Dogfight! Mossberg 500 A pump shotgun vs. Remington 870 pump shotgun

PANAGYURISHTE, (BM) – The demand of pump-action shotguns exists both among security agencies and private individuals. The indisputable advantages over most semiautomatic devices is that the pump is generally more reliable, it allows you to quickly change the type of ammunition used (for example, from buckshot to traumatic), reload a gun at any time, unlike a weapon with a detachable magazine.

Historical reference

The Mossberg 500 was released by O.F. Mos sberg & Sons, Inc. in 1962. The weapon used new technical solutions for that time, such as an aluminum alloy receiver and the use of plastic parts.

The Mossberg 500 brand name is the fuse lever located on the upper rear surface of the receiver, in the same place as conventional double-barreled hunting rifles. The main advantages of the Mossberg 500 over such eminent competitors as the Remington 870, Winchester 12 and Ithaca 37 are more affordable price and more modern ergonomic characteristics of the weapon.

In 1987, O.F. Mossberg & Sons, Inc. proposed the US Army 500 model modification of the Mossberg 590. This weapon had an improved anti-corrosion coating, an elongated magazine for 9 rounds, a bayonet mount and a number of other differences. Since the late 80s, the Mossberg 590 has entered the various types of US forces, replacing the more expensive Remington 870.

Subsequently, the 590 model was modernized in the Mossberg 590A1, which is currently the most popular gun of this company, intended for self-defense and arming of law enforcement agencies.

Weapons of the Mossberg 500 series are available in dozens of modifications, with barrels from 356 to 710 mm, with a capacity of magazines from 6 to 9 rounds, with wooden and plastic butts. Mossberg 500 series shotguns are available in 12, 20 and .410 calibres.

The Mossberg 500 series became the basis for the creation of the Mossberg 9200 semi-automatic shotgun, as well as a number of pump action shotguns in other countries of the world. Company O.F. Enemy Front is already a familiar shooter where events take place during the Second World War.

Like other games of this kind, Mossberg & Sons, Inc. has its own production facilities in Mexico, producing even more affordable guns under the brand name Maverick. Maverick 88 shotguns are almost identical to the Mossberg 500 series guns, with most parts and assemblies of both guns being interchangeable.

The differences (in addition to the price) consist in a slightly different trigger design, the location of the fuse lever on the base of the trigger guard in the Maverick 88, against the top of the receiver in the Mossberg 500, as well as in the slightly changed design of a number of other parts.

Remington 870 was launched by Remington Arms Company, Inc. in 1950, immediately replacing the extremely popular, but rather expensive Remington31 shotgun in the model range of the company.

The company’s reasonable pricing policy allowed the Remington 870 to take the place of the most popular American pump-action shotgun, which before that were the more expensive Winchester 12 and Ithaca 37.

Over the past half century, the Remington 870 has become not only the most common hunting pump rifle in the United States, but also one of the most popular police and army rifles in the world. Since its inception, the Remington 870 began to supplant other models of guns in the U.S. armed forces and police, taking part in dozens of local conflicts and wars from Vietnam to Somalia.

To date, the majority of US law enforcement officials have preferred the Remington 870 series in choosing a police gun, despite the appearance of more sophisticated and reliable latest semi-automatic guns.

The total number of Remington 870 rifles manufactured in 2001 exceeds 5 million. Initially, the Remington 870 was produced only in the hunting performance of Wingmaster and the police Police.

Currently, the main version of the Remington 870 is the cheaper Express Magnum, which has a less expensive but more functional finish and simplified processing of the outer surfaces of the weapon. Remington 870 Wingmaster shotguns continue to be released in limited editions, selling at prices higher than Express Magnum.

The Remington 870 is available with barrels from 356 to 660 mm, with magazines from 4 to 8 rounds. Butts can be made from both hard wood species and polyamide. Until recently, Remin gton Arms Company, Inc. You launched a successful metal folding butt, but now folding stocks are produced only by other manufacturers of accessories.

The Remington 870 series shotguns are available in 12, 20 and .410 calibres. According to Remington Arms Company, Inc. the barrels of all released Remington 870 rifles of the same caliber (except for the Remington 870 Super Magnum series rifles of 12×89 caliber) are interchangeable.

The Remington 870 series became the basis for the creation of the Remington 1100, Remington 1187 semi-automatic shotguns, as well as a number of pump-action and semi-automatic shotguns in other countries of the world. Dozens of American companies are engaged in the production of accessories and modernization of the Remington 870 rifles, the most famous of which are Wilson (a trademark of Scattergun technologies) and Vangcompany.

Hold in hands

Remington 870 is militaristic, aggressiveness is felt in all appearance. In this case, the gun looks solidly and thoroughly. Mossberg 500A outwardly you look more calmly smooth lines of the receiver and buttstock give the impression of home warmth. Butt and forend Mossberg 500A massive, Remington 870 more “lean”.

