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Shooting a K-80 TS

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by gun fitter, Nov 21, 2011.

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  1. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

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    I've heard a lot of good and bad about experiences with the Trap Special.

    Basically the first really high rib adjustable rib gun.

    How many have had problems learning to shoot them?

    What did you have to do and how many have given up.


    Joe
     
  2. blackfoot

    blackfoot Member

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    Given up and will be selling my TS top single! I tried!
     
  3. bluedsteel

    bluedsteel Member

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    Best trapgun I have ever used. I bought one after trying many guns...hoping something cheaper would work for me. My hopes were in vain.

    bluedsteel
     
  4. DTrykow

    DTrykow Active Member

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    No problems with mine. High Scores, low recoil. People complain about canting but if your stock fits that's a dead issue. Fully adjustable. If you get one and are close to PA, go to the Factory for a fitting. Well worth it. All and all a great gun for me. I shoot an Unsingle. The Top single had more kick. Didn't like that. Dave T.
     
  5. mooney

    mooney Member

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    I have found mine a very difficult gun to shoot. Matter of fact, my scores are embarassing so I'm going to take it to the Southern Grand and trade it in on a P gun.
     
  6. blade819

    blade819 Well-Known Member

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    I had a TS Unsingle and did well with it. Traded it in for a Top Single with Wenig Campbell stock and my shooting went into the toilet.

    blade819
     
  7. Desert Hiker

    Desert Hiker Member

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    Location:
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    I'm doing well...23,24 25 pretty consistenly with my unsingle; not bad for an old guy whose been shooting just a few years after taking 40 years off. Ron
     
  8. goose2

    goose2 Well-Known Member

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    I have owned a SKB,Browning XT,Beretta 687, CG,BlaserF3,Kolar Max T/A and now a K80 T.S. all in combo form. While all go bang when you pull the trigger, my scores never go real good until I purchased the k 80. For me there is no better gun. It is just a joy to shoot. It's one of those match made in heaven, if you know what I mean.
    Good luck with your choice.
     
  9. hot springs

    hot springs TS Member

    Joined:
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    I bought one in May and the jury is still out. Scores in all three disciplines went down initially but are on their way back up. The canting with an unsingle and tall rib was a real problem for me. I had a new stock built and seem to be doing much better now. There is a HUGE transition to shooting a TS compared to any flat ribbed gun. Try one before you buy and be prepared to be humbled before you get it worked out.
     
  10. AveragEd

    AveragEd Well-Known Member

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    I tested one of the first, a Super Scroll grade unsingle, shortly after their release. I thought it was the softest-shooting gun I'd ever fired. I didn't shoot it enough to say if I could or couldn't adjust to the rib height but I think my preference would be the top single.

    Ed

    averaged_2008_0303284.jpg
     
  11. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    You'll notice some parallels between the factory stock and needing a custom stock!!
     
  12. hot springs

    hot springs TS Member

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    Ed,

    I would enjoy reading your comments about the K-80 Trap Special you tested. Is there a link to an article you could provide. Thanks. Happy Holidays!
     
  13. vpr80

    vpr80 Active Member

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    Tried a combo demo for two weeks. Absolutely hated it. Scores were ok, but I disliked pretty much everything about it. Bought a P-gun and it was just right from the first shot. Works for some, not for others.
     
  14. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

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    OK thanks for the posts. I was trolling for some info.

    Here's my take The TS is a Fine Gun and Properly setup will work well for most.

    Unsingle or Topsingle is a personal preference.

    Here is the problem That I see.

    Many who have shot The older K-80 are struggling for an obvious reason.
    With the TS Stock fit is much more critical and the stocks offered in many instances just don't plane work due to several fit issues.

    If you have been shooting a std K-80 for a few years you are probably best served by duplicating your old stock setup with a come height to accommodate your new rib height.

    For those interested you could look at my posting on building a TS stock.

    Purchasing a custom stock that is not custom for you is a poor investment in your shooting future.

    I don't wear Eli Mannings Shirt: It's too small! Why would I shoot an All American Named stock that wasn't made for me. If it was made for me you couldn't call it anything but my stock.

    Selling off the rack items as custom because so and so uses it escapes me.

