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  1. #1
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    Default New Winchester 101 or used Ruger Red Label

    Hi,
    I'm looking to buy quality 12ga O/U for around $1000.
    I narrowed my search down to the new Belgium made Winchester 101 for $999 from CDNN and the used in good condition Red Label for around $900 i saw at the last gun show. I guess the obvious choice would be a new Win but the fact that the Ruger is US made keeps me thinking.
    I would appreciate you feedback if you had a chance to handle both or either of these shotguns. Or maybe you can suggest other options in the same price range.
    Thanks.

  2. #2
    NES Member dixidawg's Avatar
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    I love my Red Label....
    Rocking Retrievers. Dogs doing what they were bred to do.


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  3. #3
    NES Member SMagee's Avatar
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    Can you get the Winchester in 30" barrels? Also waht are you going to be using it for primarily. If you want an all around "clays" guns 30" is what I would suggest. Long enough for trap, but still able to swing for Sporting, 5-stand, and Skeet.

    I have a few friends who bought 28" barrels and they are not very happy now.

    My neighbor bought a Winchester Select Energy 30" and she loves it. Belgian made, slight RH palm swell, ported barrels with HI viz front site. A few of the guys at the club have them and have put many thousands of rounds through them. Only 1 person with a problem, broken extractor springs. but as he said close to 10k you would expect some repairs. I have seen these going for $1100 on Gunbroker, and the come with plastic hard case and 5 flushmount chokes.

    Me I bought the Lanber 2097 LUX 30" from CDNN. Had the stock cut and an adjustable comb put in it. Bought some extended chokes, and I am very Happy with it. About 5k rounds with zero problems. Out of the box it shoots flat. Some here have had some problems I've read but for the price I won;t complain 1 bit. If you up in the NH/MA Seacoast area you can try it out any weekend, or Tuesday nights at our Trap field.

    But try/shoulder as many shotguns as you can before committing. It is truly all about the fit when choosing a shotgun, MUCH more than the name. If you want to hit what you're aiming at, that is.
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  4. #4
    NES Member PatMcD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SMagee View Post
    But try/shoulder as many shotguns as you can before committing. It is truly all about the fit when choosing a shotgun, MUCH more than the name. If you want to hit what you're aiming at, that is.
    Yup. Big Time.

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  5. #5
    NES Member Sparkey's Avatar
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    I have Winchester I don't like the Rugers just personal opinion

  6. #6
    NES Member MisterHappy's Avatar
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    Never buy a shotgun without trying it on for size, preferably actually shooting it.

    As said above: No fit, no hit.

    I've seen people drop a g-note on a "nice" gun and be unable to hit anything, and another person have a $150 beater that kicks butt.

    Ask around your club to see if anyone has one that you can try - like nuking them from orbit, it's the only way to be sure!
    If you pull a trigger, you have to pull together.
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  7. #7
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    SMagee and the rest of you guys thanks a lot for the suggestions.
    I agree I should try few out before deciding.

  8. #8
    NES Member boilermaker's Avatar
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    I would take a new Winchester /FN over a used Ruger every day of the week. I would take used Winchester over a used Ruger too.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by MisterHappy View Post
    I've seen people drop a g-note on a "nice" gun and be unable to hit anything,
    Be nice, it was a brand new gun to me, and I've gotten better since then. :)

  10. #10
    NES Member MisterHappy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by milktree View Post
    Be nice, it was a brand new gun to me, and I've gotten better since then. :)
    Didn't mean YOU!

    It's fairly common with new shooters (or new to the shotgun game) that the most basic criterion - fit - is often a by-chance thing.

    First, look at a pistol - all it has to do is fit your hand. It's only, generally, at the higher levels of pistol competition that a custom-moulded or adjustable grip will make its appearance.

    How many rifles do you see with hyper-adjustable stocks, where length of pull, cast-on/-off, comb height and angle, etc. can be changed?

    Unless the gun is completely wrong for you, you'll most likely be able to get the sights lined up on the target, and be good to go.

    This is where a shotgun is a different beast!

    With a shotgun, your eye is the rear sight - you are part of the gun, in a sense. This is why fit is so important.

    I'm a generally off-the-rack guy, and most production shotguns fit me pretty well, but here's a true story to illustrate the importance of trying on for size:
    A while back Dick's was having a sale on Stoeger Condor O/U sets - one reciever, two barrels, 12 and 20. Cheap. COOL! Good deal! I asked to see one, and did my initial "fit" test: Close eyes, mount normally to where it "feels" right, open eyes. I was staring at the back of the breech, and could not see the bead. I asked for another, "identical" one to try, and repeated. Excellent view. I placed them together on the counter, and noticed that the two guns had markedly diffferent dimensions WRT the rib on the barrel, and walked away. This lack of uniformity in production bothered me. This is not to say that a Condor is a bad gun - i have no personal experience wit them - but, just as a pair of size 11 Herman Survivor boots should be the same as another pair of the same make and model, so should "identical" new guns.

    You would likely not buy a pair of boots on the suggestion of a friend - or salesman - without trying them on, even though the "size" is the same as yours. So, too, with a shotgun.

    In all honesty, a shotgun that costs $1000 and is a poor fit is worse than a $300 shotgun that fits well. The additional $700 would be better put to ammo for practice, especially somewhere that better shooters gather, so you can pick their brains.

    I'm not the best shooter at my club, but one thing that I know is that once the body mechanics are settled, it's almost completely a mental game. A miss will breed a miss if you think about it; thinking about your score will make it go down. My gun is not an "ideal" Trap gun, but, a freak gust of wind notwithstanding, my misses are a "wetware" problem, because it fits me, and throws the shot where I'm looking.
    If you pull a trigger, you have to pull together.
    -Me

    Hancock Ale & Quail Society (Legacy Founding Member)
    NRA(Life); GOAL(Family); Southborough Rod & Gun Club
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