave

Top a DHE Parker 16, Bottom a Special order L.C. Smith 16 Silver Breech, along with your A.H. Fox, the best Grouse guns ever made.
You ever need to sell your Fox 16 gauge Grouse Gun just let me know.


Sorry Dave, you are out of luck. I'd sell every other gun I own before I part with the Fox.

And I need to update my list; I have a new toy and the 525 has been bumped back to 3rd chair:

Upland guns:
1. A.H. Fox SxS 16 gauge
2. Browning Citori Superlight Feather 16 gauge
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Re: What gauge do you shoot for upland birds?

Postby Ryman Gun Dog » Thu Mar 15, 2012 10:50 am

nj GSP,
Oh I figured that much, a man addicted to Grouse hunting developes a feel for a shotgun and good Fox double guns are way up there on that list of incredible Grouse guns, they become like part of your body, you don't even know when the gun goes off, as the dog retrieves the Grouse and you reload the chamber. Smooth as silk and fast as lightening, especially the 16's
RGD/Dave

16 Double guns a Grouse hunters favorite tool.
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