Do all hunting shotgun?

tansinator

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I have an over/under I love for dove hunting. I have several others, Rem 100, Browning A5, Rem 870. I want to keep the O/U and sell the others and get one for turkey and ducks. 12 gauge only. Thinking Benelli autoloader. What would you buy?
 

Palmetto-Pride

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Only reason I have the two barrels is because I got the 24" barrel used dirt cheap $200 bucks I just prefer a short barrel for turkey hunting I actually like a 26" barrel better than a 28" barrel for duck, dove and everything else that flies. I shoot better with a shorter barrel.
 

fanninland

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SBE II or III 26”
Likely to shoot a lot more duck hunting than turkey hunting so if only one barrel go with the duck setup.

Tons of chokes - I too have run the Patternmaster for many years and like it, seems to be a versatile option.
 

CrabsandFootball

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Ok start this by saying I have a about $30k in shotguns at the moment and have hunted and competed with them for 25+ years. Have owned , shot and competed with just a about everytning. P guns, B guns, k guns and now Z guns. ( Zoli)

Beretta is what you seek. Older the better. The A303 is probally the best semi auto every built and you can get a nicest choked used on for about $600. The 390 and 3901 also great choices and now you are seeing 391s come down in price. Chokes and assessors are cheap and plentifully and parts are easy to find with great Smith's all over the country who can fix anything that ever breaks.

Browning gold/silver and the Winchester sx2 are also decent options. I just picked up a 3.5" NOS Browning silver for a song. Going to be a great goose gun next season. They are bassically a Browning gold without the shell release.

Some people rave about the new fabarms guns and the Remington v3 gets decent reviews but I will never trust Remington.

Inertia guns suck compared to gas guns.

Biggest question is do you want a 3.5" or just a 3" gun. That changes the options.

Bennelli is the most overrated brand in the shotgun world. It's usually recommended by light users with little to no experience. Beretta does everything better and it's not even close. They aren't bad guns but they certainly don't belong on the pedestal Joebob and Cletus put them on.
 
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Orphanedcowboy

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Save hundreds and buy a Franchi Affinity 3 or 3.5, easier to clean, larger bore diameter (.729" vs .723" for the Benelli), made a long side the Benelli in Italy, takes standard Beretta Mobil chokes, everything comes out the front, the only time you have to remove the stock is to adjust the cast and drop.
 

357Max

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@tansinator - If your serious about Ducks/Geese then you definitely want 3-1/2"! Steel sucks ass & don't buy into the 5 shot bullshit for ducks either, not in steel it flat won't work. You want 3-1/2" BB or BBB for Ducks & BBB or T for Goose.

I have a Benelli SBE 1 with a 26" + Kicks extra Full steel choke for duck/Goose and a ER Shaw 24" heavy rifled slug barrel with for end. Those barrels were made for Lightfield 2-3/4" slugs & are surprisingly accurate. I will never sell that gun.

I did have a Beretta A 390 and it was a work of art. Didn't ever have the heart to take it out in a duck boat & sold it.
SBE is lighter and faster + mine is the Black stock version better suited for getting beat up (and it has been).

Big advantage for the SBE slug barrel is that it includes the upper receiver, so scope/barrel stay together & stay zeroed. Takes 2 minutes to switch barrels.

Another well kept secret with the SBE 1 (maybe 2 not sure) is that they will actually hold 4 x 3-1/2" goose loads with the plug in.
DNR in my area all know it. First thing they ask when they pull up to your boat and see a SBE is hand them the gun.
How that works is you load 2 in the tube, 1 in the chamber, and drop 1 on the elevator before closing the bolt. Somehow the SBE knows there is already a shell on there and doesn't try to dump another out of the tube. It will run all 4 as fast as you can pull the trigger without a hiccup every time.

SBE's sound different too, as soon as Shooting starts in the morning you could tell who was shooting SBE's around you by the different sound they make.

