the road to cortona

clayshootingusa.com

the road to cortona

THE ROAD TO

CORTONA

A FEW MONTHS AGO READERS WERE

TREATED TO AN EXCELLENT REVIEW BY

TOM CERETTO OF THE CORTONA RANGE OF

SHOTGUNS BEING IMPORTED BY KALISPEL

CASE LINE. INTRIGUED BY THE REVIEW,

DON BRUNT DECIDED TO VISIT THE

FACTORY IN ITALY TO SEE HOW THE GUNS

ARE MADE AND MEET SOME OF THE

PEOPLE BEHIND THE PRODUCT RANGE.

TURKISH WALNUT IS USED THROUGHOUT THE RANGE.

FACTORYVISIT


LUCA RIZZINI, CURRENT

PRESIDENT OF F.A.I.R.

1971 WAS A GOOD YEAR

Not only was it the birth of a

‘certain journalist’, but it also saw

the creation of F.A.I.R. (Fabbrica

Armi Issodoro Rizzini), founded in

the heart of the Val Trompia

gunmaking region. From the very

start, the decision was made that

the business would combine the

latest technologies with the

traditional gunmaking skills that

have been handed down from

generation to generation in this,

the gunmaking heart of Italy. This

ethos still rings true today as a

wander around the

factory floor

FACTORYVISIT

quickly confirms. Yes, there are

still the old benches equipped with

a multitude of chisels, oils and

gunsmiths tools, but they now sit

alongside advanced engineering

equipment, such as CNC

machines, that can produce 200

components in 24 hours without

any human intervention.

Go to a similar factory in any

other industrialized nation and you

might find an equal or even greater

level of technology being utilized –

however, you wouldn’t find the

same human touch which is

indicative of the Italian culture and

especially its gunmaking tradition.

The mood in the factory is

businesslike – but with that

relaxed, casual, humorous but still

intense character that the Italians

do so well. A joke is called across

the factory floor in Italian, no

doubt referring to one of the Italian

male’s favorite passions – soccer,

fast cars or women. A gentle

approving laugh is its answer.

F.A.I.R. President, Luca Rizzini,

is typically Italian and chatting to

him in the showroom it is apparent

that gunmaking runs in his veins.

His passion is obvious. He has

been at the factory since finishing

college some 20 years ago. The

founder of the company, his 62

year old father, now works on the

THE SPECIFICATION OF THIS CORTONA

LEGEND MAKES IT A POPULAR CHOICE.

SPORT MODEL SPECIFICATIONS

MANUFACTURER: F.A.I.R.

MARCHENO, VT ITALY

IMPORTER: KALISPEL CASE LINE

CUSICK, WASHINGTON

GUN TYPE: MODIFIED BOSS STYLE BOXLOCK

RECEIVER: STEEL CNC MACHINED

GUN WEIGHT: 7 LBS 15 OZ.

LENGTH OF PULL: 14.75"

DROP AT COMB: ADJUSTABLE

DROP AT HEEL: 2.40"

CAST OFF: 0.150"

TOE OUT: 0.20"

OVERALL LENGTH: 47.75" WITH 30" BARRELS

BARRELS: 30" & 32"

BORE: 0.726/0.726

CHAMBERS: 2.75"

TRIGGER: MECHANICAL SET AND ADJUSTABLE

LOP TRIGGERS

TRIGGER PULL: 5.5 LBS AND 6.5 LBS

SAFETY: MANUAL TOP TANG SINGLE SELECTIVE

RIB: VENTED 10MM

CENTER RIB: VENTED

CHOKES INCLUDED: FIVE EXTENDED 3 /4"

CONICAL PARALLEL LENGTH: 2.75".

CYLINDER: 0.730"

IC: 0.010"

MODIFIED: 0.020"

IMP. MODIFIED: 0.033". FULL: 0.043"

OTHERS AVAILABLE AT EXTRA COST.

factory floor – always at his

happiest when working on one of

the benches.

The 40 staff here enjoy their

work and take pride in what they

do, good news for the company

and better news still for the

customer – product is backed by a


72 CLAYSHOOTINGUSA

AN ADJUSTABLE STOCK COMES

AS STANDARD ON THE

12 GAUGE MODELS.

lifetime

warranty on

workmanship,

material and defects.

According to Al Hague of

Kalispel, they have yet to have a

warranty claim since the guns

were first imported to the States in

2005/6. (The factory trained

service team is based in

Victorville, California.)

