For Serious Gun Lovers

Stoeger Condor Review – Best Over And Under Shotgun?

Stoeger Condor Review - Best Over And Under Shotgun?

There are a few big names that always come up when people start discussing shotguns. A few of the more popular ones include Browning, Mossberg, and Winchester. But did you know that there are some lesser-known brands out there that can give you right around the same level of performance you get from your Browning A5 for half the price?

There are a few shotguns that, for the most part, go largely unnoticed as most entry-level firearms do after a while. And today, we are going to take a look at one of the more legendary of the bunch; the Stoeger Condor series.




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A Little Bit Of Stoeger Condor History

The Stoeger Condor is a type of double-barrel shotgun that is known as an “over and under” shotgun. This means that instead of having two barrels that sit next to each over horizontally, they are stacked vertically with one above the other.


skeet shooting stoeger condor


This design is what makes this style of the shotgun so popular as a practice shotgun with many skeet shooters who just need to have an occasional clay buster on hand. This is because the design lends to a much more accurate shot than its horizontally stacked siblings the Uplander and Longfowler. Those two models are geared more toward an evenly spread shot as they are made primarily for duck hunting trips.

Is the Stoeger Condor Competition Worthy?

Having said that, the Stoeger Condor is probably not a gun you will see being used very often in actual competition. It is an entry-level shotgun and it is simply more suited for occasional field use.

However, they have added a competition model to the line up.

Product NameWhere to Buy
image of Stoeger Condor CompetitionStoeger Condor CompetitionCheck Price
image of Stoeger Condor FieldStoeger Condor FieldCheck Price
image of Condor Field YouthCondor Field YouthCheck Price
image of Stoeger Condor SupremeStoeger Condor SupremeCheck Price

Stoeger Condor Competition


The Stoeger Condor Competition has an inertia-driven operating system


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What makes the Stoeger Condor Competition stand out is the adjustable comb that allow you to customize the shotgun to various shooting styles. The inertia-driven operating system makes it comfortable to shoot. It’s hard to beat the reliable performance. The trigger is crisp and responsive, providing a clean break with minimal take-up.

Even though Stoeger has a competition model, what generally happens is that as a shooter becomes more seasoned, they upgrade. As they start to find their preferred shooting style, they slowly begin to drift away from the firearm they started off with and eventually upgrade to something like a TriStar Hunter EX.

Stoeger Condor Build Quality

Known for its traditional design, complete with a wooden stock, the Stoeger Condor is built rather well for the price. The overall design of these shotguns is without a doubt what I consider far above-average for an entry-level shotgun.


stoeger condor 200 round


Stoeger Condor Stock

The stock is made from A-grade walnut which features some prominent and really neat looking mineral streaks. A good walnut wood is always very nice furniture to see added to a cost-effective shotgun right out of the factory. The stock is also finished in a satin coating that doesn’t feel like you are holding a cheap plastic bb gun but gives everything a nice but blunt shine.

Stoeger Condor Receiver

The receiver is completely blued and sports a highly polished finish. It machine-turned and features monobloc sides. The bead front sight, as well as the shell extractor ejectors, are made of brass.

Stoeger Condor Recoil Pads

The recoil pads featured on the Stoeger Condor are some of the most cushioned I have seen on any budget-friendly shotgun. You will need them too because this shotgun has a good deal of kick to it when you squeeze that trigger. Seriously surprised, and satisfied, with these recoil pads.

Both the 12 and 20 gauge versions of the standard Condor feature IC and M screw-in choke tubes to better shape the spread of your shot. The .410 version comes stock with fixed full chokes, however.

Stoeger Condor For Sale

You have a few choices when it comes time to buying a Stoeger Condor as there are several features that you can add on or otherwise change. From the factory, these choices include things such as the gauge of the barrel and various chokes:

Stoeger Condor Field


Stoeger Condor Field


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The Stoeger Condor Field is the perfect mix of elegance and affordability. It sports ventilated ribs, machine turned monobloc sides, shell extractor and a blued receiver with a high-polish finish.

Stoeger Condor Field Features:

  • 12 gauge with 28″ and 26″ barrels
  • 20 gauge with 26″ barrel
  • .410 with 26″ barrel
  • Length of pull:  14-1/2″
  • (12- and 20-gauge models have IC and M screw-in choke tubes, while the .410 has fixed full chokes. Features a single non-selective trigger. )

Condor Field Youth


stoeger condor youth shotgun


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The Stoeger Condor Youth is made for young or smaller shooters. It features a shorter length of pull. It is chambered for 20 gauge which give it less recoil for youth shooters. The 22 inch barrel also makes it easier for young shooters to maneuver.

Stoeger Condor Youth Features

  • 20 gauge with 22″ barrel and IC and M screw-in choke tubes
  • Length of pull: 13″
  • (Features a single non-selective trigger.)

What Does Length of Pull Mean?

