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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all, I'm new to your forum and looking for some advice... I've shot trap for about 4 years, 3-4 times per year. I'm currently averaging 21 out of 25 using a Mossberg 26" pump. I'm thinking that with a more suitable gun, some coaching and more practice, I might be able to compete. The wife says I can buy a gun, but she's certainly thinking more along the lines of my $200 Mossberg. So, that said, I'm looking for a gun under $1000 that will help bring me to the next level.

The pro shop at the local range has a used Browning Citori (1976,pre-type 1). It looks and feels barely used but it is a "sporting" model with fixed chokes and has a cracked but repaired butt stock. They're asking $550. I know I can have a Wenig stock made for about another $150. Would this be a good move?

I really like the simplicity and ease of maintenance with over and unders and pumps, but I'm not adverse to automatics. Would I be better off buying a used Beretta 391?

I've heard many people swear by their Remington 870, would that be much of an upgrade from my Mossberg?

Sorry for the long first post, and thanks in advance for any advice.

John Menke
 

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John: First of all the "fixed chokes" on this Citori limits you in shooting all the clay target disciplines; if you so wish. It surely is not a dedicated trap gun if it is a "sporting" model. (What length are the barrels)?? Although $550 is not a budget breaker; I think you might be better off trying out a few more guns. Adding a few more $$ and buying a used 391, (complete with choke tubes) might be a better choice. Also, having Wenig make a stock for $150 seems like a tall order indeed. You will get all kinds of opinions on this. (To include mine). The Beretta 391 is a good solid gun that will give you a lot of service with little maintenance. That being said, shoot several different guns and get the feel as to what you like. Then keep your eyes open for a good used gun. (new guns are like cars, they depreciate). Good luck. Ed
 

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I think you got great advice thus far. Don't rule out a "made up" (reconfigured, not original) Winchester Model 12 in trap configuration. Find some Model 12 shooter/old timer at a trapclub to advise you. Many of those old guns are junky and overpriced now. But if you get a good one...

Also, maybe you will be able to find a used BT-99. Look for a 34 inch barrel.

Or a Remington 870 Comp.; the old single shot model that reduces recoil. Kinda rare now.
 

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A used Beretta 391 Urika Parallel Target model with a 30 inch barrel IMHO, offers the best value for your bucks and is a great gun to start with. jm
 

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John.Based on the money yu want to spend that 11-87 is a good buy I have owned an 1100 the 11-87 of thirty years ago and it's been wonderful. My is form the 70's and has fixed choke tubes. I own foru differnt barrels fpor the gun and will never sell it.
 

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Spot on advice so far. Consider what you want to be shoot first of all. If you are going to stick strictly with trap, a pump gun is strongly in the running. Model 12's are the coolest, and retain value well. If you plan to branch out to skeet or sporting, a o/u or auto would be a better choice. I think your price point will limit your choices in the o/u market. You will have lots of options with used autos however, and some money left over to shoot more than 4 times a year. I now own and have owned all of them. 1100-11/87's GREAT. Fast and easy to clean. Balance nicely with the steel receiver, parts grow on trees, extra barrels-wood-everything easy to get. The 391's do have an outstanding gas system. You can get away with cleaning them once a season, and that's good because they are a real pain to clean. The alloy receiver is much lighter and many shooters end up adding weight to the stock and magazine to get the weight up and to balance the gun better. Best thing to do, go to your club and shoot as many different guns as you can borrow. Everybodys taste is different as far as what feels good. Two more things: A Wenig for 150? send me two.And MIA's 11-87 looks pretty sweet-nice wood.
Best of luck in your search, and SHOOT MORE! KS
 

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If you are handy, you can get a Wenig semi inlet stock under 200.00. fit and finished xtra $$ unless you do it yourself. I personally would get a 1100/1187 and add adjustable comb to start. Or save a tad longer and get a O/U for 1500/2000 range. I found my XT with Americase and several chokes for 1500.00 love it. First thing you must do though........TRY as MANY guns as you can. You will in short time weed out the guns that just do not do it for you. Beretta,benelli all seemed a bit light to me. 34" barrels seemed way to long. Check JoelEtchenguns.com has had some great deals both new and used on all guns. Silverdollarfirearms.com is another
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you all for the advice. I'm definately planning to shoot MUCH more, and the range where I want to shoot during the week has demo guns. So I think I'm going to try a few more before deciding.

MIA, thanks for the offer on the 1187, I'm taking it under close consideration. I'll see if I can demo one this week.

Are the 1100s and 1187s pretty much equal?

Thanks again

John Menke
 

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Buy a used gun and shoot it before you buy it. If it is comfortable to shoot, reliable, and breaks a lot of birds, you can consider buying it. HMB
 

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If you are only shooting 16 yard and handicap trap (singles), try looking for a good used Browning BT-99. It's a very durable design. Here are a couple links.

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=116218529

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=116461420

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=116489577
 

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Your $1,000 budget puts you in the range of several good trap guns. Pumps like the 870 Remington can be competitve and they have very good service lives with minimal maintenace problems. The only down side is recoil and they are a bit of a handicap in the game of doubles.

The 1100 or 1187 Remingtons are also great choices as they tame recoil well and generally shoot where they are supposed to. The down side of these guns is that you need to maintain thier operating systems more so than you would with a pump or O/U. This isn't a show stopper though and there have been many good threads on this forum on how to deal with those chores.

At the top end of your budget is the 391 Beretta which is a very good quality gas operated autoloader that I believe to be more reliable than the 1100/1187 Remington guns and easier to maintain. (many guys will dispute this)

After you get serious about the sport then you can consider more expensive guns. By that time you will have had the opportunity to try several other guns and get an idea of what is available.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thank you for the continued advice. I don't think I would want to go with a BT-99, because I may want to try doubles eventually. Right now I shoot singles from 16yds.

Barry, I'm in Southern California. I have checked into a couple of ffl dealers here, if you don't mind shipping. Where are you located? Is it a trap model? Can you post or send me pics? How might this gun compare to MIA's 11-87 he's selling (above)?

Thanks again,

John Menke
 

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I vote for a tricked out 870 for singles/caps. If you need to shoot the doubles, my first choice is a 391 parallel trap, then 1100/11-87. I recently shot a 870 trap with the Graco device...wholly crap..recoil felt like a 410ga! TB's can be found for $350-$500. range and I much prefer the older ones (before 2000). What ever you go with, make sure it FITS you.
 

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Yes, the Remington 1100 and 11-87 are the same gun, essentially equal. You're doing really well, for shooting a 26" Mossy pump. I think you're wise to try all the demo guns. Eventually the right action type & model for you will become apparent. You should get a trap gun, not a field gun, and I agree with your passing on the BT-99 single for now. A used Rem 870 Trap with 28-30" barrel would be a good choice, quite a bit cheaper than a used 1100. I started with an 870 Trap, and loved it. But if you did that, then later still wanted an 1100 or Citori Trap, you'd have wasted some money. Phil E
 
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