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Old 04-14-2017, 09:27 PM
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Is There Anyone Here Into Over and Under Shotguns for Sporting Clays? Is There Anyone Here Into Over and Under Shotguns for Sporting Clays? Is There Anyone Here Into Over and Under Shotguns for Sporting Clays? Is There Anyone Here Into Over and Under Shotguns for Sporting Clays? Is There Anyone Here Into Over and Under Shotguns for Sporting Clays?  
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I am thinking of a Browning Citori 725 Skeet Adj Comb Shotgun 0136173011, 12 Gauge, 28". They come at a price. Any other suggestions for me at this price or lower?

I appreciate your advise.

Thank you in advance,

Sid
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Old 04-14-2017, 09:43 PM
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Browning is hard to beat. Might take a look at CZ. Very well made guns and highly underrated.

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Old 04-14-2017, 10:32 PM
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If you plan on shooting a LOT of targets,buy the Citori. It will last forever,and your son..and his son. If you are just going to shoot casually,most any sporting gun will do fine.

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Old 04-14-2017, 10:57 PM
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I shot Competition Skeet with a Belgium Browning Superlight. It was a fantastic O/U. I left that sport burnt out on continuous competition. I still wanted to keep my hand in so started looking for a 20ga. O/U to casually shoot Sporting Clays. I found the Beretta 686 Silver Pigeon I Sporting Clays with a 30" length barrel and of course Multi-chokes. It was love at first shot. I shot that O/U for 10 years for Sporting Clays, Crazy Clays, Skeet, Trap and then horrors.....hunting Mt. Quail and Chucker. It did it all. I paid right at $2k for it and when I knew my hunting days were over I sold it for a little more than I paid. Such a deal! The only game bird I shoot today is the Dove. I can stand there and on occasion take a shot at an incoming bird. I have a little Fox SxS in 20 ga. with fixed chokes that is ideal for that particular job. I bought that shotgun from an old friend who was "done done" with hunting game birds. The first time I loaded it and stood there waiting for incoming Dove, I saw three birds coming in. I doubled right then and there. That was when I decided to sell the Beretta. While I really liked the Belgian Brownings I had owned, I wouldn't hesitate to purchase any Beretta product for serious competition use.....or any other use one wanted to put it to. ............Those Italians can build a pretty nice shotgun. ....
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Old 04-14-2017, 11:11 PM
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Buy once, cry once, the Browning Citori is a great shotgun. You won't second guess yourself if you buy it. And you won't have to buy it after you already bought another shotgun for $1,000 and eventually realize that you really want to buy the Citori...!

