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 Post subject: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Sun May 12, 2019 8:48 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 13, 2013 6:51 pm
Posts: 25
I am thinking of buying a Franchi Affinity Catalyst for my daughter for sporting clays. She currently shoots a Benelli Montefeltro 20 ga and her main problem is that she gets tired lifting the gun for a round of 100. The Catalyst looks like one of the lighter 12 ga guns. My concern is the website says it requires 1 1/8 oz 3 dram loads. Those are fairly heavy loads. Does anyone have experience with this gun and will it recycle reliably with lighter loads? Any other suggestions for a lightweight gun for women? She is about 5’3” and thin




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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2019 6:47 am 
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Location: Dallas, Texas
I feel for her, I had a Caesar Guerini Ascent several year ago that I loved, but it was just too heavy for me. By the end of a round of sporting clays I was exhausted. You might want to consider the women specific guns like the Syren line from Caesar Guerini (semi-autos and o/u) or the Blaser Intuition (o/u); there are others, those are just the ones I've personally owned and shot. An open secret is that if you buy the Caesar Guerini or Fabarms "compact" o/u guns, they are actually the same guns as the Syren's, just different decorations, but several hundred dollars cheaper. The semi-autos are reasonably priced and have gotten great reviews. Good luck to your girl and tell her to keep shooting. Mary Ann

PS: The Syren/Fabarms L4S has a clay specific model, it shoots 2 3/4 inch shells and a number of people have commented that they shoot one ounce loads in it.

PPS: It isn’t a gun, but one of the things I did do after the Ascent was get a nine pound padded weight bar and pretty much hold it straight out when I was watching TV or reading. It really helped.

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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2019 5:06 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Wed Mar 27, 2019 12:19 pm
Posts: 36
My wife shoots this gun in 20 ga., both for upland birds and sporting clay. She loves it! Frankly, I do too, as I shot it for 8 weeks when my O/U went in for warranty and found myself shooting as well as or better than with my own gun. It's very light for carrying in the field, very soft shooting, swings well and is seems to be very "pointable". For what it's worth, my wife is about 5'6". Not sure about the weight and recoil on the 12 ga.

Have you considered a 20 ga.? Except for perhaps the longest shots, the 20 has no problem hitting targets (full disclosure - we are both novice sporting clay shooters so wouldn't presume to advise anyone in this). It cycles light loads consistently and is easy to break down for cleaning. For me, I took a little time to get used to the spring-like sound of its "intertia system", but it was easy to ignore that once I started breaking clays :wink:

Good luck with your search!


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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2019 7:08 pm 
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Location: Dallas, Texas
Eric719 wrote:
My wife shoots this gun in 20 ga., both for upland birds and sporting clay. She loves it! Frankly, I do too, as I shot it for 8 weeks when my O/U went in for warranty and found myself shooting as well as or better than with my own gun. It's very light for carrying in the field, very soft shooting, swings well and is seems to be very "pointable". For what it's worth, my wife is about 5'6". Not sure about the weight and recoil on the 12 ga.

Have you considered a 20 ga.? Except for perhaps the longest shots, the 20 has no problem hitting targets (full disclosure - we are both novice sporting clay shooters so wouldn't presume to advise anyone in this). It cycles light loads consistently and is easy to break down for cleaning. For me, I took a little time to get used to the spring-like sound of its "intertia system", but it was easy to ignore that once I started breaking clays :wink:

Good luck with your search!


Great feedback! The only thing different I’d suggest is to stick with a 12 gauge, more versatile and a great range of soft shooting shells. MAJ

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'Where is the kaboom? There was supposed to be a giant earth-shattering kaboom!" Marvin the Martian


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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Tue May 14, 2019 10:12 am 
Field Grade

Joined: Wed Mar 27, 2019 12:19 pm
Posts: 36
MAJENKINS wrote:

Great feedback! The only thing different I’d suggest is to stick with a 12 gauge, more versatile and a great range of soft shooting shells. MAJ


Thanks, MAJ, I agree. Personally, I'm shopping for a 12 ga. for sporting. Just thought for the OP's daughter 20 ga. might be a consideration...

