Shotguns-ou-12

Over/Under Shotguns for Less Than $1000: Lanber Is Best Buy

The over/under shotgun stacks one barrel above the other and is loaded by hinging the breechface away from the barrel for direct access to the chambers. They are favored for their simplicity, accuracy, and reliability. In most cases, a hefty price tag reflects superior materials and precision fit.In a category that can demand a five-figure entry fee, we wanted to see if we could get into the over/under club for substantially less. Toward that goal, we tested three new 12 gauges with walnut furniture: the $770 Remington SPR310S, originating from Russia; the $756 Mossberg Onyx Reserve Sporting, imported from Turkey, and the Spanish-made $1099 Lanber 2097 Sporting Lux.We sought to judge each shotgun on looks, fit, finish, and performance. To test the latter, we patterned each shotgun from the standard distance of 40 yards with an eye on shot density and how true our pattern stayed to point of aim. We patterned the shotguns with their Improved Cylinder chokes, which were common to all three. To check pattern density with the IC choke, we shot one target load and one field load. We chose Remingtons R12HD8 ShurShot Heavy Dove load, a 2.75-inch round with 1 1/8 ounces of No. 8 shot rated at a velocity of 1255 fps. For the skeet and trap range, we picked our favorite round, Rios TLT32. This was also a 2.75-inch round loaded with 1 1/8-ounce of No. 8s, but with one-half dram equivalent less powder. Velocity of the TLT32 was rated at about 1155 fps.To evaluate where the guns put their charges, we shot three rounds into the center of a patterning target with a 30-inch-diameter circle. We then divided the circle into four equal quadrants and read the pattern and calculated the pattern density. Here is what we learned.

12-Gauge Matchup: Stoegers Cowboy Gun Beats 870 Pump

Alot of people are buying shotguns for home protection these days. Theres a lot to be said for that, because a shotgun requires little training to be effective, the overall costs are relatively low, and the deterrent effect is on the awesome side, even though no shots may be fired. But what shotgun to get? What type and gauge is best? Thatll depend on your location and type of home to some extent, but there are some absolutes. Beginning with caliber, the 12-gauge has the most to offer in load variety, availability, and ammo cost. While there are good arguments for smaller calibers, particularly when light, young, or recoil-sensitive personnel may be using the gun, for this report we considered only the 12-gauge.We had never compared "police" shotguns with double side-by-sides, so decided to have a look at the two to see if there are obvious or perhaps hidden advantages to one type over the other. We chose a police-type Remington 870 Express Magnum Folding Stock, 12-gauge pump (MSRP $505) to test against a double SXS Stoeger Coach Gun, made in Brazil by E.R. Amantino (MSRP $369). Both had 3-inch chambers.Although the Stoeger had 20-inch barrels, it was 2.5 inches shorter at 36.5 inches overall than the 870 with its 18.5-inch tube. Of course you can fold the stock on the Remington to give an overall length of 29.3 inches and itll still be functional. We tested with three types of ammunition. These were 2.75" Federal 1-ounce #8 Game-Shok, 2.75" Estate 1.25-ounce High-Velocity Hunting loads, and with 3" Winchester XX Magnum 00 Buckshot (15 pellets). While the obvious difference between these two guns is many shots versus two, thats by no means the whole story. Lets take a closer look.

12-Gauge Matchup: Stoegers Cowboy Gun Beats 870 Pump

Alot of people are buying shotguns for home protection these days. Theres a lot to be said for that, because a shotgun requires little training to be effective, the overall costs are relatively low, and the deterrent effect is on the awesome side, even though no shots may be fired. But what shotgun to get? What type and gauge is best? Thatll depend on your location and type of home to some extent, but there are some absolutes. Beginning with caliber, the 12-gauge has the most to offer in load variety, availability, and ammo cost. While there are good arguments for smaller calibers, particularly when light, young, or recoil-sensitive personnel may be using the gun, for this report we considered only the 12-gauge.We had never compared "police" shotguns with double side-by-sides, so decided to have a look at the two to see if there are obvious or perhaps hidden advantages to one type over the other. We chose a police-type Remington 870 Express Magnum Folding Stock, 12-gauge pump (MSRP $505) to test against a double SXS Stoeger Coach Gun, made in Brazil by E.R. Amantino (MSRP $369). Both had 3-inch chambers.Although the Stoeger had 20-inch barrels, it was 2.5 inches shorter at 36.5 inches overall than the 870 with its 18.5-inch tube. Of course you can fold the stock on the Remington to give an overall length of 29.3 inches and itll still be functional. We tested with three types of ammunition. These were 2.75" Federal 1-ounce #8 Game-Shok, 2.75" Estate 1.25-ounce High-Velocity Hunting loads, and with 3" Winchester XX Magnum 00 Buckshot (15 pellets). While the obvious difference between these two guns is many shots versus two, thats by no means the whole story. Lets take a closer look.

