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brianidaho
April 10, 2006, 11:47 PM
Well, I have always wanted a nice, yet somewhat reasonably priced, double shotgun, and after a bunch of pondering decided on an over/under. It took me a long time to decide on the one I wanted. Last week I got to check out a Franchi Alcione SX for the first time, and I have to say this thing looked really nice. I also was looking at a Citori and Beretta (Silver Pigeon), both of which were really out of my price range. The wood on the Franchi was considerably nicer than either of the other 2, and in a nice satin finish; personally I don't care for the high gloss of the Citori. Here's what it looks like: http://media.benelliusa.com/Upload/Franchi/Product-Photos/Alcione-Classic-SX-28.jpg , actually the one I looked at had quite a bit nicer wood that this. Fit and balance felt really nice to me...from what little experience I have with doubles. I am hoping the reliability of the Franchi is up to that of the "B" guns.

Anyway, the gun is a 12 ga, 28 inch barrels, choke tubes. Price is $1249, which is by far the most I have ever payed for a gun. I did some checking from on-line sites, and all were more than this. I put her on layaway at lunch time, hope to bail it out in a month or so. This model is discontinued, the new model (Renaissance) has a Cynergy-style recoil pad, and an aluminum receiver, both of which I can pass on.

Do any of you guys and girls have any experience with Franchi's, or with this specific model? I'm hoping I made a good choice here. I'll post some pics when I pick her up..maybe sooner if they let me take some pics in the store when I stop by to fondle it.

I'll be using this for informal trap and skeet shooting, upland bird and some waterfowl...due to a budget I have to make one gun do it all. One nice feature of the Franchi is that you can buy a seperate barrel set and convert to different lengths/gauges, without them being "matched" to the particular gun.

Bri

hoghunting
April 11, 2006, 09:49 PM
Brian,
Not only did you make a good choice, but you did it at a great price. I have seen them for about $1800. My buddy has one and it shoots amazingly. I thought about getting one, but I knew it would get scratched up and I would be too anal trying to keep it perfect. Decided to just keep using my Ithaca and SKB. You did very well and should be proud.

brianidaho
April 11, 2006, 11:17 PM
hoghunting, thanks for the input. I hadn't realized these sold for that kind of money-$1800 would have put it solidly out of my price range. I usually study and research quite a while before spending even the kind of money I have tied up in this, and hadn't found all that much on Franchi's, and particularly the Alcione. The looks of this gun, for the price, pushed me over the edge. I would have slightly preferred the same gun with the "white" (nickle?) receiver, but I couldn't even find one of those on line. I'm sure you are right, I tend to be pretty anal about taking care of my guns...I need to get that first scratch in it and get over it. Heck, at least if the hunting is slow I can spend my time looking at the gun :).

How has your buddies gun held up? I know some of the Browning/Beretta guys say the Franchis won't hold up to tens of thousands of rounds the way their guns will...but I wonder if this is really the case. Even if it is, I won't be shooting in those kinds of volumes anyways. Also, how do you like the barrel selector? It's mounted on the trigger...I'm curious as to how long this takes to get used to. Any thoughts are much appreciated.

Thanks again HH.

Bri

hoghunting
April 12, 2006, 10:50 PM
Brian,
I think your Browning/Beretta boys are blowing out their a$$. Franchi is owned by Beretta and is also made in Italy( just as Beretta,Benelli). The Browning boys are ticked because they are made in Japan.

My buddy has put about 9000 rounds through his as he is a big skeet man. There is no difference in the lockup now as it was new. He has not had any problems.

The selector is as easy to use as the safety on the trigger guard right behind the trigger ( as similar to most pumps or semi-autos). It might take a little getting used to if you haven't used one.

Have a good time with your gun!

brianidaho
April 16, 2006, 12:08 AM
hoghunter, thanks again. I'm pretty sure I'll be happy with this gun, and that it will do everything I expect. I probably won't do over 2k rounds per year, and in all likelyhood less than 1k, and I trust it will do just fine for this kind of use. I expect you are right on the barrel selector as well, I imagine getting used to it won't take long.

