Beretta EELL Combo shotgun: You can’t hide the fact that a steady number of people are now switching to smaller bore guns for game shooting, with the obvious choice being a 20-bore.
By why stop there?
Quite a few folk who’ve found the 20’s shot pattern to be equal – or even more effective – than a 12 are now giving the 28 bore a whirl and liking what they find.
Of course gunmakers haven’t been slow to pick up on the small bore craze and most cater for demand with bore-specific guns in their ranges.
Beretta is no different except that it also sells a 20/28 combination set.
Why? Well, instead of two guns a sportsman can now get away with just one stock and action, thereby saving money in the process.
The other beauty of this particular EELL offering is its balance. One big problem for most shooters is that they can’t switch from one gun to another and hope to shoot to their best straightaway.
It takes time to get accustomed to the different weight and balance of a gun. However this Beretta, when fitted with the 20-bore barrels weighs in at 6lb 5oz.
Pop on the 28-bore set and the weight goes up just another ounce – which means the handling is virtually the same whichever bore size you choose.
The reason the 28-bore is a fraction heavier is down to the use of a common action which means the smaller barrels have to be slightly fatter in the run up to the breech face of the gun.
However, thanks to the skill of the makers a sportsman should be able to switch from one set of tubes to the other and not experience a loss of form due to differences in weight.
Both multi choke barrel sets are 28in long with a narrow (6mm) ventilated top rib carrying a small brass foresight bead at the muzzle and solid side ribs.
What you do need to be aware of is that the 20-bore is chambered to take 3in (76mm) cartridges whereas the 28-bore is chambered to only take a maximum length of 23/4in (70mm).
Each barrel set has its own fore-end because the profile of the tubes are marginally different for each bore size.
However there’s no chance of getting confused here between fore-end and barrels thanks to each set being numbered in gold – No. 1 in the case of the 20-bore and No. 2 for the other.
The EELL has recently undergone some cosmetic changes with slightly different bouquets being used in the engraved scroll work, along with different game scenes.
Woodcock appear on both the left sideplate and underbelly of the action while pheasants adorn the right hand plate. As a matter of interest the engraving on the EELL is rolled on before being picked out and highlighted by hand to make each gun uniquely individual.
Pretty much the same goes for the woodwork which has been oil finished then treated to finely cut chequering on the fore-end, pistol grip and wood butt plate.
Stock length is 143/4in with fairly standard drops at comb and heel and a 2mm cast for the right-handed shooter. Each gun comes supplied in an ABS case with provision for both sets of barrels and fore-ends.
All EELL’s are good looking guns but this one really catches the eye thanks to its new style engraving.
Personally I would prefer to own two guns of different bore size but as a combination it works exceptionally well and will appeal to the sportsman who struggles to adapt quickly from one gun to another.
Build quality: 9
Value for money: 8
Contact: GMK on 01489 587500