Question on old Mossberg 500C


August 11, 2013, 05:45 PM
Hi everyone , I picked up an older Mossberg 500C 20ga that has seen a fair amount of action over the years but the price was right. Anyway, I do have a few questions.
1. There is no serial # on the gun so what is the latest date it could be made, also is there any way to tell how old the gun is?
2. I will be taking the gun apart to clean and oil it. Were the old guns made the same as the new ones? In other words if I look at a "you tube" video on how to take it apart will it still apply to this older gun, or were changes made over time.
3. The main reason I picked up this gun was that it has a really nice WALNUT stock and forearm with good grain and character that I think will look outstanding when I refinish them although the checkering is fairly warn. Did Mossberg put walnut on the old 500 C's?

It looks like this gun was made to a much, much higher standard that todays Mossberg 500C models.
Thanks in advance for any information you can give me,

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August 11, 2013, 07:02 PM
there were a couple changes made, the primary ones of which are:
1. yours will likely have a single action bar going from the pump sleeve to the bolt carrier, whereas the new ones may have 2. no biggie and easy to figure out, and doesn't make any difference in dis/reassembly.
2. there's an older and newer type of cartridge interrupter; the old type was actuated by the elevator, and the newer type is actuated earlier in the cycle by the bolt slide/carrier. You can see the difference (if you care) in this video:
dis/reassembly is identical so no trouble there.
3. There have been a couple generations of bolts and how they lock up... IIRC the earlier ones had a cam-only locking block and the more recent ones have a spring assisted locking block. I may be wrong on that. The dis/reassembly is the same unless you strip the bolt, which you probably won't have to do. If you do, just pay attention to the way it comes apart and put it back in reverse order. :) Good luck; let us know if you need any further assistance.

August 11, 2013, 08:44 PM
Yes, the early 500's were real American walnut. The 500 was introduced in 1962. 20 gauge guns came out in 63, and serial numbers became mandatory in 68, so yours was built in that time frame.

August 12, 2013, 08:40 AM
The Mossberg 500 had a Walnut stock well into the 70's maybe even the early 80's. Then Mossberg switched to beech. The switch to beech coincides with the time that American furniture factories started closing and we started buying veneer furniture from China.

August 15, 2013, 12:05 PM
The magazine and action tube is different on older models and will require different disassembly.

The old style magazine tube has two bearing rings and a spring. The corresponding action tube is smooth and the rear trunnion mount is enclosed at the rear. The spring from the magazine puts pressure on the mount when the action is forward to lock everything in place somewhat. The magazine needs to be removed before the action tube assembly can be taken out.

Newer models have a completely smooth magazine tube and the action tube has several indentations to keep it centered on the magazine. The action tube will come right off once it is free of the bolt.

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