HEALTHY EXPORTS

F.A.I.R. is the second largest

exporter of O/U shotguns in Italy,

making between 12,000 - 15,000

pieces per year. As a result, the

basis for the Cortona’s action is

tried and tested. However, the

company’s expertise in production

goes further than that and is

acknowledged by other

manufacturers, many of which

purchase their own components

from F.A.I.R. In fact, you may

already have shot with a gun much

of which was produced by the

FACTORYVISIT

factory without even knowing it!

They are also one of the few

gunmakers in Italy producing

genuine small bore guns on scaled

actions.

Both wing shooting and clay

busting guns leave Gardone to

every corner of the globe with the

US being the largest single

market. Don’t be fooled into

thinking that the Cortona

is just another Italian

gun taken straight off

the shelf and shipped

to the States. Far

from it. Back

in 2005

Mark

Taverniti

of Kalispel

went to Italy

to ensure that

the guns would

suit the demands of

the US market. He

certainly achieved that

goal – ported barrels, a good

sized palm swell and an

adjustable comb are the kinds of

features rarely found on a

European spec sporting clays gun.

That tailoring of the product to fit

its buyers needs explains why the

guns have proved to be such a

MONOBLOC’S WAITING FOR THEIR BARRELS.

FASTIDIOUS QUALITY CONTROL EXPLAINS THE ABSENCE OF WARRANTY CLAIMS.

success – despite difficult trading

conditions resulting from the

current exchange rate against the

Euro.

FURTHER EXPANSION

That positive growth curve is

reflected in the decision of Luca

Rizzini to expand the size of the

factory in Marcheno, from its

current 55,000 sq ft to well over

60,000 sq ft. This will allow for the

increased size of the finishing,

quality control and manufacturing

departments. A sound investment

considering that the company is

one of only a handful who produce

all their components in house –

except for stocks and forends.

Rigorous quality control is a

must for any company that

manufactures so many parts and at

F.A.I.R. this is an integral part of


…THE STAFF ENJOY THEIR

WORK AND TAKE PRIDE IN

WHAT THEY DO, GOOD

NEWS FOR THE COMPANY

AND BETTER NEWS STILL

FOR THE CUSTOMER.

every gun’s journey from parts bin

to dealer. Not only are individual

components checked, but once a

gun is completed it is taken down

into the subterranean firing range

for further testing. In fact, if you

have ever driven along the main

road that runs through the

Gardone Valley, you will have

passed over the range which

74 CLAYSHOOTINGUSA

FACTORYVISIT

MACHINES AND ARTISANS

WORK SIDE BY SIDE.

stretches from one side

under the highway to

the other.

US MARKET

The Italian side of the

operation may be

passionate about its

products but no more

so than the team at

Kalispel Case Line.

Founded in 1974 by the

Kalispel Native

American Indian tribe,

the company initially

started life to provide

revenue and

employment for

members of the tribe

on the small 4,654 acre

reservation. Based in

Cusick, the company

now makes up to 15,000

cases per year

designed to hold every size, shape

and grade of firearm or bow and

has a reputation for excellence.

Al Hague of Kalispel is

extremely happy with the Cortona

and was keen to explain why. “We

wanted guns that were well

proven, that we knew would be

reliable. The product had to meet

the standards of quality and

MULTI MILLION EURO INVESTMENT IN

EQUIPMENT KEEPS THE COMPANY AT

THE CUTTING EDGE.

RIGOROUS QUALITY CONTROL IS A MUST FOR ANY

COMPANY THAT MANUFACTURES SO MANY PARTS AND AT

F.A.I.R. THIS IS AN INTEGRAL PART OF EVERY GUN’S

JOURNEY FROM PARTS BIN TO DEALER.

EXTENDED CHOKES, PORTED BARRELS, AND A FIBRE OPTIC

SIGHT ARE ALL PART OF THE STANDARD SPEC.


THE ASSEMBLY PROCESS.

FACTORYVISIT

reliability that are synonymous

with our cases and it had to be

affordable for those who want to

enjoy their sport without spending

a fortune. The guns feel great in

the shoulder straight out of the

box, well balanced and pointable –

yet steady. We have had nothing

but positive feedback about them.

With a feature list equalling that

found on more expensive guns, we

are confident that the Cortona

range of Sporters meets the

requirements of shooters in the

US. We have 50 dealers around the

Country, with whom we have built

good relationships, though we can

sell direct to anyone who lives

further than 50 miles away from a

dealer if they would prefer not to

travel. We are pleased with how

the brand has grown in such a

short time and excited about the

future. Working together with a

quality manufacturer like F.A.I.R.,

we know the future will be bright.”

(For more information visit –

www.cortonashotguns.com) ■

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