Sporting Clay Shotgun Recommendation

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by RedDawnTheMusical, Oct 31, 2010.

  1. RedDawnTheMusical

    RedDawnTheMusical Well-Known Member

    I recently went shooting sporting clays, which is a fairly new activity for me, and I borrowed my neighbor's Benelli semi-auto. I really liked the Benelli and I don't presently have a shotgun, so I was looking for recommendations for a good shotgun for shooting sporting clays, since I plan on doing a lot more of it. I've seen that there are shotguns that are specialized for sporting clays (e.g. ported barrels, more stock shock reduction, etc.) and was curious if the extra $ was worth it.
  2. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

    I think an over/under shotgun with screw-in choke tubes is the best type of shotgun for all the clay-shooting games.
    Sporting clays, trap, skeet, etc.
    You can have one barrel choked a little more open for close range shots and the other barrel with a tighter choke for longer shots.
    A selector button or swtich on the gun's receiver will let you choose which barrel to shoot first.

    That being said, I think the skill of the shooter matters the most. An excellent wing shot with a pump or semi-auto shotgun with a modified choke will get nearly all of the birds presented.

    P.S. Does shooting 100 rounds of low-brass birdshot hurt your shoulder? Do you flinch when you fire a 12 gauge? Then consider shotguns designed to absorb recoil, like one of those semi-auto shotguns with a shock absorber or spring action in the stock. If the recoil of breaking 100 clays in an hour doesn't bother you, why worry about it? Get whatever shotgun feels good and looks good and has the right choke options for the distances your game will require you to shoot form.

  3. fmlaw1

    fmlaw1 Active Member

    gunsmoker makes good points. I would add, shotgunners are most finiky about barrel length. From there you can get it fitted to you 100%, if you feel the need. Porting is hype to me, but some folks seem to like it.

    Find one o/u you like, in the dimensions you like, make sure it fits, then practice a good cheek weld. Buy used, if possible. You are likely to wnat to upgrade, if you shoot SC lots. Also, save money for a golf cart - they seem to be popular on the course as well!
  4. mountainpass

    mountainpass Under Scrutiny

    Pay close attention to weight, less of course is better, but where the weight is located is also important.
  5. RedDawnTheMusical

    RedDawnTheMusical Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the feedback guys. I plan on visiting some of the local gun stores and try to get a good feel for one that will fit me well and has a comfortable weight, barrel length, etc.
  6. spotco2

    spotco2 New Member

    I've got a couple of guns that we use to shoot clays with and my favorite by far is my Beretta 687 Silver Pigeon II OU in 12 gauge with Briley skeet chokes. Next favorite would be the same gun in 28 gauge.

    I also have a Franchi 48AL that works pretty well for clays.

    The longer the barell the easier you will be able to put it on target but make sure the rest of the gun is heavy enough to keep it balanced.

    Shop around a bit before you make your final decision. Try out as many shotguns as you can also. Some ranges will have guns to rent and most shooters will not mind letting you try theirs out for a few birds as long as you ask politely.
  7. JohnGalt88

    JohnGalt88 New Member

    You can't go wrong with any of the Beretta semi-autos . If you are shooting sporting clays you are going through serious amounts of shells you need a gun that will protect your shoulder. A Benelli is a good gun but their inertia system is rough on the shoulder and after 50-60 rounds while you may think you are OK it can add up and your cheek weld may suffer and you may begin to flich. Also its not very fun going home with a sore shoulder after a shoot. Its why i don't shoot my Benelli at doves and clays. The Beretta 390/391s are the softest shooting best handling semi auto i have ever picked up and would be a great choice. They are also the number one choice for a semi auto trap and skeet guns.
  8. DrGlock

    DrGlock New Member

    Beretta 391 sporting optima barrel at 30 or 32". Semi auto, easy recoil, and you can probably score one for under $1000 new if you look around. Beautiful gun, and a Beretta.

    A word about sporting clays: if your like me, I go out to shoot a course of 100 clays and at the end of the day Ive always done the course twice, some five stand, piddling, and basically a flat is gone (250 shells). In my practice, I treat a LOT of shot-gunners, and the over/ unders beat the crap out of peoples necks and shoulders! So, if your gonna shoot any volume, save yourself some grief (and a doctors bill) and go with a semi auto! :D
  9. AeroShooter

    AeroShooter Active Member

    Which Benelli?

    I have the Cordoba and absolutely love it.

    Of course, it's only good for shooting doves... in Argentina...
  10. fmlaw1

    fmlaw1 Active Member

    If in the market for new, check out CDNN. Some very good prices for new on O/U - via email.
  11. artz

    artz New Member

    I used to shoot alot of sporting clays when I lived in California.
    Got to shoot guns that I thought I would never shoot nor see due to their "exceptional" value, and guns that us working folk see in everyday life.
    I used 2 guns. Both Remington 1100's. One in 12 and the other in 20 gage.
    I actually prefer the 20 due to its lite weight which made it quicker for me to shoot, plus it had no recoil.
    The 1100's are rated high for reliability and shootability. The value was realistic for me, and a few others who shot them in the matches.
    Borrow one and get intimate with it. I don't think you'll regret it.
  12. vanguard

    vanguard New Member

    I went for the first time a month ago and it was great, I hit 43 of 100 with a mossburg pump 20ga, but I want to get an over and under 12ga for the next time. :D
  13. yrualeg

    yrualeg Member

    My youngest just chose a Stoeger Condor Supreme as his first Over and Under...12g and 26" barrel length..It's a great entry level Shotgun and shoots very easy. They are owned by Benelli


    Candler Pawn in Decatur has them....
  14. RedDawnTheMusical

    RedDawnTheMusical Well-Known Member

    I just wanted to drop a quick thank you to everyone that commented with their recommendations. I went the semi-auto route and, after shooting various friends shotguns, settled on the Benelli Cordoba. It's initeria drive mechanism is very easily to clean, uses external chokes, has a ported 30" barrel, etc. I'm going to go break it in Friday and based on my shooting of my neighbor's Benelli SBE II, it should be a lot of fun...