I was a poor when I bought mine back in late 90's and $1100 was a lot, but I looked at it just like my tools. Did I want Craftsman or Snap On.
Anyone that turns wrenches every day all day as I did back then used Snap On and all the real water-men I knew back in the day that hunted waterfowl all winter on the the Chesapeake Bay ran Benelli SBE's
 
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Simonsza1

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Remington versa max and the mossberg 930 and 935 are great shotguns that will outlive you. Both have multiple different configurations and colors and there guns you won’t worry about dragging in duck blinds or laying in the dirt when you run out to grab a flopping gobbler. Shoot 2 3/4 for birds and clays 3” for turkeys and 3 1/2 if you want for geese
 

krw

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I hav owned several Benelli’s. Good shotguns. I have hunted extensively with Beretta 390 last 20? Yrs. Great shotgun! I do not care for the recoil of hvy lds out of Benelli’s. Have set 391’s also. Both 26”, 20 & 12. Great shotguns, jus partial to my old 390!
 

Pre-64

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I’ve seen many a gas operated gun go down when you are in a high volume shoot, the guy that stated benelli are for the occasional hunter has no idea of what he speaks, it’s almost comical to say that. The beretta/benelli debate has been going on the same as the ford/Chevy debate. If you want to shoot light target loads for the occasional trap outing get the beretta serious about hunting get the benelli and you’ll be happy.
 

sam4886

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If you truly want to go with 1 shotgun, you better get something that will go bang every time. Supernova comes to mind... You'll never beat the reliability of a pump gun. 870s and 500s have a billion parts you can play both if you want. The nova isn't too far behind in that respect.

If you want an auto, an inertia gun should be a little more reliable.

It really comes down to your budget. I bought an sx4 a few years ago to upgrade to an auto from my nova. I've still got both, and the sx4 has given me zero problems. Its very easy to clean for a gas gun, if that matters to you.
 
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wade2big

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I use an over under for all of my hunting.
They are a pain in the ass in a duck blind. Other than that Use I like mine.

Beretta semi autos are Cadillac’s. They are the softest shooting and smoothest shotguns. I much prefer them to Benelli and Franchi. That being said, I sold all my high dollar Benilli and Berettas. I kept one Franchi 20 gauge, an over under, a 930 mossberg, and a few pumps. I decided to keep the shottys on the cheap side.
 

hlee

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Yeah, I can see reloads being a bitch in close quarters. My duck hunting has not been from a typical blind, so it has not been an issue. That said, Every turkey I've ever shot has been with one of 2 over/unders. The same guns I've used for doves, skeet, quail, pheasants, trap, and sporting clays.
 
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Jack Master

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Beretta for sure. Love my a391. I've handled an a400 a couple times and they are impressive too. I've done the benelli, rem, browning... and i always come back the beretta. Deer. Ducks. Geese. Turkey. Trap. Sporting clays. Hogs. Pheasant. Done it all with the trusted beretta a391 extreema ii.
Check out the Beretta a400s. They are designed for waterfowl hunting. Most have a 3 1/2 inch chamber and hold 4 in the tube plus one in the chamber.
 
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Hookturnr

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Having gone through a pile of shotguns between hunting. trap leagues and sporting clays leagues, I still own a Beretta Silver Pidgeon II o/u that fits me like a glove and a Beretta A400 Xplor that will never go anywhere. I've got a nice older Ithaca 16ga. pump that goes hunting rabbits for the history of it but the Beretta's are the best I've used. I will say the Remington VersaMAX was stone cold reliable for the 3000 rounds or so I put through it shooting 5 stand and it runs whatever you shove in the damn thing! That being said, I went back to the Beretta and the remington is no longer with me.
 
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beetroot

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I use an over under for all of my hunting.
While you might only have 2 shots available, at least you shoot them with class!

I hate pump action shot guns, we have largely accepted the semi auto is better in rifles and pistols, yet pump shotguns seem to live on.
Only shotgun I've ever bought (and still own) is a Rem 870, the only reason I bought it was it was cheaper than the 11-87, kick myself for not spending the extra money.

A good semi looked after will function just fine, second shots are quick and the bloody fore grip doesn't rattle around.
My 870 sometimes gets a tight case that I can't extract unless I smack the butt on the ground holding the fore grip.
Shotgun shooters in my country use 99% semi auto and reliability simply is not an issue.

Bit of a off topic rant but other than being cheaper to by I can't see why pump shotguns are still so prolific.
 

wade2big

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While you might only have 2 shots available, at least you shoot them with class!

I hate pump action shot guns, we have largely accepted the semi auto is better in rifles and pistols, yet pump shotguns seem to live on.
Only shotgun I've ever bought (and still own) is a Rem 870, the only reason I bought it was it was cheaper than the 11-87, kick myself for not spending the extra money.

