Shotguns 2006

A quiet year is expected in the smoothbore community, but you'll still see some innovative products.

Field & Stream Online Editors

In terms of sheer numbers of new products, this is not a big year for the smoothbore community, but a few innovations have found their way into the mix. Winchester and Browning have a new semi-auto gas-operating system that is likely to form the basis for a significant family of arms. Remington has made welcome improvements to its venerable Model 1100 in the clay-target arena and continues with its camouflaged hunting line for deer and turkey enthusiasts. In fact, camo finishes are appearing on an increasing number of established models in 2006.

Sturm, Ruger & Co
Red Label in Realtree
Responding to the requests of upland game, wild turkey and waterfowl hunters, who believe blending in can mean the difference between success and failure, Ruger will offer the popular Red Label All Weather 12-gauge over/under in a Realtree Hardwoods HD camouflage finish. Both the metal parts and the synthetic buttstock and forearm are covered in a durable, abrasion-resistant coating that helps hunters stay stealthy and also protects the firearm. Booth #808 and #1901. (203-259-7843; ruger.com)

Browning

| Semi-auto fans will find a new 12-gauge autoloader in the lineup from Browning this year. The Silver 12-gauge features an aluminum-alloy receiver in a semi-humpback design and Browning's Active Valve gas system, which automatically adjusts to fire a wide range of loads. The Silver 12 will be offered in 3- and 3.5-inch chambers. The receiver has a silver finish, while the walnut stock and forearm are finished in satin. The average weight is 7.5 pounds. SRP: $876 for the 3-inch model, $1,023 for the 3.5-inch model.

The gun will be offered in a 3.5-inch Silver Stalker model with a black-matte composite stock and a black-finished receiver. SRP: $963. It will also be offered in Mossy Oak New Break-Up and Mossy Oak New Shadow Grass camo with Browning's Dura-Touch Armor Coat. SRP: $1,098.

The Cynergy Classic Field and Classic Sporting models both get a 12-gauge this year. They blend the advanced Cynergy design-ultra-low-profile receiver and MonoLock hinge, reverse-striker ignition system, mechanical triggers-with the lines of a traditional stock and forearm. The Classic Field receiver has distinctive game-bird scenes on both the right and left sides, and its walnut stock and forearm have a satin finish. SRP: $2,186.

The Classic Sporting model features special engraving, with a Browning Buckmark logo in the center, and a traditional-style walnut stock and forearm in an oil finish. SRP: $3,200. The Gold semi-auto shotgun will be offered in three new versions-Gold Superlite Hunter, Gold Superlite FLD Hunter and Gold Superlite Micro 20-gauge. A new alloy magazine tube leaves them nearly half a pound lighter than existing models. The Superlite Micro, for example, weighs only 6 pounds 3 ounces. SRP: Starts at $1,083. Booth #401 and #515. (800-333-3288; browning.com)

Remington Arms
A noticeable revamp of the Remington smoothbore line includes a number of new models for 2006. The Model 1100 Competition, designed for the serious clay-target shooter, comes only in 12-gauge, with a 30-inch overbored (.735) barrel and with a standard buttstock or an adjustable comb and the Remington R3 LimbSaver recoil pad. The new ProBore barrel has a 10mm target-style rib with twin beads and uses a new interchangeable extended choke tube system that is not compatible with the standard Rem. Choke tubes. Tubes are available in Skeet (.004), IC (.009), Light Mod (.012), Mod (.018) and Full (.036). All internal-action moving parts are plated with electroless nickel and Teflon, for reduced wear and friction. The gun weighs 8.25 pounds and has a 14.25-inch length of pull, a 2.25-inch drop atomb and a 1.5-inch drop at heel. SRP: $1,265 for the standard stock, $1,450 for the adjustable comb.

