Shotgun that's easy on the shoulder

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by leaf and lightning, May 17, 2019 at 4:19 PM.

  1. leaf and lightning

    leaf and lightning Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2010
    Messages:
    2,848
    Likes Received:
    3,023
    Location:
    Chenango Co. NY
    The shotgun I've used for years is a Rossi poly stocked single shot 20ga that I cut down(18.5") and jug choked to a light mod(tighter than IC, but not quite tight enough to be called modified). Made for a nice, light package that didn't catch on all the brush, and could take just about anything in the NE. And, it also kicks like a mule(bound to happen. It was only 4lbs to start with, and I took quite a bit of weight off when I shortened it). Which is a problem nowadays. I have a stent in the right side of my neck, and the doc said that excessive recoil could jar it loose. And that would be bad. Like stroke and death kinda bad. So I want to avoid that. And normally that's not an issue. Most of my hunting is with handguns(a non issue) or with light recoiling rifles(which aren't a problem). But waterfowl, upland game, and turkey are basically(and legally) shotgun only sports, and my only shotgun is a no go for me. So I'm in the market for a shotgun that doesn't kick too bad. Probably going to want to stick with 20ga(or maybe 16ga), and even though I hate how much it would limit me on waterfowl and turkey loads, I probably want to stay away from 3" mags. And, as much as I prefer a short, light gun, I realize that longer and heavier is the way to go. Any suggestions?
     
  2. GKiT

    GKiT Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    4,408
    Likes Received:
    10,935
    Location:
    rural America but not as far out as I would like
    20 gauge Benelli is a pretty soft shooting shotgun.
     
  3. Aspencreek

    Aspencreek Tinder Gatherer

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Tuesday
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    47
    You'll probably need to pick up a semi-auto in a heavier configuration (like 6-8 lbs instead of sub 4.) Both the extra weight and the semi-auto functioning will help to reduce the felt recoil. I've got a 12 gauge Beretta AL390 semi auto, and that kicks far less than my Midland 20 gauge single shot backpacker - but then the Beretta is twice the weight or better. As you mention you also can stay away from magnum loads, and if you really wanted to go light you can buy extra light loads from companies like Polywad that make low pressure/ low recoil ammo.
     
  4. southron

    southron Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2015
    Messages:
    1,679
    Likes Received:
    5,488
    Location:
    N.E Alabama
    A semi auto shotgun is the least recoil I know of.

    Weight matters, and stock fit and design also.

    I have a 12 fox double that I love. It sometimes has a bit of recoil however.

    A weapon has to get a bit past a 300 win mag for me to start really noticing recoil.

    A .338 Norma I have has noticeable recoil.

    Never really had trouble with shotgun recoil and I have had a fair number of single shot, doubles, and pumps that were more felt recoil than most any auto I've shot.

    My current fav 12 gauge social shotgun is a well loved and worked over 11/87 12 bore.
     
  5. woodsranger

    woodsranger Solitude Seeker Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2011
    Messages:
    1,563
    Likes Received:
    6,410
    Location:
    Michigan
    Not the answer you want to hear, but I'd think your life is more important than wing shooting. Maybe it's time to put that part of your life behind you and enjoy what you can safely do? Or use a .410 and limit the distance of the shots you're willing to take. A .410 is an expert's firearm, so maybe you'd enjoy the challenge of limiting yourself. :)
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019 at 9:15 AM
    Paulyseggs, Wasp, jstert and 2 others like this.
  6. RJM52

    RJM52 Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2009
    Messages:
    1,110
    Likes Received:
    2,079
    Location:
    Rochester, NH
    Unless you have a strength or medical problem why go light with a shotgun...especially in your situation... ANY shotgun 20 ga. and larger is going kick and the heavier it is the less chance you have of contributing significantly to your own demise....

    I would be looking for the heaviest semi-auto 20 ga. rather than the lightest...

    Bob
     
    leaf and lightning likes this.
  7. ezra45

    ezra45 Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    4,953
    Likes Received:
    8,811
    Location:
    Idaho/South OR coast
    Remington 1148 28 ga...
    Maybe.

