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Franchi SPAS-12



Overview


SPAS-12

Forward view of a SPAS-12 shotgun with stock folded.
Source: www.deactivated-guns.co.uk - © copyright lies with original owner

Origin
Italy
Type
Shotgun
Entered service
1980
Status
In service
Development
1970's
Developer
Italy - Franchi
Production
1979 - 2000
Producer
Italy - Franchi
Unit cost
$ 1.500 in 2000
Number produced
About 37.000
Designations
Special Purpose Automatic Shotgun (original designation)
Sporting Purpose Automatic Shotgun (renamed in 1990)

Description


Introduction

The SPAS-12 is a shotgun of Italian origin. SPAS stands for Sporting Purpose Automatic Shotgun, although from the very start it was designed for law enforcement and military use. Due to the distinct look resulting from the large heat shield and folding stock it has become an iconic firearm. It was replaced in production by the magazine fed SPAS-15 shotgun.

Design

The SPAS-12 is a semi-automatic gas operated shotgun capable of pump-action operation as well. The pistol grip and pump-action slider are made of plastics with the rest of the weapon made out of metal. Normally a metal folding stock is fitted, with a wooden or plastic fixed stock as an alternative. A wide variety of muzzle attachments is available.

Firepower

The SPAS-12 fires 12 ga shells with a length of 2.75 inch. Semi-automatic fire is possible with full power shells. The pump-action mechanism is to be used for low powered non-lethal shells. The tubular magazine under the barrel may hold 8 shells, but loading 7 rounds increases reliability.

Users

The SPAS-12 was successful as a law enforcement shotgun. It was hardly adopted as a patrol shotgun, but was acquired by many special military and police units. The SPAS-12 was sold around the world, but mainly in Europe and the USA. In Europe and the USA it was also marketed as a civilian shotgun, but in most nations it was banned after a few years.

Variants


SPAS-12

Two SPAS-12 that differ in barrel length and type of shoulder stock.
Source: Joguwa86 - © public domain

The SPAS-12 is a pump-action combat shotgun and the basis for several variants. The original SPAS-12 is the most common of all variants. Various different barrel lengths were available, with the exception of the short barrel version these were mainly for civilian use. The short barrel version was nicknamed SPAS-12 Shorty in the USA.

Details


Facts SPAS-12 SPAS-12 Shorty
General
Origin
Italy
Type
Shotgun
Caliber
Caliber
12ga 2.75"
Feed system
8+1 round tubular magazine
Barrel length
546 mm
Rifling
Smoothbore
Operation
Action
Gas operated or pump-action
Fire selector
0 - 1
Rate of fire
Semi-automatic or pump-action
Dimensions
Stock type
Foldable
Optional fixed stock
Length
1.041 mm stock extended
805 mm stock folded
Weight
4.36 kg
Sights
Mechanical
Iron sights

Media