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20 guage too small

Old 11-30-2006, 12:18 PM
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Default 20 guage too small

some people say that a 20 gauge is too small for hunting deer
What do you guys think?
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Old 11-30-2006, 12:43 PM
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Location: 20' up, NJ
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Default RE: 20 guage too small

when i was younger, i shot alot of deer with 20 gauge buckshot. honestly, a couple of people i hunt with still take them when we do drives.

i think 20 gauge bushot is good enough as long as you are within 40 yards or so. i would rather have the extra "oomph" of a 12 gauge if i was using buckshot, but to each their own. this year, on a drive, i took a buddy's gun that was shooting 3 1/2" 12 gauge buckshot and it put a hurting on the two deer i shot. dropeed the first doe, second deer tripped over the first, got up, and i knocked him down.

now, 20 gauge slugs i hear work really well, and many people prefer them. i know my 20 gauge gun (now my brother shoots it) will outgroup my 12 gauge gun at 70 yards.

just my $.02
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Old 11-30-2006, 12:58 PM
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Location: Central Va
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Default RE: 20 guage too small

i killed 3 or 4 deer with my 20 guage 870 when i was younger. in fact, with 3 inch #3 buckshot, i dropped all in their tracks on the first shot. its a very capable gun at resonable ranges.
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Old 11-30-2006, 01:00 PM
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Default RE: 20 guage too small

20 gauge is plenty to kill deer with. With a rifled slug barrel and the newer saboted bullets, you should be good out to 100 yards.
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Old 11-30-2006, 01:17 PM
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Location: wisconsin
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Default RE: 20 guage too small

A 20 with the rifled barrel will drop them in there tracks!
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Old 11-30-2006, 01:35 PM
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Maryland but stuck in VA
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Default RE: 20 guage too small

My first deer was a button buck shot at 30 yards with a 20 gauge slug in 2 3/4". It was just a regular, smoothbore. The entry hole was little, the exit hole was huge. At reasonable ranges, a 20 gauge will do the job. I have a friend who's killed deer with a .410 and buckshot at close ranges, but I wouldn't recommend it (it's illegal in MD too).
-- B
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Old 11-30-2006, 01:49 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2003
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Default RE: 20 guage too small

My kids both have youth model 20 guages, both have shot duck, geese, turkeys and one has shot a deer (other one missed last Saturday [X(])

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Old 11-30-2006, 01:50 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,394
Default RE: 20 guage too small

A .44 magnum and a 410 shotgun slug are very similar ballisticaly, but for some reason people are very impressed the the .44 and not so impressed with the 410. Maybe Dirty Harry had something to do with it. Anyway, another fact is that buck shot is very limited in power and accuracy. Go ahead and fire back at me, but do your research first. Having studied buck shot, I would never take it hunting, unless slugs were not allowed.

That said, if I had a twenty and wanted to go deer hunting, I'd load it up with slugs. No reason in the world not to. If slugs were not allowed, I think I'd have to go buy a 12 or even a 10ga.

Not really realated, but just thought you may want to know. I just bought my son his first shot gun. It is a twenty ga. 870. It is what he requested for X-mas.

Good luck.
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Old 11-30-2006, 02:00 PM
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: California
Posts: 896
Default RE: 20 guage too small

I would go with the 10 guage. Federal makes 3 1/2 magnum loads with 18 pellets of 00 buckshot for the 10 guagewhich is twice what the regular 12 guage 2 3/4 inch buckshot load has.

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Old 11-30-2006, 02:04 PM
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Location: Indiana
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Default RE: 20 ga too small

i started with a Mossberg 500 20ga and kill a couple of deer with it would still be using it over a 12 but hunt with50caliber muzzleloaderyou cant be serious California
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