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Old October 12, 2019, 18:40   #1
ratas calientes
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Youth shooting trap - update

Okay folks, I require a little advice. I took a young man shooting so he could finish his shotgun shooting merit badge. His dad also came along to run the clay pigeon thrower. I am not a shotgun guy, and neither is his dad, and the only shotty I have is a Hawk 982 12-gauge (Chinese Remington 870 clone) with rifle sights and 18.5" barrel. We went through an entire box of clays, and he did not get one hit. Like I said, not knowing what I was doing besides supplying the shotgun and launcher, I didn't have much advice to offer.

Question . . . was the type of shotgun he used a handicap? Did we need a "proper" trap gun? Longer barrel . . . etc.?

Thanks -
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Old October 12, 2019, 18:50   #2
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The 870 is fine, the barrel described, not so much. I obviously have no knowledge of the skill level of the boy or the coaches on wing shooting, but a pro would suffer quite a bit with that barrel.

Send me your address again Glenn and I will send you a better barrel to try.
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Old October 12, 2019, 20:38   #3
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Originally Posted by Invictus77 View Post
The 870 is fine, the barrel described, not so much. I obviously have no knowledge of the skill level of the boy or the coaches on wing shooting, but a pro would suffer quite a bit with that barrel.

Send me your address again Glenn and I will send you a better barrel to try.
That is a very kind offer. The young man in question is a smaller-built 14-year old. Completely new to shooting, except for attempting the Shotgun Merit Badge at camp this past summer. And as I mentioned, I have little to no experience shooting a shotgun at anything that is moving. He already has all of his merit badges for his Eagle rank, so the shotgun badge is not necessary. However, let me ask him and let him decide if he wants to try again, this time with a longer barrel on the shotgun. I'll let you know.

I also checked, and a Remington barrel will fit the Hawk, but I will need to fabricate a spacer. Worth the effort if needed.
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Old October 12, 2019, 21:41   #4
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Just tossing it out there.

But with a bbl of 18.5” there’s a good chance it’s cylinder bore. Making it darn hard to hit anything, unless you get it close and quick.

YMMV
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Old October 13, 2019, 08:32   #5
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Just tossing it out there.

But with a bbl of 18.5” there’s a good chance it’s cylinder bore. Making it darn hard to hit anything, unless you get it close and quick.

YMMV
What he said...
A buddy does an annual hog roast and informal clays shoot.
I clean up using a 97 riot gun and hitting them right out of the electric trap.
If the shot is anything but instinct and more then about a second from launch, hes too slow and probably needs some choke.
99.99% dont lead near enough and shoot behind the clays.
If you have somewhere he can try over open water and see where his shot is going, it will do wonders to teach him proper lead needed.

Last edited by yovinny; October 13, 2019 at 08:41.
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Old October 13, 2019, 09:20   #6
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Basically that barrel is a scatter gun. I have no knowledge of shotgun powder burn rates but chances are the pattern is too wide and may be dropping low. An improved cylinder is fine shooting skeet. Set up a paper target at 30 yds or so and see what's up. Would ever attempt to shoot birds with a short barrel like that. 28"
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Old October 13, 2019, 10:08   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ratas calientes View Post
I also checked, and a Remington barrel will fit the Hawk, but I will need to fabricate a spacer. Worth the effort if needed.
What spacer is needed?

My Google-fu says it is an 870 clone and to the best of my knowledge all 870 barrels are interchangeable

I have a box it fits in and you can try it out if you want. It is a vent ribbed, changeable choke (modified choke in it now), in a 26" or 28" barrel. Much better barrel for your stated purpose.
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Old October 13, 2019, 10:27   #8
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What spacer is needed?

My Google-fu says it is an 870 clone and to the best of my knowledge all 870 barrels are interchangeable

I have a box it fits in and you can try it out if you want. It is a vent ribbed, changeable choke (modified choke in it now), in a 26" or 28" barrel. Much better barrel for your stated purpose.
And this ^^^^^ ladies and gentlemen, is why I still have faith in the Files after all of these years. Our board has changed over time but good folks are still around here.
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Old October 13, 2019, 10:54   #9
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The longer barrel and the right ammo, will help. Also, Practice, Practice, Practice. Here are some tips that may help.

https://www.outdoorlife.com/articles...porting-clays/
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Old October 13, 2019, 15:41   #10
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And this ^^^^^ ladies and gentlemen, is why I still have faith in the Files after all of these years. Our board has changed over time but good folks are still around here.
Mike is DEFINITELY one of the Good Ones.
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Old October 13, 2019, 16:19   #11
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Glenn -

I'm a decently good pigeon shooter, and I coach kids shooting regularly. I've got a couple of things that might be of help:

1. You already know that rifle shooting is about 'quiet' body and 'steady' trigger. Shotgun shooting is about being 'athletic' - so the kid needs to think about being 'fluid'. If he's getting 'beat' by the recoil because he's small to the point of flinching or being afraid, it's not worth the pain (his or yours...).

