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What Guage Shotgun?

  • 12ga.

    Votes: 18 69.2%
  • 20ga.

    Votes: 8 30.8%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What guage shotgun does everyone use for deer hunting and why.

Also is there a real benieft to using a riffled barrel and sabots over a smooth bore and riffled slugs?



thanks for you opinions
 

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I'll be bach
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12 ga. for me. 870 smooth barrel 26 inch modified. shoots slugs like a rifle.
I like the way they drop when that ounce of lead hits home. I hit one with a 20 ga. last year and it didn't reach out and knock him down like the 12 would.
 

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worninator has it dead on. If shot properly, a 12ga. will put a deer down every time. A 20ga while great for birds and rabbits, just doesn't have the power of a 12ga. Due to the extra power the deer can be further away and still be droped.
 

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i have used a 20ga all my life . as for knock down power almost all my deer have dropped as soon as they are hit . i think a well placed shot with most any shotgun will drop a deer on the spot . my grandpa always said shot them in the neck if you don't want to chase them and that is what i do . i used to use a old 870 wingmaster with lead slugs but anything after 75 yards was iffy really seem to lose the pattern . a few years ago i got a 1100 w/ a riffled barrel and copper sabots . the gun is great i have the same pattern at 100 yards as i do at 50 yards . the scope i have on it is a burris speeddot witch is more like a sight than a scope .
 

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Buckeye-Basser
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As far as knock down power it just depends on how good a shot you are. I use a 12 gauge 870 express magnum with fully riffled barrel. The farthest shot I've taken was at 85 yards and the doe dropped instantly.
 

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To each his own but logic goes with the 12ga not taking away from those who use a 20ga just stating a fact...
Each will do the job under conditions suitable for the caliber and under conditions tempered by shooting the caliber at ranges that they are capable of attaining...
My rifled slug bolt action will shoot out to 150 yards from a bench with a sight vice but I'm only able to shoot 125 yards with a stable rest while hunting...
My farthest shot has been 183 steps harvesting a doe that was running with a double lung shot. I'd like to say that was a great shot but will admit it was stupid and lucky... I was young and careless back then and have much more respect for the game I hunt now to ever take that kind of shot again...
If you don't like the kick of a 12ga, even with ported barrels, go with a 20ga and know its limits in the field and the ranges you can shoot with confidence and accuracy...
GOOD LUCK & BE SAFE
 

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12 ga. for me. 870 smooth barrel 26 inch modified. shoots slugs like a rifle.
I like the way they drop when that ounce of lead hits home. I hit one with a 20 ga. last year and it didn't reach out and knock him down like the 12 would.
I know this is old but if you ever buy another deer gun the 870 in 20ga.youth model with federal sabot rifled barrel knocks them on there ass every time even with a lung shot my family son, daughter, wife and me have killed a ton of deer with that little scoped gun, pretty funny the gun is almost a legend around anyone who has hunted around us. PS that federal round in 12ga is no good too fast blows right threw when the 20ga hardly leaves the deer why they drop were they stand favorite gun nice and small easy to handle always buy youth model guns most of the time they are cheaper same gun and action just a cheap stock
 

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What guage shotgun does everyone use for deer hunting and why.

Also is there a real benieft to using a riffled barrel and sabots over a smooth bore and riffled slugs?



thanks for you opinions
20ga everytime...
I really can't understand these previous posts about 20 gauge not being powerful… 20 is absolutely every bit as powerful… just like a 450 bushmaster or 350 legend...They all have more knock down and killing power than is ever needed.... patience and accuracy in a well-placed shot will do it every time.... i've seen deer drop in shorter distances with a well-placed arrow over a 12 ga slug.
 

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The most important factor is shot placement. What ever you use, sight the weapon in and determine you're most accurate range limit. I took a buck early in the morning years ago, and after field dressing it waited for my buddy to get his. I sat about 25 yards behind him and watched him shoot 6 rounds from a rifled 12 gauge with sabots. The doe stood there perfectly still. Not one hit. Found out that he'd never shot the weapon before that.
 

