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SBE 1 & 2, M1, M2 & Montefeltro Cycling Issue's (NEW INFORMATION)


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I have seen many posts about jamming, cycling, rotating bolt problems etc. Let me start with a writing I previously posted and then some new finding that may help many Benelli owners.


Previously posted:

Benelli M1, SBE, and Montefeltro Recoil Spring & Maintained tips.



My experience with Benelli Autoloaders is quite extensive. I purchased one of the original Montefeltro’s imported by H&K and have worked on and performed year end maintenance on over 200 guns models listed above and the Nova.


I’m sure everyone knows how to “field strip” your gun, I will not cover this however I will add what may be of value from my experience. What most Benelli owners do not know about the gun they own is, the vital component listed as the recoil spring and the recoil spring tube. This will be the focus of this writing because it is not covered in the Benelli owner’s manual. With the knowledge and understanding of this maintenance and process, the problems experienced in cycling issues could be completely eliminated. It is vital that your recoil spring maintenance be performed on a yearly basis, the exceptions would be low usage or submerged gun.


Removing the Butt Plate requires a thin shaft Philips screwdriver with a number #2 head. Apply oil to the Butt Plate screw holes before inserting the screw driver. This will minimize the damage to the rubber. Remove Butt Plate. Insert a 13mm deep socket in the back of the stock and remove the stock retaining nut, this nut will need to be torque to 22 lbs upon assembly. The stock assembly and drop change shim will come off. To remove the recoil spring, the stock retaining nut SCREW will need to be removed from the recoil spring tube. This will require a 17mm closed end wrench. Older Benelli’s will not have the nut attached to the stock retaining screw; this will make the process more difficult. To remove the stock retaining nut screw, my experience has been in most circumstances heat will be required to address the locktite which has been applied to the screw from the factory. Place the receiver assembly in a vise just tight enough to hold the receiver be careful not to crush receiver. Protect the receiver to eliminate damage. Heat the stock retaining nut screw near the recoil spring tube with a Bic type lighter for up to one minute. This is all I ever needed to slacken the locktite. Then place your closed end wrench on the nut and loosen. Care must be taken when removing the screw the assembly is under pressure of the recoil spring. The recoil spring ready to be removed and the recoil spring plunger. Upon assembly do not use locktite, this processed should be performed annually anyway.

Concluding, the recoil tube should be cleaned with gun scrub and a 20 gauge wire brush inserted through the tube. The recoil spring should be cleaned as well. My experience with the factory recoil spring has been less than desired. I have replaced factory springs after one year on M1’s model number 11045 serial numbers M400240 and M400239. The original Montefeltro springs seemed better, lasting 10 years. I replace the recoil spring with Wolff 25% extra power spring. Keep in mind these are hunting guns and do not shoot low base 7/8 0z shells. Wolff 25% reduced power spring works well for light loads. You will know when your spring needs to be replaced when the bolt assembly does not rotate to the closed position after shooting the first shell, when your gun is properly maintained. This failure increases when shooting in cold weather and shooting directly overhead, when the bolt faces the force of gravity. Assembly of the recoil spring requires minimal usage of synthetic spray lube, just enough to lubricate and protect metal. Excessive oil will collect more powder residue. Synthetic will minimize congeal at low temps.

When reassembling the gun it would be helpful to install your trigger assembly, this will make the alignment of the stock easier. The bolt assembly should be kept clean. I use a few drops of Break Free inside of the receiver assembly on the bolt rails, this should be all the lubricant you will need after cleaning the assembly with gun scrub. A “dry” clean magazine assembly, dry meaning no lubricant, will create the same symptom of the bolt assembly not rotating closed in cold weather as well. This cost me a double on Canada Geese this year because I was to lazy to field strip my Benelli and lube it properly when encountering cold weather. The field striping and lubricating noted above can be performed in a few minutes after a few repetitions.


I am hopeful this summary may be helpful. Performing complete and well timed maintenance will go a long way towards keeping your Benelli in great operating condition. Nothing is worse than a semi autoloading shotgun that becomes a single shot. I wish I would have had this information when I purchased my first Benelli.


New Findings:


After completing cleaning and spring replacement I experienced Benelli owners indicate they are having cycling problems. I tell them to return the gun and the exact shells they are shooting thru the gun. My findings are very consistant. 1. Owners are shooting 7/8 oz shot in their Benelli's with new Wolff 25% increase recoil springs installed or their shells are swelled. I install Wolff 25% increase recoil spring in all hunting guns. Remember this spring will not shoot 7/8 oz. shells particularily when the temperature drops. 2. The big discovery has been shells that are swelled or slightly out of tolerance. I have found no brands better than others. Shells swell if they sit in a wet shell belt for any amount of time. Some shells are simply fatter than others. Here is a test everyone can do. Remove you barrel from the reciever. Point the muzzle towards the ground. Drop a shell into the barrel. The shells should fall all the way to the end of the brass. Then turn the barrel upside down. The shell should freely fall out of the barrel. All of the guns returned with cycling problems fire problem free with proper diameter shells down to minus 20 degrees. Remember the colder the temperature the greater cycling problems occur.


Here is what you can do, check all of your shells if you are experiencing cycling issue's after the above described maintainence. If your shells are to fat and don't fall into the barrel as described above, sand them slightly until they do or send them to me, i'll take em'. When purchasing new shells take your barrel with and check which brands fall into the barrel the best.


I hope this will help everyone. I am noting more swelled shell issue's in the past two years.


Let me know if I can help.

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This is superb info. The M1's in particular respond very well to even just a little love, but I can attest-- we Benelli M1 owners have got to access that recoil tube and spring and do as the Man remarkable says; it'll help keep your gun working hard for thousands of rounds-- which mine has experienced-- I have had tremendous luck with my M1 Super 90 after working it hard for 12 seasons, letting it get beat up in duck boats, muddy fields, ice, you name it. Thanks again, remarkable! Bill

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Excellent info from someone who is obviously well informed!!!


I have been doing all of the above for about 18 seasons now with no real problems. I also do this type of stuff on my Browning Golds/Silvers and most of my other mechanical possessions.


mudhen - CA

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Guest GunCrazyD

no one should be shooting 7/8th ounce shells reguardless.. 1 1/8th ounce 3 dram loads are minimum the guns will cycyle..AFTER break in period of heavier rounds....but yeah cleaning and oiling the recoil tubs is the key to keeping the gun running properly...

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