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I am certain this has been asked multiple times and I have searched the forum with no luck finding a thread.
Standard questions of where to begin. What are the women friendly shotguns?

Wife 5'1'' 120lbs, primarily I want to train her to hunt with me and our 11yo son (no experience either). Hunting ducks, quail, pheasant and doves primarily. Our club has S,T,SC, and FS that I hope to use to train them to hunt.

I have an 1100 LT20 Magnum, 1100 fixed Mod, Rem VersaMax Waterfowl Pro, and a Rem VersaMax Comp Tactical in the safe.

I don't want them to have a bad experience and not return. I know this may sound crazy but I'm thinking to have the wife shoot the Competition Tactical. The barrel length is 22". It has a comb inserts where I can raise her head higher. I've read women need a shotgun more fitted to their design- is this good start? I understand many of you will roll your eyes with having a 22" gun and being "tactical"- the extended tube will not be attached. But is this a decent place to start?

Or, do I just pull out the check book and have her go to a professional fitter and buy a gun after the fitting- "buy once, cry once"?

I'm considering starting the 11yo on the LT20 that was primarily intended for the wife who never got a chance to shoot it. Over an hour drive one-way to the nearest clubs.
 

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Stock length & shape are far more critical than the barrel length. Weight is also a factor to consider. Women definitely need a different fit than a man.
If you really want her to hunt with you, do it right the 1st time. Trying to recover from a bad experience is very difficult. Good luck.

Maddad
 

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I would involve your wife as much as possible in the process of choosing her gun.
It sounds like she needs a field shotgun as that is the primary focus.

Get her something that fits and she likes and is comfortable with.
Something she can carry all day and doesn't beat her up.
There are some youth models or Reduced Length (RL) versions of popular hunting shotguns.
You could also have a gun cut down to fit her.

Have her shoot some practice clays whatever game appeals to her.
Familiarity with the gun and breaking clays will help her in the field.

Its All Good
West
 

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If you are in the market to make the purchase of a new gun I would recommend taking a look at the Beretta line of the A400 and even the Explorer versions with the kick off option. These guns are relatively light weight and with the recoil kick off system they are a pleasure to shoot. I think but am not positive that there may also be an option for a reduced length stock option. I did purchase the Explorer for my daughter because that particular setup was available in left hand model and it has the kick off option and she really enjoys shooting it. Just my $.02 worth.
 

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"I want to train her to hunt with me and our 11yo son"

Possibly that was just poorly worded, or is your wife really interested in being "trained"?
If she is genuinely interested in participating, find another women instructor to start the process, and the gun choosing. As her confidence builds, you might THEN introduced some carefully chosen words of advice.
Do this right and you and your son might have a shooting partner for life; done wrong, it's over.
And please be sure that her eye dominance issues are addressed.
 

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I just recently walked my daughter through the process of finding the gun she wanted.
Here is my .02 cents worth of advice.
Make sure she has an interest to hunt/shoot to begin with. Go some place that has a wide range of guns and let her find what she likes. Even better if there are some different types of guns she can shoot. There are some guns available that are designed with women in mind. My daughter didn't find one she liked in her price range.
DO NOT be pushy, you can explain differences but be very clear and make sure she knows it is her decision. Buy her shells that will be lighter shooting so she won't have a bad experience and potentially be scared away by shooting heavy loads and going home in pain or bruised. Stick to light 1oz or maybe even 7/8 oz loads at least until she decides she wants to try something else. Don't fall into the 20g is softer shooting BS either. Light 12g loads are very similar in felt recoil.
If the goal is shooting clays for hunting practice, that's great but stick to a lower rib gun with a 50/50 point of impact (poi) don't get a gun that shoots higher than 60/40 and that may be pushing it for some uses.
Look at field guns or sporting clays style guns.
My daughter ended up with a Browning Citori CXS Micro 12g with 26" barrels. Great gun and great value. You can always have adjustability added to give her a more customized fit. Don't waste big money on paying a fitter until she has a consistent gun mount and a gun with a very close fitting length of pull at a minimum.

