.410 vs. .28 gauge


White Stallion
March 1, 2006, 04:33 PM
I am thinking about purchsing a shotgun for birds, groundhog, squirrel, chipmunk, and othere small game and pests. What gauge would be best for me because I am not very big at all so I am concaerned about recoil. I dont need much nock-down power for just small birds so that is barely an issue. But I still want to be able to fire a tight pattern and kill a bird in one shot. I no next to nothing about shotguns so advice would be much appreciated.

If you enjoyed reading about ".410 vs. .28 gauge" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
March 1, 2006, 04:43 PM
By far the 28ga is a better round, but it sounds more like you need a pest gun like the .410. Shells will be about the same price, with a wider selection in .410 shells. Either shell will do what you want. The 28ga has a 3/4oz payload, where the .410 has 1/2 to 11/16oz depending on what length shell you buy, 2.5" or 3". A 28ga has the best pattern by far. I'm sure there will be others chime in as well.

Jim Watson
March 1, 2006, 04:45 PM
The 28 ga is far superior; BUT price (high) and availability (low) of 28 ga shells anywhere off the skeet field will hurt your feelings.
A 20 gauge gas operated auto like Remington 1100 will be comfortable to shoot and easier to feed.

March 1, 2006, 04:50 PM
Theoretically a 28 should give a better pattern due to the larger bore size. I've shot quite a bit with both, and probably in reality there's not a lot of difference, bu the edge would go to the 28.

The groundhog is where you'll have trouble. Trust me, I've killed hundreds (grew up on a dairy farm). I'd suggest using the biggest shot you can get (4's) and to get close as possible.

6's or 7 1/2's would be good for birds and chipmunks. Ammo may be tough to find for the 28

The other thought is to get a .22 over .410 and then you have an option

March 1, 2006, 04:52 PM
If it were me I wouldn't choose either a .410 or 28 ga. A 20 ga. will do anything you want to do now and long into the future too. The shells are quite a bit cheaper and the recoil is about the same as a 28 ga. In my own experience I started with a 22-410 at about 9 years of age. Graduated to a 16 ga. hand-me-down to a 12 ga. and back to a 20ga. for over 25 years. The last few years has been with a 28 ga. Ruger o/u used now for mostly pheasants and chuckers and quail.

March 1, 2006, 04:55 PM
i shot 20 gauge out of a relatively light gun, and all it did was buck, didn't even hurt my shoulder. plastic shoulderpad, too. and, 20 is cheaper than 28 gauge. don't know about .410 - but it has a lot more load options than the 28, i believe.

perhaps a 12 or 20 SxS or O/U with the aguila minishells?


March 1, 2006, 05:25 PM
well if we're slowly upping the gauge here, might i suggest a 10ga from a great distance? ;)

March 1, 2006, 05:43 PM
.410 is a round with very limited utility. It's really a 68 Gauge. It was once called "36 Gauge" but that was a lot like the .38 Special -- driven not by real numbers (.38 really measures .357) but marketing (.35 Special sounded puny). That is to say, calling it a 36 Gauge was a flat-out lie.:)

It works great when you really want a .410, so it has its strong adherents. And some people like to shoot it for the challenge. There was a friendly competition between some guys in my trap league a while back. One of them now has a vest with the big numbers 410 on it, over a 25 patch. He said it cost him about $1400 in ammo to get it.

He routinely scores 25 with everything from a first-year 870 to some oddball Valmet O/U that looks like a Model 32.

So it can be established that a .410 cannot replace a 12 Gauge or 20 Gauge for trap or bird hunting. That's not to say you can't hit a bird with .410, just that it won't work anywhere near as well as 12 or 20.

So what about 28?

That depends. If you get a 28 built on a special frame or receiver, then it has its real advantages. You won't find a lighter, quicker shotgun that still packs the punch necessary for hunting and some clay work. But if it's the same size and weight as a 20, with slightly smaller bores, then it's just a 20 Gauge with more expensive ammo, IMHO.

The point of the 28 Gauge is to build the lightest gun with the lightest round, that still functions as desired for upland hunting. Note that a light, quick shotgun is not always what you want! Some serious trap shooters put lead weights in their already big and heavy guns. My new trap gun is a 34" barrelled beast with lead in the buttstock, and it feels great. Wouldn't want to hunt doves with it. Wouldn't want to shoot trap or passing ducks with a 28, either.

Most of us can get what we want from a light, well-made 20 gauge double like a Beretta O/U or the CZ Huglu SxS. The ammo is cheaper, and you can choose heavy or light loads that suit most purposes perfectly.

