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    Worcestershire/Gloucestershire border

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  1. My gauge is a 'home made' anyway and for the life of me I can't remember exactly what dimensions I used or where I got them from. It is a stainless steel solid cylindrical plug, a not much looser than sliding fit in the chamber. There are rings turned into it to mark the lengths. In any case, with the front of the chambers being a (sort of) cone, the whole thing is open to some variation from the diameter of the gauge etc. It does sound plausible - and in fact, since I (who uses 3/4 oz at clays and 1 oz at live quarry) am extremely unlikely to want to use 3" magnums, it is of no material consequence to me! Just one of those strange 'shooting anomalies'!
  2. Seeing this thread 'revive' reminded me that I did a further investigation into my gun with the 'odd' proof combination of 1200 Kg and 70mm chambers. (see previous page post of 9th July where there is a photo of the proof marks). I measured the chambers using a plug gauge. A 'normal' AyA proofed for 70 mm shows the plug gauge drops in to slightly over 2 3/4" (my gauge is Imperial). The 1200 Kg proof barrels, my gauge drops in to near dead on the 3" marker (i.e about 7/32" longer chambers). A hypothesis might be that these were intended to be 3", but were just too short for the proof house to accept that the chamber was 76 mm (using their formal 'standard plug gauge"). The barrels were made by AyA (in Spain) as an additional pair some years after the gun was made, but it is my understanding that they were fitted and proofed in the UK.
  3. Just a thought; Moving forward - non toxic is likely to be needed sooner or later. Availability and choice (of both non toxic and non plastic) in the less popular gauges are likely to be slower to evolve. 16 is a very popular gauge on the continent - particularly France. It may be that 16 will have a better choice of non toxic/plastic sooner than 28. Food for thought.
  4. Food (and drink I think though I have usually been driving) always was expensive and seems to have got more so with time. I understand it is at Ragley again next year. https://thegamefair.org/attractions/
  5. That may be true and I'm certainly not claiming otherwise - but there is also (in my opinion) another important factor - and that is confidence. I KNOW that I can pick up my normal much practised with AyA, pop in a cartridge with which I am familiar - and shoot at a target at a range within my personal comfort zone - and have a good level of confidence in the result. I don't think in choke, shot size, yards distance. I just use what I know 'works' and in the way in which I am practised and confident. That is important because it enables me to concentrate on the target and shoot in a natural and relaxed frame of mind without worrying about technicalities ....... and there for me is the making of an enjoyable day out.
  6. Most of my choice of hardware is fixed choke, and between Imp and 1/2. (A mix of Imp and 1/4, 1/4 in both, and 1/4 and 1/2) I do have (as said earlier) one multichoke with a total of 6 inserts I think (never changed then, though do take them out for cleaning) - and two guns with 2 sets barrels, my S57 Beretta has either "Skeet" (two very near cylinder barrels) or "Game" (at nominally 1/4 and 1/2) and an AyA with two sets, one both 1/4, the other full and extra full (never used).
  7. Not taken that way either. Just a phrase I have used for 50 years! Two (genuine) points; first I don't shoot woodcock (anymore) in fact our shoot is no woodcock allowed - hence (partly) the question about the allowed quarry list)- and second I doubt I would put my gun up on a woodcock at 40 yards. A woodcock at a true 40 yards looks TINY. I might not even see it! Next, I only have (in my normal game guns, being a mix of Imp, 1/4 and 1/2 from which to choose. I do have one multichoke gun (bought second hand) and I believe it has 3/4 and full available though I have never changed the chokes in it. I do have an additional set of barrels in full and extra full for one gun, but have never used them either (and doubt I ever will). So - what would I pick? Probably an AyA No 1 (6 3/4 lbs), choked (and I had to look this up) nominally about 1/4 and 1/2. Patterns evenly with Hull Imperial Game 1 oz Fibre. I would probably use my usual 1 oz No 6. Simply - I am accustomed to what I use -and know fairly well how it performs at the ranges I am used to. I woukd pick my birds to shoot what I feel comfortable with. I have not been on a shoot where I am expected to take the majority of shots at 40 yards or so (some claim not to shoot under 40 yards) - and would do poorly under those circumstances. I have no practice and it is well outside my comfort zone. I cannot answer better (or more truthfully) than that! Two reasons for not using my either my one multichoked gun - or the full and extra full barrels. they are not what I would choose for woodcock anyway (both being on the heavy side) I would expect the majority of shots I woukld take to be well inside 40 yards - and heavy choke is not suited to that (in my view).
