Stoeger’s M3500 has become a cult-classic waterfowl shotgun thanks to it’s Benelli-barrowed inertia system, a 3.5-inch chamber and superb reliability all for a budget price. Well, now the same gun is desirable for home defenders, thanks to the new Predator/Turkey Special buttstock that wears a pistol grip so shooters can control the gun easier with one hand. I like the full-size, no-nonsense buttstock that has enough drop at comb to align the eye along the top of the rib and enough space atop it for a good cheekweld that can reduce felt recoil.
In addition to the grip, the receiver is drilled and tapped for a scope mount that can add accuracy to slug shooting. Its 24-inch barrel provides full velocities, but remains easy to wield in tight confines.
But at its heart, the Stoeger is a much more expensive Benelli with its legendary ARMI inertia-driven system that self-regulates no matter the size of the shell fed to it, from 23/4, 3 and even the mighty 3.5-incher. The system uses the shell’s own recoil to move the gun rearward around the heavy bolt, thereby compressing a stout spring within the bolt. Then as the spring rebounds, it rotates the bolt head which unlocks it from the barrel extension and flings it backward, ejecting a shell before picking up another one off the carrier and returning to battery.