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Hatsan Escort Magnum

Hatsan Escort Magnum

A while ago as some of you may remember, I took a close look at one of Hatsan’s Escort pump-action 12 bores. To say it had an air of individuality would be an understatement, as a friend likening it to shooting with a vending machine. Maybe a little unfair, what the pump and the semi-auto you see here emphasised was the fact that with their Escort range, Hatsan have more or less mastered the manufacturing of no frills, working shotguns at a quality and price hardly anyone else could hope to compete with.

Although you can buy yourself one with Magic Wood, a faux walnut finish, it’s more than likely those potential owners will opt for one of the three Mossy Oak camo versions, or the all-black synthetic job seen here. Let’s face it, if you’re looking for a semi-auto, 12-bore of this ilk, it’s probably not for use as a sporting weapon, the foreshore or pest and vermin control being its most likely purposes. That said, there is definitely a place for shotguns such as the Escort Magnum, an honest single barrel that purports to be nothing more than it is - a tough as old boots workhorse. Plus it would also make a good choice for those looking for a cheap yet reliable Practical Shotgun.

Possible Variations

Like the pump, the Magnum arrives in a large, colourful cardboard box eagerly displaying all the possible variations of the Magnum you can acquire in 12 or 20-bore along with the capacity variations. For most, the 2+1 gun will be the preferred model although with Section 1 paperwork, a magazine extension is available to give the Magnum a 7+1 capability, ideal for most practical and working situations.

Weighing in at a fraction less than 8lbs, the first thing that strikes you about the Magnum is that it’s all barrel and action. If further proof were needed, a quick measure of the length of pull revealed an extremely short 13 7/8”, one of the shortest I’ve encountered for quite a while especially when coupled with 1 11/16” drop and comb and 2½” drop at heel. If nothing else this diminutive dimension and overtly short synthetic stock emphasized the Magnum’s workman like intentions. Though the thick soft recoil pad promised a deal of comfort when using the heavier loads, which is no bad thing!

Moving forward, the black anodised receiver is crafted from aircraft grade aluminium with the gun’s name discreetly embossed into each side, the only bright work being the inside of the action when the bolt is drawn rearwards. Apart from the now familiar cross-bolt safety that’s situated to the rear of the visually, rough hued trigger guard, the bolt release is situated on the left of the receiver, with a magazine cut off lever on the right, just below the bolt handle. This allows you to single load a cartridge and literally switch off the magazine feed as required.

Well Proportioned

The well proportioned and vented forend slides neatly over the Magnum’s self-regulating gas system which in turn locates the 3” chambered, 28” fully anodised, nickel-chromium-molybdenum, chrome-lined barrel. Finished off with a simple brass bead sat on top of the high, vented 7mm rib, the gun comes with a full set of short interchangeable multi-chokes and a basic ‘T’ shaped key to fit them.

Assembly is achieved by first ensuring the bolt is ‘in battery’ before sliding the barrel into place. Once located, lock the bolt into its open position and the barrel will then slide fully home. Once in position, you then need to ensure that the forend locates within the fixed shim on the lower part of the front of the receiver. All that remains is to spin the mag cap on and, as the saying goes; you’re ready to rock and roll.

Loading up is reminiscent of that all time classic, the Browning A5. Once you’ve chambered the first round, you must then keep the bolt release fully depressed to unlock the loading gate, something you must do for each additional round. Alternatively, if you want to keep the Magnum single shot only, depressing the cut off means just one round at a time, ideal if the Escort is being used by a first timer or in situations where you want to keep the gun perfectly safe after you’ve just taken your shot.

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Quick Reaction Force

What the overall lack of size does do is to improve the Magnum’s speed of use and handling abilities in the confines of a pigeon hide, or out of a 4x4 or if shooting ‘gun down’. It also rather emphasizes that the Escort is at heart a tactical weapon with a design structure angled towards situations slightly more intense than a Sunday morning’s Skeet layout. The 7lbs 8oz total weight is centred three inches forward of the receiver.

Complete with a 3” magnum chamber that’s more than capable of handling both lightweight competition loads and sizable cartridges that fall firmly into the FAC category, the Magnum proved itself to be extremely versatile; 50g BB’s or 24g sub – sonic shells all cycled with equal alacrity. This ability to work with lighter loads also means that given the Magnum’s dimensions it will also serve as an ideal shotgun for someone starting out, as it will function reliably yet not beat the hell out of the novice shooter and put them off.

