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Fully Rifled VS Cylinder bore ( Slug guns )

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by whetrock, Apr 25, 2012.

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  1. whetrock

    whetrock Member

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    I've got a bit of a dillemma here, I'm wanting to purchase a designated slug barrel for my Mossberg 835 and can't decide if I'd be better served by a smooth Cylinder bore barrel or a fully rifled barrel. I want the ability to shoot consistently at 50-75 yards and am not for certain if I'd realy benefit from a fully rifled barrel shooting sabot slugs but rather foster style slugs through a smooth cylinder bore. I've never had the opprotunity to shoot a real deal "slug gun" and have just played around with slugs through run of the mill shotguns.
     
  2. theCan

    theCan member

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    Shotgun slugs are messy things they're huge with terrible ballistic coefficient. Even top quality slugs such as in the link below have bleed off 800 ftlbs of energy and 400 feet/s of velocity by the time they reach 100 yards.

    For this reason they're not very accurate. You'll gain some benefit from a rifled barrel but not much. The better question here is, "What style of slug is most accurate in a rifled barrel?" Is it a brenneke? A foster? A sabot? There answer to that may not exist. Or it maybe that it depends on the gun.

    As far as I'm concerned, its more important that you know the point of impact at various ranges than if you have a rifled barrel or not, particularly if you're not mounting a scope.

    If you really want to squeeze the most out of your shotgun, hubel458 over at firearmstalk.com might be the man to ask. The man has been designing his own loads since at least 1999, probably long before that. Here's a picture of one of his loads:

    1212.jpg

    And a link to his website: http://www.gunownerstv.com

    Tipped slugs with velocity data: http://www.cheaperthandirt.com/15474-5.html


    Long story short, I'd spend my money on a smooth bore. Smooth bores are harder to wear out. No rifling to worry about. But then again I've never understood the purpose of a designated slug gun. If I need rifling, I'll grab my rifle.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2012
  3. Hunterdad

    Hunterdad Member

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    If you're only shooting 50-75yds, just go with the smoothbore. Pick up some Brenneke slugs and get comfortable with it.
     
  4. snooperman

    snooperman Member

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    Yes, stay with smooth bore out to 75 yards..

    and it should work out for you. It does for me. Getting the proper slug for your gun is far more important at those distances than is a rifled barrel.
     
  5. Jason_W

    Jason_W Member

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    If ranges will be 75 yards or less, I would also go with a smooth bore. I've heard mixed opinions on rifled choke tubes, but I have not tried one myself yet. A smooth bore gun will also give you the option of swapping out the slugs for buck or birdshot should that be necessary.

    The important thing is to put a good sight or scope on the gun as hitting anything with a slug at 50 yards using only a standard bead is difficult to say the least.

    For slugs themselves, I would start with those of European manufacture such as Brenneke. Big game hunting with smooth bore slug guns is apparently a lot more common in many European countries than in the US and the markets have responded accordingly. In Greece, for instance, smooth bore guns are the only type allowed for any kind of kind of hunting.

    Smooth bore slug guns get an undeservedly bad rep. No, they're never going to print groups as small as a .30 cal rifle (even if both shoot cloverleaf groups) but not all hunting situations require laser-like accuracy at 200 yards.
     
  6. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    I agree. A smooth bore is much more versatile. A rifled barrel is pretty useless with buckshot or birdshot if you want to use it. I own a 20" rifle sighted IC choked barrel for my 870. The IC barrel gives me good enough patterns with buckshot for 30+ yard shots and still keeps slugs in 4" or so groups at 100 yards.

    I don't hunt with slugs since rifles are legal anywhere I hunt, but if I did and if I anticipated shots longer than 100 yards I'd go with a rifled barrel and sabot slugs. But not for closer ranges.
     
  7. 303tom

    303tom member

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  8. au_prospector

    au_prospector Member

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    I have an old Western Field model 550 pump 20 gauge. It is a clone of a Mossberg 500. Lucky for me, it accepts Mossberg barrels. I have a Mossberg Slugster barrel which is smooth bore and chambered for 2 3/4 and 3 inch shells. This barrel is 24 inches. The rear sight is adjustable for elevation and windage adjustable by gently tapping it left or right. I could not be happier with the accuracy. With little effort I can get 4-5 inch groups at 50 yards. Carefully placed shots group about 5 inches at 75 yards easily. I could probably hit a dinner plate at 100 yards if I aim high.

    I shoot Remington Slugger and Winchester rifled slugs. The Rems are a bit lighter, they also seem to be more accurate for me. My only complaint is the lead fouling which starts to effect accuracy after about 6 rounds. Also get plastic fouling from the wad column melting to the inside of the barrel. They are a kick to shoot though quite literally.
     

