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Thread: Slug Barrrel Vs Rifled Choke

  1. #1
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    Default Slug Barrrel Vs Rifled Choke

    My daughter and I are heading to MI to hunt deer. My son has a Winchester 1300 20ga youth model that fits her well. We took it out to the range to test different 2 3/4" slugs to see what shot best and suffice it to say that I was not impressed at 40 yards. The gun shot high and spread everything we tried. I think the best 5 shot group was 6" or bigger. We tried Remington, 2 types of Federal, and Winchester slugs. I did not try Brinneke yet.
    The gun does have screw in chokes and a 3" chamber. As I have never seriously done anything with slugs I need a bit of help. Looking on the net, there are several different manufacturers of RIFLED CHOKE TUBES. Do they work? Typically on any shotgun you may have tried, how much did it reduce the size of the group from a smooth choke? I did find them for around $40.00.
    Rifled barrels are an option, but at $200 large it is a bit of a bite to swallow. If I went that route, what are the pros and cons of different makes or models? I did look in previous posts but found very little guidance.
    While I am at it, does anybody have a barrel or choke for sale? Thanks for the help folks.

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    That is way too big of a group for 40 yards. What is the choke in the gun right now? I get pretty tight groups with a modified choke in a 12g 20" barrel using the "rifled deer slugs" out to at least 100 yards. The rifling on the side of the slug doesn't do much, but I've heard good results from some who have used a rifled choke tube. I would not recommend a full rifled barrel unless you would be shooting nothing but slugs. The full rifling removes your ability to use any kind of shot.

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    Default IC

    I used the Improved Cylinder choke. I was going to try the modified choke next. Do you think that would help? Is there a choke that is too tight? I did not measure the barrrel this morning, but it is a youth model, so the barrel is shorter than normal. Does that matter?
    I shoot ok, and my daughter, who is more used to a scope shoots pretty well. Still, with the long pull on the trigger and getting settled in, I threw out the flyers and just re-measured the groups.
    Federal Power Shock- 4 @ 5"
    Federal True Ball- 4 @ 5"
    Remington Slugger- 4 @ 9" (there did not appear to be any "grouping")
    I kept looking last night for more info on rifled barrels. It appears that the Winchester barrels may not come with iron sights. Is that true? What about after market barrels? If I purchase a rifled barrel, I would still plan on taking the smooth bore barrel for birds and just switch them out.

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    Ak, livin in southern Mich. slugs are all I can use, I have a Rem. 870, with a Special Purpose deer barrel with choke tubes it does have sights on it but I have it scoped, I use a rifled choke tube and it shoots a 2.5" group for 3 shots at a hundred off the bench its taken more deer than all my rifles combined. I have a complete saddle scope mount from B-Squared with 1.5-4.5 scope. If you are going with a rifled choke tube shoot sabots with it, if you are going with a smooth choke tube make sure it is an improved cyl. tube and shoot brinneke's or Light Fields, look into the scope mount it runs about 50.00 bucks and a rifled tube will run you 30.00-50.00 and put like a straight 2.5 power scope on it. If you need anymore help PM me, were abouts are you gonna hunt?

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    Default Thanks MI

    We'll be in the Thumb, not sure exactly where. Family has property there and we have access to several hundred other acres.
    Looks like an ok gamble to try the rifled choke tube. $40.00 is a lot cheaper than $200 for a barrel.
    If we can get this gun dialed in, we will plan on taking it as she will be familiar with it. We won't plan on a scope for now as more than likely this is a one time affair for this gun. She has an 06 but can't take that to MI.
    The slugs we tried say on the box they are "rifled". What is the difference between sabots and rifled slugs? Do all manufacturers make sabots, or just specific manufacturers?
    I never thought about it until just now, but has anybody worked on a trigger on a Winchester 1300? I know it is a shotgun, but there sure is a lot of pull in the trigger.

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    It is generally recommended not to shoot slugs through Full or tighter chokes. However, they will fit out the hole so you don't need to worry about doing an Elmer Fudd on the barrel. However, you can damage a full choke with repeated slug use. In the LE field, which uses deer slugs quite a bit, they usually run 870's with a fixed modified choke, though I've seen some improved cylinder as well. Unfortunately, police class barrels are bottom of the pile and specs vary widely (that's why these barrels didn't become trap or field barrels). The guys who shoot competitions usually won't use a police class barrel due to the sloppy specs.

    I've never seen Remington Slugger perform very well, so you might as well not count those. If you have more of them, just burn 'em up for close practice.

    I would suggest trying the modified choke to see what you get.

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ak River Rat View Post
    The slugs we tried say on the box they are "rifled". What is the difference between sabots and rifled slugs? Do all manufacturers make sabots, or just specific manufacturers?
    A rifled slug has rifling groves molded into the side of the slug itself. This method produces unreliable and inconsistent spin from a smooth bore. A sabot uses a smaller projectile in a plastic break-away carrier so you would be shooting a standard caliber rifle slug (actual bullet varies). The carrier piece separates when it leaves the barrel.

    If you can get your hands on a rifled choke tube, it may solve much of the problems you're seeing. I can't tell you anything about trigger work on a 1300 as I have no experience with the mechanics of that model.

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    Are you using the bead or a rifle type sight? Seems like shooting a tight group with a bead and rib would be difficult. Mine shoots very tight at 100 yds but I have a rifled barrel and a red dot. I use 3" Federals with the Barnes slugs, very pricey, but that is OK for me for as much as I shoot it.

    I have shot lengthwise through deer. Not sure what it takes to stop one.

