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Old August 10, 2001, 04:02 AM   #1
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Join Date: November 24, 2000
Location: Aridzona
Posts: 257

I had a little e-mail exchange with Dave McC and I thing we agree on more things then we disagree, but I have a few comments that I would like to make.

If everyone wanted the same thing, there would be only one thing. We all have our opinions on what should or shouldn't be on a firearm. I am often asked if ports have any value on a tactical shotgun. My response is that it's a personal matter, however, we sell ported over non-ported 20 to 1. Is it just a gimmick? Well, we have never had a complaint or a gun returned because the customer didn't like the ports.

It's true that a large and/or well trained shotgun shooter may not need or want a ported shotgun, but a smaller person may find the combination of long forcing cone, back-boring and ports a necessity. It has been found that certain small statured recruits in a certain federal LE agency could not qualify with the shotgun even with reduced recoil loads. They were given an 870 with the Vang Comp System and they all qualified 100%. I could be lying. Take it for what it's worth.

You can take a nice 870 and add a sidesaddle, 2 shot extension, fore-end light, magazine stock, ghost-ring sights, laser, Aimpoint type scope and maybe even a stereo system. None of this stuff will add much to the utility of a shotgun, but people want this stuff and are willing to pay for it and their opinion carries the same weight as yours or mine. So there!

The fact is that many professional LE agencies have gone to the Vang Comp System and ghost-ring sights and other goodies. They train with them and seem to be pretty happy with the results, but hey!, what do they know?

Beep! Beep! Beep! Rant mode off.
Experience is what you get when you were expecting something else.
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Old August 10, 2001, 05:13 AM   #2
Al Thompson
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Join Date: May 2, 1999
Location: South Carolina
Posts: 3,611
Well, there are a couple of things to consider here.

I suspect any time we look to an agency (any flavor) for guidence on equipment, we are making a heck of an assumption that the powers that be in said agency have a clue. My experiance over the last 22 years is that most do not.

Additionally, about 98% of all Americans (IMHO) are gadget freaks. It must be something in our collective national make-up that drives us that way as we are constantly seeking a hardware solution to software problems.

Most LE, military or gunshop commando choices may or may not be appropriate for you or I. The key in my opinion is to analize your mission, enemy, time, troops and terrain then decide on which hardware helps you solve the problem.

And as we gain more experiance, our choices may change. I started with a bead sighted non-ported riot gun for HD, evolved to the gadget laden Benelli M1S90 and have now worked my way back to a bead sighted non-ported riot gun for HD. Circular motion is devine....

The Vang system may indeed be a better mousetrap (tactical/reduced recoil buckshot sure is) and worthy of praise. What each of us as individuals have to decide is if that expenditure of funds would be best spent there or on a case or two of ammo and some range time...

If we all agreed on everything this board would be very boring.

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Old August 10, 2001, 08:23 AM   #3
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Join Date: May 31, 2000
Posts: 1,127
The trouble starts when gunwriters and other self-appointed experts imply that unless a gun has all the doodads ever created it just isn't the best choice for whatever. It's marketing pure and simple.

Offered as evidence is the case of the hapless shooters who were failing miserably until handed the gun done over by the mystical guru whose shop is hidden well above the clouds on a secluded mountain top. The skies cleared, the scores rose and peace rolled over the happy valley. Those who didn't use the master's choice were condemned to a life of hopeless inadequacy.

Our mythology wants us to believe that the magic sword exists. But in the real world buying any accessory that results in fewer rounds fired in practice is money not well spent. I know people with all the gizmos who can't shoot worth a hoot and others who put their money into ammo and practice who are regularly in the winner's circle.
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Old August 10, 2001, 11:56 AM   #4
Dave McC
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Join Date: October 13, 1999
Location: Columbia, Md, USA
Posts: 8,812
Opinions are like,uh, navels, everybody has one.

Here's some of mine....

Having taught a few hundred folks to shoot shotguns, I might know a coupla things about the process of learning this effective but demanding tool.

Let me say here that the feathermerchants mentioned by DML are probably not using those tweaked shotguns on post, and are near certainly inadequate with the standard weapon. Some LEO only matches specify unaltered duty weapons for just this reason. I won a few trophies with an issue 18" bbled riot 870, and more with my tweaked but non ported personal 870 that now serves for HD. Scores were not that much better with all the bells and whistles.

And as for agencies that Vang everything, Kudoes! Just as long as the troops get to shoot them plenty,this should aid everyone to become more effective, and also safe.But getting the great mods and keeping with a 20 round a year training and qualification allowance(As MD DOC still does) is a serious case of misplaced priorities,IMO. Hardware fixes to software probs rarely work well.

Back when I instructed the use of the shotgun to bunches of DOC rookies, the overwhelming factor as to whether they could be effective with the shotgun was whether they really wanted to learn same. Most regarded it as a chore, painful and scary. Those that rose above this qualified in more than name.Those that didn't, well, I made a mental note to stay well out of their way when it hit the fan.

And size was nice, but not essential. Some excellent work was done by pixie sized folks, with too long stocks and a nasty kick. The deciding factor was attitude, not addons.

True, the occassional student that struggled with the standard 870 got the loan of my 9 1/2 lb, accessorized personal weapon, but they qualified with an agency 870, after learning to deal with the thing and working up incrementally.

If people learn nothing else from my postings, learn this. Train with what you'll use.

And, attitude works better than addons....

Dismounting from soapbox....
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