G&R Tactical
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Thread: My first shotgun

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
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    To the OP I would recommend looking for a pre-Freedom Group 870 if you are set on a Remington. Don't write off the Express completely though. If you find an old one with the metal trigger guard they are great.

    Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wake27 View Post
    Regarding semis - knowing next to nothing about them, I would've guessed the Benelli M4 would be king for tac style shottys but everyone seems to love the 1301. Serious or anyone else, any reasons why?
    The M4 is heavy. Probably about a pound heavier than the 1301T but feels like two. The 1301T has the best factory stock that I have ever felt. And the price difference is significant.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wake27 View Post
    Regarding semis - knowing next to nothing about them, I would've guessed the Benelli M4 would be king for tac style shottys but everyone seems to love the 1301. Serious or anyone else, any reasons why?
    Price would be my bet. The M4, while unquestionably the best, is a pretty highly priced shotgun.

    In addition, Beretta produces top notch, reliable semiís.

    1301 - $900
    M4 - $1,700-$2,000+

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wake27 View Post
    I'm surprised there's so much love for the 870 vs 500/590. I bought an 870 Express mostly before I heard of the recent issues and it was one of the lucky ones that wouldn't function straight from the factory. So far, its the only gun I've ever bought that's been unreliable so I definitely have a bad taste in my mouth for that entire company. But, my surprise is more due to the controls. The more I use it, the more I think that the Mossberg pumps would be far more ergonomic, at least as far as the safety is concerned. I've heard of some other things that sound better too, though I can't remember what (loaded chamber indicator maybe?). I shot clays last weekend with the 870 and had a ton of fun - I actually really like pump guns. But, I was almost ready to order a 590A1 to replace it by the end of the day.
    I have a lot of 870 love because I grew up on them and worked on them as an LE armorer for a couple decades. At the first Mossberg Armorer Course I attended the instructor asked 'Can anyone explainwhy the 590 has a different magazine cap arrangement than the 500?' I responded 'Because the Remington patent expired?' He called me Commander Remington for the rest of the class.

    An 870 vs. 500/590 Epistole by Commander Remington

    General commentary on my dislike for Mossy 500's:

    I'm surprised there is any love whatsoever for the 500. We had 4 Mossy 500 Mariners among our training shotguns. Students were constantly having FTF malfunctions with them because they would pull the forearm to the rear instead of pushing forward as instructed. If you looked at these shotguns you could actually see the bolts tilt as you pulled the action to the rear. We tried everything we could think of to solve the problem, no go. Receivers were in good shape, locking lugs okay bolt and barrel hood. We finally sent them to Mossberg. Got them back same deal. Worked great as long as you pushed forward on the forearm as you ought to, otherwise kind of random shooters.

    Additionally, if you use them, they get dirty. Clean mag tubes are pretty important for function. 500 mag tubes have to be removed from the receiver to be cleaned, and if not re-installed properly will quickly work loose and cause FTF's and other issues.

    I haven't seen these problems with 590's.

    Ergonomic-wise the Mossy's are superior to the 870 - the Mossy tang-mounted safety is ambidextrous and is easier to use than the safety on the 870, with one glaring exception: if you have a pistol grip tac-stock, the safety is impossible to manipulate properly; the Mossy action release is located in a much better position than the action bar lock on the 870.

    Function-wise, as noted the 500's have, in my experience, problems with FTF's if proper technique - press forward on forearm, pull back on stock - is not used. On most 870's if you are pulling back hard enough on the forearm the shotgun will fire, but you will have a hiccup in cycling because the action lock is prevented from disengaging because of the pressure of the action bar against it.

    The Mossberg and Remington shell carriers differ in operation - the Mossberg is tucked up against the bottom of the bolt when the action is forward, lowers as the action comes to the rear. The shell is fed onto the carrier as the action is rearward and is raised for feeding as the action goes forward. The Remington carrier on the other hand is in the lowered position as the action is forward, stays lowered as the action comes to the rear and the shell is fed, then raises for feeding as the action completes it's rearward travel and comes forward.

    The result of these differences, in my experience, is that Mossbergs won't actually double-feed and Remingtons will. Remington solves most of the problems with double feeds with the flex-tab system that has been standard for at least a decade.

    On the other hand, the Mossberg system is more dependent on the mag tube spring to ensure proper function. Mossbergs are more prone to poop shells out the bottom due to brisk cycling combined with a weak spring. This results in an empty chamber.

    Because of the differences is the way the shell carrier works, it is slightly easier to sustain load the Mossbergs than the Remingtons as the shell carrier is out of the way. One the other hand, the Mossberg mag tube must be unloaded with the action forward. With the Remington you can very easily unload the mag tube with the action to the rear (with a short/tactical forearm) or the action forward. I prefer admin unloading with the action to the rear. so Remington gets my vote here.

    Mossberg receivers are aluminum, Remingtons are steel, even in the Express line.

    The 590's have a double extractor system on the bolt, the 870's don't.

    The ejector in the Mossberg is easily replaced with a screwdriver, the Remington ejector and ejector spring are more likely to need replacement and require special tools and know-how.

