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 Post subject: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2021 1:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 28, 2021 1:13 pm
Posts: 5
Greetings All!

I am finally at a state where I can invest in a good auto loader. This will be an upgrade from my old Winchester Ranger 120. After doing a lot of research I was fairly confident that I would be picking up a Beretta a300. While helping my friend with a transfer at my LGS I noticed that they had a used AL 391 Urika 2 with synthetic stock for $700. It looks like a gun that was taken on a number of hunting trips but likely doesn't have a high round count. There is very little finish wear in areas where you would expect to find it in a high round shotgun, but there is dirt and grime in some of the small nooks and crannies. I am an experienced shooter and not at all afraid to take it apart and clean it.

My primary use will be clays with the occasional wetlands hunting trip. My question is, would the 391 be worth the extra $100-$150 over an a300?

Thank you for your help.




Last edited by candrshooter on Sun Feb 28, 2021 2:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2021 1:41 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 22, 2019 10:16 pm
Posts: 93
I can only speak for the A-300, but I know the 391 line has a very loyal following and you shouldn,t have any problem selling it if you decide to later on. I hear the A-300 is easier to clean, but you said you have no problem there. Can,t go wrong with either. They both are Beretta,s.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2021 7:31 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 05, 2007 9:44 am
Posts: 411
Location: Murfreesboro, TN
valencman wrote:
I can only speak for the A-300, but I know the 391 line has a very loyal following and you shouldn,t have any problem selling it if you decide to later on. I hear the A-300 is easier to clean, but you said you have no problem there. Can,t go wrong with either. They both are Beretta,s.


I agree with this opinion. Nothing wrong with either. The A300 is just a more recently manufactured and might be a bit easier if you need to find parts. Don't discount the 390 either. It was right before the 391 and is also just a little easier to clean. I have own all three of those mentioned as well as the 3901. Never had an issue with any of them if I did my part. Good Luck and let us know what you choose with a picture or two :)

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Last edited by Milkmaster on Fri Mar 05, 2021 12:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2021 8:13 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 15, 2004 1:56 pm
Posts: 1528
I would go with the 300. Newer, warranty, get a choice of barrel length, fixed some issues of the 391. What reason not to go with it?


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2021 9:15 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 26, 2006 9:04 pm
Posts: 1542
Location: Upstate NY
I have a 390, 391 and A300.

I have experienced rock-solid reliability with all three. I'd say the 390 and 391 are of a higher quality and have a better fit/finish. The 390 has a slightly simpler gas system. The A300 seems to be the best value/bang-for-the-buck.

I don't think you could go wrong with any of them...

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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 01, 2021 11:24 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2015 5:52 pm
Posts: 681
Location: Michigan
The A300 is every bit as good as any of the 300 series Beretta's. The A300 has less options (wood grades, barrel length, finish, 12ga only) than the previous models. IMO Beretta did this for two reasons, keep cost down and not cut into A400 sales. I would get the A300.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 01, 2021 11:39 am 
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Joined: Sun Feb 28, 2021 1:13 pm
Posts: 5
Thank you everybody! It sounds like no matter which direction I go, I can't really go wrong.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 01, 2021 1:54 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2018 10:16 am
Posts: 197
My suggestion would be for you to shoulder them both. The A300 Outlander (I assume that’s the one you’re considering) does come with shims and spacers to adjust to your fit. I doubt the 391 will. They have a very similar gas system. The A300 Outlander is very similar to the 390 and 391. However, the A300 does have what beretta calls a “self cleaning piston”. It basically has a ring that will scrub some of the carbon out of the tube when it’s fired. It does still fowl up and has to be cleaned occasionally, but it will run longer without requiring a cleaning. I have a 20 gauge 390 silver mallard, and an A300 Outlander. They are both great shotguns. I do know parts for the Outlander are easier to come by than for a 390 or 391, but All are very reliable shotguns.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2021 10:10 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2005 9:53 am
Posts: 658
Get the 391...you will be glad you did.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 6:52 am 
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Joined: Sun Nov 26, 2006 9:04 pm
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Location: Upstate NY
SHughes wrote:
My suggestion would be for you to shoulder them both. The A300 Outlander (I assume that’s the one you’re considering) does come with shims and spacers to adjust to your fit. I doubt the 391 will.


My AL391 came with a shim kit. Shims can be found easily and cheaply for a used 391 that might not include them.

Both guns offer the option of adjusting the fit with the drop/cast shims and different thickness recoil pads for LOP changes.

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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 7:41 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2018 10:16 am
Posts: 197
desmobob wrote:
SHughes wrote:
My suggestion would be for you to shoulder them both. The A300 Outlander (I assume that’s the one you’re considering) does come with shims and spacers to adjust to your fit. I doubt the 391 will.


My AL391 came with a shim kit. Shims can be found easily and cheaply for a used 391 that might not include them.

Both guns offer the option of adjusting the fit with the drop/cast shims and different thickness recoil pads for LOP changes.