  8. OK, a pricked bird is a wounded bird. I accept that. We have all seen a bird clearly hit, but not down - and to take a shot at more than one's comfortable range seems to me 'in order' in that case. I don't do my shooting on a calculator - or from tables. I don't think of the range of each bird in yards, metres, or whatever; What (I think) runs through my mind is: Is it safe?, is it 'on the quarry list for the day'? Is it 'my bird'?, is it too close?, is it too far? is it hit and wounded by another gun? Those are the sort of questions that run through my mind. For the record, I use either 15/16 oz or 1 oz of no 6 through anything between Improved and 1/2 choke - not chosen specifically - simply - those are what are in my guns that I would pick for a day game shooting at home (or elsewhere where I have attended). I am very comfortable with the combination I use for the shooting I do.
  9. Agree. 40+ yards is not a normal shot for me. If it is a pricked bird - then I would have a go, but it isn't something I would either do or try to do generally. It isn't needed in my shooting days, and IF I was to use large high performance loads and tight chokes (such as suited to a Devon style 'high bird shoot') - then I would either have to leave the vast majority of what would come over my peg, or accept a lot of the birds would be badly 'shot up'. Ours birds are mostly at more 'normal' ranges. Horses for courses and a modest load and open(ish) choke suits what I do.
  10. No great secret; the vast majority of my shooting is at 'normal farm shoot style' ranges, probably being 25 to 35 yards - and so my current (everything between Imp and 1/2) depending on the gun works just fine with an appropriate (1 ounce typically), always fibre wad cartridge.
  11. I was looking forward to the programme; I enjoy fishing (though I'm not very good at it and only get to do it occasionally!) and I love Scotland (where I do the little fishing I get to do) and just being by a river or loch in the wonderful Scottish scenery is heaven to me. I switched off half way through. I can't list what was wrong - just - well virtually everything! I enjoy Paul and Bob, loved the old Geoffrey Palmer/Rae Borras fishing series based on Isaac Walton - but this - absolute rubbish.
  12. As you say, .630 is near bang on 16 mm. Choke is best (in my view) described as 'estimated' based on barrel measurements - because really it is the effect it has on pattern that is important. For 'estimating' purposes based on the constriction compared to the parallel part of the bore (taken as .630); 3/4 (nominally 21 thou constriction) would be about .609 based on .630 parallel part bore and similarly 1/4 (nominally 7 thou constriction) would be .623. Based on this - your gun at .605 (25 thou constriction) and .615 (15 thou constriction) seems more like almost full and 1/2 (a bit tighter than you mention) 1/2 would be approx .616 (14 thou constriction) in the choked area - and Imp about .626 (4 thou constriction). Figures from here https://www.theyorkshiregent.com/shooting/shotgun-chokes-explained-guide-markings-sizes-patterns/ If you wish to know accurately what pattern you are getting, the pattern plate is really the only way, and of course it will vary somewhat by cartridge.
  13. Ragley Hall, near Alcester a bit south of Birmingham
  14. Is the 4 book story even true? Some sources deny it; https://www.townandcountrymag.com/society/a37117214/prince-harry-not-writing-multiple-memoirs-denial-statement/
  15. I didn't go, but friends did and called in for tea on the way home. Much as Simonm above, they didn't have traffic problems, and reported it wasn't as big as previous years. In particular - fishing was not much represented. They found the 'row signs' and site maps were rather lacking making finding what you wanted less easy than previous years. Overall they enjoyed their day and tell me it is at Ragley again next year.
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