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Discussion Starter #1
My sons 20 gauge, he has shot low brass shells for clay birds etc.. then we went squirrel hunting , I snuck in a high brass #4 , he noticed no difference. Then when I was patterning it for turkey, I used one of the heavy 13 3" #6 heavy shot. My goodness that thing racked me hard, thought I broke my cheek. I know fit is the issue for me, but what a way to set him back if that happens to him. My question is... high brass 2 3/4" 1 oz 1200fps federals, no problem, the heavy shot was 3" 1 1/4 oz 1090 fps. why so much more recoil? the pattern of the heavy shot is 5 times better that the federals. but they pack a wollop. so would another ammo type other then heavy meatal, like winchester xx turkey loads 3" 1200 fps 1 1/8 oz be the same recoiul as heavy metal or more like the federals?
 

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My advice is to pick up a box of premium pheasant loads, copper-plated 6's, and pattern those. He should be good to 25 yards or so, maybe 30 thru a good turkey choke. And without the recoil of a 3" turkey shell. At least, that is what I'm doing with my boy. No sense scaring him with recoil at an early age, it could set him back years as a hunter. Better to wait for a closer shot and use a shell that won't hurt him. If you're looking for an affordable turkey choke for a 20, try an Undertaker. I've never seen one of them that didn't work well.
 

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Why is there more recoil? Because there is more powder and shot, the more weight that is pushed out of the barrel, the more recoil. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. A 3 inch load will have more recoil, it doesn't matter what brand. Just use a premium pheasant load, copper or nickle coated and don't have the boy try long shots.
 

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I agree with all the above. You do not need a 3" round to kill a turkey. Try a few loads and pick the best pattern at a range he can get 100 or so pellets in a 10" circle and keep shots to that range.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
As far as his range, he is limited to the 25 yard range. I understand the larger the shell, the more kick, but was just surprised at how much more it was. this all being done trying to get the best pattern for his gun.
 

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I think you touched on the issue when you related to "Fit." I just returned from the range after touching off 6 rounds with a 20ga. 3" Federals and HTL rounds. I don't remember noticing any recoil.
 

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My 7 year old and I were patterning his 20 ga last weekend.He's only shot low brass target loads and they don't bother him.I snuck in a couple high brass pheasant loads and while he noticed the difference,it didn't bother him.I will say that I was surprised how well they patterned.At 30 yards,it would kill a turkey stone dead.I did buy some 3 in heavy 13's but I may just use the pheasant loads.He's not afraid of them and he doesn't need to be shooting past 30 yards anyway.
 

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The first time I took out a mentored youth she was using a 20ga and killed her first gobbler with low brass 7 1/2 shot, with a 25 yard shot.
 

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Many years ago, I took a turkey at 45 yds with a 7 1/2 shot trap load. It was with a 12 ga gun with a very full choke and placed 4 pellets in the neck and 2 in the head. The point being, light loads in a very special condition can do the job, e.g. gun, choke, distance, etc.
 

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Like the others said go with high brass 2 3/4" shells. They were killing turkeys long before 3" mags were introduced and still will. It is better to shoot a lighter load that he will shoot accurately than to shoot a heavy load that could cause him to flinch.
 

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When my son got to that point i switched him to a 12 gauge shooting 2 3/4.
 

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I remember that! Also remember you about had a fit when I showed you the shell!!
Wish we were doing it again this year...
 

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Me too
 

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See if you can find some Fed. 2 3/4" in heavyweight #7's. Should get a better pattern than regular high brass.
 

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You might also consider putting a good recoil pad like a SIMS Limbsaver on the gun. They come in a slip on version. That should help reduce recoil significantly with any load you choose.
 

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I shot my son’s youth model 20 gage that thing came up and whacked me right in the eye. I shoot a Remington SP-10. That 20 gage hit me harder, well not necessarily harder but worse, or at least is seemed like it. I handed that 20 gage to my buddy and it whacked him the same way. It was after I saw him shoot that I realized it was due to the size of the weapon. How we lined up, how the cheek weld we had vs a youth has. It was not actually massive or worse recoil it was how the weapon fit, it simply came up and hit me us both right in the eye/cheek bone. Which made it seem worse or as if a lager recoil occurred.
 

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My daughter (9 years old now and small in size) Shot her 870 20 gauge with 2 3/4 lo brass and shot like a champ. Last year gobbler at 30 yards and this time she had in a 3" #6 Heavy weight and down he went. She looked at me and said Wow that hurt, But I do not care because I just shot my first turkey!!!! She has shot again this year with no ill effects or flinches. She will be shooting the same load this Saturday knowing we will have another memorable day, turkey or not.
 
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