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Old April 16, 2006, 11:06 PM   #1
Randumbnoob
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Semi-Automatic Shotgun

I have searched online for conversion kits and I can not seem to find any. Is there anyway to convert a mossberg maverick 88 to semi-automatic? I realize that pump is more reliable. However, I would still like to ask if anyone knows how to do the conversion.

This is my first post and its nice to meet you all.
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Old April 16, 2006, 11:28 PM   #2
cntryboy1289
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not really

Welcome to the forum.

It is not really feasible without spending more than a new semi auto would cost.
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Old April 17, 2006, 01:45 AM   #3
Randumbnoob
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I thought that would be the answer. Oh well; one can wish.
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Old April 17, 2006, 09:23 PM   #4
Rivers
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Your assumption that a pump might be more reliable might be erroneous, depending on which semi-auto shotgun.

If pumps were really more reliable, Glocks would be pumps.
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Old April 17, 2006, 10:38 PM   #5
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???

remove pump shotgun from case.
place semiauto shotgun in case.
conversion somplete


The amount of design and fabrication work involved in converting your pump to a semiauto would exceed the cost of several semiauto guns. I don't mean the cost of several different guns at retail, I mean the cost of several guns purchased together! Converting your pump to recoil operation would involve just about building a whole new gun. (maybe you could reuse the buttstock)
Converting it to gas operation would be almost as bad.

best answer, buy another gun.

It is nowhere near as simple as it might seem. There have been designs that are pump/or semiauto at the user's choice, but they were designed from the ground up to do that. If the reason you asked is, you really like your pump, and wish it was semiauto, then I would suggest you try and find a semiauto that "feels" as close to your pump as you can. If you asked because you want to understand what would be involved, let me know, and we can discuss it further.

If ya don't ask, ya don't find the answers.
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Old April 18, 2006, 10:55 AM   #6
Unclenick
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For years the shotgun class instructors at Gunsite indicated preferrence for custom smoothed-up 870's. This was partly because of the perceived advantages of a pump in clearing a dud or a jam, which basically is the same operation as normally chambering a round. Also, shotgun shells, being blunt when loaded, are harder to make feed reliably in a semi-auto; this is for the same reason it is harder to make pistols feed full wadcutters reliably than it is to make them feed ball reliably. Even a Glock isn't typically expected to do that. Gunsite, like any school regularly teaching a particular type of weapon, has an advantage in evaluating the matter because they see hundreds of students go through applyiing different weapon variants to solve the same problems.

It's been awhile since I was out there, but I hear time has at least softened the view of semi-auto shotguns at the school. Semi-auto reliability has apparently been improved. Also, the shoot-offs at the end of each class were showing the semi-auto feed provides some shot-to-shot speed advantage. You may think that's obvious, but one may learn to operate a pump to have a fresh round in place about as fast as you can recover from recoil, so the difference is not nearly as great as you would assume. An expert is able to get about the same speed of aimed fire with both weapons over a short run. Nonetheless, it takes work and practice to get and keep that speed with the pump, and one week of training isn't enough for most students to get all the way there. And face it: most people just don't practice enough to stay in top form.

This leaves the clearing issue. A semi-auto is still more likely to have a feed faliure than a pump, and is therefore more likely to have to be cleared. You do have to let go with one of your hands to clear one, so clearing is a different, slower operation than operating a pump (maybe the pump-semi combination is the exception?). It therefore offers more opportunity for a weapon retention problem to develop, since it takes longer and it is easier to lose the weapon to an assailant while you have only one hand firmly gripping it. A sling may negate some of that disadvantage if you are slung up at the time you enter into the struggle. You have to weigh these potentials in your own mind as well as assessing realistically how much practice you are likely to undertake?

The bottom line is, if you can't purchase the weapon you want, getting the pump's action and trigger smoothed and getting in some speed practice with it isn't a bad choice either.

Nick
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Last edited by Unclenick; April 18, 2006 at 06:20 PM.
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Old April 18, 2006, 11:07 AM   #7
Jim Watson
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There were some studies that showed a pump was as likely if not liklier to be short-stroked under stress than an auto was to malfunction. This led the department to buy autos for the SWATters who could keep their guns clean and cased until needed and pumps for patrol where they would be exposed to dirt, vibration, abuse, and less practiced handling.

The main advantage of the pump shotgun is that it gives more foot-lbs per dollar than about any other firearm.
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Old April 18, 2006, 06:42 PM   #8
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I hadn't heard of the short-stroke study, but having watched students stress up and start fumbling guns and cartridges under match pressure, I can believe it. Keeping "muscle memory" trained so you short-circuit extraneous thought takes a lot of practice, and some never make it work. The old rule of thumb an olympic boxing coach wrote about was 6000 repetitions to establish muscle memory for one action component, such as slipping a right cross. I don't have a minimum practice figure for keeping that memory working, but I know a lot of competitors report trigger control starts to deteriorate if they go more than 2 weeks without at least dry fire practice. I would assume this is variable with years of experience, but in principle probably applies to working the pump, bolt, lever, or whatever manual action your gun may have, in addtion to working the trigger.

Nick
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