Winchester SXP defender opinions.


August 5, 2014, 02:34 PM
I'm in the market for a home defense shotgun. I recently looked at Sxp, 870, mossy 500, Stevens 320,pardner pump and mossy 590. To me the 590 is the ultimate, but more than I want to spend. I haven't been able to handle an Armscor yet, but they look nice. The Winchester has the best finish and prolly the smoothest action of them all. If it was still made in New Haven we wouldn't be having this conversation. What do you guys think of them? Any owners here?

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August 5, 2014, 04:51 PM
IMO buy a used 1200 or 1300 if you want to go that route. For some reason the tarted-up new "SXP" line has proprietary accessories, stocks, barrels, etc. that none of the other 1200/1300 parts fit. Kinda sad, really. Good shotguns.

August 5, 2014, 05:12 PM
I have personally seen a multitude of Mossberg 500's take a lot of abuse and neglect from some of the Bubba's around here and they do an outright impressive job of keeping on.

The Maverick 88's are also worth mentioning.

I appreciate the lighter aluminum receivers in the 500's over the Remington's, but you must realize you're hampered with the factory magazine unless you find a factory extended version due to how the barrel attaches. Personally, I prefer how a 5+1 18.5" shotgun handles over the 8+1 20" barrel models so for me it's a non-start.

August 5, 2014, 07:43 PM
I have one and I enjoy it very much. I just went to the range today and shot another 15 slugs to first sight in and then use the new scope I just put on it this morning. It is strange to put a scope on a shotgun, but it shoots fine. Skinner sights might have done just as well...
Yes, it is the smoothest pump action I tried before buying, smoother than my friend's Benelli Nova. It handles well, is very easy to take apart for cleaning and to reassemble afterwards. It is light, but recoil is normally quite tolerable. I do not feel it when I shoot target loads, a little with standard 2 3/4" 00 buckshot and a little too much with the slugs. I guess I am more sensitive to recoil than I thought... :D Good thing a recoil pad is included with it.
And I like its looks. But that does not really matter. It shoots. Would I buy the same one today? Difficult question. I patterned some buckshot with it today: five inches spread at 25 FEET, eleven inches spread at 40'. I will have to try the FliteControl loads previously discussed on this forum. Although this spread would be close to perfection for HD in my place (small home) I do not intend to use the said shotgun for HD, but rather for hunting deer as a backup/runs weapon in combination with an adequate rifle for the task. So, the hideous stainless version of it might have been a better choice, because it is threaded for chokes. But still, the 28" barrel I should have at some point in an indefinite future (ordered December 20th, 2013) will be threaded for interchangeable chokes, so I do not loose everything for birds and clays.
I have cycled approximately two hundred rounds through it for now, maybe a little more, without a glitch. A mix of target, 00, 000 and slugs. All loads functioned fine. I personally think it is an excellent shotgun, but what do I know, I have been around rifles all my life and only recently developed interest for shotguns. Try one, see for yourself if you like it!

August 5, 2014, 09:18 PM
I think the SXP is a good shotgun. It shows that if the company keeps quality control tight the fact it's made in Turkey isn't an issue. But Remington and Mossberg account for 90 percent of sales and a comparable percentage of accessories. If you are looking for a lighter shotgun I would get the 500 because things like extra barrels are cheap and easy to find. A second barrel for a Benelli Nova costs as much as a new gun.

August 5, 2014, 09:52 PM
The Winchester 1200 was one of the first lower cost guns they introduced after ceasing production of the venerable Model 12, and it and the 1400 like to took them under. If you have one and like it, more power to you, but those two models had a world of issues. It evolved into the 1300, then the Speed Pump, and now the SXP. Each one has gotten a little better it seems, at least so far. Notably Remington and Mossberg got it right to start with and have changed the basic design hardly at all in over 60 years.

August 5, 2014, 10:07 PM
I actually have 2 1300's. A walnut deluxe 12ga that I've had for 20 years and a black shadow 20ga that I've had for about 15. They are great guns. My only complaint is the ugly choke tubes. I think they are under rated. When they came out everyone said they were junk because they were light with stamped parts. I think if the Model 12 came out today everyone would complain that its heavy and overbuilt.

August 6, 2014, 05:14 AM
While I was in college back in '83 I purchased a new Winchester Defender with the full length mag tube. I still have the shotgun and the hangtag...$199.00. It doesn't have a model number stamped anywhere on it, just "Winchester Defender 12 GA 2 3/4" & 3"". I shot the devil out of the thing the first few years I had it. Lived way out in the boonies, so I rigged up a scabbard on my dirt bike and carried it everywhere I went. Never had an ounce of trouble with the thing. That's been over 30 years ago and it still looks pretty darn good and runs like a top. That speed-pump feature sure helps you throw a lot of lead out there in a hurry, too. It has never let me down, and I would not hesitate to trust my life to it as a home defense gun.

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