This model has probably won more Sporting events than any other gun and has had very few changes since its launch.
In its heyday the 682 Sporter scored winning performances at the very top level, in the hands of aces such as George Digweed and Barry Simpson, while trap and skeet versions won their fair share of top-level victories, too.
I bought one of these guns in the mid-1980s. Whilst it was the best-engineered gun I have ever owned in some other aspects I found it disappointing.
I felt it was heavy and not particularly responsive in handling and so I didn’t keep it long. The mistake I made was buying one when it was launched because Beretta then improved it immensely.
A minor change to the guide rods on which the coil main springs run solved a small reliability problem. The woodwork was also streamlined.
The barrels now have the maker’s wider ‘Optima’ bore and their ‘Optimachoke’ multichoke tubes to match.
Choke tubes can be either flush-fitting or extended.
The gun now feels lighter and livelier although most new guns still weigh in at around 7lb 15oz, which puts them on the slightly heavy side for Sporters.
Depending on the model and its age, actions can be bright silver or black, but all have relatively simple engraving.
The current gun is the 682 Gold E, of which there are Sporting, trap and skeet models.
Sporters and trap guns are available with adjustable stocks at extra cost.
Sporters are all multichokes, while trap and skeet variants are fixed. There never has been a 682 field version.
- Typical Beretta action, with high-mounted fork-shaped bolt engaging with holes in the barrel monobloc. Spring-loaded ejectors.
- Single, selective trigger (most are adjustable) operated by inertia system (although some early Gold E models have a mechanical system); barrel selector built into safety thumbpiece.
- Barrels (all multichokes) are 28, 30 or 32 inches. All barrel tubes internally chromed, and late models all have 3in (76mm) chambers.
What’s good about it?
- Well engineered, enduring design.
- Excellent competition pedigree.
- Reliable, long-established importer.
And what’s not so good?
People with a small frame may find the gun slightly heavy
What will you pay?
Pay £1850 or less for a really good second-hand example but remember competition shooters fire a lot of cartridges, so beware of super-cheap bargains.’
Excellent competition pedigree