Kel-Tec KSG Initial Impressions


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HKGuns
September 21, 2013, 05:19 PM
LGS had one of these in the back today and gave me a fair deal on one significantly under MSRP. I've never owned a "Tactical" shotgun before as they're never interested me....This one is different.

I haven't shot it yet so I will give you my initial impressions, focusing on the main features that make this thing different.

Capacity:

This thing holds a LOT of rounds, far more than your traditional home defense tactical shotgun. I'm loading one tube with six 3" 00 Buck and one tube with six 3" slugs. With one in the chamber that is 13 rounds of lead down range without a reload.

It is relatively easy to load and very easy to select the mag tube you want to feed rounds from.

Pardon the inferior camera Phone pictures, my normal camera is not available today.

You can see, in the picture below, where you load and select which mag tube from which you're feeding rounds from. An additional safety feature is that if the selector is in the middle it won't feed any rounds. Some might call it an opportunity to fail. In the picture below the selector is in the middle.

http://hkguns.zenfolio.com/img/s1/v54/p1985764416-5.jpg

Size & Weight:

This shotgun is small and EXTREMELY handy. It balances well and is quite maneuverable in a tight space. This would be my choice of shotgun if I made my living doing forced entry. (This will serve duty as my HD shotgun.) The bullpup design makes it balance extremely well and with all of that lead down the mag tubes you don't feel the weight and it helps balance it out really really well.

The picture below has a pair of M gloves for size reference. I can't get over how compact a package this really is having shot many shotguns over my years.

http://hkguns.zenfolio.com/img/s11/v31/p2055295116-5.jpg


Takedown:

The gun is relatively easy to break down for cleaning, there are a couple of pins that allow you to remove the stock and the trigger group. After that, most everything will pull right out. I had no issues getting it apart and putting it back together. The pins are a great feature and you even have little holes in the grip to store the pins when you are cleaning the shotgun.

The only thing I don't like about it so far is that it needs to be slammed home extremely hard in order to release the shell from the magazine tube. It is really easy to short stroke this thing and I've written Kel-Tec to determine if this is normal. I will post their response when it is received. It may get better over time or there may be something a bit out of spec.

Below are some miscellaneous pictures of various parts of the shotgun. Notice the rails on the top and the bottom which will be very handy and are a great design feature.

Did I say this thing was really compact?

http://hkguns.zenfolio.com/img/s1/v46/p2111074767-5.jpg

http://hkguns.zenfolio.com/img/s8/v14/p1903767434-5.jpg

http://hkguns.zenfolio.com/img/s4/v64/p1894724588-5.jpg

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Girodin
September 21, 2013, 05:58 PM
This would be my choice of shotgun if I made my living doing forced entry. (This will serve duty as my HD shotgun.)

I must admit I am very befuddled as to how one can own a shotgun for less than 24 hrs and be ready to declare it not only HD worthy but a duty worthy weapon.

Have you even shot it?

Notice the rails on the top and the bottom which will be very handy and are a great design feature.


The bottom rail might be a great design feature in theory. However, if one googles "broken KSG rail" you can find a number of pictures of different guns where the plastic bottom rail has broken on folks.

HKGuns
September 21, 2013, 06:08 PM
I must admit I am very befuddled as to how one can own a shotgun for less than 24 hrs and be ready to declare it not only HD worthy but a duty worthy weapon.

Have you even shot it?

You obviously didn't read my post correctly. Try again.

M2 Carbine
September 21, 2013, 09:23 PM
Good gun.

http://i1183.photobucket.com/albums/x464/Bell-helicopter-407/KelTecKSGCTandSL_zps5fd6df3e.jpg (http://s1183.photobucket.com/user/Bell-helicopter-407/media/KelTecKSGCTandSL_zps5fd6df3e.jpg.html)


Although I own a number of shotguns I am not a "shotgun person".
My shotguns are third in line for HD, behind a AR and pistols.

But since I got the KSG it is fast moving up to the primary HD gun.
I plan on installing a full choke that I hope will keep a decent pattern out to about 35 yards, my HD range.
If I can get the needed range from the gun it will be the go to HD gun.


