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Q:
Im going to be shooting pigeons this week and before now i've been using a single shot 20 gauge. I am going to however be using my grandpa's old Browing Auto 5 12 gauge. I picked up three boxes of shells of 12 gauge Federal #7 1 1/8 oz. 2 3/4" target loads and it just so happened 1 of them was steel target loads. I am not sure if it is safe or not to shoot this out of the old auto 5. I am not possitive on the choke but it is not interchangable and it is not a full choke. I looked online and many say the old Auto 5's are not safe with steel because the barrel metal is too soft. Is this safe even with the small shot size of #7's?

Question by Turkeytalk101. Uploaded on November 16, 2012

Answers (9)

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from Greenhead wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

How old is the gun? Was it made in Belgium or Japan? How many "*"s are on the barrel?

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from clinchknot wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

That's the question I would ask...If you know it isn't full how do you know it isn't full? I would say it was made in Belgium, and not to use steel shot. I know a guy that ruined, bulged the barrel of a Browning Belgium made using steel...but it was a full choke. And Pigeons will take a bigger hit, and not come down compared to doves.

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from Turkeytalk101 wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Thanks for the help. I don't have the gun in my possession right now so I don't know where it was made. And I'm pretty sure even light steel loads will take down pigeons. What would be the preferred choke on a modern gun with steel shot for wing shooting?

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from Greenhead wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Depending on the range, I would use either modified or improved cylinder. Actually since steel tends to pattern tighter than lead, I would start with I.C. and see how that patterns.

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from labrador12 wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

I wouldn't worry about it at all. It takes more than 1 box of target loads to hurt a barrel. I've been shooting steel duck loads through Model 12's for over twenty years with no issues.

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from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Light trap loads are okay in steel in that barrel. Kinda rare though. Can't imagine what purpose those would serve.

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from crm3006 wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

If your shotgun was made in Belgium, it should say so on the barrel, on the right side midway of the forestock. However, I just looked, and one of mine did not have the "Made in Belgium" marking. Likewise, there is a star code on the barrel, on the left side. One star (*) full. Two stars (**) modified. Three stars (***) improved cylinder.
Modern target loads using a wad that fully encases the shot load won't hurt a Browning barrel.

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from Turkeytalk101 wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Thanks for the help guys.

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from Trapper Vic wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Personally I would not shoot steel through a vintage gun like that.

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from Turkeytalk101 wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Thanks for the help. I don't have the gun in my possession right now so I don't know where it was made. And I'm pretty sure even light steel loads will take down pigeons. What would be the preferred choke on a modern gun with steel shot for wing shooting?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from crm3006 wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

If your shotgun was made in Belgium, it should say so on the barrel, on the right side midway of the forestock. However, I just looked, and one of mine did not have the "Made in Belgium" marking. Likewise, there is a star code on the barrel, on the left side. One star (*) full. Two stars (**) modified. Three stars (***) improved cylinder.
Modern target loads using a wad that fully encases the shot load won't hurt a Browning barrel.

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from Turkeytalk101 wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Thanks for the help guys.

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from Greenhead wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

How old is the gun? Was it made in Belgium or Japan? How many "*"s are on the barrel?

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from Greenhead wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Depending on the range, I would use either modified or improved cylinder. Actually since steel tends to pattern tighter than lead, I would start with I.C. and see how that patterns.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from labrador12 wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

I wouldn't worry about it at all. It takes more than 1 box of target loads to hurt a barrel. I've been shooting steel duck loads through Model 12's for over twenty years with no issues.

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from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Light trap loads are okay in steel in that barrel. Kinda rare though. Can't imagine what purpose those would serve.

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from Trapper Vic wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Personally I would not shoot steel through a vintage gun like that.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from clinchknot wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

That's the question I would ask...If you know it isn't full how do you know it isn't full? I would say it was made in Belgium, and not to use steel shot. I know a guy that ruined, bulged the barrel of a Browning Belgium made using steel...but it was a full choke. And Pigeons will take a bigger hit, and not come down compared to doves.

-2 Good Comment? | | Report

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