    Regards,

    ezra
     
  8. Mikewood

    Mikewood Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2013
    Messages:
    3,004
    Likes Received:
    7,641
    You have a poly stock hu? If it’s like most synthetic stocked guns the butt is hollow and the recoil pad is screwed on with #2 Phillips head screws. Try unscrewing the butt stock and filling it with sand or lead shot. Screw it back together and I bet she gains enough weight to make it a powderpuff of a gun. If not a mossberg 410 and a full choke will do the work.
     
    leaf and lightning and Swampdog like this.
  9. gdpolk

    gdpolk Hobbyist Hobbyist

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    Messages:
    3,100
    Likes Received:
    2,270
    Location:
    Arkansas
    If your going to stick to 20g, these are the steps than I’d do...

    1) increase your overall gun weight
    2) find an automatic action, IMO the smoothest of the 12g duck guns that I have shot is the Benelli inertia system
    3) use a longer barrel with a lighter load and slower burning powder...may even want to reload
    4) put a thick cushy pad on it such as a Limbsaver
    5) use a strap on shoulder pad when you hunt like what the skeet/trap guys use...cheap and effective and worth the hassle in your situation
    6) consider adding a mercury recoil reducer to the buttstock
    7) consider adding ports to the barrel
    8) I would also entertain trying to shoot left handed just to move as much of the recoil to the other side of the body

    After all of this if your still struggling with a 20g your only options may be to go down in bore size (28 or 410), move to a pistol format (maybe a TC, 500, or 870) that moves all of the recoil out of the shoulder and into the hands, or to give up on the shotguns.
     
  10. leghog

    leghog Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2018
    Messages:
    940
    Likes Received:
    4,860
    Location:
    3.99 ft east of 4 ft west of here
    .410 is an expert's shotgun.
     
  11. Paulyseggs

    Paulyseggs Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    1
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2018
    Messages:
    3,677
    Likes Received:
    15,366
    Location:
    CT.
    I don't think it's possible. Even the heavy shotguns recoil. And that repeated recoil is whats going to get you.
    @werewolf won had a thread on repeated shotgun use and TBIs. I think this falls in the same category.

    I recall some days waterfowl or bird hunting, shooting a box of shells was common. Especially when you shoot like me!!:9: thats alot of repeated hits to your weakest link.

    Unless you learned how to shoot from your other shoulder.

    Easiest for that would be a semi auto with a RDS. Start shooting a bbgun lefty and work up
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019 at 7:20 AM
    leaf and lightning likes this.
  12. Robert Highhawk

    Robert Highhawk Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2016
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    2,092
    Location:
    Swamps and flat woods of Florida
  13. backlasher

    backlasher nothing to do and all day to do it in Supporter Bushcraft Friend

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    May 4, 2013
    Messages:
    7,122
    Likes Received:
    12,766
    Location:
    Gulf Coast, Texas
    I hunted ducks for years with a Remington 1100 12 ga. If you had that gun in 20 ga., it ought to fill the bill.
     
    leaf and lightning likes this.
  14. JohnP

    JohnP No more half measures Supporter Bushcraft Friend

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2011
    Messages:
    5,911
    Likes Received:
    25,513
    Location:
    Trinity, TX
    Energy absorbing stock. I have one on a Mossberg 12 gauge and another on an Remington 870 twenty gauge. They’re not pretty, but they sure help reduce the recoil.

    There are a couple of styles. This one is more traditional.
    https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1...rg-500-590-590a1-835-12-gauge-synthetic-black

    There’s a big coil spring in the roundish part of the stock.
    6835808B-F8F0-4A63-A040-54264AFB2B18.jpeg

    I’ve had both shoulders rebuilt surgically and heavy recoil hurts like the devil. I can shoot these all day long, 12 or 20. I wouldn’t shoot a 12 without one.

    Yes, I would heartily recommend these to a friend.

    JohnP
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019 at 9:11 AM
    leaf and lightning likes this.
  15. Moe M.

