Sometimes nostalgia corrupts your remembrances. Things I enjoyed in my youth are fondly remembered, but I no longer have to deal with them.
My new six-speed automatic Jeep is so much more reliable and easier to drive than my Dad’s old Jeep panel truck, but I fondly remember the old jeep.
This shotgun is a self-loader with a five-round detachable box magazine. I have several shotguns that do not even accept a light or optics mount of any type.
The design places the receiver behind the shooter’s face and the firing grip forward. This allows for a relatively long barrel in a short package.
The BP-12 doesn’t point like a standard shotgun, as the balance of the piece is very different than a standard-design shotgun. The shotgun’s natural point is quite different than a bullpup.
The bullpup must be handled like a rifle and driven toward the target like a rifle and aimed with more care than the usual shotgun.
While modern and effective, a bullpup must be learned and handled decisively to be effective.
Panzer Arms BP-12 Specifications:
|Overall Length:||30.7 Inches|
|Capacity:||5+1 (10rd Magazines Available)|
|Weight Unloaded:||7.8 lbs|
|Weight Loaded:||8.6 lbs|
|Barrel Length:||20 Inches|
How It Shoots
When you are firing the shotgun, your cheek is closer to the receiver than with most shotguns. Muzzle signature is more evident.
The Panzer Arms BP-12 shotgun isn’t difficult to use well, but these differences simply must be understood. The person who learns to use the shotgun well will find it a very effective firearm.
Those who do not care to practice and learn should choose a simpler firearm. The primary difference between this shotgun and others is that the firing grip is far ahead of the action.
The trigger bar goes through some tangents and this means the trigger will never be as nice as a standard-design shotgun, but then a crisp trigger is part of very few shotgun designs.
Learning to use the bolt release and magazine release isn’t difficult. Simply put aside time for dry-fire practice.
A few words on the shotgun’s quality of manufacture: the fit, finish and machining impress. The hardware fits well and the finish is always even.
The shotgun is delivered with AR-15 type sights, two magazines that hold five 12-gauge shells, and a cheek riser to allow the use of optical sights.
If you are using iron sights, then remove the cheek riser. There are two adjustment rings supplied with the shotgun that must be fitted after partial disassembly in order to change between standard and high-velocity loads.
The cocking handle may be reversed to allow racking from either side. Most right-handed shooters will have the cocking handle on the left side of the receiver.
The bolt handle allows plenty of leverage, racking the bolt isn’t difficult at all.
Other Performance Notes
Simply load the magazine with shells, slipping the shells under the feel lips and pressing them straight to the rear. I always tap magazines on a boot heel or hard surface to seat the shells.
This ensures feed reliability. Then, angle the magazines in the magazine well and be certain it is properly seated. Rack bolt to load the first shell and you are good to go for firing.
The safety lever is easy enough to manipulate. When firing the shotgun, it seems recoil is easier to manage than with a standard-configuration shotgun.
Fire, get the sights back on target and hit the target again. The large peep sights make for excellent high probability. The shotgun was fired with a variety of loads.
Some did not function properly. Panzer Arms states that a break-in period of up to 100 full-power shells may be needed. This seems reasonable.
Other tightly-fitted firearms require a modest break-in. Some full-power shells did not function properly, with the occasional short cycle, while some types came out of the box running.
Fiocchi full-power Aero slugs functioned and so did Remington full-power buckshot. Reduced-recoil loads will not function, at least with the full-power ring installed and during the initial break-in period.
Incidentally, during the test, I dropped a fully-loaded all-steel magazine on the concrete walk of the firing range. The magazine was scuffed of course, but not dented and it never failed to feed properly.
After the initial test, I would load full-power Remington Power Piston loads and rest easy. The shotgun is supplied with three choke tubes for open, modified and full choke use.
Conclusion: Panzer Arms BP-12
I like the Panzer Arms shotgun. It is well-made and should prove to be a formidable defender for the home or ranch.