I bought the Citori 625 over 10 years ago when I got into sporting clays. Love the gun...
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Old 04-14-2017, 11:21 PM
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Bought a used citori 30" back in the 80s for trap and had it fitted for choke tubes so I could shoot skeet too.Did an awful lot of that over several years and then it sat.Pulled it out for sporting clays a few years ago and it was as good as I remembered.I don't know how many thousands of rounds I've put through it and it's still tight.Its a tank.
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Old 04-14-2017, 11:24 PM
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I use a Beretta 682 Gold E with the adjustable comb, and for extra fun I have a set of 28 ga. barrels that I occasionally use for skeet or 5 stand. The 12 ga. barrels are 32" and the 28 ga. are 30". I like long barrels. The setup is a bit more expensive than the Browning you're looking at but it's very versatile and built to handle many tens of thousands of shells. I'll never wear it out in my lifetime! The Browning is a great gun too. Buy the best you can, even if the price hurts. You will never regret it.
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Old 04-14-2017, 11:27 PM
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Buy a Browning "Sporting Clays" model for Sporting Clays. Skeet model gun is not the right gun. Go for a 30 or 32 inch barrel. Lots of longer than skeet range shots.
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Old 04-14-2017, 11:33 PM
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The difference between a Browning and a Beretta is just an individual thing. Unless a person is rich they can't afford to buy enough shells to wear out either one.
If you are only going to use the gun for sporting clays I think you should try 32 in. barrels before you buy but I find the 28 in. work better for hunting and skeet.
Just my thoughts but my wife says I'm dumb as a clam. Larry
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Old 04-15-2017, 12:33 AM
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I have a number of Beretta semi autos and a 686 Onyx O/U 30". That gun just felt right in the store so I took a chance. I shot 22 on the auto trap the first time I shot it. I had it fit later and have shot well at sporting clays, five stand and trap.
See if you can meet up with someone that will let you try one or the other. The guys I see at the trap field are pretty much willing to let their gun go for a quick tryout if asked.
Most people in the sport are really helpful, and once you get the feel of one, you'll know. Either of the top brands are going to treat you right, and they hold value better than some of the lesser names.
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Old 04-15-2017, 12:34 AM
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Originally Posted by tops View Post
The difference between a Browning and a Beretta is just an individual thing. Unless a person is rich they can't afford to buy enough shells to wear out either one.
If you are only going to use the gun for sporting clays I think you should try 32 in. barrels before you buy but I find the 28 in. work better for hunting and skeet.
Just my thoughts but my wife says I'm dumb as a clam. Larry
Dang that's a long barrel, you sure Larry? I'm thinking quickness and time on target. Am I mistaken?
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Old 04-15-2017, 12:46 AM
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Dang that's a long barrel, you sure Larry? I'm thinking quickness and time on target. Am I mistaken?
For true Sporting Clays, the longer barrels come into their own. If you are going to be a true competitor, go for the 32" barrels. .............
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Old 04-15-2017, 01:12 AM
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For true Sporting Clays, the longer barrels come into their own. If you are going to be a true competitor, go for the 32" barrels. .............
I did not know that. Thanks Big Cholla!
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Old 04-15-2017, 01:30 AM
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I shoot Skeet and Sporting Clays most every weekend and have made all the usual shotgun mistakes. Years ago, everyone shot 26" barrel skeet gun. Now days 32 & 34" barrels are in fashion. Don't buy what's trendy, buy what fits you.

Today's Skeet guns and Sporting clay guns are the same for the most part. Trap guns are different. If you plan on shooting a lot, don't pick anything of lesser quality than a Citori. Cheap shotguns might be fine for the occasional shooter, but they won't stand up to long term shooting and good luck finding replacement parts down the road.

Have the gun fitted to you and you don't need an adjustable comb or butplate. Too many times people with adj stocks will suffer a poor score and immediately start changing the settings on the stock. If you absolutely have to have an adj stock, set it to fit, and then throw the adjusting key away.

Some other things you don't need; ported barrels (just makes it loader doesn't decrease recoil), lengthened forcing cones (unless they come that way), glow sights (don't look at the sight look at the target), and extended choke tubes (usually factory tubes work just fine, but might not look as cool).

I'd buy a 28-30" (unless you're well over 6' tall) barrel Citioi entry level target gun or field gun. Spend the money you saved on a gun fitting and some lesson from a qualified coach. Check out Joel Etchen (sp?) website for used shotguns. Shooters are fickled and often trade off a very serviceable gun for the latest greatest new thing.

I don't wish to sound like a know it all, I'm just trying to prevent you from making the same mistakes I have. Good luck.
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Old 04-15-2017, 06:54 AM
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Most of us old guys are shooting semi-autos for all clay sports, but at the Sporting Clays course, I'd say 90% of the OUs are Browning or Beretta
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Old 04-15-2017, 07:30 AM
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I have a Citori 2 barrel set of 12/20. They have imp/mod chokes on each barrel with the barrels 28" and 26" respectively. It works great for skeet and wobble trap at my club.
Love the quality of the "bank vault" receiver that I know will outlast my life.

