- 3 Comments
- Last updated: 22/05/2018
This is another trip down memory lane for me, as Miroku, in my teenage years, was one of the big players when it came to shotguns and had a great reputation. Hailing from Japan, they continue today, producing not only guns of quality but excellent fit and finish at a realistic price. The MK60 design is certainly a continuation of the Browning clone action design, harking back to the The fixed chokes are to my liking and have a perfect finish Sixties. Miroku`s association with Browning is no coincidence and they continue to serve each other well; I am more familiar with their X Bolt and A Bolt stalking rifles.
This MK60 is certain a KISS shotgun, (Keep It Simple, Stupid), or in the literal term, as she’s a real beauty, being a grade 5 version.
You instantly notice the quality on this MK60; it’s an all real steel with minimal machining marks, if any at all. Yes, fairly weighty but all the better for it, as the handling is not affected but strength is enhanced.
You have a solid cross pin pivot that really locks the barrels in solidly, with plenty of life to it after 10s of thousands of firings and the typical rear locking lugs protruding through the base of the action. Add to this the large single piece locking bar that engages the rear barrel lug on closing and you have an elegant, fine looking and bomb proof action to barrel union.
You have the ejectors in the Deeley type forend and they are extremely positive and everything is just so nicely made and finished. The top lever is chequered to both sides and as you open the action there is no auto safety, which I like and the firing mechanism is the inertia type. To operate the barrel selector, the safety needs to be on, i.e. in the rear position.
The trigger is non-adjustable but well swept back to the rear of the trigger guard and as such is a delight to use with its grey finished smooth touch. The whole action is coin finished that sets off the engraving well – understated and elegant. The cut engraving adorns the whole action and is very well executed and combines scroll and foliate designs to action sides, top lever and trigger guard alike. On the base, you also have engraved ‘Miroku MK60 Sport’, denoting this model. Overall, a really great looking and wellmade action for the money.
I had 30-inch barrels fitted, but you can get 28- and 32-inchers too and these were fixed choked, which some may baulk at but I can see the reasoning behind it. Why over complicate an already great shooting design and it saves all that hassle deciding the best choke. These were on the tight side, ¾ and full and you could always retro fit some Teague or Briley chokes if you wanted.
The bores are over-bored, so less restriction of the shot column that transcends into less recoil and more even patterns. You have a wider rib of 7.7mm (not 10mm as manual stated), serrated on top with 17 ventilated spaces beneath to maximise air flow and increase cooling.
There are two highly visible white beads, one at the muzzle and one at 15.75-inches from the muzzles. The joining rib between the barrels is solid and the whole is superbly blued for a flawless finish. You also have a couple of nice extra touches, such as some walnut wedges sited 17.75-inches on the mid rib to perfectly locate the forend, a nice touch. These are 3-inch chambered but due to the fact they are not steel proofed, a large gold removable label states so; larger duck or goose loads are a no no!
The stock is anything but a stock item! Sorry, more superlatives. Outwardly looking like a typical sporter stock, the MK60 has a classic pistol grip and tulip forend profile. The beauty is in the fit and finish. The Grade 5 walnut is extremely well figured with rich, deep and a dark figuring on a red tinged background. It is American Claro walnut, hence the reddish colour and as such is very attractive. It has a lovely oil finish that just enhances the walnut more and this will increase in good looks as time rolls on. The forend is full in the hand and sports very well-cut chequering and borders, as is the pistol grip; nothing fancy, just good chequering for grip. This pistol grip is full but slim, with no palm swells and there’s 39.5mm drop at the comb and zero cast at the heel but 3mm cast at the toe makes for a stock that will suit most shooters. It comes up naturally and for me sits your eye directly looking down that rib. There is a silvered cartouche in the butt stock for your initials, but I don’t like that polyamide/plastic butt-plate – a pet hate of mine.
First up, no steel loads and that’s fine with me, this is a pure breed and steel in this gun would seem rude.! Instead I stuck to an array of pigeon and Game loads. It does have 3-inch chambers but I doubt many owners will use that length of cartridge, so I stuck to 2.5- and 2.75-inch loads.
Eley Special Pigeon is a heavier 32-gram load in a blue 70mm case with a fibre wad. I used a No. 6 shot loading and with the ¾ choke barrel I had a total of 263 pellets at 30-yards, of which 81 were in the central 15-inches. Great even pattern, quite tight and perfectly central to the bead.
Hull Imperial Game. Another fibre waded load with a lighter 28-gram load of No. 6s and in a red 65mm casing. Very smooth and lighter recoil, yet hard hitting with the ‘drop dead’ pellet loading from Hull. I had 151 pellets at 30-yards and distributed 83 outer and 68 inner. Lovely allrounder for game or pigeon.
Hull Driven Grouse. These copper plated cartridges are proving popular and their 65mm fibre wadded case has 28-grams of Cu No. 6 shot.
Designed for better penetration and even patterns in this fixed choke only, lead shot barrelled Miroku, you have a winner. Nice even shot patterns at 30-yards, with 62 pellets inner hits and 97 outer hits.
Best of all, was a few outings just walking the hedgerows, I had a half-dozen pigeons before they realised I was not a dog walker and I had a stick that went bang!
The MK60 is a classy shotgun for, in reality little money; they even make a matched pair for all those seasoned game shooters who like to have a loader at their shoulder.
It’s hard to describe the overall fit and finish of this Miroku MK60, as although the design has not changed for decades, it has that timeless quality. I love the Browning inspired design and I equally love the overall attention to detail in fit and finish and it’s just classy without being flashy.
She shoots straight and true and handles superbly, change that plastic butt-plate and its perfect in my book.
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