One Gun, Two Barrels


Dear Bruce

Thank you very much for your reply to my questions regarding my Vostock MU8. I bought the gun from a guy who apparently used to be a soviet coach , a Mr.Robert Mikoulenko.Do you perhaps know anything about him? This MU8 of mine used to be his personal gun.

A friend of mine has his Beretta ASE Gold Skeet for sale.The gun has never been fired.What is your opinion of it?I am really interested in getting a gun with both Skeet and Trap barrels in order to use the same action for different disciplines.That was one of my reasons for buying the Vostock but it turned out to be a bit of a bother to change the stocks because of all the screws that had to be loosened and fastened.I suppose there is no real need to have one gun for all disciplines but I would like to pack only one gun case when I go on a shooting trip and be able to shoot most standard disciplines.What do you think of the principle?

If I do buy the ASE Gold Skeet do you perhaps know where I could get a set of Trap barrels for it . Faxes to the U.K. , Beretta USA and the local Beretta agents have not been of help.I understand that I would have to have them fitted to the gun.

Thank you very much

Etienne
Zaire

Dear Etienne,

No, I didn’t know Mikoulenko, but then again, I didn’t get to meet all the Russian coaches. They had a far more diverse Olympic coaching system than we did in the US during the 70s and 80s.

The ASE 90 (as it is called in the US) is an excellent gun. Absolutely top class. The problem with the gun in the US is that it sells for the same price as the Perazzi Mirage/MX-8. While I believe that the ASE is as good, or in many respects better, than the Perazzi, it does not have the name recognition. Consequently, sales of the ASE in the US are very, very low.

There is absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t be able to get a second set of barrels fit to the ASE 90, but you should contact Beretta, Italy directly for this because you will want EXACTLY the same rib. Beretta changes rib and barrel configurations more often than I change socks, so it is important to go to the source.

As a caveat, my friends who have traveled directly to Beretta in person have been treated marvelously and have gotten all sorts of special goodies from the factory. Those who have tried to deal by phone, fax or mail have learned to wait … and wait… and wait. Beretta service, unless it is at arm’s length, is simply awful.

Perhaps this may be a solution for you: I shoot both ISU bunker and ISU skeet with a 30″ B-25 Browning Broadway. I have had screw chokes installed by Briley. One gun for both games. The 30″ barrels seem to do well for both. Something to consider and MUCH easier than trying to get a second set of barrels fit. It is more difficult to find one gun which is stocked and balanced in a manner suitable for both games, but it can be done if you look hard enough and are confident modifying a gun. While I prefer the B-25 Brownings, some Perazzis and Berettas are also well balanced. The problem is always with the balance of the newer guns due to the added weight of the screw chokes. It is usually better to get a solid choke gun and have Briley screw choke it.

The final alternative is two separate guns. More to carry around, but much easier to obtain.

Best regards,

Bruce Buck
Shotgun Report’s Technoid
(Often in error, never in doubt.)

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1 Response to One Gun, Two Barrels

  1. I suffered the same problem when I wanted a second set of barrels for my Beretta EELL (12ga) Skeet gun. Finally, I went to Briley and asked them to install a set of chokes on my skeet barrels. They advised against cutting into a beautiful set of chromed barrels and referred me to Rich Cole, who up to that time, was unfamiliar to me. In any event, he had a selection of barrels and fitted a set for me. That was many years ago and they still work perfectly.

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