The M3K is a competition-ready, semi-auto shotgun from Stoeger Industries, part of the Benelli US family of companies in Maryland. Stoeger has a long history of manufacturing shotguns and other arms, and their name has become synonymous with high-quality firearms at affordable prices. The M3K, a development of their M3000 shotgun series, is a robust piece specifically catering for 3-Gun competition sport-shooters.
Our test model, chambered for 76mm (3'') 12ga cart-ridges, is 1162.05mm long and weighs 3.3kg. The polymer stock is straight and sans cheek-piece (hence ambidextrous) with a soft rubber recoil-pad to tame the recoil in rapid-fire. While hollow to facilitate installation of a Stoeger recoil reducer (an optional extra), the stock feels sturdy and dur-able and does not flex. The pistol-grip is chequered for a secure hold, even with a sweaty hand. The lightweight aluminium-alloy receiver is drilled and tapped for a tactical rail or sights and coated with a durable matte-black finish similar to that on the barrel. Its right side bears the Stoeger logo and model; the left, ‘Stoeger-Turkey’ indicating the country of manufacture. The alloy trigger sits well back in a generous polymer trigger-guard designed for gloved use. Trigger release weight measured 6lbs.
The enlarged, cross-bolt type safety-catch, directly behind the trigger, is easy to locate and operate. Just ahead of the trigger-guard is the cartridge drop lever, within easy reach of the trigger-finger, projecting visibly when the striker is cocked and the gun ready to fire.
The bevelled loading port permits fast loading during a match, and the elongated, enlarged lifter ensures speed-loading with two to three shells at a time. The enlarged metallic blue cocking handle provides a sure purchase when under pressure; likewise the enlarged bolt release button.
The 24-inch barrel has a high-ventilated rib with a clearly visible red fibre-optic bead (26-inch barrels are also available in SA).
Read the full article in the July issue of Magnum.