    Joe goldberg
     
  15. goose2

    goose2 Well-Known Member

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    I will add to my other post. I personally can not shoot the stock that comes with the k 80. I have a custom made stock now and it does not get any better. Since the new stock was added there has never been a cheek slap or sore shoulder. I have several friends that use the factory wood and I have not herd them complain. Dont think that just krieghoff has bad factory wood because my Kolar stock was not right for me either . That's why one must shoot a gun before purchase.
     
  16. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

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    goose2-Who built your custom stock?
     
  17. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

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    Goose which other post?
     
  18. Sky Buster

    Sky Buster Sky Buster TS Supporters

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    Minnesota
    I had the Gurini high rib trap (similar to the K-80 rib) Couldn't
    shoot it despite my best efforts. I went to a Perazzi MX-2000 and
    scores zoomed. The Guerini was slow to the target. The 2000 is a
    very lively gun almost the feel of a good sporting gun.
     
  19. AveragEd

    AveragEd Well-Known Member

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    For those who might be interested in it, here is the text of that gun review. WARNING: it's a long read.

    The name Krieghoff is synonymous with quality in sporting firearms and the model designation K-80 is well known and highly regarded anywhere clay targets are thrown. Just as important, service after the sale from Krieghoff is equally top-notch. I am fortunate to live less than a two-hour drive from Krieghoff International’s sales and service center in Ottsville, Pennsylvania, and can only advise anyone who appreciates fine guns to plan a visit there if you’re ever in the eastern part of our state. There aren’t many international corporations where the CEO walks through the showroom and service department several times each day and takes the time to chat with every customer, but I’ve witnessed Dieter Krieghoff doing just that. Additionally, the treatment rendered to every customer is very personal, as is to be expected of any high-line product.

    The Krieghoff K-80 is a descendant of the Krieghoff Model 32, which was a derivative of the Remington Model 32 over/under (O/U) shotgun. Back in the early 1940s, Remington was experiencing sluggish sales of its Model 32 due to its selling price being substantially higher than the pumps and autoloaders of that era. The reason for that price was the cost of the hand fitting required to assemble a quality hinge gun, but American hunters were opting for the ability to load three to five rounds for less money over the quality and feel of the more expensive two-shot Model 32, so Remington stopped making the gun. An American-German investment group acquired the blueprints in the mid 1950’s and scouted for a suitable gunmaker for their Model 32 in post WWII Europe with its rich tradition of gunmaking and low production cost at that time in comparison to the United States. Among their choices was Krieghoff in Germany and the company received orders in 1957 to build a few prototypes. The investors liked the results and Krieghoff begun building on a contract basis Model 32s exclusively for Europa Corporation in Miami, the investors US company and sole importer/distributor of the Model 32 at that time. Hal du Pont purchased Europa Corporation in 1965 and has been connected with the Krieghoff story ever since. In 1975 the Krieghoff Company in Germany gained full production and marketing rights to their gun. The exclusive arrangement with Europa Corporation was phased out.

    Initially in 1957 and following, there were lots of efforts necessary to get the gun started. Under the scrutiny of their German craftsmen, Krieghoff refined and improved it before successfully reintroducing to the shooters of this country at a price that was several hundred dollars more than Remington had been asking for their Model 32. During the late 1970s, the Model 32 was further refined into the K-80, which was released in 1980.

    Primary differences between the Model 32 and K-80 include stock profile, wood finish, rib heights, receiver hardness (M-32s were by no means “soft”, K-80s are just super-hard), triggers, hammers and a few other things. Both guns share the unique Krieghoff sliding top latch and barrel boring that is considered to be among the best in the world. K-80 trap stocks are thicker, the standard comb is lower and several stock profiles are offered. The reddish M-32 finish was replaced with a clear polyurethane, the higher Vandalia rib profile available on the M-32 was not carried over to the K-80 but the newer gun got its own wider rib. K-80 triggers are adjustable for length of pull (LOP), their rounded, tightly curved shape makes them about the most comfortable trigger out there and K-80 hammers now have bosses for release trigger hooks to engage forged as a part of the hammers. On a M-32 with releases, the hammers had to be drilled so a pin could be installed for that purpose and the hammers were known to fracture where the holes were drilled. Finally, K-80s now employ coil sear springs instead of the Model 32’s more fragile link-type sear springs.