    About 20 years ago I bought my son a Ducks Unlimited 500 at a banquet. He used it heavy for about 10 years - trap, turkey shoots, waterfowl, pheasant, turkey, live release pigeons for his wife as she trained GSR's to retrieve. Thousands of rounds. I have had it down once to clean the mag tube for him and replace the spring, other than that he just cleans it whenever. He replaced it with a Mossberg 935.

    At the end of the day, except for use with tactical stocks, it seems apparent that the Mossberg 590's are the superior HD shotguns, but I still rock the 870's. Some guys like blondes, some guys like brunettes.

    Regarding semis - knowing next to nothing about them, I would've guessed the Benelli M4 would be king for tac style shottys but everyone seems to love the 1301. Serious or anyone else, any reasons why?


    From ARfcom:

    I have owned 3 Benelli M4 shotguns over the past 12 years. I have never owned or shot the short barreled version. My variants had the standard full size pistol grip stock as well as the skeleton collapsible stocks. I've had ones with the abbreviated mag tube, and ones with the full length mag tube. I have shot thousands of rounds of slugs, buckshot, birdshot ( real light weight stuff to real heavy turkey loads and steel waterfowl loads as well ). I have shot the gun with a red dot on top, ghost rings only, and different rifle scopes trying to make slug hits and hundreds of yards (just messing around type of stuff).
    I have only owned 1 Beretta 1301, it is completely stock. I have also shot a wide variety of ammo through it, mine is the tactical so it doesn't have choke tubes like the M4.

    Let me simply say, I am not an expert and I don't claim to be one. This is my opinion based on my experiences, your experiences may lead you to different conclusions.

    The Benelli M4 is physically a better built gun, I have simply never held a better built shotgun than a Benelli M4. With that said the 1301 is a very well built, very well assembled gun and I can't find anyplace that they left anything lose or not centered properly. The M4 has a lot of metal parts that Beretta chose to sub plastic instead. For example the rear sight and the rail are both plastic, I'm not saying that's bad but there is a reason there is a aftermarket community because of shortcuts like that. The M4 new goes anywhere from $1,500-2,000 I believe depending on model, the 1301 I paid 750 out the door brand new. With the price difference maybe it isn't fair to compare the two guns? I don't think so because Beretta is clearly going for the American civilian looking for a tactical shotgun and the M4 is THE tactical shotgun.
    My Beretta has never had a malfunction, not one. My Benellis all had issues feeding low brass birdshot, I don't have an issue with this because the gun is designed to run slugs and buck but it is relevant info for a civilian purchaser.
    The Beretta trigger is a much better trigger in my opinion, I don't know how much this matters for a shotgun being kept in a bedroom but for that kind of coin I would expect a better trigger from Benelli.
    Both guns run a gas system that both companies claim will keep the gun very clean inside and will require very little maintenance. I have found that to be true of both.

    I think the Beretta is easier to reload, my fingers simply don't get caught in the Beretta like they do in the Benelli (they also get caught in my super black eagle 2 when hunting but i'd never give that gun up it's an amazing gun)

    I like the recoil impulse of the M4 better, I think it's sharp but brief and you can get a rhythm going with it. The 1301 doesn't have a pistol grip so I simply can't run it quite as fast, I can pull it in tight but the clock doesn't lie.

    The M4 has a massive aftermarket support network, the 1301 has a couple of companies with limited products. No Comparison at all.

    Neither guns have ever shown rust (I do oil and clean each time I shoot though) but Benelli does offer a cerakote option now (My super black eagle 2 cam cerakoated and has stood up amazingly to upstate NY winters being drenched during duck season) I don't know what the Beretta protects their steel with.

    I've used both in shoot houses and range scenarios with barricades. I like having a pistol grip because I will often move and mainly hold the gun by the grip with 1 hand, I can't do that with the 1301. However the 1301 feels a lot more natural to me when I raise the gun from a low position and I can get it on target faster than the Benelli. My split times are also better with the Beretta but again that probably doesn't matter much in the real world.

    In conclusion, I think that for the vast majority of people looking for a run and gun range gun or a home defense shotgun the 1301 is a great option. At the price point you can add all the aftermarket stuff you want, buy a case of buckshot, and still be in it for less or substantially less than a M4.
    If you want the tried and true Marine door breaching gun the M4 is it and accept no substitute. The gun is a true beast and as long as you don't expect perfection with birdshot the thing will run and throw lead long after your shoulder tires.

    I'm not saying one is better per say than the other, I am saying they are somewhat different guns with radically different prices and that for many people (myself included) having a M4 isn't necessary. Of course having 30 pistols and ARs and everything else probably isn't necessary but being that this is America spend your money however you like, I've spent a lot to get to the point of making these comments today and I just wanted to suggest that there are many viable options out there that will solve the same problem.
    "If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse." - Henry Ford

    ďYou are responsible for your actions, but the world doesnít turn around you, so itís important that you find something bigger than yourself to work for, a way for you to make a difference.Ē - Drew Dix, MOH VN '68

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Feedback Score
    79 (100%)
    Thanks for all the info guys.
    Sic semper tyrannis.

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