A good semi looked after will function just fine, second shots are quick and the bloody fore grip doesn't rattle around.
My 870 sometimes gets a tight case that I can't extract unless I smack the butt on the ground holding the fore grip.
Shotgun shooters in my country use 99% semi auto and reliability simply is not an issue.

Bit of a off topic rant but other than being cheaper to by I can't see why pump shotguns are still so prolific.
You said it. They are cheaper and shoot as fast as you can recover from recoil and swing on target again. Semi auto shotguns are plenty reliable.
 

MTS308

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I went with the benelli m2 26" in gore optifade camo. Been really happy with it so far. Mainly dove and turkey hunting. No regrets here.
 

rulellis

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I went from a single shot I used for everything when I was a kid, then to an 870 I used for everything for about 15 years, and a few years ago got the SBEii. I love that shotgun. I wanted the A5 and was in love with it but when I went to buy one I shouldered several and the Bennelli just aims naturally, the browning had to be moved slightly every time I brought it up. I know there are shims and such, but I couldn’t get past the confidence I had with how naturally the sbe goes on target. All that said go handle them all because all the ones mentioned here are great, but youlll find one that stands out.
 

hlee

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While you might only have 2 shots available, at least you shoot them with class!

I hate pump action shot guns, we have largely accepted the semi auto is better in rifles and pistols, yet pump shotguns seem to live on.
Only shotgun I've ever bought (and still own) is a Rem 870, the only reason I bought it was it was cheaper than the 11-87, kick myself for not spending the extra money.

A good semi looked after will function just fine, second shots are quick and the bloody fore grip doesn't rattle around.
My 870 sometimes gets a tight case that I can't extract unless I smack the butt on the ground holding the fore grip.
Shotgun shooters in my country use 99% semi auto and reliability simply is not an issue.

Bit of a off topic rant but other than being cheaper to by I can't see why pump shotguns are still so prolific.
Yeah, I learned that if I need that 3rd shot, more often than not I didn’t need the first 2. Come home with more ammo and more birds. Weird. As to class, I‘ve been eyeing a 28 gauge side by side- I think it would be a good companion for our GSP while quail hunting.
 
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BytorJr

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Since it was mentioned, why the hate on the Fabarm? I've never shot one, but they have a pretty good reputation it seems over on SGW's website forum.
 

beetroot

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Yeah, I learned that if I need that 3rd shot, more often than not I didn’t need the first 2. Come home with more ammo and more birds. Weird. As to class, I‘ve been eyeing a 28 gauge side by side- I think it would be a good companion for our GSP while quail hunting.
I think Ive shot 2 birds with 1 shot more times than hitting a bird on my 3rd or 4th shot having missed the first 2.
 

hlee

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Since it was mentioned, why the hate on the Fabarm? I've never shot one, but they have a pretty good reputation it seems over on SGW's website forum.
I’m guessing “new kids on the block. I mean, they’re an Italian gun maker, but barely 100 years old. Pffffft...
 

hlee

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I think Ive shot 2 birds with 1 shot more times than hitting a bird on my 3rd or 4th shot having missed the first 2.
The VAST majority of my bird hunting has been morning doves. Only 3 shots, and they’re moving... Really just getting into quail hunting, as the GSP is a recent addition to the family. But, I have hunted them some, and while I haven’t shot 2 with one, I can see that being a thing with upland birds.
 

CrabsandFootball

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The problem with pumps is the user. When you factor in user error, a quality semi will always be more reliable. Short stroking is very common and I would see it all the time in the blind or trapping the Pump division in NSCA tournaments. It’s more common than the gas system choking or a bad shell.

For clays I primarily shoot Zoli , wife shoots my old beretta 682 and we have a bunch of beretta and browning semis for everything else. I have owned everything and competed with just about everything. We have learned what works and what doesn’t over the years and they were some very expensive lessons.
 

CrabsandFootball

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Since it was mentioned, why the hate on the Fabarm? I've never shot one, but they have a pretty good reputation it seems over on SGW's website forum.
I don’t think there is much hate, they just don’t have the longevity that other proven designs and manufactures do. They are also expensive and like most firearms today, aren’t built to last a lifetime. Polymer is fine on a $400 pistol but a $2500 shotgun should last generations.
 

Blaster7Romeo

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I have an over/under I love for dove hunting. I have several others, Rem 100, Browning A5, Rem 870. I want to keep the O/U and sell the others and get one for turkey and ducks. 12 gauge only. Thinking Benelli autoloader. What would you buy?

