Best British guns

British guns proofed for steel: it’s time to buy a bit of history

The late Cyril Adams, who made a fortune selling restored British guns to eager American buyers, recalled walking into Purdey’s one afternoon in search of old guns and being told there was nothing good in. (Read are English guns the best?) He noted a pile in the corner and asked…

steel vs lead cartridges

Steel vs lead cartridges: a pattern emerges

We now have the transition away from traditional lead shot that has served so well for so long and, I hope, will continue to do so, even if some areas are to be denied it. The topic chosen by Sporting Gun for me this month has been time-consuming, but it…

Steel shot vs lead shot – the hard facts about steel shot

Debate centred around steel shot vs lead shot is nothing new. When chatting with chums at the clay shooting club, or browsing internet shooting forums, it becomes clear that the current move away from lead shot for live quarry shooting is a hotly discussed topic. Somewhat surprising, given that we…

Caesar Guerini Maxum Gold

Caesar Guerini Maxum Gold Ltd 20-bore

Traditional styling The Caesar Guerini Maxum Gold Ltd is an upgrade on the already premium Maxum game gun. This new model has more traditional styling and attention to detail. The project was conceived by Anglo Italian Arms, Caesar Guerini’s UK importer. (Read our list of best gun slips.) The gun…

Jocker Bio ISO Steel

The Bio ISO Steel 27 cartridge from Jocker – it’s impressive

French company Jocker has become much better known in the UK in recent years and particularly so since its products have been distributed here by Shooting Star of Suffolk. Having gained a rising profile with its budget clay pigeon cartridges, which came at a very good price at a time…

small bore shotguns

Small bore shotguns: threatened by the demise of lead?

For the majority of us, our shooting journey is punctuated by different bore sizes. It is perhaps an accurate representation of our growth and development through life; we tend to strive to achieve bigger and better until old age sets in and we retract to comfort and contentment. Many young…

fleur-de-lys and CIP marks

Steel shot in old shotguns: time to make a decision?

I’m sure that by now most of you will have read at least one article regarding the demise of lead shot and its replacement with steel and other alternatives. And you will certainly have heard many opinions about the change, a change that is under way whether we like it…

Steel shot on pigeons with Geoff Garrod

Geoff Garrod is back on the pigeons. He is joined by Tony Bromwich, as the pair head out to protect the farm’s rape crop and discuss the future of steel shot. (Read will my gun be safe with steel shot?) Kit list Gun: – Browning Maxus Clothing: – Deerhunter Cumberland…

BioAmmo Blue non-toxic ammunition

BioAmmo’s non-toxic load

It is becoming increasingly evident how difficult the position cartridge companies have been plunged into is, following the rush to replace lead shot with non-toxic ammunition for game that enters the food chain. Note that nothing has actually been ‘banned’ as yet despite the language often heard when shooters discuss…

lead shot deadline

Why the lead shot deadline should be extended

One lesson most of us learn pretty early in life is to not make promises we can’t keep. Doing so risks credibility and trustworthiness. Failing to deliver on a personal assurance is always bad enough but nowhere near as bad as stupidly making one for other people. Yet that’s exactly…

Beretta 486 Parellelo

Beretta 486 Parallelo shotgun reviewed: a ‘little cracker of a gun’

At first glance, this month’s shotgun – the Beretta 486 Parallelo – may appear to be one for the diehard traditionalists – but look a little harder and you may be in for something of a surprise. Beretta 486 Parallelo is a little bit different Sitting as it does within…

Sustainable ammunition day

Why sustainable ammunition days are a superb introduction to steel shot

As the five-year transition to non-lead shot for live quarry shooting continues, BASC has taken the initiative and organised a series of Sustainable Ammunition Days around the UK. These workshops aim to provide accurate, honest and practical experience of lead-free ammunition for your shotgun on a simulated game layout. Shooters’…

Benelli Rafaello Academia Limited Edition 12 Bore

Benelli Raffaello Accademia semi-auto shotgun review

What makes the Benelli Raffaello Accademia semi-auto different?  The words ‘beautiful’ and ‘semi-automatic’ don’t get used together very often. Most semi-autos are plain. None of them would turn heads on the looks front. For example, the Benelli M2 is the workhorse of many gamekeepers because it offers rugged reliability, but…

Steel shot for pigeon shooting

Best steel shot for pigeon shooting: what’s recommended?

Some of the most highly experienced pigeon Shots I know of were discussing their preferred steel shot for pigeon shooting loads and their opinions blew holes in some of the received wisdom that we have in the public domain. There was no mention of bismuth nor any of the derivatives…

Eley VIP Steel Pro Eco

Steel shot vs lead – why I switched a while ago

Steel shot vs lead I suspect that most shooters realise that lead is dead. It’s only a matter of when. I am not going to reiterate the arguments for steel shot vs lead, they have been done to death. The inexorable tightening of the legal noose around lead was widely…

end of high birds

Is this the end of high birds?

Could the ruling on lead mean the end of high birds? In the early 1990s, when we had a voluntary phase-out of lead for shooting over wetlands, my old mate Charles Nodder and I had a little try with some steel cartridges out on the Medway mud. Being young and…

shotguns for under £1000

20 of the best shotguns for under £1000

Finding a gun at the right price can be tough. We’ve listed 20 shotguns for under £1000 here that we think are well worth a look, both new and second-hand. It’s also worth reading our advice on buying a shotgun second-hand where you might pick up a real bargain. If…

Eley VIP Steel Pro Eco

Eley VIP Steel Pro Eco – tested by Sporting Gun magazine

My expectations were not high when I tested the new Eley VIP Steel Pro Eco. But I was floored when I found that they were every bit as good as cartridges with lead shot.   I tried to be scientific about testing the new eco cartridges and used a pattern…