A Good Shotgun for youth


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lcso
March 12, 2011, 01:35 PM
I am looking for a good 12 ga. shotgun for my 9 year old son for skeet/trap shooting. Any suggestions? Thank you.

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Smoovbiscuit
March 12, 2011, 02:05 PM
Remington 870 is one of my favorite shotguns. I would recommend that over mossberg to just about everyone.

I would also consider a single shot break barrel, they are cheap and light weight. My first shotgun was a 20 gauge sears and roebuck (yeah laugh it up) single shot and I loved it. Obviously sears doesn't make them anymore, but other good manufacturers make single shot 12 and 20 gauges for between 100-150$. They are light weight and reliable. Something to consider.

Glad your starting your son off young! my over protective parents didn't let me go shooting until I was 14, my friends father taught me gun safety and how to shoot trap. I used a Remington 870 and nailed every clay he threw. great memories. Shooting clays is one of my favorite ways to shoot!

Naybor
March 12, 2011, 04:20 PM
My dad started me off at 10 years old with a Stevens 20 ga single shot, but after I later tried a .410 O/U I sure wished he had got me one of those to start with. If you want to do skeet/trap, an O/U, pump, or auto will be required for doubles. I would prefer the O/U myself. The little body of a nine or ten year old is just too weak and light for a 12 ga, IMHO. Heck, at 67 years old, my 12 ga S x S Coach Shotgun is no fun to shoot with full power SD loads, even after I got a better recoil pad for it.



If you do get a 12 for him, start out with low brass, low recoil loads and let him go up from there himself, at his own pace.

BTW, I too am glad you are starting him out young.

oneounceload
March 12, 2011, 04:23 PM
Single shots are hard to do skeet with, even a pump is.

My suggestion would be a semi with a youth stock on it - making sure the gun FITS and the loads in 12 gauge are 3/4 or 7/8 oz loads - no need for any more than that for either game

prid93
March 12, 2011, 05:40 PM
I was just out to the trap/skeet ranger today with an 870. Worked great for trap...skeet I was stuck doing singles because I just could not do it with the pump action. If your looking to shoot skeet I would suggest an over under.

Smoovbiscuit
March 12, 2011, 07:55 PM
Well over unders are ideal IMO, but they are much more pricey than singles. I would not recommend a semi. If the kid can handle the recoil of a 12 gauge he can certainly handle pumping it, or using a break barrel.

I would consider a 20 gauge for him, less recoil than a 12. But it does also has a smaller spread. Have him try out a 12 gauge before you go buying him one.

oneounceload
March 12, 2011, 09:48 PM
I would not recommend a semi.

Based on what???

oneounceload
March 12, 2011, 09:49 PM
would consider a 20 gauge for him, less recoil than a 12. But it does also has a smaller spread. Have him try out a 12 gauge before you go buying him one.

WOW, so many things wrong with these statements - none of which are true

coop923
March 13, 2011, 01:28 PM
I think I would also suggest a semi, especially if you decide to go with a 12 ga. I don't know how big your son is, but I've coached some kids in that age range in trap and follow-up shots (as in trap doubles) are tricky for 95% of them. Working a pump will push most to the limits and most likely not a lot of 2nd targets will be hit. Things happen even quicker in skeet. The semi will also absorb some of the recoil which could be an issue, especially with a 12 ga. and a small frame shooter. I'm not saying it can't be done; we have a shooter this year who started as a ten year old last year with a 20 ga. pump, but went to a 12 ga. 870 youth part way through the season. He was less that 4'6" and couldn't have weighed more than 75 lbs. he was shooting in the 80s out of 100 from the 16 yard line at the end of the season. Conversely, we've had 12 year olds that couldn't hold up the gun for more than a few rounds. Have him shoot a 20 and a 12 and see if recoil is an issue. If it is, go with a 20 and keep the shooting sessions short at first. He won't have fun if he's getting tired and beat up by the gun. Many trap ranges have youth guns that he could try out for size. That might be a good place to start.

451 Detonics
March 13, 2011, 02:13 PM
I would suggest a good youth model semi-auto in 20 gauge. You can buy the Weatherby SA08 for about $400 new. A Franchi or Remington would do well also.

Smoovbiscuit
March 13, 2011, 03:19 PM
@ oneounceload

Quote:
I would consider a 20 gauge for him, less recoil than a 12. But it does also has a smaller spread. Have him try out a 12 gauge before you go buying him one.

"WOW, so many things wrong with these statements - none of which are true"

Whats not true about what I said? I may be wrong about the 20 having a smaller spread (But I don't think I am) but are you saying a 12 gauge has less recoil than a 20? and whats wrong with making sure the kid can handle a 12 before he buys one?

