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Posted: 4/17/2008 3:29:42 PM EDT
I picked up an 870 Wingmaster Classic Trap gun a few days ago. I am going to get into trap shooting with a buddy. While I like the looks of the gun, I am not certain that it fits me correctly. I have not shot it yet. When I look down the barrel I cannot get the mid and front beads to line with one another. I tend to see the whole vent rib and the 2 beads together but not on top of one another. Someone told me that on a trap gun that you want to see both beads and you don't need to get them perfectly in line?? That's not really making sense to me. The stock on the gun is shaped differently than most standard sporting guns that positions your head higher. I was considering maybe going back to the shop where I bought it, and getting another gun before I shoot this one if the fit is not right for me. What do you guys say?
Link Posted: 4/17/2008 5:07:01 PM EDT
A quick and simple test is to check the length of pull. While it's not the "proper" method, this is how I do it.

Stick the butt in the bend of your elbow, then see where your finger lands on the trigger. If you can just barely get the tip of your trigger finger onto the trigger, the stock is too long. If you can get your entire finger up to the last joint onto the trigger it's too short.

It sounds like the stock is too long and it's planting on your shoulder before it's high enough to get a proper sight picture. I'd have a little taken off the stock and the recoil pad refitted(or replaced with a limbsaver pad preferably). With shotguns, how the gun fits you is everything.

Alternatively, you can grasp the fore end at the very rear and remember to push the gun out a little further before you start bringing it to your shoulder.
Link Posted: 4/18/2008 5:42:09 PM EDT
That crook of the arm trick is not the correct way to measure the correct length of pull on a shotgun.  All it does is show how long your arm is.  Generally 2-3 finger lengths between the thumb and the nose is a good way to go.  It is easier to shoot a little longer than too short especially in a premount game.  Typically on a shotgun for trap you want the front bead to be set over the mid bead in a figure 8 pattern.  A trap gun is not made to shoot like a sporting clays gun.  A sporting clays gun is generally set to shoot about 50/50 or even a tiny bit high.  The trap gun is designed to shoot about 80/20 or higher which means 80percent of the pattern is over the point you aim at and 20 percent is under it.  In trap all the targets are rising targets so a high shooting gun includes the built in vertical lead necessary.  You want to generally be able to put the bead on the bottom of the target and center the pattern on it.  I would suggest patterning the gun and see where it is shooting before you do anything else.  Take a piece of large paper(wrapping paper)  Put a dot in the center, and shoot it and see where the shot is going.  If it is not going where you want it have an adj comb put on it.  I always liked todd nelson www.gunfitter.com  but any of the good stock people will be able to do the work.  This is best left to the stock fitters who do stock work all the time not the normal fix it all gun smith.  Adjust the comb just like you would sighting in a rifle if you want it higher, raise the comb etc.  Cutting the stock shorter to adjust the comb hight is not the way to go and causes more problems than it fixes.  Worry more about where the gun shoots and less on how the 2 beads line up or even ditch the mid bead all together.  If you look at what the top skeet and trap shooters are using it is pretty much across the board adj comb or a custom built stock.  The equipment they are using for a reason.  I use one on my skeet gun and won't shoot without one.
Link Posted: 4/18/2008 6:35:27 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/18/2008 6:37:28 PM EDT by machinisttx]

Originally Posted By EKUJustice:
That crook of the arm trick is not the correct way to measure the correct length of pull on a shotgun.  All it does is show how long your arm is.  Generally 2-3 finger lengths between the thumb and the nose is a good way to go.  It is easier to shoot a little longer than too short especially in a premount game.  Typically on a shotgun for trap you want the front bead to be set over the mid bead in a figure 8 pattern.  A trap gun is not made to shoot like a sporting clays gun.  A sporting clays gun is generally set to shoot about 50/50 or even a tiny bit high.  The trap gun is designed to shoot about 80/20 or higher which means 80percent of the pattern is over the point you aim at and 20 percent is under it.  In trap all the targets are rising targets so a high shooting gun includes the built in vertical lead necessary.  You want to generally be able to put the bead on the bottom of the target and center the pattern on it.  I would suggest patterning the gun and see where it is shooting before you do anything else.  Take a piece of large paper(wrapping paper)  Put a dot in the center, and shoot it and see where the shot is going.  If it is not going where you want it have an adj comb put on it.  I always liked todd nelson www.gunfitter.com  but any of the good stock people will be able to do the work.  This is best left to the stock fitters who do stock work all the time not the normal fix it all gun smith.  Adjust the comb just like you would sighting in a rifle if you want it higher, raise the comb etc.  Cutting the stock shorter to adjust the comb hight is not the way to go and causes more problems than it fixes.  Worry more about where the gun shoots and less on how the 2 beads line up or even ditch the mid bead all together.  If you look at what the top skeet and trap shooters are using it is pretty much across the board adj comb or a custom built stock.  The equipment they are using for a reason.  I use one on my skeet gun and won't shoot without one.


