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Old 10-12-2021, 10:36 PM   #1
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Location: New Ulm, MN area
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Default The 16-Gauge Is Most Versatile Shotgun. But Why Didnít It Take Off?

As a youngster, my Dad introduced me to guns and hunting. Pheasant, squirrel, rabbit, white tail deer hunting. As I got older, I got into duck and goose hunting also. We also shot a lot of clay pigeons, and did significant amounts of target shooting with his .22LR. Dad had a Remington Model 11, 12 gauge, a H&R .410 single shot, and a Remington .22LR pump action rifle (no idea what model). We spent a lot of time shooting them and a lot of seasons hunting with them.

My Dad had a Remington Model 11, 12 gauge (it's mine now), and I used his H&R .410 single shot, until I saved $75 to buy my own Remington 20 gauge semi auto (IIRC, it was a 11-87). One of Dad's friends had a Browning A5 16 gauge. I'd shot my Dads Model 11 in the past, and this day, his friend let me shoot his A5. "Sweet 16" doesn't even begin to describe how it felt when I shot it. It was lighter, had less recoil than Dads Model 11. Since that day, I've always wanted one.

I was at Scheel's after work today, and they had a new Browning A5, 16 gauge on the wall. Yes, I took it down and fondled the hell out of it. While the new models still have the 'hump back', it's not as pronounced as the A5's and Model 11's of old. That said, I'd still love to find an old A5 or Model 11, 16 gauge to add to my meager collection. However, the cost of 16 gauge shotshells, would probably drive me into the 'poor house'. I buy firearms to shoot, not just to 'sit there in the cabinet and look pretty'.
If you hunt multiple species with a shotgun, the 16-gauge is ideal. With the advancements in bismuth and tungsten shotshells and choke technology, the 16 can handle any kind of wild game you can legally shoot with a shotgun. Waterfowl, turkeys, grouse, pheasants, rabbits, squirrels, and even deer are all a good fit for the 16-gauge shotgun. I donít think you can say that about the 10-, 12-, 20-, or 28-gauge, and certainly not the .410-bore.

Sure, all of those previously mentioned gauges are capable of killing your intended quarry. But do you really want to lug a 10 or 12 up the side of a mountain to hunt quail? There are 12 gauges light enough for such pursuits, but I wouldnít want to soak up the recoil of those guns on a daily basis.
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Old 10-15-2021, 12:33 PM   #2
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I just passed my great uncleís Model 11 to my daughter. It was a USGI issue. First issued in WW2, it had the engraved hunting scene on the receiver, but a flaming bomb ordnance stamp on the barrel, and an ordnance stamp on the stock. My uncle carried it in the Korean War. He gave it to my Grandpa, then my Grandpa later gave it to me.

Ever put that ring on upside down? Makes it kick like a mule for an autoloader. Make sure the beveled side is down, and itís just the sweetest shooter. Get it wrong and ouch.

"The truly dangerous man dresses inconspicuously and is soft- spoken. He walks away from most confrontations. The only time you learn that the truly dangerous man is mad at you is a split second before you die, for he never fights. He only kills. The truly dangerous man knows that fighting is what children do and killing is what men do." - Charley Reese 1986
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Old 10-15-2021, 08:19 PM   #3
I'm a grumpy SOB
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: New Ulm, MN area
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Originally Posted by Sanders View Post
Ever put that ring on upside down? Makes it kick like a mule for an autoloader. Make sure the beveled side is down, and itís just the sweetest shooter. Get it wrong and ouch.
I remember I came home on leave between Ft. Knox & Germany (Oct. 83). Dad let me borrow his Model 11, and my brother & I went pheasant hunting one day. Between the 2 of us, we dropped 3 roosters. He gave me the 2 he shot.

I took Dads Model 11 home to clean it. Gave it back to Dad, then it went to my brother a couple years later.

When he gave it to me after my Dad passed, I asked if he or Dad ever shot it since the day he and I went hunting. My brother didn't think Dad had, and said that he hadn't. I must've put the beveled ring on upside down, and wiped off the light coat of oil on the magazine tube.

The first time I shot it, it kicked like a mule, and didn't eject and load the next shot shell. I ended up manually cycling the action that day. When I got home that evening, I did some looking on youtube and found out 'the problem'. I took it apart, installed the beveled rings and sleeve properly, and took it to my sons a week or two later, to try it out. Before trying it out, I took the forearm off, and shot a couple short blasts of CLP on both ends of the beveled rings and sleeve. I then put the muzzle of the barrel on a piece of cardboard on the floor of his shop, and pushed down a couple times. That moved the barrel/action enough to get enough lube where it was needed.

After checking to make sure the muzzle was free of obstructions, we stepped out to 'try it'. It shoots like a dream. And yes, it is one sweet shooting autoloader!
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Old 10-15-2021, 10:36 PM   #4
JD Miller
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I have a Winchester model 12 , 16ga
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