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    AK, JOAT is correct on Rem. Sluggers I've never been able to get them to fly good either, I shoot Federal Classic Sabots in my 870 they work good and sabots are pricey to start lookin for something that works any better, Cabela's is showing 39.99 for Winchester 20 gauge rifled tube, somebody used to make rifled sights that clamped to the vent rib of a shotgun that will help alot and they aren't to pricey, I'll do some checking and see if I can find out who makes them, My Ex shoots an 870 20 guage smoothbore rifle sighted barrel and her used to shoot Winchester rifled slugs to 5" at a hundred yards. If I did this right here is what my 870 looks like, Thumb area is a good area alot of deer
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    AK, Midway USA are showing a couple different ones the 1st is a Truglo set part#260-256 front and rear sight for 46.99 and a Willams Universal Vent Rib Slugger Set part#671-251 for 34.99 these will help tighten her groups up hope this helps

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    Default Friend's experience...

    Friend mentioned that he picked up one of the rifled tubes, couldn't say for sure what make, but he DID say that with it and sabot slugs, it shot better than his rifled tube with the same load....
    I've also seen cylinder bore and modified smooth tubes shoot amazingly well at 70 yards with WW and Federal slugs in 12 ga.
    Here we have a choice between shotguns and muzzleloaders, including the inlines with sabots and scopes, and the only reason to go to a shotgun is that they're available as repeaters...

  12. #12

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    The rifled slugs are the Foster style slugs. The weight is forward like a badminton shuttlecock and the hollow base is supposed to expand against the sides of the barrel like a mini-ball. The grooves on the side are supposed to impart some spin, but as previously mentioned it really doesn't work to stabilize the slug. They are not for use in rifled barrels or for use with rifled choke tubes. Their only advantages that I've been able to figure out over the years is that they are cheap and legal. I've had better luck with Federal TruBall slugs in my smooth bore 870 barrel. They have a plastic ball that sits in the base cavity of the slug and at least theoretically keeps the slug straight in the barrel and the center of gravity where it belongs. With rifled barrels sabots are what you need. My personal favorites are the Remington Core-Lokt Ultra Bonded. But they are pricey. I've heard good things about the Winchester with Nosler partitions, and Hornady SST's. Like rifles, you just have to try a lot of different brands to find one your gun likes. I've found the cheap ones are OK for getting on paper at 25 yards but you have to move up to Brennakes, Lightfields, Buckhammers and the like to get better accuracy and performance. Even then your results will vary.

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    Default Holey Cow

    Catch the pun? I do like the big holes those slugs made in the target for sure. Ok, on to serious stuff. MI, you never said where you are. I will not ask for your favorite spot though.
    The WIN 1300 20ga we are shooting is vent ribbed with bead sight. Yes, with practice we can get tighter groups. I expect a rifled tube and sabots from what you all say can help too. Then looks like the next thing would be the sights themselves.
    I'll go to Midway to see what they have as I can't quite picture it from what you told me. But thanks for the info, my search should be easy. Right now the gun shoots everything high. I guess that means on rising birds it should always be on the money, right? HAH! Should I assume that the sights mentioned are adjustable? That would be just the ticket.
    Lots to do here, and not a lot of time. But you know the coolest part about all this, besides all you guys helping? Yep, I get to go on safari with may daughter. That is just awesome.

  14. #14

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    Have hunted deer a lot with shotguns, mostly without rifling. The best shooting shotgun I have is an Ithaca 37 12 gauge with a rifled barrel. Very accurate with a scope on it and shooting Federal sabots with the Barnes expander slug. The Barnes sabot really puts deer down. I've heard rifled choke tubes give similar accuracy as a fully rifled barrel. Carried a 16 gauge Ithaca Deerslayer for years (no rifling), incredibly accurate with Foster type slugs but the rifled barrel, sabots, & scope were a big step up.

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    AK, I'm in south central Mi. Jackson Co. about 80 miles south west of where you will be here is a pic of my best one from last year to get your daughter in the mood, Those sights look like and adjust like reg. rifle sights they diffenately improve your groups over just having a bead. I expect to see pic's on here when she gets one tell I said good luck
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    I saw an article in a magazine a few months back with Craig Boddington and he hunted Ibex on an island near Greece. He was restricted to rifled choke tubes and slugs without a scope. He was shooting an 870 with Buckhammer slugs and was getting groups around 2" at 100 yards.

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    Default Oh My

    What a beutiful Buck indeed! I will get her attention with this picture, that is for sure.
    Lots of good info here. I will check to see what is available locally, then go on line if needed. There is a gun show this weekend, so never know what a guy might find there.
    We will be coservative and limit her shots depending on her groupings. If she can keep the groups to 2" or 3" that would be great!

  18. #18

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    For you guys using a Foster slug out of a smooth bore, what type of accuracy can be expected at 75 and at 100 yds (with a scope). I have an 870 modified and an 1100 full chock that I want to start shooting slugs through next year.

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    BEARBOB, with a scope and I would buy a Improved Cyl. Choke tube you should be able to find foster style slugs that will group to 4"-5" for 3 shots at 100yrds fairly easy, you will have to try a few different brands and start out sighting in at 50yrds after you get on paper at 25yrds then work out from there.

    AK, here is a couple pic's from our local buck pole on opening day last year it fills up by noon.
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    Mi, could you imagine those being moose? Just keep those photos coming. My heart is a thumpin and I am ready to roll. There is some great country in MI, and great folks too. I like the history and ideas of strapping bucks to whatever part of the car they fit on and hanging deer in the front yard for all the world to see.
    I love the heck out of the small mom and pops stores and diners and just sit listening to all the deer talk. Wonder if Barrow Dave is taking a peek at the photos.

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