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Shotguns, keep it simple or do it up?

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I love shotguns! I have two 870's a 590 and a Winchester field gun (I think the 1300?). Anyways, what do you like on your shotgun. I just finished converting one of my 870's back to the standard full length stock from a factory top folding police model. I put on a side saddle and the sure fire fore-end light. I had a mag extention on it before but decided to take it off just to cut down weight. Here is the question, do you like no frills no spills shotguns or exotic types?
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I think we had the same experience. I had a Mossy 500. Put a steel top folder, side saddle, flashlight on it. Not too bad so far. Then I traded my 18.5 barrel and tube for a 20" with 8 rnd tube. The stinking thing is so heavy now it needs wheels. Sure looks cool as heck though. Also did the same to an SKS. Just unloaded that mess this weekend. After I bought the AK that SKS looked sad.
 

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Hmmmmmm I wonder if my shottie is simple or done up.

It's an elderly Winchester Model 1200. I bought it long, long ago to hunt doves, quail, ducks, and other such critters. The Winchoke arrangement helped me cope with the variety.

Not terribly long ago, I had a 'smith cut the barrel down to 20 inches. I lost the Winchoke but gained a handy, maneuverable, cylinder bore clearer-of-living-rooms. Nothing else is done to it right now. So is bobbing the barrel enough to make it "done up"?


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If God didn't want us to own guns, why did He make the 1911?
 

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I thought about hanging all sorts of garbage on my Mossberg 500, but in the end I left it basically stock. It only has the following:

18.5" barrel
Composite forend
Slip-on recoil pad
4-round slip-on ammo holder

About the only thing I wish it had was ghost ring or rifle sights.
 

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Originally posted by bigbore:
It's the extra little things that matter :)
Hmmm, interesting.


Though i say plainer the better, prefer the look of an 870 or Benelli stock or else with surefire and that's about it. But, heck, if the weight and extra length doesn't get to you and you can wield it comfortably with a bayonet, laser range finder, IR-flood, 203, coffee machine and washing line all on the end, then why not?
 

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The most important thing one can do with one's shotgun is to spend the money and time to PATTERN it at typical self-defense ranges with the load(s) of one's choice.

This will show one just how small the pattern is at "across the room" ranges and thus how carefully the shotgun must be aimed. This may lead one to choose to upgrade the sighting hardware to something more than the simple bead. Ghost-ring aperture sights are all the rage, but good work can be done with the open, barrel-mounted "rifle" sights too.

An extended magazine is convenient too. One may keep the piece slightly downloaded (to ease stress on the magazine spring, make it less likely that the shells therein will "swell", and to leave a "dead space" to receive a slug in the event of a threat presenting itself at greater distance than may be handled with shot).

A weapon-mounted light can be a worthwhile addition. There are ways to use the shotgun along with a separate flashlight, but they are neither easy nor convenient. The weapon-mounted flashlight is no panacea either, as it obliges the user to "muzzle" whatever he wishes to illuminate. Give this choice some thought.

On-board ammo storage can be useful. Quality butt-cuffs and the clever Sidesaddle can be useful additions. I prefer the Sidesaddle, as it dusrupts the weapon's balance less.

A shotgun kept for home defense should not have a sling attached. The snag potential is just too high. Slings can be useful for some roles and are mandatory for range "class" use. A simple carry strap seems to work as well as any.

The issue stocks are fine. Folders should be avoided unless they are to address a specific storage need. I don't care for pistol-grip stocks, but YMMV. Leave the pistol-grip-ONLY setups, barrel heat shields, and other such junk to those that deserve them.

Simple doesn't mean "plain", but it does mean only adding things that offer an advantage.

Rosco
 

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Keep it simple. Ghost rings perhaps but I like the simple bead, nothing to hang up on clothes. No mag extension makes for a lighter faster handling weapon. 18 1/2 cylinder bore barrel. I do recommend going to synthetic stocks. They’re much tougher and longer lasting. I have read a lot about having smiths do reliability work on 870’s. I’m not against this but I can tell you that I have never ever even once heard of an 870 failing an officer out here in Ca. (Your actual mileage may differ)

Oh, yeah, I almost forgot. Never ever, yes, that means never, put those stupid "Police" folding stocks on your 870. When you slice your cheek from recoil, pinch or partially amputate a digit, or the folder fails on you, you will know what I am talking about.

