Doves fly furiously against an azure
slab of Patagonian sky like bees from a hive hit by a baseball.
A hunter steps among brightlycolored shells that cover the field
like a plastic quilt as his gun slices the air like a maestro's
baton. Cartridges are slammed into the chamber with the delicacy
of a jackhammer and then fired in numbers that outpace the mind's
capacity to count.
Welcome to Argentina's wing shooting,
where demands on the sportsman are equaled only by the stress on
Although preferred because of reduced
recoil, autoloaders can be susceptible to several problems resulting
from the ravages of thousands of rounds of inferior ammunition.
High-volume shooting of such rounds causes the build up of powder
residue, which can lead to malfunctions.
Another problem with lesser quality
ammunition is that the cartridge may not ignite quickly or the powder
may not burn completely. Gas guns work on a precise timing sequence;
any slight deficiency can lead to flawed operation and sustaining
such abuse can lead to gun damage.
Beretta has built a new series of
autoloading guns, the Teknys, that overcomes the negatives that
plague most autoloaders during high-volume Argentinean wing shooting.
The Teknys also is designed to set the highest standards for performance
The foundation of the Teknys is the gas
operation system of the 391 Urika that features a unique gas cylinder
and a self cleaning piston with an exhaust valve that
automatically expels the excess gas of the most powerful cartridges.
This ensures the capability of shooting, without any adjustment,
loads from light 3/4 ounce to the most powerful 3 inch loads.
The exhaust valve assembly remains
attached to the gas cylinder, allowing easy and quick disassembly
The Teknys boasts a jeweled bolt
and a streamlined deep-relief satin nickel receiver that is virtually
impervious to scratching, wear and rust plus facilitates quick shouldering
and target acquisition.
An enamel inlay-green or blue, depending
on the model-flows from the rear of the receiver to the top section
of the pistol grip. Unaffected by age or temperature, the patented
elastic Gel-Tek Recoil pad offers a polymer shell and a non-toxic
inert silicone gel core that reduces felt recoil by distributing
it over the entire pad surface.
The stock is X-TRA Wood, a beautifully
upgraded piece of semi-gloss walnut. It is specially treated for
dramatically increased weatherproofing and scratch resistance, far
surpassing the protective qualities of traditional varnish finishes.
The Teknys comes with five color-coded
extended 'Victory' Mobilchoke tubes made of anti-corrosion steel
that can handle both lead and steel shot. Conveniently, these chokes
are interchangeable with other Beretta automatic, S x S and 0/U
The trigger plate is made of high
strength fiberglass-reinforced technopolymer that has self-cleaning
properties, high absorption of recoil
vibrations and, with a low coefficient of heat, is more comfortable
to the touch in cold weather. The large opening of the trigger
guard facilitates comfortable and safe use of gloves.
The 12 gauge model offers an 8
1/2 ounce recoil reducing device that can be inserted into the
stock. The 12 and 20 gauge models are available with 28 or 30
inch barrels and removable graphite ribs. The last refinement
I will mention is that the barrel is fitted with a TRUGLO ®
front sight luminous insert.
Overall, the Teknys is a supremely
elegant and functional shotgun that can flawlessly handle the
most severe hunting conditions. It is user-friendly as far as
maintenance, merits the highest confidence for reliability and
provides the recoil reducing feature not found in other gun platforms
without any compromise in performance.
The Urika 391 has already become
the gun of choice among many wing shooters in Argentina and the
Teknys will surely add to the Urika's prominence.
As I plan my trip to Cordoba and
Patagonia this spring, finding the ideal gun has been both a necessity
and a delightful journey. After shooting cases of shells on the
skeet and sporting clays fields with the new 20 gauge Teknys,
becoming educated about its construction and comparing it with
other candidates, I'm confident I've found the gun for my adventure.
By Michael Sabbeth
The Double Gun Journal