View Full Version : Opinions on these three

December 7, 2008, 11:56 AM
Ok, so I'm essentially a "retread". Been out of the hunting scene for the last 9 years, but rediscovering how much I had enjoyed it and do miss it, that and combined with a serious gf, whose family is all about hunting, I'm in the midst of rebuilding my firearms collection. One of the next guns I plan to purchase is a good pump action 12ga. Currently I've narrowed down the choices to the following three and am hoping for some feedback on them.
Uses for shotgun: Waterfowl, turkey, small game possible [though thinking of getting a 20ga O/U for that]. Area that I'll be hunting in is now open to rifles, so not needed for deer. And I plan to purchase new.

Browning BPS Hunter
Likes: Previous experience due my father having one. Always found it reliable, smooth operating, and an overall aesthetically nice appearance
Dislikes: Price [$529]

Ithaca 37 Featherlight
Likes: Long history behind design [Ithaca built since '37, originally the Remington Model 13 design, designed by John Browning]. Have some experience with a Deerslayer I [same design] and enjoyed it. Love the asthetics of it.
Dislikes: Can't change out barrel. High priced [$859]. Harder to find a new one to test fit.

Weatherby PA-08 Upland
Likes: Price [$389], Weatherby reputation, aesthetically decent
Dislikes: Lack of experience with, lack of reviews found, have not found this in the local stores to test fit

Yes, I know quite a few people are 870 fans. I've previously owned one, and while I find its a decent shotgun for the price, I'm just not a huge fan of them.
I am partially leaning away from the BPS for the moment, due to the fact that I want to get one in 16ga [huge fan of the 16ga], and having a different firearm for each ga means less chance of mixing up, say picking up a 12ga and trying to use 16ga ammo in it.
Any feedback?

December 7, 2008, 12:18 PM
Since you asked for opinions, here ya go: Of the guns listed, the Browning is your better choice. But you are steering away from that. The new Ithacas, let's just say that the new ones are NOT the quality of the older ones. They did make a lot in 16 ga. which you like. The not so older 870s, which you do not prefer came in 16 ga. One to consider is the 16 ga. Winchester Mod 12. A lot of them in very fine shape are starting to surface at a good price. Cabela's in Wheeling always has several of them in stock. As for confusing what ammo goes in what gun, I know that you are smarter than that. I own and shoot all of the gages save for 8 and 32. I only let the gage be a deciding factor if I really wanted the gage in that gun. IE, my 870 Wingmaster in 28 ga. is a real upland sweetheart, light and quick. I would not want the same gun in a 12, too heavy. I, sure you'll figure out what you want.

December 7, 2008, 12:29 PM
Fred, obviously you have not seen the new Ithacas. I have seen one and the quality is better than my 50s gun. The gun is fantastic with much better tolerances than the old ones which are no slouches. The new guns come with choke tubes so unless you want a different size or type of barrel you don't have to change them. If you do you can get barrels and they do interchange with no fitting.

December 7, 2008, 07:13 PM
Mmmm yeah I am leaning towards the Browning for the time being. Going for the 12ga for this one as ammunition is plentiful, and personally I'd rather the 12ga for waterfowl/turkey.

16ga is just a personal passion of mine. My first shotgun was a Kmart single shot 16ga and I loved it. The BPS is also chambered in 16ga, as well as a Browning O/U model that I can't think of at the moment.

Truth be told, I wouldn't mind eventually owning a BPS 12ga, O/U 16ga, and Model 37 in 20ga. Hehe fortunately for me I have an understanding fiance, whom, when I mentioned trying to think of excuse to own a certain type of firearm replied "Why do you need an excuse anyways? If you really want it....get it" :D

December 7, 2008, 07:39 PM
Umm, where does one find a girl like this??? She's a keeper!

December 7, 2008, 07:44 PM
LOL I found her in western NY. Her family goes hunting...mom did till she had kids, her dad has for 50+ years, and both brothers and her have picked up hunting in the last 15 years. She personally has an Ithaca Deerslayer I in 16ga and Mossberg bolt-action in 20ga.

December 8, 2008, 03:48 AM
I was leaning all over the BPS in 16ga too until I got bit by the SxS bug. Now my favorite is a very old Stevens Ranger in 16. Maybe I'll pick up the BPS someday just so it'll be there- That'd be my choice.

There's just something that feels nostalgic, time honored, and gentlemanly about carrying a 16... even if it's just in an old farmers grade shotgun.
"Farmers' Grade" -That's what the old gentleman I bought it from called it. Said farming was all he'd done his whole life (70+ years), so it might as well be a Farmers' Grade. I like it when a story comes with a firearm.

December 8, 2008, 10:58 AM
Sounds like the BPS is the gun for you. Don't forget to give us a heads-up when you get your new gun.

December 8, 2008, 12:33 PM
I would vote for the BPS as well - good solid guns.

December 8, 2008, 10:16 PM
For the past 9 years I've hunted ducks and geese with the BPS "Field" in 12 ga. 3 1/2" with polished bluing and walnut stocks. It is bar none the finest pump gun I have ever handled. Didn't realize they came chambered for the 16 as well . . . thanks, my list of must haves just got longer.

December 8, 2008, 10:44 PM
Can't go wrong with the BPS. That was my first pump shotgun. It is now retired in the back of my safe. I have shot mine no less than 10,000 times, many of those with heavy magnum loads and there is no appreciable wear on the interior.

December 9, 2008, 09:56 AM
...Didn't realize they came chambered for the 16 as well . . . thanks, my list of must haves just got longer.
Don't forget, the BPS now comes in 10-ga, too!

December 9, 2008, 12:55 PM
Now you're just stirring these guys up Zippy ...

December 9, 2008, 01:00 PM
... just a little. :rolleyes:

December 9, 2008, 04:38 PM
Real men shoot a 10ga BPS with a 32" barrel / at least once .... just because they can .... ( but when I closed my eyes, to prepare to absorb the recoil, it just wasn't that effective .... ).

My 10ga experience: - laying in a goose pit - find the target, sitting up now, leaning back to lead the bird, pulled the trigger on that 10ga with the 32" barrel - gun went bang - my head hit the ground .... got back up to make sure nobody was laughing .... and did it again.

Before I left Arkansas on that trip - I sold the gun, the extra barrel, and the hard case I took it down there in - to the guide for about $ 200. It was used - 2 rounds of Trap thru it, 2 days of goose hunting - so I thought $ 200 was a good deal for both of us ( this was about 1995 ... ). He probably still has that gun ..... ( I'm just a -CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED- at 6'5" and 290 lbs ...) but everybody shoot shoot a 10ga sitting up in a goose pit at least once ...