Century Arms Chinese made shotguns


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BigGunsMoreFun
February 23, 2008, 11:59 PM
Does anybody have any experience with the cheap, Chinese made shotguns being sold by Century Arms?

I am thinking about picking up one of the SPM-410 Coach Shotgun, 410 Ga. models. My grandson is 12 years old and wants a double barrel shotgun. He is an experienced shooter with a handgun and a rifle but has never done any skeet or trap shooting. He wants to try it out and he picked this gun.

I figure for $180 NIB, I can't go wrong. Even if it is a junker, were not talking the need for any great accuracy here since he will be learning to shoot clays. I figure once he learns and decides he is going to stay interested then I will buy him a nicer gun.

For the price of one of these I don't see how I can go wrong. If it lasts 6 months to a year, I've got my moneys worth out of it. I'm probably going to go ahead and buy one, I just want to know has anyone had any bad experiences with them.

Is it an okay shooter? Does it have any problems like not firing everytime or blowing up in the shooters face because it is cheap Chinese made metal?

Any comments, constructive criticisms, good or bad experiences are more than welcome. I like to hear from unbiased shooters, gunsmiths or just parts changers like me. Please all you wise guys that want to knock everything that does not cost over $2000 or knock it just because it is made in China, give me a break and hold back on the hand waving and spittle flying heh?:cuss:

What I'm looking for here is good, honest opinions without the snobbery and bias I see on many threads just because a gun is not made by a great brand name company and does not cost thousands.:D

All constructive feedback will be very much appreciated.

Thanks,

Joe

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Lucky
February 24, 2008, 12:16 AM
Problem with Chinese guns is that they're not light, easily modified, or tactical. It is generally accepted that their steel-making techniques are antiquated, and thus result in a superior product to more modern and efficient methods.

If you are ok with heavy and simple go for it. Got the 20-gauge coach and it shoots fine. Screws work loose, but that could be common to late 1800's guns.

For what it's worth plastic-making doesn't seem to be a strong-suit of their gun makers, and woodworking seems to have room for improvement sometimes too.

W.E.G.
February 24, 2008, 12:22 AM
A .410 is an expert's gun when it comes to shooting moving clay targets.

Tully M. Pick
February 24, 2008, 01:03 AM
A .410 is an expert's gun when it comes to shooting moving clay targets.

Yeah, I don't recommend them to people for just this reason. Probably better to start him off on a 20-gauge.

owlhoot
February 24, 2008, 01:11 AM
I think WEG is right. You obviously want the boy to have some success and that is going to be tough. If he rarely gets a hit, his interest is likely to flag. I would suggest a 12 ga. and cut the stock to fit him and install a pad. The Winchester low noise, low recoil ammunition kicks less than a 20 ga. A twelve year old would have no trouble handling it.

I have three or four Chinese shotguns and they take a beating. They are not junk.

rocinante
February 24, 2008, 12:15 PM
I just got a Century JW2000 12 gauge coach gun for cowboy action shooting. For 200 bucks I am very pleased with it. Yes it is heavier, stiff, etc but it is solid, the wood is nice with checkering, the bluing decent. The workmanship is not as bad as folks would lead you to believe. I mean I opened it, put two shells in, cocked two hammers, pulled two triggers, heard two booms, pulled out two empty shells, closed and repeat. Job done. I don't see that cycle failing for any reason and if it did I got a dandy club I would not think would break. I had spent a lot of money on the pistols and rifle and leather and clothes and did not want to go whole hog on the shotgun. The distances you shoot in that sport doesn't require any "superb" shotgun.

IMO it would probably suck as a skeet gun. SxS coach guns aren't as well thought of as over unders or automatics. A longer barrel would track better. Not the right shotgun for the task. I have a saiga 12 which is the ultimate for home defense and tactical 3 gun competition but it isn't the best for skeet.

My only real complaints with my chinese shotgun is I had to tighten up all the screws and the extractor doesn't have any spring on it to push the shells up enough to get your fingers easily on the rims. No plastic that I can see on my shotgun.

If you do get the kid a SxS get some snap caps. Dry firing can break firing pins on SxS shotguns.