Even the ladies like the KSG. :)

http://i1183.photobucket.com/albums/x464/Bell-helicopter-407/AbbyshootingKSG2_zps0fea9fea.jpg (http://s1183.photobucket.com/user/Bell-helicopter-407/media/AbbyshootingKSG2_zps0fea9fea.jpg.html)

M2 Carbine
September 21, 2013, 09:25 PM
The bottom rail might be a great design feature in theory. However, if one googles "broken KSG rail" you can find a number of pictures of different guns where the plastic bottom rail has broken on folks.
Old news. Been corrected.

basicblur
September 21, 2013, 10:23 PM
Old news. Been corrected.
How so? Did a quick search and can't find updated info.

Don't own a shotgun, but a few years? ago I figured I ought to have at least one. The KSG got my interest, but after reading reviews, decided it was not quite ready for prime time.

I've been waiting for updates / corrections to problems, and for the prices to drop.

HKGuns
September 21, 2013, 10:55 PM
I can certainly see where the polymer rail "could" be prone to break if you mount a longer forward grip and really reef on it when you cycle the gun. That being said, I'm going to pick one up for it and find out for myself. I suspect Kel-Tec will honor their warranty if it breaks just like they did in the thread I read.

I appear to have a Generation 2 with some minor modifications.

Fred Fuller
September 21, 2013, 11:20 PM
Go take a basic shotgun class with it and report back...

lobo9er
September 21, 2013, 11:46 PM
Cant wait for range report and month from now report. Handled one at LGS seemed cool just not for me. GO SHOO00OT HER!!!!!

Centurian22
September 21, 2013, 11:57 PM
Very interested in the range report also. They look / seem cool but I haven't gotten to handle one yet. Also what was the general price range you paid if you don't mind sharing.

M2 Carbine
September 22, 2013, 12:24 AM
Mine was a thousand bucks.

Basically the gun will do anything that any 18 inch cyl bore pump gun will do and it does it in a 26.5 inch package, with room to hang iron sights, lasers and lights.

It holds 19 2 inch buckshot shells or 15 2 3/4 inch shells.

http://i1183.photobucket.com/albums/x464/Bell-helicopter-407/KelTecKSGsideview2_zpsf78dd389.jpg (http://s1183.photobucket.com/user/Bell-helicopter-407/media/KelTecKSGsideview2_zpsf78dd389.jpg.html)


The only problems I've seen are operator error, such as short stroking the slide, holding the gun so the ejecting shell hits the shooter's arm and starting out with both magazines off.

The gun is a bullpup, not your Remington 870. There is a learning curve to get used to the gun.

I suspect as the gun comes into wide use minor problems will come up and be corrected. I also think Kel Tec will offer such as changeable chokes.


How so? Did a quick search and can't find updated info.
Call Kel Tec.

sappyg
September 22, 2013, 12:29 AM
Man.... Those are some great cellphone pics..... What cell phone are you using if you don't mind my asking?

zoom6zoom
September 22, 2013, 02:53 AM
It holds 19 2 inch buckshot shells or 15 2 3/4 inch shells.
or 24 of the Aguila Mini Shells.

HKGuns
September 22, 2013, 09:15 AM
Also what was the general price range you paid if you don't mind sharing.

$850ish....

What cell phone are you using if you don't mind my asking?

Don't mind at all, iphone5....Too bad I don't have my "real" camera or you'd be seeing polymer atoms!

The only problems I've seen are operator error, such as short stroking the slide

Yep, I fiddled with it some more in the basement last night and you're right....The short stroking is operator error because of the difference in length between it and a "normal" pump. You lose some leverage and it is so compact it is quite a bit of a different movement to master. I think I'm going to install a forward grip on mine and see if that helps me learn to operate it faster. The more I practiced the better I got. I can "almost" cycle it 100% at this point.

M2 Carbine
September 22, 2013, 09:23 AM
or 24 of the Aguila Mini Shells.
Yes, I'll have to try them first chance I get.
I shoot other Aguila but haven't tried the Mini shells.

The two inch are made by a Italian company called Centurian, Law Enforcement. Six 00 Buckshot at 1250 FPS.

