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I just bought my first shotgun, a Remington 870 Express Magnum. It has a 28" vented barrel with mod choke. I have a few questions about using it for deer hunting and skeet shooting.

1. I've heard that I can't use rifled slugs in this type of barrel as it would destroy the choke or harm the barrel, is this true? If so, would a replacement barrel, such as a 20" Improved Cylinder with a Deer Rifle Sight (for 139.99, from Cabelas.com) be what it is that I need to buy? I would rather not have to spend over $150 for a new barrel for deer hunting.

2. Instead of buying a new barrel, could I just use buckshot instead for hunting deer? What is the spread with full choke and 00 buckshot at, say, 50 yards? At what range does buckshot spread too much and become useless? Should I even use a full choke? Is the difference between 04 buckshot and 00 buckshot the same as 7 bird shot and, say, 3 bird shot? (as in the 04 spreads further at 50 yards than 00)

3. What choke and ammunition would you recommend for skeet shooting.

I know that's quite a few questions, but I'm still a novice to the ..anatomy of a shotgun and using the correct choke/ammo for game.

I appreciate any input and thanks for your feedback. I'm taking it out to the field tomorrow to break it in; am using about 25 rounds of birdshot and 25 rounds of buckshot.

Thanks!!

EDIT: Just read about Foster slugs, I've never heard of them, are they the same as rifled slugs, just some people call them foster (i've never seen "foster" slugs in stores before ). Guess I can use foster slugs in my stock 28" vented barrel with mod choke?
 

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Sionis:... with mod choke....

1. I've heard that I can't use rifled slugs in this type of barrel as it would destroy the choke or harm the barrel, is this true?

OhShoot: No. Rifled slugs will be fine with modified choke or less. A lot of folks say they are safe enough with even full choke, but personally I wouldn't use them with more than modified. Certainly, any tighter than modified, and accuracy is less with rifled slugs. Matter of fact, if you wanted to test, if you could put in an improved cylinder or even plain cylinder choke tube, you might (or not) find that accuracy is a little better than with modified choke and rifled slugs.

2. Instead of buying a new barrel, could I just use buckshot instead for hunting deer? What is the spread with full choke and 00 buckshot at, say, 50 yards? At what range does buckshot spread too much and become useless?

Rule of thumb with buckshot is 1" spread for every yard. So you can see that a 50" spread at 50 yards ain't gonna put but one or two pellets into the deer at best (and who knows WHERE those pellets hit), and would be a poor choice.

Choke affects it somewhat of course, but with buckshot at 50 yards, still not a good choice.

EDIT: Just read about Foster slugs, I've never heard of them, are they the same as rifled slugs,

Yes, same.
 
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