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Old 04-15-2017, 07:52 AM
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Remember, whatever you buy, NEEDS TO FIT or it will be an expensive mistake.I have a Citori light, a couple of CZ's and a Lanber that get used for sporting Clays. The Lanber tends to get used the most because it fits me best.

Personally, I've learned not buy a o/u shotgun that I couldn't hold first. I've has some high end guns that I had to sell off (at a loss) because I couldn't shoot well with them. I also (still) have some inexpensive O/u's that I shoot exceptionally well because they fit.
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Old 04-15-2017, 07:55 AM
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I bought this one very lightly used a couple years ago for around $1100. It is a great gun for clays and with the adjustable chokes can be used for any other shotgun games except real serious trap.



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Old 04-15-2017, 08:26 AM
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Originally Posted by RdrBill View Post
Buy a Browning "Sporting Clays" model for Sporting Clays. Skeet model gun is not the right gun. Go for a 30 or 32 inch barrel. Lots of longer than skeet range shots.
Bill@Yuma
I agree with Bill. I think Browning's skeet gun is a great gun for its intended use but I would try to find a 725 Sporter with 30 or 32 inch barrels. And don't overlook a 20 gauge. 20 gauge sporters handle wonderfully - and 20 gauge is really no great handicap on most sporting clays courses.
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Old 04-15-2017, 09:21 AM
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The Browning O/U will serve you well. I have been shooting clays every week for several years. I shoot a Fabarms O/U and a Browning O/U for my serious clay shooting. I also shoot other guns and gauges over he course of a year's time, simply because I own hem and want to shoot them. A lot of people get hung up on equipment ( have seen this in a lot of shooting disciplines), at some level hardware will play a factor, but fundamentals and skill sets are more important.
I hosted a shoot years ago, and the fellow who Placed in the top five in a 100 bird shoot was shooting the only shotgun he owned, a old battered Remington 870 pump gun. It was his duck,bird and everything else gun, and he had never shot clays before. Kinda of brought things back into perspective.

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Old 04-15-2017, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Big Cholla View Post
For true Sporting Clays, the longer barrels come into their own. If you are going to be a true competitor, go for the 32" barrels. .............
And also go with a 12 ga. I don't ever remember seeing a 20 ga. in first place at a sporting clay tournament. 20, 28 and 410 are small gauges that have their own class.
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Old 04-15-2017, 09:32 AM
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I hunt pheasants with a Ruger Red Label and started shooting sporting clays with it, but it isn't just right for that sport. Two years ago I bought a Citori Crossover Target. I did not get to shoot last year due to the illness of a relative. I am going to work with a coach this year as I hope to improve my scores with the Browning. I am already signed up for a coaching session at the Biltmore prior to the SWCA meeting in Charlotte.
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Old 04-15-2017, 09:54 AM
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I bought a 30" Browning Special Sporting Clays in 1990. 27 years later it is still my go to for anything clays.....Sporting, Five Stand, Skeet, Trap, Wobble Trap....

My dad has a 28".....I've shot both and prefer the 30s. I have a 26" Franchi O/U that is just way too 'whippy", longer barrels just swing smoother.....up to a point.
BTW- Browning vs. Berretta...it's all a matter of fit. Shoot both, you'll love one and hate the other. You can't go wrong with either.