About the time I was ready to test the Magnum, my friends at Bond & Bywater commented that they just acquired themselves the magazine extension for their own example and wouldn’t it be a good idea to try the gun in 7-shot guise. Couldn’t have agreed more since in my opinion seven shots beat three any day of the week. Similarly, if you’ve got the chit, all it costs is around £15 for Escort’s mag extension.

True Purpose

Tackling the first round of 30 birds ESP, the first and most lasting impression was how high the Magnum shot, to a degree even easy birds were passing by unscathed whilst the average trigger pull weight of 7lbs 6oz wasn’t helping when it came to smoothness of operation. With the choke changed to Cylinder soon improved mine and the Magnum’s combined performance, something that also reinforced the Escort’s true purpose in life.

With a wider choke and Express Supreme 9’s starting in a gun-down stance, the short butt allowed for an extremely quick mount and shoot, with close range birds absolutely decimated. Equally, with Full choke, long distance crossers or high overhead birds such as those a duck or goose shooter would encounter were despatched with ease. The Magnum’s high shooting characteristics seemed to automatically add the additional lead long range targets require. Likewise, when tried with Express Max Game 50g BB’s, 1’s and 2’s, the Magnum was surprisingly soft to shoot, the thick recoil pad and gas system combining to take the sting out of these high performance cartridges.


What you’ve to be careful of is the shortness of the stock. With the Magnum mounted, there’s a definite feeling of being cramped up around the gun, with the back of your thumb nudging against your nose, which is not ideal for the correct sight picture, or when using magnum loads. This aspect also seems to be compounded by the Escort’s weight distribution. The feeling of needing to pull the gun further back into your shoulder negated by the fact that there’s nothing more to pull back, whilst the low comb does tend to leave your cheek searching for somewhere to rest against unless you push your entire head forward, which brings us once again back to the short stock.

Yes at times it does seem to clank during cycling and no, the Magnum isn’t one of the most refined semis you’ll ever use. But for £412 when equated to what the Escort Magnum’s capable of, the whole parcel has got to add up to one of the best practical and working package on the market. OK so it’s no ‘looker’ and wouldn’t prove to be exactly at home around the clay layouts. That said, once you’ve got yourself into how this Escort works, it’ll more than hold its own. It may not be a true ‘Turkish delight’ but if you’re on a budget or want one of the most resilient 12-bores out there, Escort’s Magnum takes a lot of beating.

PRICE: £412


  • Name: Hatsan Escort Magnum
  • Type: semi-auto
  • System: gas/piston
  • Calibre: 12-bore/3” chamber
  • Capacity: 2+1 (sect 2) Sect 1 also available (FAC only)
  • Barrel: 28” M/C


  • So, what is the price in American dollars? £ = what in dollars?

    Default profile image
    bob baumann
    06 Sep 2015 at 10:14 PM
  • For more rounds I use the Remington 10 round extension tube ..works like a charm

    10 in the tube - 1 ghost chambered- and 1 in the chamber for a total of 12 shells.

    Default profile image
    29 Aug 2015 at 02:30 AM
  • Use the mildest form of thread locker that you can get away with; in other words what will hold the chokes tight in the barrel but not make it impossible to remove the chokes. Loose chokes can cause multiple problems the worst being tightening them in a oment of frustration with your hand over the muzzle with the gun loaded! The next possibility is the loose choke being deformed by the steel shot hitting the gap between the barrel and the choke when it is loose. And of course loose chokes won't be doing your confidence much good, or your pattern for that matter. Tighten things up!

    Default profile image
    27 Feb 2015 at 10:08 PM
  • how often should i need to check my chokes in the hatsan magnum ,they are the extended type, and need to tighten them after every 3 or 4 shots70

    Default profile image
    c perrins
    27 Feb 2015 at 04:21 PM
  • I talked to an armorer at the US distributor of Hatsan. He stepped me through taking it partially apart and lubricating the gas piston. I haven't tried to fire it since then, though, as other matters have taken precedence.

    Default profile image
    20 Dec 2014 at 04:23 PM
  • I own an Escort PS Magnum 12 gage , and I would like to buy an extended tube magazine for it . Any assistance would be greatly appreciated . I sent an email to Hatsan arms co . 2 weeks ago and have not heard back . Thank you . Luke .