2. Most rifle shooters change their head positions between irons and optics. This is because of the mounting height of the optic. Irons head position will work for shooting shotgun - but we almost ALWAYS want to 'see' the pigeon because it's moving - which causes us to raise our heads (into the wrong position...) and look.

Shotgun patterns, barrels, and chokes aside, this ^ is the cause of his misses. I've shot plenty of pigeons with an 870 and with a Benelli M4 Tactical. We miss when our head is up off of the front bead to see the pigeon, and it usually means we're high and slightly behind the pigeon (high and right if the pigeon is moving right to left...).

3. Shooter needs to work on shouldering the shotgun in such a way that the front bead is *just* standing off of the rib - with NONE of the rib visible. As an aside, if he's looking down the rib, he's dropping the gun so he can see over the gun and watch the pigeon. Then he's bringing the bead up and therefore shooting high...


So the fix is:

a. shoulder gun with bead / front sight just visible

b. track front sight to the front of the bird (time/distance/speed variable) and pull trigger AS he gets to front of bird - not AFTER he gets to front of bird. Trying to break the shot "after" will cause him to stop tracking / leading because he (we) do tasks in series: gun up, track bird, pull trigger, etc. This means we almost *always* stop the prior task before we perform the next one.

c. follow-through in rifle shooting is a non-physical thing: it is 'focus' on sight picture to the point of remembering sight picture when the trigger breaks. Shotgun shooting follow-through is the same thing (know the picture when the shot breaks), PLUS keeping the gun on the front of the bird (target is moving).

I shoot a Browning 525 over/under w 26" barrel. If the bird is flying directly across me, I'm guessing I'm hitting the trigger as I get ~9" t in front of the bird - but that is swing-speed dependent, so the kid's going to have to learn what works. If the bird is quartering away, I'm on the front of the bird.


My guess is that your young shooter has two or three things going wrong at once. Head position, quitting 'tracking' or leading as he sees the sight picture he likes because series task management, and no follow-through because he's getting hammered.

Good luck - I'd love to hear how you all proceed.
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Old October 13, 2019, 17:20   #12
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.........


My guess is that your young shooter has two or three things going wrong at once. Head position, quitting 'tracking' or leading as he sees the sight picture he likes because series task management, and no follow-through because he's getting hammered.

Good luck - I'd love to hear how you all proceed.
The bold ^ is the major cause of misses on live birds or clays by all range of ages and experience.

Highly experienced rifle shooters can have the most difficult time transitioning to this.

Learning to continue the swing while pressing the trigger is paramount. A longer barreled ( translation= heavier on the front end ) shotgun may ameliorate it.

I began shooting .30-06 rifles and 12 gauge shotguns when I was 14, and weighed a huge 85#.

Burying the butt in the shoulder pocket, cheeking hard, and rolling with the recoil as Dad taught me, kept me shooting.

$.02


.......................
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Old October 13, 2019, 17:39   #13
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T 12 gauge shotguns when I was 14, and weighed a huge 85#.

Burying the butt in the shoulder pocket, cheeking hard, and rolling with the recoil as Dad taught me, kept me shooting.

$.02


.......................
I could shoot my father's A5 better then than I can now. Last time I took it out was 10 years ago to 100 shot clays thing. I was flinching after 70. Black and blue the next day. Put a new spring and bronze thingy in it. I could hear the bolt whacking the receiver. I'd like to shoot some clays just for fun if it was only me on the range to learn how to shoot birds again.
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Old October 13, 2019, 17:58   #14
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Highly experienced rifle shooters can have the most difficult time transitioning to this.
YES

Rifle shooting is about "seeing" the sights/scope and being exactly on the target you are intending to hit. Breath. Calm. Bang.

Clays are about the barrel being being somewhere in your peripheral vision "toward" the target your eyes are watching and following through to where it "will" be when the shot meets up with it.

(rifle and pistol shooting can be that way too, but I am simplifying it for this topic. Front sight. Front sight. Front sight.)

