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Akkid17

Versamax rebuild or retire?

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I’ve been on the fence for about 6 months now about getting a new shotgun or doing a complete overhaul of my pride and joy versamax. It’s been great for the last 4 years but it’s developed a nasty habit of not feeding a round at very inoperative times.

 

What happens is the gun ejects an empty hull and locks open with shells in the tube and to clear it or get it running again I have to reach into the ejection port and push the round in a little and then I will kick it into the lifter and load a round.

 

My guess is that I need to do a full overhaul on this gun since the springs are probably getting worn and the hammer is also looking a little rough. 

 

The dilemma however, is that I have a strong desire to pick up something new and try it (probably a M2 or B12). I have run a handful of other shotguns and have yet to find anything that I like near as much as the versamax; easiest loading, best recoil impulse, super smooth operation. 

 

On a a side note if I were to revamp the versa I’d probably have to get a rear sight of some sort since it’s natural impact point for slugs is damn near impossible to account for on the clock. 

 

Thoughts?

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3 hours ago, Akkid17 said:

 I have a strong desire to pick up something new and try it (probably a M2 or B12).

 

I have run a handful of other shotguns and have yet to find anything that I like near as much as the Versamax

 

 

If I loved the Versamax, I wouldn't buy anything else unless I tried it and LOVED it MORE than I love the Versamax.

 

Any way you can try an M2 or B12 before you buy ?

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I’ve shot an accurate iron m2 and someone else at the club I shoot at has a b12 that I could probably get to play with a little bit.

 

The main reason to possibly make the move (aside from just wanting something new) is the quality of the parts compared to the Remington, I’ve seen plenty of examples besides my own person experience of parts wearing out pretty quickly 

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When we got into 3 gun my wife went through 3 shotguns before settling on her Versamax.  It started malfunctioning after about 6000 rounds and it was recommended that I should be switching out all of the springs every year.  Since then it has been very reliable.  I order a full set from Brownells and file off any burs and clean up the internals that I don't replace every 5000 rounds.  This year she started having problems only a 1000 rounds after a tune up.  The shells have actually worn at  groove into the side of the receiver and starting to cause the lifter to hang up because the lifter is having to push the shell up out of the groove.  I have tried to smooth out the groove with a drummel and it is working but the reliability my not be perfect so I think this one might get retired.  

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What shells are you running? I have seen this in a buddy's M2. Actually wore a groove in the receiver. He shoots a lot. Uses brass washed steel Federal shells, thinking it is the steel wearing out the aluminum receiver. My son runs only AA brass shells in his M2 and you see a small line but no ridge. Polishes right out. Just a thought.

 

gerritm

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Because the Versa max runs everything, 90% of the shells we run through it are the steel ones.  

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Our 2-Benelli M-2's will also run anything, but we have found the consistency of the AA hulls especially here in the heat of Texas are worth the extra few bucks. Plus after seeing the comparable wear pattern in the aluminum receiver in my buddies M2 with as many rounds as they shoot is a plus. 

 

gerritm

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Looking at a new shotgun myself. Is the Versa still a good option for the money or am I better with something else. 

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13 hours ago, Akkid17 said:

The problem has persisted with a new mag spring with close to a foot of spring past the end of the tube

From my personal experience I've only have 100 percent feeding with at least 14 inches hanging out, maybe that would help?

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Don't use steel hulls is the 1st lesson learned...

 

2nd lesson, how could you have gotten by for 4 years without a rear sight for slugs in the 3gun game???

 

Sound like a tune up is in order, but if ya wanna buy another shotgun, whos to say no???  :)

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4 hours ago, RiggerJJ said:

2nd lesson, how could you have gotten by for 4 years without a rear sight for slugs in the 3gun game???

I still haven’t gotten a  rear sight and it kills me on slugs, we just don’t have enough decent 3 gun around here anymore to justify getting a rear sight milled I any of my guns. Plus I found someone willing to trade an accurate iron m2 for my open  shotgun so now I’ll have even more of a struggle about working on the versamax. I’ll probably wind up getting all new springs and then keeping it as a back up if I like the m2. 

 

And I pretty much run Remington game club or Winchester xtra-lite and fiocchi 1oz slugs, good mix of rem sts and win AA’s as well but my other shotgun (1301 comp) runs everything like a champ so I have a hard time believing the hype that you have to buy premium shells to get your gun to run. 

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Akkid17:  I've suddenly have the same problem you are experiencing a couple days ago.  The gun ran great up into after I did a thorough cleaning.  I was doing some loading practice and the shell in the magazine tube would hang up on the feed latch after it was released.  I had to cock the shell over so it could clear the latch.  Found it rather odd why it was doing this.  I started diagnosing the springs and they had plenty of tension.  The problem centered on the feed latch.  I started doing a little trimming on the area where the base contacts.  It seemed to solve the problem,  but every so often a shell would still stick.  I then bent the feed latch just enough so it would clear.  But then it would not catch the following shell and ended up with 2 on the carrier.  Its kind of a delicate balancing act.  It's still not perfect yet.  I'm really being careful not to trim too much.  I'll probably end up buying a new latch in case I screw this one up.  I too,  like the Versamax for the same reasons you do and have no desire to purchase anything else. 

 

 

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On 12/11/2018 at 10:01 PM, Akkid17 said:

The problem has persisted with a new mag spring with close to a foot of spring past the end of the tube

 

15" is what I use. Stuff an un-cut spring on there and see if it solves the problem. Springs are cheaper than new guns.

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I would trade it in on a M2 or 1301 (if you want a gas gun) and never look back.  I have never heard of anyone regretting that move.

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I'd definitely go for the Accurate Iron M2.

That's what I've been using for the past 5 years and I honestly don't know how to clear a malfunction in it because it's never happened. 

Mike isn't building them anymore so if you have a lead on one, get it. 

 

Remington isn't what they used to be. I'll never get another Remington after going through three 870's that were pure junk. 

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