If you are a shotgunner or have an interest, Stevens is a name that should appear on your short list. Overlooked far too often, Stevens is producing some premium models at ultra affordable prices. Case in point, take the Stevens 555. Few shotguns can match the MSRP of the 555 at just under 0—a steal for an over/under and none that I have found which can match the quality in the price range. This was readily apparent at the 2015 SHOT Show’s Media Day at the range. Comments from shooters often included how the 555 out shot models costing several thousand dollars on the trap, skeet and sporting clays ranges.
The Stevens 555 over/under is available in both 12 and 20 gauge chamberings, however, it is the whole package that truly sets it apart. The trigger is simply one piece that can make or break any gun and Stevens’ engineers took their time with the 555. Using a mechanical trigger, the first trigger pull sets the trigger for the second. While some may turn their noses at this concept, it is an advantage for the novice shotgunner or the neophyte to over/unders. By contrast, an experienced shotgunner using a high-end model would likely opt for an inertia trigger.
With an inertia trigger, the recoil causes the reset. This is an advantage if you have already developed the skills for fast follow-up shots. However, for the neophyte it can cause what essentially amounts to a double tap and lost birds with wasted ammunition. It can also turn a new shooter away from the shooting sports and cause apprehension or fear of shooting.
Off the soap box and back to gun… The 555 features a beautiful stock and forearm crafted from Turkish Walnut. The look is timeless and most often only associated with gun carrying a much heftier price tag. As an added feature, the 555 includes a crafted Schnabel forearm. In layman’s terms, it has a lip at the front on the forearm, which gives a solid tactile reference point for hand placement. Additionally, the Schnabel design allows for a shorter forearm. This saves weight and compliments features such as the aluminum receiver to reduce the mass weight of the gun. The 555 in 12 gauge tips the scales at six pounds, while the 20 gauge is a tad lighter at 5.5 pounds.
The 555 is equally at home with 2.75- or 3-inch shells. The chrome-lined barrels offer longevity and while the tang-mounted safety makes getting the 555 action-ready quick and intuitive. Other notable features include shell extractors, single-select trigger and five interchangeable choke tubes.
The 555 12 gauge uses a 28-inch barrel, 14.375-inch length of pull, 44.875-inch overall length and a 2.125-inch drop at the comb. The 20-gauge features a 26-inch barrel, 14.375-inch length of pull, 42.875-inch overall length and 2.25-inch drop at the comb.
|Stevens 555 12-gauge Shotgun|
|Barrel||28 inches; carbon steel with matte black finish|
|Caliber||12 gauge; available in 20, 28 and 410|
|Overall Length||44.875 inches|
|Stock||Wood with a matte finish|
|Features||Lightweight alloy receiver, Turkish walnut stock & forearm, single selective trigger, mechanical triggers, extractors, manual safety, 5 interchangeable choke tubes|
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