It is a hard transition which I am struggling with myself shooting sporting clays the last few months

Sadly, people that see me shoot at a flying clays think I missed it with a rifle.

People that see my groupings on a rifle target think I shot it with a load of buckshot.

As the old Indian guy said in the movie "Outlaw Josie Wales", Endeavor to Persevere

(...and practice, practice, practice.)
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Old October 13, 2019, 18:21   #15
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I could shoot my father's A5 better then than I can now. Last time I took it out was 10 years ago to 100 shot clays thing. I was flinching after 70. Black and blue the next day. Put a new spring and bronze thingy in it. I could hear the bolt whacking the receiver. I'd like to shoot some clays just for fun if it was only me on the range to learn how to shoot birds again.
'Tis the reason I load little else but 7/8 loads for all my sporting clays shooting.

Many trap pros have trouble initially shooting sporting clays. Trap is always a rising target, unless you are a very slow shooter. All kinds of presentations on SC targets is more of a challenge. I try to shoot it every week. It's an addiction.
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Old October 13, 2019, 18:29   #16
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' All kinds of presentations on SC targets is more of a challenge. I try to shoot it every week. It's an addiction.
Yep, I liked it but it's an expensive addiction. I want to do it again. Thought about buying the wife a 20 ga. My problem is I don't want to do it around other people that are strangers. Sort of like golf. Used to love it if I went with a friend and it wasn't 4 people at the same place yacking away while I'm thinking about things to get on target
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Old October 13, 2019, 18:29   #17
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It's an addiction.
Yes, but it beats the fugg out of golf
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Old October 13, 2019, 18:57   #18
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Yes, but it beats the fugg out of golf
I've actually thought about going to Austin for the USGP race. Told the wife if she'll buy the tickets I'll drive and load up the truck. I doubt I'm going. Cuz the only way I'll go is free tickets.
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Old October 13, 2019, 19:40   #19
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Yep, I liked it but it's an expensive addiction. I want to do it again. Thought about buying the wife a 20 ga. My problem is I don't want to do it around other people that are strangers. Sort of like golf. Used to love it if I went with a friend and it wasn't 4 people at the same place yacking away while I'm thinking about things to get on target
That's the problem with some that are too serious about their scores. I have shot some trap, on a trap forum too, and they all wanna see your ATA card/score. Seems you ain't squat if you don't have a good ATA score, fuggem. I shoot for shits and giggles. Too old to give a shit whether I win a trophy for being better than the next guy. My membership at the local SC course is $75/month, and gives me unlimited shooting (free) for me and my family. Hard to turn down. Hell, we blow that just going out to eat and the wife unit likes to do that waaaaaay more than I shoot, yet she thinks my shooting budget is high. Exscept for the lead shot I still need t buy occasionally, I'm shooting on 2012 budget supplies (powder/primers,etc) when I went out and loaded up after our favorite porch monkey potus put the scare on the shooting industry after Sandy Hook.
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Old October 14, 2019, 14:17   #20
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Originally Posted by Invictus77 View Post
What spacer is needed?

My Google-fu says it is an 870 clone and to the best of my knowledge all 870 barrels are interchangeable

I have a box it fits in and you can try it out if you want. It is a vent ribbed, changeable choke (modified choke in it now), in a 26" or 28" barrel. Much better barrel for your stated purpose.
This is an example of what I have read. Does not sound too hard to do.
https://forums.gunboards.com/showthr...e&daysprune=-1
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Old October 22, 2019, 17:41   #21
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I have over a dozen iron site rimfire rifles purchased just for qualifying Boy Scouts for their Marksmanship badge. Had to build a "chipmunk" size for the smaller kids as the Chipmunk I purchased of LGS shelf was so inaccurate it was hurting their confidence more than teaching marksmanship. Found an inexpensive bolt rifle that shot well, cut down stock and had my smith cut barrel to 16" and crown. During Sandy Hook was able to keep five local troops shooting twice a year when most couldn't even by rimfire.

Am not a scattergun shooter except in the tactical sense but do have an over and under 20 gauge youth model with improved over modified along with a full size 20 gauge over and under that's modified over full. For the larger kids let them use my Browning's. Have half a dozen various lengths and chokes in 12 gauge and one in 20 gauge which is full choke. Most Boy Scouts I see now have either never shot or been taught bad habits by fathers. Ask around LGS and bet you can find a true scatter gun shooter that will help. Regular guy at LGS recently picked up a $10,000 custom over and under then invited us all out to shoot it the next weekend after church. A good mentor may be best option as likely to have proper gun to loan for the task as well.
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