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Can you fire less than 3" shells out of a 3" shotgun?

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by dubious, Dec 29, 2007.

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  1. dubious

    dubious Member

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    I have just acquired a Savage 24 combo gun in 20guage and 22lr. It's supposed to be for 3" shells. It's got a modified choke. Does that mean I have to use JUST 3" shells, or is that the max? Is it the same with shot, buckshot, and slugs?
     
  2. tsidorus

    tsidorus Member

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    yes you can shoot the shorter shells. I unfortunately dont have any documentation to support this... but trust me. Its like 38 special in a 357, 44 special in a 44 mag, now 32 h&r in a 327 hey even 22short or long in 22 long rifle. You get the idea. Just dont try that new fangled 3.5 inch 20ga.

    -Tsi

    (Im sure you could call savage and they would tell you it alright 413-568-7001)
     
  3. 12Bravo20

    12Bravo20 Member

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    Yes it is perfectly safe to shoot a 2 3/4" shell in a shotgun with a 3" chamber.
     
  4. 12Bravo20

    12Bravo20 Member

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    oops double post
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2007
  5. deanl

    deanl Member

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    Yes you can, I do it all the time with a 870 winmaster 3inch mag. I shoot 2 3/4 shells out of it a lot. Agila makes a 12 ga shell that just under 1 1/2 inch crimped. They were made for a full auto gun I think. You can shoot them out of any 12 ga unmodified but only one at a time. They have modifications (ejector and/or extractor) so you can shoot it normally out of your respective 12 ga pump etc. fits more shells in your gun. I shot some and they seem to be powerfull enough.

    Best advice is try shooting a 2 3/4 shells out of your 3 or 3 1/2in mag and make sure it feeds and ejects without jamming. It works with out fail for me and my trusty 870.
     
  6. Zoogster

    Zoogster Member

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    Sure you can. Many people fire 2 3/4 shells out of 12 gauges exclussively even though they have 3 or even 3.5 inch guns.

    That larger chamber though will change how the gas expands. The pressure will need to fill in that extra wasted space.
    On a 3.5 inch gun for example a 2 3/4 inch shell would fire and the shot and gases would have to expand width wise to fill in the chamber area before the full force of the gas would be focused forward. This can mean more deformed shot, and I would imagine slighter lower pressures and reduced velocity for the same load than out of a 2 3/4 chamber. It might even cause faster spread on the pattern, which of course a choke would counter.

    All of it would be hardly noticable, but it would be happening. That dead space of extra width forward of the round will have SOME impact.

    Much smaller might not always feed reliably, like Aguila's 1.75 inch mini shells.

    The number of rounds a shotgun can hold can also be changed by the size shell being used. The longer the magazine the bigger the impact. Obviously many more rounds of 1.75 inch mini shells can be loaded than 3.5 inch shells out of the same length magazine.
    If you have a capacity limit (state or hunting laws) using smaller shells might get you into trouble if not fixed previously with a block because you can exceed the number of rounds allowed if capacity with larger shells just barely complies.
     
  7. Pete409

    Pete409 Member

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    Dubious,

    Yes, you can safely fire shorter shells (of the same gauge) out of the 3" chamber. Since your gun is a break-action that requires single loading of shells directly into the chamber, there is no "magazine" to be concerned about.

    Yes, it's the same whether using shot, buckshot, or slugs.
     
  8. CajunBass

    CajunBass Member

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    Probably the one gun I really wish I had back was a 24 in 20/22. The best "pot hunting" gun ever made IMHO.
     
  9. Milkmaster

    Milkmaster Member

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    Congrats on your new shotgun. My dad has the 22lr/410ga. I have the 20ga/22WMR version shown in the picture here. Great classic shotguns.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2008
  10. kirbythegunsmith

    kirbythegunsmith Member

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    Details

    I had posted much about the problem of longer chambers and shorter shells, and most of that info. was listed here:

    ---------------------------------
    In case you didn't search long and hard, see this back-n-forth where I explained the saga of long chambers vs. shorter shells.

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=246219

    Then you will have some greater perspective about logic (or lack thereof) and can make more informed decisions.
    -------------------------------------
    There was more info. at this posting, including a reference to Browning's testing details of the 2-3/4" in the 3" chamber.

    http://www.browning.com/faq/detail.asp?ID=102

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=320928

    kirbythegunsmith@hotmail.com
     
  11. Average Joe

    Average Joe Member

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    Yes, perfectly safe.
     
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