Rock Island brings the intimidation factor with the VRF14.
What The Box-Fed Semi-Auto Offers:
- Similar control layout to an AR-15.
- A terse 26-inch overall length.
- Nimble 14-inch barrel.
- Capability of handling 3-inch 12-gauge shells.
When it comes to box-magazine fed, semi-auto shotguns, AK-pattern guns have ruled the roost. Well, almost. A few years back, Armscor gave AR-style scatterguns a much-needed shot in the arm with the introduction of the VR80. Slim as a minute and able to run with the best of them, the 12-gauge, in some respects, set the standard at this end of the smoothbore market. Now its sister brand is jumping into the game with what can only be described as the VR80s very little brother.
While technically not classified as a shotgun, the Rock Island VRF14 is nevertheless a 12-gauge and like its older, bigger sibling is a gas-operated semi-automatic. However, it falls into that bizarre ATF category of “Firearm”, which essentially entails a shorter-than-average barrel and overall length, as well as a pistol grip. While it lacks some of the VR80's streamlining, the shorty still appears very wieldy and looks as intimidating as ever.
The 14 in VRF14 refers to the firearm's defining feature, its 14-inch barrel. Short in and of itself, combined with the clipped rear, where the buttstock has been removed, it creates an impressively compact package. Overall, the gun measures in at 26-inch, terse to say the least—ideal for a little something to slip behind the driver's seat in your truck or pitch into a pack. The VRF14 is fairly light, to boot. At 6.6 pounds, the gun should prove little burden to tote around, but remember there’s a tradeoff to this. Less heft equates to more recoil, per the laws of physics. Given the smoothbore’s 3-inch chamber, this is a concern.
Mercifully, Rock Island included an ample pistol-style grip to maintain the VRF14’s controllability, featuring rubberized finger grooves. Given the gun is laid out nearly identically to the VR80—that is like an AR—the wicked little shooter is also extremely familiar to operate. Upfront, the fore offers ample real estate to get a handle on the gun, with diagonal texturing to keep your mitts in place.
Other notables of the VRF14 include a sling adaptor on the butt, an aluminum alloy receiver, a side charging handle and half rails at 3 and 9 o’clock. The gun also has full-length rails up to and below, and ships with flip-up sight—in case you don’t want to throw on a red dot. And it’s compatible with Mobil Choke tubes. Some might be disappointed to hear, the VRF 14 only ships with a 5-round magazine.
But buck up, it’s compatible with all VR magazines, so 9- and 19-round mags are available if you need to scale up.
Rock Island anticipates the VRF14 to hit store shelves after August 1. And while it hasn’t officially released an MSRP, various online retailers have pre-sale pages listing it in the $500 neighborhood.
Barrel Length: 14 inches
Overall Length: 26 inches
Weight: 6.6 pounds
Sights: Flip Up
For more information on the VRF14, please visit armscor.com.
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