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I wish that I could say that my thoughts were something more profound than “wow they got a lot of gun in a small box” when I opened up the 1216. I could quickly see that their approach to a shotgun that would hold 16 rounds of ammunition was unique. I at first questioned the execution but was excited to see someone pushing the design envelope in a genuinely innovative way, rather than putting sprinkles on the newest trend.

The box contained the shotgun with one rotary magazine attached and a second rotary magazine sealed in a plastic wrapper. When I picked the gun up I was actually surprised at how light the package was. I was expecting something topping the scales at over 10 pounds, as most of these types of shotguns tend to be heavyweights even before being loaded with larger quantities of ammunition. It, in fact, weighs in at a mere 7.25 pounds.

The SRM Arms Model 1216 packs in a lot of firepower into a reasonably compact package. The semi-auto shotgun holds 15 shells of 12 gauge ammo.
The SRM Arms Model 1216 packs in a lot of firepower into a reasonably compact package. The semi-auto shotgun holds 16 shells of 12 gauge ammo.
A UNIQUE APPROACH

This gun was clearly designed from the ground up to be what it is. By that, I mean that this is not just another basic gun with a good idea bolted onto it. Oftentimes we find these new innovative features duct-taped onto last year’s hardware, and the resulting project resembles some kind of Frankenstein’s Gun. Not the case here; all the parts look like they belong.

The design is ergonomic and compact especially, considering that it features a detachable magazine with a 16-round capacity. While this gun is technically a “bullpup” design, at first blush it appears to be a hybrid kind of quasi-bullpup design. This is somewhat of an illusion as the one-piece stock also serves as a shroud to conceal the hammer and recoil springing mechanism. I believe that the pistol grip is mounted a little further forward than on most bullpup designs to facilitate recoil control.

The shooter’s support hand is located far forward ready to engage the dual levers (forward of this thumb) that allow the revolving magazine to be rotated.
The shooter’s support hand here is located far forward ready to engage the dual levers (forward of his thumb) that allow the revolving magazine to be rotated.
The semi-auto action of the gun feeds in a unique way: With a rotary magazine. The rotary magazine features four, four-round tubes. The action locks open when empty on one tube, then you press down on the ambidextrous release button at the front of the tube to allow you to then rotate to the next tube (either clockwise or counterclockwise; your choice), which automatically releases the bolt to feed the next shell from the fresh tube into the 3-inch chamber. As a result, you can quickly fire all 16 rounds from the shotgun.

The bolt features a roller-locked locking mechanism reminiscent of an HK design.
The action features a roller-delayed fast-cycling bolt that (I believe) works to reduce the felt recoil significantly. Okay, for all you gun geeks, the 1216 borrows the roller delay locking system from the HK design; and now for the normal people in the audience, this is a recoil-operated shotgun. The Model 1216 shotgun is held together with pushpins again clearly inspired by an HK, allowing easy access to the internals of the shotgun.

The 1216’s bullpup design allows the standard 18-inch barrel to fit in a platform that is only 32.5 inches in overall length. SRM Arms has avoided the horrendous triggers found in almost all of the bullpup-designed firearms; this one breaks at just over 6½ pounds. They accomplished this through a very unique design that resembles the hammer and bolt arrangement on an AR-15. The hammer is mounted in the center and comes up behind the bolt. This keeps the hammer closer to the trigger than a more “traditional” bullpup thereby eliminating the need for a long trigger linkage bar. The bolt impacts an upside down U-shaped buffer mated to the dual recoil springs below it. The sear actually sets behind the hammer as it does in an AR-15.

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