Shotguns the terminology Over and Under (O/U) compared to Side by Side (S/S)

Shotguns are a popular choice among hunters and sport shooters due to their versatility and power. Two common types of shotguns are over and under side by side shotguns. While both types serve the same purpose of firing cartridges, they have distinct differences that make them unique.

An over shotgun has two barrels placed one on top of the other. This design allows for a lower profile and better weight distribution, making it easier to swing and aim. The top barrel is usually used for longer shots, while the bottom barrel is used for closer range shots (choked). This feature makes over and under shotguns ideal for hunting various types of game, usually game birds.

On the other hand, an under shotgun has two barrels placed side by side. This design offers a wider field of vision and allows for quicker target acquisition. The side-by-side configuration also makes it easier to load and unload the shotgun. Over and Under shotguns are commonly used in clay target shooting and other types of competitive shooting sports.

When it comes to reliability and durability, both over and under and side by side shotguns are known for their exceptional quality nowadays. However, over and under shotguns tend to have a slight advantage in terms of balance and recoil management. The lower profile of over shotguns helps reduce muzzle rise, allowing for more accurate and controlled follow-up shots. Side by side shotguns, on the other hand, are favoured for their quick handling and fast target acquisition.

Ultimately, the choice between an over and under or side by side shotgun comes down to personal preference and intended use. If you prioritize lightweight and short barrel’s for hunting game, a side by side shotgun may be the better option. On the other hand, if you participate in competitive shooting sports and value quick target acquisition with a more controlled feel through the swing, an over and under shotgun may be more suitable.

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