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View Full Version : Mossberg 12 Guage or Remington 870 Express?


cornholio1
09-20-2006, 10:29 AM
Okay, guys. I need to make a decision w/o ever shooting the Remington 870, but I need to choose soon because I want to go hunting. I will either go for the Remington 870 Express for about $250 after rebate or the MOSSBERG 28” 12-GAUGE VENT RIB PUMP SHOTGUN COMBO for $209 at Big 5. The Combo comes with an extra 18.5” barrel and the Remington doesn’t come with any extras. Which do you guys prefer and why? I ask because most of the time you guy have awesome insight and I almost always get what I expect. Thanks.

timmy8151
09-20-2006, 10:57 AM
I own 2 mossbergs (590A1 and 500) and have been completely satisfied with them. My 500 is actually the combo from Big 5 and I think its a great value. There are people who will say Mossbergs are junk, but these people don't know what they're talking about.

I say get the Mossberg Combo since it gives you more options with your shotgun. Also if you don't need the 28" bbl you can sell it for about $75 to $100 and make back a good amount of money.

Danger Monkey
09-20-2006, 12:44 PM
I own both a 500 and a 870. The 500 has given me some issues although not major. The 500 combo is a good deal but the 870 is a better built gun imo.

socalsteve
09-20-2006, 12:56 PM
Go to the store and hold both guns, work the slide, check out the controls (safty, slide release, etc.)

I like the safty position on the Mossberg and the Rem 870 has the worst safty position for me - but it seems to have a smoother action than the mossberg - there is also the winchester 1300 in the same price range if you can find them and even the benelli pump.

If you are going to do a lot of different hunting it may be worth it to pay a little more upfront and get a shotgun that handles replaceable choke tubes.

But get the model that you can cycle the Action, bring to your shoulder and overall handle the best for you.

cornholio1
09-20-2006, 3:01 PM
Can I use different chokes in a Mossberg 500?

Japsican
09-20-2006, 3:19 PM
The 500 combo has a fixed modified choke...You can find a replacement barrel that has interchangeable choke threads. I think the 870 express is the same, but not sure...

cornholio1
09-20-2006, 3:23 PM
The 500 combo has a fixed modified choke...You can find a replacement barrel that has interchangeable choke threads. I think the 870 express is the same, but not sure...


Thanks Jap. Can I shoot clays and certain birds with the factory modified choke? I don't know if I need the option to have different chokes, but I do plan on hunting doves or quail.

Vigilante
09-20-2006, 10:39 PM
Can I shoot clays and certain birds with the factory modified choke? I don't know if I need the option to have different chokes, but I do plan on hunting doves or quail.

Yes you can shoot clays and almost any bird with a modified choke. They say that modified is the best all-around choke to have, that is if you are only going to have one choke. However, improved is ideal for dove and quail.

If I were you I would buy the remington w/ the screw in choke tubes, because it makes the gun more versatile. Also, I have never been impressed with mossbergs, mainly because of the cheap quality. That's not to say that they are bad guns, I'm just saying that the 870 is a better gun.

bubbagump
09-28-2006, 12:13 PM
They are both great shotguns. Get the one you like.

I have heard this debate over and over in many forums...

But it all comes down to what fits you best.

My first shotgun was a Mossberg 500. I bought it used. Its an old piece o' sh*t. Ugly as hell. But it does what it is supposed to and it does it well. I love it. I only paid 150 for it.

The 870 is also a great gun.

Both very reliable and will serve you for along time if you take care of them when needed.

I would go for the less expensive buy and save the rest of your money for another gun. This will serve you well meanwhile.

AxonGap
09-29-2006, 11:26 AM
I'll just cut and paste this one;

Get one of each!

mdhpper
09-29-2006, 11:32 AM
I had a Mossberg, its pretty much trash now. I got alot of use out of it, I enjoyed it until I started having problems with it. The slide would get hung up, and the single slide rail finally broke.

I recently purchased an 870 as a loaner for new shooters/ back up to use when I go hunting. The reason I picked the 870 over the Mossberg is because it has two rails.

Kestryll
09-29-2006, 12:37 PM
My Mossberg 500 has two rails, I don't think Mossy's have come with only one rail for years.

The Mossberg 500 is the same action as the 590 which was adopted by the U.S. Marines back in the 80's I believe.

The Remington 870 has seen sevice in Viet Nam and police cruisers across the Country.

Both are fine weapons and chances are either will serve you very well. There are some small differences however.