The Model 1100 Classic Field line gains a 12-gauge with a 26- or 28-inch barrel and 28-gauge and .410 models with a 25-inch barrel. All use the Rem. Choke system. Features include a high-polish receiver and barrel, semigloss American walnut stock, twin beads (front ivory, with steel mid-bead), classic white-line spacers and a diamond grip cap. SRP: $799 to $832. The new 11-87 and 870 Special Purpose Thumbhole-Deer models use a heavier laminated thumbhole stock and an R3 recoil pad to reduce recoil. The fully rifled cantilever barrel (21 inches on the 11-87 and 23 inches on the 870) is designed for 2¿¿- or 3-inch sabot slugs. It comes sans iron sights to allow optical sights to be mounted to the barrel, preventing point-of-impact shifts when the barrel is removed for cleaning. SRP: $960 for the 11-87, $672 for the 870.

| The new Model 11-87 Super Magnum Special Purpose Thumbhole-Turkey is fully covered in Mossy Oak Obsession camo. The 23-inch barrel is equipped with Truglo fiber-optic adjustable rifle sights. It's also drilled and tapped for a Weaver rail mount, so optical sights can be easily attached without removing the iron sights. Capable of handling 2¿¿-, 3- and 3.5-inch 12-gauge shells, it is supplied with an extended Turkey Super Full choke tube. SRP: $1,049.

In addition, this year the existing 11-87 and 870 Special Purpose Turkey guns will be drilled and tapped for the Weaver rail-mount system.

Remington is upgrading two models of its popular 870 Express pump shotgun. One will be offered with a brown laminate stock; the other will wear Mossy Oak Break-Up camo.

Two special-edition NRA guns will also be introduced this year. The Model 870 Wingmaster 12-gauge comes with a 28-inch, light-contour, vent-ribbed barrel with Rem. Chokes in IC, Mod and Full. Both the barrel and receiver are a high-polish blue.

**The Model 11-87 Sportsman **
12-gauge has a 28-inch standard-contour barrel, one Mod Rem. Choke tube, swivel studs and magazine cap. The buttstock and forearm are in Mossy Oak Break-Up. Both models feature the NRA Heritage logo on the receiver. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the NRA. SRP: $665 for the 11-87, $685 for the 870. The Dale Earnhardt Tribute series comes to an end this year with the Model 870 Wingmaster 20-gauge. Its 26-inch, vent-ribbed, Rem. Choke barrel is chambered for three-inch shells. A finely detailed image of Dale Earnhardt, with scrollwork and his signature appear on the left receiver panel, and a tributary banner that reads "7 Time Winston Cup Champion" appears on the right. Both the signature and the banner message are in 24-karat gold, and the special- edition serial numbers continue. SRP: $820. Booth #443. (800-243-9700; remington.com)

Winchester Firearms
A new semi-auto design highlights Winchester's shotgun offerings for the new year. The Super X3 12-gauge uses the new automatic Active Valve gas system to handle a wide range of loads without adjustment. The gun will be offered in several configurations.

| The Super X3 Field is chambered for three-inch loads and weighs in at 6.5 pounds, thanks to a lighter magazine tube, recoil-spring system, slim-line barrel and machined rib. A new-generation Pachmayr recoil pad comes standard, and metal surfaces are covered in gunmetal gray Perma-Cote UT (Ultra Tough) for corrosion protection. A spacer system on the buttstock makes it possible to adjust the length of pull. SRP: $979.

Winchester's Super X3 Composite models will be offered with 3-inch and 3.5-inch chambers, with Perma-Cote. Stock spacers allow cast and drop adjustments over a quarter- inch range. The composite forearms incorporate the Quadra-Vent forward ducting system, which helps bleed gases away from the shooter more efficiently. SRP: $945 to $1,049.

The Super X3 Camo models will be available in 3.5-inch only, in either Mossy Oak Shadow Grass or Mossy Oak New Break-Up. SRP: $1,217.

Deer hunters will want to check out the Super X3 Cantilever Deer. The 22-inch cantilever barrel is fully rifled and chambered for three-inch shells. In addition, it has a fold-down adjustable rear sight and a Truglo fiber-optic front sight. SRP: $994. The Winchester Select line of over/under shotguns will add a Select Midnight model this year. Its blued receiver carries extensive engraving, with gold-accented game birds on both sides and the bottom. The satin-finished Grade II/III walnut stock and forearm feature a unique oval checkering pattern. Available in 12-gauge, with 26- or 28-inch barrels, it weighs in at a trim seven pounds. SRP: $2,380.