Lucky
February 24, 2008, 04:58 PM
rocinante the store owner told me the lack of spring ejector is for CAS, but you can polish the chamber and then break the gun and point the barrel 10 degrees forward from vertical, and toss the shells clear to the direction behind you.

rocinante
February 24, 2008, 05:23 PM
Thanks for the info Lucky and that will work but CAS doesn't want the ejectors that pop the shells clear of the chambers when you break it open. All the extractor travels is about a quarter of an inch and a small spring that pushes it up that much would let you get your finger under the shell rim to pull it out. I will get use to tilting and hoping they slide out but I think it would be nice to break it open, pull the shells, put new ones in, and close without any extra motion or theatrics.

horge
February 24, 2008, 05:55 PM
If you are talking about the scatterguns from Zhong Zhou,
we get the same stuff imported here (Philippines). You need to factor in
the cost of serious fluff and buff (smoothening). The steel is fine.

Most owners here wind up selling them within 2-3 years to a security-guard
firm or other, and moving up to a Mossberg or Rem, or at least one of the
newer shotties out of Turkey. hth

glockgod
February 24, 2008, 05:55 PM
Helpfull hint-Use Winchester AA target loads in your SASS shotgun, they slide out much easier when you do the "SASS Tilt". I think it has to do with the cases being smooth as opposed to ribbed. Polishing the first couple inches of the chambers helps too.

Chris B
February 24, 2008, 06:04 PM
I would suggest a 12 ga. and cut the stock to fit him and install a pad. The Winchester low noise, low recoil ammunition kicks less than a 20 ga.


+1

BigGunsMoreFun
February 25, 2008, 05:12 PM
I appreciate all the feedback. I did suggest a 20 or 12 gauge to him. He tried shooting the ones I have. He did okay for a few rounds but got sore and tired after that. He used 2-1/2" shells with #9 shot. I doubt he'd last a full 25 rounds for skeet.

He shot a friend of mine's .410 Side-by-Side Coach gun and loved it. I know a longer barrel is better for clay shooting of any kind but he likes that short 20" barreled Coach Gun.

I figure for as cheap as the gun is, he can try it out. Who knows, he may get good with it. I was very surprised how good he shoots a rifle at 50 and 100 yards.

I'll start him off by just throwing some clays for him by hand to let him get the feel of shooting a moving target and once he gets where he can hit most of what I throw for him, I'll move him to a real skeet range and let him try from there.

I know shooting clays with a .410 is not easy. I've tried it and rarely hit more than 10 to 12 clays out of 25. We'll see what happens. Maybe by the time he gets tired of this gun, he'll be big enough to handle a bigger gauge. Then he can just add this gun to his collection and I'll buy him a nice 20 or 12 with at least a 26" barrel.

I thought about a .410 semi-auto for him but they are all expensive except for the Saiga and I don't see him shooting clays with that. Many of the ranges down here in Florida are biased against any of what they call "black guns".

Joe
:)

Gary A
March 7, 2008, 03:28 PM
Lucky wrote: It is generally accepted that their steel-making techniques are antiquated, and thus result in a superior product to more modern and efficient methods.


I'm not quite sure what you're saying here. Are you saying that antiquated steel-making techniques produce a superior product? Are did you mean to type "less superior product to more modern and efficient methods"?

Is their steel better or worse?

The Wiry Irishman
March 7, 2008, 03:41 PM
A .410 is an expert's gun when it comes to shooting moving clay targets.
Yeah, I don't recommend them to people for just this reason. Probably better to start him off on a 20-gauge.

My dad started me shooting clays when I was 12 or 13 with a .410/.22 over/under, and I did just fine.

I'm glad he didn't start me on his 20 ga. Its a single shot break action that weighs almost nothing and hits harder than most 12ga guns I've shot. I just wasn't big enough to deal with it at the time.

BartSr
February 28, 2009, 02:50 AM
I just bought one tonight at Big-5 in Hillsboro Oregon.
After I got it home, I noticed that the forepiece would not lock in
to the barrels. Took the forepiece apart and filed down the rear of the notch,
and bingo it latches.

I noticed that the barrel states "Lead shot only".
Bummer, now I get to take back the steel-shot shells I got.

Paul

Edit: I'm not complaining, just very happy that I now have my first shotgun and it's the one that I wanted.
It's too bad their workmanship mised this small fine tuning. I'm sure that it'll go "bang" and make a big hole.

nalioth
February 28, 2009, 11:58 AM
Problem with Chinese guns is that they're not light, easily modified, or tactical. It is generally accepted that their steel-making techniques are antiquated, and thus result in a superior product to more modern and efficient methods. I'm not sure where you're going with this, either ( I suspect you have something against the Chinese).

The Norinco Kalalashnikovs aren't tactical?

The Norinco 982 isn't easily modified? (it's a chinese copy of the Remmy 870)

Last I looked, the steel quality used in their firearms is fine.

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