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Fighting shotgun setups: 500/590's & 870's (Pics welcome)

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by DustyGmt, Sep 3, 2022.

  1. Dunross

    Dunross Member

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    I like wood and leather so this one gets the job done for me. It's a 20ga because my family needs to be able to use it. I live in the country so need a light to be sure I'm shooting a coon not the neighbor's cat if it's dark. Twenty inch barrel with choke tubes and rifle sights Six rounds of low-recoil home defense #3 buck in the tube. The cuff holder has three rounds of #1 buck in case I need to step outside where I might need more penetration and/or range. The remaining three are slugs.

    IMG_20220430_205027707~3.jpg
     
  2. luzyfuerza

    luzyfuerza Member

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    @rabid wombat , have you ever considered an Ithaca 37 or a Browning BPS (pretty much the same action)?

    Put hook-n-loop on both sides of the receiver. Keep the ammo card near the gun. If your wife needs it, she can slap the shot card on the left side; visa versa for you.
     
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  3. Hangingrock

    Hangingrock Member

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    My example of the Mossberg 590 has been around for a while. Modifications made more aggressive safety button, shell saddle mounted on the receiver, front night sight bead and sling swivels.
     
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  4. jdh

    jdh Member

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    All the years I was paid to carry a shotgun i was issued an 870. As such I am way more familiar with it BUT, I own a 590A1. So, one year just before annual qualification I had right rotor cuff surgery. Even though I had been cleared to return to duty I didn't want to take a chance so I shot the qual course left handed. I learned two things doing so. First the 870 safety sucks to work left handed. Second, our armorer was very miffed that I ripped his elastic butt cuff off after the first shot.

    After that experience and having taking some advanced defensive shotgun courses that taught there were times when it was best to shoot from your weak hand side (keeping most of your body behind cover shooting from the left side of the barricade for example) all the butt cuffs came off of my shotguns and side saddles replaced them. Keeping with the KISS principle the only thing added to the 590 is the side saddle. The home defense shotgun here does not get a sling/carry strap. The main reason being I'm not going to be doing run and gun in the house needing to transition between shotgun and handgun. There have been times when moving through the house (training and home alone while doing so) that the strap got caught on a door knob or the corner of a table or whatever. Stealth goes out the window at the point.

    I'll stop there for now.
     
  5. gralewaj

    gralewaj Member

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    My favorite HD 870 started life with me as a barreled receiver police trade in. Fresh re-park, rifle sighted Remington Police barrel, 870 Magnum receiver from the AK State Troopers.
    upload_2022-9-5_16-1-25.png
    I found a stock and fore end on eBay, its a 1970's 870 TB trap stock that was cut down poorly and an old corncob fore end. I had to square up the end cut and had a pad fitted. Other parts were eBay or GunBroker sourced spares. New springs where needed for reliability and a WC +2 mag tube extension. Heavy... but awesome!

    upload_2022-9-5_16-5-17.jpeg
    other piece is a CMP 1911, 1918 built Colt frame with an Ithaca slide. I thought they paired well together.

    IMG_1237.jpg

    Better view of the 870, with a 1987 Parkerized 11-87 behind it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2022
  6. gralewaj

    gralewaj Member

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    Newer 870s have a tab on the shell carrier, this is one part of the Flex Tab system. The bolt, slide and action bar also plays a role in this system. The bolt is machined for shell rim clearance and the tab flexes on the carrier enough to rerack the action and remove the stuck shell in a newer 870. If your HD 870 does not have the flex tab system installed, you should really consider doing it. 20ga 870s have enough clearance to clear a stuck shell without a flex tab system.

    JD explains below.

