Turkey hunting is virtually a sport.
But while it’s thrilling to go turkey hunting, it can be disappointing if you are unable to take one home.
Hunting turkey is not an easy task that’s because turkeys are not easy to catch.
If you think that catching a turkey is as easy as catching a small bird. Think again.
Even Teddy Roosevelt who was an expert hunter found catching turkeys to be quite a challenge.
To improve your chances of catching your first gobbler, you need to have the right equipment and some turkey hunting skills.
Most turkey hunters use turkey guns and choke tubes specifically designed for turkey hunting. And as a beginner, you should do the same if you want to catch your first tom.
In this article, we discuss the best choke tubes for turkey hunting and the different types of choke tubes.
Carlson’s Long Beard XR chokes are considered to be some of the best chokes for turkey hunting. They are usually a top choice during target championships. But what is it about the Long Beard XR chokes that get hunters excited about them? Let’s take a look at the features.
- Shot-lok technology for tight shot patterns
- Constriction size of 0.660
- Stainless steel build
- Compatible with Remington, Browning Invector, Beretta, Benelli, Mossberg, and Winchester
After much research and having read through hundreds of customer reviews, the Carlson’s Long Beard XR topped our list!
The Carlson’s Long Beard has a stainless steel body to ensure durability. But what most hunters love about these chokes is that it uses Shot-lok technology. This technology enables the chokes to deliver better shot patterns than standard chokes.
Additionally, they are compatible with several rifle brands including the Mossberg 500/835/935, Remington, Beretta/Benelli, Browning Invector, and Winchester.
Choke Tubes for Turkey Comparison Chart
17-4 H Stainless Steel
17-4 PH Stainless Steel
Proprietary Black-T Coating
Multi-Phase Groove Technology
Compound Diagonal Porting
4 Best Choke Tubes for Turkey (as of January, 2020):
If you are a turkey hunter, you can’t go out and buy any type of choke tubes. You have to buy the right choke tubes.
First, you need chokes that are compatible with your shotgun type/brand and two, the chokes should be appropriate for the specific activity you want to undertake.
The chokes use Shot-lok technology for improved performance. Due to the tight constriction the technology delivers, the shot patterns are extremely tight making it easy to hit your target at more than 50 yards away.
This is remarkable because sometimes hunters don’t want to get to close to their game to avoid spooking it.
The other feature that makes the Carlson’s Choke Tubes 70120 chokes stand out is its triple shot technology, which gives a shooter more advantage because it minimizes pellet deformation.
This means that when the pellets leave the gun, they don’t get flattened. They remain round. This enables them to move at a higher velocity and deliver better shot patterns.
- Fits Remington shotguns
- .660 constriction
- Distance more than 50 yards
- Made from 17-4 stainless steel
- Features shot-look Technology
- Has a 25% longer Parallel Section, thus throwing tighter and denser patterns downrange
- Triple shot Technology reduces Pellet deformation, shortened shot string and has less Flyers
- No Steel Shot Larger than #4 may be used in our Turkey Choke Tubes
- Lifetime Warranty
- Uses shot-lok technology which delivers tight shot patterns
- Made of stainless steel for durability
- Uses Trip Shot technology, which decreases pellet deformation
- Constriction size of 0.660 for improved shot accuracy
- Doesn’t fit all Mossberg models
- Not compatible with steel shots
These chokes use fluted ports and extended taper to enhance the constriction ensuring tight shot patterns and reduced recoil. This ensures that you get an accurate shot at a distance of 40 yards.
The Primos Hunting 69405 is a good choice if you have a Remington 870. The only problem with these chokes its compatible with only a limited number of shotgun brands.
- Increases range and pattern density
- Utilizes an extended taper and fluted ports
- Distance of 40 yards
- Reduced Recoil
- Tightens patterns up to 20 percent and reduces recoil
- Proprietary Black-T coating resists rust and corrosion
- Uses fluted ports and extended taper for better shot patterns and reduced recoil
- Coated with black-t coating for corrosion and rust prevention
- Not flexible enough to accept a range of shot sizes
The Truglo TG185X head-banger is an excellent option for long-range shooting. Made of heat-treated steel to ensure durability, the Truglo head-banger uses multiphase technology to ensure consistency and better shot patterns.
The chokes are CNC machined to ensure precision.
- Multi-Phase groove technology
- Extend your effective range with lethal patterns that reach out farther
- Rated for Hevi-Shot Winchester Long Beard XR, Federal Premium 3rd Degree and other high performance turkey loads
- Heat-treated steel for better durability
- CNC-machined for optimum precision
- Polished end face for better seating and sealing
- Uses multi-phase technology to ensure consistent and tight shot patterns
- Made of heat-treated steel for durability
- Constriction size 0.665
- CNC-machined for better precision
- Compatible with Remington, Mossberg, Benelli/Berreta, Browning Invector, and Winchester
- Compatible with an only small number of gunshots types/brands
The Kicks Industries GOBBLIN’ Thunder chokes feature fluted diagonal ports for recoil reduction and better shot patterns. They are also CNC machined, so you should expect consistent shots with these chokes.