Unless you have plenty of money, a good sized gun collection, and plans for hunting trips to Argentina, I'd suggest that a 28 is not the best use of your cash. And that a .410 is a waste, unless you have a real need for one, and if you did, you'd already know it.

Carl N. Brown
March 1, 2006, 05:47 PM
Should this be merged with .410 vs 28 gauge?

White Stallion
March 1, 2006, 06:09 PM
For the game and recoil sensitivity what type of shells should I get?

March 1, 2006, 06:19 PM
Depends what kind of birds. There are sparrows and there are turkeys.

March 1, 2006, 07:07 PM
Since you really seem to have no experience with shotguns at all, I would recommend you browse through the "101" threads here in the shotgun section to get familiarized with terms.

For sparrows and nuisance birds, chipmunks and ground squirrels, 7.5's or 8's would be fine. For small game such as squirrel and rabbits, 5's and 6's, would kill groundhogs if your close as well. 28ga does not have factory buckshot loads for bigger critters, that is where reloading comes into it's own. For truly more versatility, the 20ga may benefit you more as others have said. For experienced shotgunners that reload, the 28ga is most people's go-to gun for targets and upland hunting, for those that say no to that, they don't own one. ;)

March 1, 2006, 08:14 PM
get a 20 ga!:)

March 1, 2006, 11:41 PM
I concur with the 20 ga.
A 20 ga. gun will be easier to find.
A box of 20 ga. shells will cost considerably less than .410 or 28's.
A .410 will disentegrate a Chickadee just as much as a 10 ga.
And I'm not very big at all either, and I have a 10 ga, a few 12's, 20's, a 28 and .410.
Take off the skirt and put on the pants.
You'll probably just need to find a decent gun to fit you and that you can shoot well.
Go with the 20. It'll do everything a 12 can.

March 2, 2006, 10:15 AM
You know, once I got a 28 ga. I noticed that Wal-Mart and Dick's Sporting Goods sold 28 ga. ammo. My local gun shops usually have better prices, but I still shop the sales at the chain stores. The best deal so far was a case of AA-HS #8 at Dick's for $4.49 a box.


March 2, 2006, 10:59 AM
I like the .410 a lot. Really a sporting man's gun. If you hunt and pretty much knock down everything you aim at, the .410 offers a whole new challenge.

If you do decide on either, you might want to look into reloading. Once you're setup, the price of shells is considerable less than 12 or 20 gauge as you're using much less lead and that seems to be where the main component cost is really going up.

I've been looking for a 28 gauge now for sometime and just haven't found the right deal to make it happen.

March 2, 2006, 01:45 PM
Why wait on a deal?



March 2, 2006, 02:06 PM

I just paid off $3000 on my GM card thanks to the CDNN deals they had on the SIG/Rizzini guns. Picked up a TR-30 in .410 and a TT-25 in 20 Gauge. Both excellent guns! :)

March 3, 2006, 04:23 PM
I've seen CDNN referenced a few times, but i'm unable to decipher. Can anyone spell it out for me? tia..

March 3, 2006, 05:16 PM
Here you go:


March 4, 2006, 01:19 AM
Most of my shotgunning is with a 28. But then again, I reload. Otherwise, there wouldn't be any way I could afford to shoot it.

Shell Shucker
March 5, 2006, 11:30 PM
Get a 20 ga! An 870 Express, Mossberg, ect. in the $200 range will serve you much better than any single 410 or 28; and you'll have room to grow in what you're able to do with it.... 20 ga shells can be had for HALF the price of 410 or 28.

March 9, 2006, 07:18 PM
28ga shells are cheaper than .410 shells around Oklahoma City.

March 12, 2006, 10:37 PM
+1 for the 20. Your size shouldn't be a factor regarding recoil, only in gun fit, which in turn may affect felt recoil.

March 13, 2006, 01:47 AM
.28 gauge is about a 2.55 caliber. Over two and a half inches. Maybe you meant something else, like 28 gauge, without the decimal point?

Anyway, I guess either is better than a 9mm Flobert.

March 14, 2006, 09:52 PM
Yep, and FWIW, caliber is properly written with no decimal when using the word "caliber." By definition, "caliber" is parts of an inch. Therefore, .41 = 41 caliber.

March 14, 2006, 10:18 PM
The .410 BORE is more versatile, as more factory ammo is available. It is also capable of greater payloads (11/16oz, Vs. 3/4oz).

This being said, the 28 guage DOES pattern far better. Its just plain easyer to hit things. The 28 guage is a good general purpose upland cartridge. The .410 bore on the other hand, is more of an experts cartridge; you have to know your stuff to do well with it.

If you enjoyed reading about ".410 vs. .28 gauge" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!