The Mossberg 500 series has a tang mounted sliding safety that is accessible with either hand with a regular stock on the weapon. If you add a pistol grip stock it gets a bit tricky to operate while holding the weapon. The slide release on a Mossy is behind the trigger guard to the right. The Mossberg 500 series has twin, claw-type, extractors and the shell elevator rides in the up position so as not to interfere with reloading the mag tube.

The Remington 870 series has a cross bolt safety mounted beind the trigger set up for right handed use. This system is more adaptable to pistol grip stocks. The slide releaase is on the left hand side at the front of the trigger guard. The 870 series has a single, claw-type, extractor and the shell elevator rides in the down position requiring it to be moved up while reloading the mag tube.

Each has much to recommend it, the best thing is to do what several others here have said. Go down to the store and try each one out for fit, function and ease of use. One may just feel better and that is the one to go with.

marklbucla
09-30-2006, 10:19 AM
I had both for awhile and debated between them for HD uses.

Weight: The mossberg is lighter than the 870

Safety: Mossberg is on top of the receiver, the 870 is on the trigger guard

Action: The Mossberg is not as smooth as the 870

Magazine: The Mossberg is fixed, but you'll be able to remove it and switch it out for a different length if you later decide. It's not easy, but it's not relatively difficult either. For the 870 if you want to add an extension later, you'll have to dremel out the dimples on the inside of the mag tube. It's not that hard and takes 15 mins. If you have problems later with the springs or wish to change the follower, you'll have a harder time to remove them from the Mossberg than the 870

Aftermarket Parts: Both have an abundance of them, but the 870 has more options.

Carrier: The mossberg has a carrier that "hides" when not in use. This makes the magazine loading area exposed all the time, so it's much easier to load it in a hurry. The 870 carrier is down all the time, so it gets in the way when you're trying to load through the bottom. I don't imagine this to be an issue if you're only interested in hunting.

I kept my 870 Express and changed it into an 870 HD because I like the smoother action and the abundance of aftermarket parts and accessories. I sold my 500A because I didn't need two shotguns anymore and a cop talked me out of it because the name "Persuader" wouldn't come across as well in court in a HD shooting.

rorschach
09-30-2006, 5:53 PM
Ford or Chevy??

I think Mossbergs feel tinny and loose in my hands. No doubt they can take much abuse, but I just prefer the 870.

Now I'm gonna throw in a Mopar: Ithaca M37. Great all around pumpgun. An an older M&P extended tube slamfire model loaded with 00 buck is truly devestating !!

M. Sage
09-30-2006, 6:05 PM
Ford or Chevy??

I think Mossbergs feel tinny and loose in my hands. No doubt they can take much abuse, but I just prefer the 870.

Now I'm gonna throw in a Mopar: Ithaca M37. Great all around pumpgun. An an older M&P extended tube slamfire model loaded with 00 buck is truly devestating !!

Bah, the M37 isn't the Mopar of the bunch. It's the Acura. :D

I like Mossbergs, too, but not as much as the Ithaca.

Have yet to try an 870... doh!

-hanko
09-30-2006, 9:38 PM
Bah, the M37 isn't the Mopar of the bunch. It's the Acura. :D
A used ithaca will be a better gun for birds (or just about any other need that doesn't require lights, lasers, folding stocks, breaching barrels, or other "tactical" crap to improve a mall ninja image:rolleyes: ). It's quicker to mount, points better and has a smoother action than the Moss or Remington. Ejection is out the bottom of the gun, so shells fall at your feet. Loading is easier as the carrier stays up. Safety is on the trigger guard, not hard to get used to but not as nice, imo, as the tang safety on the Moss. Spend a few seasons shooting birds with the Ithaca and you won't consider a substitute...smoothest pump around. Again, imo.:D

-hanko

metalhead357
10-01-2006, 3:13 AM
I own both a 500 and a 870. The 500 has given me some issues although not major. The 500 combo is a good deal but the 870 is a better built gun imo.

A-friggin'-men +10000000000, read my mind......:D

Boomer1961
10-01-2006, 9:42 PM
Why not do yourself a favor and buy both of them, then run them both for a while, then write a review of the two of them with pics including dis-assembly and publish it here and at other forums/gun web sites.

The thing that is hard to get over about the Mossberg though is

1) The Big 5 combo deal with both barrels at a price of the Express (the cheaper 870 but with that combat look finish). A similar setup with the express means purchasing a second barrel at $120-$150

2) The military, I believe all the branches now, have chosen the Mossberg action as the official shotgun. Very recently though this has changed to the newer combo pump auto but when they were choosing between the 870 and the Mossberg, they always chose the Mossberg.

