“AKITA” Adjustable Hunting Stock
Advanced Technology International
2733 West Carmen Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53209
"The AKITA Adjustable Hunting Stock adjusts in four positions from 12-3/8” to 14-3/8” with one easy push of a button...and fits the 12 and 20 gauge Remington 870, Maverick 88, Winchester 1200/1300 and Mossberg 500/590 models."
Fitting a shotgun's length of pull to a shooter who does not fit the "average American male" profile in height and arm length can be a perplexing chore. If a shooter could, without the aid of a professional gun fitter, adjust his/her stock in both length of pull and comb height, that would be a real advantage.
If it would be possible to periodically change those adjustments, that would be an even greater advantage. That was the goal of the designers at ATI with the introduction of their new AKITA Adjustable Hunting Stock (AKITA).
That was their goal, did they achieve it? To find out I ordered one and put it through an extensive series of tests to evaluate not only fit and versatility but also ease of installation and use.
The AKITA arrived in a package that contained the stock, forend, various adapters, 3 stock bolts with washers and installation instructions.
My goal, as always, is to read the installation instructions, follow them literally and see how everything comes together. Since folks who order this stock will have varying levels of experience, this seems to be a fair way to evaluate the instructions.
I read through the instructions completely prior to any action. Since the AKITA is designed to fit 3 different makes of guns, I had to decide upon which one I wanted to try. There are several millions of Remington 870 shotguns out there, so I picked one of those in 12 gauge.
The first several steps of the instructions deal with removal of the current stock and illustrate which adapter is necessary for each gun that the AKITA is designed to fit, all were pretty straight forward.
Since my initial installation, the instructions have been available on YouTube and I've found these to be very helpful.
Okay, I have the stock and forend installed now, how does it work?
I was most interested in making sure that each position of adjustment would hold under fire. My examination of its construction, prior to and during installation, appeared to support its integrity but there's just no substitute for trying it.
When you adjust the stock length by depressing and then releasing the adjustment lever, there's a very reassuring "click" that you can hear and you can also feel everything go into place.
I loaded the 12 gauge 870 with 3" magnum turkey shells and fired them off as quickly as I could in the most extended position. I repeated this exercise in all positions and found that each adjustment held, just as it should.
My next step was to try adjusting height and position of the built-in "adjustable comb" of the AKITA. This is easily done by removing a screw cover on each side of the comb, loosening the set screws, sliding the comb to the desired position and then raising or lowering it. After you have it in the desired position, tighten the screws and replace the covers.
That slightly raised comb put my eye in the proper position to view my scope. I found the neoprene cover on the raised comb to be very comfortable as I fired 3 more 3" magnum turkey loads through the 870.
Since writing my initial review several months ago, ATI has changed the recoil pad on the AKITA to a new, much softer and better fitting pad called the Scorpion. It not only helps with recoil reduction but seems to help reduce or even prevent muzzle jump.
The ATI AKITA fills a real need for many shooters. It can allow a single gun to be used by shooters of various builds and ages. It can also allow a gun to grow with a shooter or to be adjusted when more or less clothing is worn in the various seasons of the year.
The real test has been with my wife Doris. She's a competitive shooter with 2 World Championships and a World Record to her credit. Doris is about 5' 5" tall and being a woman, does not fit the "average American male shooter" profile. Her gun stocks must always be specially fitted with the length of pull reduced several inches.
For any of you who've ever had that done, you know it can present some real problems. As the stock is shortened, the area of the butt is reduced, causing all kinds of problems with recoil pad fitting and reducing the area for recoil "distribution".
The AKITA solved the problem of length of pull quickly and easily and since the area of the recoil pad remains the same it helps to distribute the force of the recoil to a much larger area.
Doris tried the 4 available lengths of pull with the AKITA and it turned out that the 12-3/8" measurement was perfect for her. It was the same as the stocks on her guns that had been cut to length and allowed the full sized Scorpion pad to help with recoil reduction and muzzle jump.
She can now shoot any gun with the AKITA stock and I can as well. That's a real advantage to us as a shooting team!
I can certainly recommend the AKITA Adjustable Hunting Stock from ATI. It adds real value to your gun, can allow multiple shooters to use the same shotgun comfortably, will allow a gun to "grow" with a young shooter and will also let you adjust the length of pull when you add more clothing in cool weather or wear a thinner shirt in warm weather.
Since my initial review, we have equipped several of our competition and hunting guns with the AKITA stocks. We have shot hundreds of full power turkey loads with our various 12 gauge and 20 gauge guns with these stocks and have found them to work flawlessly.
Since the length of pull and comb height are adjustable, we’ve also been able to lend our guns to other shooters to try. We never have to worry about a gun fitting improperly and hurting the shooter.
Lastly, Doris used her AKITA equipped Remington 870 in competition in 2010 and capped off the year by winning the Women’s World Championship in still target shooting in October.
For more information on this product, you may visit the above listed web site and for more "Product Tests" please visit http://www.allaboutshooting.com
*I updated this article to reflect our experience of shooting the AKITA stocks for over a year. Since my initial article ATI also introduced the Scorpion recoil pad as standard equipment on the stock.