View Full Version : Newbie buyer looking for a type

December 16, 2000, 02:54 AM
I'm a newbie when it comes to shotguns. I've fired a Mossberg (?) and I think that it would come in VERY handy should a bad guy come through my window.

Anyhow... I was just wondering if any of you knowledgeable people could tell me a reliable model for a good price, you know like Glocks.

I don't want to go to Big 5 or some other chain store and get ripped off 'cause I didn't know what I was looking for.


Dave McC
December 16, 2000, 12:26 PM
The industry standard is the Remington 870, tho there are plenty of other choices almost as good.

However, the only folks I know or taught that moved past bare minimum competency with a shotgun are those that LIKED to shoot shotguns recreationally and practiced frequently.

And, skip the chain stores and get one, possibly used, from a gunshop where not only your questions can be answered, but where a qualified person can assist you, instead of someone who barely knows which end is which.

If an 870 has ever worn out, I haven't heard about it. But then, I'm only 54 and been shooting 870s only since about 1958.

December 16, 2000, 07:52 PM
I came to this forum as a newbie six months ago. Since then, guided by advice and information received here, I have purchased 3 guns: a new 870 deer gun, a used Ruger KGP 141, and a used 870 Police Magnum. I am 100 percent satisfied with all three, but if I could only keep one of them, it would be the used 870 Police Magnum.

Bam Bam
December 16, 2000, 10:29 PM
Be sure to get a new one with interchangable chokes. These have barrels made to handle steel shot. The way things are going steel shot may legislated within the lifetime of your scattergun.

Vern Brink
December 17, 2000, 02:13 AM
Buy a used 870 and if necessary, send it to Wilson Combat for refurbishing. The listed items are from their website - cost $170.

Replace all worn and/or damaged parts

Convert to 3"

Convert shell feed to flexitab anti-jam system

Shorten barrel (if requested) to 12.5", 14" or 18" and install new front sight base and bead (NFA Laws Apply)

Install new spring and follower

Install new synthetic butt stock and foregrip

Replace safety with current design

Strip and parkerize all external parts

Strip and polymer coat trigger group

Dave McC
December 17, 2000, 10:00 AM
Bam-Bam, any 870 with a Modified or more open choke will handle steel just fine. In fact, I fired some early steel through a full choke w/o either harming the 870 or me.

I like tubes for versatility, but a mission dedicated fixed choke shotgun with the right choke for the job is a good choice too. In this case, anything more open than Extra Full will work. At HD ranges, choke is a moot point.

As for nonlead shot, steel's a bad choice. No pellet deformation means mo' penetration. No good other choices, Bismuth is quite costly and big pellets sometimes fragment pre impact, so flyers go off anywhere. Tungsten iron is tougher, but not cheaper.

December 18, 2000, 01:05 PM
A pump action shotgun is an excellent home defense weapon. I would avoid buying a used shotgun if you don't really know what your looking for. You should be able to pick up a new shotgun for 200-300. For your purposes, I would stick with a 12 gauge rather than a 20. The 870 is excellent as is the Winchester 1300. The Mossberg 500 is probably a little cheaper than the others. Check out the thread entitled pump shotguns from the other day (I think the author was .44)where people give a variety of opinions on these. I don't have a problem buying from WalMart or K-Mart, you can usually get the same model from these stores at a cheaper price than you can get them at most gun shops. Even if its not in stock they will order it for you. I don't know if you have a Dick's Sporting Goods store where you live (they are all over the east coast), but this is a chain with an excellent variety in stock, but they almost always charge more than anyone else for their guns. The one advantage to buying at a gun store versus a K-Mart or WalMart is that they will probably give it an initial cleaning and oil the action for you rather than doing it yourself.