Length of pull on a shotgun is the distance from the trigger to the shooter’s shoulder.

Stoeger Condor Chokes

Most of the 12 and 20 gauge Condor Models come with IC and M screw-in choke tubes. The 410 models have fixed full chokes. There are some after market choke tubes for the Stoeger Condor.  We like Carlson’s brand of choke tubes.

Carlson’s Choke Tubes


Carlson's Stoeger Condor Choke Tubes are perfect for shooters whose shot patterns need to be in a tighter grouping


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The Carlson’s 12 Gauge Choke Tubes for Sporting Clay are perfect for shooters whose shot patterns need to be in a tighter grouping. Each choke tube has the constriction laser marked on the end for easy reference.

Browning 725 Citori vs. Stoeger Condor

In regards to performance, I would put the Stoeger Condor series of shotguns on par with the likes of a Browning 725 Citori. There are a few major differences between the two obviously.


For starters, the Citori comes stock with a smooth FireLite trigger. The Stoeger Condor just features a single non-selective trigger, and it really isn’t that great. In my experience, the trigger on the Condor always has a bit too much “float” for my liking. I have also run into a few issues with it not wanting to fire the second barrel after some lengthy use.

While this simplistic single trigger design makes for an easy field-strip, it isn’t good for long-term use.


stoeger condor shotgun cleaning and lubing


Unfortunately, if you want a selective trigger that rarely faces any hang-ups, you would need to buy the Condor Supreme. The Condor Supreme features a selective trigger that allows you to switch up which barrel you are firing.

This comes in handy should your trigger stop firing either barrel. When that happens with a single selective trigger, your only recourse would be to send it into Stoeger for repair.

Another thing I really don’t care much for on this trigger is the fact that it is what is known as an inertia trigger.

What Does Inertia Trigger Mean?

Inertia trigger means that in order to fire the second barrel, you are relying on recoil to kick it over. If that doesn’t happen you may think you have got a hangfire situation or even a broken trigger on your hands.

If this happens, don’t freak out. Simply dry fire it once and then tap the buttstock on the floor. When you tap it on the floor, you should hear a small click which means you are good to go and should be able to fire it again.

The Stoeger Condor Supreme model is the only one that offers an auto-selector trigger design.   They are a rare find though. We have seen Stoeger Condor Supreme on .  Also:

Stoeger Condor Supreme


Stoeger Condor Supreme


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Reload Speed

The Stoeger Condor is about as traditional as traditional shotguns can get. This means that you may notice that the rate at which you are able to cycle through rounds is a good deal slower than usual. Especially when compared to a fast pump shotgun such as the Mossberg 500.

stoeger condor shotgun reloadingNonetheless, I have had no issues when it comes to reloading or firing speeds. As a matter of fact, due to the double-barrel design, it’s actually a fairly level playing field. Since you have the advantage of not having to tediously cycle through to your second barrel outside of simply pulling the trigger again, this buys you a little more time for things like reloading.

Practice, Practice

Often times, I can beat my buddies to the targets time and again with little effort during our practices sessions. While they are still reloading their pumps, I am smashing through clay like there is no tomorrow.

If you are a data freak like me, you can always pick up a chronograph to measure or compare your muzzle velocity and help you increase your reload speed. You can find some of our recommendations for the best shooting chronographs here.

Ultimately, I can reload and fire this just as quickly as I can reload and pop off a few rounds with my Benelli M4.


As I had mentioned previously, there are some solid benefits to this gun in regards to accuracy. Because of the design behind the stacked barrels, marksmanship seems to be something that gets better for most coming over from a shotgun with a horizontal stack.


stoeger condor shotgun at gun range


I will tell you though, this is more or less based on anecdotal evidence, at best. It isn’t that it necessary shoots any truer than its horizontal counterpart, it actually has to do with how easily the human eye adjusts to certain views. Since you do not have two barrels laid out in front of you, you have less to focus on and thereby can get a shot lined up not only more accurately, but also quicker.

The Stoeger Condor comes stock with a bead sight, but if you really want to take your accuracy game up a notch, you will need to equip a better sight. Check out our review of the best shotgun sights to get some ideas.

The Stoeger Condor – Final Verdict

If you are in need of a solidly built entry level over-and-under shotgun, you really need to get your hands on a Stoeger Condor. There are a lot of other shotguns in the same category that we recommend looking at as well. But none will come close to the level of quality that you will get from anything similar in the price range.

This shotgun is the perfect choice for a beginner skeet shooter or just as an inexpensive field gun that you can practice on.

If you own the Stoeger Condor, drop us a comment below and let us know what you like best about it, and where you think it could be improved! Maybe you know of a better entry-level over and under shotgun?