By the way, I've appreciated your experience and insights on these forums - very helpful to me and my wife and we started getting into shotgunning. Looking seriously at the CG/Fabarm guns thanks in part to your input. Thanks again!


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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2019 4:17 pm 
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Eric, thank you for your kind words. Clay shooting is something, considering how bad I am at it, that gives me a great deal of joy. And my journey to the guns I have now is probably a primer of what not to do. Since I spent ten years in law enforcement out of college, I was very familiar with hand guns, particularly the revolvers that were the issue guns back in the 1970s and early 80s, but knew nothing about shotguns (other than the Itacha pump that had been issued to me by the GBI). I followed my sister's lead (after 58 years I should have known better) and bought a Beretta Silver Pigeon I in 28 gauge, a field gun. Since I don't reload and was taking lessons at the time, it was quite expensive to shoot. I was disappointed to realize after a few months that the guys following me around picking up my hulls were not tidy gentlemen enamored of my charms, but reloading scavengers. My next gun, because I bought into the belief that a 12 gauge was too much for a woman, was another Beretta, this one a 26" barrel 20 gauge field gun. It packed quite a wallop. I finally recognized I actually needed to ask someone WHO WAS NOT SELLING GUNS what I should get. So in 2010 I asked my then shooting instructor, "what is the best mid-priced gun you would recommend." Without a moments hesitation, he said 'Caesar Guerini." Now this is a guy who was a Beretta sponsored shooter and whose personal dream gun was a Blaser F3. And this was the early days of Caesar Guerini, when shotgunworld.com was full of comments questioning CG's reliability.

I ordered my first CG, a 20 gauge Summit Ltd., and went to Maryland to pick out the wood. It was a lovely trip. The later annoyance was that the feature in the stock that most attracted me, an "eye of Horus," disappeared when I had the stock cut to put a Bumpbuster on the gun. I shot that gun for several years, and eventually sent it in for 28 and 410 barrels--something I did before I figured out how incredibly boring I found shooting registered skeet (remember, not very good will never be in a shutoff).

About this time I was reading some books by Michael McIntosh, a truly lovely author whose passion for shotguns oozed from every line he wrote. He posed the question (one I think was echoed by Randy Wakeman in a column once) "what is the most versatile gauge?" His response to his self-posed question was the 12 gauge. He explained that the 12 can take on the characteristics and function of every other gauge merely through the choice of shell. He told a story about shooting at one of the great south Georgia quail plantations with his 12 and another shooter, who obviously didn't know who Mr. McIntosh was, sneeringly commenting that he must be planning on massacring birds. Mr. McIntosh said he just smiled, not telling the guy that what he was shooting were self-loaded shells with only 3/4 of an ounce of shot; a load that was likely less than the commentator was shooting in his 20 gauge.

Anyhow, to make a long story longer, that comment lead me to buy a 12 gauge CG Summit when I saw one used at Cabela's (a store you might remember that used to focus on guns). I shot that gun for a number of years until I got the CG Ascent (too heavy for me), that was sold and financed the purchase of my current favorite gun, a Syren Tempio 12 gauge. The CG Summit 12 gauge now lives with my friend James, who got the stock re-lengthened and the kaput Bumpbuster replaced with a Gracol.

While a 20 gauge Syren is in my gun safe, my go-to guns are the 12 gauges, primarily the Tempio or occasionally the Blaser Intuition. I find that the weight is such that I can handle it, and the greater range of shell options gives me less felt recoil than the 20 gauge. After all the tweaks I had to do to get previous guns to shoulder properly, both the Tempio and the Intuition came naturally to my shoulder. I have gone against the current grain by getting my guns with 28" barrels instead of longer ones. This suits me fine and makes it easier to find my gun on the rack at a shoot. I am almost 69 years old, my favorite exercise is sitting down, and my favorite gun is a properly fit 12 gauge shooting a one ounce load going out at under 1200 fps.

