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The_Honest_Pintail
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2021 5:55 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 14 Feb 2021
Posts: 4
Location: British Columbia

Would a 1957 Winchester model 12 16ga makes a good everyday duck gun? Itís a 28Ē full choke gun so bismuth is a must but Iím just wondering if that was a good year of manufacturing? Any info would be much appreciated thanks Matt
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skeettx
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2021 6:48 pm  Reply with quote
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Hello The_Honest_Pintail

WELCOME on your first posting.


It would make a great duck gun if you shoot it well.

No gun will be a good duck gun if you do not shoot it well.

But the gun itself has all the merits needed for waterfowl

Mike


Last edited by skeettx on Sun Feb 21, 2021 8:10 am; edited 1 time in total
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John Singer
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2021 9:20 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 03 Sep 2014
Posts: 340
Location: Rochester, MN

I duck hunt a great deal with 16 gauge guns.

I have a Savage 720 semi-auto that had a full choke. I reamed it to modified. I also have a Stevens 5100. I opened it's full choke barrel to modified, too.

I use hand loads of 7/8 oz #3 steel for most duck hunting. #4 steel works well for teal.

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707PS
PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2021 7:55 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 30 Jul 2018
Posts: 25
Location: Dayton Wa.

I think the model 12 would be great for you. I still have a 12 ga. Model 12 that my
Dad gave me in 1956. I like the forearm on the year you are thinking about. Just a little more to grab a hold of especially if your arms are average or a little shorter. I have a 1942 model 12 16 ga and made the change. Mike is right, it has to fit you, but I canít think of a thing you canít do to make it work
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The_Honest_Pintail
PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2021 8:40 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 14 Feb 2021
Posts: 4
Location: British Columbia

Thanks gentlemen for the replies. I have been shooting a 16ga for a few years now and will never go back to a 12ga for ducks. I have a Browning Sweet Sixteen that has been my main gun. My grandfather shot a Winchester model 12 16ga his whole life. Raved about it all the time, killed thousands of roosters and ducks with it. Well he passed away this last year and I have it. I ended up shooting twice this last season and fell in love with it. Iíd like to keep it in the safe and buy my own that was the reason for the post. Thanks Matt
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fourtrax
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2021 7:29 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Jun 2009
Posts: 817
Location: N. Shore, mn

What about shooting steel shot through a FULL choke??
That isn't a good idea.

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skeettx
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2021 8:09 am  Reply with quote
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The OP says that he will be using Bismuth.


Last edited by skeettx on Sun Feb 21, 2021 9:11 am; edited 1 time in total
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The_Honest_Pintail
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2021 9:04 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 14 Feb 2021
Posts: 4
Location: British Columbia

Thatís one of the questions I had. If I took a late manufacturing model 12 and got the barrel bored to light modified could i shoot steel through it? Or Iím I better off to leave it alone and buck up and just spend the money on bismuth?
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skeettx
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2021 9:11 am  Reply with quote
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Were it mine, I would re-work the choke
Mike

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Brewster11
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2021 12:06 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 08 Feb 2009
Posts: 861
Location: Western WA

In my opinion, the 16 ga is not appropriate for everyday waterfowl use. A 16 ga can and will drop waterfowl but so can a 20 ga or 28 ga for that matter. But in this day and age with non toxic shot requirements having a fraction of the density of lead, and general scarcity of game, there is no substitute for 3Ē 12 ga for waterfowl. Both in terms of payload and velocity the 12ga is vastly superior. For heavy loads suitable for waterfowl, the 16ga is handicapped in terms of max pressure and volumetric efficiency. Times have changed as well. The 16 ga is still an ideal gun for carrying in the field, but in a duck blind or standing against a tree in flooded timber, new lightweight 12 ga designs can do everything the 16 ga can, and MUCH better. To me the 16ga does not represent the best and most responsible use of our waterfowl resources. I carry a few bismuth shells for the occasional pond jump shot while in the field with a 16ga, but for everyday use for waterfowl as you indicated, 16ga is far from being the best choice.

V/R
B.
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John Singer
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 9:28 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 03 Sep 2014
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Location: Rochester, MN

The_Honest_Pintail wrote:
Thatís one of the questions I had. If I took a late manufacturing model 12 and got the barrel bored to light modified could i shoot steel through it? Or Iím I better off to leave it alone and buck up and just spend the money on bismuth?


It is very affordable to have the choke opened. Personally, I have little use for a full choke with the exception of turkey hunting.


Opening the choke to modified or light modified will allow you to use steel and you can still use bismuth.

I do not feel handicapped by my use of a 16 gauge when waterfowl hunting. .

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tramroad28
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 9:41 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 20 Jul 2011
Posts: 614
Location: Ohio..where ruffed grouse were

The_Honest_Pintail wrote:
Would a 1957 Winchester model 12 16ga makes a good everyday duck gun? Itís a 28Ē full choke gun so bismuth is a must but Iím just wondering if that was a good year of manufacturing? Any info would be much appreciated thanks Matt


Try the gun, for how you hunt waterfowl...first.
Then adjust, if necessary.

