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Old 05-25-2020, 12:41 PM
THEmodelof1989 THEmodelof1989 is offline
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Default Old savage model 30 Boomstick

So my dad gave me an old savage model 30 with a chopped barrel. It's a right handed model with the tang safety. I know zero about these shotguns, aside from the fact that they were discontinued in the 70's, and would love any insight you gentlemen have.

My main question is, can these old timers handle steel shot or not? Also, if anyone has any replacement parts or a parts gun for sale I may be interested.
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Old 05-25-2020, 12:59 PM
Rpg Rpg is offline
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Iíd avoid steel shot if your gun is choked more tightly than medium choke.

You risk damaging the barrel with steel shot in a full choke gun of that vintage.

Last edited by Rpg; 05-25-2020 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 05-25-2020, 01:01 PM
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If the barrel has been cut you don't have to worry about damaging the choke. I would say it's okay to go.
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Old 05-25-2020, 01:33 PM
Drm50 Drm50 is offline
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Sav 30 is low end gun. With chopped barrel what are you going to shoot with steel shot? Won’t hurt it anyway. Unless it has sentimental value it’s not worth much.
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Old 05-25-2020, 02:09 PM
THEmodelof1989 THEmodelof1989 is offline
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Sav 30 is low end gun. With chopped barrel what are you going to shoot with steel shot? Wonít hurt it anyway. Unless it has sentimental value itís not worth much.
This particular model 30 is pitted here and there as well as being roughly chopped bubba style by my dad (he said he chopped it because he accidentally ran over the end of the barrel after a hunt) and probably worth less than $100, but aren't those the best guns to keep in the truck or boat?

Regarding steel shot, I've considered getting a bird barrel from brownells or off a parts gun; they are very inexpensive from what I've seen. Do I need to fix it up? No, I'm a Remington or Ithaca man anyway. Would it mean something for me to fill my fridge with the same tool my father used to fill his? Yes.
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Old 05-25-2020, 02:31 PM
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Steel shot will not damage that barrel as the choke is gone. As it's not a shotgun which would ordinarily be used for hunting migratory waterfowl, there is little reason to use steel shot loads anyway. But I understand some states require steel (or non-toxic) shot for certain other birds.

Last edited by DWalt; 05-26-2020 at 06:13 PM.
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Old 05-25-2020, 06:04 PM
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As DWalt points out, with the choke having been removed, the primary source of steel load damage is gone.
Heavily choked bbls have a tendency to not handle Steel shot loads in the same manner as they did the lead shot loads they were made for.
The Steel shot doesn't compress in the same fluid motion that the lead does in entering the constriction of the Full and Modified chokes. It can't compress fast enough and hesitates for a split moment and causes a bulge in the bbl at the breech end of the choke.
Sometimes the muzzle end of the bbl will actually split if thin.

The earlier mfg'd Steel loads used plastic wads that were thin..about the same as what was/is used with lead shot.
The much harder steel shot on it's way down the bore would wear right through the walls of the wad and score the bbl walls.
Some wads in addition had slits in them, some quite wide to assist in opening the lead shot patterns. The steelshot pushed it's way thru these slits and made the problem worse.

Steel Load Wads have since been made specific for such. They are much thicker and tougher than the plain lead shot wads.
Those used in USA mfg loads are a bit heavier than those you normally find in Foreign mfg ammo however.

There is still a chance of scoring the bbl walls and forcing cone of the bbl with steel loads. There's always a chance a pellet or two can get by.
But that's the damage,,scored/scratched bbl walls.
The gun won't 'blow up', it's not unsafe to shoot.
It can look pretty ugly in some of them that have a had a lot of the earlier steel loads thru them or some hand loaded steel using common lead shot wads..

Some mfg'rs just plainly say 'No Steel Loads thru their bbl's..period'
Others mark their later products as OK for steel loads. ..Tougher alloy steel in the bbl's ??

There's a 12ga Remington Sportsman 48 shotgun in my family. Bought new in 1953. It was used gently and with lead shot only till it was passed on to another member. Then when steel shot was mandated, a lot of that went thru it and scored the bbl quite badly.
It's still in use today and still gets it's seasonal supply of steel loads and keeps on working.
A Polychoke installed in the 50's made the use of Steel possible. The old Full choke would have probably bulged the bbl.
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Old 05-25-2020, 07:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by THEmodelof1989 View Post
So my dad gave me an old savage model 30 with a chopped barrel. It's a right handed model with the tang safety. I know zero about these shotguns, aside from the fact that they were discontinued in the 70's, and would love any insight you gentlemen have.

My main question is, can these old timers handle steel shot or not? Also, if anyone has any replacement parts or a parts gun for sale I may be interested.
I am not commenting on the steel shot bit but to me, any gun coming from your Dad makes makes it priceless and meaningful regardless of the dollar value.
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Old 05-26-2020, 02:05 AM
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Many better guns for duck hunting. It looks cool, no need for steel shot. A good HD gun, esp. since it came from your Dad.
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