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Old December 30, 2020, 06:14 PM   #26
FITASC
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Even for SD, I would take a semi. A jack of all trades like a pump, is a master of none.
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Old December 30, 2020, 07:31 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bamaranger View Post
A manually operated repeater, theoretically, a GOOD pump should be 100% reliable and less finicky than an autoloader.

In my book that leaves two choices, the Rem 870 family, and the Mossbergs.
Thank you Sir for taking the time to write such a well written and informative reply.
It is much appreciated.
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Old December 30, 2020, 10:07 PM   #28
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Until you short shuck it and jam a shell on the lifter or the shell expands and locks it up. A pump is no more reliable than a good semi; its main advantage is that it is cheap.
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Old December 30, 2020, 10:33 PM   #29
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With a Remington that chances of a shell slipping back under the lifter and jamming up the works during a reload is high on older guns. There is a redesigned lifter on newer guns with a shall catch on them. The mossbergs don't have that problem since the lifter is up until you pump. While you can short stroke a pump, few people who hunt and shoot clays regularly will make that mistake. People who short pump are not really shooters.
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Old December 30, 2020, 11:43 PM   #30
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The shotgun I used as a teenager in the 1980s was a Mossberg 500 marketed by Montgomery Wards with Western Fields labelling.

It had a medium length barrel with a 2.75" chamber and an adjustable choke. No tubes to mess with, just rotate the knurled sleeve as desired.

For me it worked about as good as anyone could want in the "do all" role.

I do not shoot shotguns anymore, but that gun is still stashed away. I would not hesitate to pull it out if I had a reason.

My boy has a couple of the Remington 870 pumps. The Remingtons are good guns (possibly better than the Mossberg on average), but my old Mossberg is better (smoother / better feeding / more reliable) than either of of his examples.

And by the way, the pump shotgun has the best chance of achieving "the perfect outcome" in a HD situation. That sound of a round being cycled into the chamber is so well known and respected that the pump is more likely to to convince intruder(s) to depart before there is even visual contact.

Last edited by P Flados; December 30, 2020 at 11:56 PM.
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Old December 31, 2020, 02:14 AM   #31
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OK

Alright...... please note the use of the word "theoretically" in my post. Operate near any firearm incorrectly and one may incur a failure. Feed any firearm cheap ammo (as in cheap shotshells) and the same is likely.

Pumps are long recognized as durable, affordable workhorses. Which was what the OP was inquiring regards. I have been to far to many 3Gun matches to see a wide variety of gas operated Remingtons stumble to equate the reliablity of an affordable gas gun with a good pump. Note too that the OP is indeed inquiring about a "jack of all trades" gun.
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Old January 17, 2021, 07:50 AM   #32
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PistolerO, any purchase yet?
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Old January 17, 2021, 08:57 AM   #33
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I have many shotguns. But one gun I have is the Mossberg Flex. This is a gun you can expand with as you grow. For example, I have the standard Hunting stock, a Tactical Stock and a pistol grip stock. I have a 18" barrel, two hunting barrels and a slug barrel.
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Old January 18, 2021, 12:44 PM   #34
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Remington 870 Wingmaster with two barrels (18” and 26”) and call it a day…just make sure the 26 has chokes.
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Old January 27, 2021, 11:19 PM   #35
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As mentioned early put your hands on a Browning BPS if you can. All above mentioned are good shotguns, but for me the BPS is best. Fits me best and bottom eject is great at the trap field.
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Old January 28, 2021, 08:42 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by baddarryl View Post
As mentioned early put your hands on a Browning BPS if you can. All above mentioned are good shotguns, but for me the BPS is best. Fits me best and bottom eject is great at the trap field.
A bottom eject is not so great at the trap field if like many trap clubs, if the empty hits the ground you are not allowed to pick it up. Unless of course there is some way to eject the empty into your hand.
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Old January 28, 2021, 01:29 PM   #37
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For one shot at a time, that isn't an issue and at least your empties won't be heading towards your squadmate on your right. The Ithaca is also another good choice besides the 870, 500 and BPS.
Unfortunately, in the current political climate, even used pumps are getting scarce and expensive as panic takes hold and all shotgun ammo is now as hard to find as pistol ammo.
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Old January 29, 2021, 09:57 PM   #38
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If I could only have one shotgun, it would be an inertia auto-loader. There are a bunch of them out there now that the Benelli patent has expired. Both of my boys have Stoeger M3000 platform shotguns with 24" barrels. Multiple top junior titles in 3Gun, 1000s of birds harvested, both have made All-State in Trap and one a state title. The older was offered college scholarships to shoot in College (he took the baseball offers instead) and the younger is on the same path. I've shot a 25 in trap with an 870 and an 18" barrel and with a BT99 and with a Golden Clays.

