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Advice for O/U Shotgun on a Shoestring

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by david58, Sep 1, 2019.

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  1. david58

    david58 Member

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    My wife is interested in grouse hunting here in NM, and of course I am enthusiastically going along on this ride. Issue is that her only shotgun is a 42" barrel flintlock fowling piece, not exactly where she wants to start out chasing Grouse. Thinking an O/U is nice, but I know little about the less expensive guns that I see out there. Would appreciate your counsel, and thank you in advance.

    David
    New Mexico
     
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  2. troy fairweather

    troy fairweather Member

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    Like what guys have told me on my thread I had. It takes $1000 to get a ok one. Most guys minimal is the Browning.
     
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  3. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    Congrats on having a mrs who wants to hunt with you.
    My best heartfelt advice is to steer clear of buying a cheap o/u.
    Maybe a used cz, browning or Beretta.
    I'm not going to list brands for fear of upsetting others....but my mossberg silver reserve hasnt held up well to bird hunting plus a couple dozen rounds of Clay's. It's running now because I put a new set of springs in it.
    Watch the used racks for a good o/u if I were you.
     
  4. George P

    George P Member

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    Say N O to a cheap O/U. You are better off with a quality used O/U or a semi. Crappy barrel regulation, poor metallurgy, rough internals all make a cheap O/U a waste of money
     
  5. entropy

    entropy Member

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    Don't get one. Or better put: You can choose two of the three: Cheap, quality, O/U. A used Browning Citori is your best bet.
     
  6. George P

    George P Member

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    Or a Beretta - depends on which one fits the best
     
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  7. mokin

    mokin Member

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    A big + 1 to everything written above. The last gun I bought was a used Browning Citori XT. After using a Winchester 1300 for trap for the last six years it has taken me a while to relearn a few things but it's been fun. I admit, that gun cost more than I really wanted to pay but deep down I'm pretty sure it was worth it.
     
  8. George P

    George P Member

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    When you factor in the cost of ammo and targets, the cost of the gun is nothing, even a $12K Kolar, Kreighoff or Perazzi
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  9. eastbank

    eastbank Member

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    the used gun racks at gun shops can be your friend, as good quality does not come cheap. if she is going to become a long time hunter you should get her a good shotgun that fits her. I bought this used browning citori upland special 20 ga(2-3/4 chamber) with 26" barrels using plain invecta choke tubes in very good condition for 600.00. as I like a long lop I put a slip on recoil pad and its a very good small game shotgun, light short and quick to the shoulder. tho its a little wippy for the clays games. if you lived close I would let her use it for a season.
     

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  10. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart member

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    I have a Stoeger Outback 20" barrel and have been shooting the heck out of it this summer. NO it is not a trap gun, and if I was going for that or dove hunting I would go with my Beretta or Benilli. I will use for Deer and Turkey which is a fine gun. Solid, Utilitarian, based on the Beretta design and of course Stoeger is owned by beretta.. And so far has proven to be completely reliable. Easy to tote though thick swampy terrain.For doves etc. I would not choose any OV. JMO
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  11. eastbank

    eastbank Member

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    for a new shooter a single barrel, double barrel or a o/u maybe safer to start hunting with, easy to load and unload and see if it is loaded. until they get their feet wet, a semi-pump may be harder to use for a new shooter.
     
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  12. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    david58

    Think used. An O/U on a shoestring budget typically doesn't go very well in the long term. Start with quality and you'll ultimately be miles ahead in terms of getting your money's worth out of a shotgun. One brand of O/U shotguns somewhat overlooked is Franchi. If you like the fit and feel of a Beretta, you'll find the Franchi to be very similar in design, handling, and reliability. Let us know what you come up with.
     
  13. The Evangelist Cowboy

    The Evangelist Cowboy Member

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    Is anybody going to San Antone?
    I second the used rack as well, While I have heard good reviews about the Stoeger series of O/Us I dont have any experience with them to make an educated recommendation, I would look to either increase my budget or got pump/semi.
     
  14. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    A friend started out with loaner guns, including my Anschutz/Miroku O/U, but when it came down to buying a gun that "fitted" her, she bought a Benelli Ultra Light auto. She could have gotten a pretty good O/U for the money, but that Benelli and a couple of bird dogs in a pheasant field are her idea of good sport.
     
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  15. david58

    david58 Member

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    Thanks for the wisdom - I figured there would be issues with a cheap gun, you have confirmed some of them for me. Sounds like the used rack is the place to go. As mentioned by one responder to my op, we both like the idea of a break action gun for the safety value. There's a bit of romance in a break action gun for me, grew up hunting with a broke open gun over my arm while we walked miles in pursuit of the elusive bobwhite. I think if we do trap, I might get Rem 1100s, even in 12ga they shoot so polite that us two old birds wouldn't be too stoved up after a bunch of clays (or dove...).
     
  16. Jack Ryan

    Jack Ryan Member

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    Weatherby.
     