Trouble is the only place I ever saw them is Cheaper Than Dirt and they aren't getting them any more. Now days they would be too expensive anyhow.

jehu
September 22, 2013, 09:43 AM
I got one in July and it would not cycle properly. What I thought was my fault of short stoking was really the lifters not feeding the shell to the chamber properly and hanging up. I talked to a CS rep at Keltec and he knew what needed to be done as if they seen the problem before. So I sent it to them and after a month it came back and works great. The thing will kick the snot out of you with heavy loads but I installed a Alumalite muzzel break and a slip on Limbsaver recoil pad which tammed the recoil nicely.15rds of #4 buck is awesome fire power for HD and this KSG will replace the Rem. Marine Magnum 870 that use to fill that role. The KSG is a really inovative design that I think will be copied and maybe improved upon. The only thing about it that I don't like is the rear downward ejection but I really don't know anyother way they could have done it with this design. They need to make one in 20ga for women, IMO. just my .02.:eek:

HKGuns
September 22, 2013, 10:02 AM
The best part for me is that it is an SBR without all of the paperwork and tax stamp. In actuality it is smaller, more concealable and maneuverable than a "regular" SBS. I've read nothing but good things about Kel-Tec CS. The only other product of theirs that I own is my little P-32 which has never had any issues.

A question for you guys that own one.....I obviously need sights. Being it is a shotgun, is a regular AR style front sight enough or do you need front and rear? I really don't think I want to spend money on an optic at this point for it.

jehu
September 22, 2013, 12:52 PM
I put the Magpul flip up front and rear sights on mine and a Magpul vertical foregrip all the way to the front of the underside rail and it really makes for a very positive pump. I also put a surefire flashlight offset on the top rail. I'll try and post a picture if I can figure out how.

HKGuns
September 22, 2013, 09:13 PM
Thanks, I picked up a set of Troy "HK" folding micro sights and they appear to align well with my cheek resting on the gun. I also added a short Tango Down QD fore grip which really seems to help with racking the slide back. Next I'll have to figure out a good mount for an offset light.

Arizona_Mike
September 23, 2013, 02:50 AM
Where can I actaully find one? I've had their little 7.62 bullpup rifle on backover for about a year now with Impact Guns out of Utah and am still told I'm second in line/

Could I possibly buy the thing right now ffor $850 or even $1000?

Mike

M2 Carbine
September 23, 2013, 02:43 PM
Could I possibly buy the thing right now ffor $850 or even $1000?
Not likely that you can find one and if you do it will probably be a good bit over $1,000.

The local gun store just happened to get one. The only reason they sold it to me for $1,000 is I buy a LOT of guns there. They wanted at least $1,500 for the gun and there were several people that wanted the gun.

BTW I was shooting it about an hour ago. The thing is impressive. :)

wally
September 23, 2013, 03:02 PM
$850ish....

At that price I'd probably bite, but certainly not at the $1200-1500 I've seen around here at gun shows.

Arizona_Mike
September 23, 2013, 03:04 PM
Not likely that you can find one and if you do it will probably be a good bit over $1,000.

The local gun store just happened to get one. The only reason they sold it to me for $1,000 is I buy a LOT of guns there. They wanted at least $1,500 for the gun and there were several people that wanted the gun.

BTW I was shooting it about an hour ago. The thing is impressive. :)
Well, I understand luck. I got one of the first S&W M&P 10s by being in the right place at the right time.

Mike

HKGuns
September 24, 2013, 12:13 PM
I too got lucky and was in the right place at the right time. I also do a LOT of business with my LGS and was looking at a UTS they had on the shelf and casually mentioned I was more interested in the KSG. The guy I know well disappeared for a while and walked back and offered me a deal on a KSG they had sitting in the back.

Apparently it was a special order and the buyer backed out. They offered me the gun and the deal because I spend a lot if money with them and it cleared the item from their inventory.

PabloJ
September 25, 2013, 11:16 AM
There are far too many screws and parts in that gun. I found 12ga Model 12 26" IC shotgun in excellent condition for $400. A far more useful and proven design. What is truly amazing is that gun is as useful today as 60 years ago when it was made. Very fearsome weapon with 2&3/4" Tn/Fe/Ni SG or No. 4 BK shot loads.

While it's still a bit early I will admit the KSG make much better Halloween prop.

Uniquedot
September 25, 2013, 02:25 PM
It would surely take me some serious training with something like this or I'd surely be killed by the perp. I'm sitting here looking at this thing shaking my head wondering how in the heck it could possibly come into play as swiftly as a standard 18" barreled wingmaster. I can perhaps see using it to guard an entry/exit, but in a situation where speed of swing is needed I just don't see me being able to do it with one of these.

Ranger Roberts
September 25, 2013, 04:12 PM
I don't own a KSG, but one of the guys in my dept does. We've taken it out to the range a few times over the last year or so and it is a lot of fun! It takes a little getting used to, but all new things do. If I came across a deal like the OP did, I probably would have jumped on it as well. Have fun with it!

daehawc
September 25, 2013, 07:37 PM
I owned a KSG for a few weeks. Never had a chance to get to the range with it but did get some time to play with the manual of arms. Build quality on mine (newest version, manufacutered in March) was excellent. Some redesigns had been incorporated to solve some of the initial issues.

