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Mossberg 590A1 combat
shotgun review
(Page 2)
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By Dan S. Defense

The Mossberg 590A1 has a black, syntactic stock which has recoil absorbing materials. Since I like to shoot my shotguns, and since I opted to use it for home defense, I replaced the original stock with a Blackhawk Knoxx which helps absorb and reduce recoil. I wanted to be sure my wife could handle it in case of emergency. The Knoxx stock takes a bit of getting used to but it's worth the effort.

The Mossberg 590A1 is operated by pump action which means that it can use both full power and reduced recoil ammunition. The action is smooth and works well with all types of ammunition. The trigger is consistent, despite being somewhat heavy (I'm used to custom 1911 triggers) but given the weight of this weapon, the trigger pull as well as reduced recoil loads offer no problem.

Taking the Mossberg 590A1 to the range is fun. It handles any type of ammo, from cheap, reduced recoil Remington loads to full power military loads and self defense loads in 00 buck or slugs. I took several boxes of different brands and different types of ammo. I settled on the reduced 12 gauge Winchester Ranger 00 Buck ammo as my favorite for home defense, and on the 12 gauge Federal Law Enforcement Tactical Full Power (Flitecontrol 9 pellet) OO Buckshot for outdoor use. Both types were 100% reliable, accurate and manageable. The paper targets i used were shredded after a few rounds and had to be replaced often.

The Mossberg 590A1 is powerful but it isn't magical. There's a common misconception among people who think, or rather believe, that you don't need to aim with a shotgun. They think it sprays pellets and that pulling the trigger will suffice in any home defense scenario, That isn't correct and in fact dangerous. While it is true that a shotgun 00 buck will spread, it isn't a magic spray and it depends on distance from the muzzle.

To see what type of spread I had to contend with at home, I measured the distance from my bedroom door to the end of the corridor that leads to the front door. I then used that same distance at the range with different 00 buck loads. I found that the spread was about the size of a small tea cup, just a few inches wide. You would certainly want to take aim prior to shooting!

The sights on the Mossberg 590A1 are excellent. You get ghost rings for the rear sight and fiber optics for the front. With slugs, this rifle can be accurate to over 100 yards and that is impressive for a shotgun. I found it easy to get a sight picture and get back on target. I don't rapid fire with a shotgun but I think you could send two quick shots without much difficulty. Again, the weight of the 590A1 helps with recoil control and shooting this with anything but magnum loads is truly fun.

In summary, the Mossberg 590A1 is a powerful, military shotgun capable of operating in any environment. It is reliable, accurate and fun to shoot but it is also heavy and more expensive than a Remington 870 or lower end Mossberg shotguns. When I look at the features such as the sights for example and the robustness of the weapon, I think the the price is fair. Throw in the M7 bayonet and it's more than fair. If you are seeking a serious weapon for home defense or hunting, I would highly recommend you give the Mossberg 590A1 a hard look. it will be well worth your time.

Until next time, stay safe by staying alert.


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