What do you plan to hunt?
Where are you located? Maybe someone here is close enough to recommend where to look or may let her take a gun for a test drive
 

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Gu
I just recently walked my daughter through the process of finding the gun she wanted.
Here is my .02 cents worth of advice.
Make sure she has an interest to hunt/shoot to begin with. Go some place that has a wide range of guns and let her find what she likes. Even better if there are some different types of guns she can shoot. There are some guns available that are designed with women in mind. My daughter didn't find one she liked in her price range.
DO NOT be pushy, you can explain differences but be very clear and make sure she knows it is her decision. Buy her shells that will be lighter shooting so she won't have a bad experience and potentially be scared away by shooting heavy loads and going home in pain or bruised. Stick to light 1oz or maybe even 7/8 oz loads at least until she decides she wants to try something else. Don't fall into the 20g is softer shooting BS either. Light 12g loads are very similar in felt recoil.
If the goal is shooting clays for hunting practice, that's great but stick to a lower rib gun with a 50/50 point of impact (poi) don't get a gun that shoots higher than 60/40 and that may be pushing it for some uses.
Look at field guns or sporting clays style guns.
My daughter ended up with a Browning Citori CXS Micro 12g with 26" barrels. Great gun and great value. You can always have adjustability added to give her a more customized fit. Don't waste big money on paying a fitter until she has a consistent gun mount and a gun with a very close fitting length of pull at a minimum.

What do you plan to hunt?
Where are you located? Maybe someone here is close enough to recommend where to look or may let her take a gun for a test drive
Guerini and Fab Arms make a number of guns designed specifically for women.
 

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Gu

Guerini and Fab Arms make a number of guns designed specifically for women.
Yep my daughter looked at a couple from Guerini and Fab Arms, she fou d a couple she liked but they were out of the price range of a college student. I don't think she will be disappointed with the CXS...even if I think she should send the stock to Tron for an even better fit
 

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I am certain this has been asked multiple times and I have searched the forum with no luck finding a thread.
Standard questions of where to begin. What are the women friendly shotguns?

Wife 5'1'' 120lbs, primarily I want to train her to hunt with me and our 11yo son (no experience either). Hunting ducks, quail, pheasant and doves primarily. Our club has S,T,SC, and FS that I hope to use to train them to hunt.

I have an 1100 LT20 Magnum, 1100 fixed Mod, Rem VersaMax Waterfowl Pro, and a Rem VersaMax Comp Tactical in the safe.

I don't want them to have a bad experience and not return. I know this may sound crazy but I'm thinking to have the wife shoot the Competition Tactical. The barrel length is 22". It has a comb inserts where I can raise her head higher. I've read women need a shotgun more fitted to their design- is this good start? I understand many of you will roll your eyes with having a 22" gun and being "tactical"- the extended tube will not be attached. But is this a decent place to start?

Or, do I just pull out the check book and have her go to a professional fitter and buy a gun after the fitting- "buy once, cry once"?

I'm considering starting the 11yo on the LT20 that was primarily intended for the wife who never got a chance to shoot it. Over an hour drive one-way to the nearest clubs.
Don't be reluctant to shorten the stock on the 1100,or buy a shorter one for your son. 11 year olds vary in strength so let him look at the weight to see what he can handle. Then buy light loads for both of them to start with. Ask on here if you need help with what is a light load, don't assume you will get good advice,if any,at the local big box store on the proper load for a beginner. Keep it fun for both of them.
 

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Women need a lighter shotgun. One that does not recoil very much as well. This combination is impossible to get. A Remington 1100 automatic is a good shotgun and is on the lighter than a O/U type of shotgun. Combine this shotgun with a Jack West stock that has all the adjustments built into it, with the correct LOP and your good to go. You can even a recoil reducer built into the stock, if she feels she needs more recoil reduction?

You also have the Beretta line of Gas-operated Auto's as well. Problem is you have to cut the wood on these guns. You kill the value of the firearm this way. There are no aftermarket stocks available for this guns. Then after you cut the stock, you gamble if she will even like it? These shotguns require less maintenance than the Remington 1100's, which is a plus.

Then you can buy here a O/U shotgun. For 2 grand you have two choices. The Beretta Silver Pig. or Browning's CX line of shotguns. You can buy a PFS stock for both of these shotguns. IMO it would be the best option for a women. They are totally adjustable. No need for gunsmiths. You do not hurt the value of your O/U shotgun by cutting down the stock. You can sell the PFS stock separately if you ever want to sell off the shotgun and your out of pocket is min. when its time to sell off the shotgun. Of course your total cost to get going is much higher than the Auto's. Just over 3 grand for the shotgun and PFS stock now. Total cost for a new 1100 is about a grand. A new Beretta 300 is under a grand. A new Beretta 400 auto is about 1,600 to 1,800 bucks depending on model. There Multi-target model runs about 2,700 bucks though. These prices are just ballpark figures. IMO the PFS stock if perfect for your 11 yr. old son and for your wife as well. They are totally adjustable and reduce recoil as well. You should be able to buy a used one for about 800 bucks. A new one was about 1,200 bucks. Not sure of current prices now. Vern no longer owns the rights to the PFS. The Fabarm auto shotgun has a lot mixed reviews. Some good, some real bad. So I left them out of this discussion on purpose!!!