The biggest complaint I heard of and could see as being a slight issue was that the gun required a very positive motion to fully cycle. If you tried to cycle it gently, the last quarter inch of travel would fail to load the next round. Putting a stubby vertical grip seemed to be the best bet as it made it easier to avoid short stroking. Also, the stubby grip placed less torque on the lower rails avoiding the inherent weakness of the plastic rails.

Initially, my intent was to run one tube with slugs and one with buck. In handling the weapon I could see that trying to be selective would be more involved than I would want to mess with during a stressfull event. I think the main strength is just having 14+1 in the gun.

Overall, I think its a great, innovative design that would take a little dedication to learn a unique manual of arms but would be worth the effort.

I only bought and sold it as a step in getting a weapon I was speciffically looking for. If I ran into one in the 700-800 price range, I would pick it up in an instant.

JShirley
September 27, 2013, 04:46 PM
After watching a whole team of KelTec SMEs fail to get their KSG running on the most important day of the year, I'd definitely shoot it a lot before trusting it.

John

HKGuns
September 28, 2013, 10:44 PM
I took it to the range today. I had one interesting failure on the second round fired. It would not eject the spent hull, locked up tighter than a drum and I had to disassemble in order to get it to eject.

Once I got it back together I ran off another 10 shots without any further issues. I was shooting Winchester 1600 FPS defense slugs and limited my shooting because I was on the 100 yard Range, the only one open at the time. I wanted to use the 50 yard range to sight it in but it was closed for an event. Even at 100 yards I was able to put them right on the target without issue. I ran slugs out of both magazines and had no issues with feeding or ejection after the initial trouble.

There is a lot of cheek slap due to the way you mount the gun.

I will need an event less range trip or two to build up some confidence after that initial failure.

PabloJ
September 29, 2013, 09:41 AM
After watching a whole team of KelTec SMEs fail to get their KSG running on the most important day of the year, I'd definitely shoot it a lot before trusting it.

John
I would not trust that "Pandora's Box" full of moving parts no matter how much I have shot it. There are too many parts in that thing.

daehawc
September 29, 2013, 10:01 AM
I would not trust that "Pandora's Box" full of moving parts no matter how much I have shot it. There are too many parts in that thing.
The KSG doesnt really have that many more moving parts than any other pump shotgun. The Mag tubes and switching for them are standard with a lever to block off the unused tube, and you have linkage from the trigger to the hammer.

I'm sure they had some issues at the beginning. Any gun can have issues. Add in that its a completely new design and there are some growing pains. That said, they seemed to get the problems worked out quickly and those who've fired them seem to love them.

Again, I owned one but never fired it. I was personally impressed with the build quality.

Torian
September 29, 2013, 10:06 AM
I want one just because I don't have one. How does this handle magnum loads or slugs? Recoil managed any better or worse than a 870?

CHighfield
September 29, 2013, 11:12 AM
I'm loading one tube with six 3" 00 Buck and one tube with six 3" slugs.

Be careful with loading different loads into the tubes. It isn't as bad with loading two lethal types like slug and buckshot, but it could still be problematic.

I've heard people say "OH, COOL! You could, like, load one tube with lethal and one tube with, like, non-lethal!"

only problem with this is you switch tubes to NON-LETHAL and forget to rack out the LETHAL slug in the chamber and you accidentally kill someone/something.

With your setup you'll just kill something either way haha

HKGuns
September 29, 2013, 07:15 PM
I would not trust that "Pandora's Box" full of moving parts no matter how much I have shot it. There are too many parts in that thing.

Pablo, it isn't that different than any other pump other than where things are laid out. In fact, with the takedown pins I'd venture to say it has fewer parts and screws and things.

Be careful with loading different loads into the tubes. It isn't as bad with loading two lethal types like slug and buckshot, but it could still be problematic.

Good point. I have no plans to put anything non lethal in this particular gun.

HKGuns
September 29, 2013, 07:17 PM
Torian, I would imagine the recoil is worse than the 870 with anything because of the cheekweld and it being lighter weight overall.

3212
September 29, 2013, 08:41 PM
I just put my 1956 model 12 12Ga,26 in,modified in the corner next to my bed.00 buckshot converts it from my bird gun to HD.

