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Old November 18, 2002, 04:35 AM   #1
chaim
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Several shotgun questions- I'm really am trying to narrow down my options, honest.

OK, I'm probably still a month or two away but I need to start getting ideas.

I will be using a shotgun for home defense, apartment defense actually (I'll be moving in a couple months) and otherwise just for fun. I may start skeet and/or trap.

Should I get one gun (semi or pump) and multiple barrels or should I get two or more guns? Is the only advantage to multiple guns v. one w/ multiple barrels if you are too lazy to constantly change the barrels? Are the advantages of a pump or semi or o/u so strong in some areas that don't overlap with the other guns that it really is better to get a dedicated HD gun and a dedicated range gun?

Should I get a pump or semi? I think I'd prefer a semi but the pump has some draw on me (not the least of which is the almost 50% price difference) and it seems that it would have a slight advantage for home defense (nearly 100% reliability v. good reliability- kinda like revolver v. auto in pistols, I'm a revolver guy for HD). For range use the semi seems to have a definate advantage- less recoil, faster cycling of the next round.

I've been leaning towards (as some of you may remember) a Remington if I go semi, a Remington 870 in pump and possibly a Lanber O/U soon thereafter (so the semi for a range gun may not be as big an issue). I had a Mossberg 500 that I liked but the Remington just seems more substantial, though the Mossy's safety is better positioned. I may consider the Mossberg. Any other suggestions? One necessary criteria for a semi or pump (unless I get dedicated range and HD guns) would be the availability of a 18" or 20" barrel as well as the more common barrel lengths (available directly from the manufacturer by special order would be ok). I'd consider Charles Daly for instance, or a Lanber semi if I could get a HD barrel. I also like the option of rifle sights on the HD barrel. I know that Remington makes them like that standard for the short barrels and you can get Mossberg barrels like that (though the standard 20" 500 barrel doesn't have them).
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Old November 18, 2002, 05:07 AM   #2
Dave McC
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The short version:

Get one of the Express combos that does not have a rifled bbl and have at it.

Or, contact Valley Gun Shop(410-668-2171) and get a PD turnin, adding an aftermarket Remchoked bbl as money allows.

Shoot trap, skeet, and 5 stand at PGC. When this palls, shoot with the black BDU guys down at Fort Meade.

A month or six later,you'll be proficient without having to sell a kidney.

HTH....
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Old November 18, 2002, 07:15 AM   #3
Al Thompson
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I'd go with two guns if budget is not a problem. The police trade-in and a barrel gives you a classic combo that is with-in a few bucks of an express combo with with a better gun for the money.

Wild card - just get an 870 with a 26 inch barrel and Remchokes. Frankly, an additional 8 inches of barrel won't make or break a HD shotgun. I've run some drills here in my house and there is not as much difference as you would think.
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Old November 18, 2002, 03:53 PM   #4
chaim
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Quote:
I'd go with two guns if budget is not a problem.
My budget isn't very big (right now it is virtually non-existant). However, getting one gun (starting with the HD gun most likely) first and the second in a few months is an option. If I really wanted to get started with trap/skeet before then I could always invest the $100 or so for a second barrel after all.
Quote:
Wild card - just get an 870 with a 26 inch barrel and Remchokes. Frankly, an additional 8 inches of barrel won't make or break a HD shotgun.
That's an idea. How about an O/U Lanber with a 26" barrel as a home defense gun backed up with a .357mag revolver?
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Old November 18, 2002, 06:17 PM   #5
Matthew Courtney
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I bought a Remington 1100 at a Pawn shop for $175, cut the barrel to 19 inches, added a choate magazine extender for $30 and some new sights for $25. The 1100 is extremely reliable with quality shotshells if you clean it every now and then. Shotguns are cheapest at pawnshops in late spring/ early summer. Look around and do not be afraid to haggle on price. Put your money on the counter and you may find the pawnbroker will accept as little as 50-60% of the asking price. This is much more true after hunting season.
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Old November 18, 2002, 07:17 PM   #6
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For the budget-minded I would also cast my vote for a used pump.
My last 870 was 155.00. It was perfect for HD as I bought it.
I added some bits to it later, side-saddle, mag extension, 20" rifle-sighted barrel, but none of these things were really necessary for HD, IMHO.
The neat thing about 870's is that you can modifiy them in small doses as money & time permit. And you said it, rock solid reliable.
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Old November 18, 2002, 07:41 PM   #7
Matthew Courtney
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There is a myth about pumps being more reliable. Semi-autos are more reliable, especially if you are firing over a barricade or if you have one arm or hand injured early in the fray.
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Old November 18, 2002, 07:57 PM   #8
Edward429451
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I vote for an 870 Express with long barrel and get a 18" police barrel when you can. Side saddles and other stuff as you see fit. It aint no biggie to put the short barrel on for around the house and put the long barrel on before hunting or skeet.

