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Recommendations for Buying First Shotgun

2714 Views 6 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  jlptexashunter
I am new to shotgunning. I have shot sporting clays a few times; loved it! Will mainly use for clays and perhaps some dove and quail. Looking for semi-auto. Currently, I am looking @ a Beretta 390 ($530) and Remington 1100 ($430) or Remington 1187 ($600). Do not want to spend over $600. Any suggestions/recommendations on these or any other?
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Any of the guns you mentioned should work just fine. You won't need 3" shells for doves or quail, so the Rem 1100 will work just as well as the other two.

I like the Beretta 390 a lot. Very reliable, sturdy, shoots almost any kind of shells without balking. It will go a considerable time between cleanings.

The Rem 1100 is good also. Reliable, but not quite as sturdy for really long term use as the 390 IMO. However, the few parts that might break are inexpensive, readily available, and easy to replace. The 1100 needs cleaning a little more often than the 390.

So really, it's a tossup, but if I were buying it primarily for clays shooting, I'd buy the 390.
Never shot any semi-auto shotguns myself, but in the reviews I've read Beretta 391 Urika is called "The king of semi-autos" ...based on what I've heard and read I'd go for it if I were to buy a semi-auto...
Any of the three would do you proud. I own all three (except my Beretta is a 391) and have never had a major problem with any of them.

The 1100 has been around for 30 years or more. Many parts avaliable almost anywhere. Any tom/dick/harry can fix one--no matter what the problem is.

The 1187 replaced the 1100--and has a lot of the 1100 "knowledge" built into it by Remington. A fine shotgun from a good line of guns.

The Beretta 390 is the replacement of the 301 and the 302, and it has subsequently been replaced by the 391. Don't let that bother you. Beretta has been making guns for 470 years (literally) and knows how to do it.

My advice: if possible, 'try' all three for fit and eye appeal--to you. See if the seller will allow you to shoot them. My guess that one will strike you as 'this is the one!'

Which ever one you choose, you will not be making a big mistake.

Good luck and let us know.
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I would pick the 1100, but for that price I would guess it is the synthetic model, and I prefer real wood. For clays, dove, and quail, the 2 3/4" chamber is all you will ever need. Another gun you might come across on sale in your range that is nice is the Franchi.
WARNING- You are hooked. it may not be too late if you don't allow yourself to become addicted to sporting clays. Check on the net if there are any support groups, or clinics that specialize in claydiction. It is too late for me, but you may be saved. I would recommend a 12 step program before it is too late. That's 12 step, not 12 *****!
I really like all of these guns but if I had to recommend one it would be Remington 11-87. The reason for this is the ability to find accessories, barrels, chokes. These guns are easily reconfigured into turkey, deer, clays guns and the parts can be found almost anywhere including the local Wal-Mart. I believe the 1100/11-87 is the most purchased semi on the planet.
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