You might be able to find an M2 for under $1K, but you can certainly get a Weatherby Element, Franchi Affinity or Stoeger M3000 for under $1K. If you really want an all around shotgun, those would be my suggestions to consider.
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Old January 30, 2021, 10:11 AM   #39
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In your situation, I would probably look for a Benelli Supernova or a Mossberg 500. I’d probably look for one with about a 26” barrel. Look for one with replaceable chokes so you have flexibility. Then I would look for an 18-1/2” barrel that would also make it handier for HD.

If you need to change LOP there are aftermarket stocks available for both, some offering features that reduce recoil.

Even limiting yourself, to one shogun, you can give yourself a lot of versatility.
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Old January 30, 2021, 10:49 AM   #40
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For a decent shotgun, consider the ....

Winchester 1200 -to 1500 pump shotguns, they have proper weight for handling trap and skeet, the later models have the tube chokes the ealier had the "WINCHOKEs" for the barrel.

Remingtons, I am not fond of either current model as they are heavy, clunky and not a finish that has decent life [both stock finish and wood, especially the laminated stocks. [A friend was waterfowl hunting and he took a dip in the water, by the time got home and stripped the 870 it was rusting and the stock was swelling]. [PS 870 don't like swimming, they prefer to DIVE ,muzzle first!]

mossbergs 500 are decent and work, if you get an older model, check to determine if the top safety was changed to the steel one, and not the original plastic that has a proclivity to fall apart.
I have one that has the rifle barrel, 24"turkey barrel, 28" field barrels, [ both fixed choke and tube choke] and the .50 Cal ML barrel.



Ithacas are light to carry but really not for trap / skeet. Have proven themselve in WWI, WWII, Korea, & SEAsian wargame.
I have one that has the rifle barrel, 24"turkey barrel, 28" field barrels, [ both fixed choke and tube choke] and the .50 Cal ML barrel.

My home duty one is an 1897 Winchester, 12 ga, occasionally get take out for turkey and upland with a 30" barrel.

You decide which gauge, I have 12, 16's & 20.
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Old February 1, 2021, 02:56 PM   #41
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Bottom eject is not an issue for shooting clays, just catch the empty when you dismount.
My SBT has an ejector, when I break it open I just grab the empty as the ejector pops it out. Don't restrict the ejector, allow it to deliver the empty to your hand and no worries.
My club lets us pick up our empties, I'd rather not bend over.
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Old February 1, 2021, 03:19 PM   #42
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I don't think the OP is going to be worried about reloading AA or Nitro hulls and saving every one. I decided a long time ago not to get into shotgun reloading. By the time you buy all the components, you might as well buy promotional loaded ammo. Only if you load high dollar hunting loads does it make sense and if you don't shoot a lot of high dollar hunting loads it still doesn't make sense. Some are obsessing about auto vs pump. While autos are great, they don't always function right with lower powered rubber buck or bean bag rounds. It may not be a concern for the OP but pumps are always more versatile than autos. I agree the inertia driven Stogers offer a lot for the money but so does a Mossberg 500. Some are wedded to the 870. It is more difficult to reach forward to release the carrier than to reach back behind the trigger like with the mossberg. We each have our preferences. Ithaca 37s have the carrier release in an easy to reach comfortable place but some think the traditional crossbolt safety is not as good as a top tang safety. All these choices could be fine for a multiple purpose shotgun as long as it's reliable, not overly long and he has a variety of ammo to shoot. Heck for most people who are not dedicated duck hunters or required to shoot steel shot even a Mod or Full fixed choke 2 3/4 chambered classic can serve just fine as a do it all shotgun.
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Old February 1, 2021, 05:34 PM   #43
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Arguing about Remingtons vs Mossbergs is dumb. Either one works; the rest is just personal preference. If you get a Mosssberg with the plastic safety button, change it to a metal one. I used to have a box of those things. ANY other pump gun is a distant second place, UNLESS you prefer the extra weight and different feel of a Browning BPS.
I am a retired gunsmith. The worst enemy of any semi auto is the nut behind the buttstock. Unless you plan to thoroughly familiarize yourself with the workings of a semi auto, get a pump.
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Old February 2, 2021, 09:23 AM   #44
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Are there extension shell tubes available for the Mossberg 500? I was thinking about having some fun getting into 3-gun this coming summer.

