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Learning my Stevens 311 H Double Barrelled Shotgun...

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by SeniorXJ, Nov 10, 2010.

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  1. SeniorXJ

    SeniorXJ Member

    Nov 10, 2010
    Albany, NY
    Hello to all!! Im a newbie here so go easy on me ok!! LoL!! Ive already posted up a welcome thread in the "introduce urself" thread so u can read my story there.

    -I have a 20ga Stevens 311H double barrelled shotgun by Savage Arms that was a gift 4 me by my step dad. I'd like to get to know my shotgun inside & out. So far ive established thats its made after 1968 since it has a cereal # on it, & that they stop making them in 1989. Printed on the left barrel is word for word: "Stevens model 311 series H 20ga 2 3/4" & 3" shells Savage Arms Westfield, MASS USA".

    -First thing i wanna learn, (besides safety), is how 2 mantain its integrity & properly keep it clean!! I want to be able to take it apart & put it back together. I want 2 know its habbits & the do's & dont's of my shotgun, & ofcourse im looking to soak up as much info & tech tips on my 311H as possible!!! Ive been told using 3" shells isnt in the guns best interests, (less wear & tear i guess), even tho its stamped on the barrel. Ive also been told it doesnt like slugs cauz it tends to pull the barrels apart. Im not sure if those statements hold any water, BUT thats why im here askin u fine folks!!!!!!

    I look foward to the replies!!
  2. DPris

    DPris Member

    Nov 4, 2007
    The old Stevens doubles (not to be confused with more recent imported doubles sold under the Savage/Stevens umbrella) were usually good serviceable guns. Not fancy, they were designed to be affordable utility shotguns for the mass market.

    You know how to break it into its three components, presumably: Fore-end, barrels, action/stock.
    That's normally as far as most of us go, but if you're mechanically inclined you should be able to Google up an exploded parts diagram to see what's inside, and go from there.

    The guts shouldn't need regular cleaning, if you're not interested in stripping the action completely I'd suggest taking it to a good gunsmith & paying him to go through it, clean & lube. That should last for several years.

    Three-inch shells, even in the 20-gauge, will probably be more than you'll want to deal with, you can hunt with 2 3/4-inchers just fine if you stay inside the gun's limitations.
    You can also find reduced birdshot loads for practice & tin can popping.
    You may want to consider a good recoil pad, especially if you play with three-inch shells. :)

    I've never heard the one about slugs separating the barrels.
    Your gun may or may not be regulated to put slugs from both barrels close together beyond 25 yards, best to try some & see, if you plan to ever use any in the field.

    Clean the bores with a good quality brass/bronze brush, unless you find them thoroughly gunked up with burned powder residue, lead, and plastic shell residue.
    When mine build up to the point where it looks like it'll take a half hour to scrub the deposits out with a brush, I switch to the shotgun version of a kitchen Chore Girl (they still make those?). I use a wad of stainless steel pushed through by the blunt end of a cleaning rod, much faster.

    You can buy several different cleaning solutions from Brownells that will attack either lead or plastic buildup, I normally just use Break Free CLP, but a lot of dedicated shotgunners swear by Ed's Red.
    Brownells also has chamber & bore brushes in the right sizes for your gun, and that stainless scourer mentioned above.
    If you don't like the stainless, they have the brass mesh Lewis Lead Remover in shotgun sizes, does about the same thing, but a little more complicated.

    Good luck with your Stevens.
    I have a 12 gauge 311R, the 18-inch barreled version made for the police market back in the 80s.
    Pretty fond of it.
  3. Naybor

    Naybor Member

    Nov 5, 2010
    Was South East Oklahoma ~ Now Southern Ohio
    Congratulations on your Stevens Double Barrel! They made a good gun.

    DPris gave you a good answer. I agree you probably shouldn't use it for slugs as each barrel is probably different in where it hits and also, you don't want to use slugs in a gun if the gun has a choke tighter than say modified. Full choke DEFIANTLY not! Maybe not even modified. It squeezes the slug too much.

    I got a shotgun cleaning kit from Wally World for $8 plus change and it works fine to keep the bore clean.

    Use a good machine oil and/or Hoppes cleaner, using the brass brush and swabs. Use a oiled swab first, and then a dry one to remove excess oil. A bore snake would do good, but expensive and not really necessary. You'll do fine.

    The forearm snaps off and on, and if you do that too much, the mechanism will break. I had that happen on two of my Stevens. A replacement is VERY hard to find.

    I would say use 2 3/4 shells of any Make or pellet size other than slugs, and ENJOY

    Polish with a good car wax to keep it looking good. Fingerprints and rust will not be a problem then.
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2010
  4. MAKster

    MAKster Member

    Jul 8, 2006
    I am also looking to by a 311 but am confused about the difference in models such as the A, E, and H. How do they feel to shoot? I am basically interested in buying a 311 for the nostalgia and fun, but might pass if they are clunky to shoot.
  5. CHEVELLE427

    CHEVELLE427 Member

    Jul 18, 2008
    I HAVE A 311 410

    and it does quit well at trap not bad for 1/2oz shot
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