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Thread: Flaring a choke?

  1. #1
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    Default Flaring a choke?

    My mossberg has had a screw-in "modified" choke in it for the past 5 or 6 years. It used to be my uncles duck gun. I was wondering if the choke could flare out after a lot of use, and if I bought a new one if maybe my patterns would get a little tighter?

    Thanks!

  2. #2

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    I've heard that, but never seen it myself. My Mossberg actually dates back to before steel shot was required, so it's been used with steel for something like 20 years. I also have a Benelli SBE that's been shooting 3 1/2" steel over much the same time period without ill effects.

    I'm hesitant to say it "doesn't" happen, because I'm not putting anything like 300 shots of steel a year through each gun. I know fortunate hunters who manage that, but I easily put 100 rounds a year through each of them.

    As for improving the pattern, you might look into one of the after-market chokes from companies like Briley. Based on results I've seen with friends' guns, those highly engineered chokes are a bunch better than standard factory models. The Briley website is HERE.

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    Member markopolo50's Avatar
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    You might want to check the ID of the choke tube. Is the modified tube made for steel shot? Here is a chart from Carlson's showing dimensions.

    http://www.choketube.com/wbmw.html

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    Quote Originally Posted by FurFishGame View Post
    My mossberg has had a screw-in "modified" choke in it for the past 5 or 6 years. It used to be my uncles duck gun. I was wondering if the choke could flare out after a lot of use, and if I bought a new one if maybe my patterns would get a little tighter?

    Thanks!
    Steel shot in wad cups doesn't compress going through the choke as easily as lead shot does, that's where the problem occurs.Chokes can make a huge difference in your patterns; The use of steel shot vs lead shot will also. You can buy external chokes for waterfowl type steel shot. The best chokes for steel shot are cylinder bore over the barrel threads and then choke outside the tube adding 2-3 inches to barrel length. This stops the steel shot from hammering the threads. There are also extended chokes for lead shot and specialty hunting (like turkey and larger shot, or slugs).
    If your choke still unscrews freely it probably has suffered little. Heck it may even be a factory steel shot choke, these also can be improved upon with after market chokes.
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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    The more you shoot it the tighter the choke should become do to plastic build up from the wad.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Go here:
    http://www.turkeyshoot.net/GBG.htm

    Howard will make you any choke you want. He made a 36" barrel to switch out for the 20" on my Mossy 590a1 and equipped it with one of his special ultra-tight tool-steel chokes made expressly for steel. It extends out of the barrel by roughly three inches and has 1/4" thick walls to prevent blow-out.
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    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    The more you shoot it the tighter the choke should become do to plastic build up from the wad.
    That was my first thought also - take a pocket knife and run it around inside the choke and scrape out the plastic.
    Brav01 also has good points - I don't shoot 3 1/2 in 12 ga as I think that's trying to put too much thru the choke as well. I use a 10 ga when I want a 3 1/2 in shell...
    I have patterned many a shell and choke and what I have found is there are a ton of variables in ammo. You can get a great pattern many times just by changing brands of ammo - I shoot modified
    chokes which is ( full for steel ) and the Black Cloud ammo seems to be very good at holding a pattern for me. Kills very good as well and is not going to break your wallet.
    BTW if you pattern some steel it would be advisable to use cardboard with no backing - we made a steel pattern board some years back - works great for lead but steel will come back at ya for quite some distance - voice of experience - OUCHEEE MAMA!
    When asked what state I live in I say "The State of Confusion", better known as IL....

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    Furfish,
    I shoot a Mossberg 935 and use the Carlson's Federal Black Cloud choke tubes. They pattern much better than the factory chokes and are extended choke tubes as well. Be careful not to choose a choke that is too tight for steel to prevent damage and don't forget the choke tube lube! That makes a big difference when it comes time to remove the choke tube. As well Mossberg makes an extended choke set up called their X-Factor chokes. You can even get them ported. They are available through the Mossberg website.

    Good luck!
    John
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  9. #9
    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    The more you shoot it the tighter the choke should become do to plastic build up from the wad.
    I have been shooting and cleaning shotguns for over 30 years and I have never seen this happen.

    The pattern master style of chokes that cut the wad or restrict its flight behind the shot may build up some plastic debris depending on wad design.

    The only time I have seen wad plastic on a traditional choke was due to a poorly made choke tube that did not seat into the barrel and had a small ring at its base that cut into the wads. It only took two shots to figure out the issue and stop using the gun until the tube was changed out. Anytime you shoot a gun and can see the wad flutter out of the end of the barrel you have an issue and need to stop shooting.

    As for the OP, if you are wanting a better steel shot shooting gun get one of the extended choke tubes. I have been using Carlson's tubes for several years now and they perform well with Kent Fast steel shot of various sizes. Since they are also stainless steel they are easier to maintain in the harsh duck hunting conditions. They no longer make a lot of variations in choke sizes in their waterfowl line and only offer three standard waterfowl chokes available in a kit or in singles.

    You also have to consider that "a lot of use" for a shotgun made from modern materials would be daily competition shooting. Has the gun been used every day to shoot 500 rounds at the range? If not then it has not had what a serious shooter would call a lot of use.

  10. #10
    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    AK Ray,
    Plastic fouling is a well known hazard in the shotgun shooting sports arena. You are correct in that it may take many rounds to create a problem and type of ammo has an direct effect on build up. You are also correct in that most build up occurs where the threads meet the barrel. I have shot a LARGE variety of quality chokes and price did not seem to matter on build up much. I competed with Krieghoffs for years, Perr***i, Kolars, Beretta's etc and they all would have some plastic issues and sometimes from only 100 - 200 rounds - so it can happen fast at times.
    Here is a pic of high end choke tubes after 200 rounds - these are supposed to be quaility non build up chokes... Yuk!

    Dirty Chokes.jpg
    When asked what state I live in I say "The State of Confusion", better known as IL....

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    Quote Originally Posted by brav01 View Post
    If your choke still unscrews freely it probably has suffered little. Heck it may even be a factory steel shot choke, these also can be improved upon with after market chokes.
    I still screw it in and out with my thumb, it seems to be alright.
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  12. #12
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    When you pop the cap on a thousand plus shells a week it don't take long for plastic build up in fixed or tube chokes
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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