These are your 3 basic choices. As mentioned let her decide which way she wants to go!!! You can go used to save a few bucks if you like. First she has to try as many shotguns as she can. This way she'll know what make and model she wants before you buy. The cheapest shotgun is the one you only have to buy "Once"!!! Good Luck on your Journey. break em all Jeff
 

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For lifelong success and everyone's happiness, you need to adjust your way of thinking....
ALL the guns are to be considered OURS. There is no MINE or YOURS.

SAY WHAT?
I don't think so. In large part most of what I own is fair game to my wife. But my tools, guns and racecar are off limits
 

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You also have the Beretta line of Gas-operated Auto's as well. Problem is you have to cut the wood on these guns. You kill the value of the firearm this way. There are no aftermarket stocks available for this guns. Then after you cut the stock, you gamble if she will even like it? These shotguns require less maintenance than the Remington 1100's, which is a plus.
Beretta makes a reduced length A400 with a 13.5" length of pull factory stock with the kickoff system installed. No stock cutting necessary. I had a tough time finding the right gun for my 5'1", 100 pound daughter. The reduced length A400 Parallel Target was the answer. I did however have to add an adjustable comb which was not a factory option. This setup comes with a 28" barrel.

I am an 1100 fan. Have been my whole life. If I could have made the 1100 with a Jack West fit her (own several 1100s and a Jack West stock), we would probably have gone that route. The A400 is just a much better fitting solution for someone her size. She shoots 300 targets a day without a problem. Recoil after fitting is not an issue.

Good luck!
 

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Beretta makes a reduced length A400 with a 13.5" length of pull factory stock with the kickoff system installed.
That's good to know. Thanks for the heads up.

However I am curious. How come your daughter did not go with the 1100 with a Jack West Stock for about half the cash out of pocket? Was it because the JW stock did not fit her properly? Or did she just like the Beretta 400 better? If the JW stock did not fit her. Why did it not fit her? Thanks for your input in advance. break em all jeff
 

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That's good to know. Thanks for the heads up.

However I am curious. How come your daughter did not go with the 1100 with a Jack West Stock for about half the cash out of pocket? Was it because the JW stock did not fit her properly? Or did she just like the Beretta 400 better? If the JW stock did not fit her. Why did it not fit her? Thanks for your input in advance. break em all jeff
The overall weight of the A400 and the distribution of the weight was much easier for her to handle. 1100s have always been a bit front end heavy. I probably could have solved that with a shorter barrel than the 30" trap barrel, but the A400 was just a better fit. Another interesting difference with the A400 was that the gun had a noticeably higher point of impact right out of the box than the 1100 does, and my daughter shot it really well. I am not sure that would be a good thing for some people, but it worked really well for her. I found a demo gun for around $1400 that she picked up and it just worked.
 

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I probably could have solved that with a shorter barrel than the 30" trap barrel,
Yes, that and using an older Light Contour barreled 1100 from the good ole days. Would allow a weaker person to enjoy shooting it more, as well. I've heard tale that the newer 1100's are a bit barrel heavy.

Glad to hear your daughter likes the 400 better. Its what works for each person as well. But, if Our OP wants or has a older 1100 and just wants to buy her a JW Stock for it. He should be little out of pocket cash in today's world. These older 1100's are very good, and are a bit lighter than today's newer shotguns. Even though they all have fixed chokes in them. Of course there is very little glitter for your young children to get excited about in these older shotguns. LOL. break em all Jeff
 

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Yes, that and using an older Light Contour barreled 1100 from the good ole days. Would allow a weaker person to enjoy shooting it more, as well. I've heard tale that the newer 1100's are a bit barrel heavy.

Glad to hear your daughter likes the 400 better. Its what works for each person as well. But, if Our OP wants or has a older 1100 and just wants to buy her a JW Stock for it. He should be little out of pocket cash in today's world. These older 1100's are very good, and are a bit lighter than today's newer shotguns. Even though they all have fixed chokes in them. Of course there is very little glitter for your young children to get excited about in these older shotguns. LOL. break em all Jeff
I completely agree with you. If an 1100 works, so much the better. I shot a ton of rounds through one as a kid. I have, and always will have my old TA Trap in my safe. Not to mention that I can tear down an 1100 and put it back together with my eyes closed. A400 not so much..
 
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