Reader Advice on Beretta 391 Trigger Group Removal

Dear Readers,

A while ago I commented on the “Beretta 391 stuck trigger problem” and asked for suggestions on how to get the darn thing out. Here are some of the suggestions I received. Don’t forget to push the bolt release button as you work the trigger group out.

Hi Bruce, I’m at work today and not supposed to be surfing, but couldn’t help notice your stuck trigger commentary.

My experience has been that yes, the first time getting these out is a bear. Breakfree soak might help. However, once you do get them out, if you will run your finger down the inside of the receiver (SLOWLY!) I bet you will find a slight sharp lip in the receiver at the outside edge. I file that lip flush with a small file and trigger removal gets much easier in the future. Found this lip on 6 in a row and it might be coming from a final milling operation on the bottom outside of receiver.


I read your update regarding the difficulty with removing a 391 trigger group, at least on the first try. I sure can identify. I was able to remove the unit after my miserable, failing attempt at being Hercules. Succumbing to the genetic predisposition in my family for impatience leading to rather aggressive “fix-it” behavior, I hammered the darn thing right out.

Now, before you wince so tight as to not be able to finish your coffee, please understand that I have learned to work with my impatience for the preservation of the delicate and easily damaged items in my life. I covered the trigger guard with a healthy dose of cloth, made sure I missed the pistol grip, and gently tapped the group out of its housing. I then liberally lubricated for the return trip. After ten minutes of pulling to no avail, the hammer job took about 15 seconds. No sweat.

Keep up the good work!



I’ve found that the trigger assembly on my 391 detaches easiest when I “bump” the assembly forward about 1/8″ to 1/4″ and THEN pull down/out with substantial force. I too had a terrible time getting the mechanism out of the gun the first time…. and a heck of a time getting it back into the gun too!

Give it a go… T.A.


I am the happy owner of both a 12 & 20 391. I too had great difficulty attempting to remove the trigger group from each – but was able to figure out a way not to cause damage doing so.

1st step after removing the cross pin was to tap the trigger guard forward a bit (about a quarter inch). I used a hard leather mallet for this. I know few people have ever seen one of these, much less own one. An alternative would be to lay a small, thin piece of wood on the back of the trigger guard and tap on that with a small hammer until one sees the group shift forward that 1/4 inch.

Next step was to place a wood dowel crossways just ahead of the front of the trigger group. (About a half-inch forward of where the shiny shell lifter plate pivots).

Taking another dowel (3/8 diameter), I inserted this under the front end of the trigger group, and using the 1st dowel, created a lever. The leverage was obtained by pushing down on the dowel inserted under the front end of the group. The dowel laid crossways provided a pivot point and protected the bottom of the receiver from damage.

On my 12 gauge I broke a couple of dowels before I was able to get the group to break loose. On my 20 I had to abandon using a dowel and used a flat bladed screwdriver to push down on. (I retained the 1st dowel to protect the receiver).

After the groups broke loose one has to resort to brute force and grab the trigger guard and start wiggling, yanking etc. until the SOB comes out.

From my observations it appears there are two reasons that these trigger groups are so difficult to remove. The first is that the polymer body of the group is bigger than the opening of the receiver. My solution to this problem was obtained by lightly sanding off some of the polymer with a moto-dremel tool.

The second reason I felt made extraction so difficult was a burr of steel that Berretta left along each side of the bottom edge of the receiver. This burr acted like the barb of a fishhook – the harder you pulled the deeper it dug into the polymer. I filed this off.

Now I can take the groups out by hand, using neither special tools nor assistance from NFL linemen. I am not sure if this was the intent of Berretta – but they manufacture guns, not clean them.


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1 Response to Reader Advice on Beretta 391 Trigger Group Removal

  1. Bill says:

    Possibly an easier solution would be a FABARM XLR 5? Just saying.


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