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Old November 19, 2012, 08:12 PM   #52
Virginian-in-LA
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 11, 2012
Location: Evangeline, LA
Posts: 813
The biggest enemy of any autoloader is the nut on the back of the stock.
I went to a statewide trapshoot, and a guy with a jacket full of scare patches was bitching about his new 1100. Turned out the gas piston and piston seal were installed backwards - and he was insulted when I suggested he look at that. I have been shooting 1100s and 11-87s for 49 years on the 1100s, and have never blown one 'O' ring. I worked on and sold guns for 25 years, and I never saw one I couldn't get working except one with a cracked receiver - and drilled out gas ports. The 'O' ring does not move in operation and 99.999% of them fall victim to ham handed cleaning and disassembly. My 1963 1100 still has the first elastomer 'O' ring I installed about 1967 to replace the metal 'V' ring so I wouldn't lose it. My test may outlive me. The gas system does not run as clean as some, but I have never found any round, including some nasty old Blue Dot magnums, that it couldn't handle for 200 rounds. I didn't press for more because I never, ever shoot that many nasty loads at one time.
If you like anything else better, that's fine, but don't tell me how unreliable an 1100/11-87 is. Go to a 3 gun match and see 30 year old 1100s running right along with new Benellis costing many hundreds more. 11-87s will not always cycle light loads, but Remington designed them to go down to 1-1/8 ounce field loads, not the mouse fart stuff.
I like 1100s/11-87s better than anything else, other than some SxSs, I have seen in the intervening 49 years, and I have owned and shot a boatload of shotguns, but I am a realist, and I do not contend they are the answer for everyone. Not even close. The Berettas are nice gas guns and if you like the feel better you are in good company. If you don't like to do a quick 5 minute spray and wipe cleaning after you shoot one round or 500, I don't think they are the gun for you. If they don't fit you, they are probably not for you because you can just tweak the fit a little. If the weight with the steel receiver seems heavy to you, you are out of luck. If you like light weight, simple design, and no cleaning, with the right loads a Benelli will make you happy, as long as you like recoil or two piece stocks. There are in fact lots of choices, and without interference from the aforementioned nut on the back of the stock, most of them work fine.
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