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Old 04-15-2017, 09:58 AM
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I hunt pheasants with a Ruger Red Label and started shooting sporting clays with it, but it isn't just right for that sport. Two years ago I bought a Citori Crossover Target. I did not get to shoot last year due to the illness of a relative. I am going to work with a coach this year as I hope to improve my scores with the Browning. I am already signed up for a coaching session at the Biltmore prior to the SWCA meeting in Charlotte.
I've shot at Biltmore several times. They have a beautiful facility there and I've improved by working with them. A few times we've had to let the wild turkeys clear the field or just shoot over their backs. They seem to pay us no mind.
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Old 04-15-2017, 10:23 AM
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I shoot a Citori 625 with 30" tubes for sporting clays, and a Beretta with 32" barrel for trap. Both great guns! BTW, for me, I don't like the 32" barrel for sporting clays, much prefer the 30"... YMMV
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Old 04-15-2017, 10:30 AM
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Another option to the browning or beretta shotguns is the Winchester 101, which is actually made by FN in Belgium. I have the 101 field in 12 gauge with 28" barrels, I got it on black Friday special for a pretty crazy price like $999 almost 10 years ago now I think. They also make a sporting model with 30 or 32" ported barrels, fiber optic front sight and I believe a higher grade of wood. In pretty sure the sporting can be had under $2k. I have owned and shot a number of brownings and I have to say these Winchester are every bit their equal, but can be had for less money.
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Old 04-15-2017, 12:42 PM
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glenncal1, I bought that exact gun (new) for $1485 in 2003, and it has served as a trap, skeet, and sporting clays gun. I did quit it for trap and bought a BT99+, but it still serves as Skeet and sporting Clays. I don't know how many 1,000 rounds I have put through it, but is is still as tight as a new gun. When Browning says "They shoot IN, not Out", they mean it. I wouldn't sell it today for what I paid for it. I did get the 28" barrel at the time, if I could do it over I'd go for the 30".

I bought a new MEC9000 loader about the same time and I haven't worn it out either. Best retirement presents I bought for myself.
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Old 04-15-2017, 05:04 PM
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Browning or Beretta is a bit like Colt vs Smith & Wesson. Either will do the job and both should last a life time.

Okay, I'm a Beretta guy. A large part of that is I've never found a Browning that really fit me. Browning and Beretta both run about the same when it comes to length of pull. Where they vary is in approaches to drop at comb and heel; comb width and cast off. I'm not a fan of adjustable combs. I prefer a gun that fits from the get go.

There are some minor mechanical differences that make me also prefer Beretta. One of those is how the look up. Browning use plates bellow the barrels that slide into a bite. Beretta use tapered pins that go into bites that sit between the barrels. Beretta's lockup system allows the action to be a little bit shorter top to bottom. The taper on the pins allows them to remain tight as they wear.(this type of locking system is also used on the new FN built Winchester 101s)

To me the Berettas tend to feel a little better between the hands. They feel a little more lively, nimble and lighter than their actual weight. The 12 gauge Brownings tend to feel clunky and like a two by four tipped on its side in my hands.

Again we are talking subtle personal fit and handling issues and your milage may vary.

So again Browning vs Beretta is a personal thing. Pick the shotgun that fits and handles well for you. With shotguns fit is everything. Either will last a lifetime with good care and both will do the job.

I don't always shoot over under but when I do I prefer Beretta Shotguns.

Been shooting this one since the mid 1970s

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Old 04-15-2017, 06:00 PM
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'Bill Bate's' post struck a chord with me. I bought my first Browning O/U when I was 20 y.o. .. I was 190 lbs. and all but 6 ft. tall. The O/U was a Lightning with 28" barrels and in 12 ga. It fit me like a custom fit. I could shoot the heck out of it on field birds, trap and even live pigeons. Two world famous trap and live pigeon shooters were customers of the LGS that I worked part time while in college. They were Dan Orlich and Jody Devers. They gave me informal training out on the very first trap range to be called "Harold's Club Trap and Sheet Range." I shot that O/U for 20 years and finally realized that I wasn't shooting it as well as I had once. I had picked up 30 lbs. and had lost some mobility in my neck due to a HS football injury. I thought about having that great shotgun re-fitted to my present physical limitations and shape. I didn't. I just couldn't alter that faithful old gun. I bought a new Browning O/U in 12 ga. Lightning bored Skeet and Skeet. I never shot it until it had been fitted to me. This is a long winded way of confirming what 'Bill Bates' is telling us in the above post. The shotgun, no matter what brand or cost, has to fit one's existing physical requirements and limitations. Most everyone can make an ill fitting shotgun work pretty well on going away or on coming shots. But, when the target is coming or going at a divergent angle, the fit must be close to perfect for us at that time. Of course the mental aspect of shooting well comes into play if one knows that their shotgun does not fit well and some shot requirements are going to be suspect confidence suffers and therefore results. Thirty years later after selling that first Browning, I was back down to 190 lbs. and still in fairly good shape. I had the Epiphany that if I had only put that O/U in the safe and kept it, I could now pick it up and do quite well. Oh well, lesson learned. ......
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Old 04-15-2017, 06:56 PM
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Dang that's a long barrel, you sure Larry? I'm thinking quickness and time on target. Am I mistaken?
It may not work for you but for several years I shot 25,000 to 30,000 shells a year and that is how I decided that for me 28 in. barrels are best for hunting and skeet and 32 in. for sporting clays. I also shoot Berettas. Larry

