This pair of guns, with beautiful Italian styling, gives an idea of how good the custom-build versions will be, says Matt Hunt, reviewing for Shooting Times
There is a great buzz of excitement among our customers here at the Oxfordshire Shooting School about the upcoming Game Fair. For some it will be about catching up with friends, others will be enjoying a day with the family, and many will be having a look at all things new and shiny from the gun trade. A must-see at this year’s show will be the Perazzi High Tech S game model, launched just in time for the Glorious Twelfth.
As with all Perazzis, the new High Tech S game is being offered as a total custom-build and is bespoke in every minute detail. I make this point early in the review as this is undoubtedly the USP. However, I always have concerns when customers order Perazzi guns for the UK driven game market.
Perazzi’s strength in making competition guns is based on its unrivalled wealth of experience, knowledge and, above all, success in the competition market. Does it have the same level of expertise in building guns fit for driven grouse or extreme high pheasants?
Custom-building game guns is different to building competition guns and requires knowledge of the quarry and conditions. But Perazzi has embraced this challenge and is working with its dealer network to create a service that links the artisan gunmaker in Italy with some of the most experienced game Shots in the UK. The end result is the GB Perazzi Experience.
On ordering a new Perazzi High Tech S game, you will get access to the likes of Simon Ward, my fellow Shooting Times contributor Tom Payne, Adam Calvert and other highly respected game Shots. Through consultation, these brand ambassadors will assist you in creating a build specification for your new gun. You immediately see and feel the impact of this concept in the pair I have on test.
The guns are perfectly matched and identical in every respect. They have been built as universal driven game guns with 30in barrels, 3in chambers, fixed choked and 18.6 internal bore diameter. The top-rib is a 6mm parallel vented and the mid-rib is a three-quarter solid.
This configuration gave the guns a balance point forward of the pin yet, despite an overall total weight of 7¾lb, the guns don’t feel heavy. The Perazzi MX8, on which the High Tech is based, had the tendency to feel like a lump. The wider High Tech action has achieved a more refined balance, with the weight distributed between the hands perfectly. With lighter barrels, I could see its dynamics changing remarkably if a faster gun were needed.
The stocking of this Perazzi reflects its game gun design; the profile of the wood is slim in the body and the neck. This has allowed for a very slim grip, allowing the thumb to sit around the neck comfortably. There is a subtle palm swell that completes a comfortable grip. The fore-end, by contrast, is thicker than you would expect on a game gun but gives great control for steering the barrels.
Aesthetically the guns look first-class, with plain and unengraved black actions, black furniture and dark, smoky, highly figured wood. The guns have that simple style for which Perazzi is famous. However, engraving choices are endless.
Overall, the Perazzi High Tech S game is the coming together of technically advanced gun design, Italian family passion and style with unrivalled knowledge of UK game shooting. The end result could well be a gun that takes your shooting to the next level.
NEED TO KNOW
- Manufacturer Perazzi
- Model High Tech S game pair
- Calibre 12-bore
- Barrels 30in (18.6)
- Chamber 3in (76mm)
- Chokes Fixed choke
- Rib Vented top-rib with solid mid-rib
- Grip Full pistol
- Weight 8lb 6oz
- Importer Ruag Ammotec, 01579 362319
- Price £29,000
In January this year, I had the pleasure of shooting the Perazzi High Tech S Sporter and, despite my best efforts, I could not shoot it consistently. For consistently, read ‘accurately’.
I had great hopes that the game model would perform differently for me. It certainly feels a much faster-handling gun than the Sporter, with its slimmer stock profile and grip radius.
The shooting experience and operation of the gun were superb in every way and could not be faulted. Yet after 100 targets, I came away disappointed with my accuracy yet again.
Taking the gun to the pattern plate, I was certain it was to do with the drop measurement on the stock. The gun has a drop at heel of 1¾in and it definitely felt like it was shooting high for me.
Taking three shots from 25 yards, I was amazed to see that the pattern was a perfect two-thirds high and one-third low. However, the pattern was well over to the right of the centreline. In essence, the gun had too much cast for me and highlighted the bespoke and individual nature of the High Tech S game as well as the importance that should be placed on gunfitting and getting the correct specification to suit your individual style of shooting.
The Perazzi GB team will be the principal element that will take the High Tech S game from a good gun to a great gun.
- Action and barrels 19/20 You won’t find a stronger gun
- Handling 17/20 Just didn’t work for me
- Trigger 19/20 Factory-fitted auto safe, hallelujah’
- Stock 18/20 First-class finish and epic wood match
- Value 18/20 Added value through service is superb
- Overall score 91/100 A world-class gun in the right hands