Benelli M121 Reliability


Jeff White
March 8, 2003, 10:40 AM
I've decided to drive out to Prescott Valley and take the Louis Awerbuck shotgun course Denny Hansen is hosting. I've got a lot of experience with rifles, but my shotgun training is limited to what the city requires of patrol officers, which isn't much.

I have a Benelli M121 that I'd like to use in the course. I like it, it's never malfunctioned and it's light. I don't want to drive 1500 miles and have a non-funtioning shotgun though. Will the Benelli stand up to the hard use?

My other options are a Remington 1100 with 20" barrel with rifle sights and Choate pistol grip stock (looks like a FAL stock) or I can take one of the department's 870s (we carry ARs in the squads now so they are just sitting in the vault).

Any recommendations?


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March 8, 2003, 12:00 PM
I would say whatever you decide to take, take two of them. Either the Benelli and the 1100 or a pair of 870s should do nicely.

Dave McCracken
March 8, 2003, 03:22 PM
Take the one, or two, that are most likely to be in your hands during incidents with an high Pucker Factor.

This IS training, right? Train with what you'll use....

El Tejon
March 8, 2003, 03:40 PM
Thumbs up for the old 121. However, I use 870s. Stupid gun nut.:D

March 8, 2003, 05:20 PM
What will you use yourself?

I've heard nothing from Benelli owners but good things (my Dad owns one and is very happy). Still our family owns more 870s than anything else.

Jeff White
March 8, 2003, 06:42 PM
Whatever I take will be come the carry shotgun. That goes without saying. I won't invest the time in training on a weapon I don't intend to use. My question was more on the reliability of the shotgun. I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a shotgunner. I do want to add that to the toolbox though.

I know that they don't make a sidesaddle for the M121 and I understand there are some issues with using it on the M1 Super 90. Any ideas on how to carry spare ammo? I hate those buttstock cuffs. Never found one that didn't flop around.


El Tejon
March 8, 2003, 06:52 PM
Jeff, have you tried the Milt Sparks butt cuff? Highly recommended!:) Those hairy-chested Westerners know what they are doing.

I dislike them because of opshoulder drills, especially when one handed and you have to cant the weapon. Yikes, time for extra reverse curls.:D

*edited to add: if you want to try one out, I gave one to Dan Flory. PM him and he'll ship it out to you and you can try it out (or give it to me to ship--always with the "poor college student" routine). BTW, it's black, of course, for added tacticality:D

March 8, 2003, 07:42 PM
El Tejon- Good idea! And most people believe that "poor college kid" routine, so much that they let me borrow books and gear for free :p

Jeff- I can send that Sparks cuff out to you on Monday. It fits tight as a drum and doesn't even move when you have it in place. Plus, the fit of the shell loops are perfect.

Dave McCracken
March 8, 2003, 11:15 PM
Lots of options on ammo carriers, but none IMO are a pure blessing. A couple are....

The Viet Nam style 12 round pouches. String them on a web belt or whatever.

The bandoliers made to carry M-1 Garand clips. 3 shells fit in each pouch, IIRC.

The waterfowlers shell belt.

Someone, can't recall who, offers a 5 shot belt carrier of good design from the pics.

Butt cuffs hinder off side employment, IMO.

The Speedfeed stocks seem to be sensitive to bumps, unloading without intent.

Shells on the sling cause a pendulum effect, avoid these like the plague.

Some of the Black BDU vendors have various keepers.

Benellis are good shotguns of great durability and good reliability, I hear. The few I've run across have been cherished.Blowback actions do need a non flexing mount and stance to keep from glitching.


March 9, 2003, 11:08 AM
I agree that the butt cuff (am I the only one that hates that name?) is a hindrance for off side shooting. I actually use this Brit-tish utility bag that I have to hold shells. But it doesn't have a divider to separate buck n' slugs. I suppose I'll have to sew one in one of these days...

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