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  1. Hi Andrew, I didn’t see that clearly, I presume your gun is a 16 guage then? Either way the star marks indicate the choke constriction when proofed.
  2. The lead figure quoted by Ely is the mathematical figure for a bird crossing directly across 180 degrees to the gun . Whatever method is used to obtain that lead does not alter the distance, only our perception of the distance.
  3. Hi Andrew, the photos don’t show all the information. Looking at the 1200 bar figure I would expect the gun to be 3” /76mm chambers. It looks as if there is a single star mark on the left barrel and 3 stars on the right barrel which indicate full choke in the left & half choke in the right barrel. Half choke is the recommended maximum for steel shot, so the left barrel would be to tightly choked for steel shot. To avoid any doubt I would take the gun to a proper gunsmith who can measure the choke constriction in the barrels for confirmation. If you need the chokes opened out it’s not that expensive, and a lot safer than risking your gun and more importantly yourself.
  4. Hi Shotkam, I have found lots of good information on ballistics , patterns et all in the Ely Hawk Shooters Diary. They state that their std velocity cartridges have a nominal observed velocity measured at 20 yd’s from the muzzle of 1070ft per sec. Their HV cartridges have 1120ft per sec. And show the difference in lead that would have on a crossing pheasant at 40yds . Bingo! And the answer is a 45yd crosser with std velocity requires 9’ 6” of lead, using their HV cartridges the lead required is 9’1”. That’s 5” difference on a lead of over 9’. In practise no one would be able to tell the difference.
  5. Hi Shotkam, I understand your enthusiasm to find the best combinations of cartridge & choke for your gun. I shoot Miroku MK 60 High Pheasant 20 gauge for most of my game days, these are fixed choke. Originally bored full & 3/4 which was way over the top for my shooting so I sent them to Teague and had them bored to 1/2 & 1/4 which I thought the best compromise . I decided to pattern the guns with different cartridges to see what looked best. No one so far has mentioned pattern quality , this has a bigger impact on actual results than shot count alone within the 30” circle. Patterns can be assessed by the number of 5” voids in the circle. I found was that there were quite a difference in pattern quality/ density amongst cartridge brands especially with the 1/4 choke . All the patterns were shot at 30yds as the pattern range stops there . Using RC semi magnum 5’s 32grm plastic wad the patterns were very open and would not be consistent. I tried Gamebore Black gold 28grm 6’s fibre wad, these were better. Best of all we’re the RC Sipe 28grm 6’s ( uk 51/2 ) which were very good quality and worked well in both chokes. Almost identical but slightly denser patterns were achieved with ELY VIP 28grm no 6’s fibre. That was 4 seasons back and I have been very impressed with the Sipes & VIP’s performance in the field. Confidence is a great thing when shooting. Good luck with your search.
  6. Pigeons are mystical beings! I have observed the same thing several times . I think that old rape stubbles can have a lot of chickweed & other plants coming through if they have not been sprayed off. Pigeons love those sweet young leaves . An old friend of mine told me of a field of stubble that had been left in Fen shoot he managed where the weeds were coming through, two guns shot nearly 400 before they run out of cartridges!
  7. Hi Marshman, you make several interesting points . The pigeon population continues to rise , but the large reduction of oilseed rape/winter food is starting to have an effect in some areas . They are costing the farmers millions in damaged crops nationwide. It still amazes me that the view expressed by many farmers “ there not doing any harm” when they are stubbling or working a fresh drilling. It’s a failed military strategy to feed the enemy in the summer so they can hit you harder in the winter! I had exactly that problem yesterday when canvassing a local farmer. From now on I will make the point to farmers that every pigeon killed is one less to feed, breed and to lead it’s flockmates back to their fields. If they were a plague of rats in the grain store they would do something pretty quick.
