Gun test

Over the past few years Sauer have seen sev­eral gaps in the mar­ket and have re­leased more af­ford­able guns with­out los­ing the qual­ity of prod­uct

Sporting Gun - - CONTENTS - WORDS & PIC­TURES SHANE ROBIN­SON

Ex­clu­sive to Sport­ing Gun, Shane Robin­son tests the new Sauer Apol­lon.

“I was a lit­tle ex­cited to fi­nally get my hands on a Sauer that is af­ford­able”

With the Glo­ri­ous Twelfth just around the corner it’s time to dust off the load­ers kit and get the dogs back un­der con­trol prior to pick­ing-up. With that in mind, it’s time to break out some game guns to show you all in an­tic­i­pa­tion for the forth­com­ing game sea­son.

This month I’ve been lucky enough to be given the new Sauer Apol­lon to take a look at. I had heard that there was some­thing new com­ing to mar­ket when I last spoke to Ian Spicer of Blaser Sport­ing UK (im­porters for Blaser, Mauser, Sauer and Mi­nox) and I was re­ally look­ing for­ward to get­ting my hands on what­ever it was!

Sauer his­tory

Sauer is the old­est Ger­man man­u­fac­turer still ac­tive to­day. Sit­u­ated in the town of Isny in South­ern Ger­many, the com­pany was formed in 1751 by Lorenz Sauer in the “Suhl” re­gion of Ger­many. The J.P Sauer and Son as we know it to­day was cre­ated in 1840 when Johan Paul Sauer took over the com­pany.

As with most com­pa­nies, you need to re­lease some­thing new ev­ery year for the big shows and this year I’m pleased to say that Sauer has re­leased two new shot­guns. Now, nor­mally, Sauer shot­guns are way out of my price range, but when Ian brought over the sam­ple I have to say I was a lit­tle ex­cited as I fi­nally could get my hands on a Sauer that is af­ford­able. Over the past few years Sauer have seen sev­eral gaps in the mar­ket and have re­leased more af­ford­able guns with­out los­ing the qual­ity of prod­uct.

Two guns

The Apol­lon and the Artemis are both game guns and are avail­able in 12 and 20-bore and in 28in or 30in. I was given a 30in Apol­lon to take a look at.

With RRPs from £1,550 to £1,750 de­pend­ing on spec, it’s def­i­nitely pitched at the right price in the mar­ket. At a lit­tle less than the Brown­ing 725 or Beretta 690, it will cer­tainly get a lot of in­ter­est.

The gun comes in the stan­dard maker’s

plas­tic case with a set of five flush fit chokes and a war­ranty book­let. I found it went to­gether smoothly and han­dled nicely.

The stock and fore-end were a nice grained Turk­ish wal­nut. My pic­tures don’t re­ally do it jus­tice. I liked the Prince of Wales grip and the fact that there was no palm swell or cast, which as you know is a plus for me be­ing left-handed. It mounted nicely in ei­ther shoul­der although a lit­tle high in the comb for me nat­u­rally, but with some ad­just­ment I got there in the end. The four-lock An­son ac­tion was plain black with the Sauer logo sit­u­ated on the hinge pin. Un­der­stated but nicely done with the laser en­grav­ing on the un­der­side of the ac­tion be­ing a lot nicer than some of the laser etch­ings on other makes.

The che­quer­ing was nicely lined and well cut, but it was a lit­tle shal­low for me with a feel of a well-used gun as op­posed to new – if you know what I mean! The sin­gle se­lec­tive safety was a nice size and very pos­i­tive in its move­ment. Although strangely for a game gun it didn’t have an au­to­matic safety – not that that both­ered me be­cause when­ever I bor­row my good lady’s 20-bore game gun on a day out I’m al­ways for­get­ting to take the safety off!

Ladies gun

Speak­ing of ladies. This is where I men­tion the Sauer “Artemis”, which has been brought specif­i­cally to mar­ket for the lady shooter. There has been a mas­sive up­turn in ladies shoot­ing over the last few years and this has spurred a few man­u­fac­tur­ers into mak­ing ladiesonly op­tions avail­able – a shrewd move. I get a lot of ladies com­ing for tu­ition and most of them will strug­gle a lit­tle with the stan­dard shot­gun.

The Artemis has the same four lock ac­tion and bar­rels, but fit­ted with a Monte Carlo stock and red re­coil pad. Giv­ing a length of pull around 13.6in, the stock is also shaped to take in the ladies fig­ur­ing.

Bar­rels

The 30in chrome-lined bar­rels were nicely put to­gether and the ejec­tors were crisp as you’d ex­pect from a new gun. The bar­rels, like most nowa­days, are steel proof and the cham­bers are 3in should you get the odd duck drive, flight­pond or wild­fowl­ing op­tion. Although I would never take some­thing that nice out on the marsh.

The 8mm rib led down the stan­dard game gun brass bead.

Laser

The laser en­grav­ing is nicely done – much bet­ter than some of the laser etch­ings on other brands

Che­quer­ing

Although it felt a lit­tle shal­low, the che­quer­ing was nicely lined and well cut

An­son ac­tion

The four-lock An­son ac­tion is plain black with the Sauer logo on the hinge pin

Chrome-lined

The chrome-lined bar­rels were nicely put to­gether and steel proofed with 3in cham­bers

Spares

The Apol­lon comes with a set of five flush fit chokes and key

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