suggestions for a first shotgun


March 19, 2014, 12:57 PM
I would like some suggestions on a first shotgun. I will be hunting mostly turkeys and partridge and want either a pump or a semiauto. Also prefer a camo stock and want to keep it under $1000. Any suggestions? Thanks.

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March 19, 2014, 02:00 PM
The two usual suspects.

Mossberg 500 or Rem 870 Turkey gun.

Then buy a extra 26" vent rib barrel for upland game.

Or just use the turkey barrel and put a different choke tube in it.

You can buy them both for a thousand dollars total!


Rusty Luck
March 19, 2014, 02:20 PM
To get some more narrowed down choices you really need to figure out if you want semi-auto or pump. Both have great options and choices and have their merits and drawbacks.

March 19, 2014, 03:48 PM
I still have my first shotgun, I got it when I was about 9 ?...

"IF" I was getting a "first" shotgun, I'd get something REALLY well built and really nice, that fit me well, then I'd keep it forever!

Why really nice? Because then you will use it often for years and years, instead of trading it off or putting it in the back of a closet, because you have traded up!


March 19, 2014, 03:50 PM
Second the 870. I've had one since I was a kid and still have one today as well as my boys.

March 19, 2014, 04:05 PM
Maybe a Wingmaster, but I would not recommend their cheaper Express. Another few to consider are the Ithaca and Browning pumps, the Remington 1100 and a good condition, but used, Beretta in the 390/391 series. Those should all be under $1K and last you several lifetimes without issues

March 19, 2014, 04:15 PM
My first shotgun is an 870, 870 express, more specifically. So far it's been a fine gun.

March 19, 2014, 09:48 PM
Gently used M2

March 19, 2014, 10:12 PM
I have hunted with 870's for more than 45 yrs., still haven't had, one wear out yet. I have a Wingmaster that is over 35 yrs. old, my Son has one that is more than a decade older than that, both shoot as sweet and slick as can be.

I also have one of their older budget models from the mid 80's, it's not even branded as an 870, I think it has Special 12 or something like that on the receiver, but it's an 870. That one is still shooting well, I've killed a couple dozen turkey and countless upland game birds with it.

I also have several other variations of 870's, mostly newer, but all shoot very well, and probably will for another generation or two I suspect.

OTOH, I've had a couple 500's that developed problems within the first year or two of general hunting use. I don't think the 500 is as hardy a shot gun as an 870.


Ed Ames
March 19, 2014, 10:26 PM
If you can afford it, see if any local skeet/sporting clays ranges have instructors who can help you with your mount, and address fit. Around here you can take lessons and the range provides loaner Berettas for example. Once you know how to mount the gun, head over to your local gun store and try every shotgun they have in your budget. Go to several shops if there is a chance they will have different guns. It is much cheaper/easier to find something that is very close and tweak it slightly, than to buy something completely wrong and pay to have it cut down/spaced out/whatever to work well for you.

Then, once you have your choices narrowed down to a top one or two, do some research/ask for opinions on the specific gun(s) you are considering.

March 20, 2014, 04:28 AM
Beretta A300 Outlander Camo semi auto less than $800 OTD Best bang 4 ur buck.

March 20, 2014, 05:28 AM
Mine's an 870 but my friends camo Versa is one terrific auto. Its the maximum of your price range though.

March 20, 2014, 11:18 AM
Since you have a decent budget to work with, I would go with an auto. The Beretta A300, Browning Silver, and Winchester SX3 are all excellent shotguns. Nothing wrong with pumps, I own several. I have never heard someone with an auto say "I wish I would have bought a pump".

March 20, 2014, 12:28 PM
I have a Wingmaster bought new in 1968. By FAR my favorite shotgun for upland. But if you are wanting a gun for both turkey and partride, and a semiauto platform, I would look at the new Versamax, SX3 or a used Benelli M2. But it's gotta fit you. Name means nothing when that gun doesn't shoulder or point well for you. And if you are wanting a pump, you might check out the Winchester SPX3. It's a "hybrid" pump. I know, it sounds weird. But check it out. Light, fast follow ups, and inexpensive. I would mention my Nova, but it's kinda heavy for partridge, for most people. Great for turkey though.

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