And I said "I would not recommend a semi" meaning my personal opinion is that if someone is learning how to shoot I think the pump our break barrel would be better for making sure the gun isn't loaded when your done, and I think it's important for the kid to understand how the gun works which may be more difficult with a semi. Maybe I am being a little hard on the kid, he is only 9. But I do feel understanding how the gun works is important, and I feel semi would be more prone to accidental discharge, say if he dropped it.

Maybe I should have clarified more, but thats just my opinion. The OP asked for what we recommend, and I let him know. If you don't like what I recommended then feel free to recommend something else.

PS your not supposed to double post.

ldhulk
March 13, 2011, 04:43 PM
Remington made an 1100 in a short, light "special field" model some years ago, and then they changed it slightly and I believe called it an "upland special". The earlier model was available as a pump (870) also. I think the softer recoil of the semi auto would be benificial for a young shooter, and they handle very nicely. Single shot break actions are cheap and light, but they kick pretty hard in 12 ga. You might look at a Stoeger coach gun with 20 inch barrels and screw in chokes. Their short overall length is easier for a small person to handle.

451 Detonics
March 13, 2011, 04:55 PM
And I said "I would not recommend a semi" meaning my personal opinion is that if someone is learning how to shoot I think the pump our break barrel would be better for making sure the gun isn't loaded when your done, and I think it's important for the kid to understand how the gun works which may be more difficult with a semi.

Actually the semi is the easiest to learn on, and the safest. The bolt will lock back when empty allowing for single loading. There are no small action release buttons to operate to clear the action...just pull the bolt handle to the rear. A lot less to pinch fingers than on a pump or break open. And the semi will reduce felt recoil.

FLNT4EVR
March 13, 2011, 06:36 PM
OK ,9yrs old is a little young,but thats ok.Trap is a 12ga game,and anything else puts you at a very real disadvantage.Skeet can be shot with any ga. and shot well. So ,I would recomend ,a gas operated 12 ga,with good 1oz loads,and interchangeable chokes.A 28 inch barrel would be my choice with a vent rib,single bead.The most important thing at this age is that the THE GUN FITS.Take the time to take him to a good gun shop and have the stock measured and fit to your son.Later you can add a Morgan adjustable recoil pad. If the gun doesn't fit he realy doesn't have a chance, and he will learn a lot of bad habits, that will be hard to correct later. He will get frustrated, and convince himself that he can't do it. Agood fitting gun is a joy to shoot,tames recoil, and gets you on target faster and consistantly,which is the most important part of the whole game.

oneounceload
March 13, 2011, 08:59 PM
Whats not true about what I said? I may be wrong about the 20 having a smaller spread (But I don't think I am) but are you saying a 12 gauge has less recoil than a 20? and whats wrong with making sure the kid can handle a 12 before he buys one?


My 12 gauge DOES have less recoil than my 20 - why? Because my 12 weighs a pound more than my 20 - both of which are target guns - which means ACTUAL recoil will be less with the 12. My 12 gauge loads are equal to 20 or 28 gauge, which means they pattern better and recoil less, and are easier to reload as well

BAD_KARMA
March 23, 2011, 09:17 PM
Sorry for jumping in a little late on this one but I will share my experience with you. I started my son on the shot gun when he turned 11. He had shot 22 rifles and pistols prior to that. At 9 unless your boy is a curve blower you will not find a 12 ga. that will fit him. They are all going to be too big. My son and I looked at a lot of guns until we found one that he thought he liked. He picked the condor youth o/u. I thought it would be a good choice. on paper it was. But the reality of the matter was that the fixed breech on a light short gun made it recoil/jump so much it was not the good learning experience that I was looking for. Remember that the skills he learns now will stick with him for the good or the bad. So even if he tells you the recoil does not bother him test him once in a while with an empty chamber if he finches it does.

So any way after some more tries I got a 410 mossberg bolt and hand through some clays till he got pretty good. Then I picked up a Franchi youth in 20 ga. He loves it. Light, negligible recoil and fun to shoot. by the time I get the question "you want to shoot some trap?" out of my mouth he is half way to he safe.

have fun be safe and remember when you are gone these are the times he will remember.

toivo
March 23, 2011, 09:30 PM
Something like this:

http://www.remington.com/products/firearms/compact/shotguns/model-11-87/model-11-87-sportsman-compact-synthetic.aspx

I think a 20 is better for a young kid. It throws enough shot to break clays---more than enough for skeet, and I have seen people do OK with 20-gauges on trap. Also, it has the add-on stock, so it can grow with him. When he's full grown, he can get a 12-gauge and keep this one for fun or to pass on to HIS kid.