    Several options available on the K-80 were not offered on the M-32. Some of them are factory adjustable stocks, choke tubes and an unsingle barrel. And the standard finish on K-80s is brushed nickel while M-32s were blued.

    Krieghoff also manufactures a single barrel trap gun, the KX-5, and a 20-gauge version of the K-80 that is appropriately named the K-20. Prior to the 2002 introduction of the KX-5, they offered its predecessor, the KS-5. That gun’s “mid-single” design is carried forth on the newer model. Additionally, their line of guns includes side-by-side shotguns and rifles, drillings and O/U shotguns and rifles primarily marketed in Europe. Today, the least expensive new Krieghoff trap gun is the KX-5 at $5,195. K-80s start at $8,695 for a standard grade O/U with fixed chokes but if your pockets have the required depth, ornate high-grade versions complete with heavily engraved metal parts, precious metal inlays and carved stocks can cost well in excess of $50,000.

    My tastes run toward the conservative, so my favorite higher-grade K-80 is the “signature” model, which featured the signature of Heinz Krieghoff, Dieter’s father who was instrumental in sculpting the direction of the company in the 1960s and ‘70s, inlaid in gold on the sides of the gun’s blued receiver, which was additionally highlighted by a fine gold outline around its perimeter. I don’t know if it is still there, but one of those guns used to be displayed in a glass case in Krieghoff International’s Ottsville showroom and I always had to remember to wipe the puddles of my drool from that case before leaving.

    Krieghoff doesn’t release new models or even new variants of existing models all that often, so when they do, those who follow guns of this type find it noteworthy. At the suggestion of top American trapshooters like Harlan Campbell Jr. and Phil Kiner, Krieghoff has added another version to the legendary K-80 line called the Trap Special. The new model’s primary purpose is to provide a trap gun with an adjustable rib on the over/under barrel as well as the unsingle. In fact, the entire rib system is new. The standard K-80 O/U barrel can be adjusted for point of impact (POI) of the under barrel by loosening the center hanger between the two barrel tubes, gently spreading the tubes apart (to move the POI higher) or together (to move it lower) and retightening the hanger. The standard unsingle barrel has an adjustable rib but instead of just moving in its hangers above the barrel tube like most such ribs, it is rigidly attached at the rear to the monobloc, so when the front of the rib is adjusted, the barrel tube is actually flexed.

    Because the Trap Special’s O/U barrel retains the POI adjustment feature for the under barrel while adding a higher adjustable rib, this Krieghoff design offers a whole new level of POI adjustment. As with all other adjustable-rib O/Us, the Trap Special’s rib can be used to adjust the POI of the barrels as a pair. But the under barrel adjustment feature allows that barrel to be adjusted to shoot lower, the same or higher than the over barrel, thus offering the skilled doubles shooter the ability to fully fine-tune the POI of both barrels. Additionally, the Trap Special’s unsingle barrel no longer flexes; instead, its higher rib “floats” in front and rear hangers.

    The reasons for Krieghoff’s release of the Trap Special were many and certainly included remaining competitive in the market, as at least one other fine gun maker and direct Krieghoff competitor, Perazzi, offers trap guns with similar rib designs (but lack the individual adjustability of the O/U barrels). Some of the other reasons, as listed for me by Mr. Krieghoff in an email, are:
    • A response to the trend toward higher-shooting guns. This requires a rib with more pitch, which means it must be higher in the back and higher all around. In its highest setting, the rib is designed to deliver a POI of a full pattern (100%) high. All guns are shipped with the ribs adjusted for a 70/30 POI.
    • To many shooters, a high post rib has the benefit of less felt recoil. Additionally, a shooter can mount the gun with their head more straight up with less strain to the neck.
    • In theory, higher ribs can provide improved target acquisition, especially for those shooters who hold a very high gun.

    The gun I used for this evaluation belongs to a friend of mine, Bill Shupert of Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania. Aside from being a good friend, Bill is a true American war hero. He was a U.S. Navy reconnaissance specialist during WWII and is credited with numerous enemy kills and was himself wounded during battle. Among his many medals are a Purple Heart and the Bronze Star. He is a native of the Vandalia, Ohio area and is a very proud graduate of THE Ohio State University (but we Pennsylvanians still tolerate him during the college football season). In fact, when Bill was a little boy, his older brother would drop him off at the Grand American on his way to work every morning and gave him a quarter. That quarter would buy young Bill a hot dog, a soft drink and a snack of some kind and he would spend the entire day watching the shooting until his brother returned to pick him up on his way home. Not long ago, Bill was one of this area’s finest trapshooters but at age 79, his reflexes and eyesight aren’t what they used to be and the tremors of Parkinson’s contribute to shooting now being a good days, bad days thing.

