Cheaper Than Dirt! staffers covering the 2014 SHOT Show in Las Vegas have filed their first set of follow-up reports on new shotguns introduced at the show. In this edition, Browning has added models to its High Grade shotgun program and has expanded the 725 Citori lineup. CZ-USA adds new models in its pump-action, semi-auto and over/under lines.
The Browning High Grade program moves into its second year with a pair of full-side-plate Citori over/unders. The extended side-plates create a larger canvas that is perfect for additional embellishment by highly skilled engravers. Sharply checkered, finely finished, high-grade wood is hand fit to the colored, case-hardened receiver. A Grade III and Grade VI 12-gauge model will be offered, each with a 28-inch ventilated top rib barrel. A combined total of up to 500 High Grade shotguns will be produced.
The new Grade III Citori High Grade receiver features high-relief scroll engraving with a colored, case-hardened finish. The stock and forearm feature Grade III/IV walnut in a gloss finish and 22-lpi cut checkering. An ABS Elite case is included with the Grade III Citori. SRP: $4,669
The new Grade VI Citori High Grade receiver has a colored, case-hardened finish with full-coverage high-relief engraving that features gold enhancement and mallards on the left, pheasants on the right. The stock and forearm feature Grade V/VI walnut in a gloss finish with sharp 22-lpi checkering. The new Grade VI Citori will be supplied with a Browning High Grade Canvas/Crazy Horse Leather fitted gun case. SRP: $7,339
For 2014 Browning will expand the 725 Citori line to include nimble new 20-gauge models that offer reduced weight along with Browning’s Fire Lite mechanical trigger system, full-width hinge pin and tapered locking bolt design, InFlex II recoil pad, and Browning’s new Invector DS choke tube system. The new Citori 725 20-gauge will be offered in Field and Sporting models. The 725 20-gauge Field will feature a Silver nitride-finish receiver accented with high-relief engraving of game-bird scenes.
The stock and forearm are in gloss oil finish in Grade II/III walnut, and it’s available with 26- or 28-inch barrels. SRP: $2,469. The new Citori 725 20-gauge Sporting model will feature a Silver nitride-finish receiver with gold-accented target engraving. Ventilated top and side ribs are featured in 28-, 30- or 32-inch barrel lengths. The stock and forearm feature a gloss oil finish Grade III/IV walnut stock with close-radius pistol grip and palm swell. SRP: $3,529
Other new additions in Browning’s 725 Citori lineup are the new 725 Trap and 725 Skeet models in 12-gauge only. The 725 Trap will be offered with 30- or 32-inch barrels with a high-post rib, and it will be available with standard or adjustable comb-stock options. SRP: $3,339 to $3,739. The new 725 Skeet will be offered in 28- or 30-inch barrel lengths with a standard or adjustable comb stock. SRP: $3,139 to $3,529.
New models in CZ’s pump-action, semi-auto, and over/under line become the additions to CZ’s new smoothbore offerings this year. Leading the pump-action introductions is the 612 Field (SRP: $389). It is designed as a moderately priced pump-action shotgun that can handle most smoothbore chores. Chambered for 12 gauge 3-inch shells, it can also handle 2 ¾-inch loads. It features a walnut stock and a 28-inch barrel threaded for interchangeable choke tubes (IC, M and F are included). The metalwork is finished in satin chrome.
The 620 Youth (SRP: $349) pump-action 20-gauge is chambered for 3-inch shells, but also handles 2¾-inch loads. It features a synthetic stock with a reduced 12 ¾-inch length of pull to appeal to smaller-framed shooters and a 24-inch barrel. The barrel is threaded for interchangeable choke tubes (IC, M and F), which are included with the gun.
The 620 Big Game (SRP: $399) is a 20 gauge pump-action, synthetic-stocked smoothbore designed for use with slugs. Threaded for interchangeable chokes, the 22-inch barrel is equipped with an extended rifled choke tube to improve accuracy with Foster-style slugs. A Weaver-style cantilever rail rides atop the barrel to allow the mounting of a scope or red-dot sight.
The 612 Home Defense (SRP: $409) is a no-frills 12 gauge pump-action with a synthetic stock. It features an 18.5-inch barrel with a fixed-cylinder choke and a prominent blade front sight. In addition, a 26-inch field barrel with a vent-rib barrel is included to make it a more versatile gun. The 26-inch barrel is threaded for interchangeable choke tubes, and accepts all CZ choke tubes. The shotgun comes with a Modified choke.
CZ’s new semi-auto shotguns include a number of very useful models. The 712 Practical (SRP: $699) is the first CZ shotgun designed specifically for the increasingly popular 3-Gun games. Chambered for 12 gauge shells, it features a 22-inch barrel threaded for CZ choke tubes. Five flush-mounted choke tubes are included. An ATI fluted magazine extension provides a 9+1 capacity; it extends slightly past the barrel to help protect the muzzle and flush chokes when firing from barricade positions. The buttstock is a six-position adjustable model that is installed on a commercial-spec tube that allows aftermarket customization.
The 720 ALS (SRP: $599) is a 20 gauge semi-auto with a 24-inch barrel fitted with the fully adjustable ATI Akita buttstock. This allows shooters to change the length of pull from 12 to 14 inches with the push of a button. It also allows three different comb heights via easy screw adjustments, meaning the 720 ALS can be fitted to a number of shooters.
The Sporter Standard Grade Adjustable Rib (SRP: $3,122) is an over/under designed to allow the shooter to adjust his or her point of impact from a flat-shooting gun for Sporting Clays and Skeet to a higher pattern for Trap. Chambered in 12 gauge and available with a 30- or 32-inch barrel, it is based upon CZ’s Standard Grade Sporter, but equipped with Moneymaker Guncraft’s adjustable rib and a buttstock with a four-way adjustable parallel comb. The combination allows discriminating shooters to alter the point of impact to suit any clay target game. It is supplied with a set of six interchangeable Kick’s Tom Mack stainless-steel choke tubes.
The Canvasback Gold (SRP: $827 to $959) is a reimagining of the CZ Canvasback O/U. The black chrome receiver is lightly engraved with two gold birds inlaid on each side, and solid mid-ribs between the barrels for a nostalgic look. Pistol grip stocks offer full control. The Canvasback features a single selective trigger; and the extractor partially lifts the shells from the chamber when the action is opened. The Canvasback Gold will be available in 12, 20, 28 and .410 gauge. All models are made on gauge-specific sized frames. The 28 gauge and .410 are available with 28-inch barrels only; the 12 and 20 gauge models are available with either 26- or 28-inch barrels.
The new Lady Sterling (SRP: $1,281) is built upon CZ’s Upland Sterling platform, but with stock dimensions that make it easier for female shooters to properly mount the gun while keeping her head up and eyes on target. The design reduces length of pull and changes the pitch angles. It is equipped with a single extractor rather than individual ejectors, features laser-stippled grip panels, and is chambered for 12 gauge 3-inch shells (but will handle 2.75-inch shells), and is available with a 28-inch barrel.
Will 2014 be the year of the shotgun? Share your picks in the comment section.
Editor’s Note: Our staff articles are supplemented with reporting by SHOT Business Daily, reprinted with permission. SHOT Daily, produced by The Bonnier Corporation and the National Shooting Sports Foundation, covers all facets of the yearly firearms-industry show. To view a 2014 digital version of SHOT Daily, click here.