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 Post subject: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 4:50 pm 
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Location: CA. The land of fruits and nuts.
Hi guys. I'm new here so I hope you'll excuse me if this is a dumb question or if it's been asked alot. Basically I'm looking to buy a new semi-auto shotgun and I want to know which is better a gas system or inertia system? I've heard that inertia systems are cleaner but recoil more, and gas systems require more maintainence and have more parts to break. Is one system generally more reliable with a wide variety of loads compared to the other? I'm looking to spend around $500 and plan to mostly use the gun for shooting sports. Right now I'm considering the Stoeger 2000 (inertia) and the new Weatherby SA-08 (gas). I would also be open to used guns like the Remy 11-87, Beretta A390, or a used Benelli. I'm not really interested in a pump, I think they're probably a little to slow for Skeet and Sporting Clays. If I got the Stoeger I would plan to install a Limbsaver pad on it to help with the recoil. So, which system would be a better choice for what I want? Or does it matter? Which of the guns that I mentioned would you most recommend? Is there another gun I should consider as well? Thanks.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 4:57 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2008 4:34 pm
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Location: Rogers MN
I have both a benlli montefeltro and Remington 1100. the benlli is much cleaner and I have not really noticed the recoil with it. I have not shot the Remington because it is pink and my sisters. But she says that it unnoticeable (but it is in 20ga and she is like 11-12) hope that helps.

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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:15 pm 
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Based on my experience with an M1S90 Beneli (purchased in 1994) and a couple of 391s:

The Benelli wins hands down in the cleaning department. Clean once a year, whether it needs it or not. It probably won't unless you kick sand & gravel into the action (don't ask).

The Beretta gas guns shoot softer. Whether it's 10% or 20%, I dunno, but it's noticeable to me. If it were not, I would be shooting a Benelli for high volume Clays.

Both have way less perceived recoil than an O/U.

If you are younger (I'm not), and are absolutely sure that a little more recoil will not matter (to me, it does), get the Benelli.

Both can and should be near 100% reliable after some break-in. Some are not, without some work. (A reduced power recoil spring is sometimes needed in the Benelli and a carrier replacement is sometimes needed in the Beretta.)


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:25 pm 
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Location: Cedar Park, Texas
I have a Beretta ES-100 (Inertia) and a Beretta Xtrema 2 (Gas) and I have shot several Benelli SBE 2s. I prefer the gas for a regular gun but I don't mind cleaning them, not that the X2 requires anyover the top maintenance.

The inertia gun is easy to clean until you get to the recoil spring in the stock which is not fun to get to but does not require it very often unless your stock gets wet.

Go to a gun range and talk to people about their guns and I'll bet they let you shoot them and see what you like the best.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:29 pm 
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Worc ... paging Dr. Worc...Dr. Worc on Line 1, please

Personally, I dig the inertia-operated Benellis.

I only enjoy gas if I've got someone around who will pull my finger.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:31 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2004 8:24 pm
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Location: central PA
I own both and honestly can't recommend one over the other. Both have their place in my case I have a 20 ga Remington - gas operated and a 12 Ga Benelli inertia. Both shoot well and are well designed you can get years of service from either one. I can't speak about the reliability of a Stoeger however.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 6:49 pm 
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Location: Wet Side of Washington
I own a couple of gas guns (no intertias yet) but have several partners that use inertia guns in the duck blind. I carried an M4 my second tour in Iraq until we figured out they would not cycle less than lethal ammo and went back to the Mossberg 500s.

I do not shoot much skeet (I should considering my score in the duck blind) but I prefer the gas guns when I do. With proper maintenance the gas guns are great.

I did notice slightly less recoil with the gas guns but they tend to be heavier than the recoil operated guns (more parts). Unless you plan on shooting several hundreds of rounds without cleaning do not really see a big advantage to the recoil guns.

I have a 20 ga 1100 Featherweight that I love but it does seem to recoil less than my partner's 20 ga uber light Benelli. Of course my 1100 weighs almost 2 pounds more than the Benelli.

The only time I have seen issues with gas guns is in below freezing weather. When we duck and goose hunt on the Pot Holes the weather can be right frigid often in the low teens. After a few days of hard hunting and less than ideal maintenance some of the gas guns will start to balk - short cycle, stove pipe, etc. Also if you are over zealous with the gun oil it can freeze in the gas works and gum up the gun.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 8:12 pm 
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I definitely prefer a gas semi auto. If I prefferred low maintenace and getting kicked, I'd shoot a pump. In fact, sometimes I do. Waaaaay cheaper than a Benelli. For clay pigeons or doves in a 'T'-shirt, ot ground pounder magnums in a duck blind, I usually go with the gas auto. Sometimes for geese where I won't shoot as much or informal light trap I'll use the pump so I don't bounce shells off the other guys.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 9:17 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2008 1:47 am
Posts: 60
Location: CA. The land of fruits and nuts.
Thanks for the responses. It sounds like the gas guns are more popular. I've only ever shot one gas gun and that was a used Beretta A390 that a friend loaned me. I thought the recoil was very mild. I did have a couple of FTE's with it though. Might have been dirty, I don't know. I've never fired an inertia system gun. I think I need to go to the range this week and rent one, or two or three to find out what I like.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 10:13 pm 
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I don't think either is really any better than the other as long as they are both well made and good designs. They do each have their own advantages and disadvantages.

