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Lindley

New Benelli M4 and my modifications and testing

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(*I apologize for the multiple posts, but the forum only allows posting 2 photos at a time?? Also, I didn't realize the resolution was too high... sorry about that as well.)

 

Hi Benelli gang-

 

This is my first real post here, but I do have to thank the board members for all of the great information I have gathered while lurking on here for quite some time. I always wanted a Benelli M4 and I finally got one. Below are a few pictures and some scant details about my modifications.

 

I wanted this rig for multiple purposes: hunting , home defense, and the occasional competition. I hunt hogs in the marshes and swamps of southern Louisiana and often get very up close and personal with them, particularly when we are in the tall marsh grass tunnels. For this, I thought a shotgun would be perfect. Why not a bad ass Benelli M4, right?!

 

_MG_30492014-04-102004-04-10_zps95578c79.jpg

 

At first, I tried an Aimpoint PRO, but that was too bulky and too high. I settled on an Aimpoint T1 on an American Defense Manufacturing (ADM) low mount (Model# AD-T1-L). I love it!

 

_MG_30382014-04-10_zpsa4c59bb2.jpg

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Then I added a Surefire Defender light in a Gear Sector mount. I ended up moving it to a lower position that you will see in photos far below. In this high position, the light was reflecting off of my front sight at night and obscuring my vision.

 

I also installed a Freedom Fighter Tactical titanium ½” charging handle. I have been less than satisfied and have had a few instances where it pulled out easily under use. That has been disappointing and I look forward to changing it out with something better. I am putting the stock one back in for now.

 

I also added a Surefire forend. It is 4 oz heavier than stock and a little larger than I would like, but it does allow me to clamp on the Surefire and also an occasional bipod. The verdict is still out, but I think I will keep it.

 

The drop at the comb on the extended Benelli OEM collapsible stock was a turn off. It does not allow for proper eye alignment when using optics or a red dot sight. So, that is why I decided to go with the ATI stock. It too is heavier than I would like, but it is robust as ****. I like the adjustable comb and integrated d-ring for sling attachment.

 

IMG_34552014-05-11_zps5e08e921.jpg

 

 

I have tested multiple types buckshot and I plan on a full report on that in a separate post in the future. Here’s a snapshot of a few types using the factory modified choke tube at 25 yards.

 

IMG_32742004-04-27_zps8633f8ed.jpg

Edited by Lindley

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I am a big fan of #4 buckshot. Here is the difference between the factory Benelli modified choke and a Carlson’s tactical choke that is wide open (more open than cylinder).

 

IMG_34532014-05-11_zps8596b3d1.jpg

 

IMG_34562014-05-11_zps02be7363.jpg

Edited by Lindley

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Bipod is overkill, but I use it when testing the buckshot rounds for consistency. I use a benchrest tripod and rear sandbag with a high-power scope when shooting groups with slugs.

 

IMG_34552014-05-11_zps5e08e921.jpg

 

 

After a SIX PLUS month wait, my titanium magazine tube from Carrier Comp arrived yesterday. I sneaked out to the garage with my wife’s hairdryer and got to work on the installation. It broke loose by hand when the receiver temperature reached about 200 degrees.

 

IMG_44212014-07-042014-07-04_zpsbc663ad2.jpg

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The spring is longer than the factory OEM (but you can’ t tell it in the packaging.) The machine work on the magazine tube is superb. The finish is perfect as well. It was worth the wait.

 

IMG_44222014-07-042014-07-04_zpse1e1346d.jpg

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And her she is in the most current state:

 

IMG_44232014-07-042014-07-04_zps82f2078a.jpg

 

IMG_44242014-07-042014-07-04_zpsa4f467f1.jpg

 

Lastly, here’s a quick video of me testing some 3” buckshot. GoPro cameras are tough!

 

 

Feel free to ask any questions. Thanks for looking!

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Nice lookin gun Lindley and funny video.. Honest errors occur sometimes and I thought it was a nice touch how you left it in there...;)

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Thanks, Sharkey.

 

After thinking about it some more, I decided the Surefire M80 forend is not for me. I am going back to the OEM, but only after the AVA Tactical mount for the Surefire P2X Fury Defender arrives. The AVA mount is expensive, but I think it will be worth it in order to lose a 1/4 pound of weight and rid myself of that huge bulky forend that really robs from the ergonomics of the M4.

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Joel's got a great design (AVA Tactical). If this is something you will consider, Bezel Diameter is something you will need to be aware of. He has Bezel Diameters listed that provide ample distance between the barrel and bezel. PM him with any questions. He will get back to you promptly. Great Guy!

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I think I’m done for now. I put the Surefire M80 up for sale on Ebay and installed the AVA with the factory forend. I like the original forend MUCH better the second time around. The Surefire was just too bulky and heavy.

_MG_653612014-07-10_zps02f89792.jpg

_MG_652812014-07-10_zpse154cb7c.jpg

Edited by Lindley

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_MG_653912014-07-10_zpsdd6adac4.jpg

I put electrical tape around the flashlight cap prior to installation, but I plan to add the snap ring to the back like some of the others have done to the Surefire Fury lights in the AVA mount.

_MG_652912014-07-10_zpsb70d3782.jpg

Edited by Lindley

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The only thing I can see myself doing now is adding a deflector to the bezel of the flashlight to keep light off of the front sight. The reflection / glare is a distraction at night while looking through the Aimpoint.

I also put electrical tape around the barrel and barrel band prior to mounting the AVA.

 

_MG_653112014-07-10_zps6a1e0077.jpg

_MG_654112014-07-10_zps584ea168.jpg

Edited by Lindley
broken link

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The front sight glare was not an issue with the Surefire M80 and Gear Sector mount (far above in post #6). I also didn't have much shadow from the barrel, like I do now with the AVA mount and light. These are downsides to the current AVA setup I have.

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Thanks for the write up. Impressive for sure. You'll love the AVA.. love mine... :)

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2699[/ATTACH]

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.....I use a benchrest tripod and rear sandbag with a high-power scope when shooting groups with slugs.

 

Ditching the T-1 and mounting the S&B short dot Gen 2 is a great option when the need you anticipate the need to send slugs down range accurately with the 14" and still have red dot CQB.

 

DSCN2155A_zpscb454cda.jpg

DSCN2141A_zpsabd60825.jpg

Edited by benelliwerkes

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Check the barrel shadow without the oversized choke/comp. Consider getting a P3X 1000 lumen light. The body is longer and the bezel will extend closer to the end of the barrel.

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Where did the QD cup above the pistol grip come from? I want one on mine to use with the AVA Mount

 

Thanks,

 

Larry

 

Ditching the T-1 and mounting the S&B short dot Gen 2 is a great option when the need you anticipate the need to send slugs down range accurately with the 14" and still have red dot CQB.

 

DSCN2155A_zpscb454cda.jpg

DSCN2141A_zpsabd60825.jpg

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Wasn't sure to post the response here or on the other related thread.

It's the 2 piece Mesa tactical screw from a year or so ago, before they had a specific M4 product....I have not used their current product.

 

Photos by Permission: Benelli Super 90 M4 Anatomy Series Firearm Manual

Screenshot2014-07-11at64940PM_zpseb0a40c0.png

Screenshot2014-07-11at70156PM_zps03fc194b.jpg

Edited by benelliwerkes

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Good thread. Nice writeup, good pics.

Not surprised you switched away from the surefire forend for the AVA tactical configuration.

 

Unrelated: I love that Werkes put a S&B short dot on the 14". That is next level. :)

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