Test: Pedersoli 1886/71 Premium lever action gun

The Italian company Pedersoli drew on a large collection of historical originals to build detailed replicas of the Winchester 1886 / model 71. Currently, however, the Classic and Premium models of Pedersoli’s 86/71 are only available in the punchy caliber .45-70. The Boarbuster, marketed in in the States under the name Hogzilla Killa, is also on sale in a caliber .444 Marlin model in Germany. The company is already hatching plans to manufacture the weapon in its original .348 Winchester caliber in the not too distant future.

Pedersoli 1886/71 lever action gun – The models

Phil Spangenberger
Pedersoli 1886/71 lever action gun: VISIER author Phil Spangenberger takes a gander at the model 71 with extended magazine at the SHOT Show in Las Vegas. On his right at the Pedersoli stand is the German muzzleloader marksman Lothar Behrendt.

This article focuses primarily on Pedersoli’s Premium model, but the model 71 replica is actually available in a total of three different model series.

Pedersoli equipped all three of the series with a thick rubber butt cap and screwed-in swing swivel studs. The basic model of the gun comes with a burnished and polished receiver, and the 61 cm barrel has the same finish, complemented by a checkered walnut stock and pistol grip.

The half-length mag tube takes five cartridges. The Boarbuster model has a 48.5 cm barrel, an American walnut stock, fiberglass sights and a mounting rail. Last in line is the Premium model. As mentioned earlier, the Boarbuster is available in.444 Marlin or .45-70 Government calibers and is priced at €1,562.00. The other guns retail at €1562.00 for the Classic model and €1,598.00 for the premium model.


Pedersoli 1886/71 Premium lever action gun in .45-70 Government

Color case-hardened pistol grip cap
Davide Pedersoli has also fitted a color case-hardened cap to the pistol grip of the 1886/71 lever action gun in the Premium model.

Several parts of the gun – including the receiver and the butt cap on the pistol grip – are delightfully color case-hardened. The beautifully grained stock made of American walnut has an intricately checkered pattern worked into the pistol grip.

The barrel length and magazine capacity are identical to Pedersoli’s classic 1886/71 model, while the weapon’s fit and finish are absolutely deserving of the model name “Premium”.

It goes without saying that even the most beautifully designed gun does not make anyone a good shooter. But this lever action gun works as smoothly and shoots as pleasantly as it looks.

Feed and ejection of the cartridges and the cases were entirely trouble-free, even during fast operation of the lever, i.e. while cycling. The Premium’s trigger released at just over 2 kilograms of pull, and the thick rubber butt cap was a friend indeed when shooting, absorbing a hefty whack of the recoil even when firing more powerful loads.

Barrel of the Pedersoli 1886/71 lever action gun
An adjustable buckhorn rear sight is perched on the barrel of the Pedersoli 1886/71. The bolt protrudes out the back of the color case-hardened receiver when the lever is pulled down.


Pedersoli 1886/71 lever action gun – In the field

Chambering the lever action gun
Michael Cooper shows here how to chamber the Pedersoli 1886/71 Premium lever action gun through the loading slot on the right side of the receiver.
Checkering on the fore-stock 
A firm and safe grip on the Pedersoli 1886/71 lever action gun: the finely notched checkering on the fore-stock prevents any slipping – and shows beautiful craftsmanship for good measure.

Keen to sate his passion for open sight shooting, VISIER tester Spangenberger took the chance to put the 1886/71 through its paces during a safari in Africa. He used the rifle in the Namibian bush to bring down an Oryx antelope with horns just under one meter. The easy weight of the 1886/71 allowed the gun to be carried comfortably for several days across the thorny savannah.

The lever action gun delivered good group sizes. Adjusted using the ramp, the buckhorn sights allowed quick target acquisition, even with the shooter’s older eyes. Interestingly, the repeater is equipped to hold an optional diopter scope, while a telescopic sight can be fitted to the barrel. The group sizes of shots taken from a seated position at 100 yards (91.44 meters) were up to 12.7 cm, whereby most of the hits ranged between 8.9 and 10.2 cm.

The lever action gun coped with all loads without any hitches. Overall, it is important to note that good group sizes were achieved with all of the tested loads.

Group size for the Pedersoli 1886/71 lever action gun
The photo shows a five-shot group at 100 yards (91.44 meters) using 405 grain Black Hills. The group size for the Pedersoli 1886/71 lever action gun is 79 mm.


Pedersoli 1886/71 lever action gun – Our summary

The Davide Pedersoli 1886/71 Premium revealed itself as a beautifully finished lever action gun during our test. The compact rifle is easy to handle and well balanced. As stated earlier, the fit and finish are produced in a high quality. This is a weapon that will delight aficionados of the replica’s classic role model, while also catching the eye in sections of the hunting community. Western shooters will be particularly interested in the lever action gun.

Unfortunately, there is currently only one factory-made “hog load” cartridge that would be suitable for hunting — the 325 grain Hornady Lever Evolution FTX. But friends of hand loading are bound to find what they’re looking for among the numerous cartridges available in the 300 grain category.


You will find other products by the Italian manufacturer here at all4hunters.de in the Davide Pedersoli Catalog.

Click here to go directly to the Davide Pedersoli & C website.

Click here for the thorough test of the Pedersoli Boarbuster at all4hunters.com.

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Davide Pedersoli lever action model 1886/71 Premium
Technical data

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Manufacturer
Davide Pedersoli & C.
ModelLever Action Model 1886/71 Premium
TypeRepeater
Caliber.45-70 Government
SystemLever action gun
Capacity5 + 1 cartridges
Barrel
Barrel length 610 mm (rifling 460 mm)
Total length
1.080 mm
Trigger pull
2.150 g
Total weight
3.700 g
Material / surface finishVarious parts color case-hardened, walnut stock with checkering on the hand guard and pistol grip, sling swivel studs
Comments
In this model: folding buckhorn rear sight, front bead sight with tunnel