Traditionally, a 12-gauge shotgun provided police officers with more firepower when entering a dangerous situation. Even with the popularity of patrol rifles, shotguns still have an important place in the hands of law enforcement professionals.
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With their ability to handle a broad range of loadings, as well as the not-insignificant intimidation factor of the gaping maw of a 12-gauge muzzle, they have an important role to play in the hands of LE officers. Here are six great choices, in alphabetical order, for the modern street cop.
Beretta 1301 Tactical 12 Ga.
By Robert Jordan
The 1301 Tactical has a short 18-inch barrel, a fixed choke and ghost ring sights. I looked closely and found a few improvements from the old TX4. The 1301 Tactical has aggressive stippling in the stock and forend to help with handling under stress, when your hands are sweaty, bloody or the gun gets wet. The oversized safety is also larger on the new 1301. The ghost-ring iron sights sit slightly lower on the 1301 than the TX4, which makes it much easier to get a good cheekweld. Best of all, a large, tactical charging handle and a large, paddle bolt release come standard, right from the factory. On my old TX4, I had to buy these as aftermarket parts. Getting them standard saves about $100.
The 1301 Tactical has a fixed choke that is bored out to 0.73 inches (or “cylinder”). This is very important on any tactical shotgun. If you put any choke more restrictive than cylinder, you risk splitting the barrel when slugs are shot out of it. Also, tactical shooters are not in the habit of changing or checking their chokes. I have seen more than one barrel ruined when a choke got loose and eventually fell out without the shooter ever knowing. The accuracy dropped off and the internal choke threads were ruined before the shooter realized what had happened.
At the heart of the gun is the Blink operating system. First introduced on Beretta’s A400 Xtreme, Beretta says it is 36 percent faster than any other shotgun operating system. It has a rotating bolt, similar to an AR rifle and many Benelli shotguns. I already knew the Blink system was utterly reliable from running it on personally owned shotguns, but I had never checked its speed. I couldn’t wait to put it up against the shot timer. But first, I wanted to check its performance capabilities.
To learn more, please check out “Beretta 1301 Tactical 12 Gauge Shotgun | Gun Preview” on Tactical-Life.com.
For more information, please visit Beretta.com.
FN SLP Tactical 12 Ga.
By Rob Garrett
The SLP is a modern self-loading shotgun that is specifically designed for law enforcement/military use. FN has also made the SLP a modular shotgun that can be configured to both the user and the mission requirements. This modularity starts with a synthetic pistol-grip stock that features interchangeable recoil pads that allow the length of pull to be configured to an individual user. Interchangeable cheek combs allow the height to be configured depending on the user’s requirements. This feature is significant when an optical sight is used or the user is shooting while wearing a protective mask.
The SLP Tactical has the traditional 18-inch barrel that is common to most non-NFA police shotguns. The barrel features a hard-chromed bore with Invector interchangeable chokes. This is a feature not commonly found on law enforcement models. The system allows the user to optimize the SLP for a specific load and/or environment. The SLP Tactical shotgun is equipped with an extended, six-round magazine tube that features three Picatinny accessory rail sections.
For more information, please visit FNherstal.com.