Tips for Sighting in Your Turkey Gun

Nikki Boxler |

While shooting one’s gun prior to the turkey season is not an absolute must, it is a really good idea to spend some time at the range before setting off to chase tom turkey. Or in my case, spend some time out on the property near one of our barns.

While Winchester’s Longbeard is lethal at longer shots up to and beyond 60 yards, I like to shoot most of the turkey I have a whack at closer in – around 30 to 40 yards. It is super-important to choose a good combination of ammunition, gun and choke to ensure a clean kill shot. In this video I am shooting Longbeard in 12 at both 30 and 40 yards to test the pattern of the gun, load and choke. I am using a full choke and Longbeard 3” in #5 shot.

As you can see, I have really good patterns at both 30 and 40 yards. I find that I am a little high and to the right at 30, but dead-on at 40 yards. So, the time I spent (even though it is frigid where I live) shooting the gun has taught me some things about the load and choke combination fired out of my SX-3. While I don’t like to shoot beyond 50 yards, I now have a great deal of confidence really anywhere from 40 yards in.

I’ll also compare what I have learned shooting this past weekend with what I find online on the Winchester Ballistic Calculator. Anyway, come along on this video blog with me and find out what the pattern looks like at 30 and 40 yards – pretty impressive.


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