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TOP TEN CLAY GUNS MORE THOUGHTS - The Best Clay Guns in the World

Well, I promised this month to give a few more thoughts on my best top ten shotguns for clays as previously listed:

see the earlier article here

  1. Beretta Silver Pigeon I 32 – “a fabulous new gun with light weight barrels and a great spec at a great price”
  1. Browning 525 Sporter with the new back-bored, lightened, 30” barrels – “another superb new gun at an excellent price”
  1. Kemen Titanium 32 – “cost no object, this is the gun I would probably opt for”.
  1. Kemen KM4 32 MK II (with action narrowed to the rear) – “always a contender and excellent with barrels around 1550gms.”
  1. Perazzi MX8 and 12 – “the original long barrelled sporter, still superb for quality and a fraction cheaper than the KM4 – I would specify specify lighter barrels and make sure the stock was not too trappish.”
  1. Miroku MK38 32 Grade 1 – "another one of the world’s great bargains – great handling, great stock shapes, sensible barrel weight – just asking for Mr Teague’s chokes – you can’t go wrong with this one.”
  1. Beretta 391 30” sporter semi-auto with wooden stock – “another well priced winner. Still good value and my preference to some of the more recent Beretta semis. A superb soft-shooting gun.”
  1. Purdey Sporter – “quite evolved now and something to treat yourself too if the lottery numbers come up, I like both the 30 and 32” guns.”

I think you might describe the K80 as a ‘Marmite’ gun. You like it, or, you don’t. Those who like it, have done incredibly well with it in just about all disciplines. The sliding top-cover is intriguing as a design too (it wears in rather than out). And, it is good to know that you have the great experience of Alan Rhone behind the gun and it’s 20 bore variants. Alan is one of our top gunsmiths, as well as being a very successful businessman in the firearms field now. I have the greatest respect for him. When he does something, he does it well.

  1. Beretta DT10 – “Developed from the ASE, these guns are proven winners. I am not especially fond of the wide fences and extra bolting, but the build quality is excellent and the Opti-bored barrel versions really do the biz. These guns can be an excellent choice for serious lady shots too - as there is typically not too much weight forward.”

The DT10 is another gun that works, especially in the Opti-bore versions. I am not especially fond of the bolting arrangement, but, it does not seem to have put off Richard Faulds. I think some of the sporting stocks can be a bit thick and bit too steeply angled, but these are issues that can easily be remedied. Clearly the gun works, and works at the highest level. I put it down to barrel weight and good trigger pulls as well as generally sound Beretta engineering. It is not my favourite Beretta – guns are personal – but it deserves its place in our Top Ten.

Perhaps, I should have mentioned the Maxum side-plated model as well, not least because I shoot one (a 32” sporter which I use as game gun).

STOP PRESS There are some extra extra guns this month too...

 First, the Winchester SX3 semi-auto. I shot the Red Performance version of this recently – what was known as the ‘FlaniGun. ’ I was blown away by it in all positive senses! It is probably the best semi that I have ever shot for handling qualities and general usability. Lightweight AND soft-shooting, it is very user friendly and intuitive to use. It has a slightly raised rib which is not normally my thing, but it is another brilliant gun at a reasonable price. 9 ½ ex 10

And, in Ireland, I used a Breda 2000 Ermes auto. This was a real find and not generally available in the UK. It is a very well made inertia action (similar to Benelli ) gun. It is, moreover, a fabulous piece of kit. Inertia auctioned, perhaps, but, again, very soft in recoil. It is a superbly made gun, but the only drawback is that 28” is the longest barrel you can get. Nevertheless, I put a couple of thousand shells though one without any ill effects whatsoever (and did not bother to clean it until the test was complete). Not one stoppage and recoil levels like a gas gun. Someone should import these.








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