Also, I like tang safeties because my center fire rifles are Savages. Which auto loader shotguns besides the Mossberg have tang safeties?

If it is a pump I think I'll go with the 500.
If it is an autoloader ideally an inertia gun with tang safety: does such a thing exist?
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Old February 2, 2021, 10:09 AM   #45
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What's the concern with the safety? For competition you do not load until you are ready to shoot and then unload any before you leave the station. In the field is one thing, targets/competition is another. Get the gun that fits.
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Old February 2, 2021, 10:23 AM   #46
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Sure, I was hoping to get one gun that is a jack of all trades (master of none is ok as I am not an experienced shotgunner), and trying to weigh the tradeoffs of each alternative.

As I am used to Savage tang safeties, I'd like to stay with the same type. The Moss 500 is looking like the most reasonable alternative for me.
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Old February 3, 2021, 02:35 AM   #47
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Since you like tang safeties, then the two that pop into my head are the Mossberg family and the Browning BPS.

IF you want to really have 1 shotgun for all purposes, you will need to be able to invest in different length barrels, and accept that it will do all things decently, but nothing perfectly.

Personally, I can live with that. IF I had to have only 1 shotgun, and pump was allowed, I'd probably stick to the Rem 870 Super Magnum with 28" barrel. I could use any 2 3/4" or 3" barrel for a regular 870 on it- like a SD barrel, or a cantilevered rifled barrel for mounting scopes and hunting deer, or a 24" SuperMag barrel for brush, or find an older 2 3/4" 30" barrel for trap.

The same goes for the Mossbergs. I believe the 535 is the 3.5" version of the 500, and I think you can swap any 2 3/4 or 3" barrel onto it- but I don't KNOW that.

I do know this is possible with the 870 SuperMagnum.

IF you buy a used Mossberg- get the newest one you can. Before around 1971, they only had 1 action bar [like Winchester Model 12, Ithaca 37, and a host of others], but they now have a 2 bar system [like Rem 870]. The newer it is, the fewer issues with parts replacement.

I really don't like shooting 3 1/2" shells. 4 of them makes my shoulder feel like 40-50 2 3/4" shells, or about 15-25 3" shells.

Yet, it is better to have the capacity and not need it- if you can only have 1 shotgun.


Now, I agree: variety is better.

Yet, you can make the spouse happy by having 1 shotgun, and make yourself happy with 4 different barrels to make it a jack of all trades.

Or, teach her the value of the right tool, and get 4 different shotguns!
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Old February 3, 2021, 08:58 AM   #48
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If I could have only one shotgun (what a horrible thought), it would be an Ithaca 37.
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Old February 3, 2021, 11:32 AM   #49
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Darkgael, the Ithaca 37 is a great shotgun. However, I've replaced and repaired [different ones] the stocks on them. They are thin in the head area. I would say a bit better than a sidelock SxS shotgun, but- very thin.

If the Ithaca 37 was made since around '65 or so, it probably is ok for steel shot- as long as it has either rotoforged barrel or threaded choke.

Yet- I'd keep it for upland hunting and range fun- but not 500+ rounds a month range use like some with OU seem to do, or duck loads. I know they made a deerslayer version for hunting, but the wooden stock is still thin.

Keep in mind that you can't add a magazine tube extension to the 37- if that matters. You have to be content with 4+1. The Mossberg has the same issue.



If we are talking fixed choke old-timey shotguns, I love the look/feel of the Ithaca 37, and I also love the Winchester Model 12 [which you can add a special follower/spring and convert back to it's 1912 design of 6+1].

With the Ithaca 37, you can buy replacement barrels. Yet, there aren't as many options as there are for Mossberg/Rem870, and there aren't as many choke options for them.

Yet- for the OPs purpose- I'd recommend something with steel shot capability and replaceable barrels that don't require timing marks or special tools.
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Old February 4, 2021, 09:58 AM   #50
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Love my Ithaca 37, but agree with jmstr, it is not in the running for an all-around shotgun.
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