CharlieDeltaJuliet
September 29, 2013, 08:58 PM
I put a lot of thought and time into the KSG. I determined it wasn't the right shotgun for me. I honestly think the design is solid but I have seen too many Kel-Tec issues for my liking. I had a buddy who had to ship his SU2000 back three times to finally get the thing to feed and run properly. He loves it now and it runs great now. I just think they have too many QC issues for me.

That being said the market is right for a high cap shotgun. A semi auto may be too much to ask and the rotating magazine extensions are not for me either.

If Kel-Tec can get their issues fixed, then I would be the first to be an owner. I would want to put a few hundred rounds through one to trust it.

barnbwt
September 29, 2013, 11:01 PM
That being said the market is right for a high cap shotgun. A semi auto may be too much to ask and the rotating magazine extensions are not for me either.
I suppose the high asking prices for these guns suggest that. I have no clue what the KSG is supposed to do that other guns can't, but they are cool and marketable as hell, and to stand out in a field as crowded and resistant to change as the pump shotgun world is truly an accomplishment. I've always been befuddled that Keltec didn't do it's high cap shotgun concept as a semi. Putting aside the question of whether or not 14 rounds is practical for any use, that many pumps is definitely asking a bit much compared to a semi-auto action. There's a reason why manual cycling arms don't normally go above about 10 rounds (and bolt actions are much easier to cycle than a shotgun forearm ;) ). A semi auto KSG would be one scary force to be reckoned with :evil:

TCB

jehu
September 30, 2013, 07:41 AM
In todays world of random home invasions where 3-5 young men are comming thru the door , it is comforting to have 15rds avalible.:banghead:

Blacksmoke
September 30, 2013, 09:49 PM
All that is good and I applaud your skills and perseverance in mastering that weapon. Truly.

As for me, I have my Stoeger coach gun...

Let's see, barrel A or barrel B?

That is about as much as I can handle. Although I did drag the Mossberg 535 out after a bear demolished a neighbor's freezer over the weekend.

I am in awe of these modern dual magazine shotguns.

DammitBoy
September 30, 2013, 10:11 PM
I'm sticking with my Benelli M1 super 90 and eight rounds

Justin
September 30, 2013, 10:29 PM
The KSG is an awesome concept, and one that I hope leads to further refinements and developments from other companies.

Setting aside for a moment the reported reliability issues with the KSG, the one thing I am fundamentally unimpressed with is how dexterity-intensive it is to reload the gun. With a bit of practice, using the weak-hand technique, I've reloaded a traditional shotgun with eight rounds in ~9 seconds.

From what I've seen, in order to reload the KSG, you have to reach way up into the receiver to load it, and it doesn't seem like any of the traditional techniques for quickly reloading a shotgun would work, and I'm unaware of any new techniques that make reloading the KSG as fast as or faster than reloading a traditional semi-auto or pump gun.

While this may seem like nitpicking, I think it's very important for a couple of reasons.

1.) Reloading tube-fed shotguns is the most labor- and coordination-intensive reloading action done for any of the three major types of gun (rifle, pistol, shotgun.)

2.) One of the advantages of the shotgun is the ability to load it with ammunition adapted to specialty needs, e.g., quickly executing an unanticipated select-slug drill.

Granted, these concerns are somewhat alleviated by the relatively high capacity of the KSG in the case of the first issue, and by loading one tube with, say, buckshot and the other with slugs in the case of the second. Still, regardless of the capacity of the gun, it is still limited, which means you have to reload sometime, and opting to use the tubes to categorize your ammunition is going to come with it's own issues, such as remembering which tube is which, and remembering to hit the selector, to say nothing of the fact that organizing your ammunition in the tubes effectively halves the amount of preferred ammunition you have loaded in the gun.

Don't get me wrong. I really like the idea of the KSG. Shotguns have noticeably lagged behind handguns and rifles in the development and adoption of new technologies that make the guns more user-friendly, and the KSG is a large step in the right direction, however, I don't the dual-tube/bullpup configuration is ready for prime time yet.

DNS
October 1, 2013, 02:54 AM
Interesting design and looks fun to play with but I'm thinking like most of Keltecs long arms its more of a niche piece.

As far as defending the castle from 3-5 home invaders; that's what my AR is for.

justice06rr
October 1, 2013, 04:57 AM
Thanks for the review and impressions. I think the KSG and other similar shotgun designs are cool, but warrants some refinement by the manufacturer and also requires the shooter plenty of practice before becoming proficient with its use.