[This message has been edited by Patrickl (edited 07-02-2001).]
 

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I love shotguns too. They are probably almost as high on my list as 1911's. So far my list is a Benelli Super 90 28" field, a Winchester model "97" built in 1911, a Remmington 11-87 Sporting Clays, and a Stoeger Condor over and under that I just purchased to see if I liked shooting over and unders as much as I like looking at them and for 300 dollars it's probably the best deal I've ever found. I've been looking at the Mossberg 590 A-1 speedfeed stock, Bayonet lug, 9 round tube and ghost ring sights. It seems to be a real good deal for home defense, I figure I'd just add a sure fire light and be done but it almost gets to be like having a 1911, I just like to "customize". For the time being I'll just keep usuing my old 97 for the "defense gun" plus my 1911
Regards SonnyD
 

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Originally posted by Rosco Benson:
The most important thing one can do with one's shotgun is to spend the money and time to PATTERN it at typical self-defense ranges with the load(s) of one's choice.

This will show one just how small the pattern is at "across the room" ranges and thus how carefully the shotgun must be aimed. This may lead one to choose to upgrade the sighting hardware to something more than the simple bead. Ghost-ring aperture sights are all the rage, but good work can be done with the open, barrel-mounted "rifle" sights too.

An extended magazine is convenient too. One may keep the piece slightly downloaded (to ease stress on the magazine spring, make it less likely that the shells therein will "swell", and to leave a "dead space" to receive a slug in the event of a threat presenting itself at greater distance than may be handled with shot).

A weapon-mounted light can be a worthwhile addition. There are ways to use the shotgun along with a separate flashlight, but they are neither easy nor convenient. The weapon-mounted flashlight is no panacea either, as it obliges the user to "muzzle" whatever he wishes to illuminate. Give this choice some thought.

On-board ammo storage can be useful. Quality butt-cuffs and the clever Sidesaddle can be useful additions. I prefer the Sidesaddle, as it dusrupts the weapon's balance less.

A shotgun kept for home defense should not have a sling attached. The snag potential is just too high. Slings can be useful for some roles and are mandatory for range "class" use. A simple carry strap seems to work as well as any.

The issue stocks are fine. Folders should be avoided unless they are to address a specific storage need. I don't care for pistol-grip stocks, but YMMV. Leave the pistol-grip-ONLY setups, barrel heat shields, and other such junk to those that deserve them.

Simple doesn't mean "plain", but it does mean only adding things that offer an advantage.

Rosco
Excellent advice! Patterning your shotgun is important. It would be a good idea to pattern with both shot and buckshot. Also practice recoil control for follow up shots. Another thing to think about is getting a short buttstock. I think the Speedfeed short stock is about 12 3/4 inch length of pull. A factory length stock can catch on coats, shirts or skin.
 

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Preferred: Double (side-by-side), hammerless with auto-ejectors, double trigger, 18 inch barrels. Matt painted wood, parkerized metal. Gold bead from sight - maybe "express style" rear if I had the money to spend.

Pump: Regular buttstock (synthetic or wood painted matt gray or olive drab) - length of pull a little on the short side (Don't like pistolgrips or folding stocks). Barrel 18 inches, extended mag, all metal parkerized, Express style rearsight with gold bead up front. MAYBE a SureFire light attachment.

12 or 20-gauge. Shells: 0, 00, or 000 Buck, Foster slugs if over-penetration is considered a factor - Brenneke if it isn't.
 

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I say go wild!

Benelli M1 Super 90 "PRACTICAL" 12-shot 12-gauge!
Comp choke, ported bbl, ghostrings, wheeeeeeeeee!

I can empty it in less than 3 seconds, accurately on steel poppers. For fun, of course



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