So what did I do when I bought mine, well I got me an 870 Express. Only problem I had with it is the bolt action is not stainless/chromed like on the wingmaster and after leaving it in the back of the truck for a few months the extractor/bolt rusted up causing the extractor to freeze and not function. A few hours downloading the dis-assembly manual, taking it apart carefully, polishing it up, solved this problem. When I had searched the Internet about this I did find this to be a common problem for the Express over the 870 for those who did not keep their weapon clean/dry-but not a problem if you took proper care of your shotgun.

When I bought mine I was under the wrong impression that the 590 (military approved model) was significantly different and even read an article where they said the 590 was an improvement over the 500 because of the double bar action, better safety, and special improvements requested by DOD. Goes to show you not to trust everything you read on the Internet as nearly none of that was true except for some minor details such as the type of finish and site that the military requested on the 590 which was different than the 500.

The biggest selling point for me on the 870 at the time of my purchase was that the Remchoke was fully developed and sold on even their discounted $229 Kmart special while the Mossberg specials including the two barrel special at Big 5 (yes they had those going back way back then which was like 14 years ago) had only fixed chokes. I figured back then I would have to buy special barrels for the Mossberg with screw in chokes because all the discounted ones that were advertised on those specials had fixed chokes or buy a more expensive Mossberg 500 that was offered with the screw in chokes but at a price that was a bit higher than the 870 Express with their Remchoke. I think this has changed but I have not looked at these Mossbergs for sometime so maybe someone can chime in on specific knowledge of if those Mossberg deals like at Big 5 include barrels with screw in chokes.

I am not disappointed with my purchase but if I did it again and the Mossberg 2 barrel special included screw in chokes I think I would pick that one due to the $150 or so in savings.

There is one item I do have for my 870 that I really like and only recently seen for sale for the Mossberg, at least in quality, and that is the top folding "POLICE" stock. That was another factor as at that time I had no interest in any of the side folding stocks as they looked cheesy and the two top folders offered by aftermarket folks for the Mossberg were really cheap. At the last couple of gun shows though I have seen what looked exactly like the same Remington "POLICE" top folding stock on Mossbergs so obviously someone is now offering this.

Also since I have this military bug about my firearms to the point of keeping them as true to military issue at the sacrifice of user friendliness I think I would try to get me a Mossberg setup that would allow me to configure to military spec. but of course with the other accessories/barrels/stocks to configure for sporting use.

Oh, another thing is I have been thinking about adding somemore chokes to my collection as those with the muzzle brakes sure look impressive and mean looking though then again they would add length to my short barrel which would kind of defeat the purpose of a short barrel.

Tough call on this one. Are blondes better than Brunettes? who knows? Just tell me which gal can suck a softball through a 100' garden hose, thats the gal I want.:D

M. Sage
10-01-2006, 9:56 PM
A used ithaca will be a better gun for birds (or just about any other need that doesn't require lights, lasers, folding stocks, breaching barrels, or other "tactical" crap to improve a mall ninja image:rolleyes: ). It's quicker to mount, points better and has a smoother action than the Moss or Remington. Ejection is out the bottom of the gun, so shells fall at your feet. Loading is easier as the carrier stays up. Safety is on the trigger guard, not hard to get used to but not as nice, imo, as the tang safety on the Moss. Spend a few seasons shooting birds with the Ithaca and you won't consider a substitute...smoothest pump around. Again, imo.:D

-hanko

Mine was great, even with a lot of slop in the slide.

I liked the trigger guard safety, actually. It was easy to flip off as I put my finger in the trigger guard, the biggest advantage I found to the tang safety on my Mossberg was that it was easier to tell if it was on when you had the shotgun shouldered.

Bottom-eject could be funky. If I ejected an unfired shell, it tended to hit me in the chest (not that you'll be doing that often.)

I hunted deer, birds and rabbits with mine.. and miss it a lot, even if I DID manage to trade a slightly beat-up and fairly worn shotgun for a very nice M1 Carbine...

rorschach
10-01-2006, 10:56 PM
2) The military, I believe all the branches now, have chosen the Mossberg action as the official shotgun. Very recently though this has changed to the newer combo pump auto but when they were choosing between the 870 and the Mossberg, they always chose the Mossberg.

Yes, and when they had the chance to go with the SIG226, they went with the Beretta. When they had the chance to go with the superior HK21E, they still kept the M60. Always remember your weapon was made by the lowest bidder. BTW, Marines are also using Benelli's too now.

Just tell me which gal can suck a softball through a 100' garden hose, thats the gal I want.:D

No argument there brother!

ZapThyCat
10-01-2006, 11:23 PM
I'd spring for the mossberg. That way it's a good regular shotty, and home defense shotty as well.