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Old 04-15-2017, 07:20 PM
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I agree on the Fit, as you don't have a rear sight on a shotgun, your eye is the rear sight, and you don't aim a shotgun, you point it. For me the Browning fit me, and I didn't buy it until I was 62, so it still fits pretty well. I also have a SKB 20 ga. field gun that is very light and handles like a dream in the field. I do shoot it some on skeet and do O.K. I lined it up with my Browning and it is a near clone, just slimmer and lighter. I formerly had a CZ 20 and I really liked the gun, but it had too much cast of and I just couldn't reliably shoot it so it went to a sale.
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Old 04-15-2017, 07:24 PM
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For true Sporting Clays, the longer barrels come into their own. If you are going to be a true competitor, go for the 32" barrels. .............
While long barrels are popular for sporting clays, I don't see how you can recommend 32 inches without knowing anything about the size, strength, or anything else about the shooter.
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Old 04-15-2017, 08:09 PM
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While long barrels are popular for sporting clays, I don't see how you can recommend 32 inches without knowing anything about the size, strength, or anything else about the shooter.
I taught all sizes of people to shoot and shoot well the Colt M 1911. I watched 5'2"/5'3" women and a couple of men stand alongside big people and out shoot them after mastering the basics. I was an assistant coach at the Remington Shotgun Club in Atlanta for two years. I helped with the indoctrination class instruction for mainly Skeet, but on occasion for Trap. It was my observation that small people who learn the correct foot position along with the correct body and head presentation did as well as any other sized person who was in the class. Normal upper body strength was all that was required to swing those heavier than today's shotguns. Endurance did come into play in the longer tournaments. I found that if a smaller person wanted to do well, they chose the shotgun/handgun that was going to do well for them and that shotgun/handgun was almost always whatever the 'big guys' were shooting. Of course there was always the delicate 'flower' that was out there on the firing line because her significant other wanted her there. They were usually shooting the lightest smallest shotgun or handgun possible. Their results didn't really mean much because they weren't there to compete. ..........
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Old 04-15-2017, 09:41 PM
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I dabbed my toe in sporting clays back in the mid '90's and in short order found myself hooked. Was shooting tournaments two weekend a month and hitting courses for a round or two a couple of times in between. I went through several shotguns. Started with a Remington 11-87 and soon had to have an over under. I bought a sporting clays version of the Citori. I didn't shoot as well as I thought I should so started on that journey through shotguns. A Remington Peerless, three Citoris and a Beretta. One day I took out a Red Label loaner gun from the range pro house and shot my best round to date. I bought a Red Label field gun and my scores went up so I bought a Red Label sporting clays special in both 12 and 20 gauge and eventually added a 28 gauge. I know they aren't for everyone but for me, the Red Labels just fit and I shoot them better than anything else. My 12 gauge Sporting Clays Special has had an awful lot of rounds through it too. I was probably averaging about 500 rounds a month for 8-10 years. I've slowed down a lot now but if I were to go to the range tomorrow, I'd reach for my Red Label. The Brownings and Berettas are definitely prettier, but I just shoot my plain Jane Red Labels a lot better.
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Old 04-15-2017, 11:43 PM
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I have a burning desire for a 725 Sporting with probably the 30" barrels. Just really like the feel of them.

