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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm thinking about getting a shotgun to round out my collection of riflesand pistols. There are two aspects of shotguns I am not clear on: shell lengthand chokes. I've searched around Google, read some decent shotguns articles andthink I'm set to buy, but I would like confirmation that I understand thingscorrectly:

1) If I buy a shotgun that is marketed as having a 3" inch chamber, Ican fire 3" shells or 2 3/4" shells. Is that correct? Can I also fireso called mini/short shells?

2) One of the guns I am looking at is listed as having a "cylinder borechoke". This type of choke should allow me to fire slugs or #4 buckshot.Correct?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well, it depends on the shotgun.

If it's a standard pump action with a 3" chamber, you can fire pretty much any 2-3/4 or 3" standard shot shell out of it.

Semi auto shotguns can have issues with ammo, light or heavy loads can cause problems even if they say they can take it. That's why I prefer pumps.

With chokes, where you run into problems is whether slugs, will work or not. Most shot shells work with any choke, it's just a question of the pattern you want. For slugs, you want a cylinder or open choke, or improved/modified. If you fire a slug with an extra full or turkey choke on it, you can damage the gun, and possibly hurt yourself.

Never played with mini shells, they probably wouldn't work in a pump or semi auto, might be a single shot/ double barrel only thing. Don't think they'd feed properly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm thinking about getting a shotgun to round out my collection of riflesand pistols. There are two aspects of shotguns I am not clear on: shell lengthand chokes. I've searched around Google, read some decent shotguns articles andthink I'm set to buy, but I would like confirmation that I understand thingscorrectly:

1) If I buy a shotgun that is marketed as having a 3" inch chamber, Ican fire 3" shells or 2 3/4" shells. Is that correct? Can I also fireso called mini/short shells?
Yes. The 3" chamber allows you to shoot all shells 3" and under.

2) One of the guns I am looking at is listed as having a "cylinder borechoke". This type of choke should allow me to fire slugs or #4 buckshot.Correct?
Yes. A cyliner bore means the barrel is the same diameter for the entire length. A choke reduces that diameter. How much it's reduced depends on which choke you're using.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have been wondering about this too. Can you shoot those tiny 1.5 inch shotgun shells in a pump action? I should try it out but I refuse to pay that much just to try something I doubt will work.
You can shoot them, but they probably won't load properly using the pump. Single shot is your only option through a pump.

If you really want to shoot the mini-shells, use a double barrel shotgun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I have been wondering about this too. Can you shoot those tiny 1.5 inch shotgun shells in a pump action? I should try it out but I refuse to pay that much just to try something I doubt will work.

Depends on the pump.

IIRC, the only pump that would cycle those mini-shells reliably was the Winchester 1300.

Some people's 870's and 500/590's would but most wouldn't.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
OK, where did these mini shells come from and what is their use? I have used shotguns for 60 years and have never seen a mini shell before. What are they used for and why?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You original questions have been answered. Something to think about. Consider a shotgun with interchangeable chokes or barrels. It can be adapted to fill multiple roles from slug shooting to really tight turkey chokes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
OK, where did these mini shells come from and what is their use? I have used shotguns for 60 years and have never seen a mini shell before. What are they used for and why?
Aguila makes them.

I am uncertain of their usefulness as well. Sure, you can carry more on board, but I'd rather have less of a full-power shotgun load.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I think I saw something about the Keltec KSG being able to shoot the mini shells. I also think it said that it ment 12 rounds in each of the 2 tubes plus one chambered for a total of 25 shells. I'll see if I can find the article.

Edit: found it.

Kel-Tec KSG 15 Round Shotgun - New Gun Review
However that would require that 1) The KSG be available and 2) the KSG be reliable with anything.

;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Shot a KSG a few weeks ago for the first time. Was not impressed with the action or the placement of the red-dot sight. The whole thing felt odd to me. I think that I'm just to comfortable and confident with my current 590 to use something like that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
some guns may drop the minis.
Autos are a bit pickier or shell length than others. most have a variable gas system so you can adjust it depending on what your shooting. just gotta rememeber to do it.

If your a migratory bird hunter, be careful with a 3-1/2" chambered gun if it uses a plug to limit the magazine capacity. Ive seen game wardens spend close to an hour because he "knew he could get three in the magazine" He never was able to find three shells that would catch, but he did get close.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Shot a KSG a few weeks ago for the first time. Was not impressed with the action or the placement of the red-dot sight. The whole thing felt odd to me. I think that I'm just to comfortable and confident with my current 590 to use something like that.
At least you got to shoot one & give it a try.
I've been wanting to shoot one since I seen it on their website. Maybe oneday I'll actually get to see & hold one in person. Possiby even to shoot one would be great!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
The mini shells are typically used in double guns as training rounds or to provide a low pressure fodder to shoot in older guns with damascus barrels.

They are fairly anemic in performance and are also damned expensive...pretty much useless in a modern pump as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
If you don't have a specific reason for a 3" chamber shotgun there's really no reason to be concerned about it. It's nice to have, but probably not needed.

3" shells can be punishing in self defense loads. If you're a bird hunter, they can be useful, but beyond that, you'll probably never use a 3" shell.

For defense loads, cylinder bore is what you want.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I run an IC choke in almost all of mine, except my clay gun. I've heard before that if a dime will fall through the choke (out of the shotgun) freely, it'll shoot a slug just fine!
 
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