12-Gauge Over/Unders: Silma, Browning, Beretta Go At It

We examine the Browning Cynergy Sporting, the Beretta 686 Onyx Pro X-tra Wood and the Silma Deluxe Model 70EJ.

12-Gauge Turkey Hunting Shotguns: H&K Versus Fausti Traditions

After we shot these 3.5-inch over-and-under turkey-hunting shotguns, we found we didn't like the specialized Heckler & Koch Fabarm Camo Turkey Mag and the Fausti Traditions Turkey II.

12-Gauge 3-in-Chamber Over and Unders: Ruger Vs. Charles Daly

The big boys in most duck and goose blinds have historically been the semi-automatics or pumps that can sling shells all over creation as hunters hammer incoming waterfowl.

Some hunters who have grown tired of plucking empty hulls out of their ears or watching shells fly across their field of view as they stand beside their shooting buddies are checking out over-and-under shotguns for their waterfowl scatterguns. Many have come to accept the fact that two quality shots are just as effective as three sky-busting blasts from a semi-auto or pump. More control of the ejected shells (over and unders kick hulls out over the shooter's shoulder, rather than to the side) is another bonus.

These waterfowl over-and-unders may not be the high-dollar, finely engraved firearms that can be found lovingly nestled in the arms of shooters on quail or clay target fields, but they are hard-working tools that get the job done. Two shotguns that have been recently introduced as potential waterfowl busters are the Ruger All-Weather Red Label Target Grey Model and the Charles Daly Empire II EDL Hunter AE-MC Model. Both of the over-and-under shotguns have 3-inch chambers and carry a price tag of under $1,650.

Affordable 12-Gauge O/U Shotguns: Two Spanish Imports Go At It

The best place to field-test any shotgun is on live birds, but because so much of our testing is done out of season, we only infrequently get to pop a cap at the real thing. However, we recently got to test two inexpensive over/unders on high-flying whitewing and mourning doves in Uvalde, Texas, and we came away with what we believe are some valuable real-world insights into the performance of these two guns.

Winchester and Franchi Duel in Affordable 12 Gauge Showdown

Finding an affordable over/under is getting easier to do, depending on what you mean by affordable. For many, the cutoff is at $1,000; for others, it's $1,500, and so on. For some, price is no object.

But everyone wants a gun they can shoot, and such a gun is worth its weight in gold, irrespective of what it costs. We recently had a chance to try two shotguns from U.S. Repeating Arms Co. and Franchi that held out hope of being good shooters that wouldn't break the bank. The guns were USRAC/Winchester's Supreme Field, which carries an MSRP of $1,383, and the $1,275 Franchi Alcione Field. Here's what we found:

12-Gauge Test: Norinco 99 Versus Baikal Bounty Hunter II IZH-43

The side-by-side has largely fallen from favor—witness the paucity of them in most companies' lines. But we test two inexpensive models to see what they offer the budget-minded shooter.

Remington Versus SIG: Which Over/Under 12 Gauge Is Ideal?

By name, it's the Remington, but it's a load to shoot. The SIG Arms Aurora is a faster, slicker product, in our estimation.

12-Gauge Shotguns for Field and Range: Buy the Browning Citori

In a head-to-head test of stack-barrel 12 gauges, we thought the Citori Lightning Grade I, $1,432, offered more bang for the buck than Ruger's $1,369 Red Label.

Classy O/U 12 Gauges: Bargain Shotguns For Only $2,500?

How much do you need to spend to get a really good O/U? Just this year someone bought a fine O/U .410, made by Woodward in 1940, for $200,500 at auction. He obviously thought it was worth it. But must you spend into five figures for a really good O/U? Probably not. Can you buy a really fine O/U for less than a grand? Again, probably not, though there are exceptions. If you can get a good O/U like a Ruger Red Label for around $1,200, why should you spend twice that? Things that might be important include fine wood, superior inletting, hand fitting of all metal and wood parts, engraving, better wood and metal finishes, superior balance and handling, and you take it from there. Only you can tel...

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