| Did you know that approximately 8% of the shotgun stocks made today actually fit someone, the other 92% need to see a gunsmith. Take a quick look back in time to see why and where it all went wrong.|
Our first gunstock is one that is found on many waterfowler shotguns, designed for heads up shooting.
Our second gunstock is one found on shotguns made around 1930, again designed for heads up shooting.
Our third gunstock is a modern gunstock designed for felt recoil reduction and anything but heads up shooting.
What happened and why:
In our first picture a waterfowler shotgun that was used by legendary commercial duck hunters, legendary because they would bring in large amounts of ducks from the fields and well known for their shooting abilities. The stock was designed for a hunter so that his head would be upright and looking squarely away at the game then the angles cut into the stock would guide the stock to the shooters shoulder bringing it up to the shooters point of view or aiming point. (Proper fit)
Our second gunstock is one designed for heads up shooting and when you look at the comb and heel area of the stock, a shooter could move his head slightly forward or rearward to get proper height for viewing the proper sight picture an improvement to fit more people to one stock.
Our third gunstock is of modern design,
note: the pistol grip an admirable feature relieving hand stress for all,
note: the straight comb an admirable feature only if the stock fits you in all other dimensions of stock fit,
note: the drop at the heel which is short for average heads up shooting unless you have a short neck hence you now have a stock that fits about 8% of the shooting public.
Why is this:
Around 1930 standards were finally set for chamber dimensions many older shotguns had 2-1/2" chambers and a lot of 2-3/4" shells were fired in them the recoil was well known, it kicks like a mule but will kill anything in its path were very common phrases. The kick like a mule was from the short chambers being filled with longer shells, the will kill anything in its path was from a proper stock fit.
Shooters demand less recoil:
Shooters definately don't like recoil so now there is a problem, how does the major manufacturers of firearms deal with this simple problem, well one way would have been recall the shotguns that were mass produced and recut the chambers to proper length, at the time when this happened this would have been an almost impossible task so this was a quick fix for a bad rap on heavy recoil, stock redesign and proper chamber length. They knew at the time if you straighten out the stock there is less felt recoil with a bad fit gun for all shooters and if you have the proper chamber for the shells being fired in them the recoil is reduced combine these two items and you satisfy all the shooters on recoil issues.
The big mistake lives on:
The firearms industry has never really went back to address the stock fit issue other than design stocks that will fit some people on the average height of 5'7" to about 5'10" and if you add a straight comb to the stock it will fit even a lesser amount of people hence you now have shotgun stocks that will somewhat fit about 8% of the shooting public. This is a shame because I feel that the average male height of most of the steady shell buying, gun loving shooting public is 6' tall on average and with so many women getting into the shooting sports they are shorter than 5'7".
Recoil is becoming an issue again:
With all the improvements made to reduce recoil:
Gas operated semi-auto shotguns, recoil less.
Longer forcing cones, reduce recoil.
Recoil pads, reduce felt recoil.
Ported barrels, reduce recoil.
Yes once again you here people talking about this or that gun pounding them to the point they will sell that imparticular gun. The answer is all to obvious to those who know:
(The stock just does not fit.)
A bad fit gun will simply pound you till you get one that fits or give up your sport. Evidence of people well beyond the manufacturers standard one stock fits all will swap, trade, buy more guns than you can shake a stick at trying to find one stock that will work for them.