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I'm doing some research / homework into purchasing a new turkey gun for next season. I currently use a borrowed Remington 870 Express Magnum with fiber optic sights. I like the Remington, but it's a bit pricey and I really don't like to carry borrowed equipment for the fear of "what if something would happen to it". I was looking at the Mossberg 500, but after reading some reviews there appears to be a problem with the rear sight right from the factory. The rear sight really wouldn't be an issue because I intend to add some type of scope regardless. Any serious thoughts or input?
 

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Mossberg's are fine...I've never had an issue with one..and I've shot many of them..

My biggest complaint is they are bulky and kinda "clunky". And the tang safety is great for a normal stock...for a pistol grip "tactical" stock i find the safety impossible to use without taking my hand from the grip..

A used 870 won't break the bank..don't overlook used..it's a shotgun..if it's not rusty or obviously broken and the inside of the barrel doesn't look weird (bent or bulged) there's no issue to buy used...I've never bought a new shotgun actually lol...


Most shotguns come with a basic bead sight..If your into turkey hunting I'd highly recommend a good fiber optic sight or an optic of some sort... especially if you shoot a decent choke/load that shoots a decent pattern...

The sky is the limit...or...your wallet..


Handle a Mossberg and see how it feels to you...you can find both under $300 used without looking hard.. atleast last time I looked at used shotguns..

Don't get caught up in "turkey" models..barrels can be cut...stocks can be changed..sights can be added...metal and stocks can be painted or camo dipped etc....you can buy a basic run of the mill gun and as funds become available do "upgrades" as you see fit..
 

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The only turkey gun I've ever owned is a 25 year old Remington 870 Express Magnum.
The gun has been flawless.
If you like the Remington, look around at gun shops and you should be able to find hundreds of used 870s without much trouble. Buy a good used one and save a bunch of money.
Mossbergs throw great patterns, but those guns are absolute junk. Clunky, heavy, rattlin', mule kickers are all they are.
 

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I own three Mossbergs and none of them are clunky rattling heavy mule kickers lol all three are 500's and so far I killed 58 turkeys with the one. If you want something heavy to carry around get a Remingturd
 

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I'm with Moss, I highly recommend you give the mossbergs a look. I own two 835's and both have filled lots of tags for me over the years. It really comes down to preference. It's like Ford, Dodge and Chevy for example. There's saying out there for each of them, but you have to pick what's best for you. See if any friends have an 870 or an 500/835 and go out and shoot it. I have both, but grew up hunting with the 835. Shot my first longbeard at 16 with an 870 supermag I borrowed from my uncle. That Christmas I got my 835 and that's all i have used since. Bought a real tree hardwoods 835 about 8 years ago that I made my all time turkey gun. My other one now serves as a back up and deer slug gun. Good luck with your choice.
 

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Its all in what you like. I have the old 835 and it does kick like a mule.Always liked the 870 any more I use the youth model 20 870 we got for the kids.Holds a great pattern and doesnt kill on bothe ends
 

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I have a few up scale Turkey guns as 12's. However a few years back I won a H&R Pardner 20 pump and purchased a Mossberg 20 ga. Since I have taken 19 Spring Gobblers in PA and OH with these two guns. Both are light weight, camo and I don't baby them in the woods as I tend to with my more expensive 12's.

A 20 ga. provides less recoil and weight than heavier 12's. I did spend some dollars testing chokes and ammo. Money well spent. I use Heavy or Federal 7's and have taken gobblers from 10 to 47 yards with no second shots.

I too am not fond of the Mossberg's rattle or tang sight..not easy for me to engage to fire without extra movement and it makes a slight click. But that did not stop me from taking two mature gobblers this season.

The suggestion for a used gun is a good one especially one with removal chokes which will allow you to spend a few bucks on testing chokes and ammo.

Remington would also be a good choice. I believe any shotgun with a barrel in good condition matched with the right choke and ammo will provide much better success than just picking a shot gun based on the manufacture's name.

Good luck.
 

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I would go with the Rem. 870 over any Mossberg. I have owned both. I still have a Rem 870. The Mossberg 835 went out the door years ago.
 

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I have a Mossberg 935 with a .670 Pure Gold choke and I wouldn't change a thing. Also have a pimped Remington 20 gauge with a Burris Fast Fire site and Sumtoy choke that's pretty handy on long hunts...nice and light!
 

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It's funny, I have this conversation pretty often and I've come to the conclusion that Mossberg must put out two very different products, depending on circumstances unknown. I have owned two Mossbergs. The first is a 500 that I acquired when I was about 15 years old and I stIll own it. It rattles a little, it kicks, but it is a solid firearm. About seven years ago I purchased an 835 Ulti Mag Tactical Turkey and it was literally the worst shotgun I have ever touched in my life. If you want details you're going to need to call me on the phone because I'm not laboring to type all of the shortcomings. I then went to a Benelli Nova and now I have an 870 supermag and I'll never go back. Perfect turkey gun.
 

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I bought a Mossie 500 youth 10-12 years ago and have been happy with it.It was just over $200 bucks and a great bang for the buck.The wood and bluing is nice,nice and light but it does rattle a little but I can live with that.I prefer the factory bead site and don,t see a need for me anyways for FO,s on a smooth bore s/gun.It don,t hold a candle to my dad,s vintage Ithaca 37 16 ga but nothing does.
 

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have both Mossberg 500 and one of the original 835's. the 'best turkey gun,' like anything, comes down to opinion based on personal preference. for ME, that old 835 with open sights is the best turkey gun i can ask for. as for 'kicking like a mule,' i do remember it being brutal when i patterned it shortly after getting it two decades ago, but it shoots spot-on so i dont pattern anymore, and i cant recall ever feeling recoil when squeezing on a bird. funny how that works....

in the end, almost any 'turkey gun' will work perfectly fine if you do the work and put the bird in range. which one is 'better' is just a urinating contest. find one you like and feels good in your hands, and you'll be fine.
 

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This is pretty much a Ford Vs. Chevy debate. I've got several Mossberg's on the rack, and done terrible things to some of them, and they all still go bang and cycle. My only experience with an 870 is a newer one my brother got new a few years back that was complete junk. I've heard from plenty of other fellas that have had the opposite experiece.

I'd hit up your LGS, and find either a Mossy 500/835, an older Remy 870 (before their QC took a crap), a Winny 1300, or an H&R single shot. Find the ones in your budget and see which one feels good in your hands. All of those guns have solid aftermarket support and parts available, and are reasonably cheap to aquire used. And most importantly, those guns combined have probably killed more turkeys than Butterball.
 

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People put way too much thought into choosing a weapon that your taking a stationary shot at 30 yards with.I've owned one Mossberg,three 1300's and at least that many 870's over the years.I can't say any of them had any issues.They all went bang.Generally speaking,you can get a lemon with any brand but the 870's are usually pretty bullet proof.I don't even own a 12 ga any more but my all time favorites were a win 1300 black shadow and a win 1300 nwtf that had an 18" barrel.That would have been the ultimate turkey gun but the rear sight didn't have enough elevation.
 

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I carry my old 870 with a 20" barrel and luv it for turkey. I'll admit Ive killed more with my 1300 but Ive had it a long time. I don't like my 835 as it feels clunky. My Nova is great but its heavy. The semis stay at home as they are waterfowl guns.

Like someone said, I'd buy used. Save lots of $. Plus most of the older models are of higher quality.
 

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Take a look at all of the above guns and then some. The bottom line is that there are a lot of great turkey guns out there. It's come down to what your comfortable with, knowing the limitations and how it patterns with certain loads and chokes, and building the confidence with it. Period.
 
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