Of course, just because I have found my perfect gun doesn't mean the checkbook has closed. I'm getting a semi-auto 12 gauge, the L4S, I just need to get down to Austin to pick it up. It makes me a little nervous to push the comfort zone of what is familiar to me, similar to when this ex-law enforcement wheel gun lover got a Glock; I kind of walked around it cautiously for a few days until I was sure it wouldn't bite. But a little discomfort, especially for the gloriously retired like me, is a good thing. Now I just need enough time stitched together without medical issues (since 2012: kidney donor, hernia from kidney donation, three rounds of foot surgery to correct problems where woman with baby carriage ran over my foot after first round of foot surgery) to shoot all my 12 gauge pretties and claw my way from bad to mediocre. And I need to decide what to do about the 20 gauge, it's mean to leave a gun in the safe all the time. Mary Ann

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'Where is the kaboom? There was supposed to be a giant earth-shattering kaboom!" Marvin the Martian


Last edited by MAJENKINS on Thu May 16, 2019 6:22 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2019 1:25 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sat Apr 20, 2019 2:19 pm
Posts: 160
Location: Second star to the right and straight on 'til morning.
MAJENKINS wrote:
An open secret is that if you buy the Caesar Guerini or Fabarms "compact" o/u guns, they are actually the same guns as the Syren's, just different decorations, but several hundred dollars cheaper.


Hi Mary Ann, just wanted to mention that when I was researching these both for my wife, there was slight difference between the CG Summit Compact and Syren Tempio Sporting.
The Syren has a drop at comb of 1.37" vs 1.5" for the Compact. Additionally the Compact has Schnabel forend vs. a Rounded one for the Syren. Neither of these would stop me from buying the CG Compact however. Also, one last not-quite scientific difference was in the grip radius which is smaller on the Syren when I evaluated pics of each gun overlayed on one another in Photoshop as there was no grip radius info anywhere. I find this to be one of the hard stops on gun purchases since there really is no way to adjust the grip length unlike the LOP which is fairly easy to work around. That said, was it significantly different -- only trying it out in hand is going to tell.

We did end up with a Syren Tempio Sporting but only because it's available in a 20ga (and used which you NEVER see since everyone loves these guns so much) which is what she wanted to shoot and the Compact is only available in a 12ga.


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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2019 2:50 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Wed Mar 27, 2019 12:19 pm
Posts: 36
MAJENKINS wrote:
Eric, thank you for your kind words. Clay shooting is something, considering how bad I am at it, that gives me a great deal of joy. And my journey to the guns I have now is probably a primer of what not to do...

Of course, just because I have found my perfect gun doesn't mean the checkbook has closed. I'm getting a semi-auto 12 gauge, the L4S, I just need to get down to Austin to pick it up. It makes me a little nervous to push the comfort zone of what is familiar to me, similar to when this ex-law enforcement wheel gun lover got a Glock; I kind of walked around it cautiously for a few days until I was sure it wouldn't bite. But a little discomfort, especially for the gloriously retired like me, is a good thing. Now I just need enough time stitched together without medical issues (since 2012: kidney donor, hernia from kidney donation, three rounds of foot surgery to correct problems where woman with baby carriage ran over my foot after first round of foot surgery) to shoot all my 12 gauge pretties and claw my way from bad to mediocre. And I need to decide what to do about the 20 gauge, it's mean to leave a gun in the safe all the time. Mary Ann


This is wonderful, Mary Ann! Thank you.

As a new member to SGW (and shotgunning), I have truly appreciated the generosity, good will and expertise of the members here, such as yourself, Randy Wakeman and others. One member has even offered to let me shoot his A400 Xcel after he found out I was interested in this gun :D

While my journey has differed a bit from your own, it's interesting that it is leading to something of a similar destination (which I'll get to shortly)...

Last summer, my wife and I got interested in seeing how well our already birdie dog could do with some training. After several days in Nevada with Brad Higgins (who is amazing, by the way), we had ourselves a true, junior gun dog. At some point, we realized we needed to hold up our end of the bargain and actually hit some of the birds she found and flushed, so we were off to the range. It was there I realized that, like you, clay shooting is something that brings me a lot of joy (when it's not frustrating the heck out of me). I've always seemed to gravitate towards difficult sports/activities (golf, fly fishing, mountain biking), but I think I've found the winner now. There is something amazing about the magic that comes together when mind gets out of the way of brain and body, and the target gets big as the moon and just as slow.

