Gun Of The Week: Tokarev USA TT 12

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posted on May 24, 2024

In this "Gun Of The Week" episode, we’re on the range taking a closer look at an AR-style shotgun, the Tokarev TT 12. Watch above as we run through the details of this semi-automatic, 12-ga. shotgun.

The exclusive import partners for Tokarev Arms of Turkey, SDS Imports and Tokarev USA bring an assortment of semi-automatic and pump-action shotguns to U.S. shores. There’s even a bullpup configuration available, as well as differently colored examples in a variety of themes. But for this week’s feature, we’re delving into the TT 12, a gas-operated, semi-auto 12 gauge somewhat inspired by the AR-15.

Right side of the Tokarev USA TT 12 shotgun.

While the TT 12 may have a similar layout as the AR, its mechanics are wildly different. You do get the split receivers that separate much the same as Eugene Stoner’s legendary design, but parts interchangeability between the two is virtually nonexistent, aside from its grip and stock. But in terms of controls and handling, the TT 12 shares a lot with the AR.

With the TT 12, you get that AR-style, straight-line bore axis and operation that transfers directly to the shoulder through the stock, though, the stock is fixed and not adjustable for length of pull. The layout of the TT 12’s grip, safety, trigger and bolt hold-open levers were all inspired by America’s Rifle, too, and the controls are all bilateral. It is important to note, unlike the AR, the TT 12 features a reciprocating charging handle attached to the bolt, which is reversible from right to left.

The choked muzzle of the Tokarev USA TT 12's 18.5 inch barrel.

Just like the many of the modern ARs on the market, you’ll get a flattop receiver. Only, on this model, you get a molded-in Picatinny rail for optics. Tokarev includes a set of adjustable flip-up “irons” here, too, with the front sight attached to a small section of rail formed into the top of the handguard. Should you need to further accessorize, M-Lok slots adorn the gun as well. There are even QD sockets front and rear and slots for web-type slings molded into the buttstock.

Overall weight for the TT 12 comes to about 7.5 lbs., and it measures 37.75” from butt to muzzle. Included with it is an 18.5” barrel chambered for up to 3” 12-ga. shells. The smoothbore barrel comes threaded for Beretta Mobil-pattern chokes. Tokarev also includes three chokes with the gun; full, modified and cylinder bore. But the most salient feature of the TT 12 is the five- and 10-round T1919 detachable box magazines. As with any defense-oriented shotgun, how it feeds and loads makes the difference, and this design has proven effective.

A man aiming the Tokarev USA TT 12 shotgun downrange.

Our testers took the TT 12 to the range with a mix of 12-ga. shells and found its gas system handled all with confidence—it fed, fired and expelled shells flawlessly. It is important to note that while the TT 12 has a versatile gas-regulating system, excess gases are vented into the handguard, so for long range days, a shooting glove is preferred.

Also, despite the simplicity of the Stoner-inspired receiver halves and takedown pins, thoroughly cleaning the TT 12 is a bit more involved than simply popping the pins and separating the receiver halves. Following range time with the TT 12, American Rifleman staffers also noted its ease of use, thanks to the mirrored layout of the AR-15.

Tokarev USA TT 12 Specifications
Manufacturer: Tokarev Arms (Turkey)
Importer: Tokarev USA
Action Type: semi-automatic shotgun
Bore: 12 gauge
Receiver: steel, matte black
Barrel: steel; 18.5"; 3" chamber
Magazine: five-round detachable box
Stock: polymer
Sights: polymer; flip-up aperture rear, post front
Overall Length: 37.75"
Weight: 7 lbs., 8 ozs.
MSRP: $440

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