Or, follow a herd bull wherever it goes.
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WyoChukar
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 11:29 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 16 Jul 2015
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Location: Hudson,Wy

If you don't mind altering the gun and aren't worried about keeping it pristine, reaming the choke is a fine option...and yes you can use it as an everyday waterfowl gun. Personally, I prefer the reaming option since it costs very little and the ability to use steel vs. bismuth will pay for the work in a few boxes worth of ammo. Steel shot is also generally easier to come by than bismuth, a real concern these days.

Will bismuth kill birds further? In my experience, I would not expect any great difference...it certainly won't turn a 16 ga. into a 12 ga. but the stuff does work well if you choose that route.

I have taken an awful lot of ducks and geese with 16 ga doubles in recent years. I use #2 steel for geese, #3 or 4 for mallard size ducks and #6 or 7 for teal. A surprising number of mallards have fallen cleanly to the #6 loads when my main quarry was teal (we can hunt mallards all season, teal are different story).

Realistically, the 16 is a good duck and goose gun out to 50 yards, provided you pick proper choke an pellet size. Light mod or mod is a good choice, imp. mod if you intend to do most of your shooting at 40-50 yards.

Basically, it's a personal choice. When you are out in the marsh, knowing that the gun in your hands belonged to your dad, and that it is about to do for you what it did for your dad...should bring a smile to your face and a deeper satisfaction in your heart.

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MaximumSmoke
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 1:33 pm  Reply with quote
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Here are a couple of photos covering two days of waterfowling in the fall of 2020:



That's an older 1919 vintage Model 12 I used. I had it opened up to .007" constriction (about IC). This was originally a short-chambered gun (2 9/16") and I have done the conversion to 2 3/4 inch. I shot these birds with 1 1/8 ounce and 1 ounce loads of HeviShot 6's and 4's.

At normal ranges (within 35 yards) the 16 with just about any non-tox shot works just fine -- I think it is safe to say the 16 would be much more effective than a 20 with non-tox -- it gets to be a bore-size to shot size ratio as well as a shot column length and pellet count thing. If you are willing to shoot high density shot (the various tungsten alloys and concoctions) you can really reach out, and your killing effectiveness will likely only be limited by your ability to put the pattern on the target.

The advice about needing a 3" 12 gauge for waterfowl is good if you're using steel shot at long ranges. However, using steel at ranges over about 40 yards is frequently a "crippler" for most shooters, I don't care how much shot your shell holds -- it's a downfield pellet energy thing, and attempts to use larger shot (larger than 2 steel for ducks and larger than BBB or T for large geese) to retain downfield energy on long shots results in fewer pellets on target, reducing chances of a clean kill. If waterfowl are taken within 35 yards, as most are, I like steel 3's and 4's for ducks and geese, and 2 3/4 inch loads in the 12 are just fine.

The_Honest_Pintail -- You also asked if a '57 vintage Model 12 would be "a good year" for the Model 12. As Model 12's go, all years are good; one year is just as stout as the next even if you shoot 2 3/4 inch shells in the early (before 1928) Model 12 sixteen and twenty gauge guns. The only thing that changed over the years was the chamber length and the style of the wood. You will have trouble ejecting 2 3/4 inch hulls from the short chambered early Model 1912's and Model 12's though, so for functionality in those cases it is good to do the mod -- lengthen the chamber (I also advise easing the forcing cone if you're going to shoot ultra-hard non-tox like steel and tungsten alloys), and doctor the ejection port (move the front edge forward about .060" to .080" and taper the inside edge forward to the chamber opening). Your '57 will not need this treatment, of course. By the way, I always see folks talk about 2 1/2 inch chambers in the 16 gauge Model 12. They never were. At the start (up through about 1927), the 16's had 2 9/16" chambers and the 20's had 2 1/2", as those were the nominal standard lengths for the shells of those gauges in those days. The 12 gauge Model 12's were always 2 3/4 inchers, except for the 3-inch Duck Gun version. The 28's came later (1934 I think) and were 2 7/8 inch, again the same as the nominal hull length in those days. They went to 2 3/4 some time in the '50's -- but I digress.

The old Model 12 in the photo is my "do everything" gun. I call it my "Bottom of the Duckboat Special", though I've never had it in a duck boat -- I'm a pass shooter, waterfowl-wise. This gun isn't pretty, but in it, I can shoot any shot and any load you can stuff into a 16 gauge hull, without damage to the gun. With modern reloading components, you don't need much choke, and this gun is plenty good with lead loads for upland birds, and I mean sharptails, too. One can still load it for decently long ranges with lead shot if need be. I haven't had to do anything special for that yet. The gun works great on the skeet field, and in sporting clays it is adequately choked for almost all shots, except the rare really long ones. The gun is as rugged as it looks and does not need to be babied.

I strongly advise you to try a 16 gauge of any manufacture for waterfowl. It isn't a 20 or a 28 Laughing Wink
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MaximumSmoke
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 4:54 pm  Reply with quote
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I get a kick out of it when someone uses the term "volumetric efficiency" connected to guns, shotguns in particular. Volumetric efficiency is all about pumping efficiency - the ability of a pump, particularly a reciprocating pump, such as a compressor or an internal combustion engine to fill itself relative to it's nominal geometrical capacity or deliver per stroke relative to the same. It does not apply to guns. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volumetric_efficiency
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