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Beretta 687 EELL Classic

A new look for an old favourite gets the seal of approval from Mark Heath at West London Shooting School

Beretta 687 EELL Classic

Manufacturer: Beretta

Price as reviewed: £8,025

Beretta 687 EELL Classic gun

The Beretta 687 EELL is a gun that has been around in the shooting world for some years now. The action is tried and tested to infinity and beyond and it’s as well built as any action can be. There are thousands of 687EELLs in use with the Field version being the most popular among game Shots, both as single guns and matched pairs.

The Silver Pigeon is one of the go-to guns for game shooters; consequently, when clients new to shooting are asked what gun they are going to buy, they usually say a Silver Pigeon because it has been recommended to them. The EELL is for the game Shot who wants a Silver Pigeon with a little more decoration, but not so much that it is so cherished that it’s left in the cabinet on a wet day. It can and has been used for pretty much every form of shooting for some considerable time. So what’s all the fuss about? Everything about it is to do with the appearance. It’s the same reliable gun underneath, so if you want a plain workhorse look away now.

Beretta 687EELL Classic Scroll

d Which engraving would you choose for the sideplates: game scene or scroll?

Steel proofed

The Beretta 687 EELL Classic gun was released in 2020 in .410, 12-, 20- and 28-bore and is available with 28in and 30in fixed or multichoke barrels. There is a small premium for left-handed versions. The fixed choke is the usual quarter and half, the multichoke comes with the usual five HP choke options and all guns have 3in chambers and are proofed for steel shot. The stock measurements are pretty much the standard that we have come to expect from Beretta, with 145⁄8 in length of pull and 1⁄8in cast. The drop is slightly less than we normally get, with the measurements on the test gun coming in at 1¼in at the comb and 21⁄16 in at the heel. This drop measurement will, in my view, suit a lot of shooters. The stock has laser-cut chequering, which is comfortable in the hand and not too sharp, and comes with a rounded Prince of Wales grip, which is very slim in the hand – possibly too slim for those with large hands. However, this gun sits in the Beretta Premium bracket and you might therefore want to explore the option of a bespoke stock from the factory. If I were in the market for this model it is something that I would actively consider.

Beretta 687 EELL Classic

A new look for an old favourite

The gun weighs in at 7lb 7oz, a traditional weight for 12-bore over-under game guns, with the 30in barrels coming in at 1,452g, so not too heavy at all. The fore-end, like previous Classic versions in the Beretta range, comes with a beavertail style, which I prefer over the schnabel.

Beretta 687 EELL Classic

Beretta 687 EELL Classic


And now to the reason this gun sits in the premium category with a price around £1,500 more than the standard EELL. The appearance of the gun is just stunning. The wood is highly figured and the engraving a significant step up from the standard gun. The engraving is done initially by laser and then hand finished by Beretta master engravers. There are options around game scene or scroll engraving.

Is it really any different from the standard model? The answer is yes and significantly so. The model on test has pheasant and partridge game scenes on the sideplates with scroll on the underneath; there is also a plait engraving as a border around the sideplate which is very attractive.

This model comes with an extended and engraved trigger tang, and the Celtic scroll on the hinge pins and the fore- end release is also pleasing to the eye. The gun comes in a premium case, ABS with leather trim, which again is a significant step up from the standard model. ”Which engraving would you choose for the sideplates: game scene or scroll?

Lasting impressions

  • Engineering: The robust action has been in production for many years. It will last a lifetime and more with a little servicing and proper cleaning, especially if it gets wet.
  • Looks and finish: The aesthetics are exceptional, as are the finish and presentation of the gun.
  • Handling: This is an all-round game gun that will do the job exceptionally well in pretty much every arena. As previously mentioned in similar reviews, something heavier with longer barrels might be useful on the very highest birds, but you can hold your own with this model for sure. With the slimness of the stock the balance is a little forward of the hinge pin and the gun shoots very well, but I would put a little weight in the rear to adjust the handling – an easy task for any stocker.
  • Value: This is more expensive than the standard model, but you can see why the minute you pick it up. If you are looking for something that has that something extra in terms of style, appearance and finish this is a great option.
  • Customer service and reliability: No doubts in this department; the back- up and levels of service from GMK, the UK importer for Beretta, sit firmly at the top of the tree. ‘Beretta 687EELL

The gun isn’t too heavy, handles superbly and it looks sensational

Out on to West London’s towers

A visit to the towers at the shooting school confirmed that all is as expected and that the EELL Classic shoots as good as it looks with a variety of ammunition, both clay and game loads. There were no surprises and the fixed chokes delivered outstanding patterns. If I picked the standard stock my preference would be to have a little weight put in to bring the balance closer to the hinge pin. A better option, though, would be to choose the bespoke stock and have it balanced at the factory. I would have to wait for travel to open post COVID-19, but it would be worth the wait and I could choose my own wood.



The gun isn’t too heavy, handles superbly and it looks sensational