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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, since this is a retriever site and some of us happen to have retrievers with us in the field, I felt that this would be the perfect site to pose such a question(s).

Has anyone used or owned or currently own any of the following shotguns?

Stoeger Semi-Auto
H&R Excel Auto
Charles Daly Auto
Remington 11-87

Why do you like or do not like the gun?

Do you prefer Semi-Autos or Pumps for Bird hunting?

Length of Barrel for waterfowl, 26, 28, or 30?

Chamber 3" or 3.5"?

I currently have two pump shotguns with 28' barrels, 3.5 inch chambered. Looking to get a semi-auto, I have heard good things and bad things about semi-autos in general and then manafacturer specific. Just wanted to see what the experts think.

Thanks in advance for the input.
 

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Semi-Autos

I do not know if I would classify myself as an expert....but I have hunted for about 25 years and thouroughly enjoy it. AS far as semi-autos go I would highly recommend the Benelli Super 90, or the Super Black Eagle. I know they are a little higher, but in my humble estimation you get what you pay for! I started with a Super 90 12 gauge and used it a couple of season and now I have switched to a Super 90 20 gauge and love it!!! I kill as many birds as I had before and it is about half the weight! Not only that but for upland there are several manufacturers of shells that make a really nice 3 inch "hot" pheasant load. Waterfowling is the same....we do a lot of field hunting and I use my 20 gauge and can still bring them down. AS far as the reliability of the guns are unbelievable they are awesome!!! They have a very fast action....you can get a lot of lead(upland of course) in the air in a hurry.

Aaron
 

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REMINGTON 11-87

I USE A 3 1/2 11-87. I HUNT WATERFOWL 45-50 DAYS OUT OF THE SEASON. ALL LAYOUT BOAT HUNTING, SO THE GUN TAKES A BEATING. NO PROBLEMS WITH JAMMING. TRY A PATTERN MASTER CHOKE TUBE. AND YOU GOT A GUN THAT WILL GRIND THEIR ASS.......


RICHARD
 

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I haven't shot one personally, but I have heard some bad reviews on the Stoeger's. They are made cheap and last accordingly. I shoot Berettas, they are more expensive, but you usually end up getting what you paid for. 1187 is probably the best gun for the money on your list. Good luck.
 

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I have been using Winchester Super X2 3.5" with a 28" barrel synthetic stock & matte finish for 6 years with a lot of shells thru it "Zero Problems". I would buy another one again for the money in a semi auto it?s hard to beat, but if I could afford it I would get Benelli Super Black Eagle.
 

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shot guns

When every other kid got a big wheel when they were five I got a bolt action 4-10. My choice for shot guns, I like my Browning white lightning over and under 26? barrel for doves, for water fowl, super black eagle 26? is hard to beat. It is very reliably and has never had a problem chambering any round. (Don?t try a 7/8 ounce load). The SBE is very easy to break down in the field if needed. But on the other hand, I have a Mossberg 12 ga I paid $180.00 bucks for from academy and use it when I am in salt water, not in a blind but ducked in behind any cover I can find including my dog. The gun is indestructible, wash it out with a water hose spray some oil on it and its ready for next time. The ducks/geese can?t tell the difference. Good luck. I bought most of my guns before kids and dogs showed up, now I have no money. If you have the cash, Super Black Eagle.
 

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jlboykin-

you are correct! i had a stoeger 2000 semi, it sucks. I shot a box of shells threw it and it busted! They are cheap in price, and are a cheap put together gun! you get what you pay for!
 
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ShotGunWillie said:
Okay, since this is a retriever site and some of us happen to have retrievers with us in the field, I felt that this would be the perfect site to pose such a question(s).

Has anyone used or owned or currently own any of the following shotguns?

StoegerSemi-Auto
H&R Excel Auto
Charles Daly Auto
Remington 11-87

Why do you like or do not like the gun?

Do you prefer Semi-Autos or Pumps for Bird hunting?

Length of Barrel for waterfowl, 26, 28, or 30?

Chamber 3" or 3.5"?

I currently have two pump shotguns with 28' barrels, 3.5 inch chambered. Looking to get a semi-auto, I have heard good things and bad things about semi-autos in general and then manafacturer specific. Just wanted to see what the experts think.

Thanks in advance for the input.
I don't know if this applies to the Daly auto's but I do know that they changed barrel configurations on the maxi-mag pumps and they will no longer function reliably with 2 3/4 inch shells. (Stovepipe something fierce so no second shot) It's something I would check before I spent any money on a 3.5 inch Daly of any kind at this point.

(Based on a statistical sample of 1 new style compared to 3 older style which functioned perfectly with 2 3/4 to 3.5 inch shells)
 

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ShotGunWillie said:
I thought Benelli manufactured their (Stoegers) semi-autos, and they are pretty much the same gun.
Benelli owns stoeger, but does not manufacture the gun. Remember the nickname for an automatic- Jamamatic. An auto that does not repeat is very frustrating. Of the ones you listed, the 11-87 is the only one I would consider reliable. With Autos you get ehat you pay for.

Franchi is the only low end auto that I have heard good things about.

Will
 

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ShotGunWillie said:
I thought Benelli manufactured their (Stoegers) semi-autos, and they are pretty much the same gun.
Benelli does make the stoeger, and to my knowledge they share the same rotary bolt, but the rest of the action is different. Same with the Franchi auto's. Like many others I prefer my SBE to the many other scatterguns I've had. Relatively light, reliable and easy to maintain.