The 391 hasn’t been made in years. Yes I was referring to the used 391 likely not having the kit, but I’m guessing the kit for the A300 will likely fit it. They are great guns, however, I do know parts for the 391 are scarce. A friend of mine has one and the choke is locked in the barrel. He has looked for a new barrel, but has been unable to find one. He has also looked for replacement parts for the kickoff, but hasn’t had any luck.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 8:28 am 
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Joined: Wed Nov 30, 2016 6:04 pm
Posts: 670
Unless you really love the 391 for some reason, go with the A300. Scrounging parts and repairing old shotguns can be fun, but it's a lot less fun when it's your primary gun. The A300 has a warranty and factory parts, the 391 is a great gun but if something does go wrong you're going to be down for a while.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 11:15 am 
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Joined: Sun Nov 26, 2006 9:04 pm
Posts: 1542
Location: Upstate NY
Win50 wrote:
Unless you really love the 391 for some reason, go with the A300. Scrounging parts and repairing old shotguns can be fun, but it's a lot less fun when it's your primary gun. The A300 has a warranty and factory parts, the 391 is a great gun but if something does go wrong you're going to be down for a while.


SHughes wrote:
The 391 hasn’t been made in years. Yes I was referring to the used 391 likely not having the kit, but I’m guessing the kit for the A300 will likely fit it. They are great guns, however, I do know parts for the 391 are scarce. A friend of mine has one and the choke is locked in the barrel. He has looked for a new barrel, but has been unable to find one. He has also looked for replacement parts for the kickoff, but hasn’t had any luck.


Good points that I guess I overlook, having never "worn out" any old shotgun parts or never not having a back-up...

In the cases I have wanted or needed parts for shotguns, I found it fairly easy to find them. But I was not without another gun to shoot while I looked/waited for parts. That's a big issue.

_________________
"The freaks can't be normally formalized, nor can we be formally normalized. What we want is complete weirdification."
KD2TTM
Member: NRA, New York Rifle and Pistol Association


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 11:19 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2018 3:03 pm
Posts: 175
I liked the fit and finish of the AL391 better than the newer A300.
Just my opinion.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 12:00 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2018 10:16 am
Posts: 197
desmobob wrote:
Win50 wrote:
Unless you really love the 391 for some reason, go with the A300. Scrounging parts and repairing old shotguns can be fun, but it's a lot less fun when it's your primary gun. The A300 has a warranty and factory parts, the 391 is a great gun but if something does go wrong you're going to be down for a while.


SHughes wrote:
The 391 hasn’t been made in years. Yes I was referring to the used 391 likely not having the kit, but I’m guessing the kit for the A300 will likely fit it. They are great guns, however, I do know parts for the 391 are scarce. A friend of mine has one and the choke is locked in the barrel. He has looked for a new barrel, but has been unable to find one. He has also looked for replacement parts for the kickoff, but hasn’t had any luck.


Good points that I guess I overlook, having never "worn out" any old shotgun parts or never not having a back-up...

In the cases I have wanted or needed parts for shotguns, I found it fairly easy to find them. But I was not without another gun to shoot while I looked/waited for parts. That's a big issue.

Shotgun parts are very hard to come by these days. The main reason I didn’t purchase a V3 this year is there are currently no spare parts available for it should something break. I went with a Versa Max Sportsman instead. The bolt assembly, return spring, and trigger group are interchangeable with Benelli. I don’t deny that the 391 is a great gun, however, it hasn’t been made since the early 2000s. Unless a particular part is interchangeable with an A300, you’re Likely gonna be out of luck.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 12:05 pm 
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Location: Colorado Springs, Co
For the same price you can get a NEW gun with a warranty.
A-300 all day long.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2021 10:10 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:59 pm
Posts: 481
Location: SC Lowcountry
The 391s did have an issue with the carrier twisting and giving failure to feed. Not all of them do this but it is something to be aware of if you want one or own one. This problem is easily remedied by installing a 390 bent carrier. The cost of the bent carrier kit runs around $85. I have two 391 Urika 2s and have had to replace the carrier on one of them. The other has started failing to feed on occasion so I’ll likely switch it out as well. I prefer the fit of the 391 to the a300, which I also own, plus a few a400s. As far as reliability goes, both models are very good. Fit and finish is better on the 391. You can’t go wrong either way.

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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2021 11:33 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 16, 2018 7:55 am
Posts: 859
I had a 391 and I currently own a A300, while I loved my 391, I shot it lights out, and it was a good gun for me, I really love the A300 I own, and I have actually thought about a A300 sporting as a rain/backup gun. We shall see, but the A300 is a great value and you won't be disappointed, as mentioned the 391 needs what's called a "twisted carrier" For whatever reason so many people buy them and then mess around with springs valves etc and there's no reason too.

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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2021 2:53 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 28, 2021 1:13 pm
Posts: 5
Thank you everybody for the input. I always love to see discussions like these. Currently I haven't made any decisions yet, mostly because I haven't been able to get my hands on an a300 to compare it to. I have seen a number of a300's sell used for around $600 in my area, but I have also seen them sell new for around $650 (which seems the way to go outside of a killer deal).

A bit more info on the 391. It appears to have all the original parts from the factory. It comes with 4 chokes, the shims, case and other expected accessories. It does not have a kick off, which would have been nice, but is largely a luxury.

At this point I am holding off on making a decision until I can get my hands on an a300. That or someone wants to trade their extra shotgun for the massive pile of 45 Super I am selling.


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 Post subject: Re: First semi a300 vs al 391?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2021 5:26 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2014 7:56 am
Posts: 841
Buy the A300. The guns are very similar, the a300 is a better deal.




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