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Thread: Discreet growth in popularity of the 16 bore?

  1. #1

    Discreet growth in popularity of the 16 bore?

    Hello everyone.

    Recently I've noticed a steady trickle of articles praising the sixteen bore shotgun, such as the one mentioned on the cover of Fieldsports magazine:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I also saw this advert in Shooting Times for new 16 bore shotguns built on dedicated actions:

    2016-07-19_10-01-00 by pinemarten, on Flickr

    Earlier this year, Browning launched a 16 bore version of its' A5 shotgun:

    A5 Sweet Sixteen

    Is this a real phenomenon back by any sales figures or just a lot of PR? It can't be just that because they're making products so they must think they can sell them.

    I just want to point out if it does grow into a genuine trend that I was into 16 bore before it sold out and went all mainstream.

  2. #2
    I've had my Sauer 16bore hammer gun for 40yrs and love it but haven't used it for a long while

  3. #3
    Also in 'The Field' - Mike Yardley (remember?) reviews Boxhall and Edmiston o/u 16bore.

    Browning's 16bore self-loader is perhaps more of a relaunch, though.

    A 16 made by a maker who scales the action to the bore is likely to be a good few ounces lighter than similar 12bore, and with loads in the 15/16th to 1 1/16th range is not running at absurdly high pressures. With the current popularity of cumbersome great o/u guns over proper game-guns, this might be seen as an advantage; while avoiding the dog-walking-on-its-hind-legs phenomenon of 1oz loads in 28bores that in any case weigh as much as 12s.

    The purpose of adverts, 'review' articles and so on is not, of course to bear witness to an increase in sales: but rather to stimulate one.

  4. #4
    I must admit I love that Razzini round action. Their 20b is a lovely gun to handle.

  5. #5
    I'd be pleased if cheap 16-65mm clay cartridges became available in this country. With plastic wads and everything.

  6. #6
    In this day and age, when everyone seems to be trying to be different/interesting/unusual, I think the 16bore will be a winner. The problem will be getting a good range of ammunition.

  7. #7
    I've had a good look at the recent Browning 16bores, and they're very nice. I went with a 20 bore, rather than the 16, because of the cartridge issue - there isn't (yet?) a wide range of them, and they're expensive just now. At the Holts stand at the Scottish Game Fair, there was a pair of Woodward O/Us in 16 bore, original case, looking as if the came almost straight out of the factory, but built pre-war. They even had spare barrels for each gun which looked brand new. Can't imagine what they'll go for, but I expect it'd buy me a couple of new cars.......
    Ballistically, the 16 bore makes good sense as it's a 'square' load (as wide as tall) in typical load weights and you avoid shot damage from 'stacking'. Having patterned 20 bores with 32g shot loads, the charge is a bird mincer out to about 30yds and after that the pattern deteriorates quite quickly. I finished up shooting 25/26g out of the 20b with good results.
    Hopefully the modern 16's will catch on - it's a really nice calibre

  8. #8
    Well if people start buying sixteen bores again, the ammunition supply will follow. There's not a huge range available in the UK compared to France for example where it was for a long time the most popular cartridge, so there are still a lot of shotguns in use. For me, the difficulty is that there's only a single manufacturer who make a bismuth load for duck flighting and they cost an absolute fortune, something like 2 a cartridge, assuming you can even find them. Actually I should probably start looking now for next season. Oh, hang on, maybe while I'm in France!

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by 243varmint View Post
    I must admit I love that Razzini round action. Their 20b is a lovely gun to handle.
    have to agree I'm hankering on a rizzini side by side in 16 bore
    regards pete

  10. #10
    16 gauge SxS shotguns were very common when I was young, and my first shotgun was a Stevens 16. Much later in life, I bought and restored a Fox Sterlingworth 16 gauge, then bought a Browning Citori. Ammunition is not to be found in the discount stores like Walmart. You have to go to a real gun store, or a Cabelas or Bass Pro Shop, and load your own. It is like a big brother to the 28 gauge - all you need for most large bird shooting.

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