- Compound diagonal porting
- Reduced recoil
- Unique internal design
- 17-4 PH Stainless Steel
- No special wrench required
- Engraved side markings
- Easy identification
- Completely smooth internal surface
- No shot distortion
- Lifetime warranty
- Stainless steel body for durability
- CNC machined for precision
- Uses fluted diagonal ports for reduced recoil, improving speed and accuracy of shots
- Compatible with lead shots only
If you have never tried turkey hunting before, but it’s something you are thinking of trying, here is what you need to know. Turkeys are not easy to catch. But no game is, which is why there are tools designed specifically for hunting.
To kill a turkey, you need a shotgun and some good choke tubes. Although the brand or type of shotgun you choose doesn’t matter, what does matter are the choke tubes.
So how do you figure out what choke tubes to use for turkey hunting?
Some gunshots have fixed choke tubes, and if you have one, then you don’t have the option of changing the choke tubes. If that’s not the case and you are looking to buy good choke tubes for turkey hunting, here are a few things you should look for.
The size of the constriction
The most common types of choke tubes are the cylinder, improved cylinder, modified, improved modified, full, and skeet. Each choke has a difference constriction size.
What a choke does is it reduces the size of the bore. By doing this it improves the shot pattern as well as the accuracy and precision of the shot.
Generally, the constriction sizes range from 0.00 to 0.045 inches. However, certain choke tubes, particularly turkey choke tubes may have a constriction size of 0.10.
Here is a summary table that shows the different kinds of choke tubes and their constriction sizes.
|Choke tube type||Constriction for 12 gauge||Efficient shot pattern range|
|Cylinder||0.00||Less than 20 yards|
|Improved Cylinder||0.01||20 yards|
The type of choke tube
Chokes constrict a shotgun’s barrel bore. In other words, they reduce the size of the bore. How this benefits you, the shooter is that you get more accurate and precise shots.
So this is how it works. When you shot, the pellets leave the gun clustered. They don’t fall over the place, instead, they stay together over a distance. When they remain grouped, this increases your chance of hitting your target as opposed to when they spread about.
The following are the standard constriction sizes and distances for each choke tube mentioned above.
The constriction size of skeet chokes for 12 gauge systems 0.005 inches. Compared to a cylinder which is 0.00 inches, the skeet is slightly tighter.
This means that you can get an efficient pattern with these chokes at a range of 20 yards. This makes these chokes good for hunting small birds at close ranges.
The constriction size for these chokes is 0.010 for 12 gauge choke systems and 0.007 for 20 gauge choke systems. They are tighter than skeet chokes and that means you can hit a target that is more than 20 yards away.
The ideal distance for these chokes is about 30 yards.
Shotgun Pattern Diameter Comparison: 30-60 Yards:
The constriction size of modified chokes is 0.020 for 12 gauge choke systems and 0.014 for 20 gauge systems. The ideal distance to get an efficient pattern with these chokes is 30 or 40 yards.
The construction size of the improved modified chokes is 0.03 for 12 gauge systems and 0.021 for 20 gauge systems. To get these chokes, you would need to order them as they are not usually offered with standard shotguns.
So unless you need these chokes for one reason or the other, the performance difference between them and the modified chokes is marginal.
These are the king of chokes and a full choke has a constriction size of 0.04 for 12 gauge systems and 0.27 for 20 gauge systems. These chokes can deliver an efficient shot pattern at a distance of 65 yards making them ideal for long-range shooting.
But you owe it to yourself and the game to ensure that the chokes you choose are those that can deliver dense patterns and patterns that can hold up with enough energy to kill your game.
Top important things you need to know about choke tubes
- You can use different chokes on the same shotgun as long as they can fit. This gives you more use of your shotgun. That means you can engage in shooting sporting clays, turkey or duck hunting, and target shooting
- Many hunters are bad shooters. So if you find yourself unable to hit your target even if your gun has good choke tubes, the problem is you and not the chokes. You may need to practice first how to shoot better
- Accurate shooting doesn’t have to do with the chokes alone. Although they do help a lot, you also need to learn how to shot well. Practice and good technique can help you become a good shooter
- Beginner shooters should not worry much about excessive choke. They should concentrate more on ensuring that shot patterns are efficient at 40 yards, but they are not too tight
- Always look at shot patterns when deciding which chokes to buy. The choke patterns can help you know which chokes to use for shooting sporting clays and which ones to use for turkey hunting
- If you are unable to remove a choke, use releasing fluid and a hairdryer to expand the barrels so as to loosen the choke. If this doesn’t work, don’t force it out instead, take your gun to a gunsmith who can help remove the choke
- Tight patterns more often than not deliver accurate kills at long-ranges. But at short-ranges, you might find yourself missing your target because you need more accuracy
- If your chokes are damaged, discarded them as they are no longer of use to you
- Remember to clean your chokes after each use. Dirt can reduce the performance of the chokes. However, some hunters believe that not cleaning chokes improve their performance further. Nevertheless, cleaning them can increase their lifespan
Remember, although choke tubes can help you improve shot accuracy, if you are bad at shooting, you’ll have a hard time bagging your turkey. Even with a superior turkey gun and choke tubes, these are not enough to help you catch a turkey.
You first need to be a good shot and that requires practice and learning the right skills. Once you have acquired the techniques and learned something about turkey hunting, only then can you get positive results.