     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2022
  7. red rick

    red rick Member

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    I preferred the 870 when I bought mine years ago . It felt more balanced to me and all of my shotguns have the safety on the trigger , so there is nothing knew in a different gun to think about . I shoot buckshot and like a bead sight . The only thing that I changed was I put on a 13” LOP stock on mine and a metal follower . Mine is the 870 Police . I have 3 other 870 express models that I lend to new hunters when hunting with me . A4E32440-F6BE-487B-BBAC-175C948EBB60.jpeg
     
  8. rabid wombat

    rabid wombat Member

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    Yeppers…Ithaca would have to have been old school, as they had not been reborn at the time. The BPS was always a thought, but expensive. I just got used to the 500 / 590 and have been with them ever since. I have upgraded to O/U for fun now. Still have a stack of 500s and 1100’s for lending out or abusing.

    A quick aside - the old 37’s would slam fire. Hold the trigger back, and go to town. I surprised a group at a class knowing that little bit of trivia. Likewise, the Winchester 61 had the same ‘feature’….
     
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  9. SwampWolf

    SwampWolf Member

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    As did the Winchester Model 12 and Model 97, and likely others.
     
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  10. WrongHanded

    WrongHanded Contributing Member

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    I'm not entirely sure what the issue is supposed to be with shooting a 500/590 left handed. I'm left handed, and I've never had any kind of problems at all. A side saddle is tricky to get at with the right (non-dominant) hand, which is partly why I no longer use them. But other than that the design works just fine for me.

    Some long arms are easier to work left handed than other, based on where certain functions are located. Some are so awkward that I'd have serious reservations relying on them for defensive purposes. But the 500/590 is definitely not one of those designs.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2022
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  11. Dirtybob

    Dirtybob Member

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    Interesting video.
    Just had a look at my H&R Pardner chinesium 870 clone and it has all the upgraded parts, save the carrier...
     
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  12. gralewaj

    gralewaj Member

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    If an 870 Flex Tab carrier could be installed, I'd look into it asap
     
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  13. jdh

    jdh Member

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    Put the shells in brass down, reach under the receiver with the right hand, pull the shell from the side saddle, insert it in the mag tube.
    If you shot the gun dry and the action is open reach under the receiver, remove shell, cup it in the right hand, roll the gun slightly to the left, drop shell in the ejection port, move slide forward to close the action, continue as above until the mag is full or the side saddle is empty.

    (Another reason I had to learn to shoot the shotgun left handed as an instructor was to be able to demonstrate how to perform those functions to those officers who were left handed.)
     
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  14. WrongHanded

    WrongHanded Contributing Member

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    I appreciate the info, which I see comes with some experience to back it up.

    I had actually experimented with the side saddle concept quite a bit before I gave up on it. And I do recall trying the reach under method, I just didn't like it much. I never felt like I had enough control over the shell that way, and that they were always about to slip out of my grasp. It also felt a little awkward and reachy. Though I suppose if that's how a department issued shotgun came to me, I'd work with it.

    On the other hand, the Wilson Combat 2 shell belt holders work nicely for me. As does the fanny pack across the chest. And the gun stays lighter as a result, which I like.
     
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  15. rabid wombat

    rabid wombat Member

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    That is it in a nut shell. We left handers grow up in a right handed world. Things I hated growing up - spiral binders, scissors, desks…I take demented joy in watching a right handed person use left handed scissors…:evil:

    All that said…back to topic…define your needs, put together a package that fills the needs, get training, and practice (periodically reassess - does it still meet your needs) and know your limitations / experience…..form follows function. What works for me, may not work for you.
     
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  16. rabid wombat

    rabid wombat Member

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    Because I have not been trained in tactical shotgun use…reloading ‘on the clock’ is a WEAK skill set. Part of the reason I lean to the newer 590 and shorty shells. 10-13 onboard greatly reduces the skills needed. Also goes to defense in depth…..

    @jdh made a complex task very simple…great write up!
     
