How to reduce Recoil on a Youth Gun for a 9 yr old excited to hunt
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By EV da dog - 10/15/2012 10:17:37 AM
First let me start by saying that I am fairly new to waterfowl hunting (2.5 yrs) and I am still learning.  I have had a successful hunts the times I have been out, so much so that my 9 yr old son is excited to go out on his 1st youth hunt (Oct 27-28th). We went shopping for a gun and bought a Maverick 88 Youth model with adjustable stock.  The current set up of 12" LOP fits him right on.  He is a skinny 60 lb boy and I need ideas on how to reduce the recoil of the shotgun.  I was thinking of inserting some high dense foam in the hollow stock.  Has anyone done this?  I was also open to adding a slip on recoil pad, but cant afford to add an inch on the LOP.  If I add a slip on recoil pad, do I remove the existing pad?  Any help on this would be greatly appreciated, as I have 2 weeks before the youth hunt. 

In September I took him out for early teal.  He set out the spread and did all the calling.  I shot 2 that day.  He really enjoyed it.  I attached pics to share.
By duckless - 10/15/2012 7:13:57 PM
Soft recoil pad, be careful the slip-on adds  length so buy another pad, use low power loads for practice, and  make sure the mount is good. The first rule in waterfowling is you need more stuff!
By EV da dog - 10/17/2012 10:12:17 AM
I have narrowed down my search for a recoil pad for my sons shotgun to the following:
  • Shooter's Friend- Excellent reviews on Cabela's website
  • Kick Eez- Im convinced that the material they use "Sorbothane" works.
Anyone have any experience with either one of these products that might help me make the final decision?
By akcowboy - 10/17/2012 2:09:54 PM
Try looking up the mercury recoil tube it will take a lot of recoil when inserted in the stock 
By Trackmyer - 10/17/2012 6:24:30 PM
EV, you didnt mention what gauge this is in 12 or 20.  Twenty would obviously be lighter on the recoil front, but if you are using 12 I would suggest going with the smallest loads to safely take your target game with.  For example, if your hunting duck go with #4 shot and go with a 2 3/4" shell.  The Maverick 88 I have, though its the defender model is still an 88 can take 2 3/4 or 3" shells.  So stay as short a shell and the smaller size shot and you will have as light a recoil as you could get out of that gun stock.
By Army of Dad - 10/17/2012 8:26:02 PM
Really, you have done as much as you should need to.  Having the gun fit him is the single most important thing to reduce felt recoil. It sounds like you have taken care of that. I assume he is shooting a 20?  My son started not much older than that using my grandpa's old bolt action 20.  He had no issue with recoil, especially in a hunting situation where he won't be firing as many shots as a day on the sporting clays course and may be wearing heavier clothing to help soften the recoil.

Are you in Texas? I only ask because that is the youth season in most of the state...

Good luck and I love the use of the sled, that's how I tow in my gear too.
By EV da dog - 10/18/2012 9:53:21 AM
Thanks to everyone for their inputs.  He will be shooting a 20 guage and I ordered a Kick Eez pre fit recoil pad for it.  I will also look into the mercury tube.  By the way if anyone ever deals with the Kick Eez product, their customer service is exceptional.  They answered all my questions and walked me through the whole process on the recoil reduction and they took into consideration everything I had to say on the topic of reducing the recoil for my son. 

Army of Dad- I am in Texas...San Antonio, so I travel to Corpus Christi/Rockport/Aransas Pass for hunts.  For the youth season I found a Corpus Christi DU-member with a guide service and he is offering DU members (presenting a card), youths, and un-guided hunts for only $75 a person.  So where are you and your body headed?
By Army of Dad - 10/19/2012 8:31:02 AM
Nice, I hope he has a good shoot.

We are north of DFW and will be hunting on Lake Lewisville or Ray Roberts.  We should have two other kids going with my son on both days of youth season.  All of them are novice duck hunters.  Two of them have come with before, one had never shot a gun until we took him to the sporting clay course last summer. I think one of this group of three will be hunting both days, and the other two will be hunting just a day a each. I just hope I can get them all on some birds.
By Duckrecon1 - 10/19/2012 3:41:57 PM
I see that you have had several good responses to your question on ways to soften the kick for your son.  I started my youngest at 8 yrs old with the Kick-Eez pad and it worked great!

By the way, your son may be interested in a youth waterfowl contest that I run.  IT IS FREE and designed simply for the youth to have fun.  Attached is an entry form and more information on the contest.  We have are now up to 35 youth across three States.  Some took advantage of early Teal and are leading their brackets.

You can also fo to and go to the Contest page and get a "Word" version of the form to complete and email.  But in short the contest is:

ü  Duck Recon participant medal and the conclusion of the season – awarded to all that enter.

ü  “Duckman of the Season” Trophy awarded to the top finisher in each Division/Bracket.  Division I, Age 10 and Younger, Division II, Ages 11 to 13 and Division III ages 14 to 16.  Bracket size of 5 or less as volume allows

1.    Hunt any place you like!

2.     By Monday of each week submit Participant’s count of “Days Hunting” and “Waterfowl Taken” for the prior week to

3.     By Friday of that week Duck Recon will post current standings on its website.

4.     Participants will earn 3 Points for each Day Hunting and 0.25 Points for each Waterfowl Taken.

5.  At the end of the season, winners will be determined by their total cumulative point score achieved.