You asked and answered your own question.. just make up your mind is shooting a 3.5inch shell is worth the extra money....

FYI the answer is: Yes

SBE 2 is what I have and what I would suggest


A runner up may be a Beretta .. main thing with a shotgun is how it fits and feels in YOUR hands.. go put your hands on them before making up your mind
 

tacops1

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I shot them all.... it was down to two... SBE and Browning Maxus.... the Maxus won go check one out it’s a great design and sweet shooting gun that eats everything ya feed it
 
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BytorJr

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I don’t think there is much hate, they just don’t have the longevity that other proven designs and manufactures do. They are also expensive and like most firearms today, aren’t built to last a lifetime. Polymer is fine on a $400 pistol but a $2500 shotgun should last generations.
I've only handled an L4S Sporting and not for long as the gun store was starting to put pressure on "buy it." Didn't notice any polymer - are we talking trigger guard and possibly the end cap or vent rib? I'm a bit surprised and saddened to hear. I'd actually been toying with one of these or their O/U. Certainly I won't disagree a 2500 shotgun should last at least 2 generations, if not more - it's a shotgun for Pete's sake :).

Though, if I ever do the duck hunting thing again, I'll go full polymer stock as much as it would kill me to do so.
 

BytorJr

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I shot them all.... it was down to two... SBE and Browning Maxus.... the Maxus won go check one out it’s a great design and sweet shooting gun that eats everything ya feed it
Have they fixed the rattling forearm on that Maxus? Love the way it shouldered when they came out and I had a Scheel's near. Just couldn't get over the rattle in the forearm. Also the triggers on Brownings are/were designed by attorney's - how's your Maxus? A gun I really want to like....but just cannot get there yet.
 

acudaowner

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while I can't say its a hunting shotgun I have always wanted a benelli m3 convertible I saw and shot one and love having the choice between pump and semi auto depending on the day and a mood change I have 2 Remington Model 870.'s and they are just fun for almost everything from adding ventilation to trashcans to making paper targets disappear opening doors to skeet . But that switching between the two modes is almost as cool as jumping behind the wheel of a 8 second quarter mile hot rod well almost . Besides what cant you do with a shotgun they make a round for almost any circumstance not to mention some can use drum mags lol who would not want 20 rounds of 12 gauge joy in there hands .
 
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tacops1

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Have they fixed the rattling forearm on that Maxus? Love the way it shouldered when they came out and I had a Scheel's near. Just couldn't get over the rattle in the forearm. Also the triggers on Brownings are/were designed by attorney's - how's your Maxus? A gun I really want to like....but just cannot get there yet.
Not rattling the forearm design is awesome with one quick disconnect bar. No crappy screw caps.
Trigger is great no issues like first gen guns had and browning has no issues taking care of those

I can’t complain... while I keep shooting I laugh at all the SBE guys complaining how their gun won’t cycle this and that load and thumps them harder
 
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wade2big

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If you want a do all shotgun, skip any models that shoot 3 1/2” shells. Some will shoot cheap light target loads fairly well and many will not. The inertia guns such as the Franchi and Benelli will struggle more with the lightest loads. Nothing wrong with the guns at all, as they are designed for standard to heavy loads. The Beretta 3 1/2” semi autos will cycle them reliably.

I will say to never cycle the winchester superspeed target loads through semis. I have had many stuck cases with them. The aluminum rim can be ripped off easily by the extractor. Many semis wont cycle them anyhow. I have had no issues with the federal bulk packs

Most shotguns that max out with 3” shells will cycle lighter loads more reliably. I havent found a use for the high dollar 3 1/2” shotgun shells myself. I had some old 2 3/4 BB shells I found in an old barn. I figured ai would take them goose hunting in the pasture to seewhat the short shells could do. I crushed the geese with them. After that morning I realized those high dollar 3 1/2” shells do not but kick the shoulder and the wallet.
 

wade2big

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It may have been that those old shells were lead and not steel which would be why you crushed the geese.
They were steel. I wasn’t sky busting either. I dont do that.

I’m not recommending 2 3/4 on geese. I much prefer 3”. I do use 2 3/4 on teal and ducks though. I patterned some 3 1/2“ against 3” loads on paper and the 3” loads put more steel were it counted at least with my shotgun with that particular choke.