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Old February 23, 2013, 11:44 AM   #1
abiphone
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Tri-Star TSA 3.5 magnum review - Camo

Tri-Star TSA 3.5 magnum review - Camo - http://www.tristararms.com/tsa-camo-35-two-piston.php
I wanted to give my review on this gun because I searched for hours and didn't find any good reviews before I bought it. I ended up buying this gun anyway because it was the cheapest 3.5 semi auto on the market and it was all I could afford. Its no Benelli but i did find some small advantages over the Benelli.

Quality and feel: Overall I was very impressed with this gun. By all means this gun does NOT feel or look cheap in the hands. All the internals are made of metal. I was very impressed overall. For the price I was expecting the gun to feel like my Mossberg. My Mossberg goes bang every time you pull the trigger but quality wise the gun just feels loose and flimsy in the hand. This gun does not feel like that at all and feels like a high quality gun in the hands. The camo finish is very smooth and does not scratch easy.

Recoil: I took the gun to the range with a buddy of mine that just bought a Benelli Super Vinci. Both guns were new out of the box and we went through 200 rounds in each gun. I read that gas guns were supposed to handle recoil better then the Inertia (recoil) design. After shooting both guns with the same load there was a lighter recoil on the tri-star but nothing major in my opinion. I think the recoil may have a impact after shooting 3.5 mags all day.

Design & Features: This gun shoots them all from your light skeet loads to your heavy 3.5 mag turkey load. This was one advantage over the Benelli. The Tri-Star came with two pistons that can easily be swapped out. One for light loads and the other for heavy loads. My buddy was unable to shoot anything lighter then a 1 1/8 oz load. The gun comes with three chokes (F,M,IC)

Functionality: After going through 200 round the gun did not lock up or jam once, nor did the Benelli. I shoot my guns year round from skeet, dove, pigeons, duck, sage, pheasants and geese. My guns will easily go through 1500-2500 rounds per year, both light and heavy loads. Ill keep you updated on the functionality after a couple thousand rounds. My old Browning BPS finally bit the dust after a couple years. R.I.P Browning BPS we had alot of good time together. To her defence she was used before I bought her :-)

Disassembly & Cleaning: The gun was very easy to tear down and clean. At first it was a little tricky to remove the bolt handle. It has to be removed in order to remove the bolt assembly. However as soon as you figure it out its easy to remove every time after that after. Just read the instructions if you have any troubles. Every thing else was a breeze even the trigger. The Benelli was by far easier to tear down and clean.

Weight: The gun felt very light until I compared it to the Benelli. At 7.4 pounds it was still pretty light and comfortable to shoot, however the Benelli was noticeably lighter.

Overall: I was very impressed and would definitely recommend it to my friends and family. I am not claiming this gun is better or worse then a Benelli. However if your like me that shoots both heavy and light loads year round and dont want to break the bank. I would recommend this over a Benelli just for the simple fact that this gun has a two piston system and was 1,200 dollars cheaper. I picked this gun up for 570 shipped from galleryofguns. Its not just the Benelli that have issues with light loads there are a lot of semi autos that have this issue and there are a lot that don't. Just be sure you research before buying any gun if you plan on shooting light and heavy loads. I did not know this and would have been very upset spending that much money only to find out I would have to purchase a different gun for skeet and dove. There are some modification that can be done to help with the lights loads on the Benelli’s and there are some reports people can shoot light loads just fine out of box. I know two people with the Benelli Super Vinci that have this issue so it may just be a hit and miss? My other buddy has had this Benelli for a year now and shoots only 3.5 through it. Even after attempting to break in the gun with heavy loads he is still unable to shoot light loads. The guns just wont cycle the next round. If you dont shoot a lot of light loads, have a fat wallet, and want a high quality gun then go with the Benelli as it will likely outlive the Tri-star. However the Tri-Star does come with a five year warranty! In addition to the five year warranty Davidson's (galleryofguns) offer a lifetime warranty! So far there customer service has been great with answering general questions before and after the sale. They responded within 24 hours.

Pros: Price, quality, two piston system.

Cons: The front bead sight. Its not bad but its not the best either. The bolt release button is very stiff compared to the Benelli and hurts the fingers after a couple hundred rounds.

Last edited by abiphone; February 23, 2013 at 11:49 AM.
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Old February 23, 2013, 03:08 PM   #2
Virginian-in-LA
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Glad you like it. More interested in how in the world you wore out a BPS. Exactly what did you do to it that wasn't fixable, or did you just get ready to move on?
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Old February 24, 2013, 12:13 AM   #3
abiphone
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Join Date: February 23, 2013
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It just kept jamming up after so many rounds. It was very frustrating when your out in the field and it locks up only to watch a few ducks fly by. Took it to a gunsmith and he couldn't figure it out. I tore it down completely and cleaned it up but still the same results. I think there was just something internal that was just worn out. Visually everything looked at par other then some ware. Probably just needed a new bolt assembly or something? Im sure it was a simple fix I thought of coming to the forums to see what every one thought but it was a perfect opportunity for a new gun that I couldn't pass up. :-)
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