    Default profile image
    Luke Godin
    20 Dec 2014 at 02:29 PM
  • If this is brand new it is still under warranty, t return to the seller for repair or refund..or more likely, instruction on how to rectify the problem. I would try a box or two of the heaviest cartridge possible before even starting to complain.
    So maybe your idea re 3 inch could work...even so don't throw it away..take it apart and check that the gas tap holes from the barrel are drilled through and clear etc etc. please report back whatever the outcome..there are too many satisfied customers of Hatsan shotguns to make yours anything but a possible exception that can be made to function correctly.

    Default profile image
    31 Oct 2014 at 10:11 PM
  • I have a new Hatsan 12 bore autoloading model. It jams on about one shot out of three. That is with 2 3/4" shells. I'll try it with 3" shells before I throw it away.

    Default profile image
    31 Oct 2014 at 04:16 PM
  • Re rifled slugs..any choke other than full choke seems to work..but check the condition of the wads after firing..if the petals have been chopped off, the constriction of the barrel is too tight.

    Re the steel shot..do you mean 28 gr steel shot? No problems except the consensus seems to be... don't use full choke when firing steel shot as the steel shot does not squeeze down at all like lead can...

    Default profile image
    26 Oct 2014 at 01:29 AM
  • Hi if anyone knows if I can use for Hatsan Escort Magnum 12 G Semi-A RH Game 28'' Multi steel cartridges?

    Default profile image
    25 Oct 2014 at 10:37 PM
  • Can you run rifled slugs through the field barrel with a modified choke?

    Default profile image
    07 Apr 2014 at 01:06 AM
  • I got my Escort Magnum two duck seasons ago to try an automatic as I had always used pumps. I didn't want to spend a great deal on a "try" nor do I like to borrow guns. I love it. The first about 200 shells through it I had about 5 failures to load the next shell with just a push on the charging handle to complete the cycle. After that no problems at all. If I had spent twice as much on the same gun I would still be happy. The next auto I buy will be an Escort Magnum.

    Default profile image
    D. Wood
    31 Mar 2014 at 12:20 AM
  • my escort magnum has just gone back for repair its 3 months old and jams all the time. the cartridges get stuck between the loading arm and the bolt release. i really like this gun and i hope its just a minor problem that can easily be fixed. the breech does not stay open after the last shot either.

    Default profile image
    Ian Roundhill
    14 Mar 2014 at 03:27 AM
  • Please check your locking lug on the top of the bolt as soon as possible.
    I bought a second hand Escort Magnum serial number 59548 two days ago with a "sticky' bolt" which "sometimes jams a bit" according to the previous owner.
    Sure enough, it sometimes stuck; but it was inconsistent ; but did seem to occur more often when the bolt was released and flew forward with no round being chambered.
    Upon stripping the mechanism I found that the locking lug which is captured in position by the firing pin and it's spring on the top of the bolt had broken into 2 pieces at the 90 degree angle.
    The inconsistency was explained by the rotation of the bottom segment when the bolt slammed home.
    I do not like to think what could have happened if it had failed to lock when it did not jam....and I fired it...
    A local gun shop keeps these locking lugs on hand because it apparently is "not an uncommon occurrence."
    Worth a check, Nigel.....

    after renewing the locking lug the gun performed well..and safely.

    Default profile image
    05 Apr 2013 at 10:26 AM
  • Stephen

    The Hatsan is a semi-automatic shotgun and the term 'gas piston' means that gas from the firing cartridge is bled from the barrel and directed backwards to push a piston that is connected to the bolt by rods. This movement unlocks the breech to eject the fired cartridge and at the same time compresses a spring that then pushes the bolt forward to pick up a live round and chamber it and lock the bolt ready for the next shot.

    No filling of gas is required or compression struts as the shotgun shell generates it every time. Not sure if Hatsan make a stainless steel finish, best ask them or if you live in England the UK importer - Edgar Brothers Ltd, 01625 613177

    Default profile image
    PC moore
    13 Aug 2012 at 10:30 AM
  • Hi there!

    Im looking to purchase one of these (Escort MP-A) and have two questions.

    1, It states this gun is a gas/piston gun. Does this mean that it has to be charged with a gas to operate? Or is this simply a self-air compression piston? (Sorry for the lack of knowledge, am new to the field)

    2, Does Hatsan produce this gun in marine finish, like the Escort PS Marine Version? As I am partial to the composite black stock and stainless-like steel finish.

    Sorry for the novice questions, hope you can help.

    Default profile image
    Stephen Allman
    13 Aug 2012 at 01:52 AM
  • i read every one's comments with interest ... just obtained my shot gun and only paid 80 pounds for it.... so i think i got a great deal....