    The Shuperts not only are a trapshooting family, they are also a Krieghoff family. Bill’s wife, Kathy, shoots a Model 32 Vandalia Rib combo with K-80 wood, hammers, trigger and other internal parts while 16 year-old son Billy, with whom they were blessed late in life, is moving into his mom’s former gun, a K-80 Super Scroll unsingle combo.

    Bill has worked for his only employer for 55 years. He is the senior vice-president of the Donegal Mutual Insurance Company, headquartered in nearby Marietta, PA, and still goes in to the office four days each week. Although he couldn’t bring himself to do it when the time came, he was anticipating retiring on January first and, last fall, decided to buy himself a retirement gift. His choice was not a gold watch, but the engraved K-80 Trap Special, also a Super Scroll grade, on these pages.

    For the numbers lovers, I submit the following required statistics. I weighed the gun on our club’s digital meat scale (clubs with an officer who owns a restaurant equipment franchise have such things) and found it to weigh 9.13 pounds with its 34-inch unsingle barrel and 9.32 pounds with the 32-inch O/U barrel. Those weights surprised me and it must be a credit to the gun’s balance that it feels significantly lighter. I had the pleasure of shooting it the first week Bill owned it and found it to have the lowest amount of felt recoil of any break-open trap gun I’d ever shot. The gun came with eight choke tubes of the standard Krieghoff style which Bill upgraded to their extended titanium variety, a $400 option. When the choke tubes’ outlet diameters are subtracted from the unsingle barrel’s .732” bore diameter, they yield the following constrictions: K00 (cylinder) .000”, K0 (skeet) .005”, K1 (improved cylinder) .010”, K1+ (light modified) .015”, K2 (modified) .020”, K2+ (light improved modified) .025”, K3 (improved modified) .030”, K4 (full) .035” and K5 (super full) .040”. The O/U barrels both had bore diameters of .731, so each tube would yield .001” less constriction.

    The standard-equipment factory adjustable stock has a length of pull of 14-3/8” and the drop at Monte Carlo comb can be adjusted between 1-1/4” and 1-5/8”. Additionally, the comb can be adjusted for offset up to 1/4" either way from center. Most Krieghoff adjustable-comb stocks with which I’ve had experience had no cast or offset and the one on this Trap Special was no exception. However, both adjustable and non-adjustable stocks with cast or offset are available and should you select a non-adjustable K-80 stock you like, Krieghoff International can retrofit its adjustable comb system to it. Also, a couple of optional forearm profiles are offered to provide a better fit for very small or large hands. The gun’s forearm latch lever is located in the bottom of the forearm and is wisely recessed into the wood to prevent uncomfortable contact with the shooter’s skin and those metal parts, which can become very hot while shooting, especially during a doubles event on a warm day.

    The K-80 receiver offers several very welcome features. As stated earlier, the trigger can be adjusted for fore-aft position via the rear screw in the trigger itself while the front screw locks the barrel selector that protrudes downward just in front of the trigger. That’s very handy on an unsingle trap gun, because regardless of whether the unsingle or O/U barrel is being used, the lower barrel will always be fired first and locking the barrel selector prevents it from being inadvertently changed by the owner or anyone else who might handle the gun. The safety is located on the top tang and includes a release button that must be depressed before the safety control can be moved, thus reducing incidents of unwanted engagement. Additionally, the safety can be locked in the “off” position with a screw in the left side of the upper tang, which is accessible when the stock is removed. As the photos of this Trap Special’s receiver show, it is equipped with double release triggers fitted by Allem’s Guncraft of Zionsville, Pennsylvania (http://www.allemsguncraft.com/). Release triggers are also available from Krieghoff International.

