Pistol grip vs. stock


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Juna
May 2, 2006, 02:25 PM
I'm looking around at 12-gauge shotguns now (primarily for home defense, but who knows what else). My question is about which type of grip to get? I know all the movies show people with pistol grips, and I realize they're shorter and easier to maneuver in a house and around corners, etc.

But, does a pistol grip (and presumably shooting it from the hip) largely affect accuracy (as opposed to aiming with a shotgun with a full stock)? Any thoughts as to which grip I should get? Keep in mind my wife may be firing it. Which is easier to shoot for a newbie HD 12 gauge? Is there a big difference?

Thanks in advance!

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birddog
May 2, 2006, 02:31 PM
I've shot both types, Mariner-style, and pistol grip. I'm not at all recoil sensitive, but that 12 gauge recoil packs quite a punch when translated into the palm of your trigger hand. Accuracy-wise, in close quarters, I wouldn't see a difference. However, I think follow up shots are more difficult with the pistol grip. If you're dealing with a new shooter, I'd suggest going with the full length. Much less painful to practice and become proficient with.

AJ Dual
May 2, 2006, 02:48 PM
To actualy be proficient with a pistol grip takes lots of practice. You've essentialy got all the weight and recoil problems of a shotgun, combined with all the unsteady grip problems of a pistol.

You're also giving up the defensive shotgun's number one advantage. Hitability that a stock and cheek-weld view down the long barrel (as opposed to a pistol) gives you. At almost any interior CQB distance, (unless you live in a mansion) the spread of a shotgun's shot column in flight is barely any greater than the bore itself, and almost never bigger than a grown man's outstretched hand. At those distances the pattern is pretty much one hole, so it still needs to be aimed just like a solitary bullet. Unless you're an extremely practiced hip-shooter (We're talking to the point you could do shows) the pistol grip and hip-firing puts you at a huge disadvantage.

The power of a shotgun over handgun cartriges is only secondary to the inherent long gun hitability. The destructive power of the shotgun is meaningless if you can't put it on target.

I'd estimate that 95% of all the pistol grip (only) shotguns out there are for show and/or intimidation, because it looks cool. The other 5% of users have a manuverability/concealability concern that's so dire, it overrides the huge disadvantage in hitability it gives them.

At a minimum, if you feel you must have a stockless PG at times, get one that's also a folding stock. That way you can get a shoulder stock into play the first instant it's practical.

This is separate advice from shotguns with BOTH a pistol grip and a stock, that's a different discussion.

Juna
May 2, 2006, 03:48 PM
Actually, since you brought up guns with BOTH a pistol grip AND a stock, would you recommend that as the best of the 3 options posed (pistol grip, stock, or both) and why? I'm a newbie eager for knowledge. :D

Also, thanks for the replies thus far!

BozemanMT
May 2, 2006, 04:21 PM
yep, and the Knoxx cop stock is just awesome, esp for recoil sensitive and the adjustability to make it shorter.
but a true pistol grip only shotgun is just about impossible to fire accurately.

AJ Dual
May 2, 2006, 06:02 PM
Actually, since you brought up guns with BOTH a pistol grip AND a stock, would you recommend that as the best of the 3 options posed (pistol grip, stock, or both) and why? I'm a newbie eager for knowledge.

For shotguns with both pistol grip and a stock vs. a traditional one-piece stocks, I'd say it boils down to personal preference. There's pros and cons to each.

Pro pistol grip/Con traditional stock:

The pistol grip is a more natural position for the hand to take. If you reflexively extend your arm and make a gripping hold with your hand, you'll see that your fingers and palm are naturaly in-line with the angle of a pistol grip. If you position your wrist like you're holding a straight stock, you have to rotate your hand downward substantialy further to grab the straighter stock. It's not uncomfortable, but it is an extended positon for your hand to take from the natural rest angle of your wrist.

It's also argued that the perpendicular pistol grip distributes recoil both into your hand and your shoulder, whereas a straight traditional stock more of the recoil goes to your shoulder.

Pro traditional stock/Con pistol grip:

OTOH, the pistol grip is an extra protrusion on the gun which could hang up on something, and is also something that might take a few extra seconds to grab, or move your hand over to. If you grab a single piece stock right at the "wrist", the grip where you put your hand and the stock joins the reciever, it's already in firing position.

