Earlier this year, I took on the assignment of creating an Athlon Outdoors video on the Fabarm STF/12. As a contributor, this was initially just another assignment, another gun to review and share my experiences with you. As a lover of rifles, I thought, “It’s a shotgun,” so I wasn’t overly excited as I didn’t expect anything beyond the typical 12-gauge experience. Boy was I wrong.
Fabarm STF/12 Custom Challenge
The Fabarm STF/12, all puns aside, literally blew me away with its fit and finish, and excellent manners. This Italian pump-action wonder caught me completely off-guard. Every surface of the Fabarm is right with the materials coming together to create ear pleasing mechanical noises, accompanying tones and satisfying tactility. Clicks. Clacks. Schuu-lunks. Noises that you would find written out in your favorite graphic novel (read comic book) are delivered in an acoustic display that is wonderful. And I truly mean that.
The STF feels as if its one piece of material with a ball-bearing-driven pump action. All of the movements are positive with mechanical and audible feedback. These attributes guide you in its function, letting you know what you’re doing at every moment of operation. I’m used to these types of interactions with bolt-action rifles and custom 1911s, but not so much with pump-action shotguns—especially ones dubbed as tactical types.
Shooting the actual STF/12 itself also caught my attention. The recoil—it’s different, even without the included muzzle brake. It’s solid but muted. It doesn’t want to knock you over. So, we’ve established that the STF/12 is a great shotgun, thus, a great inclusion for this issue’s Custom Challenge giveaway.
Making the Wasteland Wonder
The Fabarm STF/12 would be an excellent if not necessary purchase for any shotgun lover, but imagine receiving one as prize package! Well, that’s’ what’s happening with the very Fabarm STF/12 that I’ve been drooling all over in the previous paragraphs. And while the STF is awesome, we thought we’d spice it up and make it different—as in “Apocalypse Wow” themed, much like the bulk of the editorial content in this issue.
The most notable change is the custom paint job. This Road Warrior meets steampunk finish is absolutely amazing, setting the tone of high-speed desert, post apocalyptic shenanigans, which is quite fitting for the man responsible for its look—Bryan Welch, owner and operator of Pro 2 Customs in Phoenix, Arizona. Pro 2 is without a doubt one of the premiere custom gun coating/finishing businesses in the space—and there are many.
Lots of people can Cerakote a gun, but few possess the artistic ability to take a concept from a brain spark to a final, fully fledged, period accurate, color and tonally correct, functioning representation of that spark. It takes a special amount of talent and skill (which aren’t the same), and Bryan has it. I watched as he created this finish in a matter of a couple of hours while I waited. We talked throughout the process, which never seemed to distract him from this meticulous execution.
Pro 2 Custom Delivers the Look
Bryan created everything from a brushed metal look to convincing rust, patina and a wooden finished collapsible AR stock. Coating since 2015, Pro 2 Custom has completed some 13,000-plus serialized guns. This doesn’t include slides and other parts that aren’t serialized. This is experience that’s hard to find. On top of that, Pro 2 provides coatings for automotive, laser engraving (which is insane), grip work, custom guns and built-to-order index holsters.
We didn’t stop at the refinish. The Fabarm STF/12 is a great platform for tactical accuracy, so we added an Aimpoint Micro H-2 with 2-MOA dot. This sits on the Picatinny rail that runs the length of the STF and nestles in nicely with the ghost ring sight assembly for a near co-witness.
Also included with this awesome scattergun is a SureFire Scout Light Pro. It provides 1,000 lumens of blinding output to stop anyone and anything in its tracks. It also has and impressive 1.25 hours of run time.
The STF itself has an impressive list of features outside of the additional custom touches, including a monolithic 7075 receiver, 18-inch barrel, 5+1 feed tube, heat shield and compensator with spikes. All of this adds up to be one of the best firearms on the market and an insane Custom Challenge giveaway gun.
For more information, visit fabarmpro.com, aimpoint.com and surefire.com. And to see more amazing work from Pro 2 Customs, visit the crew online at wepleadthe2nd.com.
WIN the Wasteland Wonder Pro 2 Custom Fabarm STF/12!
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Want more great content like the STF/12? Check out the February-March 2022 issue of Ballistic Magazine, on sale now at OutdoorGroupStore.com.