Both guns are approximately equally applied and perfectly in their hands. A closer look reveals the following features. The neck of the Remington 870 butt is much thinner than the neck of the Mossberg 500A butt. The shape of the Remington 870 handguard forces it to be held closer to the muzzle than the Mossberg 500A, despite the fact that the handguard of the latter is somewhat shorter.

The loading procedures for their guns were very similar, but the following features were identified. The location of the Mossberg 500A fuse is more obvious than the Remington 870, and you can always see whether the weapon is on the fuse or not. At the same time, most shooters noted that reaching the Mossberg 500A fuse is just as difficult as the Remington 870.

The location of the shutter release button when cocked is much more convenient for the Mossberg 500A than for the Remington 870, which allows you to quickly throw an un-shot cartridge out of the shotgun chamber.

When loading cartridges into the magazine tray, the Mossberg 500A feeder is in the upper position, while the Remington 870 is always in the lower position, which is less convenient. Mossberg 500A has an orange feeder, which simplifies the control of the presence of cartridges in the store.

The Remington 870 Express Magnum is not equipped with such a convenient option in the basic configuration, although the bright green feeders are now installed only on police modifications of the Remington 870.

The ammunition in the Mossberg 500 A magazine is softer. When loading ammunition into the Remington 870 magazine, one of the shooters who had no previous experience with this weapon pushed his finger into the magazine where he had his finger stuck. Another feature of the Mossberg 500A is that, unlike the Remington 870, the under-barrel magazine does not understand and it is not possible to reduce the dimensions of the weapon during transportation.

The walls of the barrel of the Remington 870 are thicker than the Mossberg 500A. Mossberg 500A allows the use of weapons in winter mittens, since the trigger guard is wider. It also has a wider cartridge ejector window than the Remington 870.

Mossberg 500A

Barrel 20 inches with a drill cylinder. Sights gun sight. Forend and butt wooden. On the receiver there are regular openings for mounting the bracket under the optical or collimator sight.

A fairly popular model in the United States for the Lyceum and self-defense shotgun. The number of forearm rods is two. The barrel is locked by a shutter wedge. The shutter has two ejector teeth. The receiver is made of aluminum alloy, and the base of the trigger is made of plastic.

The pre-keeper is located on the rear surface of the receiver. The shutter release button is located on the left behind the trigger. The feeder is made of bright orange plastic with a point ledge, which makes it easier to inspect the store for the absence of cartridges in it.

The passport capacity of the underbarrel tubular magazine is 8 pa thrones. In reality, the store fits 7 pockets of 12×70 or 6 12×76. The manufacturer recommends literally “use those cartridges that show the best results in your Mossberg.” At the same time, it is not recommended to use homemade ammunition in the same place.

Remington 870 Express Magnum

The trunk is 20 inches, pay. Sights “rifle” front sight and adjustable rear sight. Butt and forend wooden. One of Remington’s most popular base models used for self defense.

The most popular (if not the only) equipment in Russia. The number of forearm rods is two. The barrel is locked by a shutter wedge. The shutter has one ejector tooth; spring-loaded reflector. The receiver is made of steel, the base of the trigger mechanism of the alloy.

The fuse is located on the back of the trigger guard. The shutter release button is located on the left, in front of the trigger. The feeder is made of black plastic. A full-time magazine with 4 cartridges; an extension cord for 2 paratrons of the Takstar company was installed. The manufacturer’s recommendation for ammunition is to advise the use of Remington cartridges.


The purpose of this test was not to determine the accuracy or accuracy of firing, especially since more “greenhouse” firing conditions are needed to determine accuracy.

We only note that the accuracy and accuracy of both shotguns were approximately the same, although the accuracy of firing a bullet from a Remington shotgun was slightly higher for some shooters, apparently due to more suitable rifle sights.

We were primarily interested in the reliability of the functioning of weapons and the convenience of shooting with different arrows, with different experience in using pump-action shotguns.

Cartridges were chosen the most affordable:

12x76Magnum, buckshot 6.2 mm produced by NPF Azot.
12x76Magnum, shot 5.0 mm produced by NPF Azot.
12×76, bullet Nitrogen NPF “Nitrogen”
12×70, shot 0000 5.0mm 34 grams powder 2.0 g. KHZ.
12×70, fraction 000 28 gr. gunpowder 1.8 gr. KHZ.
12×70, bullet Arrow gunpowder 1.8 gr. KHZ.

During the test, 30 rounds of ammunition of each type were fired, 15 from each gun. Shooting was carried out on special targets at a distance of 3550 meters, at a temperature of about 3 ° C. Before shooting, the weapon was cleaned and grease was removed from all surfaces.

The fire was fired from a standing position, in a series of 56 shots. Contrary to pessimistic expectations, the reliability of the work of rifles with domestic (and note not intended for this weapon) cartridges was quite satisfactory. The recoil when using Magnum cartridges was quite substantial, which was especially paid to unprepared shooters.