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  17. DustyGmt

    DustyGmt Member

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    I took both my 870 and my 590 out yesterday up into the woods on my in law folks property. I've got a lil shooting lane setup out there and since it was labor day and I had the day off, decided to do some practice. I brought 50 rds of #7.5 target loads, 20 slugs and 20 buckshot and decided to practice topping off and port loading from a side saddle and working with loose shells out of my pockets, it was pouring rain, and my guns and myself were drenched, along with the shells.

    If you never have, go out and try this, the shells become very slippery and I wound up dropping a few and most of my shooting was done while roving, good practice though. Working with wet slippery gear and shells. At least that's what I told myself. I told my wife I was bringing a couple shotguns with me and she looked outside like "ummm, OK :confused:" lol

    Added note: I think Winchester 00 buck is trash and probably always will. Every type of Winchester 00 I've ever tried has patterned like crap. I thought my 20" IC bbl on my 870 would pattern a lil better, really no difference between that and my cyl bore 590.

    IMG_20220906_104755.jpg IMG_20220906_104916.jpg I was at a distance of about 40' +/- a few feet.
     
  18. Rshooter

    Rshooter Member

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    Buffalo makes some reduced recoil shells that are spot on for me. I do not have a target anymore, but they group well. I use them for practice and then Hornady TAP for social uses.

    https://www.buffalocartridge.com/
     
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  19. SwampWolf

    SwampWolf Member

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    That's interesting. In my experience, the shell itself has little influence on the type of shot patterns you get. Barrels and chokes are what mostly determines the type of spreads you get from individual shotguns. But I have never fired, let alone tested patterns, on Winchester 00 buck shells.
     
  20. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

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    I use a Wingmaster 870 with synthetic furniture, a 6-shot sidesaddle, a +2 mag extension with a Wolff spring, and a Remington 20” cylinder choked barrel with rifle sights. I have a sling mounted if I need to use both hands for something..

    738D4D6F-5B32-4D02-B72A-FFC1D6198CBA.jpeg BA2F4235-C49F-4DA7-8E5A-83C178A7CCA4.jpeg

    Ammo is Federal #1 Buck, 6 in the magazine, 3 in the sidesaddle. The otter three are Winchester 1oz segmenting slugs.

    32E854FA-2420-423A-808B-FC5CEB4511EA.jpeg

    I’ve used 870’s and Benelli M1’s over the course of the past 31+ years, primarily the 870. They are just about second nature for me to operate so I stick with one for HD. I just hope I never, ever have to use it for that.

    Stay safe.
     
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  21. Boattale

    Boattale Member

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    This heavily modified 870 (factory bone stock w. 26" IC barrel) hangs above my bedroom closet door. Tube and cuff are both full of 2 3/4" 9 pellet 00 buck. I've had it about 40 years or so, hunted ducks, quail and rabbits with it a lot. The 870 manual of arms is second nature and the gun is 100 percent.

    870.jpg
     
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  22. crestoncowboy

    crestoncowboy Member

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    For a normal stock I prefer a mossberg or a Benelli For a pistol grip type I prefer a remington. The mossberg safety sucks with a pistol grip.
     
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  23. guyfromohio

    guyfromohio Member

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    Twenty years ago….not even a question….870. Today, I’m sold on the 590.
     
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  24. DustyGmt

    DustyGmt Member

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    And some upgraded pins in the receiver? That's an excellent setup, I love the older 20" IC rifle sighted brushmaster/police barrels, mag extensions on mine as well.

    I really do like my 870's better but I cant help but to like the 590/500. I'm usually a one or the other type guy, but there are attributes of the 590 that appeal to me as well and I don't have too much trouble differentiating between the "misplaced" controls when I pick the mossberg up. I give my 870's a lil more respect as well, and am a lil rougher on the 590.

    I think the 870's with the +2/+3 extensions, older wood police furniture with the ribbed forends and even the synthetic like you've got make for a very attractive looking fighting shotgun even if they do look very basic and utilitarian....
     
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  25. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

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    Yes indeed! Super basic in looks and feel, but very familiar in operation. :thumbup:

    Stay safe.
     
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