    Moe M. Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    Messages:
    3,943
    Likes Received:
    5,991
    Location:
    Southern MA.
    A lot of years of hunting with heavy high brass shotgun loads and many years of shooting Trap, Skeet, and Sporting Clays have taught me a few things about shotguns and managing recoil.
    The older I get the more sensitive I become to recoil and old bones and arthritis doesn't make it less so, while polymer framed lightweight handguns make them a lot easier to carry and less susceptible to damage from the environment, light weight is more a detriment when it comes to taming recoil.
    I also have a few of single shot shotguns, two are older model hunting guns, one is a single barrel Trap gun, the two hunting guns weigh in at about six pounds and kick like a mule, the Trap gun weighs about ten pounds and uses light target loads, I can shoot a hundred birds with that gun in an afternoon and not feel any effects from recoil, there just isn't any noticeable recoil.
    My suggestion like many others is to get a heavier shotgun, and yes a semi auto will shoot softer than a break barrel or pump gun, but it's not necessary, any shotgun that weighs in the upper 7+ ~8 pound range will help reduce felt recoil.
    Another thing that might help is your choice of ammo, if you're hunting high flying ducks and geese you're going to have to use high brass kick ass express loads to reach them, but for upland birds and most small game hunting you don't really need that much power or shot.
    I've found that with my 12ga. and 20ga. shotguns low brass Target and Field loads with 1-1/8 ounce shot loads or 7/8 ounce shot loads in my 20ga. will take small game or upland birds with ease when using #5 or 6 shot, and you get a lot less felt recoil, couple a heavy gun with light loads and you may have a winner.
    If you like single shot break barrel shotguns and want to stick with them you might want to look at the new line of single shot hunting shotguns offered by Henry, I think they are a little bit over 8 pounds and very well made, pretty too. ;)
     
    leaf and lightning likes this.
  16. woodsranger

    woodsranger Solitude Seeker Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2011
    Messages:
    1,563
    Likes Received:
    6,410
    Location:
    Michigan
    Thanks for catching the typo! I have added the missing apostrophe. :)

    Tough crowd! :11:
     
    leaf and lightning likes this.
  17. leaf and lightning

    leaf and lightning Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2010
    Messages:
    2,848
    Likes Received:
    3,023
    Location:
    Chenango Co. NY
    Not to mention that it's not a legal option for waterfowl and turkey in NY. Regs say no smaller than 20ga.
     
    Paulyseggs and woodsranger like this.
  18. leaf and lightning

    leaf and lightning Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2010
    Messages:
    2,848
    Likes Received:
    3,023
    Location:
    Chenango Co. NY
    The light shotgun was from before, when recoil wasn't an issue
     
    Paulyseggs likes this.
  19. castle22

    castle22 Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    Messages:
    356
    Likes Received:
    750
    I think any 20ga gas operated semi will do for you. Or any autoloader really, but the inertia systems have more felt recoil (slightly). Though if you’re coming from a light single shot 20 any fairly heavy semi auto will feel like shooting a BB gun.
     
    leaf and lightning likes this.
  20. woodsranger

    woodsranger Solitude Seeker Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2011
    Messages:
    1,563
    Likes Received:
    6,410
    Location:
    Michigan
    Oh.

    Hmmmm....well....there's always grouse n' woodcock! Also known as Pats n' Doodles. :)

    Granted, it would be hard to give up duck hunting though.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019 at 2:58 PM
    leaf and lightning likes this.
  21. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Messages:
    4,287
    Likes Received:
    5,076
    Yes!

    Take a look at Weatherby SA 08 and Mossberg SA-20.

    - both 20 ga
    - both light weight
    - both use Beretta gas system so recoil is almost nothing.

    Both made in same factory but Weatherby has a nice wood stock option where the Mossberg is synthetic only.

    I like the Matt black metal finish on the Mossberg but the nice wood on theWeathetby. Stocks are interchangeable between both of them.

    I like the Stoeger M2030’s but recoil will be slightly more because of the inertia system, but it’s still a lot less than 12 ga. This guns weigh 5.6 lbs.

    The Mossberg and Weatherby weigh 5.5 to 6.25 lbs depending on model.

    All three of these are common at my trap club and have good reliability record. The gas system needs more frequent cleaning but nothing unusual.
     
    leaf and lightning likes this.

Share This Page