Anyway, I've been bitten. Good thing I like to practice.

Where our paths converge a bit is my interest in the L4S. I'm hoping to be able to shoot one of these as well as the Beretta, and then I'm pretty sure I'll know.

I've never read Michael McIntosh, but I will look him up now. However, I doubt I will enjoy his prose as much as your own. Thanks again.

P.S. If you really feel bad about your 20 gauge languishing in your safe, my wife (who I think should be carrying an O/U in the field with the dogs), could probably help you feel better about it. Happy to help a friend :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2019 4:39 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2009 11:53 am
Posts: 1088
Location: Dallas, Texas
gentofleisure wrote:
MAJENKINS wrote:
An open secret is that if you buy the Caesar Guerini or Fabarms "compact" o/u guns, they are actually the same guns as the Syren's, just different decorations, but several hundred dollars cheaper.


Hi Mary Ann, just wanted to mention that when I was researching these both for my wife, there was slight difference between the CG Summit Compact and Syren Tempio Sporting.
The Syren has a drop at comb of 1.37" vs 1.5" for the Compact. Additionally the Compact has Schnabel forend vs. a Rounded one for the Syren. Neither of these would stop me from buying the CG Compact however. Also, one last not-quite scientific difference was in the grip radius which is smaller on the Syren when I evaluated pics of each gun overlayed on one another in Photoshop as there was no grip radius info anywhere. I find this to be one of the hard stops on gun purchases since there really is no way to adjust the grip length unlike the LOP which is fairly easy to work around. That said, was it significantly different -- only trying it out in hand is going to tell.

We did end up with a Syren Tempio Sporting but only because it's available in a 20ga (and used which you NEVER see since everyone loves these guns so much) which is what she wanted to shoot and the Compact is only available in a 12ga.


Gentofleisure, I bow to your trusty tape measure and stand corrected! My friend Melanie, a height-challenged woman of a certain age, looked at both guns, shot my Syren, and opted for the Compact. While the lower price was definitely a factor, she prefers the schnabel to the rounded forend. When she subsequently bought a 28 gauge Syren Tempio, to which she has since added a 20 gauge barrel, she asked for and got schnabel forends for each gauge (and hats off to August Crocker for working that deal for Melanie).

Eric: Where do you, your shootist wife and your birdie dog live?

MAJ

_________________
'Where is the kaboom? There was supposed to be a giant earth-shattering kaboom!" Marvin the Martian


Last edited by MAJENKINS on Thu May 16, 2019 6:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2019 5:33 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 27, 2019 12:19 pm
Posts: 36
MAJENKINS wrote:

Eric: Where do you, your shootist wife and your birdie dog live?

MAJ


In the shadow of Pikes Peak, Colorado Springs, Colorado.

And, now it's "dogs". We were so impressed by Brad Higgins, his method and his dogs, that we came home with one. A little darling pointer names, Stella. She is truly a star.


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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2019 6:20 pm 
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Location: Dallas, Texas
Lovely place to live, especially compared to Dallas in the summer. Congrats on the new pup! As I need a little chaos in my life, I'm getting a standard poodle puppy in the fall. Water retriever here I go! MAJ

_________________
'Where is the kaboom? There was supposed to be a giant earth-shattering kaboom!" Marvin the Martian


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 Post subject: Re: Franchi Catalyst
PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2019 8:21 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 13, 2013 6:51 pm
Posts: 25
Some new information. I was at the US Open today and had a discussion with Desirae Edmunds about the Beretta Vittoria. She explained that dedicated Women’s guns have a shorter “reach” (length from grip to trigger). She showed me how women need to raise their right elbows in an awkward way in order to get their finger on the trigger. I looked at my daughter ‘s Benelli Montefeltro and the reach width the youth stock is longer than on my Perazzi. Maybe that is the reason my daughter complained that her right arm was sore after shooting a round of 100.




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