Guests - If You want access to member only forums on FM. You will gain access only when you Sign-in or Sign-Up on Fishing Minnesota.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Barony

3" vrs 3 1/2"

10 posts in this topic

There was a post in another category by someone looking for a 3 1/2 auto and it got me thinking. My upland guns are 3", and my waterfowler gun is a 3 1/2". I like the 3 1/2" and think it's cool to have one, but does a hunter really need one? My dad still shoots 2 3/4 at ducks and thinks the 3"+ is "overkill". I wouldn't think of shooting 2 3/4. What are the opinions?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Depends how good of shot you are grin.gif. I like a 3 1/2 just because I have more shot especially when shooting steel shot. But 2 3/4 and 3 will put them down just as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I Shoot 2 3/4 for upland and 3 for waterfowl. Like iff said, it's how good you shoot grin.gifgrin.gif.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Being a good shot is only part of it. I have shot thousands of rounds at water fowl. Lets take Canada's. It it's a 20-30 yard shot anything will do. But if your going beyond the 40/50 yard mark you will never regret the 3 1/2. I shot a remington 1100 3 inch for 10 years and shot lots of waterfowl. Then I baught a Browning Gold 3 1/2 and can bring down Canada's from 40/50 yards no problem. Did I become a better shot? No. It isn't a night and day difference but it is a difference. If I was shooting with a guy who only had 2 3/4 i would wait until he was done shooting before I started. I would say even for a good shot a 3 in shell is good to about 40 yards. I'm sure lots of people have taken Canada's beyond that. But I used to not take many shots beyond 40 yards but now with my 3 1/2 it's 50 yards. Don't let anyone fool you. Close shots anything will work but the farther the shot the saying "bigger is better" is true.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really don't see the benefits for everyday hunting (I can't shoot a goose to save my life). I used to really like the 3 1/2 for turkey hunting but I have shot turkeys out to 50 yards with a 3" (misjudged the distance). It is true you get more shot but you also pay for it. It is nice to have in case you need it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're right for everyday hunting. I'm just talking about waterfowl. I shoot over 150 geese a year in Canada and the US. For deer, pheasant, clays, I shoot what ever shell I happen to have at that time. Clays and deer mostly 2 3/4. Haven't been on a Turkey yet. But I think I would go with the 3 1/2 but if it's close enough a knife would work. grin.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't speak for waterfowling, but regarding turkey, my recommendation is mixed. Much here, depends on lead vs. non-tox "hevi-type" loads.

Back when I shot buffered, copperplated lead (3 1/2"), you'd get such a boom out of the load, that you'd actually flatten some of the lead pellets towards the back end of the shot-string. These would then "frisbee" and be fliers for you anyway, giving you some benefit, but rather little compared to your average 3" magnum load.

The "hevi-type" loads, being harder and denser than lead, resist the tendency to do this, meaning you really are getting more bang for your buck with the 3 1/2" loads.

At least with turkeys, I'm convinced that what kills them is total pellets with enough ft/lbs energy to penetrate and break bone, in a dense, even, pattern. IMO, total pellets trumps most all else, given that you have enough energy at whatever range you're shooting at. A 3 1/2" shell has quite a bit more payload, thus more pellets to achieve this goal.

Many will say with turkeys and waterfowl alike, "keep your shots within your effective range," or "don't shoot past 40." However, these recommendations rarely mimic normal hunting conditions; with fog, rises/dips in terrain, and fast-action come errors in judgement of distance and otherwise. We don't hunt on a football field, and while I bowhunt and practice ranging targets and animals regularly, I can be as much as 10 yards or more off, depending on conditions, slope, location, etc.

If it's in your budget, I'd strongly consider it for turkeys at least, when using the non-tox shot.

Joel

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hull length is not really a factor. Payload and velocity is what counts. I'm strictly and upland hunter, and I don't see the need to shoot more than 1 1/4 oz loads. A 2 3/4" shell will handle that fine. If I want to kill birds at 60 yards I'm more concerned about what choke and shot size I'm using than hull length.

Personally if I need to pack enough shot into a shell to justify a 3 1/2" 12 gauge, I'll be using a ten guage. With it's larger diameter a 10 gauge has a smaller shot string and is more effective.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would agree with the 10 gauge statement. If I was a strickly goose hunter I would by a 10 gauge or if I was rich and could afford a wide assortment of guns I'd have one for every occasion. But The difference in price from a 3inch 12 gauge to a 3 1/2 12 gauge isn't much. Plus it's added versitality. I wouldn't want to be the guy lugging around a 10 gauge all day through the cattails hunting pheasants. Plus if you ever go to resell the gun teh 3 1/2 is much easier to sell.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really good points guys. I particularly like the choke comment and the "not hunting on a footbal field". Man if I could just get a deer or turkey to walk on a football field!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0



  • Posts

    • megofishing
      I am planning on kayaking and fishing the Cannon River this season--between Cannon Falls and Hwy 61. I just want to know if the current is generally swift or lazy, i.e., can I paddle BACK to my entrance spot or do you  need to drift downstream and do the two vehicle thing. I understand it may depend on how low or high the river is at any given time, but in general, when things are 'normal', can you paddle back with little difficulty?
    • maxpower117
      I'll keep it short and simple. The causes of boom and bust on Mille Lacs.    1. Improperly managed slot limits. Too many large fish are allowed in the lake.  2. Netting during spawn. Poor spawning success.    The recent years of high catch rates rates indicate a good 2013 year class but most importantly it is a red flashing light for anyone paying attention. High catch rates are a result of good population AND low or decreasing forage. I put AND in caps because fish won't bite like they have  when they're not hungry.    Cut down that year class class before it's too late. I give it 2 more summers before another crash is inevitable.    Round and round we go, where it stops, nobody knows. 
    • megofishing
      After using most of the brands you've mentioned, I absolutely love Lunkerhunt frogs...real lifelike, and don't seem to fill up with water as much as the others. They also hold up really well--caught some pike and bowfin without them getting destroyed. I have been using the "Croaker" color exclusively, but definitely picking up some other patterns. They also make a popper frog which is great if you want to make a little more noise.
    • megofishing
      I agree with AlwaysFishing--you can come down in line weight for braid if you're just straight up bass fishing. I personally like 30lb if there are a lot of toothy critters around. I use 50-60lb when going after pike and muskie. Have you ever tried fireline for your spinning rod? When jigging, wacky worming, etc., I use 8-12lb fireline exclusively--you can feel EVERYTHING and no stretch is an added bonus. 
    • JBMasterAngler
      Very high expectations. Especially that splake...36 inches would be 2.5 inches longer than what the state record is.