Them guys that say the long barrel is nice for HD are right, you can certainly make due with the long tube (I did it for a long time). BUT...Now that I have the short barrel...It IS handier and nicer for inside the house HD. FWIW.

I owned an 11/87 and now own a 870 and honestly, I had more jams in the 870 (one) than in the 11/87 (none), so I thing its preference there. The one jam in the 870 was a short stroke by my BIL.
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Old November 18, 2002, 08:08 PM   #9
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I vote the Mossberg 500 combo

I bought one in 12gauge about a month ago at for $249. It came with a 24"rifled barrel kinda a downer cause sabot slugs are big bucks compaired to regular rifled slugs, and a 26" bird barrel with 2 chokes and a cable lock. It's chamberd for 2 3/4 and 3 inch. I love the gun.
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Old November 18, 2002, 10:17 PM   #10
Peter Gun
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Go combo!

I'm partial to the winchester 1300. Fastest cycling hands down. I think they have the best stocks, too. The Defender combo comes w/ a 26" rib barrell and an 18" defender barrel. barrels change in 20 seconds. cost is about $325 I think.
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Old November 19, 2002, 01:32 AM   #11
chaim
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Quote:
The one jam in the 870 was a short stroke by my BIL.
I heard of short stroke failures in shotguns before but I'm not sure how they could happen. When I had my Mossberg I found that if I kept my left hand firmly on the gun the recoil caused it to pretty much pump itself (or so it seemed, I don't really recall having to do much to finish the stroke).

Quote:
I'm partial to the winchester 1300
You know I haven't really thought much about a Winchester. I love their rifles so I guess it would make sense. However, you don't see nearly the number of accessories (such as additional barrels) for them around here as you do for the Rem 870 or Mossberg 500.
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Old November 19, 2002, 06:01 AM   #12
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OK here it goes:
IMHO
Get a pump action SG with short barrel for HD and fun shooting. Perhaps 20'' would do.
IF you like shooting then you can decide if you want another barrel or an entirely different SG ie a semi-auto. That is what I did. Now I have a pump "just in case" and a semi auto for trap and sceet

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Old November 19, 2002, 12:08 PM   #13
chaim
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Quote:
IF you like shooting...
I don't currently have a shotgun but I used to have a Mossberg 500. I sold it to Jody Hudson for financial reasons not because I didn't like it. I absolutely love shooting shotguns and I've only waited this long because I was stuck on handguns for a while. Because I owned and liked the Mossberg I'm considering it but I'm leaning against it for two reasons (neither anything against the Mossy or a shotgun). First, I'd hate to buy something I already had and sold-seems like too much of a waste of money. Second, I generally like the Remington better. The biggest advantages for me of the Mossberg are that I'm already familiar with it and the safety is better positioned (both important for a HD gun).

