Lanber Sporter Mod.2097 Sporting Lux
Not so long ago we tested a 20 bore Lanber and concluded that it was a workmanlike gun likely to give reliable service for many years...
Not so long ago we tested a 20 bore Lanber and concluded that it was a workmanlike gun likely to give reliable service for many years. This month we are look at the new 3î chambered 12 bore Lanber sporter, known as the 2097 Sporing Lux. It is a gun that has had quite a substantial makeover. Lanber guns are made in Spain and imported into the UK by GMK of Fareham, a firm well known as distributors for Beretta and Sako amongst other famous names.
First visual impressions of the test are certainly very good, the gun looks much smarter than previous Lanbers thanks to an attractive grey finish on the action action combined with some neat scroll work and the Lanber name in gold at the bottom of the action walls (this has been done in good taste and looks well). Tight scroll work is also seen on the base of the action. The wood work is also smart. It has a semi-matt finish, a medium-thick, brown, rubber pad and very neat checkering (probably, laser-cut).
Picking the gun up one is immediately struck by the fact that it feels solid. This is no lightweight. It is a little stiff to open and close ñ but will no doubt quickly loosen up with a little use. The gun comes to face and shoulder well, but it is not especially lively in the hands (a positive quality for some people). Balance is a distinctly muzzle heavy. The stock is a bit short at (a whisker over) 14 3/8. Comb, grip and forend shapes are adequate ñ
though I thought the comb might have done with a bit more shape. Drop measurements were 1 7/16 and 2 1/4" - a little low for a sporter where you cannot usually go wrong with 1 3/8" and 2 1/8" as standard dimensions.
O.K. let's put the rest of the gun under the magnifying glass. The 30" monobloc barrels boast a tapered and ventilated sighting rib and ventilated joining ribs. The sighting rib is flat. It is about 12mm at the breech end and goes down by a couple of millimetres at the muzzles. There is a shallow centre channel. I thought the rib looked quite nice, but my preference would have been for something a little thinner, either a 10-8mm taper or a simple 10 or 8mm parallel design. There is a small, translucent red front site of good pattern.
The barrels are made from Chrome Moly steel. The gun bears Spanish proof marks for 3" (76mm)shells at 1370 BAR. This shows the manufacturers have confidence in their product. Bothbarrels have bore diameters of 18.5 which is wider than some and the better for it (as I have said many times in these pages, I often find that wider bores help by reducing felt recoil). The bores are well finished and the blueing is excellent. I did note that one tube The top) seemed very slightly out of true (a common malady even with much more expensive guns). The forcing cones were of medium length (which always gets my approval).
I did note while looking at the proof marks that the barrel weight was 1600 grams. This is heavy for 30î tubes and would certainly support my contention that the gun is a little muzzle heavy. It is probably as a result of the gun being 3î chambered and multi-choked. Both features that tend to encourage manufacturers to veer on the side of caution with regard to barrel wall thickness. Generally, the barrels pass muster very well. The action style is familiar. Inspired by Browning and Beretta. There are bifurcated lumps on the mono-bloc (like a Beretta or Perazzi)which engage the usual stud pins on the inner action walls. This may also be called a ëtrunnion' system. It results in a fairly low action profile ñ a little lower than a Browning or Winchester over and under, a little higher than a Beretta or Perazzi.
Workmanship within the coil spring-powered action is fine. Machining is very neat (save for a few cutter marks on the action floor). All the controls ñ safety, top lever etc function well. The barrel selector on the safety was exceptionally positive and practical (they can be far too fiddly). This one might actually be used when one was under pressure. The ejectors functioned well and were properly time and quite powerful. My only significant gripe concerns the trigger pulls which I thought rather mediocre with a bitt too much creep (though they might be improved quitre easily by a competent gunsmith). The new action finish certainly gets my thumbs up, it is a quantum leap or two from previous Lanbers and is achieved by a plasma-nitriding process. We have mentioned that the stock briefly. Generally, I thought it was made from plain but decent wood. It has an integrity that is missing from some cheaper Italian imports and I would guess that there is more handwork than the modern average in it. It was a bit short so, with the pad removed, there is just 13 æî of wood. With a 1î pad you could just get 14 æî. Why not make it that length in the first place as Browning do? It may be that Spaniards are shorter than Belgians and Americans on average. I would certainly advise having at least 14î of wood. The grip and comb I think might be improved too. I have already noted that I thought that the comb could do with a little more shape. The grip was a bit short for my hand.
Well, I like to tell it as it is. I did not especially enjoy shooting the gun, but it was mainly down to the rather poor trigger pulls. As a product it has integrity and I am sure that it will last well. I also know that gunsmiths have a great deal of time for Lanbers ñ they are simple and reliable. With a little extra length on the stock and little effort expended on the triggers it might make an excellent all-round gun at a reasonable price. In the looks department it is difficult to fault at this price point.
All Prices Are Guides Due to the Changes in US & European Exchange Rates