Enter the Benelli Nova. You cannot imagine my excitement last night while watching Top Shot when I realized if the TS4 team was implementing the Benelli M4 and the Vinci on the Team Challenge, then that must mean they would break out the Benelli Nova on the elimination challenge. And I was right! It was a creative idea too, forcing the competitors to establish a rhythm of SHOOT, PUMP, RELOAD all the while keeping the three headed target wheel rolling down the track on its rounded triangular sides. You’ll need to check the Mind Dump to see what I mean. Of course the Top Shot version of my nova was tac’d out to the max. It had an extended magazine tube, and raised ghost ring sights for more precise shooting applications.
Let’s see, I first received my Benelli Nova back in the summer of 2004 as a gift from my father. He had bought it for himself and hated it, not because it looks like an alien shotgun out of some sci-fi movie, but because he couldn’t hit a thing with it and just in general felt more comfortable with his Ithica Model 37 Featherweight (dang need to review that one too!). The ubiquitous pump shotgun has since been quail hunting in Western Oklahoma, skeet & trap shooting in Missouri, Nebraska and Colorado, as well as dove and goose hunting in Colorado and too many Missouri turkey hunts to count. My 26″ barreled Nova has seen countless gallons of water spilled over it, been jammed with red clay more times than I can remember and most recently covered in a talc style textured sand that infiltrated every pore and still has yet to yield a jam or a misfire or have a part or screw give way to rust. I’ve run 2.75″, 3″, and 3.5″ shells over and over and it chews them up and spits them out without a complaint. NEVER a complaint.
The Benelli Nova is inexpensive, hearty and consistently accurate with any type of shot. Expensive, cheap, buffered magnum loads, lead bird shot, buck shot, copper plated shot… EVERYTHING. I’ve never owned a shotgun (among probably 7 of my own in my young life) that has a modified choke tube that patterns like this. IN fact I’ll go out on a limb and say it’s the tightest modified cylinder I’ve ever shot.
I can say beyond the shadow of a doubt that if you’re looking for an all around sport pump shotgun, the Benelli Nova is perfect for you. Be aware though, it’s big. Benelli does have 20 gauge and youth size models that will be more appropriate for small framed shooters. My Nova is the most robust pump shotgun I’ve ever used. EVER, and that’s up there with Mossberg 500s, Remington 870s and Winchester 1200 Ranger models. By my last rough estimate count my Nova has had over 5,000 rounds of miscellaneous shells through it with a perfect track record and no sign of slowing down.
If I had to describe the Benelli Nova pump shotgun with one phrase that could convince you it would be this…
THE BENELLI NOVA IS THE GLOCK OF SHOTGUNS. PERIOD!
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