side by side shotgun

Is the side-by-side shotgun history?

“Snobbery and inheritance are the only reasons why people use a side-by-side.” So said one keen Shot, once described as the best of his generation. “But I’m not that bothered. I just like to shoot straight.” Once upon a time, the side-by-side was the only gun to use. Turn up for…

Northern Shooting Show

20 popular second-hand all-rounders

If your budget is £750 and under Baikal This is one of my top 10 guns built in the last half century and it’s cheap, reliable with the Baikal reputation for toughness. On most over-and-unders the ejectors can be turned off, and firing the top barrel first is selected by…

Browning 725 Hunter UK Premium II

Browning 725 Hunter UK Premium II reviewed by Shooting Gazette

Apparently, for any product to truly be a success in this day and age it seems it must be offered in a bewildering array of models and specifications. Take technology giant Apple, for example. Once known for making a few uniquely stylish products to exacting standards, in 10 years its…

The Beretta 690 Field I shotgun

Beretta 690 Field I shotgun reviewed by Shooting Times

When a gunmaker is established with a strong following, there still arises from time to time the need to bring something new to the market. There are three possible routes. First, something new and revolutionary that could be a great success or could offend previously loyal customers, for shooters are…

Miroku MK 60 Sporting Grade 5

Miroku MK 60 Sporting Grade 5

One of the very great pleasures of reviewing shotguns (aside from the obvious) is the experience of visiting Elderkin and Son in Spalding. Not just because I am sure of a comfy spot on the sofa and a cup of tea, but because I get to watch so many people going through the process of buying a shotgun from…

Browning B725 20-bore Hunter LIght

Browning B725 20-bore Hunter Light

The B725 is a continually evolving platform that Browning is using to develop an ever increasing range of guns with. The 20-bore version has come out of the last two to three seasons. One of the later editions is the new Hunter Light. The 725 is the natural successor to the 525 series, which itself was preceded…

Benelli 828U 12-bore

Benelli 828U 12-bore

With this series of guns, Benelli has cast aside convention. A newcomer to over-and-under guns, the company has previously been more concerned with the manufacture of semi-automatic shotguns, an area where it also broke the mould with its patented inertia drive system. Benelli’s semi-autos don’t use the pressure of the charge in the barrel to cycle the bolt (gas operation),…

decoration on Lincoln Vogue

Lincoln Vogue over-and-under 20-bore

Is appearance important? Of course it is, especially when it is your shotgun, your pride and joy, whether family heirloom, sought-after second-hand model or brand new “just out of the box”. But beauty is always in the eye of the beholder and what suits one owner may not appeal to another. There are certain basics that most shooters…

over and under shotgun

The rise of the over-and-under

On a shoot day in October I had a fascinating conversation with a fellow gun about his switch from a side-by-side to an over-under. After more than 30 extremely successful years of game shooting with the former, he decided the time had come to seek out even greater consistency, particularly on the high birds, and make the switch.…

What to do in closed season?

What’s the best cartridge load for standard driven pheasants?

Q: As we move towards the pheasant season can you recommend the best cartridge load for standard driven pheasants, and I don’t mean 60-yard skyscrapers? A: I think cartridges are very much a personal preference and I would say that whatever gives you confidence when you are shooting is the correct cartridge for you. Shooting is a mental game…

pigeon shooting

Choosing the right shotguns and cartridges for pigeon shooting

What type of gun for pigeon shooting? Over-and-under The over-and-under is my preference for pigeon shooting because the design aids the shooter. You have a single sight plane, which naturally takes your vision out to the bird. The pistol grip ensures you grip the gun properly and aids in absorbing recoil. It’s far more versatile with…

Rizzini Artemis 16 bore

Rizzini Artemis 16 bore

As many experienced shots will know, quite a number of manufacturers engrave the name Rizzini on the actions of their guns thanks to the fairly astonishing abilities of a modern Italian gunmaking dynasty. There is E. Rizzini, once best known for making entry-level guns but now a part of Fausti, a high-end manufacturer.…

choke

Fixed chokes or screw-in chokes? What’s best?

A: Personally, I don’t think that most of us shoot well enough to get any real benefit from choke. Consequently, I would always go for fixed chokes and ones that were very open. However, if you become a very good shot, then screw-in chokes may help. The first wave of screw-in chokes…

Franchi Alcione One

Franchi Alcione One

This new Franchi Alcione One O/U has thrown itself into the market place for the under £900, with a price of £865. And on initial viewing, they have not done a bad job either. As a gunmaker, I would struggle to supply a block of wood for that price, though…

Boxall & Edmiston Round Action

Boxall & Edmiston Round Action

When one thinks of a British gunmaker certain factors will push to the forefront of one’s mind thanks to the history any great marque builds upon. The name is a reminder of what you are buying into, and it is no coincidence that over the years new starters have resurrected the names of long-defunct gunmakers, hoping that history will rub…

man holding shotgun

One gun fits all

The telephone at shooting schools invariably starts to ring more frequently once the first pheasant shoots of the season are behind us. Right now mine is busy with shooters trying to find answers as to why their early outings have not met with the success they had expected. I’ve asked…

Lanber Sporter

Three good value over-and-under Sporters to buy secondhand

Lanber Sporter – target price £500 All guns eventually go out of production, but the saddest loss of recent years has been the Spanish-built Lanber. The basic design goes back to the early 1970s and the gun had been for sale in small numbers in the UK, but it wasn’t until…

Side-by-side shotgun

Should I shoot game birds with a side-by-side or over-under?

Tradition will always be on the side of side-by-side shotguns despite over-unders growing in popularity in recent years as more people enter game shooting via the clay shooting route. But don’t be afraid to go back. Edward Watson explains why those who use over-under shotguns shouldn’t be afraid to try…