Back when I first got into doubles, I visited a shop called New England Arms in Kittery Point, ME. At the time, New England Arms was the best gunshop in the world, and sitting in its racks were hundreds of shotguns: Purdeys, Holland & Hollands, Fox XEs, Francottes and on and on. I was impressed — blown away, really — so much so that four months later I quit a great job in the corporate world to go work there.
This was back in 1999, and at that time New England Arms was introducing a new line of over-under shotguns to the American market. These O/Us were made in Italy for NEA by Fabbrica Armi Isidoro Rizzini (F.A.I.R) and the 16 gauge you see here is one of those guns. It’s on Gunbroker.com now and the online auctions end 4/13/2015 @ 12:42:41 PM ET.
The NEA/FAIR O/Us are solid, reliable doubles. The sixteens were built on true 16-gauge frames, and that’s why they’re pretty lightweight. This one comes in at 6lbs, 3oz, – pretty trim for an O/U with 28″ bbls and a 14 1/2″ LOP.
FAIR I. Rizzini 16 gauge 28″ barrels: Excellent condition 16 gauge O/U. 28″ barrels. 14.5″ LOP. 6 pounds 3 ounces. Comes with Briley Chokes: SK, IC, LM, LM, M, IM. The gun has been fired less than 1000 times.
If you’re looking for a decent upland gun, you should take a look at this FAIR/NEA Model 500 O/U. It appears to be in excellent, original condition, and at $1,429.99 , it’s a good deal.
FAIR is an acronym for Fabbrica Armi Isidoro Rizzini, an Italian maker who has been around since 1971. NEA was the notorious New England Arms, the high-end gun dealer known as “The Finest Gunshop in the World” and “The Most Dangerous Place to Buy a Double.” NEA worked with FAIR in the late 1990s to develop a line of O/U shotguns for the US market. The Model 500 started out as the least expensive model in that line, but it was replaced a couple years later by the Model 400. There were also a couple upper-grade models – the Model 700 and the Model 900. Each model came in 12 gauge, 16 gauge, 20 gauge, 28 gauge, and .410.
All the FAIR/NEA over-unders were built on the reliable trigger-plate style actions featured on many modern Italian O/Us, and their single triggers were sound and dependable.