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Old January 24, 2011, 02:24 AM   #1
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Thumbs up for Franchi I-12

I recently purchased a Franchi I-12 Sporting for use on the skeet field, however there were very few reviews of the gun online so I made a bit of a leap of faith buying it. Having said that, I could not be happier with it, and for those shooters unsure about the I-12, here's why.

First off, the gun is gorgeous! The dark brown, black and silver color scheme looks great and the little details like the silver band near the recoil pad really pull the look together and illustrate the care taken to make this a great looking gun. No engraving on the receiver to needlessly cost me more of my dollars, the gun is simple, bold, and elegant looking. Now on to things you don't see from pictures online.

Handling: The gun is light! The 30" barrel with the extended choke is a bit imposing, but the gun is a featherweight for its size. The balance point is also perfect IMO, being right at the front end of the receiver. It swings effortlessly. The forearm is slim, but not undersized.

Action: The action is slick right out of the box. The inertia-driven rotating bolt glides effortlessly inside the receiver. The bolt locks into the barrel with ease. Racking the bolt for the first time made me think that it was somehow very well used but immaculately cared for, but it was a brand new gun. Lockup is very solid while reciprocation is extremely smooth.

Reliability: So far I've put about 250 rounds through the gun. The first 25 or 50 were 1oz shells and they did not cycle the action completely, which is to be expected because the manual states that 1&1/8oz. shells are to be used at minimum. I then put 10 rounds of 00 buckshot and 50 rounds of 1&1/4oz. game loads through it all without a hitch to ensure the action got broken in. After that I shot 150 rounds of Federal bulk pack 7&1/2 shot with 100% reliability. I suspect that I may even be able to go back to 1oz. loads at this point as it is not struggling to cycle at all. I have no reason to try though, as the cheapest shells around are all 1&1/8oz, but I do not reload.

Cleaning: It's extremely easy for a few reasons.
1. The gun stays clean due to its inertia operation
2. dis-assembly is very simple
3. The silver finish on the receiver shows the internal carbon buildup well once the bolt is removed, letting you know exactly where to clean.

Note: As an inertia gun it does kick more than a gas operated shotgun such as the Beretta 391. It's not uncomfortable, but if reduced recoil is a big thing for you, there are better choices out there.

Anyway, I just wanted to post a positive review of the gun because all to often people only bother posting negative reviews of guns that sometimes can give gun undeserved bad reputations

I looked long and hard at the Remington 1100, the Winchester SX3, the Beretta 391 Urika 2, and the Benelli M2 and I think I made the right choice. Price was about equal on all of them (except the remington) but the Franchi gave me more features for my money.
"The SKS is a rifle, made the way they should be, out of a heavy block of crappy commie steel, set in an inletted semi-reshaped 2x4."

Not my quote but I agree completely.
rugerdude is offline  
Old January 24, 2011, 04:47 AM   #2
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One of my neighbors has one.

It's a great shotgun .
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Old January 24, 2011, 12:07 PM   #3
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From the description in your review, it sounds like you have the I-12 Sporting model.

It's definitely a very nice shotgun. Congrats on the purchase!

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A liberal firearms owner and 2A supporter from New Jersey (yes, we do exist).
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Old January 25, 2011, 07:29 AM   #4
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Wow someone else actually got one

I must say I really like mine, its my first and only semi auto for skeet and its been great. Extremely light which im in favor of and it just feels r"ight" compared to the others I looked at.

Glad to hear another I-12 fan
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Old November 6, 2012, 01:56 PM   #5
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Location: Syracuse, NY
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I bought an I-12 a few months back. I ran about 500 rounds through it on the skeet field in late summer/early fall with very little problems. Some of my 1 oz handloads didn't go through clean at first, so I changed my recipe to 1 1/8 oz. The manufacturer recommends that as a minimum anyway. Since then, no problems. Factory loads glide through it like a hot knife through butter.

I have now used it in the flooded duck timber for two weeks with 3 inch factory steel loads with perfect results. The gun is light, easy to carry and the synthetic parts make for no worries on getting it messy. Cleaning and assembling this gun is simpler than any shotgun I have ever used.

For a utilitarian type like myself, this gun is perfect. It does exactly what I expect it to do and I didn't need a bank loan to buy it. I can't see any advantage to a gun that costs twice as much other than styling.

Of course, style means nothing when you are up to your nuts in swamp water.
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