View Full Version : Best auto tactical shotgun...

February 8, 2001, 11:00 AM
I am in the market for a semi-automatic tactical shotgun. I currently own a Winchester Defender pump. It would mainly be used for home defense. For a good part of my natural life I have lusted after a Benelli M1, but after reading a few threads on another forum about their inherent unreliability, I have questioned that lust. If you have a favorite, tell me which one it is and why you would trust your familie's life with it.

February 8, 2001, 11:07 AM
Can't say as I have a favorite, but I will say that I didn't particularly like the Benelli M1. There's still a fair bit of recoil and I find the controls to be fiddly. If I'm going to go to an autoloader, I think I'll try the 1187, so as to reduce the recoil.


February 8, 2001, 11:34 AM
The 11-87 police with #4 buck is a great home defender. The Bennelli is inertia driven not gas like the 11-87P. Inertia translates to more recoil and the possibility of feeding problems similar to limp wristing a 1911. My vote is for the 11-87P!

February 8, 2001, 12:48 PM
I've NEVER heard them called "inherently unreliable" before.

I've had one for 8 years, never a hiccup with anything from cheap full power birdshot to slugs and buck from virtually all ammo makers.

I had a sidesaddle on it for a year with no problems, but took it off in favor of a buttcuff for reliability concerns after it was mentioned (actually heavily stressed) in a class. 11-87P would be superior in this department because of its steel receiver, but I've learned to work with the cuff.

I've added a 9 volt surefire dedicated foreend, no problems there. I've heard it affects slug POI, but it didn't on mine.

I took off the pistol grip in favor of a conventional stock to permit smoother transitions to pistol, and found it easier to manipulate the safety.

Lastly, I've heard they are finicky about low powered loads, but I always shoot full power stuff. I saw Brownell's carries low powered spring fits, but that seems like a hassle.

After using my Bennelli for the 8 or so years, it is not, in any way using any criteria, unreliable.

As proof, it is my housegun, and I DO trust my family's life with it every day.

February 8, 2001, 06:53 PM
OK, everybody get your torches lit!

My vote----the Mossy 9200a1 milspec. It eats EVERYTHING, and is cheaper than an 11-87 (although I lust after one of those!!). The Mossy is simple, reliable, and the safety is in a good location (top).

I have handled M1S90s that had problems cycling the reduced-recoil buck loads. Of course, that was with 14" barrels...

Last, I second the vote for #4Buck. Best buck load, but for HD, birdshot works just fine. I've seen the result of a shooting with #8birdshot at 7 yards....the ultimate weight loss program!!!!! ;D

February 8, 2001, 07:25 PM
I'll ring in with George on the Jungle Gun(9200A1). It has less recoil than(the memory of) the Benelli I used to have. It is omnivorous, and relatively compact. My quibble is that it does NOT have a free carrier(lifter). This slows down the reloading, or slug-select procedure. But, neither of those operations would be needed in a CQ HD situation anyway.:)

February 8, 2001, 07:42 PM
I have a Remington 11-87 SP and a Beretta 1201 FP that I shoot competitively. Neither weapon has been unreliable, although the Remington favors heavier loads because it is a gas operated gun. Several of my shooting partners have Benellis and H&K's also. If you are worried about reliability, stick with your Rem 870 or Moss 500/590 guns. That way, instead of pulling the bolt back, you can cycle the slide. Point is, if you have a jam, or misfire, you need to know how to clear it. Even factory ammo won't go bang sometimes....

February 8, 2001, 09:01 PM
I have a Mossberg Jungle Gun (M-9200A1) and it is loaded with #4 buck with a screw in full choke tube.

Soldier of Fortune loved the gun and gave it an extremely favorable review.

The gun will feed anything and his built like a tank.

February 9, 2001, 09:11 AM
I'll second the Benelli vote, although the Beretta 1201FP gets a close second.

Per reliability of the Benelli with light loads -- since 1998 when I bought my M1, I have used nothing BUT light loads (all 2.75" birdshot and reduced recoil loads). No hangups whatsoever, even with a Surefire 617F weighing her down.

I've never used the Mossberg 9200 so I won't opine as to that gun.


February 9, 2001, 09:46 AM
Hey, I'm not saying that the M1 is unreliable but I am saying that inertia based designs can have some issues based on the technology. IMO gas is better. It's no coincidence that the M4, the future choice of the USMC, is gas regulated. Anything that can affect the inertia can affect cycling!

check out

and search for benelli. There's an interesting post about the benelli lifespan and side saddles and cycling.

looking for cover at this time....

