Overthinking, need help getting the GF a her first shotgun

teej89

New member
For her birthday I want to get her her own shotgun, she's 5'-4" 130# and my full size SX3 is big on her. The recoil is not an issue, she's shot 100 rounds of clays back to back days with no complaining and 3" turkey rounds(she's law enforcement so guns aren't new to her). However we went on her first pheasant hunt for 3 hours and she said she was feeling fatigued because of the weight of the gun with breaking brush and my fast paced flushing lab.

I had her shoulder a bunch of different guns and it came down to the Mossberg 500 bantam, she shouldered it and it was the only gun she instantly said "wow i really like this". Now I was like I'll obviously get the 12ga over the 20... well it turns out the 12 is 7.25# when my SX3 is 7#.... They make a 20ga synthetic which is 5.25#.

Here's my concerns about the 20ga, please talk me out of them.

1) It seems it'd be more inferior over the 12 for pheasants/clays/ducks and turkeys
2) The lighter weight, more recoil than my semi auto 12ga? Specifically for shooting 100 round sporting clays, not concerned about hunting with it

Pros about the 20ga
1) WEIGHT, 2.25# lighter than the 12ga. Carrying that over 5-10 miles a hunt is going to feel a lot better
2) However I could get her a hip holster to sit the butt of the 12ga in which would greatly reduce the weight of the 12ga.

Thanks guys!
 

jonnyB

New member
Seems like you are attempting to buy one gun for everything, including turkeys. Not sure the 20 ga is the answer.

I'm not a duck or turkey hunter but shoot sporting clays and pheasants - with a 20 ga.. Ducks over decoys, clays and pheasants will work for the 20 ga, but you may consider the 12 for turkeys.

Not all the 20ga guns are in the 5.5lb range so you may want to buy a gun (20) that's a little heavier, in order to avoid some of the recoil that a lighter gun can produce.

This probably has you more confused that before!!
 

max00

New member
Your GF will be fine with a 20ga for pheasant hunting & clay shooting.
I would have her pick out the shotgun that she likes/ that fits her/ that she's comfortable with.
A semi-auto will have less felt recoil than a pump because of the action.
I have a Mossberg 500 in 12ga for HD. The "bantam" model is a youth/female model with a shorten length of pull. I think you can find a better shotgun with a little more research.
If she wants to go turkey hunting, maybe she can borrow one of your 12ga's because it's a sit and wait hunt anyway.
 
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birdshooter

New member
For her birthday I want to get her her own shotgun, she's 5'-4" 130# and my full size SX3 is big on her. The recoil is not an issue, she's shot 100 rounds of clays back to back days with no complaining and 3" turkey rounds(she's law enforcement so guns aren't new to her). However we went on her first pheasant hunt for 3 hours and she said she was feeling fatigued because of the weight of the gun with breaking brush and my fast paced flushing lab.

I had her shoulder a bunch of different guns and it came down to the Mossberg 500 bantam, she shouldered it and it was the only gun she instantly said "wow i really like this". Now I was like I'll obviously get the 12ga over the 20... well it turns out the 12 is 7.25# when my SX3 is 7#.... They make a 20ga synthetic which is 5.25#.

Here's my concerns about the 20ga, please talk me out of them.

1) It seems it'd be more inferior over the 12 for pheasants/clays/ducks and turkeys
2) The lighter weight, more recoil than my semi auto 12ga? Specifically for shooting 100 round sporting clays, not concerned about hunting with it

Pros about the 20ga
1) WEIGHT, 2.25# lighter than the 12ga. Carrying that over 5-10 miles a hunt is going to feel a lot better
2) However I could get her a hip holster to sit the butt of the 12ga in which would greatly reduce the weight of the 12ga.

Thanks guys!
Just something to think about when shopping for a new gun.

The fit of the gun is going to be the most important aspect regardless of which model or gauge you choose. Light or heavy a stock that is TOO long is going to cause major felt recoil issues. Most off the rack shotguns are built for the average person and by person I'm talking mainly men roughly 5'9 180 lb. Most shotguns (unless they are a youth model) are likely to have a length of pull that will be too long for women unless they are fairly tall with longer arms. Not a problem really that a good gunsmith could not rectify by cutting the stock down and installing a premium recoil pad.

So make sure it fits or have one fit if you can't find one that does. If she can't mount the shotgun while having the butt of the pad rest into the shoulder pocket instead of the side of her upper arm or she has to turn her head sideways to look down the rib, it's too long.
 

JMc

Super Moderator
My wife shoots a Beretta A400 in 28 gauge and loves it. A 20 in the A400 would be a great gun. As for the 20, I own quite a few shotguns and other than an A5 Sweet 16, my go to guns are all 20's. The only 12 I own is a 3.5" duck slaying Maxus.
 

Chestle

New member
Benelli has a Compact 20 (and a 12 but it's heavier) with a Comfortech stock. I've got a regular M2 with that stock and it's pretty soft shooting. Additionally, the Benellis come with shims to adjust drop and cast for that all important fit. Two other recoil pads available to adjust length of pull as well, but you pay extra for those.

M2 Field Shotgun - Compact 20-Gauge 2-3/4" and 3"
24″ Black Synthetic, ComforTech® 44.0″ 5.6 lbs. $1,499
 

kick them up

New member
Depending on her frame the stock fit will be far more important than gauge selection. Women have longer skinner necks than males in most cases so stock with more drop at the heel and toe are better for getting the butt of the stock fully into the shoulder of the shooter. I see a lot of times where women and small framed shooters use a standard stock, and when the put the gun to their shoulder they have to raise the butt of the gun so high to get the right sight picture that most of the pad is high above their shoulder pocket thus causing most of the recoil on a small are of the butt. . Here is good example of a stock designed for women and small framed shooter. Notice the drop at the heel and toe

View attachment 8337
 

mgorvi

New member
If I had a girlfriend, my choices would be:
Cynergy Micro Midas OU if she’s blond and sassy
New Browning A5 Sweet 16 w/ 26” barrel if she’s a serious bird hunter, loves dogs, and kinda earthy in a cool sorta way
I’ve been married 45 years on July 1st, so I better not have a girlfriend. Good luck.
 

Swamp Collie

New member
Check out the Syren line of shotguns built specifically for woman. My wife was having problems with all the shotguns we tried from the youth models to the adults and none would fit her correctly. I researched the Syren line of firearms and the day she picked one up we walked out of the store with it and never looked back. She has the Syren XLR5 Waterfowler semiautomatic has been very pleased with the gun. Syren is a division of Caesar Guerini and they are a quality built shotgun. Syren also offers ladies over and under shotguns so I would highly recommend checking their firearms out. A correctly fitted shotgun makes all of the difference.
 

Roaniecowpony

New member
If a 12ga will kill it, a 20ga will kill it. The shot is all going the same speed.

That said, the pattern can be a little smaller. But, I've found many women prefer a 20 to a 12. Hell, I shoot way more 20 than 12. The guns are generally lighter, recoil generally lower, and overall, I like them. If upland is the game, I see no big disadvantage.
 

Jax74

New member
When my girl goes with me to bird hunt, I empower her with a Benelli Monteltro Super 90 20 gauge.
 

BritChaser

New member
If you're hunting over a dog, she can carry the gun on her shoulder or cradle it until the dog gets birdy or points. also, there are special holsters that you rest the butt of the stock in that carry all the weight.
 
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