questions about youth shotguns

Discussion in 'MichiganWaterfowl.com' started by runs with fire, Oct 16, 2020.

  1. runs with fire

    runs with fire

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    I'm writing an article on my blog about choosing the best youth shotgun for a child between 9 and 12 years old. I've been learning alot so far. like many, I started with a single shot .410 and don't recomend it as a start for young shooters.
    I like the idea of semi-auto youth 20 gauges for most. But then there's the cost. A youth 20 gauge pump is 1/3 the cost of a decent semi-auto. I think there's nothing wrong with something like the 20 gauged youth 870. Especially with the 3-inch chamber so it's more comparable to a 12 gauge as they grow.
    My question today is more about fitting a shotgun. How do you decide to fit one, if you did at all? did you send it away? if so, where did you send the stock to? would you consider doing itself with a miter box in the garage, if you knew how much to take off?
    or, did you ever add to the length of pull to a youth gun to fit it, Mabey as they grow? How'd you do it?
    Thanks.
     
  2. Outdoor Gal

    Outdoor Gal

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    My boys (11) are both shooting 3" chambered, youth, 20 gauge single shots. The guns have had weight added to the stock to help soak up recoil and the stock and combs have been adjusted with pads as they grow to fit. They've been shooting these guns since they were 8. In the next year or two we'll need to upgrade. They also shoot bismuth instead of standard steel shot. It's a bit more expensive but they don't go through a lot of shells and they can shoot a 2 3/4" load of 5's with less recoil than a 3" load of 2's.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2020

  3. Ducksledfish

    Ducksledfish

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    To be honest, if you spend any time or money getting it to fit right for the late summer "practice rounds" by the time hunting season comes, it may not fit right, especially with thick clothing added into the equation. Then the next year it starts again.

    I bought a Mossberg 500 youth 20 ga for my 2 boys to share. Its a little big for the younger (9), but its just a starter gun and he will grow into it, then out of it eventually.
    It shoots 3" shells for hunting. It was cheap (and you get what you pay for) but once its outgrown I'll buy a semi 12ga gun for each.
     
  4. Buck from Florida

    Buck from Florida

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    Fitting new composite stocks is troublesome.
    You cannot just cut them down and reattach the recoil pad.
     
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  5. duckcommander101

    duckcommander101

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    It also depends on the size of the youngster that will be shooting the shotgun.
    My oldest was real skinny as a kid and I started him with a 20 ga single.
    The single shot had enough recoil to bother him and make it uncomfortable to shoot more than 8-10 shells.
    I picked up a Mossberg 20 ga pump and because of the extra weight of the gun the recoil was less and he did fine with it.
    He killed his first turkey, ducks and geese with that gun before moving to a 16 the following year and a 12 the year after that.
    My youngest is bigger and he started with the 20, killed his first turkey with it, hunted on weekend of duck season with it and then moved right up to a 12 ga.
    Keep in mind that this is when you had to be 12 to hunt, so they started with these guns at 10 1/2 years old.
     
  6. JPC6000

    JPC6000

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    Weatherby SA-08 20 gauge - or similar Turkish made, I believe Mossberg had one also.

    Can purchase adult stock as they grow.
     
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  7. goose schatt

    goose schatt

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    Bought my wife a tri-star over under. Had the stock cut down to fit her...$500, works perfect....no pumping
     
  8. flighthunter

    flighthunter

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    Turkish stuff may have improved quality over the years, but I have a o/u from around 2005 that broke both firing pins. I had a reputable gun smith repair it for me. They said the Turkish guys don’t “harden” their pins.... they ended up having to make the firing pins, not order replacements like you can with a browning, etc.
     
  9. Shiawassee_Kid

    Shiawassee_Kid

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    mossburg had a youth auto that was amazing. i remember a friend buying it for his kid...i shot it and was like...wtf i shot a single H&R 20 for my first duck gun and it kicked me around like a mule. lol. this thing had no recoil and had a nice swing for a jr. gun. I believe it was a SA-20 bantam.

    I wouldn't worry about price because you will absolutely have no problem selling for what you paid for it. I could sell a youth auto 10x easier than any other shotgun every year.

    https://www.mossberg.com/product/mossberg-international-sa-20-youth-bantam-75770/
     
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  10. BumpRacerX

    BumpRacerX

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    I bought the adult size version of this from a pawn shop in Alaska. It's been absolutely abused living a hard life up there. It was cheap and from what I read had low recoil which after shooting my Mossberg 535 on a messed up shoulder all season was critical to me. Low recoil is an understatement. No recoil is accurate.

    Are the boys shooting the Boss 7/8oz #5's? I've debated buying a box for my son (10 years old) to try. He's currently got 3/4oz steel #2's and #4's and 7/8oz steel #4's. Plus a ton of steel 1oz or larger #2's if he wants to shoot them.

    It looks like the bismuth #5 perform close to a steel #4 or #3.
     
  11. Outdoor Gal

    Outdoor Gal

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    We actually have a stock of Kent Bismuth and Remington HD from a while back. We found it on sale and snatched it up at a fraction of the retail price.. They shoot 6's and 5's at ducks and the HD 4's at geese. I've heard very good things about Boss ammo.

    A friend gave us a bunch of 29 gauge Black Cliud and Hypersonics but I'm hesitant to have the kids shoot that. Especially the hypersonics. I'll probably take them out with my 20 this week when I chase some local wood ducks and see how bad they actually kick. Lol. I normally shoot a 12.
     
  12. ESOX

    ESOX Staff Member Super Mod Mods

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    Semiautos will shoot a lot softer than any other action. I got my kid a womens/youth 20 ga. Beretta 390 when he was 10. Now he is 20 and still uses it, and has no interest in changing, he shoots it exceptionally well. It has kept up with his growth with different recoil pads and stock shims the gun came with. Handy little gun for grouse and bunnies with its little 24" barrel.
     
  13. Hammertime989

    Hammertime989

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    If you put a youth or small adult on a fixed breech gun and too long of stock, they will develop a flinch and they will continuously miss shots. As Shi kid said- semi auto with cut down stock, sell with no problem when the kid grows.

    Stock Fitters Bible has all the technical info about fit.

    John Brindle, Shotgun Shooting - for a very in depth look at shotgun shooting
     
  14. 3boyswoodsNwater

    3boyswoodsNwater

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    All that being said, if someone knows of a youth 20 auto for sale I’m looking. Finding good youth guns is tough. Currently, my kids shoot a .410 pump. Perfect for small game, but shells are expensive and not very widely available. Had a single shot 20 for them, it kicked harder than my auto 12. Those small single shots are brutal.