February 11, 2001, 02:28 PM
Nothing unreliable about my Benelli M1 S90 Field. It doubles as a house/grizzly defense gun. As a wilderness defense weapon exposed to weather extremes, I feel better about using a recoil-operated system than I would a gas-operated system. Recoil is only an issue at the range. The real whack is in the wallet when you buy one!
Good Shooting, CoyDog

February 12, 2001, 12:25 AM
You can't argue with a happy customer, but I have seen enough Benellis that don't work well to make me sour on them. An unmentioned SWAT team I deal with even had a drill they practiced with their M1 S90s. Fire one shot and go for the sidearm. They figured that's all they could depend on with their Benellis. They have since gone to 870s and are very happy.

You pays your money and takes your chances, but if your life may depend on it, I would want to make sure that it's going to work when you need it.

February 12, 2001, 03:25 PM

This is a lousy picture..

The gun will eat any ammo and is 100% reliable.

My Dad's Super 90 kicks like a horse and will choke on anything that isn't a maximum charge.

February 12, 2001, 06:34 PM
I've shot a case of shotshells at a time with my Benelli M1 Tactical, and never had any cycling problems as long as I stay with loads 3dr 1 1/8oz or higher. As long as you use full (not reduced) power loads you won't have any problems. If you want to use reduced power loads, just get a lighter spring from Wolff.

February 13, 2001, 12:21 AM
I just went trough a case of federal reduced tactical slugs, and all ejected perfectly, 1 oz. birdshot is also OK, I think you guys have different shotguns or something because that doesn't sound like any benelli I know of.

Al Thompson
February 13, 2001, 08:21 AM
I've seen a couple of Benelli's that choked on the Wally World cheap stuff. None that had any problems with better quality loads.

FWIW, I think that the Benelli series is one of the best. I had two but sold both due to tactical considerations and my inability to retrain myself on their systems. Have no qualms about reccommending one for a dedicated HD SG.


February 13, 2001, 11:19 AM
Once again, I will add my $0.02 and say that owning both a Benelli M3S90 and a Remington 11-87P, my choice is my 11-87P . I like them both and think they are both great SG's, I just choose my 11-87P over the Benelli which is over reated IMHO.

There was in interesting thread over ont he Tactical Forums about this where people with lots of differetn backgrounds talk about this same question. Take a look here:

An important thing to notice is not the quote about slamming the reciever against a door frame but the one about the Louis Awerbuck class. Much the same thing is mentioned in another SG thread over on the 1911 board:


February 13, 2001, 12:45 PM
I own a Rem 11-87 and a Moss 9200. I use these for hunting, varmit control and target, not for home defense, I have a short barreled pump for that. Both autos have been through several hundred handloads of birdshot, buckshot and slugs. The remington has never, not once, jammed or failed to feed. The 9200 often fails to feed when the action gets dirty, which happens about every 150 rounds. I like the 9200 very much, it's just more sensitive than my 11-87. This may not be the case with the jungle gun 9200 though as there are a few internal differences. Whatever you buy shoot it a lot and learn it's sensitivities before you trust it as a HD gun.

Lonnie Jaycox
February 13, 2001, 09:21 PM
I had a 1201 FP which was a fine handling and good shooting gun. I sold it to my brother because I am left handed and I cannot operate right handed semi's properly (I did not want to leave a round in the chamber so the charging lever was clumsy for me)--so I happen to be going back to a pump--I cannot imagine a situation where I would have time to pick the gun up and not have time to rack the slide. Another consideration for a HD weapon is the likelyhood that you be roused to it out of a sound sleep--the last thing you need then is a complex order of arms. The Benneli's and Beretta's are Police guns made to be opertated by fully awake on duty people (at least that is the idea :)) They are counter intuitive to operate. One other consideration is aimed rate of fire--a shotgun still should be aimed and the recoil from my 1201FP was enough that the aimed rate of fire was the same as a pump for me.

Arizona Fusilier
February 14, 2001, 02:47 AM
I have a Benelli M3; no hiccups to report here.

February 14, 2001, 07:17 AM
you are not going to find a smoother, more reliable, ergonomic, lightweight, durable semi auto SG than the Beretta 1201.
it is built by the same hands that the benelli in built by using the same bolt.
chrome bolt and chamber, mag tube cap takedown, 870 type saftey, full lenghth mag tube, rifle or ghost ring sights (trinium fronts optional).
mine has never malfunctioned and I shoot hundreds of low recoil LEO slugs and buck shot.
price was $425

February 14, 2001, 04:46 PM
Wow, $425 is a great price for a NIB Beretta 1201FP. Dealer cost is somewhere near $380 so you got a real steal. Buddy of mine got one for $459 NIB and I thought he did extremely well, seeing as normal price in my area is $550 and up.


February 18, 2001, 08:42 PM
Has anyone experienced troubles with the M-9200A1 ?

