Beretta Sil­ver Pi­geon I

Roger Glover tests out Beretta’s 686 Sil­ver Pi­geon I Game Scene 12-bore, an all-rounder that of­fers some­thing for every­one at an ex­cel­lent price

Shooting Times & Country Magazine - - FRONT PAGE -

Ever keen to keep a fresh face on long-life mod­els, Beretta has launched the 686 Sil­ver Pi­geon I with the new Game Scene en­grav­ing. The Sil­ver Pi­geon range has in­volved many mod­els over the years. There have been some changes to the ac­tion, but es­sen­tially the heart of it all is close to the orig­i­nal de­sign. It works well with lit­tle need to change it.

The en­grav­ing pat­tern on the cheeks of the ac­tion does of­fer a new take on the dec­o­ra­tion of this gun. With ris­ing pheas­ants on the right side and flight­ing ducks on the other, there is no ques­tion that this is out­wardly a field gun with the best of sport­ing in­ten­tions. Clearly at this price point you are not go­ing to see any han­den­graved work, but for rolled or pressed en­grav­ing th­ese scenes do fit well with the scroll­work that abounds around the rest of the ac­tion.

With an ac­tion that has been in pro­duc­tion for so long, it is fair to say the de­sign is a proven one and renowned for its re­li­a­bil­ity. Lock-up is by Beretta’s fa­mous ta­pered round lugs, two pins from the breech­face en­gage with two holes ei­ther side of the bar­rels, cre­at­ing a rel­a­tively shal­low ac­tion as there is no lock­ing bar lower down un­der the bar­rels.

The trig­ger-plate ac­tion, like most over-and-un­der guns with a sin­gle trig­ger, uses an in­er­tia block sys­tem to se­lect the trig­ger sear for the sec­ond bar­rel. I mea­sured the trig­ger­pull sev­eral times as I thought the scale was read­ing wrong; it re­ally does break at 4lb 11oz, but you don’t feel any­thing like that on your fin­ger. Though a bit heavy, it breaks with a crisp snap with only the slight­est of take-ups. The bar­rel se­lec­tor on the top tang safety catch is smooth and notch-free in use — a de­light.

It is also easy to re­turn it to the safe po­si­tion if a shot was not taken.

The strik­ers are on the ver­ti­cal cen­tre­line of the ac­tion, which means there is less stress on them than if they were set di­ag­o­nally. The ham­mers are so de­signed to have ears to con­tact the strik­ers, and cut-outs so the off­set ears pass each other. Sim­ple and straight­for­ward, the mark of good de­sign.

The ejec­tors are tripped by the same rods that re-cock the ham­mers. Rib Length of pull Weight Fea­tures

“There is no ques­tion that this Beretta is out­wardly a field gun with the best of sport­ing in­ten­tions”

The game scenes — flight­ing ducks on the left side — fit well with the scroll­work on the ac­tion

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