Semiautomatic shotguns description
Bernardelli semiautomatic shotguns are gas operated utilizing our refined, low recoil technology (picture 1). The reliable, well-proven yet simple mechanism and flawless operation allow this autoloaders to be current and competitive against all other autoloaders with different working principles (inertia operated).
The undeniable pros of inertia operated semiautomatic shotguns shall be compared with the pros of the gas-operated ones (picture 2).
The pros of gas operation are:
- some of the pressure developed gets employed to operate the gun which greatly reduces the felt recoil over that of other systems;
- as the recoil is greatly reduced, every load after the first can be shot in line with the first;
- as the RETURN SPRING (40) of our autoloaders is on the MAGAZINE (39), the actual return of the spring does not generate any upward movement which translates into better shooting of every load after the previous one;
- our autoloader can fire all loads from the super light to the magnum as long as the loads themselves are in perfect condition.
As previously mentioned, the Bernardelli semiautomatic shotgun functions by employing the pressure generated by the cartridge being fired. The pressure is very high in the chamber and decreases as it travels towards the muzzle. Two holes are drilled exactly 320 mm from the beginning of the barrel to intercept the gas generated by the load whose pressure is needed to operate the gun. If holes were drilled less than 320 mm from the beginning of the barrel, there would be too much variation between the pressure generated by one load versus another; to the contrary if the holes were drilled further away from the beginning of the barrel, the pressure would not be enough to operate the gun.
The gas goes through the two holes and into a cylinder welded to the barrel, which causes the PISTON ASSY (89) to move backwards. As the assy moves backwards, every part connected to it moves backwards with it – from the COCKING ROD SUPPORT (88), TO THE COCKING ROD (95), SLIDE and LOCKING BOLT ASSY (21). By moving backwards, the locking bolt together with the EXTRACTOR (28) drags the chambered cartridge until it hits the EXTRACTOR TRIP, which extracts the cartridge from the RECEIVER (9).
The shooting sequence is complete and the LOCKING BOLT is totally backwards and against the RECOIL SHOULDER (7) of the frame. Reloading a new cartridge in the barrel is possible through the RETURN SPRING that advances the PISTON ASSY and all components connected to it, one of them being the LOCKING BOLT ASSY which chambers the new load now ready to fire. The entire process is featured in videos 1 and videos 2 that describe the steps of the shooting and reloading sequences in detail.
Semiautomatic shotgun in 12ga
Our semiautomatic shotgun in 12ga comes with a 2-position PISTON ASSY. With 28- to 32-g loads, we suggest positioning the assy with the “LIGHT” (picture 5) arrow pointing forward. With 38- to 56-g loads, we suggest positioning the assy with the “HEAVY” (picture 6) arrow pointing forward.
Other gun makers employ regulation valves that, theoretically, make it possible to fire every load without changing the position of the piston assy. However once powder residues start to deposit inside these valves, they rapidly loose their effectiveness.
Semiautomatic shotgun in 20ga
The 20ga is built in the same way as the 12ga autoloader. It is a gas operated semiautomatic featuring some dedicated 20-ga components next to other components common to the caliber 12. Just like the 12ga, the 20ga semiautomatic shotgun comes with a 2-position piston assy ((LIGHT and HEAVY) but also with a self-regulating device to automatically switch between light and heavy loads (please refer to technical description on the website).
Our autoloaders are built in compliance with very strict quality standards starting form the selection of the best possible materials.
The frame comes from a solid block of 7075-aluminum alloy, T6 temper .This extra light alloy has plenty of applications in the aerospace industry and is also called ERGAL 55 as it features a 55 Kg/mm2 resistance, which is similar to that of steel. Being extremely light (2.7 Kg/dm3), this alloy makes it possible to machine a component with the same specifications as steel (7.8 Kg./dm3) but much lighter. The alloy is employed in the FRAME and in the MAGAZINE.
Bars of special Cr-Moly steel with a 110 Kg/mm2 load resistance , hardened and tempered are gun drilled first and then finished inside and out: from chrome lining to bluing and to an additional lapping of the chrome lined bores to improve both surface look and ballistic performance. Barrels come standard in different lengths and with interchangeable choke tubes. Bernardelli has recently introduced a new series of barrels called “Performer” in 12 and 20ga (please refer to the technical description on the website).
Stocks and forends are machined by specialized Italian companies starting from blanks of select Turkish walnut.
All our semiautomatic shotguns share the same high quality materials.
However they can come with:
- Stocks and forends in wood or polymer;
- Class 2 (entry level models) or Class 3+ wood (deluxe models).
- Anodized or nickel plated frames
- Different engraving.
Attention to every detail is paid while building, accessorizing and packing all autoloaders in our line. A 3-year warranty, combined with an impeccable post sale customer service, is the extra element that convinces every one of our clients they are making the right choice.
For additional information about the way our guns are built, their operation and safe handling, please refer to the “Instruction Manual” page on our website where you will find everything you need to know about Bernardelli semiautomatic shotguns.