So, to summarize my long winded reply, I already know I'll like shooting shotguns.
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Old November 19, 2002, 03:51 PM   #14
9x19mm
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You can work your way up from a pump SG then The following are the first that come to mind, in no particular order:

Benelli Nova (ok, my favorite)
Remington 870 (most people here swear by them)
Mossberg 500 (an all time classic)
Winchester 1300 (you cant go wrong there either)

I also have an Antonio Zoli pump which is a copy (a damn good one) of the Fabarm pump

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Old November 20, 2002, 02:48 AM   #15
chaim
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Hmm, the Winchester may be interesting. I haven't really thought about it. They are one of the biggies when it comes to rifles and I really do like their rifles. However, I don't hear nearly as much about them as Remington and Mossberg and more people and police depts seem to own Remingtons and Mossbergs. I also don't see them as much at the store.

Is there any reason that they don't seem to be as popular? Is Winchester shotgun quality not up to the level of their rifles? Is it just that the company knows that rifles are its bread and butter and they don't put the support (advertising and accessories) into their shotguns as the others?

Can you get replacement barrels of various sizes fairly easily? I've never seen them so I guess I'd have to order from the manufacturer if possible.

How do they compare to the Mossberg and Remington?

In other words- talk me into it, I'm open to owning a Winchester but I have to be convinced.
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Old November 20, 2002, 05:50 AM   #16
9x19mm
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I cannot talk you into a Winchester because I never had one! I understand the company is closely related to Browning now. They are considered to be fine all purpose SGs, although not as pupular as other brands (at least where I live). Mind you, I would be glad to own one. Do a search here in TFL.
It seems that some manufacturers compromise quality these days. I do not know if this holds true for Winchester.

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Old November 20, 2002, 07:39 PM   #17
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I've owned a Winchester 1300, currently own a Mossberg 500, and have shot the remington 870 fairly extensively.
I prefer pump shotguns for their lighter weight, cheaper cost, better reliability with reloads and a wide range of ammo, and their cheaper convertability for different tasks.
Now-why I own a Mossberg. Economics. For me to get a Mossberg to do all that I need a shotgun to do, I made the following purchases: a $55 cylinder bore 18.5" riot barrel, and a $119 rifled barrel with sights for deer hunting. I also purchased a $20 Mossberg steel shot choke tube for waterfowl hunting. Combined with the orginial 28" barrel, this combo does everything a shotgun will ever need to do for me. This is the only shotgun I own, and consequently I shoot it better than any individual rifle of the many that I own. If you're on a limited budget, you pay from $55-$120 per barrel vs $150+ for the Winchester or the Remington.
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Old November 20, 2002, 08:54 PM   #18
Edward429451
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I think Winchester shotguns are as solid as they come. I and my 2 brothers got a new one (1200) when young and we used and abused it. I don't recall that gun ever malfunctioning in any way. It hung around and was passed around for many years but is gone now.
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Old November 20, 2002, 10:12 PM   #19
9mmMike
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I have heard nothing but good things about the Winchesters, especially the 1300's.
The advantage of the Mossy's and 870's, IMHO, is the plethora of parts, old and new, that are available. They've made and sold many of these things that parts are everywhere and, by careful shopping, good deals abound.
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Old November 21, 2002, 12:21 AM   #20
Bruce626
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chiam...

Here's a quote from my post last Oct about my familiarity with M500 and instant success with an borrowed 870...

That's what amazed me... here I'm shooting this totally unknown (to me) borrowed 870 and it simply does what I think it should do. I'm very comfortable with my Mossy500 and with several thousand rounds thru it I think that if I don't know it, I'm at least acquainted with it, but shooting WELL with an completely strange borrowed 870 is, in my view, a tribute to the predictability or naturalness of the well set-up, ghost-ring equipped 870, probably due to the Vang Comp treatment it got.
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Old January 4, 2005, 01:28 PM   #21
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I would proably go with the durablity of the nova then you can do what you want with it.
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Old January 4, 2005, 04:37 PM   #22
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Im surprized no one mentioned them but I've liked the two Browning BPS' I've owned... untill I got my 870 and I fell in love
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