Also new for 2006 are the Select White Field Extreme and Traditional models. They are available in 12-gauge with 26- or 28-inch barrels and feature engraved silver nitride receivers. SRP: $1,533. Booth #301. (800-333-3288; winchesterguns.com)

Weatherby
A pair of upper-level side-by-side models constitute Weatherby's new shotgun offerings for 2006. Designed for the most discriminating double-gun enthusiast, the new side- by-side Athena D'Italia Deluxe features a single inertia trigger and an action sporting sculpted frame heads and adorned with a Bolino-style game scene with Renaissance floral engraving. The AAA Fancy Turkish walnut stock has a classic straight-grip buttstock with 24-line-per-inch checkering and a hand-rubbed oil finish. In addition, the gun can be personalized with the owner's initials. It's available in 12-, 20- and 28-gauge, with either 26- or 28-inch barrels. SRP: $7,625 for the 12- and 20-gauge models, $7,789 for the 28-gauge.

| The new Athena D'Italia PG is targeted at shooters seeking a quality double gun with a pistol grip and single trigger. It has a rounded pistol grip and semi-beavertail forearm, in a hand-selected, oil-finished walnut stock with laser-cut "New Scottish" checkering at 20 lines per inch. The PG comes in 12-gauge with 28-inch barrels (SRP: $3,599), 20-gauge with 26-inch or 28-inch barrels (SRP: $3,599) and 28-gauge with 26-inch barrels (SRP: $3,725). Both the PG and Deluxe models come with a foam-lined, embossed takedown case. Booth #3275. (800-227-2016; weatherby.com) r's Super X3 Composite models will be offered with 3-inch and 3.5-inch chambers, with Perma-Cote. Stock spacers allow cast and drop adjustments over a quarter- inch range. The composite forearms incorporate the Quadra-Vent forward ducting system, which helps bleed gases away from the shooter more efficiently. SRP: $945 to $1,049.

The Super X3 Camo models will be available in 3.5-inch only, in either Mossy Oak Shadow Grass or Mossy Oak New Break-Up. SRP: $1,217.

Deer hunters will want to check out the Super X3 Cantilever Deer. The 22-inch cantilever barrel is fully rifled and chambered for three-inch shells. In addition, it has a fold-down adjustable rear sight and a Truglo fiber-optic front sight. SRP: $994. The Winchester Select line of over/under shotguns will add a Select Midnight model this year. Its blued receiver carries extensive engraving, with gold-accented game birds on both sides and the bottom. The satin-finished Grade II/III walnut stock and forearm feature a unique oval checkering pattern. Available in 12-gauge, with 26- or 28-inch barrels, it weighs in at a trim seven pounds. SRP: $2,380.

Also new for 2006 are the Select White Field Extreme and Traditional models. They are available in 12-gauge with 26- or 28-inch barrels and feature engraved silver nitride receivers. SRP: $1,533. Booth #301. (800-333-3288; winchesterguns.com)

Weatherby
A pair of upper-level side-by-side models constitute Weatherby's new shotgun offerings for 2006. Designed for the most discriminating double-gun enthusiast, the new side- by-side Athena D'Italia Deluxe features a single inertia trigger and an action sporting sculpted frame heads and adorned with a Bolino-style game scene with Renaissance floral engraving. The AAA Fancy Turkish walnut stock has a classic straight-grip buttstock with 24-line-per-inch checkering and a hand-rubbed oil finish. In addition, the gun can be personalized with the owner's initials. It's available in 12-, 20- and 28-gauge, with either 26- or 28-inch barrels. SRP: $7,625 for the 12- and 20-gauge models, $7,789 for the 28-gauge.

| The new Athena D'Italia PG is targeted at shooters seeking a quality double gun with a pistol grip and single trigger. It has a rounded pistol grip and semi-beavertail forearm, in a hand-selected, oil-finished walnut stock with laser-cut "New Scottish" checkering at 20 lines per inch. The PG comes in 12-gauge with 28-inch barrels (SRP: $3,599), 20-gauge with 26-inch or 28-inch barrels (SRP: $3,599) and 28-gauge with 26-inch barrels (SRP: $3,725). Both the PG and Deluxe models come with a foam-lined, embossed takedown case. Booth #3275. (800-227-2016; weatherby.com)