  17. Charlie Martinez

    Charlie Martinez Member

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    Most women that shoot trap or skeet regularly where I shoot seem to prefer autos due to the reduced felt recoil. The Remington 1100 is most popular & it's a very good shotgun for much less money than any new O/U of equal quality.
     
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  18. clang

    clang Member

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    Not sure how big the Mrs. is, but a used Beretta in 20 ga is a good place to start. Browning Citori works too, but they tend to be a little heavier. Assuming upland hunting, you don't want to be dragging an 8 lb gun all day, especially if she is petite. Weight matters.

    Unfortunately, the 20 ga will probably cost you more, and shotguns are at their most expensive right now just before bird season.

    Another option is an old Savage 311 SxS or a store brand equivalent. Maybe $300-500 and you get a reliable double barrel shotgun. 12, 16 or 20 gauge, but again, some of the 12 gauge guns can be on the heavy side.
     
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  19. joed

    joed Member

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    I learned the lesson about buying a quality O/U from the start. Got rid of the first one and bought a used Browning Superposed.

    There is no substitute for quality.
     
  20. Jessesky

    Jessesky Member

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    A side by side can also be an option. You can get a historical and quality piece for some traditional grouse hunting!

    Otherwise I think the 686 is great. The action is good, and it’s the same quality as the $3,000 686 models! Just not with as nice furnishings
     
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  21. DocRock

    DocRock Member

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    SxS. There are still some quite good SxS guns available in the $500 range. One of the best value for money guns are the Zabala Hermanos made "Churchill" Anson&Deeley box lock ejector guns imported to the US by Kassnar. They come up on GB and some of the other sites from time. A 26" 20 games BLE and a stock fitting would be under a grand and make for a very pleasant grouse gun. Get a double trigger gun. They are more reliable in guns of that era and are very easily learned.
     
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  22. cdb1

    cdb1 Member

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    I’d get a used Beretta or Browning O/U or a semi. Over and above everything else I’d let her choose. And I definitely wouldn’t go SxS if it will be her only shotgun for the foreseeable future.
     
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  23. entropy

    entropy Member

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    The 1100 Competition is even easier on the shoulder, and has a lot of features for the $$. I will be taking mine pheasant hunting in a couple weeks when my younger son is home visiting.

    If your going that route, I've been finding used L.C. Smith Field Grades lately for $5-600. I found two at the closest Cabela's, one at $500, the other in much better shape, for $750. Found one at a flea market tagged $550, bet I could have got it for under $500.
     
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  24. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart member

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    Before I make a decision, I would also visit some other forums where there are some very contrasting views. And then if possible talk to some owners. I did, and made the Leap to the Stoeger and could not be happier. I was not about to put out a lot of cash for a gun that is used in a swamp and hard terrain. Once again, it is NOT a trap gun, nor a gun that I would shoot 10,000 rds a month. But the quality for cost is very good. Nice wood stock, good metal and tight fit. I have had a good time shooting this gun which by the way, is only 20". Very easy to maneuver, very easy to carry. No it does not have a full ventilated rib, but is set up nice for a scope. Has a nice fiber optic sight. Blueing is very good for the price paid. It accepts Beretta/Benilli chokes which is real hard to find for a budget gun at 20".
    The bottom line, the gun shoots excellent, especially for Buckshot which I have been shooting a lot. And again NO failures of any kind, now with over 600 shells through the gun.
    I read a lot about this shotgun before purchase, saw a number of folks that put down some budget shotguns. I cannot speak of other Brands, but I have the experience with this fiream I almost did not take that leap, but after talking to club members, shooting the gun etc, a whole lot changed. Worth every penny I put into and more.
    Lol, maybe you need a Silver Pigeon to take into a swamp, but I have yet in 40 yrs see someone do this. I choose the right tool for the right job.

    Again, I will use another tool for other task. I use to shoot trap many years ago, so do not own a good trap gun. I do have a nice Beretta and a Benilli for other hunting that I do. In fact, one gun, I think I paid TOO much for what I use it for. And just to get the juices flowing for some to bash. Last year bought a single Barrel 12ga for $150.00 and love it. Yep, like it so much bought another, but this one has a fiber optic sight, came with a Turker choke, drilled for a scope mount and came with a Mount. Solid Build. Accepts other Chokes.

    I would ask how much your wife shoots, before I would advise for any gun. And this will drive some folks on this forum utterly MAD. A mossberg Youth Mdl 88.. Lol, oh how dare me. I can feel the flames coming now.
     
  25. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Member

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    No flame here. I saw a forlorn Stoeger Condor 20 ga O/U on the used gun rack a couple of years ago at a ridiculously low price. I took it home, cleaned it up, and ran some shells through it.

    Lo and behold, the thing actually shoots where I point it. Sure, it would probably not hold up to regular trap/skeet shooting, but for normal trips shooting upland birds it is just the ticket. I also don't fear getting it banged up in the field.
     
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