Here's a link with a few more details.

http://www.shotgunworld.com/bbs/viewtop ... c&start=15


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 10:30 pm 
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Neither is inherently "better" than the other. The Browning A-5 is inertia and it was in production for almost a century. I have two. They work great. I also have a Beretta AL 390--gas operated. It works great too. Find a well made auto that fits and feels good and go for it. It won't make any difference if it is gas or inertia operated. That distinction should be way down on the list of important things to look at when deciding which gun to buy.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 11:21 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 7:24 pm
Posts: 7
Location: Albuquerque
There is one nicety of detail to (possibly) take into consideration. All inertia guns are not the same; they now come in different flavors that can affect the perceived recoil.

I went to an inertia gun due to my inherent laziness -- I just plain am not interested in cleaning a gas operated gun. During my "testing" period (stunning how shotgunners are willing to just hand over their weapons and let you fire a few shots!), I was given the opportunity to try the Benelli SBEII with the ComforTech stock and was amazed at the difference between that model and the other Benellis that had a "standard" stock.

When you have the opportunity to field test, pay attention to the specific models you are using; not all Benellis are the same (not all Brownings are the same, etc).


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 11:29 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2008 1:47 am
Posts: 60
Location: CA. The land of fruits and nuts.
Thanks for the link Worc, very informative. I tried to do a search before I posted this thread but for whatever reason failed to find that one.


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 Post subject: Re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2008 12:08 am 
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Greg F. wrote:
Hi guys. I'm new here so I hope you'll excuse me if this is a dumb question or if it's been asked alot. Basically I'm looking to buy a new semi-auto shotgun and I want to know which is better a gas system or inertia system?


I guess it is a popular question. John Browning invented both the recoil action auto and the gas action auto.

The question of "better" really has no obvious answer, of course. If one was obviously, clearly, rationally, substantially "better"-- no one would buy the other.

The notion of reliability comes up a lot. It is worth considering that the major military small arms rifles of the day (and historically) such as the M16, M1A, M1 Grarand, AK-47, the SKS and on and on are gas-operated. Clearly, a soldier in harm's way has a lot more vested interest in non-malfunctioning arms than the guy that seeks to crack of piece of clay on a Sunday afternoon.

The "problem" with many notions of reliability is that it is not really "reliability" that is the subject matter-- it is reliability with neglected, poorly maintained firearms. If you are the type that really doesn't care to ever clean a gun, inspect them, or perform reasonable maintenance . . . both are unreliable, or can be. You might be better off with a pump gun that will operate until you let enough carbon (or rust) build up to impair smooth cycling.

The other end of the spectrum is expecting "reliabilty" with poor shells, sloppy reloads, etc. If shotshell concentricity is a problem, double guns have a bit of an edge, as they can fire most everything than can be crammed into the chamber. Even if the ammo is so poor that a blooper or misfire is plausible, a mechanical triggered double gun cycles to the next barrel for you.

Another "issue" is reliability with "what load"? A standard field and target 12 ga. load is an 1-1/8 oz. load at about 1200 fps. There is reliability within suggested load parameters, then there is the fellow that takes a 12 ga. designed for a diet of 1-1/8 oz. to 1-1/4 oz. payloads shells, wants to shoot 20 ga target load (7/8 oz.) loads through it, and calls the gun "unreliable."

From a use perspective, at least my use perspective, it is hard to get more reliable than the A302 / A303 / B-80 action, at least my B-80 with over 100K through it with NO parts replacement other than recoil springs would seem reliable enough.

I feel the same way about A-5's--------- generations of use with only a couple of friction piece replacements.

One is recoil, of course, the A-5, with the 300 series Beretta action being gas. Both are as reliable as the other.


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 Post subject: Re: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2008 2:00 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2007 8:15 pm
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Location: Western Washington State, USA
Greg F. wrote:
Thanks for the link Worc, very informative. I tried to do a search before I posted this thread but for whatever reason failed to find that one.


A possible tip on the search system here. Be sure to click on the all button.

gas inertia as the search terms and click on "Search all Terms" button


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2008 3:44 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2008 1:47 am
Posts: 60
Location: CA. The land of fruits and nuts.
Thanks Tangarm. I tried doing the search the way you recommended and had much better results.


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 Post subject: re: Which system is better gas or inertia?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2008 8:23 am 
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This can be argued for sure, but in short.

A gas gun will recoil less but requires regular cleaning to keep them operating properly.

A recoil operated gun recoils a bit more sharply, but requires less cleaning.

Since I clean after every shoot, I shoot the softer recoiling gas guns. I can not remember the last time I had a FTF.

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Very Funny Scotty, now beam up my clothes!


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