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Me fail english? That's unpossible.
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The 12g gets my vote not because it’s more powerful than the 20g or anything else, rather the fact it’s just more popular. In my area you will at least find 12g ammo even if there’s no 20g or .22lr. Just my 2 cents.
 

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Always used a 12ga, first was a cut down Sears pump I got years ago just for deer,(old reliable) then a rem 1100 12ga both shot great and hit what was aimed at..... 1100 lt 20ga was for my older age that never hit the woods , now the ruger 44 mag carbine , might try the new 350 legend, still on my bucket list is a deer with the 480 ruger (the gun has taken 3, but not by me )did a trade for it years ago for a s&w 4506..... kinda miss that gun but oh well
Still prefer the xbow for the deer .....no bruising of the meat , just clean cutting
 

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I was raised on a 20 ga for rabbits phsnt hunting o/u browning citori I use a 870 wing master upgraded with hastings barrell burris scope I bought it new on sale at Kmart it was advertised as Rems brush gun ?? 279.00$ came with smooth bore and rifled sites it was lethal to 60 yrd with rems foster rfld slugs (1.29 on sale) after that it got sketchy after upgrading to rfld barell and now 6.50 for 5 BRIs 100 yd shots 3in grps aI beleive the 20 ga is more than sufficient to kill a deer Ive had success using a rifled choke tube and foster slugs also
 

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I go with 12g just because it’s most common. I’ve killed deer with 410, 20 & 12g. When checked they turned out to be equally dead. For years I tried to come up with perfect deer gun for Ohio. I built dozens of slug guns. Experimented with barrel length and diameters. Cast slugs and balls. Before rifled barrels were legal fooled with shooting single projectiles through smooth bore barrels. After all that when it comes to deer in Ohio with slugs the best for most is smooth bore slug gun with standard slugs. I’ve shot deer over 125yds with 12g Brenneke slugs out of a sawed off Browning A5. I don’t mean just one either, although most were under 100yds.
Rifled barrels and sabots will out shoot smooth bores, but so what? A good smooth bore will do 3” at 100yds. Almost any ( except full chokes ) will do 6” at 100yds. More than enough accuracy for most Ohio deer hunting. If you are going to snipe deer in right aways and fields you are better off with a rifle.
I did find that best slug gun out off the box was the Ithaca Deer Slayer. Everything else smooth bore was a step behind it. Second I found that cutting down vintage models with reamed bores and solid frames shot best. The newer generation guns have extruded tubing for barrels. If you have sawed off as many guns as I have you would be surprised. The old guns have pretty uniform axis for center of bore. These new guns don’t. If you sawed them off in 6” sections, marking top dead center of 30” barrel , you would see what I’m talking about. This doesn’t affect general accuracy, just puts point of impact beyond adjustment of sights in some cases.
 

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Many years back, 47yrs ago to be exact, my wife shot her first 7 deer with a Savage 410 pump. Gun was a deluxe with rib. I had cut it off and put sights on it. Then one of my buddies kept bad mouthing her 410 and brought her a 1100Lt 20g with slug barrel. She killed her deer with it , so I bought her one.
She then killed 5 more before she quit deer hunting. She didn’t want to sit in cold all day anymore. Her deer were all shot from same stand at same range, about 30yds. They all were down within 50yds of being hit. We still have the 1100Lt 20g but I wish I still had the Savage 410 pump.
 

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There are many fast and accurate 12 ga. and 20 ga loads. I've seen sabots from both calibers shoot unbelievable accuracy at 100 yds. You can push a 1 3/8th slug to beyond 1300 ft in a 12 ga. and a 7/8 oz at 1200+ but after 100 they both suffer in Ft lbs of energy. We used to shoot 1 oz rnd balls out of a 30 full choke and break clay targets at 100 yds with a bead (on the ground). I went strictly muzzle loader for both speed and accuracy. Don't short change the 20, it's taken many.
 
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