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  9. whetrock

    whetrock Member

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    My main purpose for this shotgun would be for fall deer hunting ( Oklahoma allows shotguns in muzzleloading season) and I'm just looking for a shotgun barrel that can help me better hurl a shotgun slug to about 50 yards or so also I'm thinking of picking up a press and loading my own shotshells and have always had a fascination with slugs and think it would be cool to push the boundaries of them and see what they can do.
     
  10. Jason_W

    Jason_W Member

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    If you get into loading your own slugs, let me know. I've been doing that for about 5 years now and I can help you get started.
     
  11. mbopp

    mbopp Member

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    Many years ago before there were rifled shotgun barrels I made a dedicated Foster slug barrel for my Ithaca M-37. I took a 28" VR field barrel and cut 2" off the end, eliminating the choke. I had a set of home-made sights for the rib but got the receiver D&T'd a few years back.
    With a 1" tube red dot it'll hold 5" at 75 yards with Federal Foster slugs, and that's all I ask of it.

    The gun originally had a 20" smoothbore slug barrel. It wouldn't shoot worth a damn, and that began my quest for another barrel. The slug barrel mik'd at .715" while the bird barrel is .730."
    Back in the mid-70's there was a Gun Digest article on a "200 Yard Slug Gun." IIRR the author was handloading Brenneke-style slugs.
     
  12. theCan

    theCan member

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    :confused: A smooth bore is not legally considered a rifle even with a slug in the tube. As a matter of fact, for some odd reason, even if you use a rifled barrel, a shotgun is still a shotgun.

    Shotgun+slugs are the go to for a lot of people who hunt in areas where rifles are prohibited from the game of man vs wild.
     
  13. whetrock

    whetrock Member

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    Thanks, I'd appreciate any help I can get. I've been loading metallic cartridges for a couple of years now but I'm a total newb when it comes to loading shotshells.
     
  14. Jason_W

    Jason_W Member

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    Slugs are even easier to load than metallic cartridges. Just stick with the recipes to the letter. Apparently, substituting so much as one brand of hull or primer with another can result in dangerous pressure spikes.

    If you really want to save money and make some cheap blasting ammo, you'll probably also want to start casting your own slugs.
     
  15. roadchoad

    roadchoad Member

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    Some of us live in states where we don't have that option for certain game, Ohio being one of them for deer.
     
  16. sjcslk

    sjcslk Member

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    slugs

    quote = "My only complaint is the lead fouling which starts to effect accuracy after about 6 rounds. Also get plastic fouling from the wad column melting to the inside of the barrel."

    Do all slugs foul like this or was it just the Remington Sluggers ?
     
  17. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    The point of your post makes no sense.

    Rifles are not prohibited anywhere I hunt, so that is what I use. As a result I have no need for a rifled slug barrel. If I hunted areas where rifles were prohibited then I would buy a rifled barrel for my shotgun.
     
  18. RPRNY

    RPRNY Member

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    As per the consensus above, for 50 - 75 yards, I would stick with smoothbore and get a feel for Brenekke slugs. I have a 20 ga VR 28" Topper Deluxe barrel for an H&R single shot that was a bit of a red haired stepchild. I ordered it in 20 ga and it arrived (go Freedom Group - NOT) a 12 ga blank with a 20 ga bore! Carries like a 10, hits like a 20. Wondered what to do with it. Turns out it's a great slug barrel. I was getting groups inside a 12" box at 100 yards with Winchester Fosters. Rio 20 Brenekkes, I am getting groups inside a 3" box at 50 yards - good enough for deer.
     
  19. Bushpilot

    Bushpilot Member

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    I'll be in the minority here and say that I would get the rifled slug barrel without a second thought. I'll go a step further and say that I would get the rifled slug barrel with the built in scope mount. I have a Mossberg 500 and an Ithaca 37 Deerslayer. For the Mossberg I have both the smooth bore slug barrel with open sights and the rifled slug barrel with the scope mount. There is NO comparison. Although I'm sure I can hit a deer with the smooth bore 500 barrel out at 50-75 yrds or so, shot placement is "iffy" at best and the groups are usually large and inconsistent. The Ithaca 37 Deerslayer was for years known as one of, if not “the” best, smooth bore slug guns out there and shoots better than the smooth bore Mossberg but nothing like the rifled Mossberg barrel. The rifled Mossberg barrel shoots so well that I don't feel the least bit "handicapped" by using a shotgun instead of a rifle except for range. In fact, when Indiana started allowing pistol caliber rifles for deer a few years back I went out last minute and bought a Marlin 1894 44 mag but that first year I still used the Mossberg with the rifled slug barrel because it readily outshot the 44 rifle with iron sights and the factory loads I had !
     
  20. Bushpilot

    Bushpilot Member

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    By the way, this was the deer I shot that year....:)
     

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