We took it as a good omen when the first living thing we saw at the shotgun range was a horned lizard yesterday morning. In Texas, the old expression goes, “everything bites, stings or scratches” so we were glad to see something that looked ferocious but wasn’t out to do anything other than get away from us.
The horned lizard (Phrynosoma cornutum) may be endangered, but it’s also quite an engaging little critter. The one we found on the shotgun range yesterday proved tolerant, if not enthusiastic about being included in a variety of selfies.
Horned lizards notwithstanding, we were in Texas for the purpose of putting Remington’s Versa-Max and Versa-Max V3 shotguns through a little field testing- as in dove fields. First, however, we needed an extended range session to try out the right out of the box 12 gauges.
Remington's Versa-Max shotguns being prepped before their initial visit to the clay range.
Range testing shotguns (writer testing) is generally a two part exercise. First, stuff the shotgun as full of shells as possible (for semi-autos).
Then, empty said magazine as slowly as possible on clay targets.
Lather. Rinse. Repeat. Until the shotgun becomes to hot to hold or shells and targets are exhausted, testing is concluded.
Remington's Jessica Kallam (above) puts a Vera-Max through its paces while Kat Ainsworth (below) runs the Tac14 pump.
If you’re in the company of writers, you shouldn’t be surprised when one of the more “unusual” models shows up at shooting line. In this instance, one of Remington’s Tac14 models. Not many clays were broken with it, but the efforts prove- once again- that the short models are capable of more than personal defense.
Having not spent a lot of time with the Versa-Max, I was pleasantly surprised with the VersaPort system, and how it appears to minimize recoil as well as enable quick switches between various size shells (2 3/4, 3 and 3 1/2 inches are gobbled up with no problem.)
For me, the Versa-Max worked great, running more than 125 shells in pretty short order with no problem.
But the point of testing these guns is to get out into the Texas grain fields and do a little field testing on doves.
Tomorrow, I’ll let you know how that goes.