The name of the Chiappa Firearms company is no stranger to shooters worldwide, especially to all4shooters.com readers. It's no secret that we admire how dynamic a small replica manufacturer from a northern-Italian town (Azzano Mella, in the Brescia province) could become, imposing a modern twist on their entire product line in the turn of a few years and opening an U.S. branch in Dayton, Ohio, not to mention forging alliances with some important international firms − GIRSAN and AKKAR in Turkey, to name two − to provide high-quality parts. And this new line of products, available solely in the United States for now, sure is part of Chiappa's successful trend in innovation.
Considered by many a quintessentially American design − and, by several experts, the best and most powerful weapon platform a civilian shooter may rely upon in times of trouble − the pump-action shotgun is a worldwide favorite between private security personnel, Police officers, military operators, and private citizens seeking a reliable, versatile tool to protect themselves, their loved ones, their houses and their belongings. Almost immune to jammings andcapable of shooting any kind of shotshell − even the low-power or less-than-lethal loads that would jam most semi-autos − reliable and easy to operate, pump-action shotguns have also been manufactured by several European gunmakers all through the past fifty or sixty years, with Italian brands actually offering some of the most notorious models to have ever been marketed worldwide ever since the early 1980s. Chiappa is just the latest Italian manufacturer to offer not one, but four pump-action shotguns, all coming with 12-gauge, 3" ("Magnum") chambers, aimed to please both civilians and security professionals.
All of the new Chiappa's shotguns are entirely made out of stainless steel, with high-impact polymer being used for the furniture (pistol grips, handguards, stocks). The variants are named after their ammunition capacity, with two C6-12 models featuring a five-shots magazine and the possibility to load an additional shotshell in chamber, and two C9-12 models with an eight-shot tube plus one in the chamber. All variants are available in all-black, inox or parkerized finishes, and all feature a magazine disconnector and a manual safety. Other differences include overall lenght, barrel lenght and furniture. As an example, the pistol-grip only C6-12 comes with a 18.5" barrel and a pistol grip, and is 21-inch long overall, weighting 6 lbs and featuring a standard fixed front post sight; its "Tactical" variant is instead 37-inches long and 7 pounds heavy, as it comes with a pistol grip and a four-position sliding buttstock.
The baseline, pistol-grip C9-12 is 34.5" long due to its 22-inch barrel, and is 6.5 pounds heavy. The 42" long, 7.5lbs. heavy C9-12 "Tactical" comes with a pistol grip, a fixed tactical stock with sling attachment, Ghost Ring sights, a top Picatinny rail for additional aiming devices and a vented, serrated flash hider that will allow operators to use it to breach doors while preventing overpressure from damaging the barrel. All C6-12 and C9-12 shotguns are however drilled and tapered for Ghost Ring sights and MIL-STD-1913 "Picatinny" rails, and all come with an integral RemChoke installed to the barrel. Other accessories, offered by the Chiappa Firearms Ltd. company as after-market add-ons, include all sorts of polymer furniture − which is interchangeable from model to model − slings and cleaning kits, polymer and aluminium snap caps, breacher tubes, choke tubes, non-railed and railed magazine extensions. As of today, the C6-12 and C9-12 are U.S. market products only; price and availability are not fixed, and may vary due to the high levels of demand, and general turmoil, that the north American market has now been experiencing for several months. Chiappa Firearms and their exclusive distributor for the United States, MKS Supply Inc. out of Dayton (Ohio), will be glad to answer al inquiries by American shooters and perspective buyers.