Can You Put a Choke Tube on any Shotgun

If you are an avid hunter, you will know that there are ways to improve your accuracy and range but it is also possible to change the pattern of your shot. For those who are new to hunting, you can use many things to customize your shotgun and, in turn, improve the success of your hunt. One of the ways to do this is to use a small piece of metal called a choke tube. But can you put a choke tube on any shotgun and how do you do it? Keep reading to find out!

What is a Choke Tube?

A choke tube is metal tubing that is added to the barrel of a shotgun to constrict it. This can significantly change the pattern of the shot, the firing distance, and the accuracy of a shot when hunting. Just as one can change choke tubes to suit a particular hunting style, a hunter can also customize his shotgun for a specific hunt.

How Many Types of Choke Tubes are There?

There are four main types of choke tubes used by hunters today. All choke tubes are interchangeable and offer different firing distances, levels of accuracy, and the spread of the shot you have fired. Find out which choke tube is the best for your game and skill level when hunting.

Cylinder Choke

The cylinder choke is the broadest type of choke tube available. It does not cause any constriction and keeps the flight path of the pellets open. This choke tube can be used for short firing ranges and is most commonly used with buckshot and birdshot hunting styles. A cylinder choke tube causes a widespread pattern that will ultimately destroy any targets within 15 to 25 yards.

Improved Cylinder Choke

The improved cylinder choke has been improved to constrict the barrel by 10% more than the regular cylinder choke. While this doesn’t seem like much of a change, it can change the firing pattern significantly. The improved cylinder choke is recommended to constrict but not restrict the pellet’s passage from the barrel. It is best to use this choke tube at 20 to 30 yards.

Modified Choke

A modified choke is best used in mid-range shots, which are those between 30 to 40 yards. The barrel has more constriction than you would get from an improved cylinder choke and it is also the most versatile. The modified choke is the number one choice for short- to mid-range shots. This choke is known to cause devastating damage to the game or target.

Full Choke

The full choke is the only choke used for longer firing distances. While there is more constriction, this choke tube requires more accuracy if it were to be used at shorter ranges. Using a full choke can result in your shot traveling much further and then spreading out, covering a more significant firing distance than any other choke tube. When used at 55 to 65 yards, this choke is perfect for prey or if your target is further away.

How Do You Choose a Choke Tube?

There are a few criteria you should think about when choosing a choke tube for your shotgun. Factors like intended distance, accuracy, and spread are among the most important, but there are two more that skilled hunters focus on too.

What to consider when choosing a choke tube for your shotgun:


The constriction of the choke has a significant impact on the spread of the shot and the accuracy. If you are hunting big game you will use a choke that has more spread and can travel at longer distances. A more constricted choke also causes your shot to spread further, covering a larger area and ensuring a hit on your intended target.


Hunting is essentially a killing game, and the more damage done, the better. A choke can improve the accuracy of your shot, which leads to more significant damage to the target or game. Modified and full chokes are the most used chokes when hunting as they deliver the most devastating damage on impact.

If you are interested in hunting, do some research on the shotguns, chokes, and ammunition available that would increase your game, or speak to a sales representative at a guns and ammo store for the best advice on which bullets to use with which gun, as well as which chokes are the best for that particular gun.

Can You Put a Choke Tube on any Shotgun?

Choke tubes can be used on any shotgun to change the constriction of the barrel. This helps to control accuracy, the spread of the pellets, and the damage that your shot will cause at different ranges. These all, in turn, make for a better hunt, allowing you to customize your shotgun to suit your game.

All shotguns of today can be used with choke tubes. While some are internal and cannot be changed, interchangeable tubes are available to suit your game and the type of ammunition you are using. For example, if you are using pellets, you would choose a choke tube that is more constricted, like the modified or full choke. Cylinder and improved cylinder chokes are best for use with slugs as they are less constricted and allow the slug to pass through the barrel easily.


While hunting is not for everyone, it is a popular sport enjoyed by many, and some certainly enjoy the thrill of the hunt. Using a choke tube on your shotgun can significantly improve your hunt by increasing the accuracy, spread, and damage caused by your shot.

Modern shotguns sold in stores across the country are designed for use with choke tubes and these can either be internal or external tubes that you can purchase separately and use as you wish to improve your hunt and change your firing range. As a rule of thumb, remember: The more constricted the choke, the longer the firing distance, the less constricted the choke, the shorter the firing range. Happy hunting!


Do not use any choke tubes that will constrict the shotgun’s barrel, as this can damage your shotgun and possibly fatally injure the hunter if the gun happens to backfire from forcing the slug through a constricted barrel. Always take care in choosing choke tubes and ask a qualified hunter or sales representative at an ammunition and gun store for the best slugs, choke tubes, and shotguns. 

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