In conclusion:

My personal opinion is that it barely makes a difference, the pros and cons of each even out for the most part. What feels best to you is probably the most important.

However, for 100% efficiency, if you've got time to have the shotgun ready, it has optics like a red-dot, or you are going to have to spend a significant amount of time with your hand on the grip while waiting, or you are going to be firing a high number of rounds, the pistol grip w/stock gets a slight nod.

If you need to grab the shotgun at a moments notice and are in a fluid situation where you need to take more reflexive shots without being prepared, I think the traditional one-piece stock has the edge.

But again, I think the differences are splitting hairs, if you've had ample opportunity to practice with your particular shotgun either is fine.

Dave McCracken
May 2, 2006, 09:53 PM
Any of you PG advocates live near MD?.....

Shawn Dodson
May 3, 2006, 04:01 PM
A shotgun fitted with only a pistol grip looks intimidating, which is why they're popular with Hollywood, but it turns a fine fighting weapon into a POS.

In a gun battle, a person armed with a PG-only shotgun is going to be at a disadvantage.

Whereas a PG/full stock (PG stock) is a different matter. (Firstly, I wouldn't install one on a Mossberg because of the location of the manual safety.)

I have a PG stock (Speedfeed III) installed on my Remington 870. In some manuever/ready positions it reduces the strain on my wrist. In addition it seems to help to minimize "chicken winging" of my firing arm, especially when maneuvering weak side corners. Finally, it facilitates, to some degree, commonality of shooter/weapon interface between my Glock 19 and AR-15.

Spec ops Grunt
May 3, 2006, 05:13 PM
Were talking about the one piece stock with a semi-pistol grip, right?

bowfin
May 3, 2006, 05:24 PM
/*But, does a pistol grip (and presumably shooting it from the hip) largely affect accuracy (as opposed to aiming with a shotgun with a full stock)*/

Largely, yes. That is why you seldom see anyone at the skeet, trap, or clays range shooting a pistol grip shotgun from the hip, ditto duck and turkey hunters.

A pistol grip stock could have three different connotations, depending on the person you ask. It could be a revolver like grip, a stock that mimics that of an M-16, or the traditional shotgun stock as opposed to a straight stock.

I would have to vote for the last one (traditional stocked shotgun) as far as ease of handling in all situations.

Shawn Dodson
May 4, 2006, 12:27 PM
Pistol grip only (PG-only):
http://images.andale.com/f2/122/127/12301129/1094883070055_1300.jpg

Pistol grip/full stock (PG stock):
http://im1.shutterfly.com/procserv/47b3ce02b3127cce80ce8f89db870000001610

PJR
May 4, 2006, 12:49 PM
Buy a pistol grip. Get it out of your system. Admire yourself in the mirror looking ubertactical a few times then go to the range. After you've shot it a few times and find it kicks like a (insert expletive) and you can't hit anything you'll most likely sell it to the next sucker. Been their done that.

The pistol grip/full stock is a better option however when I tried one it felt far different than the traditional stock that I'm used to. Using a traditional stock is well imprinted in my software and reinforced with frequent clay target outings so I'm sticking with what I know works for me.

Juna
May 4, 2006, 01:07 PM
Thanks for the replies, folks. I'm set on a regular stock. I'm intrigued by the PG/stock combo, but I can't afford it, anyway. :D Now if only I can decide between the 870 and the Mossy 5XX.

BTW, what's the difference b/w the Mossy 500 and 590? I would go to their web site, but it's blocked at my place of work. :mad:

30-06 lover
May 4, 2006, 02:57 PM
I was gong to build a HD shotty with a pistol grip, but after shooing one...I'l keep the straight stock. The recoiled on my hand turned me off, and because I shot straight while hunting for so many years, it just didn't feel right after the sot, so my reaction time was really slow.
-Mike

bowfin
May 4, 2006, 05:30 PM
/*Now if only I can decide between the 870 and the Mossy 5XX.*/

Look at an Ithaca M37 before you narrow the field down too far.

A Mossberg 590 is basically a heavier duty Model 500 and with a 590, you can field strip the magazine and swab it out without unscrewing it from the receiver.

