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I bought a new SBE 12 gauge about 20 years ago. I had been using a Remington 11-87 3" Magnum. I suddenly couldn't hit anything. A few years ago I gave up and put my Benelli in the closet. A friend last year suggested I pattern the Benelli. I did and discovered it was shooting about 8-12 inches high and 4-6 inches to the left at 40 yards (3 1/2 inch 2 shot Federal Steel). I'm looking for instructions on what shims to use to correct this problem? I don't understand the geometry (does dropping the stock drop the POI?). Thank you. Tom
This is a recurring question. Part of the confusion comes from the fact that the Benelli manual doesn't do a good enough job of explaining how drop at heel correlates to POI (point of impact). Firstly, you have to understand how shotgun sighting works. There is no fixed rear sight on a shotgun. The shooter's eye works as the rear sight. Changing the eye position is the equivalent of moving the rear sight on a rifle. This is why it's important to consistently use the same stock position and cheek weld when shooting a shotgun. Raising the head off the stock raises the rear sight. That means that the POI will go up. Moving the head left means the POI goes further left. In this graphic, I have combined the Benelli drop change chart with a very good explanation of drop at heel relates to POI. The full discussion can viewed here http://www.trapshooters.com/cfpages/thread.cfm?Threadid=246131&ShowDeleted=Yes&SortBy=ASC One can go beyond the stock settings with a raised comb (higher POI) or longer/shorter recoil pad. With regards to Right and Left adjustment, you only have two choices with the Benelli, unless you have a custom locking plate made for you. The SX plate, which provides a "cast-on" condition, meaning that the stock is moved slightly left to allow for the shooter's cheek thickness (offset from center) and attempts to center the eye over the receiver for left-handed shooters. The DX plate provides the opposite condition for right-handed shooters. So, what can you do at this point? Well, the first thing you should do is to make sure that you are using proper form. The only way to do that is to have a knowledgeable shooter or gunsmith evaluate your shooting form and offer pointers accordingly. If you think you have proper form, and you just want to get the gun shooting where you aim, then you'll need to customize the shotgun beyond the capacity of the stock shims and plates. As mentioned previously, a higher comb could help you with raising the POI. You could also benefit from the optional thicker recoil pad. That would push your cheek further back on the stock and elevate your eye, raising POI. If you want more cast-on or cast-off, which would move the POI right or left, then you could take one of those plates to a machinist and explain that you need more offset than the stock plate allows. He could fill the existing hole and drill a new one further from center. Be careful with how far you go. You are probably real close and a 1/4" may be all you need.