    Default profile image
    02 Jun 2012 at 07:46 AM
  • lookin at buying an escort waterfowl xtreme but dont want to buy something then find out its not a good gun that will last me bc the price is so cheap it is hard for me to just jump right on it any thoughts

    Default profile image
    14 Feb 2012 at 04:36 AM
  • I have two Hatsan Escorts, a standard Magnum (2+1) and a FAC version (5+1+7) thanks to a custom extension tube) I have found them to be very good indeed. As a clay gun they both fit me like a glove, which has allowed me to win several big clay comps, as a tool in the field it is faultless. They are not everyone's cup of tea and i do get comments from alot of people when i am seen using it to smash clays. Usual derogatory comments are soon stoped when you straight 100 DTL with it, and the look on "Beretta, Kriegoff, Browning - man's" face when they realise they have been beaten by a £400 plastic shotgun is truley PRICELESS.

    Default profile image
    21 Jan 2012 at 09:31 PM
  • I may be wrong, but I believe the whole Escort range has an angled, chequered pistol grip as standard

    Default profile image
    Pat Farey
    20 Dec 2011 at 02:38 AM
  • I am interested in purchasing one of these guns at my local big 5. The Escort Magnum I lokked at had a pistol grip stock does anybody have any comments on this application?

    Default profile image
    Bill Harrison
    18 Dec 2011 at 08:03 PM
  • great gun great pigeon gun and rabbit cant fault them on the wildfowl either

    Default profile image
    05 Jun 2010 at 11:00 AM
  • ive only had my escort auto in 12g for a few months but already i can say its an awesome shotgun, it cycles what ever i put through it and have only had one cycle jam. easy to maintain/clean too!!! if you dont have one in your armoury then get out there and get one!!!!

    Default profile image
    matt stubbs
    15 Feb 2010 at 10:06 PM
  • Owned the 3" magnum for a while now, what a piece of kit ! , regardless of what some people say, this is " THE " tool for vermin control, I would recommend it to anyone, i've used different load sizes down to 21g and haven't had any problems at all.
    At 5ft 8" the gun is a perfect fit for me and with a dodgy shoulder the ventilated stock means I can use the heaviest load all day and still feel fresh after a good days shooting, blindin piece of kit!!

    Default profile image
    Tony Delaney
    08 May 2009 at 05:35 PM
  • I have owned my Hatsan Escort for several months and have used it for clays and vermin... What a gun!!! It has performed flawlessly and for less than £330 such great value. I would happily recommend this gun for those wanting an all round semi action shotgun for relatively little money and a three year warranty.

    Default profile image
    William Pasquier
    21 Apr 2009 at 11:14 PM
  • Hatsan aside, which is a great gun, it's good to see an importer supporting their product so well. Well done Edgars...

    Default profile image
    Pete Moore
    05 Apr 2009 at 11:08 AM
  • I have owned an Escort for about 3 years and I think that they are a superb gun, especially when you consider that I paid just £330 for mine new with a three year warranty. Though I've not really needed it as it has proven extremely reliable and will cycle anything from 50g down to 21g without complaint. I know people who have bought semi's costing 3 or 4 times as much from well known makers who cannot use anything under 28g! Yet the Hatsan just keeps working no matter what you put through it.

    The only problem I have had occured when the clip holding the action bar to the sleeve, which is operated on by the gas piston, broke. I e-mailed Edgar Brothers on Sunday and had a new part FOC by Tuesday together with an apology and explanation that there had been a bad batch of clips. This was easily fitted and the gun has been fine ever since.

    Default profile image
    Paul Barlow
    04 Apr 2009 at 10:46 PM
  • Yes for the money the Hatsan is quite some gun and your comments echo that of many other happy owner/users too.

    Default profile image
    Pete Moore
    31 Mar 2009 at 11:13 AM
  • I purchased a five shot synthetic escort two years ago for use as a vermin gun and have never really put it down since. It seems to fit my shooting habits splendidly and has been surprisingly good for clays also. The reciever has a dove tail machined to it and I sometimes put a red dot on top when rabbiting for speed of targeting.
    Whilst the gun comes as a three shot for the UK market it appears to manufactured as a five shot, as such the magazine tube extention is only neccessary if you feel you need it.
    The ability to close off the magazine has come in handy for rapidly loading something bigger when a fox becomes a possibility.

    P.S. Thanks to the Gun Room in Ivybridge for obtaining it for me so fast and cheaply!

    Default profile image
    Jonathan Angel
    30 Mar 2009 at 11:37 PM

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