A Mossberg 500 can stand up to years of hard use, mine has taken at least a dozen different species of feathered and furred creatures for 25 years and loaned out to people notoriously hard on firearms, but with proper cleaning, they just keep going. But then, so does a Remington or Ithaca or Browning.

Spec ops Grunt
May 4, 2006, 05:54 PM
Or Winchester.

sm
May 4, 2006, 05:56 PM
Try before you buy.
Everyone is different, guns vary on MOA. For instance a left handed shooter may find a Ithaca 37 or BPS a better choice for THEM.
Train the mind, the body, with a gun that fits YOU. Pattern boards reveal what a gun will do.

Does not make any difference what guns works for someone else, what a choke or barrel is marked, what a box of ammo "says" it will do, what someone on the Internet "says" will do "what" and that goes for ammo patterning pellets or grouping slugs.

One can get some ideas, one can get a baseline or starting point - the reality is, one had to investigate and do for themselves.

No two gun barrels / chokes off the assembly line are guaranteed to be the same, nor will different lots of the same ammo be the same. Only the pattern board will reveal.



Condemnation before Investigation is NEVER wise.

PGO is a specialized tool for a task, I have taught armored car folks the PGO, and I ALWAYS start with a Full stocked bone stock shotgun first with REALLY light loads. The job dictates a PGO for these folks. These folks practiced with bone stock full stocked shotguns with light loads, working up to heavier loads to duty loads.
They continued too...and were better able to use the PGO and to pass qual's when needed. Only reason some owned a PGO themselves - a backup shotgun to be used for work only. Personal HD guns were full stocked regular shotguns.

I do not personally use a regular shotgun with a PG. Like many, I have Too many years of shooting the regular one. For ME I am more versatile.

I have one shotgun alone with over 200K rds thru it...there are many others around here with a LOT of trigger time and we can take clays, birds, game,deer...and handle serious situations.

I personally do not do any shotguns with any gadgets or anything. Reliable, Gun fit , correct basics and with gun fit and correctly mounting gun to face - I do not have a problem with recoil. Been known to shoot 200 slugs in a day.

Good shooters are made - not born. -Misseldine.

One cannot buy skill and targets.

Can't buy it - gotta earn it

Now after getting a gun that fits, training, lessons, BA/UU/R

You get where you paint them out of the sky...
You get to where you can fell 'em with a stick... Brister

I am not the only one that has taken a YOUTH Single shot NEF in 20 ga and taken 15 doves with only 12 shells. Some even shot shooting from the hip, or one handed.

We all learned with bone stock guns that fit, lessons and trigger time. Some of us shot up to 1k rds a week at times. Some of us did correct mounting to face and dry fire 25 times a night - to 100 times a night.

We are shotgunners.

We are NOT shotgun owning folks collecting for cool factor or for something to play with curb feelers.

We earned our title of shotgunners. , no matter what we use a shotgun for.


Steve

Dave McCracken
May 4, 2006, 10:11 PM
Any of the shotguns mentioned in this thread are good choices. Get the one that feels best and go shoot the heck out of it. Preferably with a good instructor.

With the flimsiest shotguns mentioned, working life is measured in tens of thousands of rounds. Cost per use of the most expensive pump made is a fraction of a cent.

flatdog
May 4, 2006, 10:40 PM
Go 'head, I know you want to. BORROW one with just the pistol grip...get some 00 Buck or #4 Buck and have at it.

It will all be made clear.:evil:

Juna
May 4, 2006, 11:01 PM
Thanks for the replies, everyone! This is a very helpful forum!

I was just curious as to why so many people chose PGOs. I figured the 'cool' factor had to be part of it. I admit they look cool, and they seem like they'd be good for moving around tight spaces in your house for HD, but when I went to the shop and held some shotguns, the stock just feels a lot better than the PGO and points more naturally. I'm a pistol guy thus far, so that may seem odd, but I'd opt for the stock.

It just seems intuitive that most people would be more accurate with a stock, but I'm a brand spankin' newbie when it comes to shotguns, so I figured I'd ask and find out for sure. :D

sm
May 5, 2006, 12:14 AM
http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=2427717&postcount=4

Teufelhunden
May 5, 2006, 12:24 AM
Or Winchester.