I'm probably going to pick it up this week, I'll post pics when I do so. And also a range report.

Here's another question for you O/U owners. If you are only shooting one barrel (say singles trap) or say plan on your more open barrel for your first shot, which barrel do you set up as your primary, the top or bottom one? Or do you switch them, say to equalize wear on the barrel? This will be my first double, its not clear to me that there is an obvious reason to go one way over the other. I suppose the top barrel is a bit easier to load though.

Thanks.
Bri

brianidaho
April 18, 2006, 03:28 PM
Well, I picked her up at lunch time...its going to be a long afternoon before I can take it home, get it out and fondle it. (not one word guys!)

Bri

hoghunting
April 18, 2006, 11:09 PM
Brian,
Just a word of caution, that shotgun will cause you to lose too much time. For the next few weeks, you are going to be taking it out and admiring it every chance you get. It will take you a while to believe that it is really yours. That is what everyone does, so get ready. Congrats, and that is being said with envy.

brianidaho
April 19, 2006, 10:05 AM
hh, you are right up to a point....when the c-card bill arrives I'll be reminded who REALLY owns it! But you are right about looking at it. I brought it home last night and assembled it, I'm really happy with the appearance of the gun, the wood quality is everything I remembered, metal work is nice and it seems to fit me well. I'll post pics as soon as I get a chance to get some outside in daylight, my lighting at home isn't what it could be.

I plan to go out and check out a local trap range tonight, we'll see how it goes. I haven't shot trap in years, so the results won't be much to go by, but at least I can see if it goes boom.

Bri

scotts_4x
April 19, 2006, 09:52 PM
pretty nice gun, but a few cosmetic things that I don't like about it. the shape of the checkering pattern on the pistol grip strikes me as odd. the dimple in the forearm is somethign I steer away from, and the vented fill plate between the barrels seems like it would collect a lot of dirt/debris. I just picked up a 20 ga beretta white onyx for that exact price, and if it normally goes for 1800 like posted earlier, I'd steer plenty clear and buy a gun that you KNOW will last, not take a chance on something more expensive. just my $.02.

-Scott

brianidaho
April 22, 2006, 01:38 PM
Figured I'd post a few pics:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e297/brianidaho/alcionesx9.jpg
http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e297/brianidaho/alcionesx15.jpg
http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e297/brianidaho/alcionesx14.jpg
http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e297/brianidaho/alcionesx7.jpg
http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e297/brianidaho/alcionesx8.jpg

brianidaho
April 22, 2006, 02:36 PM
Scott, I have no doubt that the White Onyx is a great shotgun and very reliable, but around here they went for more money than the one I got. The ones they had here looked pretty plain in comparison, very little figure in the wood, and minimal engraving on the metalwork. Fron an appearance standpoint, the angle of the bottom of the pistol grip, and the notch in the top surface of the receiver just didn't look quite "right" to me. Not to say that they are not great guns.

I suspect you are right about the slotted filler panel between the barrels on mine, while they may help cooling (air flow), they do look like they may collect dirt.

Oh yeah, I managed to put the first damn "ding" in it the first night I took it out trap shooting. Not bad, but not "new" anymore. At least the next one won't hurt so much.

Bri

hoghunting
April 22, 2006, 06:52 PM
Brian,
You have every right to be proud of that gun. That is some of the prettiest wood that I have seen. That definitely was a very good buy for $1200. Great choice in shotguns. Congrats.

scotts_4x
April 22, 2006, 08:54 PM
Brian,

no worries man, that's why they say different strokes for different folks.

and about the dings, yeah, I put the first ding in mine the FIRST time I took it out of the case. it seems that the material that the monoblock is made out of is a whole bunch harder than that of the stock, DOH!

that is some really nice looking wood. you shoudl be proud of the gun you chose. have fun with it and I hope you shoot it well.

-Scott

timinkc
July 21, 2006, 03:30 PM
I love franchi shotguns... my very first "nice shotgun was a franchi... Don't get me wrong I love my beretta too, but no one needs to make any excusses for buying a franchi