The maverick 88 comes with a Cylinder Bore fixed choke. Does the fixed choke mean it can't be changed? I am buying it primarily for home defense but do make it out a few times a year squirel hunting. I do have a .22 that I use but if I could I would like to have an option of a shotgun. What would you suggest with a 12 gauge cylinder bore for squirels or should I just stick to my .22.
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May 10, 2006, 12:14 PM
Does the fixed choke mean it can't be changed?
Cylinder Bore by definition has no choke restriction .
Fixed means that there is no adjustable or interchangable choke tubes.
So the answer is: yes - it can't be changed.
You have to buy another barrel to widen the use of the gun behond present capability.
May 10, 2006, 12:35 PM
Yes the fixed choke smoothbore barrel, good slugger. Luckily any barrel for a 500 will fit the M88, easy swap out.
May 10, 2006, 01:24 PM
Before you get a different barrel, you should take it out and pattern it with some different loads, and see if it meets or exceeds your expectations for a squirrel gun.
In the end, you need to judge by what show up on the patterning board, not what is stamped on the barrel. Some of the premium shotshells with buffered loads and high tech wads can throw a tighter pattern than you would think out of a cylinder choked shotgun.
No use surmising or theorizing when one can test it out.
May 10, 2006, 05:03 PM
My wife has a saying- "Any project is feasible if properly funded." So no, there is NO SUCH THING as a fixed choke- IF your checkbook is healthy enough and your desire is strong. Any number of companies are in business to install choke tubes in otherwise plain barrels, and will be happy to have your business. Generally though this costs about as much as another complete barrel, so you might be better off shopping for something more suited to the task. Mossberg/Maverick barrels are pretty commonly available, and not too expensive.
Good luck with it,
May 12, 2006, 05:47 AM
One more option that you have is to get the barrel back bored but leave a portion of the barrel at the muzzle at its current dimension. Back boring increases the diameter of the barrel and doing so will create some choke. However, just as Lee Lapin stated, your costs may run you equal to or more than a new barrel with this option.
A second option would be to just polish the bore of your shotgun with a barrel hone and have the forcing cone lengthened. Many times there is a vast improvement to your patterns by having FC lengthened and the barrel honed. However, just like the previous option, this kind of work will cost you but not nearly as much as back boring.
A good gunsmith can easily handle either of these two jobs.
Finally, the best advice from a previous post so far has been from bowfin which is to get it patterned. How do you know you need more choke unless you have thoroughly tested it with various loads in its current condition. Besides, the fact remains that even after you get the barrel modified you will still need to test pattern the gun. That is the best part of this process anyway, testing!
May 12, 2006, 03:31 PM
Choked barrels are available for $130 in various lengths from 20" to 28".