Or the Winchester's derivative: the FN Police Shotgun. Search here for Lee Lapin's review of it. I'm very happy with mine. 10" pattern at 25 yards with Federal Reduced Recoil buck.

-Teuf

Shawn Dodson
May 5, 2006, 11:39 AM
I was just curious as to why so many people chose PGOs. I figured the 'cool' factor had to be part of it. I admit they look cool, and they seem like they'd be good for moving around tight spaces in your house for HD, but when I went to the shop and held some shotguns, the stock just feels a lot better than the PGO and points more naturally. I'm a pistol guy thus far, so that may seem odd, but I'd opt for the stock. If tight quarters (doorway, hall, alcove, etc.) or a danger close situation is encountered you can always unshoulder your shotgun and mount it in a “compressed ready” position, indexing and pressing the grip area of the stock against the side of your chest, right at the bottom of your pectoral muscle, just like you would if you were mounted in a retention position with a handgun.

If the space you’re maneuvering through is really tight, you may have to also depress the muzzle somewhat, or further “compress” your “compressed ready” mount (being careful not to chicken wing your firing arm so it doesn’t lead you).

Kalashnikov
May 5, 2006, 04:20 PM
Personally, I have a PGO Maverick 88. Yes, recoil is punishing for longer shooting sessions. During times that I know I will be shooting more than 25-30 rounds, I install the factory stock. Otherwise I keep it PGO, as it fits me well, comes up to my POA quicker, and is more manuverable in my small, tight corners house. Evaluate your needs and learn how to use both. I am accurate enough in the HD ranges I'd be dealing with (5yrds or shorter). I won't lie, outside of 15 yards I have much more trouble trying to hit what I want with the PGO stock, but inside, I have the confidence inmyself and my gun to know I can do the job. oh and JMO, but get some decent sights if you plan for the shotgun to be used outdoors, not just the standard bead.

Squidward
May 5, 2006, 04:59 PM
The best of both worlds-PG full stock.

Okiecruffler
May 5, 2006, 06:21 PM
I had a Maverick with a PGO on it. Alot of fun to play with when using a light load of 7 1/2's. I actually got pretty accurate with it. Pop cans were no problem out to 25 yrds or so. Tried it with 000 buck and the range trip was over. Wrist swelled up and gave me problems for about a week. Before you get the idea I'm some danty little thing, the pistol I was shooting most at that time was my 444 Contender (yes, three 4's, not a typo).
A few years ago the wife bought a mossy with a PG on it, it still sits on her side of the bed, with a full stock on it.
I've put together a few goofy things with lots of bells and whistles, but my bedside gun is an old double that fits me like I was born with it.

kokogirl
May 8, 2006, 09:18 PM
inaccurate with a pistol grip?

if so, you should stop using it.

Always a case-by-case basis. I live my PG just fine, and just as accurate (even with clays).

You wrist will hurt just a little bit after shelling a couple hundred.

Onslaught
May 11, 2006, 01:35 PM
I do not currently have a pistol grip only shotgun, BUT if you ever find you'd like to try one that does NOT hurt like an SOB when fired, check out the Pachmayr pistol grip. I think the sheer weight of it does a lot to tame the kick, but of course being covered in rubber doesn't hurt either.

I only used it for copperheads on my father-in-law's property, and it was less accurate. A buddy came along one day with his new Mossberg with factory PG, and you could really feel the difference between the two grips.

My favorite part of the trip was when my buddy got cocky, had his cigarette hanging out of his mouth while firing from the hip, and the shotgun forend slipped right out of his hand, the shotgun flipped straight up and smacked him in the mouth, knocking his lit cigarette into his mouth! :) Now THAT was worth the price of a box of shells...

Having said that (about the PG) I have a full stock on my Defender now, and I have a SpeedFeed III on my wife's because the SFIII stock with the optional flat buttplate is even shorter than the Winchester youth stock. If I found myself in need of another really short shotgun for storage, I'd get a folder instead.

P.S. - No Dave McCracken, I still do not want to compete against you using a PG stock. :)

Matt King
May 11, 2006, 06:40 PM
I have found that it is extremly hard to hit anything accuratly with pistol grips. Stick with the stock

Dave McCracken
May 11, 2006, 10:28 PM
Darn....

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