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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
:D Hi all, well here we go again with this subject, but I had to get this off my chest (thanks BTW for putting up with me!). Anyway, I just recently purchased a Tristar Brittany in 16ga. To say the least I was impressed. Fit and finish are excellent. Balance and handling are also great. Opens and closes very easy. The guns functions (ejectors, SST and safety/selector) no problems what so ever. Weight is 6-10. Bluing and CC are fine. This gun is just a hair above my BSA Classic in 12ga in quality, but not by much at all.

Compared to the Turk guns I've seen, it stands head and shoulders above them.

I think Zabala has improved its QC from the old days.

For the price I think they are among the best values going at this time.

Did I get a couple of fluks or has anyone else have the same experience that I have had with them?

BTW I paid $500 for the BSA and $775 for the Tristar.

Have a good one!!!

Greg
 

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Greg,

I think you are misinformed about the quality (or lack thereof) of the Zabala guns. Many of the older Zabalas currently on the market, were indeed, low quality. However, this should not be taken as typical of all Zabala guns. Like many Spanish makers, Zabala built guns to a price point for various importers. As such, an importer would order so many shotguns of a certain style for a given price. Little regard (within reason) was given to the out right quality of the gun. It was what it was. The market of the time was a take it or leave it affair.

On the other hand, Zabala also made some very high quality guns. These guns were generally sold under their own name in Europe. So they knew which end of the file to put to the metal.

Since those days, many things have changed in the double gun market. There was the drop off in popularity (it's recent resurgence not withstanding), which caused a drop in volume. The failed DIARM fiasco basically tells the whole tale. Out of the ashes of DIARM rose a whole new market. Doubles are becoming popular again. The higher grades produced by Uggie, AyA, Grulla, etc are in great demand, especially with older shooters who tend to have more disposable income right now. But there is also a market for lower end doubles of much better quality than was available 30 years ago. The Turks have responded to that market, but so has Zabala. Given their experience, they are much better at providing the necessary level of quality for any given price point.

To sum it up, Zabala's quality hasn't so much improved (it was always there if you were willing to pau for it), they are just building better guns to a higher price point.

Frank
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
:D Hi Frank great to hear from you again!! Once again the master has spoken!! You never cease to amaze me with your knowledge and insight.I know we have had this discussion before, but as I said I just had to speak my peace. We still hear how ZH is such a low end piece of junk, when I think they have really done a good job in recent years.

Its to bad that someone does not import some of their better "high" end guns. They sure look nice on the ZH site and I really think they could give some of the better known makers a run for the money.

I agree totally that the Turks are now filling the low end market. To me, I don't care one lick for them. Heavy, not that well finished and just don't feel right. But hey, who knows in a few years they too will be making some outstanding guns (Kimber not withstanding, but I think they are way over priced IMO).

One thing the Turks and ZH do have in common is the wood. Not very good, but for the $$$ you can't have everything.

Once again, thanks Frank. I always enjoy your posts and comments!!

All the best!!

Greg
 

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I have an older Zabala 12 g sxs inported by Kassaner. It was manufactured in 1968. It has 27" barrels, FULL/MOD , 3" chambers, chrome bores and it is fairly well made. It locks up tight and patterns very nicely(especially w/ the shorter bbls) The fit is fine, finish is bad because of poor storage in it's lifetime. I have seen some poor Zabala's (mostly all imported by Richland Arms), but I have also seen some nicer ones from the past. I believe it's the saem as it was....hit or miss! You can also find older ones that are good. I also have a Stevens Model 315 that I'm opting to sell over the Zabala. I'm no expert, but the Spanish gun is staying with me!
 

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I have two Zabala 10ga SxSs. Both were made in the 1970's and one was imported by Kassaner. It is a good solid gun with a coin finished receiver. It shoots great F&F patterns from the 30 " barrels.

The other gun was made for the European market and is obviously a much better gun with hammer cocking indicators and a self opening system. It is stocked in great French walnut and came to me in a fitted case.

So, it is obvious that Frank is spot on about the various "grades" that were offered by Zabala in those days.
 
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