I would buy one if offered a good deal on it as the OP, but its reliability and QC issues is what would hold me back from owning one. IMHO a Saiga12 or Benelli M4 would be a better option if you wanted a more proven and reliable and efficient high-capacity shotgun.

It remains to be seen how well Keltec will refine the KSG. I imagine they are not ramping up production to meet the demand in order to keep it a highly-sought shotgun, but also to fix the current issues that many owners seem to have with it.

evan price
October 1, 2013, 07:03 AM
KelTec makes some really cool range toys but here it is, how long since the PMR30, KSG and the RFB have been released? and I have yet to see one of any of them actually in the flesh anywhere- and I go to a lot of gun shows and gun stores. I did see a couple SU16s so those really do exist, and I own a Sub-2000.
What is it with Keltec and not being able to get product to the people?

As far as parts count- Lay out a Mossberg 500 next to a KSG and strip both of them.

If you need 15 rounds for home defence you live in the wrong neighborhood. KSG is a nice range toy. Not much else. Be the coolest guy on the firing line with a KSG for 50% over MSRP!

Yeah, I suppose I'm letting my Fudd flag fly here, but hey it looks really tacticool on the cover of the shooting magazines.

Justin
October 1, 2013, 10:15 AM
I love how even on a gun forum we have people willing to belittle other people's choice in guns because they think the gun's magazine capacity doesn't meet their arbitrary definition of 'reasonable.'

Sent from my SGH-T999 using Tapatalk 4

CharlieDeltaJuliet
October 1, 2013, 10:27 AM
Don't get me wrong, I love Kel-Tec's design, and their customer service is the best I have ever heard tell of. My buddy who has the SU2000 loves it. Kel-Tec gave him two extra magazines for his trouble. I am just afraid of the first gen KSG's and it would be my luck I got one with QC issues... That's why I said I would want to put a hundred or so rounds through them. I think once they catch up to the market they will be the best selling shotguns out. Kel-Tec just needs to expand their operations. Once they get their firearms out there they will be around for a long time to come.

I forget how many employees there were at their manufacturing facility, it wasn't many IMO. I love that they think outside the box and make firearms that are unique.

HKGuns
October 1, 2013, 09:30 PM
If you need 15 rounds for home defence you live in the wrong neighborhood. KSG is a nice range toy. Not much else. Be the coolest guy on the firing line with a KSG for 50% over MSRP!

Wow, aren't you full of opinion?

You'll be happy to know:

- I live in a very safe neighborhood.
- I paid less than MSRP.
- I was the coolest guy at the range long before I bought the KSG.
- Defence is properly spelled "Defense" in the USA (even oHIo).

You base your "range toy" statement on personal experience, or you're just popping off because it makes you feel better?

jojo200517
October 1, 2013, 09:56 PM
I really like the look of them and if they are still around in a couple years and the bugs have been worked out and someone makes a non polymer rail for them I might consider one if they are under $1k.

Thinking about the hand gaurd one of those modular designs like ATI has made for AR's and other shotguns would be nice I think.

As far as choke tubes I could really care less. It appears to pretty much be designed as a short range weapon not a bird hunting shotgun.

For now i'll stick with my 590a1 for home defense/fighting shotgun. I'm pretty confident in it and the manual of arms for it.

Girodin
October 2, 2013, 04:08 AM
I took it to the range today. I had one interesting failure on the second round fired. It would not eject the spent hull, locked up tighter than a drum and I had to disassemble in order to get it to eject

And that is why I don't say without qualification that I'd use a gun as an entry gun, or that a gun "will serve duty as my HD shotgun." until I've actually rung it out.


Hope that gets squared away for you.

I really would love to hear the thoughts of someone who has taken one through a quality shotgun course (I actually wonder if any such person exists).

evan price
October 2, 2013, 06:58 AM
My opinions are my opinions. Once the KSG is used in actual working conditions for a good long while and proves itself then it can justifiably be considered a good firearm. As right now there really aren't many out there, and even less put into stresful situations, how can we suddenly say this new gun is the absolute best for whatever application? That's gun-magazine fanboi stuff: Whatever is new MUST be better and awesomer!

And then it jams solid requiring disassembly on the second shot. Sounds like a perfect critical-duty hardware item. Not!

Same as the NEED to have a Mossberg 590A1, because the 590 has the polymer trigger guard, and without the metal trigger guard your shotgun is useless for home defense.

