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Posted: 7/29/2005 10:26:18 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/29/2005 10:26:18 PM EDT by 82ndAbn]
My daughters, 11 and 16and their two friends have decided that going shooting with Dad and 10/22s at the range is good fun.

I would like to break them into shooting clay pigeons thrown from one of those Outers mechanical throwers. What does the crew here think about .410s as a starting shotgun ?. Will they be able to break the clays or will they get frustrated from the small shot load ?.

I have a youth remington 870 20 gauge but they may not like the recoil. My concern is they love the .22 but I don't want to turn them off to shooting with recoil or frustrating misses.

I would appreciate you sharing the benefit of your thoughts and experience with young shooters...
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 6:20:48 PM EDT
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 6:22:33 PM EDT

Originally Posted By chips:
a .410 is not a beginner's shotgun. it takes more skill to hit targets using it.

+1. All the folks at the cool funstore suggested buying my son a 20 for a HSC graduation present, and just using the lighte (Win. AA, IIRC) loads until he got older.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 6:38:01 PM EDT
At Scout Camp we used 20 ga and 410 shotguns. Only the smallest kids needed 410s and I think I shot the 20 ga at ages 11-12.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 6:43:12 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/29/2005 6:45:04 PM EDT by NotMrWizard]
I got a .410 NEF single shot for my son for his 11th birthday, and he loves it. Easy for him to clean and maintain by himself, and easy for him to handle in the field, being a bit lighter. So far, he's gotten squirrel, rabbits, and last year he knocked down his first pheasants with it.

We do just what you are talking about, using one of the stick-in-the-ground throwers, and he doesn't have any trouble hitting 15-20 out of 25 clays. He even went 22/25 with one box. We did notice with his that the shot group center hits a couple inches high at 15 yards, and slugs at 25 yards hit about 4" low, so I doubt he will ever do any hunting with slugs out of it.

All-in-all, he loves it. Being a break-open, it's very easy for him to clean, and that was one big thing for him - being able to do it all himself. One drawback is the price of the shells - usually in the $7-8 a box range. I'm going to get him one of the MEC Jr. reloaders (around $100) for Christmas this year, because he definitely shoots it enough. I've priced it out and the break-even point was 23 boxes of shells, which we'll definitely do in a year.

Good luck!

ETA: And if you do go with a 20 gauge, just look into getting a good recoil pad for the butt if you think it'll help.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 6:44:59 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/29/2005 6:45:30 PM EDT by Goonboss]
I gues I'm the only one who teaches tactical. I taught my wife to drive through her shotgun shells, unless she short shucks, or, whatever, but, at stopage, she's going for the pistola.

I mean, I understand matches and stuff, but, muscle memory starts early...Why not teach tactical transitions rather than...........Ok...I'll stop.

If your kin are not shooting 20 gauges, they shouldn't be shooting, IMO....I tuaght my wife, never shot before in her life, to shoot ona 20 gauge......I toaught her kids to shoot on a 20 gauge....11 years old and down.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 6:54:18 PM EDT

Get a 20ga autoloading shotgun to tame the recoil.

A Rem Youth 20 ga 1100 is perfect.

Load one at a time till they "get it"

I love taking my kids out with the 22!!

Link Posted: 7/29/2005 4:55:16 PM EDT
A 20Ga doesn't kick all that much more, shells are cheaper and you get a better hit probability. Go with a 20 Ga. and don't look back. JMMH, YMMV.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 4:57:04 PM EDT
My first gun was a .410, it's really hard to hit anything moving with one. Not being able to hit anything might be worse than the recoil of a 20 gauge. A semi 20 would be great.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 5:00:31 PM EDT
a .410 is not a beginner's shotgun. it takes more skill to hit targets using it.

Link Posted: 7/29/2005 5:00:35 PM EDT

Originally Posted By sp1shooter:
My first gun was a .410, it's really hard to hit anything moving with one. Not being able to hit anything might be worse than the recoil of a 20 gauge. A semi 20 would be great.