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Old 04-16-2017, 02:27 AM
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I do not go often now, but hope to if I can after retirement. I hope that practice makes perfect.
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Old 04-16-2017, 08:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Bates View Post
Browning or Beretta is a bit like Colt vs Smith & Wesson. Either will do the job and both should last a life time.

Okay, I'm a Beretta guy. A large part of that is I've never found a Browning that really fit me. Browning and Beretta both run about the same when it comes to length of pull. Where they vary is in approaches to drop at comb and heel; comb width and cast off. I'm not a fan of adjustable combs. I prefer a gun that fits from the get go.

There are some minor mechanical differences that make me also prefer Beretta. One of those is how the look up. Browning use plates bellow the barrels that slide into a bite. Beretta use tapered pins that go into bites that sit between the barrels. Beretta's lockup system allows the action to be a little bit shorter top to bottom. The taper on the pins allows them to remain tight as they wear.(this type of locking system is also used on the new FN built Winchester 101s)

To me the Berettas tend to feel a little better between the hands. They feel a little more lively, nimble and lighter than their actual weight. The 12 gauge Brownings tend to feel clunky and like a two by four tipped on its side in my hands.

Again we are talking subtle personal fit and handling issues and your milage may vary.

So again Browning vs Beretta is a personal thing. Pick the shotgun that fits and handles well for you. With shotguns fit is everything. Either will last a lifetime with good care and both will do the job.

I don't always shoot over under but when I do I prefer Beretta Shotguns.

Been shooting this one since the mid 1970s

Really nice. Is that a BL-4 ? Love the old Berettas
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Old 04-16-2017, 10:32 AM
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Really nice. Is that a BL-4 ? Love the old Berettas
It is a BL-3. It is an extractor gun. The BL-4 has ejectors but beyond that they are the same gun. I passed it down to my son a few years ago. I hope some day he will pass it down to one of his sons.
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Old 04-16-2017, 10:53 AM
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The Browning Crossover target is a lot of bang for the buck. I prefer a 30in barrel.
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Old 04-16-2017, 11:22 AM
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Browning or Beretta. Which ever feels better to you.

The Browning does have some technical advantages: mechanical trigger reset, back bored.

I have a Grade V 725. It's super.
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Old 04-16-2017, 07:06 PM
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Thanks for all of your input. Upon hearing your opinions, which were great by the way, I think I've settled on a Citori Sporting 12 gauge with 30"pipes. I tried one at a local gun shop. It seemed to fit and move well. Again, thank you for each of your insights.
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Old 04-17-2017, 07:41 AM
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Sid....great choice for an all round gun. Long enough to be smooth, but still handle quick.

Quick story about mine.....shot my first 25 straight in Skeet with it. It was the second 25 of a fifty bird tournament. Missed high house one......and then ran 49 straight!

BTW - Truth in Advertising - it was a 100 bird tournament, the other 50 were Sporting Clays....

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Old 04-20-2017, 07:45 AM
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Just to update you all, after two weeks of researching pricing for the Citori Sporting 725 O/U. I found a new one online for $2450, no tax. Its being shipped to my local FFL now. Until this find, I could not get one for under $2699 plus tax in some instances. Can't wait to break her in! Thanks again!

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Old 04-20-2017, 08:27 PM
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I have been using a Ruger Red Label o/u with 26 inch tubes and love the gun.

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Old 04-20-2017, 09:29 PM
Joe Hohmann Joe Hohmann is offline
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I have a Browning 12 ga. and a Beretta 20 Ga. for skeet, and a Browning single barrel 12 ga. for trap.
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