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GUNS Magazine November 2011 Digital Edition - Page 56
m John Barsness any humans are fascinated with relatively small devices that do a superlative job. The world doesn’t exactly overflow with such perfection, but a list would certainly include the Piper super Cub airplane, 6.5x54 mannlicher-schoenauer carbine, 4-wheel-drive Toyota Tacoma (before it morphed into a medium-sized pickup), 3x leupold riflescope and the 28-gauge shotshell. Unfortunately, most 28-gauge shotguns don’t match the perfection of the cartridge. Too often they’re actually designed for larger shotshells, in particular the 20-gauge. A century ago the 20-gauge came in light little shotguns, such as the original Model 12 Winchester, perfect for carrying across the uplands, but in the middle of the 20th century Winchester stretched the 20-gauge case to 3" to make it more “versatile.” Since then 20-gauge guns have grown heavier, so they won’t kick the snot out of the people who shoot them. All too often manufacturers decide to stick 28-gauge barrels on the same guns. After all, the 20 and 28 are both “sub- gauges,” right? Well, no. So far nobody has tried to turn the 28 into a 12-gauge, a miracle that might rank alongside the return of the 3X Leupold. The result is a bunch of 28-gauge shotguns that weigh more than they should — and usually, more than advertised. I know this because of a personal affinity for the 28-gauge. If some company advertises a 28 as weighing X pounds, you can bet even money it will weigh half a pound more and end up with more bucks in your wallet. Luckily, there are exceptions. One recent example is the Fausti DEA SL, a side-by-side 28-gauge built to be a 28 from the very beginning. It’s advertised as weighing 5.4 pounds, The FausTi 28-gauge Dea sL shoTgun. The little gun looks at home on the range. 56 WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM • NOVEMBER 2011