That's what I'm afraid of. Thanks.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 5:07:38 PM EDT
the .410 is just to hard to hit with and thats not fun either. im teaching a junior skeet class at my club right now and my 16 year old very slender daughter does very well . my 10 year old boy who weighs 90 lbs is right on the edge of being to small, so i would say that is the cut off . they are both using rem 1100 youth 20 ga.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 5:18:21 PM EDT
save yourself the humiliation

get a 20 ga.
Link Posted: 7/29/2005 10:03:40 PM EDT
Kids don't have the self imposed problems we have,don't tell them they can't hit the clay with it !

Just show them the proper leading skills and throw away(they will hit thebirds every time)!

In fact many great skeet artists use the .28 guage,and the .410!

I have a Ryder no 9 in .28 guage with a 34 inch barrell,you would be supprised at how fast it will move the shot down the barrell!

It's not a goose gun but for quail or dove,or rabbits its enough!

Just get them that .410 as many a game bird,squrill,rabbit,have been taken with it!!

Link Posted: 7/30/2005 12:41:19 AM EDT
I can't think of a more useless shotgun than .410. Sorry, just does not bring home supper. Nothing less than 20 ga. will do.

You want to break in a kid to shooting? .22LR.
Link Posted: 7/30/2005 4:41:55 AM EDT
My sin shoots skeet with a 20 gauge 870 youth he was 11 when he started, and he is a small kid, 75 lbs.

I had to cut one inch off the stock to fit him. Recoil not an issue with him, he shot 200 shells last weekend in a skeet compettion.

As far as a .410 being "useless" try breaking 100 outta 100 on the skeet range with one.

Link Posted: 7/30/2005 4:58:35 AM EDT
Link Posted: 7/30/2005 6:16:04 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/30/2005 6:16:53 AM EDT by Zoub]

Originally Posted By weptek911:
I have a youth remington 870 20 gauge

Then you are ready! Great gun. Use light target or dove loads. Regardless of gauge, if they shoulder it wrong, they are done.

I started with a Winchester 42 (a 410) No one told me it was a bitch to hit quail with one, so I did. But that gun shoulders and points like a dream. 30 yeas later I still KNOW I can hit with it.

As for my 10 year old daughter, she will be starting with a 20 gauge semi-auto Beretta and light loads, but I already own it. The short open barrel mike mentioned for the mossberg sounds cool! Especially on easy, going away shots

Another soft shooting, cheap gun is the Saiga .410. I like mine, and it has choke tubes so you can open it up.
Link Posted: 7/30/2005 3:26:38 PM EDT
I've heard that the .410 is actually an experts gun. Meaning they hold such a tight pattern it can be difficult to hit much of anything if your just starting out. My recommendation would be a 20ga. With 8 shot (dove/trap) the recoil would be very manageable for your daughters and their friends I would think.
Let us know what you have them try and how they liked or disliked it!
Link Posted: 7/30/2005 4:07:45 PM EDT
The 870 20ga is a good start, but if you could an 1100 20ga would be MUCH better. I shot trap competivley for years and helped teach hunter ed here for a while also. We used to teach a shotgun portion of the class and would use 2 1100 20ga that the state donated. Much improved results over the kids whose parents thought they were doing them justice with a .410. I've had kids tell me that my Beretta 303 Trap kicked less than thier 20ga or .410.

Light loads and proper mounting of the gun and it should be no problem with the 20ga.

BTW KUDOS to you for taking your kids out and teaching them!!!!!!!
Link Posted: 7/31/2005 7:34:27 PM EDT
Thank you to all , for your thoughtfull answers.

Link Posted: 8/1/2005 12:21:55 PM EDT
I got my 11 year old daughter an Rem. 1100 LT 20 ga. 21 inch barrel, pretty light and manueverable for a kid. She does very well with it.
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