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I have a bad back and am needing the softest recoiling 12ga 3 1/2" shotgun available. I currently shoot a Beneli Super Black eag

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  • I have a bad back and am needing the softest recoiling 12ga 3 1/2" shotgun available. I currently shoot a Beneli Super Black eag

    I have a bad back and am needing the softest recoiling 12ga 3 1/2" shotgun available. I currently shoot a Beneli Super Black eagle gen 1. I have added a limb saver recoil pad, but goose loads still hurt. Hate to retire the SBE but its time. Need help and advise.

  • #2
    Hate to say it, but you're not going to find a much softer-recoiling shotgun than the SBE. You might want to consider moving down to 3" loads, because 3.5 inchers are overrated for waterfowl hunting anyway, IMHO. The shot column is so long in the air that only the front portion of the pattern will actually hit the bird anyway - the rest will go sailing harmlessly by behind the target.
    Just my 2 cents, but if it was me, I'd sooner keep hunting with lighter loads and maybe a slightly reduced range than enduring pain from the big loads.

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    • #3
      Im not a shot gun guy so this may not work, but in Brownells they sell a hydraulic cylinder to be installed in the stock of a rifle and they have a great tech line to answer questions. I have shot a Remington 338 Ulra Mag with one installed and it tamed it down quit a bit. Im not sure if it can be used on a shotgun but it may be worth a look? Let us know what you come up with.

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      • #4
        What huntfishtrap said. Also, you might find wearing a back brace or support while hunting helps.
        Good luck.

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        • #5
          I agree that 3 inch shells are plenty for geese. They do pretty much the same job and are much easier on the shoulder and the wallet. There are also lots of options for recoil shields that strap to your shoulder. I got one of these after I had rotator cuff surgery. It made the difference between hunting and staying home. I don't use it for hunting now, but it is great for sighting in slugs and magnum centerfires.

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          • #6
            Yep all are pretty much spot on, I have an SBE II with the fancy recoil reducing stock and yes it helps with the 3.5" but I have found that any 3" will do the same job for less pain and dollars

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            • #7
              Remington Versa Max shoots 3.5 with a gentle recoil, it is more like a push than a sharp smack. Last year while shopping for new shotguns I shot all of the Benelli's, Franchi's and Remington's. The Versa has the least amount of felt recoil, even when shooting 3.5 shells.
              However, things are not well in Remington Country these days. Their quality control sucks. The forearm of the Versa was very loose and impossible to tighten. Remington's gun smiths are still working on it. Sent it in Sept 5,2013. The dealer gave me an M2 to use, it too has developed a loose fore end. Benelli said live with it. My Franchi lost its front bead and it took them 6 months to send me a replacement.
              It is my sincere hope all the manufacturers get things under control and provide some better service. Just put this out there so you'll be aware and not wait until hunting season is too close.
              Good luck,
              later
              charlie

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              • #8
                I'll say my Remington 11-87 is the softest shooting autoloader I've been able to shoot, that being as it is, I assume that the VersaMax would be the softest shooting 3-1/2 out there.
                Backing down to 3" shells could work too, they're plenty for geese but depending on your set up I can understand you wanting to continue using them.
                Having your barrel ported or simply adding a set of nice ported choke tubes could help out a lot.
                Adding weight would definitely be the fastest and probably one of the cheapest ways, however, seeing as you have a bad back that may not be the best option because the reduced recoil would probably not out weigh the extra stress added to your back from a heavier gun. An easy thing to try to add weight is simply adding a shell holder to the butt stock of your gun it'll add a little weight and if you don't like it you'll only be out $8.
                Some claim that shorter barrels can produce less recoil without sacrificing much in the way of ballistics, the principle seems correct but I don't know of any studies that prove it. You may want to switch from a 28" barrel to a 26"
                I think a Versa Max with a 26" barrel and some ported choke tubes could potentially help you out. Adding some weight and moving down to 3" shells will definitely help but only if you are still satisfied with the results.

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                • #9
                  Have you considered putting a pistol grip stock on the gun? I found that the hand takes some of the kick, and for me it greatly reduced perceived recoil.

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                  • #10
                    I know a guy who has bought a Remington 870 that is brand new. It has your required specs as well. It is a turkey style gun and does not kick much.

                    Comment

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