Letter Re: Defensive Shotguns on a Budget

Dear Jim:
Mr. Bravo is right on the money regarding Mossberg shotguns. They are inexpensive and reliable. At IDPA shoots (www.idpa.com) I see problems EVERY match with auto shotguns, but far fewer problems with pump guns. The pump gun is a little slower to run, but the major problem of short stroking the pump is quickly corrected on the fly, while the autos can jam and are completely out of action.
The only mechanical thing I have had go wrong with my Mossberg 500 or 590 is the safety’s spring loosening up after 10 years, with the safety coming on with recoil. The factory fixed the 10 year old gun at no charge.

Combat Pump Shotguns:
You can now add a recoil reducing pistol grip stock to your Mossberg or other pump gun. This actually tames 12 gauge birdshot down to .223 recoil levels! 00 buckshot is a breeze to shoot.
In my opinion the Mossberg 500 home defense model with the lighter and shorter 18.5″ barrel is the way to go, vs. the 20″ barrel, 8 shot 590.  See: http://mossberg.com/pcatalog/Specpurp.htm
Save the money on the shotgun model because you can add the “Sidewinder” 10 round DETACHABLE drum magazine for 10 + 1 firepower. The Sidewinder detachable mag is only made for Mossbergs, a critical reason to go Mossberg….
Put a SpecOps recoil reducing stock on the Mossberg 500, and add the “PowerPak” 5 round stock ammo carrier for more ammo on the gun, see
and then add the 6 round “SideSaddle” mag on the side of the receiver, see
Now you have a 10 round mag + 5 on the stock + 6 on the receiver = 21 rounds of 12 gauge on the gun! Ideal for the emergency “grab and go” situation where you don’t have time to put on all that Tommy Tactical gear. In a real emergency time is often the most critical asset. If you do have time to put on gear, you can keep the optional 6 round box mag on your belt.
You can even get cute, and load birdshot or buckshot in the mag for less penetration, and then put specialty rounds like flechettes, or slugs on the Side Saddle and PowerPak.
Rough pricing, Mossberg 500, $230 and up, all the other accessories total roughly $ 450. As always shop around – links are to manufacturers, but retailers are often cheaper, e.g., Cabela’s is $220 on the Sidewinder. Regards – OSOM – “Out of Sight, Out of Mind”