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Benelli Vinci Cycling Issues

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I have owned my Vinci since 2012.  In that time I have shot trap with it every summer since I have owned it as well as carried it extensively while wing shooting every fall.  At this point, the gun has multiple thousands of rounds through it.  The one thing that has bugged me since owning the gun is it will not cycle 1 oz. loads reliably.  It is even slightly picky on which 1 1/8 oz. loads it will cycle. I have tried all stages of lubrication from basically dry to what I think is too much lubrication and the problem has still persisted.  I have never had any issues cycling field or waterfowl loads so I have been willing to live with it.  Today I was out shooting with some friends, one of which has a newer Vinci. I believe the gun was purchased in 2015.  He has always reported no cycling problems at all with his going as light as 7/8 oz. loads.  Today he ended up having to go to work early and left the gun with me overnight.  I took both guns apart and compared them side by side and noticed some differences on the guide rod for the recoil spring.  On my gun the guide rod is rough in texture.  There is also a cutout on the guide rod.  I noticed on his gun that the guide rod is completely smooth.  It also doesn't have a cutout.  I will attach some pictures along with this post.  Any info anyone could provide would be greatly appreciated.



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7 hours ago, Steve Rose said:

Does the newer Vinci have the "Speed Bolt" feature?

"The Speed Bolt system incorporates a special, high density tungsten insert to make cycling even faster and to give excellent performance even with low shot loads. "


Looking at the link, it does not have a speed bolt. Both guns are just plain vincis.  I should also point out that on my bolt the rough side is the flat side closest to the bolt.  As near as I can tell it looks to me like it may be the result of the molding process and not machining marks.  I really wish that my phone could focus well enough to show the rough texture.

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