  8. Generally speaking I would always place the magnet up wind of the decoys so that the birds can see the decoys clearly and have space/ time to come into them before the spinning magnet. For example in a cross wind situation I would place the magnet on a line 20-25 yds out from the hide and about 30/ 35 yd’s to the upwind side . The main pattern of decoys would be on the 20-25 yd line with a clear gap that the birds can fly into and land before the magnet. In a situation with the wind directly from behind I would place the decoys in 2 rough groups about 20/25 yds out from the hedge/hide with a gap of 25 -30 yd’s directly in front of the hide for the birds to fly into. The magnet on either side of the gap. If there was a break in the hedge line I would place the magnet that side of the hide to maximise visibility from birds approaching from behind. If you place the magnet directly in front of the hide in the gap between the decoys , then it will block your vision of low incoming birds and screw your focus up as the spinning arms catch your eye! if the birds keep flaring away there is something wrong . View the setup from outside the hide and ensure there is a clear area for the birds to approach and land, and there is nothing shining or visible in the hide . Finally, make sure the magnet does not shine by using matt camo tape on the arms and shaft. All assuming you are using dead birds on the arms. Hope that all makes sense
  9. Hi Harry, I am not sure which aspects of fit you are trying to resolve , whether it’s length of pull, cast or drop? The length of pull - stock length can be increased with the stock butt spacers that add 1/4” per spacer, the gun came with 2 Spencer’s which stack on top of each other allowing for 1/2” of increase to the pull length. The manual/ handbook says you can order another one from your dealer if required but will need extra long screws to attach to your stock. For cast and drop the gun comes with 6 separate shims, these are designed to be used as single shims and not multiples. The shims are specified for either cast on or off . It’s not that clear when reading through the manual initially , but the wording changes to install the shim and they do not interlock seamlessly in multiples. In my case I had to use the shim with the maximum right hand cast off with the minimum drop ( highest comb ) to get the fit somewhere near correct. I found that the comb was still to low for me and I have since added a Kickeaze Combe raiser pad. This is very comfortable and can simply be pealed off if you need to convert the stock to standard. These pads come in different thickness’s so you can achieve a good fit. Hope that helps you get a good fit
  10. Hi, Looks like your going for a Franchi. I haven’t tried one but I do have a Maxus 28” & a Benelli M2 28”. Both of these are great guns and I find that the slightly short standard stocks on both an advantage in the hide. You can shoot sitting down easier, and if you have extra clothing on then the guns still come up easily. They both weigh 7lbs and the siting plain along the rib looks like a 30” barrelled gun due to the long receiver in the auto, all very pointable. The Maxus has a lower comb ( even with highest shim) than the M2 and I have fitted a foam Kickeaze type comb raiser which works very well. From what you have said then I would go with the Franchi and get the gun fit set up . If you need a higher comb then the Kickease stick on foam is the best solution. Hope that’s helpful.
  11. Up date! I bought a pair of extension arms , they are 3ft long ( each) giving an increase of 6 ft to the spinning circle. I was shooting a field of laid barley and the pigeons on the magnet were now about 14ft apart, and really looked the business ........one small flaw in the plan though. The motor on the magnet could not cope with the increased load and weight of the extended arms, and the pigeons on the magnet turned very slowly. Back in the hide I watched them slowly turning like a pair of Frankenstein birds learning to fly.... No pigeon came to the decoys. I left the hide cursing and removed the extension arms from the magnet and watched them flying round at speed. The pigeons started to come and I finished on 29 for the afternoon. So bigger is not always better.
  12. I had GEARMATE install a gun draw system on my pickup. As a BASC member they give a 10% discount. The system is first class and forms a complete new load base in the pickup bed. Security is very important. If it were parked in an isolated farm yard on a shoot day it would give extra protection.
  13. I have seen these on various Y tube videos, sometimes called barley arms. Does anyone on here use them on a regular basis? Are they more effective on laid crops? I am shooting on a 100 acre block of laid barley, and the birds are on several patches, and I would like to draw them to my patch !
  14. Hi, your photos show a very precise profile & uniform increase in barrels diameter on both barrels . This would be the standard manufactured profile to enable the barrels to be machined for screw-in chokes. If there were a problem with the barrels then you wouldn’t get both barrels damaged/ bulged in exactly the same place ; that is to say any bulges would be irregular. So nothing to worry about. Just keep the threads/ bore clean, lubricated and screwed-in firmly as normal practise.
  15. Looks like a Miroku 800S Skeet as it has a silver finish and beaver tail forend. If the rib is about 12mm wide then it’s a 800SW ( W for wide rib) All the Miroku 800 series were very popular in the 70’s as they were very good guns and a good copy of the Browning B25 Belgium hand finished guns , but at fraction of the cost. And the rest is as they say history, Browning bought the business.
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