pattering head ache

Guns, ammo, and more! What do you shoot, and why?
Posts: 10
Joined: April 3rd, 2010, 10:34 am

RE: pattering head ache

Postby dan » April 3rd, 2010, 6:05 pm

emailed MR .Clark didnt really exspect a reply so soon. He gave me some good advise . Seems to be a super nice guy, one of those people you could share a camp fire with. Im impressed . Thanx to all .

air leak
Posts: 69
Joined: March 14th, 2010, 10:16 am

RE: pattering head ache

Postby air leak » April 5th, 2010, 5:59 am

But am i worrying for nothing .

I would respectfully say ..yes.

We shoot Remington Premier Magnum, 12 gauge 3 inch with 2 oz of #4 copper plated pellets.

Every turkey that we have killed, couldn't care less on how many pellets were in a 10 inch circle at 40 yards.

Posts: 481
Joined: April 26th, 2009, 11:36 am

RE: pattering head ache

Postby nhtrkybstr » July 10th, 2010, 12:55 am


Thanx guys. But am i worrying for nothing . If i am why do most preach for titer patterens. Is 100 IN 10" the norm ?

I'm no expert, but I will share what I have learned.
The minimum number of pellets to kill a turkey is 80 in a 10" circle at 40 yards. The reasoning is, alot can happen when you pull the trigger. The turkey can flinch, move, drop his head, see you etc., etc.
So you want that nice, even pattern to cover any area he might stick his neck or head in.
Now the tricky part. If you want to shoot lead, your numbers are gonna be a little lower at 40, but if you stick with a proven shotshell like the winchester supreme #6, you should still get a pretty decent number at 40, and be well above your 80 pellet count.
Now for your choke question.
If you want to shoot #5, you will need a more open choke like a .665 or a .670. The rem 870's traditionally seem to like Jellyhead chokes, and if you are going to use #6 shot, I would recommend a .660 JH. The JH's are reasonably priced chokes.
I would reccomend you head over to, and print off Clark's deep cleaning process. It works, and will really help alot.
I can't take credit for any of this. The fine folks over at pointed me in this direction, and if you check out their website, you will find alot of info in the turkey gun section!
Best of luck to you!

You can't kill'em sittin' on the couch!

Posts: 53
Joined: June 13th, 2010, 4:00 am

RE: pattering head ache

Postby woodzman » July 10th, 2010, 5:26 am

Hi Dan. You've already got some good advise from some smart people.

I may take some heat over this, but I'll tell you about my turkey gun. It's a 20 ga. Ithaca 37, with a 2 3/4" chamber and a modified choke. I've had the gun for a long time and I do all my hunting with it. Out to 30 yards, with #7 1/2 lead shot, It's deadly on turkeys. I don't have anything against anybody that wants to shoot their birds at fifty yards. Whatever makes you happy. For me though, the exciting part of turkey hunting is in calling the birds in close and even when I think back to birds I could have killed if I'd been carrying a bigger/tighter choked gun, it doesnt amount to very many missed opportunities over the years. Just my opinion, but it sounds to me like you've got a pretty good turkey gun right now. Then again, I can't blame anybody for wanting the best choke and load combination they can get.


Posts: 51
Joined: January 14th, 2011, 3:50 pm
Location: Wyomissing, PA

RE: pattering head ache

Postby hunter177 » February 5th, 2011, 2:55 am

I agree with the others, 50 in 8" at 40 yards means a dead turkey. If you want to experiment further, I've gotten good patterns with a TruGlo Gobble Stopper Extreme .665 from my 870. Good luck!

CB on the run
Posts: 90
Joined: March 19th, 2009, 1:56 pm

RE: pattering head ache

Postby CB on the run » February 5th, 2011, 3:48 am

When everything is perfect 50 pellets in a 8" circle certainly should reward you with your bird.  But in hunting, we know many variables can come into play.  Wind, twigs, temperature and many other viables can change that pattern.  Leave that shell out in your car overnight in 20 degree weather and shoot a pattern the next day and see the difference.  Are you shooting lead?  If so it deforms much easier and doesn't hold that tight pattern many are expecting.  On the plus side, it is much less expensive than HTL shot.  HTL is heavier and harder than Pb(lead) thus stays together farther and retains more engery is case you misjudge the distance.
For example, I shoot a Remington 20ga 1100 that has been customized.  It is ported, the forcing cone lengthened and it's been altered to shoot 3" shells.  With a cheap RSF choke it shoots 120's with Federal HW FC #6's, 150's with the #7's, 180's with EM H13 #7's and around 210 with Nitro #7's. All at a measured 40 yards and a 10" circle. I shoot a red dot on top because it is tight at close ranges.  I shot a bird a 19 steps last spring and one a 44 yards the year before.  For comprision, the best lead shell will give me about 40 hits at 35 yards.
My feelings are, that I spend too much money and time off from work not to be able to take a 40 yard shot with complete confidence.


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Joined: January 22nd, 2010, 2:03 pm

RE: pattering head ache

Postby turkeyfreq » February 5th, 2011, 3:23 pm


I too am a beginner and use a Remington 870 Express Magnum with a 28" barrel. I have a Remington Extra full Turkey choke that I use in it as well. I patterned my gun out at 35 yards 100 in a 10" circle using 3" Remington Nitros. I hunt here in Kansas in both woods and in fields. I learned a lot in the past year from this forum and from Turkey and Turkey Hunting magazine. Don't get wrapped around the 40 yards, practice your calling skills and get them Toms to get alittle closer then take his head off at 15 to 20 yards.

Good luck to hunting this spring hope you one of the big ones.

Posts: 39
Joined: January 25th, 2010, 8:01 pm

RE: pattering head ache

Postby EMSDJ2 » February 6th, 2011, 4:53 am

Dan I have an Primo's jelly head that i'm not using since I bought a new benelli.  I can send it to you to try and see if it helps you out.  Then we can work something out.  Only had 6 shells through it.  Just pm me if you are interested in trying it.



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