The M1014 Joint Service Shotgun is what happens when you put Marines in charge of choosing a new service-wide weapon. In 1999 the Military wanted a new combative shotgun and put the Marines in charge of finding it. The Marines went to Benelli, and Benelli produced the M4. Not the rifle, but that’s what they designated the new shotgun as. This semi-auto shotgun passed the USMC trials and became the M1014 Joint Service shotgun.

Shotguns might be niche weapons in modern military use, but when a shotgun’s needed, you want the very best. Social work with a shotgun is always a close-range endeavor and involves the judicious use of buckshot. In close-quarters combat, you can’t have an unreliable, inaccurate, or poorly designed weapon. Here are five reasons why the M1014 rules.

1) The M1014 Is Semi-auto

Prior to the M1014, the military’s choice of combat shotgun was a pump action. The Benelli broke new ground by offering a semi-auto action. For each press of the trigger, the Benelli barked and dispensed lead. Semi-autos not only offer a fast firing rate but make the gun easier to use with one hand, and help reduce recoil.

5 Reasons the M1014 Joint Service Shotgun Rules
(DVIDS)

The M1014’s semi-auto design made the Benelli a popular choice in such events as the Battle for Fallujah. In these close quarters city-wide battles, the shotgun’s decisive fight-stopping power made the close-quarters fights short. In the worst-case scenario, the semi-auto action allowed Marines to dispense 63 .33 caliber pellets in mere seconds.

2) Benelli’s ARGO System

When Benelli designed the M1014, they utilized a gas-operated system. This was a departure as Benelli’s M1, M2, and M3 systems utilized an inertia-driven design. Inertia guns are great, but the Marines wanted a gas gun. The reason being is that inertia-driven designs can become unreliable when fitted with accessories, especially heavy accessories.

5 Reasons the M1014 Joint Service Shotgun Rules
(DVIDS)

On the other hand, gas systems can withstand hefty accessories like night vision optics, laser aiming devices, lights, and spare ammunition. Benelli’s gas system wasn’t your normal gas operation. It was Benelli’s own ARGO system. ARGO stands for Auto Regulating Gas Operated system. This short-stroke piston-driven system reduces weight and ensures absolute reliability in almost all conditions.

3) Sights, Optics, and More

It’s 2021, and everything has optics! So should your combat shotgun. Especially when you’re a Marine doing room clearing in the middle of the night. You want a night vision optic, and the Picatinny rail at the top of the gun makes that easy to accomplish. It provides a rock-solid base for attaching optics of all types. From hefty night vision designs to daylight red dot sights, the Benelli M1014 can equip them all.

Other than the awesome optic base Benelli also equipped the gun with a rock-solid set of iron sights. These ghost ring style sights provide shooters with a rock-solid base for aiming rapidly and precisely. Perfect for both slugs and buckshot. These are easy to adjust and rifle like which makes them a natural transition from rifle to shotgun.

4) Adjust It

Stocks on shotguns can be tough. Body armor makes an adjustable stock a must-have, but adjustable stocks on shotguns can be tricky. Military weapons take a beating, and beatings find weak points. Combine that with the 12-gauge recoil, and if you don’t design the stock correctly, it will break. The M1014 wears a properly adjustable stock. It’s a rigid system that allows for easy adjustment for wearing body armor or for shorter shooters.

The fully collapsed position allows it to be easily short-stocked and also stored in a more compact package. If you keep the M1014 in the truck, then the shorter stock makes it easier to pack and easier to sling when it’s backing up a rifle.

Benelli M1014 Shotgun
(Courtesy of author)

5) The M1014 Packs a Wallop

Shotguns have a typical low capacity. That’s the problem with those big 12-gauge rounds and magazine tubes. The M1014 packs as many rounds as it can and gives you a seven-round tube. That’s a lot of buckshot, but beyond that, you can even “ghost-load” the gun by keeping one around on the shell lifter. With seven in the tube, one ghost-loaded, and one in the gun, you have nine rounds of buckshot ready to rock and roll.

Shotguns aren’t suppressive weapons and typically end the fight quite quickly. As such, nine rounds is often plenty!

Going Bang

The Benelli M1014 offers users an extremely capable and competent weapon for clearing rooms, working checkpoints, and ending fights quickly. It’s a fantastic shotgun, and the best news is that you can own one too! Benelli sells a multitude of M4 variants that offer you the same above qualities for home defense and duty use. If you want the king of combat shotguns, then the M1014 has you covered.

If you enjoyed this article, please consider supporting our Veteran Editorial by becoming a SOFREP subscriber. Click here to get 3 months of full ad-free access for only $1 $29.97.