Is the KSG cool? Certainly. If money were no object it would be on the list of stuff that would be neat to have, along with a belt-fed.

As to 15 rounds for HD being extreme- I stand behind that. We are not kicking in doors in Mogadishu. There's nothing wrong with having something because you want it- that's the American way. Just say you want it. I've got no problem with AK drums or high capacity magazines.

But to justify your decision by saying "Well I *need* 15 rounds of buckshot in the gun for home defense!"

Really? If your basic need for home defense includes 15 rounds of buckshot on a regular basis I suggest moving away from the Hellmouth.

So we have a new firearm, largely unproven, which has still recently demonstrated unreliability, and is still not available to most people due to limited production.

On the cover of "Best Guns Evar !!1!" magazine, today.

jehu
October 2, 2013, 11:16 AM
I don't see alot of difference in the guy who has a HD 870 loaded with 7 and a side saddle with 5 and the guy who has 15 already in his KSG. Neither is extreme IMO.:what: Is the guy who has a 30rd mag in his AR for HD extreme?

mac66
October 2, 2013, 01:55 PM
I am not very big on fancy smancy hi-tech stuff but the KSG is pretty cool and I would love to have one just to play with. I have a couple of Kel tec pistols and never had any problems with them. Currently I have a couple shotguns (and 870 and a Mossberg 500) which are used for everything from bunnies to bears. My range toy shotgun is a Saiga 12 which I converted to a pistol grip config and uses long mags and drums, tons of fun with that beast. But yeah a KSG would be fun to have as well. :D

Fred Fuller
October 2, 2013, 03:01 PM
I still have no personal experience with the KSG other than handling one at my last shotgun class (Awerbuck), back in Sept. last year. Here's what I noted at the time fwiw:

The KSG was interesting, the first one I've seen for real. I'd say is just too complex for most folks, especially those already accustomed to other shotguns. Not just IMHO, but Louis thinks so too, and he's shot one (I haven't, I just watched when I could in class). Too many controls, too many options (two magazine tubes and a magazine selector to choose between them), just too much to keep track of under pressure. And mainly, the worst thumbs down of all for me from the getgo, it's too hard to load on the fly, since it's a bullpup and the loading port is behind the pistol grip. I had a bullpup for years, a semiauto at that, a High Standard 10-A. Sold it, but bought another example a couple of years ago. Great shotgun - for five rounds. Then forget it, dump it and go to something else.

Same deal with the KSG - if your gunfight is shorter than 15 rounds, and you can remember how to run the gun through a mag change without something bad happening, you're golden. -- http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=676207

The KSG I saw in a fellow student's hands was still fairly new to him, IIRC he said he'd put 200-300 rounds through it before the class. While it didn't give him any trouble as far as reliability was concerned, it was a hassle setting up the ammo load for the different drills as they were called. As indicated earlier, if the ammo load is set up as you're willing and able to use it it the outset, and your gunfight is short enough, it will do.

As for me, I can empty six or seven rounds out of a conventional pump in less time than it takes to tell it, and being able to keep the gun fed on the fly is critical as far as I'm concerned. And that's the downfall of the KSG in my stodgy old eyes. It's just too hard to load quickly. I'm of the "no magazine is ever big enough" school, I'm biased in that regard and perfectly willing to admit it. I want a fighting shotgun that's easier to load as required, even if only one round at the time.

The KSG definitely has advantages, its shortness being chief among them. The student referred to here had bought his KSG with the intent of using it as a defensive shotgun on his boat, and it should be useful in that role. He also planned to keep it loaded with slugs, which would simplify the ammo hassle for him. And as with any other shotgun, it takes trigger time to learn the controls on a new shotgun and 'groove' their use. That's no small investment in time, effort and ammunition, but it's one a serious user will be willing to make.

Learning to use the magazine selector with its center cutoff position shouldn't be that big a deal, and learning the sequence when running one tube empty shouldn't be a big deal either once operation of the shotgun becomes reflexive. A CLICK on an empty chamber in the KSG is followed by SWITCH TUBES then by ACTION RELEASE and PUMP to load a round from the second tube. That's not impossible to learn, just ... different. And it was different enough to flummox this student from time to time in class - because he had not yet had time to really learn to run the shotgun at an instinctive lesson. He didn't let it get to him however, and soldiered on with it in the face of Louis continuing to bark instructions.