I'm aware of that, and stated it in my post.

Did you mean adjustable buttpad? I've never seen an adjustable comb on a shotgun.

ETA-- I've always found it easier to shoot with a stock that's too short than one that's too long.
Link Posted: 4/18/2008 7:43:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/18/2008 7:51:22 PM EDT by EKUJustice]
Yes adjustible comb.  They actually the the comb and install hardware that allows the comb to move up down left or right.  That is what adjusts how high and horizontaly the gun shoots.  The adjustible but pad dosen't do that.  It is more go get the gun to fit your shoulder pocket etc.  The comb is where the poi impact is determined. The butpad simply raises the entire gun which dosen't make it shoot differently as the eye bead relationship is the same the gun just is higher on the sholder (which can help with helping keep the head on the stock).  The way to make it shoot higher is to raise the rear sight ie eye by raising the comb.  The comb cost about 150 bucks and is the best investment out there.   Go to some of the bigger Skeet/trap shoots in the state and they are all over the place and most of the serious shooters will have one.  Most shooters unless real small don't need any shorter than the standard remington stock length which isnt real long to begin with.


Cutting his stock shorter won't move the eye at all as the trap stock is a parallell comb monte carlo stock not a sloping comb stock
Link Posted: 4/18/2008 7:43:56 PM EDT
If you're seeing rib- you are going to shoot high.

When you say the beads "don't line up" are you trying to "figure 8" them one on top of the other - or do you mean you are merely seeing the mid rib bead not in alignment with the front bead?

(I tend to be a bead cruncher - rather than a bead stacker) superimposing the mid bead into the front bead, and quite frankly, don't need a mid bead at all.

My gun is an 1100 which is the same shape and profile as the 870
Link Posted: 4/18/2008 7:45:05 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/18/2008 7:47:07 PM EDT by steveinct]
Swap another 870 trap barrel on it from an older gun if you can find someone with one and see if the beads line up right. I wouldn't put it past Remington to drill the hole in the top of the rib in the wrong spot

I've also found in my experience of 25+ years of ATA shooting (and I am in class AA with a 27 yard handicap) that "stacking" or figure 8 beads is not a good shooting habit.

Doing that takes your eyes off the TARGET and makes you shoot artificially high.
Link Posted: 4/18/2008 7:54:05 PM EDT
I agree the mid bead is not necessary, the one that came on my Krieghoff is long gone
Link Posted: 4/19/2008 7:03:34 AM EDT

Originally Posted By steveinct:
Swap another 870 trap barrel on it from an older gun if you can find someone with one and see if the beads line up right. I wouldn't put it past Remington to drill the hole in the top of the rib in the wrong spot

I've also found in my experience of 25+ years of ATA shooting (and I am in class AA with a 27 yard handicap) that "stacking" or figure 8 beads is not a good shooting habit.

Doing that takes your eyes off the TARGET and makes you shoot artificially high.


+1

I'm sure I'm not as good as this guy, but I shot trap long enough to know that keeping your head on the stock and your eye on the bird is more important than how the beads line up.
Link Posted: 4/19/2008 3:33:12 PM EDT
I finally got out and shot the gun today. I shot 75 or so rounds total and missed 3 birds. Now this was pretty informal as a buddy and I went to the range and used my small thrower, and it does not push them anywhere close to the speed of a trap house. I found myself worrying more about the bird than looking at my sight beads. I was pleased overall. My cheek is a little sore from the high comb though. Still getting used to it. The gun is not to short, I am 6' 3" with big long gorilla arms and a long LOP is nice. It's 14 1/4" on the Remington. I am going to join a team at a local sportsmens club and shoot most of the summer. I have never shot on team before, always just informal stuff, so it should be an interesting learning experience. Thanks for all of the tips.

Jim
Link Posted: 4/19/2008 4:59:14 PM EDT
If your cheek is a little sore I would look at the pitch of the stock.  The parallell comb shouldn't hit you in the cheek if the pitch is correct.  Try loosening the pad and insert some cardboard shims(shell box cardboard works great) a the top of the pad right below the screw and tighten it back up.  About 4-5 thicknesses should be a good start.  If it works there are pad spacers that do the same thing but this is a good cheap way to see what you need
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