Good post about the 870 being hte S&W Model 10 of Shotguns. They are good for what they are good for. Rugged, no maintainance, easy to use, easy to clear workhorse tools. But some of use want more ;)

February 18, 2001, 09:19 PM
There is a poster here who did have some trouble with his A1. Do a thread search for Jungle Gun, and you'll be able to find it.

As for me, I am now looking for another one, as I like it so much. That's the same plan I follow with my HGs, too. A back-up, if you will. My used 870 has some trouble feeding from the magazine, which I hope is a quick fix. And NO, I don't think it is representative of the 870s.:)

Dave McC
February 19, 2001, 12:24 PM
A mild disagreement, Nimrod....

An 870 can be used for any game, target or protective function there is, and do the job assigned well. They last incredibly long times, many are on their 3rd generation of owner and will be usable for several generations more.

There may be shotguns out there that are different, but there's none that are more(G)...

Vic, ya wanna talk about those feeding probs? I'm no gunsmith, but maybe I can help...

February 19, 2001, 06:10 PM
I do appreciate that, Dave. The shopkeeper where I purchased it is going to have his 'smith rectify it. No charge, as I bought it from him.:) I asked him to call with the charge for converting the lifter to an anti-jamb(flex-tab?) style while he is at it. Do you know what a reasonable fee for that should be?

Dave McC
February 19, 2001, 08:19 PM
'Fraid not, Vic, I'm out of the loop these days. And, the smith that did mine was/is a friend.

Best guess, $50-75, but it is a guess.

One thing on the Flextab, when I had it done, it was this same smith/friend that recommended it. At that point, after thousands of rounds, I had never had the problem of losing a round behind the carrier. Proper technique....

March 29, 2007, 10:14 AM
I've had this gun for 10-12 years. 18" bbl w extended mag. I've put lots of cheap remmy heavy dove loads though it @ the sporting clay range, as well as slugs and buckshot from varios makers with not a single hiccup, and I don't clean it very often. This gun has the PG stock and wears a butt cuff. I have several other 12g shotguns, including an 18" 870 and an old A-5. I completely trust the reliabilty of the M1-my favorite shooter hands down :)

Smitty in CT
March 29, 2007, 10:23 AM
Mossberg has a new version of their 930


Not a lot of $$ and a great reliable gun.

The mag extensions for the 9200 Jungle Gun fit on the 930, too!!!

March 5, 2011, 05:43 PM
You couldn't give me a Mossberg anything, I owned 2 Model 500's
As the raven said "Nevermore, Nevermore"! Posted the long story on another forum, will copy and paste here, as Arnold said "I'll Be Back"

Ok I'm back, here is the other post;

You couldn't give me a brand new Mossberg, owened one years ago, actually two of them one was a 20 ga. Model 500 did not have it long, say about a day. I bought it a K-Mart took it to the range, loaded it up, and the carrier would not bring the shells up high enough to allow the bolt to push the shells into the chamber. It went back to K-Mart, and since they didn't have another to replace it they gave me my money back. The next one I purchased, a couple years later was also a Model 500, but this time in 12 ga. Had it for awhile until one day while at the range I guess I racked the slide a a little too hard, (is that possible with a shotgun)???????????? Hmmm!!!!! Never seemed to happen with my Winchester Model 1300 Defender,(still have it) and no I was not doing a verticial rack like you see in the movies. Well anyway back to what happened to the Mossberg, it jammed up tight with a live shell half way into the chamber. Could not move the slide forward or back, and since I didn't have any tools with me, I had take it home in that condition. At home I found out what the problem was, a Torsion Spring that had one of its legs fall out of place and jammed up the trigger mechanism. There was nothing there to hold that leg in place, no cut out, nothing but the tension. I was totally amazed at this design flaw. Oh lets not forget about that cheap POS tang safety that seems to be broken on just about every Mossberg I've seen that is not brand new.

March 5, 2011, 09:54 PM
You dug up a 10 year old thread about automatic shotguns to post about your bad experience with two pumps?

March 5, 2011, 10:31 PM
I don't know too much about shotguns but maybe the Saiga 12.

March 5, 2011, 10:32 PM
Wow, I didn't realise that I just tried to answer an 12 year old question.:D

March 6, 2011, 05:16 AM
I was looking for something else when I just happen to stumble upon it, wasn't paying attention to the date, just the subject. I don't know why everybody gets weirded out about posting on an old thread. People still read them, I did, and SO DID YOU!!
Just because a thread is old, doesn't mean you can't pick up valuable info from it. And if me posting a bad experience on an old thread, will save somebody from making a bad decision in the choice of a crappy firearm, then so be it, I will post all they way back to windows 95, or until a moderator closes it. So lets just say that a good majority of the people in these fourms, don't want to read old threads, then all I got say to them is, don't, and move on. I'll bet that I'm not the only that reads them. Now that I said my piece, HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY!:)