We asked some professional shooting instructors for some tips
Most shooters have suffered from a bout of changing choke-itis from time to time but the reality is that good technique and constant practice are the secrets of shotgun marksmanship and consistent clayshooting, and frantically changing chokes rarely helps very much. But still …
Chokes for clayshooting
Tony Bracci advises shooters go with quarter and half chokes for general clayshooting. For longer range clays opt for half and three-quarter. When shooting at close targets go with open chokes such as cylinder and skeet.
David Turner adds: “If I were to shoot on a sporting layout with a lot of closer targets then I would use skeet and skeet or quarter and quarter.”
If you’re encountering clays at average distances use half choke which is not too open and not too tight. Some targets maybe longer and some closer but David says he finds this to be the best compromise.
What about trap disciplines? As these targets are usually going away swiftly they are best tackled with tighter chokes, for example three-quarter and full choke.
Chokes for gameshooting
The most practical choking for any gun that’s going to be used for a bit of everything is quarter and half. You can half and half choke for all types of quarry, and just use a range of different cartridges. Tony Bracci also suggests three-quarter.
If you have a multichoke it is handy to be able to use the full and three-quarter tubes on the occasional wildfowling trip, but quarter and half is a good general compromise for game, clays and woodpigeons.
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The difference between chokes is very marginal and probably imperceivable, but the difference between two increments, say quarter and three-quarter most definitely is. Or indeed quarter and full, even more so.