First Shotgun, Info needed


September 3, 2008, 10:03 AM
I just picked up a shotgun at an estate sale. It is the first shotgun that I have ever bought. I was looking at this gun to shoot skeet. I have read the generic online history of the gun but I was looking at trying to find out a little more specifically about the model and any quirkiness it might have. It is a Winchester Model 12 - 16 ga. with a 2 3/4 chamber. I am not sure of the choke. Under the model and the chamber numbers it was the letters "MOD". I am not sure what that stands for. Also, I am not sure of the manufacture date, I think it was in the late 50's. The serial # on the gun is 1435XXX. Any information is appreciated.

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September 3, 2008, 10:18 AM
Well, that's a modified choke. A bit too tight for skeet. I am not a Winchester guy, but one will be along. If you plan to keep the gun, and it is a good gun, you may want to invest in screw in choke tubes. Model 12 extra barrels, especially in 16 gauge, are pretty dear.

September 3, 2008, 10:29 AM
Awesome. Yeah, I would definitely look to have screw in choke tubes installed on it if you intend to use it for skeet, or you can have the choke opened up a bit to improved cylinder, or skeet. Here's a sample price list to give you an idea on how much it runs.

September 3, 2008, 11:06 AM
that's an awesome pheasant gun

original model 12's sell for a nice sum; depending on what you paid and your long-term views on it, ANY modifications will diminish it's collector/resale value tremendously

ones I am seeing on line start around $600 and go up to over $1500 depending, of course on particular version, finish, etc.....

just something to think about

September 3, 2008, 11:53 AM
A great shotgun no doubt. You may find the expense of shooting a 16 ga a little pricey over the long run. 16ga ammo is a little harder to find than in past years. I suspect it will cost you a bit more than the more common 12 or 20 gauge that is so popular now.

You being a novice, I suggest you take it to a good gunsmith to have it looked over before shooting. A gun smith can show you how to disassemble and clean it properly while doing an evaluation.

You may also find some good help via the well established shooters at your local skeet range.

As has been said, the modified choke is a little tight for skeet, but that would not keep me from using it if that is what I got! Lots of modified choke guns out there that work well if used properly on many tasks.

Good luck and welcome to the hobby!

September 3, 2008, 12:43 PM
My list says 1954 for year of manufacture. A coincidence, My 16 ga Model 12 with modified choke was also made in '54. Great gun, and my Grandfathers gauge of choice. I choose to keep mine as is, for sentimental reasons. The majority of the above is good sound advice. Modified is my prefered all around choke, but kind'a tight for skeet. Taylor the gun to your special needs to a point. Anything that drastically alters the looks, will degrade value the most. Congratulations on owning a piece of "American" history.:)

stiletto raggio
September 3, 2008, 01:24 PM
The Coolest model 12 I ever saw was a 12 gauge laying across the hood of a HMMWV in Tikrit. A Major who was attached to SF showed up in country without a long gun and the weapons sergeant gave him a cut-down Vietname era Model 12, Ordnance stamp and everything. Awesome.

The Model 12 has a cult following, and for good reason. A pure classic and a great first shotgun. I would recommend finding a good price for 16 gauge shells online and buying a few cases. Ammo in general isn't getting any cheaper, and 16 gauge is stiff wherever you find it.

Care to post a pic?

September 3, 2008, 01:40 PM
I do not think I will modify the choke and I will probably keep it in its current configuration and condition. Even though this is my first shotgun purchase, I have bought many rifles and handguns, and I think this gun is in pretty good shape. I would estimate the bluing at about 75-80% and the wood just has some minor scratching from use. There was some minor surface rust but I am working on getting it taken care of with some 000 steel wool. I examined the bore and it is pretty clean, no rust that I've seen and the action seems pretty solid. So I would hate to modify something that old that has some value. I will probably go out and get something with adjustable or multiple chokes. I guess it wasn't to bad a buy for a $100.:)

if and when I get a chance I will try to get a picture posted.

September 3, 2008, 02:05 PM
I guess it wasn't to bad a buy for a $100.

Thievery!!! absolute Thievery!!! :D Jokes aside, its gotta be worth $400-$600 and probably toward the higher end. If you have a Cabelas near you , they had 16 ga shotshells made by Estate for $52.90 a ten box flat last weekend at the Buda Tx. store. Your choice 7.5 or 8 shot. Once again, congratulations on a great buy.:)

September 3, 2008, 02:17 PM
Great buy. I once went to this old mans house because he had mod 12 for sale for $100. I got there with intent to buy in any condition and give to my dad. He collects them. So the old man shows me the gun and its actually a mod 1911sl. Knowing almost nothing of the model except for that it was Winchesters first attempt at a semi auto I bought it. The gun was in about 50% condition on a good day. I looked up prices on gunbroker and found that a could make 50$ -shipping. I still have it but everytime I hear a story about a good deal like yours I get envious. Congrats on a great gun.:)

September 3, 2008, 02:43 PM
3pairs12, I happened to be at the right place at the right time. The daughter of the guns late owner told me that she did not like guns and was just going to turn it in to the police. Since I noticed that it was a Winchester, and I knew that most of their rifles hold there value, I offered her the $100. I did not know its true value but I thought at the least it would be a decent shooter given the shape. Most people that say that they are going to turn a gun into the police normally are the kind that will not sale a gun, so I was kind of surprised she took me up on the deal.

September 3, 2008, 04:07 PM
Congrats on the find, get out there and use it. I donít believe there is a smoother pump gun then the Mod 12. Out of all the firearms in the collection, the one I have is the most prized as it was my grandfathers and the one most likely to pulled out of the safe during the hunting season. I canít even fathom the amount of birds that succumbed to the business end of this one firearm.

September 4, 2008, 07:29 AM
Thanks everyone for you thoughts on the shotgun. I may even go bird hunting with my brother-in-law now.

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