Or... get them both!

CalNRA
10-12-2006, 1:17 AM
one thing to complain about the safety on the 500:

while I love the safety in the field with the refular stock, if you ever use a pistol grip(with stock or not) you have to take your hands off the grip to engage/disengage the safety. then again the Mossbergs were not designed to appeal to the tactical crowd in the most part and it reflects the market's demand. It works the way it was intended to in the field.

other than that it's a tossup for me. I will get a 8-shot 870, but for now the 6-shot 500 would have to do(plugged to 3 if you are in the field)

sargenv
10-12-2006, 7:15 AM
I own both models. I prefer the 870 since the mag tube can be added to unlike the Mossy. I have an older Wingmaster built on the 12 gauge frame (it's a 20). It held the standard 4 + 1 when unplugged. I just picked up a +6 tube and now it holds 10+1. If I wanted to do that to my 6-shot Mossy, I'd have had to buy another gun because the tube does not extend at all. You are stuck with the capacity it comes with due to the nature in which you screw the barrel to the receiver. I had the option to add +2, +4, or +6 to the 870. I'm going to use it as my fun 3-gun shotgun and there is a shotgun steel challenge match going on between a few clubs that this would be perfect for.

The safety on the 870 is on the trigger guard and if I wanted to pistol grip it (I don't) it would be much more convenient than the Mossy. I'd say opt for the 870 if you want upgradability, if you don't want to upgrade later, then the Mossy is about as good.

Vince

mu9en
10-22-2006, 12:03 PM
i like the 870 just likes how it looks and the finish...

wildman2
10-23-2006, 3:00 AM
The bottom line is --- They are both good guns and will serve you well. Pick the one that fits your body best.
I prefer the safety on my Mossberg but I enjoy my 870 too.

FrankG
10-23-2006, 4:04 AM
if you want a pimp 870 get the marine magnum version and buy a 28" barrel and have it finished like the rest of the gun.....i would love to do that....buy the way i have an 870 and love it....and the choke are a screw in type (changable)

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v81/94caddy/870marinemag1a.jpg

Sigman67
11-05-2006, 8:43 PM
Yes that is a pimp 870, my dad has an 870 express magnum 3.5 shells are huge!!!!

sargenv
11-06-2006, 8:04 AM
Yeah, the 3.5" shells are huge, costly, and kick like a mule.. though the idea behind shooting those shells is that you're either goose or turkey hunting and you have the additional padding of all the extra clothes for warmth or camoflage to not be seen. My dad had a Browning BPS in 3.5" and he never once felt the need to purchase 3.5" shells. He later sold it to finance something else.

Vince

Hot Shot
11-06-2006, 7:13 PM
I'll just cut and paste this one;

Get one of each!
I agree. :D What sold me on the Mossberg 590 was the location of the safety and the slide release, but I intend to buy a Remington 870 within the next few months. They're both great guns. In a tense situation, like home defense, I think the Mossberg would be easier to use, everything right where you need it, but for target shooting and hunting I'd use the Rem 870.:)

mike100
11-06-2006, 7:19 PM
Remington's mistake is competing with mossberg in the $200 range. Sure the rebate on the express almost makes me want to buy one just because, but If one was at all inclined to prefer the remington because of reputation and features, I'd suggest saving up for a wingmaster or police model..or an older police model that is blued with walnut stocks.

I shoot a 1979 wingmaster police with a longer barrel for sporting purposes. It looks great in natural sunlight...I don't get the same feeling when I see matte expresses.

Hopi
11-06-2006, 7:55 PM
I just dros'd a Mossberg 500 12 gauge "combo" at Big5, it was on sale for $219 and I used the 10% off coupon. I plan to sell the 18.5" barrel on ebay and use that money towards another shotgun. Helluva deal!

I also have a Mossberg 500 "cruiser" model that has performed flawlessly, even in close quaters bunny hunting :D

Prc329
11-06-2006, 8:06 PM
I saw that today and could barely contain my wallet. I still may go by and grope one tomorrow :)

WhiteGT
11-06-2006, 8:13 PM
The combo is on sale? My big 5 just has the 20" 8-shot for 219.

Hopi
11-06-2006, 9:01 PM
The combo is on sale? My big 5 just has the 20" 8-shot for 219.

Well, put mine on layaway when it was on sale, then used the 10% coupon later.
The layaway plan was great, i say was because it will be no more after this month:( , you could throw a rifle or shotgun on layaway when it was on sale and then wait a couple of weeks for more shipments of surplus guns to come in. I frequently added a couple of guns here and there to save the DROS fees.