How to Load Unload a 12/20 Gauge Shotgun

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  • Topic: Firearm, Shotgun, Gauge
  • Pages : 5 (1714 words )
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  • Published : May 11, 2011
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How To Properly Load and Unload A 12/20 Gauge Shotgun

Many Americans have permits to carry and possess firearms within their household for recreational and personal use but fail to successfully teach those living with them how to use them. Just because the weapons are in arms reach does not mean they can protect you in certain situations if you do not know how to use them correctly. There are several women out there who's husbands store firearms in the house but if a robber broke into their homes, they would not know what to do with the guns. These directions provide you with safe, detailed instructions how to correctly load and unload your 12/20 gauge shotgun wither you are using it for recreational, personal or emergency use.

The most important key to loading any firearm is safety. Being safe at all times allows lean room for error and accidents. There are three main safety rules: always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction away from anything you are not willing to shoot, always keep your finger off the trigger unless ready to fire and always keep the gun unloaded until ready for use. These three rules will guarantee you and those around you safety at all times.

A shotgun has a few key parts to it that is necessary to know. All of the components listed below briefly describe the shotgun. Knowing the parts are significant in understanding the weapon. The stock of the shotgun is the base that allows the recoil pad to sit in the arm pit of your shoulder. It provides cushion while firing the weapon. The magainze loading port can store up to two shotgun shells at one time while the third is loaded into the ejection port. The fore-end is like the pump that you pull or push to load/reload the gun. Also on the weapon is a safety and release button located next to the trigger. The safety disables the gun from firing unless it is pushed off. The release button, when pushed, allows the shells to unload from the ejection port with the assistance of the fore-end.

Not only are there several parts to a shotgun but there are several types of shotguns as well. The most common ones are the 12 and 20 gauge. You ask what is the difference? A 12 gauge has a barrel diameter of 18.53 mm while a 20 gauge is 15.63mm. Since the 12 gauge has a bigger barrel in terms of diameter, it allows for more ammunition to fire through than a 20 gauge. The ammunition or shell as they call it, for a 12 gauge packs more powder and shot inside allowing for the gun to be more precise. Another difference is that a 12 gauge weighs more than a 20 gauge since it fires more within it's shell. Both guns, however, can easily do the trick for small game hunting or taking care of an intruder.

Since you now have a basic understanding of the safety, differences and parts of the 12/20 shotgun let's start with loading the firearm. Again, safety comes first so always make sure to follow the three main rules listed above in order to prevent any injury or accidents. First off, obtain the right ammunition depending on the gauge of your shotgun. All guns are different and require different shell types depending on which gauge you are using. See below.

So, let's say we have a 20 gauge. You will need to use the yellow one in the picture but all 20 gauge shells may not appear yellow so you will have to check the shell prior to use. All the shells are properly labeled and need to be carefully read. Now that we have our type of shells, the 20 gauge is able to hold up to 3 shells maximum at one time so you will need 3 to fully load your gun. Grab your unloaded gun with one hand on the stock and one on the fore-end with the barrel facing downwards and away from anyone/anything. This gives you complete control of the firearm. Now, make sure the firearms safety is on. To do this, next to the trigger there will appear to be a little push button. When the push button is showing red, it means it is not in...
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