12-Gauge Pump Actions: 1897s From Winchester and – Norinco?

The storied Winchester 1897 brings a lot of memories to the Cowboy range, but the updated Chinese copy offers a lot for shooters to consider. Our pick: Go with the newer gun.

Waterfowl Pump Guns: Big-Bore Magnums From Ithaca, Mossberg

In a test of high-brass shell shuckers, we thought the Model 37 Waterfowler outdid the Mossberg 835 Ultra-Mag in crucial areas.

Specialty Turkey Guns: Mossberg Gets Our Best Buy Nod

Ithaca's Turkeyslayer and Remington's Special Purpose Turkey gun also gain our favor, but at somewhat higher prices.

Pump Shotguns for Home Defense: Mossberg 500A Persuades Us

We think Mossberg's $307 Persuader is a better self-protection choice than similar models from Winchester and Remington.

Combat Pumps: Robars Elite Outshines Wilsons Standard

The Scattergun Technologies' 12-gauge Standard model nonetheless rates a Buy It mark for its performance-to-price ratio.

Remington 870 Super Magnum Superior To Mossberg 835 Ulti-Mag

When the government started requiring waterfowl hunters to use steel shot, shooters and the firearms industry quickly realized that 12 gauge steel loads didn't have as much power as the traditional lead shot loads. So, in the late 1980s, the Federal Cartridge Company became the first to produce 12 gauge 3 1/2-inch Magnum shotshells. Several other shotshell manufacturers have since followed suit.

Among the first shotgun makers to come out with a 3 1/2-inch model were Browning and Mossberg. Today, nearly every company that manufactures scatterguns offers at least one such firearm. All kinds of shotguns, from the inexpensive single-shot model to the high-priced over/under, are chambered for the big shell.

Many hunters haven't warmed up to the 12 gauge 3 1/2-inch shotgun, but its popularity is growing. One reason for this is because it will fire all types of shotshells from 2 3/4-inch up to 3 1/2-inch. Consequently, the shotgun is very versatile.

Benellis 3.5-inch Nova Gives The 870 a Run for Its Money

The need for a shotgun that can handle 3.5-inch magnum loads appears to be increasing, as more shooters determine they need the maximum load of steel shot they can manage for waterfowl shooting. Gun makers are being sure to chamber their shotgun offerings for the full-length shotshell with its 1 9/16-ounce of steel capability. The prime users of these long-chambered guns seem to be waterfowlers, who forego the 10-gauge guns because, presumably, they want to use their duck guns for other things that the 10 can't do very well. These uses include upland hunting, casual trap, even Sporting Clays to sharpen the eye in the off season.

The manufacturer's challenge is to make a gun that can, at l...

Synthetic 12-Gauge Pumps: The Black Shadow Gets Our Attention

[IMGCAP(1)] Twelve-gauge pump shotguns are an American tradition. They sure don't have the class of a good double, but they're hard to beat for knock-around utility. If you think in terms of wanting a shotgun to throw in the bottom of the boat for a day's poking around the local waters, the pump is a good and usually inexpensive choice. Add the versatility of insert choke tubes, and you can tailor the gun to the game season at hand. Moreover, today's pump will often have a polymer (plastic) stock, because they're cheaper than walnut and perhaps more durable, and they offer the added benefit of reduced visibility. If you're after a matte-black-finished, all-around pump shotgun, why not have t...

Gobbler Guns: Should You Pick Pump, Bolt, or Single Shot?

[IMGCAP(1)] Spring turkey season brings good adventure and, hopefully, good food to the table for those who venture forth after this big bird. Many, if not most, spring turkey hunters use shotguns (some states permit rifles, some mandate shotguns), and they generally take head shots with Full- or Extra Full-choked barrels at moderate ranges. Range depends on the individual hunter's skill in calling, the pattern produced by his shotgun, and of course the evasive luck of the chase. No matter the range, the shotgun-equipped turkey hunter must do some very accurate pointing, holding, and squeezing off of the shot. At very close range a shotgun works more like a rifle than a "scatter" gun, and on...

12-Bore Rifled Slug Barrels For Shotguns: Buy Browning

For many years hunters have used rifled slugs when they go after deer with a shotgun, but it wasn't until the inception of fully-rifled bores and the introduction of saboted loads that the shotgun became an efficient tool for hunters. Now, in some cases, accuracy can approach that associated with rifles, and searching for the best or most accurate load could provide the "shotgunner" with lots of off-season fun. Moreover, wingshooters and waterfowlers may be able to add a rifled barrel that costs around $150 to $325, rather than buying a complete, new slug gun.

Thus, the idea of simply adding a rifled barrel to an existing pump shotgun and turning it into a tack-driver has enor...

Magnum Pump-Gun Matchup: Benelli, Mossberg Go At It

Wanted: A simple, all-purpose pump shotgun for hunting upland game and waterfowl. Must be low-maintenance, tough, attractive, handy, inexpensive, and reliable. Serious inquiries only, please

Court Ruling Supports Carry Reciprocity

I’m looking at a remarkable opinion by Massachusetts District Court Associate Justice John F. Coffey, who ordered on August 3, 2023, that the state’s...