I didn't get to take any of Louis' classes in either of his two 2013 visits to NC, unfortunately, and therefore didn't see this student (who is a regular in Louis' classes) this year to ask him about the KSG and how he's doing with it.

I'm looking forward to seeing a new generation of shooters out there using the KSG and other contemporary evolutions of the fighting shotgun. It's definitely going to be interesting, even if I'm too old a dog to try and learn new tricks :D.

Girodin
October 2, 2013, 04:01 PM
Thanks for the insights Fred. I do have a question relating to your major critique of the KSG, the difficulty of keeping it fed. I believe that loading and ammo management are the key skills to have to use a shotgun to its full potential. You mentioned the KSG might work if the gun fight was short enough. This makes me curious how much ammo you keep handy on your gun? What I often see is that people have a gun that holds 7-8 shots and then a side saddle that holds 4-7 rounds. I personally like the Velcro set ups that allow one to swap the cards quickly. If one had a 8 shot gun and a 7 shot side saddle that is 15 rounds, if we add a two shell holder fore of the ejection port (a set up I like) one would have 17. One could use a speed feed stock and have a couple more rounds (I don’t do the butt cuffs as I don’t like the way they interfere with a cheek weld when I transition to my support side shoulder) I’m just not sure there is a very practical way to carry more than about that many rounds on a traditional gun. More typically I see about seven in the gun and 5 on the side.

When one gears up for class it’s typical to have a few shell caddies or a number of extra esstac cards, or some other means of carrying additional ammo. When one grabs the HD gun I wonder how much extra ammo one is going to have aside from what is in/on the gun. Some people keep “war belts” nearby, others have plate carries, etc. I tend to doubt that most folks do. Nor is there any assurance one will be able to done it. If one is only going to have 15 or so rounds, there is an argument having them in the gun is a more useful spot.

I’m a all other things being equal more rounds is better kind of guy. I do think that more rounds doesn’t per se trump all other considerations. Or put another way, all other things are often not equal. For example, I have 20 round drums for the saiga, but I think the weight and girth maybe do not make it the best choice for a fighting gun (much the same for a beta mag in an AR, or an xrail on any number of shotguns). In a similar vein I don’t think the extra 7 rounds inside the gun one the KSG make up for some of its other cons, such as the stout recoil and added complexity. In HD scenarios, I’m more concerned with being able to fire a few shots as quickly and accurately as possible than I about with having 15 shots to fire. I also prefer things to be simple. As such I’ll take a good semi auto for a fighting shot gun.

I've owned a couple bullpups and I do like them and the way they handle. That said I am not overly concerned with the length of a 18” shotgun or a 16” carbine. If I really was and wanted an “exotic” I’d go with a saiga or MKA 1919 SBS. OAL on an 8" saiga SBS is about 29". This can go slightly up or down depending on the stock one uses and whether or not a muzzle device of some sort is on the gun. It still holds up to 21 rounds and reloads pretty quickly. But that is just me and I do have a lot of time on those platforms and live in a free state. For most people if they are going to drop $1k on a shotgun they’d probably be hard pressed to do better or get something that truly is more useful than a benelli.

redbone
October 2, 2013, 08:38 PM
I'm old fashioned, I guess. Still like an 870.

Fred Fuller
October 2, 2013, 09:03 PM
For my own defensive shotguns I prefer an 18-18.5" 870 with sights and a factory 2-round extension, with a 12.5" LOP stock. I keep magazines loaded one down with buckshot, so there are five rounds in the magazine. And six rounds of Brenneke KOs in the Sidesaddle, for 11 rounds in/on the gun total. My guns were all bought used and cost $200 or less initially.

And there's a claymore bag hung over the stock of the one that is most handy most of the time. That one is propped muzzle down, with 20 rounds of buckshot in the right pocket of the bag and 20 rounds of slugs in the left.

Realistically most fights where a shotgun is involved are over with one solid hit. But Murphy lurks, and the 870 is the go-to long gun here most of the time because it's what I'm closest to most of the time.

I freely admit to being a stuck-in-the-mud oldphart, with a deep seated preference for the 870 that grows out of about 40 years off and on (mostly on) of use. That doesn't meant there aren't better shotguns out there, and it certainly doesn't mean there aren't better shotgunners than me either. But I know what works for me...

CAPTAIN MIKE
October 7, 2013, 07:37 PM
I've grown frustrated trying to buy one. The Kel-Tec rep told me at the SHOT Show they were accelerating production, but after 10 more months of looking I still don't have one. Okay - I'm pouting now.

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