    The two rounded levers protruding from the lower front of the receiver engage in slots in the back of the forearm iron and when the barrel is rotated downward, they in turn pull the twin cocking rods on the floor of the receiver forward. Those rods are connected to the bottoms of the hammers and when pulled forward, cock the hammers. The firing pins are contained in a block mounted in the receiver’s breech and the lock time (the time between when the hammer is released and the firing pin strikes the cartridge’s primer) is one of the industry’s fastest.

    My only gripe with Krieghoff’s trap guns centers around their long-time choice of recoil pads and this gun is no exception. The quality and recoil absorption of Pachmayr pads is above question; however the “tractor tread” (my term) surface that bears against your shoulder results in tender skin after a day of shooting in just a shirt, as I usually do in warm weather. Of course, that surface does insure a more positive purchase between the pad and the shoulder, thus preventing the gun from slipping out of place while being swing after a target, and I’m sure that is the very reason Krieghoff employs it.

    Adjustment of the rib is very simple. The lock screw in the rear of the rib must be loosened followed by the one in the front end of the rib. Doing so permits the knurled wheel to be rotated, which in turn raises or lowers the rib, and the rib to pivot freely at the rear. Index lines on the adjuster provide a very visible indicator of how much rib movement has been achieved and permits repeated adjustments to a given setting that has proven itself satisfactory. Because the new, higher rib of the Trap Special is obviously larger in mass than the standard K-80 unsingle rib, it and the false upper barrel stub are made of aluminum to prevent the barrel assembly from becoming excessively heavy. Of course, inventive folks who prefer more weight can easily add some by either removing and reinstalling the snap cap to insert weight in the false barrel or by simply applying lead tape to the bottom of the false barrel and the top of the under barrel.

    The gun comes in a fitted airline-safe aluminum case by Americase that is noticeably thicker than normal Krieghoff cases to provide the required room for the higher ribs. The case has a rich burgundy interior that is complimented by “K-80 Trap Special” embroidered on the inside of the lid in gold.

    The gun’s stock was a little too long for me (it will have been shortened to fit Bill by the time you read this) and the POI was set a bit lower than what I’m accustomed to, but I shot it like that rather than change Bill’s settings and didn’t do too badly. Once I forced myself to cover targets with the bead, all but some hard rights (on which the stock length affected my swing) broke impressively with a K3 improved modified choke tube installed. I can only describe the shooting experience as very comfortable and easy – the recoil level was extremely low and I didn’t feel as though I had to wrestle with the gun at all.

    The K-80 Trap Special carries a list price of $15,285 and is presently available only as a 34”/32” combo with choke tubes. Other configurations may be offered in the future but Dieter Krieghoff advised me that that would only happen if sufficient interest in single barrel or O/U-only guns and fixed chokes exists. The test gun, in Super Scroll grade with the optional titanium choke tubes and double release triggers, carried a selling price just a few dollars shy of $19,000.

    Some people would say that a gun of that price SHOULD be nice. I don’t think those people would be disappointed.


    __________

    There is a somewhat sad conclusion to this fine gun's ownership. One of the side effects of drugs prescribed for Parkinson's sufferers is uncontrolled impulsive behavior and since both parties involved in this story have since passed away, I feel it will not be disrespectful to tell others that for reasons I never fully understood, Bill traded this nearly-$19,000 K-80 Trap Special almost even-up for a used Perazzi TM-1 after only owning it for about 18 months. I was told that the other party in the transaction immediately resold the K-80 for a handsome profit.

    And Bill didn't stop there. That Model 32 mentioned in the review of the K-80 TS that his wife Kathy shot was my gun, one I regretted selling as I broke my only two 200s and shot my way to the 27 with it. But impulse drove Bill to offer me $8,000 for it - thousands more than I paid for it - and I had just purchased one of the first KX-5s and wasn't shooting the Model 32, so I accepted his offer.

    A year or so before Bill's death, another shooting acquaintance of mine called to ask me some questions about the Model 32. When I asked why he wanted that information, he told me that he had just purchased it from Bill for $3,500.

    If you have a loved one afflicted with Parkinsons who has a nice collection of anything, consider this a warning.

    Ed
     
  20. Diamond Bruce

    Diamond Bruce Member

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
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    bullettheturtle_2010_23045.jpg

    A custom stock made all the differnce in the world. Tried a PFS stock and still had problems. By chance ran into a custom stock built for a TS with a right hand offset. With a couple of changes she finally started shooting where I wanted her.
     
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