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Old September 30, 2009, 09:30 PM   #1
musicmatty
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New to this forum with a New/old purchase

I was in the market for a Home defense shotgun to add to my small collection and just when I was ready to drop down on a new Rem tact defense shotgun for about $5oo, ..I found something else. Over in the corner was a great looking used Winchester model 120 Ranger.

The 120 seemed to be even lighter than the Remington..seemed to be or very close in weight...also, the 120 had the smoothest pump action of all the pumps in the store..but I am sure that may be, because it is used. For $295. bucs ..not a bad deal and it came with a Deer slug smooth bore barrel with rifle sights. I understand that only 5000 of these were made between 1986 and 1989.

I realize that it's not an 18 inch barrel and only holds 4 in the tube, but it sure looks nice next to my model 94 Ranger that I bought new in 1988 or 89?? Any thoughts or experience with this Model 120 would be appreciated !

Thanks
Matt S.
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Old September 30, 2009, 10:46 PM   #2
Dave McC
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Same gun more or less as the 1200.

Decent gun. The throat of the mag tube, IIRC, is plastic and some need replacement. Brownells has parts.

The 1200 and 1300 are very slick shuckers. Lots of happy owners.

Enjoy....
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Old October 1, 2009, 07:02 AM   #3
musicmatty
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thanks for the reply....Im am not sure that I am clear on what is 'plastic' in the throat of the mag tube? What should I look for that would be defective?

Thanks
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Old October 1, 2009, 09:19 AM   #4
Lee Lapin
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Matt,

Welcome aboard!

The post-Model 12 Winchester pumps are good designs, but just seem not to hold up to hard use/abuse the way some older designs usually do. They are slick shuckers though, about the only thing slicker is the High Standard Flite King and its derivatives (Sears/JC Higgins Model 20, Armscor/Rock Island Armory pump). And they are light- sometimes TOO light. I just bought a Winchester 1300 slug gun (22" smoothbore barrel w. rifle sights) in near new condition for $150 from someone who was tired of having his teeth loosened from recoil, trying to shoot full ticket slugs out of it. Keep in mind, prices on used guns vary with the region of the country and with circumstances.

The plastic magazine tube 'throats' in newer model Winchester pumpguns can get brittle with age, or more often, with exposure to harsh cleaning chemicals. See http://www.urban-armory.com/diagrams/win1200.htm , parts 42102 and 40102 to get an idea where they are in the gun. The 'throats' work in conjunction with the shell latches to control feeding from the magazine, if they get worn or broken, they can cause jams.

Overall length (OAL) on the new-to-me 1300 slug gun (22" barrel, 14" LOP stock) is 42.5". On my 21" VR RemChoke barrel 870 Express Turkey Gun racked next to it, OAL is 40.25" (shortened 13" LOP stock). And with my current favorite 'house gun' 870, OAL is a tiny fraction over 37" (18" factory Police barrel, 12.5" LOP stock). It doesn't seem as if 5.5" overall is much of a handicap to me.

I'd suggest you get some Fiocchi reduced recoil buckshot for it, and shoot reduced recoil slugs out of it too. Otherwise it's likely to teach you a flinch you'll have trouble getting over. I'd make sure the stock fits well- many factory stocks are just too long for most shooters. A premium recoil pad (KickEez, LimbSaver etc) can make a lot of difference in felt recoil.

Enjoy it, shoot it a lot, and stay safe-

lpl
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Last edited by Lee Lapin; October 1, 2009 at 10:12 AM.
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Old October 1, 2009, 09:49 AM   #5
musicmatty
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I noticed that the box of slugs I bought, said..'reduced recoil'. The stock seems to fit me fine..raises up very easily and holds very steady.

Im not sure what the length of the 'Deer slug' barrel is, that is on it...I should measure it...I don't believe it is 28 inches.

Thanks ..and I will be safe for sure.
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Old October 1, 2009, 07:40 PM   #6
gyvel
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In the mid 80's, the store where I was smithing had a contract with Carnivale and Festivale cruise lines to supply and maintain approximately 75 shotguns which were used by passengers to shoot skeet while at sea. The guns were a mixed bag of Remington 870's and Winchester 1200's, and our store was Winchester warranty repair and Remington "recommended factory service." The rate of parts breakage and repair was somewhere around 10:1, Winchester vs. Remington.

The Winchesters just couldn't cut the mustard for continuous usage and the Remingtons took a lot more of a beating with a lot less problems.

My advice, based on that experience, is spend the extra money and get the Remington.
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Old October 1, 2009, 07:51 PM   #7
musicmatty
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Thanks for the tip..but I already made the purchase. All things considered, I doubt that this shotgun will be getting that much use as those on your Cruise line..some skeet and some bird hunting maybe..oh..and some home invasion persuasion not to try
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Old October 2, 2009, 01:03 PM   #8
Lee Lapin
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Matt,

Get yourself a copy of Louis Awerbuck's DVD and start working out that shotgun. Fighting with a shotgun is a different deal than shooting clays or birds, though anything that gets you trigger time is a help. I'm still waiting on the mail to deliver a copy of Gabe Suarez' shotgun video that I just ordered, so I don't know what it's like yet. I just got Clint Smith's Thunder Ranch shotgun video this week and while it is excellent, I still recommend Louis' for getting started with a fighting shotgun.

See http://www.paladin-press.com/product/40/25 for The Combat Shotgun.

And while you're at it, order yourself a copy of The Book if you don't have one yet. The link is http://www.paladin-press.com/product/772/27 , the book is Cooper's Principles of Personal Defense. It is THE essential guide to mindset, which is the primary aspect of self defense. Everyone who owns a gun for self defense should read this little book.

And no, I don't work for Paladin nor do I get any sort of recompense for suggesting their products. For decades now Paladin has been publishing works no other publisher would touch (like the ones I suggested here), and for that I am grateful. I think they deserve our business for that reason alone. I want them to be able to keep doing what they do. As a now retired reference librarian and a liberty-minded American, freedom of the press is very important to me. But freedom isn't free...

Stay Safe,

lpl
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Old October 2, 2009, 10:23 PM   #9
musicmatty
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Excelent..I will check out this info..this knowledge is good for everyone who has a family to protect.

Matt S.
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Old October 4, 2009, 06:03 PM   #10
musicmatty
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Needs some work

Took out my 'New/old' purchase today to try it out and it jammed more often than not. Just about every time I pulled the pump back to chamber a new round, it seemed like 2 shells would come out of the tube and get hung up and prevent the one from sliding up into the chamber.

So I am guessing that this is the 'Throats' that are discussed in the above post. I am not disapointed at all, this is a very nice gun for being at least 20 or 23 yrs old. Shot very accurately and felt good in the hands and when it didn't jam..it was quick and smooth. No rust or blemishes other than some fine wear on the wood stock that looks really good and seasoned.

I have a 90 day warranty with this gun, so I will take it back to the shop Monday and try to get this resolved..not a big deal Im sure.

If it is the 'Throats' in the tube, should I ask for better parts and expect to pay for the upgrades??

Thanks.

****************************************************************************************************
Update..

Gun is fixed and functioning properly. One of the 2 spring clips in the reciever area that holds one of the following shells from piggy backin out the tube with the one that is ready to be chambered, was not doing it's job because it was dirty.

Last edited by musicmatty; October 5, 2009 at 12:40 PM. Reason: Update
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