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10 Responses

  1. In shooting did you find the aim of the gun was to cover the target or float it on the front sight? Thanks Dave

  2. I bought the Condor for my 11year old for Christmas. Got it on sale for $350 at Dicks. Not a bad gun the money. As the author stated above, the accuracy of this gun is good. It’s heavy enough to absorb the recoil but not too heavy that he can’t swing it with ease. We got the 26” barrels and he loves it! 2 small issues….the extractors seem to get hung up on high brass loads especially on the bottom barrel and it makes it difficult to pull out the empties. As I pulled them out it left scratches on the sides of the brass. Low brass loads were not a problem. Came out with ease. The other issue was the safety kept kicking on after the first shot so my son couldn’t get off the 2nd without taking the safety off again. I don’t shoot so I can only review this based on my Sons feedback but he loves the gun. He says is comfortable and accurate and he’s ready to shoot again!! Although I am going to contact Stoeger about the safety. Over my 11 year old son, Hunter, gives it a 4 out of 5!!

  3. I would consider myself a beginner skeet shooter and this gun does just about everything I need it to. I have the 12ga and I would say the recoil is extremely manageable. Additionally the gun is easy to be accurate with and safe too because the safety automatically engages after opening and closing the action. One flaw I have noticed in addition to not having ejectors is that because you can only use the bottom barrel when shooting one round at a time the bottom firing pin wears down over time and using inexpensive ammo with harder primers such as estate or federal can provide an inconvenience as the firing pin is occasionally unable to properly strike the primer. As well the gun only comes with IC and M chokes that are flushed which is, in my opinion, unexciting but again this is a gun for beginners so you get what you pay for I suppose. Overall though this is a great starter/field gun and for the price you are likely not going to find anything better.

  4. My dad bought me a 20 gauge from a guy in church two decades ago. The stock is a little loose now but I will shoot it over his Ruger Red Label any day. Going out to the shooting clays course it isn’t uncommon to reliably shoot in the 40+/50. Compared to most other shotguns I’ve shot it feels incredibly natural pulling it up to my shoulder. I have had zero issues, not with firing, parts or anything. Strongly considering buying a new one if I don’t feel like dropping money on a Winchester 101. The Condor is reliable, true and will give you years of quality shooting.

    1. Thomas any chance you could answer Dave’s question above.

      In shooting did you find the aim of the gun was to cover the target or float it on the front sight?

      I have purchased the condor 28” 12gauge and it should be here Friday. Hopefully my experience with the gun is as good as your experience has been.

      Regards, John

  5. Great gun. Ran several thousand rounds thru it then it quit.
    It won’t reset the trigger. It breaks and ejects but won’t reset.

  6. Bought condor 12 over and under. Trigger return spring is way too soft , second barrel often doesn’t get reset , internals are poorly finished, need polishing components . Problems cause not one of my 4 sons desire to shoot this, I am stuck using it and 8 out 10 shots it’s fine.☹️

  7. I’ve been competing successfully with a Beretta A-303 in sporting for several years against seasoned O/U shooters locally. I’ve been looking at O/u’s but can’t seem to come to a decision on weather or not it will benefit my shooting style. I’m sure there is a reason related to reliability but some enlightening would surely be appreciated. Thanks, Lonny

  8. With respect to the upper barrel refusing to fire, I have come across the solution quite by accident. Originally, I assumed the trigger mechanism was somehow getting jammed between the first and second shots. A small experiment proved this not to be the case. Dry firing the gun several times, I never had any problems. But with it loaded, I was getting a dead round in the top barrel about half the time. This led me to the fact that the recoil of the first round was part of the issue.

    I noticed that the feel of the second trigger pull felt the same as if I forgot to release the safety switch. This made me try shooting one round, and checking the safety. I noticed sometimes the safety would reset after the first round. The switch had indeed become easy to slide backwards, but despite that, it never failed during dry fire. So I assumed it had to be that the recoil of the first round was resetting the safety switch. This was indeed the case.

    A short term workaround was simply holding the safety switch forward during a true pair, or verifying that it was still off between clays during a report round. Although this indeed worked, it was distracting enough to cause missed shots.

    I took the receiver apart and saw the problem. The metal rod that automatically resets the safety between loadings was bent. I removed it and replaced it with a small metal roll pin below the switch, but left out the part that automatically resets the safety. Now the safety works only by manual action. This makes the gun 100 percent reliable on the second shot, and also prevents missed shots due to forgetting to activate the safety each time you reload.

    I was concerned about the gun being less safe, but realized there is never a time when live rounds are left in the gun. You load it, shoot twice, and the gun is no longer loaded. Since I NEVER leave the gun loaded and unattended, I don’t feel the removal of this feature is unsafe as long as each user fires twice and removes the spent cartridges.

  9. I have the Stoeger condor competition I swapped it out for my browning and Benelli the scores at sporting clay shoot went up 10 I shoot 83 now I have shot over 2500 rounds have not had any issues or misfires some people have trouble with the upper barrelTo correct this problem select the upper barrel before you open your shotgun and it will shoot the top barrel first

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