According to subjective feelings, the return of the Remington 870 was not much higher than that of the Mossberg 500A, perhaps due to the slightly larger weight of the latter. When firing Magnum cartridges, if you do not hold the fore-end with your left hand, the Remington 870 shutter opens and throws out the fired cartridge case. When shooting with conventional ammunition, this effect was not observed.

When firing from the Mossberg 500A, the shutter opened and threw out the fired cartridge when firing any ammunition. The nature of the descent of the Mossberg 500A is not bad for a police gun, but in general the trigger stroke has a long stroke and is quite tight. The descent of the Remington 870 can be called exemplary for melee weapons.

As one American weapons guru says: “The descent is like a thin glass stick being broken.”

Unfortunately, according to the instructions of both manufacturers, it is not recommended to adjust the effort and trigger stroke of both guns at home. The rate of fire of both pump guns turned out to be quite high, even when using cartridges with strong recoil, for beginners, the “aimed shot – reload” cycle took 0, 7–1.0 s

After a little practice, reloading is carried out immediately after a shot as on a semi-automatic weapon, while a full store of 6 rounds is quite accurately released into the target for 45 seconds from both guns.

When firing from the Remington 870 with bullet cartridges produced by the KHZ, there were two shell swellings, as a result of which the forend had to be pulled to continue shooting, hitting the butt plate with the butt plate on the ground. According to the owner of the weapon, such delays are not uncommon for the Remington 870 when using low-shell cartridges manufactured by KHZ.

When using cartridges of higher quality, as well as ammunition of foreign manufacture, such delays usually do not occur. When shooting from the Mossberg 500A with shotgun cartridges produced by KHZ 9 misfires occurred. Inspection of the cartridge sleeve showed that the capsule was punctured, but not as much as on the shot cartridges.

When re-firing “misfire” cartridges, the shooting took place without delay. According to the owner of the Mossberg 500A, his gun misfired for the first time, but before that he had used exclusively expensive cartridges of leading domestic manufacturers and cartridges of foreign manufacture. When firing cartridges NPF “Nitrogen” delays are not marked.

Disassembly. Cleaning. Care

The disassembly procedure for both guns is quite similar: it is necessary to unscrew the cover of the under-barrel magazine, move the fore-end to an intermediate position, and pull the barrel forward.

If necessary, the forearm with the bolt is disconnected from the weapon by depressing the latches inside the receiver. It is also possible to extract the trigger mechanism assembly from the receiver by knocking out the trigger axles of the trigger.

A feature of the Mossberg 500A is that the feeder tray is made as a separate part from the trigger for assembly, which complicates disassembly somewhat. Care for both guns requires approximately the same cleaning of the bore after firing and regular lubrication of moving parts.

At the same time, according to the owner of Remington870, modifications of the gun with normal phosphating are very demanding on the continuous cleaning of all (!) Surfaces from soot, moisture and other pollution. Otherwise, the gun “blooms” for several hours after shooting or staying in adverse conditions.

For this reason, most specialized “combat” modifications of the Remington 870 have other, more effective types of anti-corrosion coating. The owners of the Mossberg 500 series did not have such complaints.


Mossberg 500A and Remington 870 have quite similar technical and user qualities. However, the Remington 870 leaves the impression of a more solidly made weapon, which has, at least subjectively, greater service strength.

The Mossberg 500A, in turn, is a more thoughtful design that more fully meets modern requirements for weapon control elements. The reliability of working with cheap domestic ammunition for both guns can be considered satisfactory, but still for critical tasks, such as defense or hunting, it is recommended to use more expensive domestic or imported cartridges.

Both shotguns perform well with the functions of police / self-defense weapons with limited capabilities as a hunting weapon. However, one cannot but take into account the higher cost of the Remington 870 by almost $ 100. To summarize the above, we can recommend the following.

Mossberg 500A is better suited as a gun for a private user: lower cost, a little more demanding on the quality of ammunition, as well as lower (subjective) strength of the weapon, the owner will be much more careful about his own weapon.

In addition, you might think about buying a structurally similar, but much cheaper analogue from the same company Maverick 88.

The Remington 870 is an almost perfect pump for private security and law enforcement. For such organizations, a slightly higher price is uncritical, service strength and durability of the gun are much more important.

Such conclusions are confirmed by the experience of using pump-action shotguns in various private security companies: Remington 870 shotguns remain operational after many years of operation in the most severe conditions, while subjective observations of the Mossberg 500 series shotguns fail much faster.


Follow us everywhere and at any time. has responsive design and you can open the page from any computer, mobile devices or web browsers. For more up-to-date news from us, follow our YouTube, Reddit, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook pages. Do not miss the chance to subscribe to our newsletter. Subscribe and read our stories in News360App in AppStore or GooglePlay or in FeedlyApp in AppStore or GooglePlay

Subscribe to Google News

>>Be a reporter: Write and send your article.<<
Editorial team