The-Reaver
March 23, 2011, 09:37 PM
If you don't mind a major drop in caliber I would say a Snake Charmer in 410. Things are just plain out fun.

txhoghunter
March 23, 2011, 10:01 PM
For kids I am against 12 ga and 20 ga single shots....they just kick too much. (trust me, its what I started with at 8)

However, for trap and skeet, I'm not a fan of the .410

My second shotgun was a Remington 870 Express 20 ga youth and it is a fantastic gun.

However, the escort 20 ga semi automatic is also a great starter shotgun.

JimKirk
March 23, 2011, 11:00 PM
There is no doubt... that a 8.25/8.5 lbs 12 ga shooting a lite loaded 3/4 oz load... is going to recoil less than a 6/6.25 lbs 20 ga shooting a 7/8 oz load!

The big question is ... whether a light weight kid can fit/hold/swing such a gun like the heavy 12 ga? A kid that is "man enough" to handle the gun ... probably won't be bothered by some recoil either.

Shrink that gun down to a more manageable (kid)sized gun ... with the right length of pull ... with a good recoil pad and a lite 3/4 oz load ... you got a gun/load that even a kid will enjoy.

Trust me ...I was a "lite weight" kid for the first twenty years ... wish I could say that for the last twenty!

Jimmy K

husker
March 23, 2011, 11:46 PM
I have a 410 Mossberg youth 500. good lil shotgun. cycles both 2-3/4 & 3 inch
410 shells are getting ridiculously expensive. What about the 28 gauge for a kid?

jbkebert
March 24, 2011, 12:08 AM
My first shotgun was a 870 wingmaster in 28 ga. Both of my boys now own one. While there are some 12ga youth models they are few and far between. A 20ga like a 870 youth or a semi-auto like a 1187 make fine guns that will offer years upon years of service.

I am personally against a single shot hammer gun for any youth for a starter gun. Not real fond of any hammer gun rifle or not for kids. Until they get used to it they can be very awkward to cock and even more so to decock. Just my humble opinion.

In our hunter education classes we use 1187's for live fire. The 10 shotguns we own each get fired a thousand rounds or better every year. All have been going strong for several years now. They are used from everything from skeet, youth dove, turkey, phesant and quail hunts. Seems to me that they have proven their worth.

jbkebert
March 26, 2011, 11:45 PM
I picked up a Browning BPS youth 20ga today. Man this things seems like it will be the cats meow. 3" or 2 3/4" bottom eject, 4 choke tubes, nice wood. I am still love the 870 wingmasters but this little gun is nice.

JimKirk
March 27, 2011, 12:13 PM
jb ...
I had one of those(BPS youth)...I traded it off on another gun... been kicking my own rear for the last 20 years. One of the best shooting guns I've ever owned!

Jimmy K

Mark8252
March 28, 2011, 10:59 PM
A cheaper 20ga over under. Or better yet a nicer one used. If he can actually handle the recoil of a 12ga then make it a 12ga. You want one with interchangeable chokes so he can shoot trap, skeet and hunt all with the same gun. Have him measured for length of pull. He may need a shorter stock and that translates to youth model shotgun. Another option is to have the stock cut to his size including the shoulder pad. Spacers can be fit if the child grows. Talk to a gunsmith, this is not as expensive as it sounds.
Remember that how he likes shooting in the beginning will likely decide if he likes shooting at all. Fitting a shotgun with recoil he can handle is what will help him the most. You will find auto's to be much cheaper than over unders.
Nothing wrong with a auto.

JimKirk
March 29, 2011, 09:04 AM
http://www.winchester.com/products/shotshell-ammunition/winlite-low-recoil/low-recoil-low-noise-target-load/Pages/default.aspx

20 GA 7/8 oz Low Recoil , Low Noise rounds

Jimmy K

cfullgraf
March 29, 2011, 11:00 AM
I am looking for a good 12 ga. shotgun for my 9 year old son for skeet/trap shooting. Any suggestions? Thank you.

I agree with the comments that oneounceload has made.

Assuming the young man can hold a 12 ga, a semi auto or over/under will serve him well with 7/8 oz loads.

Either get a youth model or get a second stock and have it fitted for your son. With a second stock, eventually you can return the full size stock to the gun when he out grows the cut down stock.

I am partial to over/unders, but that is me.

A number of years ago, I lucked into a cut down stock for one of my Citoris. It fit my daughter well so that she could use the shotgun. I still have the full size stock if I want to use the gun. But, I never get a chance, the short stock fits my 5'-2" wife like a glove as well.

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