I had a CD Maxi-Mag auto for about a year and ended up trading it in. JUNK, JUNK, JUNK!!!! Lost count of the number of times I had to tear it down in the blind because of one malfunction or another. Also does not shoot 2 3/4" shells, where the Benelli will. The gun is very poorly made and it didn't take long to proove itself. Do a little searching on shotgunworld.com and you'll soon find varying opinions on them. I think inconsistency in quality would be the take home message.

Also be aware that Remington has just released a new line of 'more affordable' guns one of which is a 3.5'' auto. To my knowledge, all they have done is put their name on the Russian made Spartan line that they have been importing for several years. IMO also junk - cheaply made, manufactured and sold.

They may cost more but I think you'll be happier in the long run with a Benelli SBE or Beretta extrema. The Beretta is also a very reliable gun, but a bit more bulky than the SBE's. I've shot both and prefer the Benelli. I think one of the best ways to go is to find a good reputable dealer and buy a VGC used model. Due to both Benelli and Beretta releasing 'updated' models of both the SBE (SBE II) and the Extrema (Extrema 2), I have seen many barely used guns being traded in so guys can keep up in the latest technology. I bought both of my Benelli's used in great condition and have had no problems with them.

As far as barrel length is concerned I like 26". IMO I think they swing faster and point quicker. I know many guys that won't shoot anything other than 28", but the best way is to try them out and see what fits you best. I used to shoot a Mossberg 500 pump with a 24" barrel as well.
 
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I have a Benelli SBE 2. It is a very reliable gun. The only jam I have had is when I was shooting back over my left shoulder and I didn't have the gun shouldered solid and it didn't cycle the 3.5 shell properly.

My buddy has the 11-87 and the only thing about it is if it goes in the drink, it becomes a single shot until you can break it down and clean it thoroughly. The SBE 2, just dump the water out and keep on shooting.

I still prefer side x side over anything but my older sxs gun is not steel friendly.

Keith
 

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If that is all you are limited to, then go with the 11-87.
 

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I have shot a Franchi 612 for the last 4 years in the field. It has been a very steady reliable gun.I bought it for about $300 at a gun show...so it was a fairly cheap gun as autos go. It has only jammed on me once and the cause was not the gun but rather some rusty shells ( I had forgot to take them out of the boat). It was easy to break down and put back together.

My buddy shoots a 11-87 and it also has been a reliable gun in the marsh except when they get wet.

Just my 2 cents

KC
 

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I have a Charles Daly semi-auto and I like it. Still fires even after going through Hurricane Katrina. It's not my favorite out of my collection, but is trusty so far.[/img]
 

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Autoloader - Benelli SBE (matte finish wood with 26" barrel), hands down, best, most hassle free auto available. Bought mine in 1997 and have shot a boatload of ammo through it. Have a rifled slug barrel with scope for deer and is just as lethal/accurate as a rifle out to 170 yds. Mine has been soaked in mud/blood, wheat straw and water and still keeps ticking. The ducks absolutely hate it when I combine 1 part SBE and 3 parts Hevi-Steel 3" dueces!

Second choice for autos would be the Winchester Super X2. Very solid gun and from what I have seen, pretty damn reliable as well.

I would shoot a Rem 870 before I'd own an 11-87. Have just seen and heard of too many troubles to justify owning one. The other guns you mentioned are not worth owning.

Lastly, the best gun is the one that works the best for you.
Ask a buddy to let you shoot his for a day or go out to a sporting clay range and ask someone if you can squeeze off a couple rounds out of their gun. Then decide and go forward from there.

Travis
 

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The BEST gun for the money would have to be the Baikal/Spartan M153. They flat out work, and for 1/3 the price of a Benelli, Beretta, Winchester, or Browning.

The only problem with them to date is a strong propensity to get surface rust.

I love Beretta's, but the Xtrema is just too bulky. The Browning Gold in 3.5 gave my father fits for awhile, but I've got nothing at all bad to say about the Winchester X-2 (which is essentially the same gun as the browning).

I have only shot 1 Benelli, and found it to kick far more than I was used too, although I understand the SB II has pretty tame recoil.

I've heard to many horror stories about the 3.5 inch 11-87 and Charles Daly to ever recomend one, although the 3 inch 11-87 is a true work horse.

I'll assume from the 4 you've listed that money is a consideration. You can't go wrong with the Baikal or Spartan.

Good luck,

Todd
 

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Remington 11-87 Super Mag

It is a consistent gun when shooting and mounting to your shoulder. I know where it's always going to be when i shoulder it. It has a 28" barrel with a Briley extended choke tube in modified.

The 11-87 Super mag chambers all three sizes of shot shells 2-3/4", 3", 3-1/2". Never had problem cycling 2-3/4" 1 oz. loads followed by a 3" load.

It's been a little wet here the past few weeks and she keeps on workin'!
 

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ShotGunWillie said:
Do you prefer Semi-Autos or Pumps for Bird hunting?
Length of Barrel for waterfowl, 26, 28, or 30?
Chamber 3" or 3.5"?
Pumps and double barrels only.
Semi's are just too danged heavy and carrying them around all day long is a major drag (pun).

Personaly, I like the 26". Again - less to carry.

3.5 (but then, I goose hunt)
 

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CNBarnes, if you want a light shotgun try out the Franchi's...they all seem to be light as a feather.

On the topic of 3.5 v. 3 inch...you might as well by a reliable 3.5 inch gun and plan on shooting 2 3/4 or 3 inchers in it. Then if you get into a situation where you are pass shooting geese you've got the option of switching to 3.5 BB or BBB.

Whatever you do, don't get a 24 inch barrel if you expect to hunt with anyone else. They are much, much louder. I shoot both 26 and 28 inch barrels with no real advantage either way. IMO shorter barrels will make it harder for a novice shooter to learn how to swing well, although they are generally considered as a better "pointing" length.
 
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